Many of us have felt the heartache that comes from losing a family pet. And to soothe the pain, we may begin to wonder where are they now? Will we ever see them again? Do dogs go to heaven?
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I have always found C. S. Lewis' thoughts on this issue to be useful. In his book The Problem of Pain, he wrote: "The real difficulty about supposing most animals to be immortal is that immortality has almost no meaning for a creature which is not 'conscious' in the sense explained above. If the life of a newt is merely a succession of sensations, what should we mean by saying that God may recall to life the newt that died today? It would not recognise itself as the same newt; the pleasant sensations of any other newt that lived after its death would be just as much, or just as little, a recompense for its earthly sufferings (if any) as those of it's resurrected - I was going to say 'self', but the whole point is that the newt probably has no self. "If, nevertheless, the strong conviction which we have of a real, though doubtless rudimentary, selfhood in the higher animals, and specially in those we tame, is not an illusion, their destiny demands a somewhat deeper consideration … Man was appointed by God to have dominion over the beasts, and everything a man does to an animal is either a lawful exercise, or a sacrilegious abuse, of an authority by Divine right. The tame animal is therefore, in the deepest sense, the only 'natural' animal - the only one we see occupying the place it was made to occupy, and it is on the tame animal that we must base all our doctrine of beasts. Now it will be seen that, in so far as the tame animal has a real self or personality, it owes this almost entirely to its master. And in this way it seems to me possible that certain animals may have an immortality, not in themselves, but in the immortality of their masters."
I want to believe with all my heart that my cat, Sophie, will go to heaven and that my dogs, Skippy and Maggie, will be there as well. The Bible only gives us a hint: In 2 separate descriptions of the New Heaven and New Earth, the Bible mentions that animals will be present. Isaiah 11:11 says, “The wolf shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the young goat and the calf and the lion and the fattened calf together, and a little child shall lead them.” This description of peaceful relations between species of animal continues for three more verses and a similar passage is found in Isaiah 65:25. There are no household pets mentioned in either place, but the fact that animals at all are mentioned means it is completely possible that we could see dogs and cats as well. Shelby Turner
❖The answer is NO - it is simply profound yet profoundly simple. Let us study from the scriptures. ❖ Men and animals(beasts) are contrasted. ➊ Both Men and animals here on earth have body and spirit, Men only have souls but animals don't. ➋ The soul and spirit (the inner man) is immortal (1Pet. 3:4) but animals are NOT immortal. ➌ Only human beings have innerman (soul +spirit) made of spirit bodies and this is eternal as never dies.. ➍ It is only the body that dies at physical death (Jas. 2:26) and it is only the human-body (not animals) that will be resurrected (Jn. 5:28-29; Dan. 12:2). ➎ The soul and spirit (inner man) leaves the body at death (Jas. 2:26; 2Cor. 5:8; Php. 1:21-24; Eccl. 12:7; Num. 16:22; 27:16; Lk. 8:49-56; 16:19-31; 23:43; Rev. 6:9-11; 1Ki. 17:20-22; 2Sam. 12:19-23). ➏ Only humanbeings are made with immortal innerman as they will be part of resurrection (first or second)depending on their destiny ➐ Animals that die won't get resurrected at all. ➑ Animals will not face judgements or punishments after death like men. ➒ We further understand that the soul and spirit, or the inner man, has a form and shape exactly like the outer man and fits into the body even to the outer skin. This is based upon the fact that the soul is that part which feels and the spirit is that which knows. ➓ The inner man can wear clothing, rest, eat, drink, and do other things (Rev. 6:11; Mt. 17:5; Lk. 16:19-31 Heb. 12:23). After death, our inner man of the departed in Heaven will be clothed in white robes who die in Christ; (Rev 6:11) but no clothing for the wicked men in the Hell ⓫ The saved innermen are carried by holy angels into paradise in Heaven (Lk. 16:22; 23:43; 2Cor. 5:8; Php. 1:21-24; Heb. 12:22-23; Rev. 6:9-11).) And the departed souls of the wicked men will NOT be escorted by any angels ⓬ Upon rapture, the saved innermen will get the immortal bodies or glorified bodies. ❖ All men die alike and all bodies see corruption like the beasts (Ps. 49:8-9 Gen. 3:19; Eccl. 3:19-20 Dan. 12:2). Man under the curse has no preeminence over the beasts as far as physical death is concerned, for he is under the penalty for sin; this is eternal death which naturally brings physical death. That is why the wisest Solomon wrote that all men and beasts go to one place--they turn to dust again. (Eccl. 3:20). This only refers to the (flesh) body. Man is appointed once to die and after this the judgment (Heb. 9:27). Beasts (animals are not under the death penalty for sin; nevertheless they die and always will, for they were made subject to death like the flowers, trees, and vegetation. Even in the New Earth they will die as sacrifices (Isa. 66:22-24 Ezek. 40-48,). ❖ Only those who are part of First Resurrection will go to Paradise located in Heaven. Bible calls them Firstborn. Those who are NOT part of the First resurrection will be classified as beasts and they will go to Hell until second resurrection. According to Solomon, the spirit of the beast goes downward to the earth, and the spirit of man goes upward (Eccl. 3:21). I believe Solomon contrasted saved men goes up and unsaved ones goes downwards. Like beasts This is all we know about the destiny of animals, but the Bible is very clear on where men go at death, how long the righteous and the wicked remain in their respective places (Paradise or Hell respectively, when and why they come out to enter their resurrected bodies, and where they will spend eternity after the resurrection. Death ends all probation for the one who dies. If he is righteous at death, his soul and spirit go to heaven awaiting the resurrection of the body (2Cor. 5:8; Php. 1:21-24 Heb. 12:23; Rev. 6:9-11). If he is wicked at death his soul and spirit go to hell to await the resurrection of his body (Lk. 16:19-31 Isa. 14:9; Rev. 20:11-15). There is no such thing as purgatory or second chance to be on probation in the Millennium or any other time. There is no reincarnation either.
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