by Rev. C.J. Barry Kentner
When Jesus died on the cross, the Apostles Creed says “He descended into Hell…”
What did He do there?
According to Ephesians 4 verse 8. He preached a Salvation Message.
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He spoke to all those who had died under the law: Preached the Good News of the Gospel, and then on the third day, led them all to Heaven and Presented them to His Father. I have two witnesses to confirm this fact. The first is Mary Magdalene; who miraculously saw Jesus on the way. John 21 tells the story; She arrives at the tomb, sees the stone drawn away, and two angels in white sitting where
Christ was laid….one at the head, the other at the foot. This is one of the signs: that the angels took the place of the Ark of the Covenant. There was no need for a High Priest to go into the Ark behind the curtain and sprinkle blood. As she turned away she saw what she took to be the gardener, but it was our Lord. And as she spoke to him he was saying “ Touch Me naught, for I have not yet ascended to the Father.” And then He disappeared.
I think he was in the process of going to the Father with all the souls who had believed him. In other words, he was “leading Captivity captive. Paul, in his letter to the Ephesian Church, is the second witness to this fact…listen. “He led captivity captive…and gave gifts unto men.” (Ephesians Chapter 4, verses 8 to 10). The chapter continues:
“Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended into the lower parts of the earth.” He that descended is also the same who ascended up, far above all heavens that he might fill all things.” That means that He led those who believed from the Captivity of the Law to the Freedom of Christ. You see, Acts Chapter 17, verse 28 says “In Him we live, and move, and have our being—including breath.
Have you ever thanked God for breath?
God Himself breathed the breath of life into Adam, and every man and woman since then have lived by the breath of God. Ephesians four also says He gave gifts to men. The gift of Salvation was one…but he gave much more. He also gave the Five-Fold Ministry gifts to us as well. And also the Gifts of the Holy Spirit… Love, Joy, Peace, Longsuffering, Gentleness, Goodness, and Faith… Meekness and Temperance.
Now, one more thing.
1 Corinthians 15, verse 22 says “For as in Adam all die, so in Christ ALL shall be made ALIVE. The Good News is when Christ Arose, all those who arose with Him also arose alive… so since Jesus died “once for all” then we who believe are also alive in Christ because when he arose he raised us as well from the grave.