Where did Old Testament believers go when they died?

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Heaven is the eternal home of the people of God. The Apostle Paul had the confident expectation that when he died he would be with the Lord (cf. 2 Cor. 5:8; Phil. 1:23), but what happened to Old Testament believers when they died? This question has resulted in interesting discussions and varying views. In this post I will simply introduce three views with brief comments concerning my view.

View 1: Soul Sleep
This view teaches that when an OT believer died their soul entered into a state of rest or “sleep”. This condition was temporary and lasted until the resurrection of Christ; or as most teach it will last until the believer’s future resurrection at the time of Christ’s return. This is the doctrine of “soul sleep”. Seventh Day Adventists share variations of this view and it has never gained much acceptance in the history of the church. I believe this view ought to be rejected (more on this doctrine in a future post). Continue reading Where did Old Testament believers go when they died?