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Death will not prevail over Jesus' church.  Death will be abolished:

For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet. 26 The last enemy that will be abolished is death. For He has put all things in subjection under His feet..."  1 Corinthians 15:25-27  (NAS) 

Remember Jesus' saying in Matthew 16:18:

"...upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades* shall not overpower it." Matthew 16:18 (NAS)

Those that are being held by the gates of Hades* can be set free through their belief in and obedience to Jesus and His teachings (see Lesson 1).  The gates of Hades* will not prevail against the church that belongs to Christ.

*literally the place of the unseen dead.

Some Would Fall Away

Even though the gates of Hades would not overpower Jesus' church, the Bible foretold that some of the disciples would fall away and some would become false teachers. The apostle Peter says:

"But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will also be false teachers among you, who will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing swift destruction upon themselves." 2 Peter 2:1 (NAS)

Jesus said: "But all these things are merely the beginning of birth pangs. "Then they will deliver you to tribulation, and will kill you, and you will be hated by all nations on account of My name. And at that time many will fall away and will deliver up one another and hate one another. "And many false prophets will arise, and will mislead many. "And because lawlessness is increased, most people's love will grow cold. "But the one who endures to the end, he shall be saved."  Matthew 24:8-13 (NAS)

So Hold Fast to What is Taught

Jesus and His apostles warned his followers to hold fast to only their teachings:

1 Corinthians 15:2 " which also you are saved, if you hold fast the word which I preached to you, unless you believed in vain." (NAS)

"For we have become partakers of Christ, if we hold fast the beginning of our assurance firm until the end;" Hebrew 3:14 (NAS)

"Since then we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession." Hebrews 10:23 (NAS)

"Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful;" Hebrews 4:14 (NAS)

"For this reason we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, lest we drift away from it. For if the word spoken through angels proved unalterable, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompense, how shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation? After it was at the first spoken through the Lord, it was confirmed to us by those who heard," Hebrews 2:1-3 (NAS)

"Jesus therefore was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, "If you abide in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine;" John 8:31 (NAS)

"Anyone who goes too far and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God; the one who abides in the teaching, he has both the Father and the Son." II John 1:9  (NAS)

"If anyone thinks he is a prophet or spiritual, let him recognize that the things which I write to you are the Lord's commandment."  1 Corinthians 14:37 (NAS)

"Now these things, brethren, I have figuratively applied to myself and Apollos for your sakes, that in us you might learn not to exceed what is written, in order that no one of you might become arrogant in behalf of one against the other." 1 Corinthians 4:6 (NAS)

"I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by His appearing and His kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great patience and instruction.  For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires; and will turn away their ears from the truth, and will turn aside to myths. 2 Timothy 4:1-4 (NAS)

How do you feel about holding fast to the words of Jesus and His apostles recorded in the Bible?  Click on the next question to continue...

Question 20