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.

lwishon55's picture

Christians in Christ Presence praying for us.

It seems that there should be a real distinction made between those of us who remain on earth and those who have gone on to be with Christ. Even though we are still counted as one family [Eph. 3:14-15], it still remains that we are in different circumstances. It should first be noted that to ask or "pray" for the saints to pray/intercede on our behalf, is asking them to perform the role of mediator. The scriptures are quite plain that there is "one mediator between man and God, the Man Christ Jesus". If this was to be an acceptable practise, i.e., asking the saints who have gone on before us, to pray for us, there would be some indication or instruction in the Scriptures themselves, which there is none.
Secondly, I believe it is in the plan/wisdom/command of God, that we who are walking with Him here on this earth, are to pray with each other and for each other, due to our common circumstance in this world. That is, our faith has not turned to sight, just yet. So we are all "looking through a glass darkly", walking by faith in this world. We are all having to walk in this world, trusting God in the manner and to the degree that is suitable to the development of our faith and maturity process. This world is the quarry in which the stones of the eternal temple are being carved. We are all being hammered and chiseled by the Master Builder, so that we will fit perfectly in His building, when we are moved to the temple site [Eph. 2:19-22].

It is for this reason that we are to pray for one another, because who better can bear one another's burdens that those who have the same burdens.

Anyway, something to ponder.