RCCG Sunday School TEACHER’s Manual For August 8, 2021 Lesson 49: Topic – There Is No Purgatory
TOPIC: There Is No Purgatory
OPENING PRAYER: Father, help me to live my life for you. Let me reign with you after death
MEMORY VERSE: “And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:” – Hebrews 9:27
BIBLE PASSAGE: 2 Corinthians 5:6-8 KJV
6 Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord:
7 (For we walk by faith, not by sight:)
8 We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.
LESSON INTRODUCTION: Some church denominations believe that all who die in God’s grace and friendship but still imperfectly purified are indeed assured of their eternal salvation but will undergo the process of purification which they call purgatory, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of heaven. According to them, Purgatory is also a place or condition of temporal punishment for those who, departing this life in God’s grace, are not entirely free from forgivable faults, or have not fully paid the price due to their transgressions. Is this doctrine of purgatory in agreement with the bible? Absolutely not!
TEXT REVIEW: 2 Corinthians 5:6-8
The scripture does not have support for purgatory in any sense. The true position of the scripture is to either be in the body or to be with the Lord. There is no vacuum or gap. 2Cor. 5:6, 8. A look at the memory verse indicates that there is no vacuum after death, Heb. 9:27.
LESSON OUTLINE 1: WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT PURGATORY?
The biblical passages wrongly referred to as basis for purgatory are:
i. 1 Cor.3:15; 1 Pet. 1:7. These scriptures clearly speak about the work that shall stand the test of fire and be rewarded and those that shall not be able to stand
ii. 1Cor.3:11-15. This scripture supports believers in Christ who make it to Heaven and would be rewarded according to the value of their works.
ii. The Bible mentioned in Heb. 9:27 that after death comes the judgement. Therefore, the ‘purifying fire” is referred to as the judgement seat of Christ where work will be judged. 2 Cor. 5:10
iv. The “fire” in this context is symbolic of motive or objectives behind every work of the believers.
v. The sinners will go straight to hell. Psalms 9:17. The wicked shall be turned to hell. That is the destination of sinners who refused to repent alive
vi. In the expression, “it shall not be forgiven him neither in this world, neither in the world to come”, the expression “in the world to come”, means among
Jew that, “it will never be done”
vii. God’s wrath shall overtake sinners who refuse to genuinely repent their sins before death. Psalms 9:17; Matt. 13:49-50
CLASS ACTIVITY 1: Why do you think that anyone would wish to repent after death?
LESSON OUTLINE 2: DEBUNKING THE WRONG CONCEPT
i. Purgatory like many other heretic belief is based on misunderstanding of the nature of Christ’ sacrifice and of the scripture.
ii. Jesus’ sacrifice for sinners is a once and for all sacrifice. The sacrifice was perfect and absolute. Heb. 7:27.
iii. Those who believe in purgatory fail to believe that the work of salvation needs no additional contribution to what Christ has done. Eph. 2:8-9.
iv. They fail to understand that there is no need for other cleansing in addition to the one Christ has done with His blood. 1 John 1:7-9.
v. They fail to believe that praying for the dead for the forgiveness of their sins is baseless because Jesus by His death, has paid the penalty for all our sins. John 1:1,14.
vi. Jesus died for our sins and paid the price once and for all. 1 Cor. 15:3.
vii. Jesus atoned for our sins, therefore, there is no need for any purgatory again. 1 John 2:2; Rom. 5:8; Isaiah 53:5.
viii. The belief that man would not suffer for his sin after death has no basis in the Bible. It is also contrary to the true biblical teaching on salvation.
CLASS ACTIVITY 2: identify any other wrong teaching which are contradictory to the Bible.
SUMMARY: There is no purgatory for cleansing of sins after death.
CONCLUSION: There is no basis for purgatory in the Bible. Therefore, make your ways right before you die.
EVALUATION: Why is purgatory heretic?
CLOSING PRAYER: Father, set free all your children who have fallen victim of heretic doctrines
ASSIGNMENT: Find reasons why people believe false and heretic teachings.