Christians speaking to the dead

trueseek1's picture

Had never thought of it this way, until I found a book on the shelf expounding on one of the well known passages of the Holy Scriptures: The Transfiguration passage. Jesus has a live visit from Moses and Elijah and in the presence of the other fallible men, a couple of apostles, he enters into conversation with these two "dead saints". The author also highlighted another instance when God rose the dead and they went into the cities to show themselves as alive in Christ. I had read these passages many times before, and heard countless evangelical sermons on them, but in all my previous readings of the last couple of hundred years of evangelical commentaries, I had never heard of the reality that these visitations represented. Does anyone know how did the faithful early Church fathers who honored God, in the nonheretical Church, view these passages?

Also, the author differentiated clearly between using a medium to reach the dead as Saul did to talk to Samuel, and both these passages, with the understanding that Christ revealed clearly that it is not sinful to have a conversation with a live saint, but evil if one tries to use mediums as the ungodly do.

Thanks for all insights on these passages.

Food for thought

- When mediums "communicate" with the dead, often they become possessed by the spirit of the person they "conjure up"; hence the term "medium" - - their body becomes the "medium" thru which a 'dead' person's spirit communicates
- When Jesus spoke with Moses and Elijah on the Mount, neither Jesus nor the 3 (Peter, James, John) became possessed by any spirits of the deceased; depending on one's interpretation, this could have been an actual resurrection, or a vision; there was no evidence of body possession
- Compare to the centurion's daughter; Dorcas / Tabitha resurrection by Peter; Elisha; etc.

Also note:
- Moses, under the leading of the Spirit of God, travelled back in time to view and write history from Adam to Joseph in the book of Genesis
- Ezekial and Isaiah, under the lead of the Spirit of God, view early creation, including the fall of Lucifer
- If the prophetic gifting can allow one to foretell the future, why couldn't it also allow one to know the truth of the past?
- Joel prophesies that all people, old and young, male and female, would, in the latter days, have dreams and visions of a prophetic nature (Joel 2, Acts 2). Perhaps this provides a spiritually safer alternative to revisiting the past than mediumship.