The Bible tells us in the Book of Hebrews 9:27 that we will all die.
“And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment,” (NKJ)
I believe what the Bible says, and I believe it is absolutely true. If the Bible says everyone will die, then that is what will happen – to everyone.
Remembering the verse above, let’s take a look at two prophets from the Old Testament.
First, there was Enoch. He was a godly man who lived in the time after Adam and before Abraham. We learn about Enoch in the Book of Genesis.
“When Enoch had lived 65 years, he became the father of Methuselah. After he became the father of Methuselah, Enoch walked faithfully with God 300 years and had other sons and daughters. Altogether, Enoch lived a total of 365 years. Enoch walked faithfully with God; then he was no more, because God took him away.” Gen.5:21-24 (bold print added)
When you read Genesis Chapter 5, you will see it is basically a list of Adam’s family line. There are nine generations listed, of which Enoch is the seventh. All the other paragraphs about each descendant ends with the phrase “and then he died”. The paragraph about Enoch’s life, however, ends with the phrase “because God took him away”.
Nothing further is said in Genesis about Enoch. All we know is that he lived a Godly life for 365 years, and then God took him away.
Second, let us consider Elijah. He too was an Old Testament prophet who lived many generations after Enoch. Elijah was also taken to Heaven by God without experiencing death. The Bible tells us of this supernatural event in 2 Kings 2:11.
“As they were walking along and talking together, suddenly a chariot of fire and horses of fire appeared and separated the two of them, and Elijah went up to heaven in a whirlwind.”
The Bible verse from Hebrews says that all men will die, but these other two verses tell about two Old Testament prophets that were taken to Heaven without experiencing physical death. I would like to advance one theory of Bible scholars explaining this apparent inconsistency.
Chapter 11 of the Book of Revelation discusses some of the events of the Great Tribulation, which is the terrible seven year period before Jesus returns to end satan’s rule of the Earth. This chapter speaks about “two witnesses” who will prophesy for the Lord in Israel during the Great Tribulation Period. They will perform many miracles, and many people will be saved because of them.
After three and one half years of prophesy and miracles, they will be murdered by the antichrist, and will lay, unburied, in the street for three and one half days. The world will celebrate their death. But then the two witnesses will be publically brought back to life and summoned to Heaven by God in front of the whole world.
Elijah, who never experienced death, could be one of these two witnesses. He didn’t die at the end of his lifetime in the Old Testament, because God was reserving his death for this spectacular event during the Great Tribulation. There is a Bible verse which speaks of Elijah’s return to Earth during the end times, adding credibility to this theory.
“See, I will send the prophet Elijah to you before that great and dreadful day of the Lord comes. He will turn the hearts of the parents to their children, and the hearts of the children to their parents; or else I will come and strike the land with total destruction.” (Malachi 4:5-6)
Enoch also has a connection to the End Times, and could be the other “witness”. In the Book of Jude, we are told that he was a prophet who warned of the coming judgement when the Lord Jesus returns.
“Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied about them: “See, the Lord is coming with thousands upon thousands of his holy ones to judge everyone,” (Jude 1:14-15)
So, the theory I am advancing says that two great prophets, Enoch and Elijah, never died. They both had a Biblical connection to the Great Tribulation period which will occur before Jesus returns. God chose them and reserved their death for a special time that would advance His purposes and glorify His name.
God is in control of the destiny of mankind, and moves through history in amazing ways and causes all things to work together for His people.
Are you in harmony with God’s will? Are you putting your faith in Jesus Christ? What is God’s purpose for your life? How does He want your life to glorify His name?
Say a prayer, right now, for Jesus to come into your life, and so you can start living as a child of God.
“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” Romans 8:28