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"A Space Between Death and the Resurrection," Alma 40:15-21

Alma 40:15-21

https://www.lds.org/scriptures/tg/resurrection?lang=eng

The New Testament, after the Resurrection of Christ, is replete with testimony by the apostles of the reality of that very thing.

I took a pause from this study to reflect over in John 6. At least twice within that passage, the phrase "the resurrection of the just" had been added back into the passage in the Joseph Smith Translation.

No man can come unto me, except he doeth the will of my Father who hath sent me. And this is the will of him who hath sent me, that ye receive the Son; for the Father beareth record of him; and he who receiveth the testimony, and doeth the will of him who sent me, I will raise up in the resurrection of the just. (JST - John 6:44)
Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up in the resurrection of the just at the last day. (John 6:54)
Why, among other doctrines, does the adversary or the world want to suppress the doctrine of the resurrection of the just? Because there is a difference between wickedness and  righteousness.

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These verses clarify the distinction between that first resurrection, which is the literal reuniting of body and spirit, and that temporary state between death and the resurrection wherein there is a temporary assignment of the righteous and wicked to states of peace or remorse, respectively. Alma is illustrating to his son that this temporary space between death and the resurrection, which had been termed by some as a "first resurrection" was not the same as that first resurrection of the all the righteous who lived before the resurrection of Christ.

It is interesting to see Alma's ambiguity on some points of doctrine. However, by the end of this passage of scripture, one thing is clear in his mind:
"...There is a space between death and the resurrection of the body, and a state of the soul in happiness or in misery until the time which is appointed of God that the dead shall come forth, and be reunited, both soul and body." (vs. 21)

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