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I recently saw a billboard proclaiming "After you die, you will meet God"

What is the biblical basis for this?

My first thought, was that according to my understanding of Christianity, those headed down would never meet God

My Second thought was, I thought was Saint Peter's job, to meet the heaven bound at the gates.

What is the biblical basis for all people meeting God when they die?

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    There is strong biblical support for the idea that everyone will be judged by God after death, and so meet him in that sense. – DJClayworth Aug 17 '18 at 14:52
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    @DJClayworth with no disrespect intended and skirting the obvious conflicts, Santa judges each child as good or bad, yet none of these children meet the real Santa, though they may meet one Santa's helpers. So judging <> meeting. – James Jenkins Aug 17 '18 at 15:07
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    Great question. I think it is perhaps a simplistic statement meant to highlight judgment, not that you actually appear before god at the moment of death. But, I'd bet plenty of common believers do believe it. I look forward to good answers. – fredsbend Aug 17 '18 at 17:55
  • I was going to up-vote your question until I read your @DJClayworth response introducing Santa as relevant to serious discussion. This clouds things considerably for me – AFL Aug 23 '18 at 4:04
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The short answer (from the Bible) is that after a person dies, they await the resurrection when they will face judgment. Nobody is excused.

Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment, so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him. (Hebrews 9:27–28)

There are two resurrections, of the righteous and the unrighteous. That covers everybody. We are judged on what we did while we were alive:

And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books. (Revelation 20:12)

The writer of the book of Ecclesiastes summed up the meaning of life this way:

For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil. (Ecclesiastes 12:14)

There is no biblical basis for thinking Saint Peter is standing at the gates of heaven to either allow or deny access. It's a charming thought, but not quite right!

  • Thank you for your answer, as I don't see where it has already been addressed I have posted a new question What is the biblical basis for seeing Saint Peter at the gates of heaven? – James Jenkins Aug 21 '18 at 14:34
  • @James Jenkins - Appreciate the up-vote and have looked at your new question. However, I'm not a Catholic so I am unable to answer . The answers you've got so far are interesting, though. – Lesley Aug 21 '18 at 15:41
  • I am not a Catholic either, someone added that tag I removed it. – James Jenkins Aug 21 '18 at 22:05
  • @James Jenkins - Oh, that's interesting. I see you already have three answers giving the Catholic view. Are you now actively seeking Protestant input as well? – Lesley Aug 22 '18 at 10:33
  • @JamesJenkins - Problem with that is Protestants don't believe Peter will be at the gates of heaven to let folks in, so they can't answer that question. Since your new question is asking for the biblical basis to support that view, and not how Protestants would disprove it, then that may be why the Catholic tag was put there. – Lesley Aug 22 '18 at 11:02
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Revelation 1:7 New International Version (NIV)

“Look, he is coming with the clouds,” and “every eye will see him, even those who pierced him”; and all peoples on earth “will mourn because of him.” So shall it be! Amen.

This verse in Revelation does not prove that everyone throughout history will see God, but that everyone who is alive when Jesus returns will see Jesus, who is God the Son. The next verse is clearer:

Revelation 20:12 (KJV) And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

Of course, it is good to hear it from the Lord himself:

Matthew 25:31-46 New International Version (NIV) The Sheep and the Goats 31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. 32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.

34 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’

44 “They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’

45 “He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’

46 “Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.”

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There are basically two kinds of people who are alive on earth, the living and the dead.

The living are believers in what God said about Christ Jesus. They have the deposit of the Spirit. They have been born again. For those people, to die is to leave the body and be present with Christ.

We are confident, I [Paul] say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord. 2 Cor 5:8

For to me [Paul] to live is Christ, and to die is gain. Phl 2:1

And if I [Jesus] go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. Jhn 14:3

The dead are people who have not heard of Christ who have not been born again. For these people, to die is to await the great white throne judgment of God where they appear.

And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. Rev 20:12-13

So, it is true that after a person dies they will meet God.

PS. The billboard was trying to convince the dead on earth to be born again because they were taught that once you are dead you do not have a second chance to believe what God says. The bible, however, says this about the great white throne judgment.

The books are opened and the book of life is opened. The dead are judged by their works in the books. All will fail because works are as filthy rags before God.

Then what happens? Death and hell are cast into the lake of fire which is the second death. And the dead who were present?

And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire. Rev 20:15

Can they not as we have done here say I'm a sinner, my works born of my pride mean zero, I repent, I believe you God?

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Revelation, chapter 21, verses 3 and 4 (KJV):

  1. And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.

  2. And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.

i.e., every saved person will meet God in person (at least once) in the Heaven.

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