A number of people that I've known, have used the following scripture as a proof text:
Ephesians 4:8 Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.
They say that Jesus took the people who were in the "good side of hell", and brought them to heaven, and use that scripture to prove it. (i.e. they believe paradise was originally in hell, but in a good part, like the Greek mythology of Elysian Fields, but after Jesus rose from the dead, and ascended, that he took those in the paradise of hell, to the paradise of heaven). I also had believed that for years, since that is what I was taught. However, that scripture doesn't prove that. Paradise was Not captivity. The Jews went into captivity, and it was not a good thing. So to say that Noah, Abraham, Moses, David, and Daniel went into captivity when they died, is very strange. To say that Pharaoh went into captivity when he died, makes more sense. If that's not enough, then to say that when Jesus took, e.g. Noah, Abraham, Moses, etc. to heaven, he was actually leading them captive.That is terrible. Taking someone to heaven is certainly not leading them captive. People are not captive in heaven. Anyway, that is the opposite of the way that Jesus treats captive people:
Luke 4:18 The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,
Jesus wants to deliver captives, not to lead them into further captivity.Is that scripture, Ephesians 4:8 talking about celestial creatures, instead? as in:
Colossians 2:15 And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it.
What do you think?
Why would Aaron, and later, Moses, both have to go up on top of a mountain to die, if they were to then descend into the lower parts of the earth?Moreover, if the teaching that those in the paradise in hell, could not yet got to heaven, because Jesus had not yet been crucified, then how was Elijah able to go to heaven, with his body, to boot?Also, the rich man saw Lazarus in Abraham's actual bosom, like John did with Jesus, at the last supper - the "Christian" variant of Elysian Fields is not a place named, "Abraham's Bosom", since the real Abraham spoke to the rich man, not some place spoke to him.Also, if Stephen could see into heaven, when they stoned him, then why couldn't the LORD have allowed the rich man to also see into heaven, so that Jesus could tell us about it?