What happens to people when they die?

Do they go to heaven or hell, or something else?


The Bible clearly shows us that individuals who have died are resting in peace in their graves until the time of a resurrection (John:5:28; Ecclesiastes:9:5). Paul, in 1 Corinthians 15, explains in detail how the dead will be resurrected from their graves. The Bible does not say we go to heaven when we die (John:3:13), nor does it say that God will punish sinners forever in a hell fire. These beliefs come from the false concept of an immortal soul, as well as a misunderstanding of Jesus' teachings about our reward, and how some will be punished.

Jesus was in His grave for three days and three nights and then received life again when His Father resurrected Him. This is also what happens to all individuals who die. The dead await the time of the resurrection when they will be given life once again (Daniel:12:2).

If you would like to learn more about this subject, request your free copies of the two booklets What Happens After Death? and Heaven & Hell—What Does the Bible Really Teach? Both are also available for viewing or downloading from our literature library.


sierra's picture

Where does the soul wait after death?

Ivan Veller

Ivan Veller's picture

Dear Sierra,

The soul sleeps "in the dust of the earth": “‘Your dead will live; their [lifeless] bodies will rise up again! You who sleep in the dust, get up and shout for joy! The dew of a new day’” (Isaiah:26:19a, Voice 2012) is born; the waters break—“‘the earth will give birth to her dead’” (Isaiah:26:19b, NIV 2011). “Multitudes who sleep in the dust of the earth will awake” (Daniel:12:2a, NIV 2011): http://www.ucg.org/booklet/heaven-and-hell-what-does-bible-really-teach/...

See also: http://www.ucg.org/death/what-does-bible-say-about-immortal-soul/

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