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John 16:3, "Nevertheless I tell you the truth; it is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you." Jesus was speaking to His disciples in the quoted scripture. Acts chapter 2 suddenly a sound from heaven came, like rushing wind. All were filled with the Holy Ghost. Jesus had promised to send the comforter, and He did! Ephesians 4:8-10, "Wherefore He said, when He ascended up on high, He led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men. Now that He ascended, what is it but that He has also descended first into the lower parts of the earth? He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that He might fill all things." I believe that when Jesus was crucified on that cross, He took that thief with Him. He remembered his request in faith. He ushered the thief to Hades, and took him to paradise in His loving arms. Jesus knows everything about us. He knows the heart of even a thief asking forgiveness in his moment of death.
Great question, Jeter! I often wondered about this myself as I was raised in a Lutheran Church and so often, we recited the Apostles’ Creed. Yes, Jesus did go to sheol/hades according to Ephesians 4:8-10 and 1 Peter 3:18-20. There is no second chance for salvation after death/judgement: Luke 16:26 Jennifer Rothnie cf. Hebrews 9:27 "it is appointed unto men to die once, but after this the judment" + or - nothing. I.e. Hebrews 9:27 (Contemporary English Version) says "We die only once, and then we are judged."
Luke 23:42 states, “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.” Jesus went to Heaven upon his death. A dead person does not get a second chance.
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