Do We Go Straight To Heaven When We Die?

Jude Missa

We Christians believe that we will go to heaven someday and be with our Lord Jesus Christ. Heaven is a place where there is no sorrow or suffering. But in today’s generation, many people are missing out on two possible places where we might go after death — Purgatory and Hell.

What is Purgatory? 

The Purgatory is a place where the soul is cleansed if it still has the stain of sins. This includes mostly the venial sin before we go to heaven.

does Purgatory exist in the Bible? 

Yes. Although its name was not stated in the Sacred Scriptures or the Holy Bible, but the description of the Purgatory and its function can be found in the Sacred Scriptures. One of the examples is in Isaias 4:4 of the Old Testament: 

“If the Lord shall wash away the filth of the daughters of Sion, and shall wash away the blood of Jerusalem out of the midst thereof, by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of burning.” 

The Holy Spirit reveals the truth about Purgatory to the Apostles, that is why it is part of the Sacred Oral Tradition in the Catholic Church. One of the examples is in the letters of St. Paul the Apostle to the Corinthians (1 Corinthians 3:15):

“If any man’s work burn, he shall suffer loss; but he himself shall be saved, yet so as by fire.”

Also, in Revelation 21:27, it was stated that: “Nothing unclean shall enter Heaven”, which means a man who lives on earth faithfully to God, but still has a stain of sins like the venial sins, must go through the purgatory to be cleansed. And to make the cleansing procedure fast, we must pray for the souls in Purgatory so they can go to heaven. The Protestants don’t believe in Purgatory because its name was not stated in the bible because this place was named by the Catholic Church, the Church that was built by our Lord. 

Sadly, many Catholics adopt the teachings of the protestants that there is no purgatory and we all go straight to heaven. This false teaching is a danger because while we don’t pray for the Holy Souls in purgatory, our loved ones who are currently purging in the purgatory delays their arrival in Heaven. Cleansing in Purgatory is also a suffering for the souls. So as Catholics, we must pray for them to stop their suffering in purgatory and have their eternal rest with our Lord Jesus Christ. 

do the Saints go through the Purgatory? 

Yes. Some saints did before they went to heaven. The souls in purgatory are also holy, but need to be cleansed before they go to heaven. That is why the souls in purgatory are often called “The Holy Souls in Purgatory”. 

What is Hell? 

Hell is a place where God put the fallen angels, who are known as the demons, as punishment for their rebellion against Him. This is also the place where the sinners who don’t repent go and suffer in the hands of the devil and the Hell’s eternal fire.

If this is for the Sinners, why did Jesus Christ go to Hell after His Death? 

Our Lord went to Hell after his death to free the people who died before the coming of Christ and have a friendship with God despite having sinned. But our Lord does not go to the place in Hell, where the devil is, He went on the edge of Hell’s circle which we called “Limbo”. 

Can a person who is now in hell be saved and have a chance to go to heaven? 

No. Once you are condemned to hell, there will be no second chance. We are always given a second chance while we are living in this world by confessing our sins, repent and never to sin again. So, while we still breathe, let’s repent and do not sin again.

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