Today’s “Gem” from Bob Stanley’s “The Catholic Treasure Chest”: The Reality of Purgatory

“You, therefore, must be perfect,
as your Heavenly Father is perfect.”
Matthew 5:48

It stands to reason that since GOD is perfect, then Heaven has to be a perfect place, and nothing imperfect can enter (Revelation 21:27).

GOD will not join Himself to anything defiled. If a person dies with sins not sufficient for hell (the sin unto death, 1John 5:16-17), and has lesser sins to prevent entry into Heaven, then there has to be a third place in which to atone for them. This would be a temporary place, as stated in Matthew 5:25-26, “You shall not come out until you have paid the last penny”.

Come out of where?

After Adam’s sin, the gates of Heaven were closed, and no one was allowed to enter (John 3:13) until Jesus Christ redeemed the human race and opened the gates once again. Where were the spirits of Moses and Elias, who appeared and spoke with Jesus at the transfiguration (Matthew 17:3)?

They could not have been in Heaven since it was closed, and they would have been lost had they been in hell. They had to have been in a third place. If there was a third place then, why not a third place now?

What about Lazarus? He was already dead four days (John 11:17) when Jesus arrived at his tomb. Where was his soul during those four days? It could not be heaven or hell for the same reasons as for Moses and Elias. His soul had to have been in a third place.

Philippians 2:10 says:
“That at the name of Jesus, every knee should bend of those in Heaven, on earth, and ‘under the earth’.”

‘Under the earth’, could it mean hell, or is it a third place?

Non Catholic theologians struggle trying to reconcile their denial of the existence of Purgatory with what Paul said in 1Corinthians 3:12-15: “Now if any one builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw— each man’s work will become manifest; for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done. If the work which any man has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward. If any man’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss, though he himself will be saved, but only as through fire*.”

To whom do these verses refer? Obviously the person is not in hell, as verse 15 says “himself will be saved”. He cannot be in heaven either as the same verse implies suffering, “as through fire”, and there is no suffering in heaven. These verses say that man will be purified by fire and then will be saved to enter Heaven. Where will this, “yet as though through fire”, take place if not in a third place called Purgatory?

*The Greek word used for fire is “pursw” (puroo)
of which “pur” is the root word for Purgatory.

Read more

Go To Bob Stanley’s “The Catholic Treasure Chest”

All About Sin, Death, Purgatory and Indulgences (PDF)

Download the Classic “The Four Last Things” (PDF)

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