Heaven Collection BV4831 .B4 1765

78 THE CHARACTER, &C. bodies. Is not so much implied when John says, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word qf God ?(q) When Christ says, Fear not them that kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul,(r) does it not plainly imply, that when wicked men have killed our bodies, that is, have separated the souls from them, yet the souls are still alive ? The soul of Christ was alive when his body was dead, and therefore so shall be ours too. This appears by his words to the thief, To-day shalt thou be with me in paradise ; and also by his voice on the cross, Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit.(s) If the spirits of those that were disobedient in the days qf Noah were in prison,(t) that is, in a living and suffering state; then certainly the separate spirits of the just are in an opposite con- dition of happiness. Therefore, faithful souls shall no sooner leave their prisons of flesh, but angels will be their convoy ; Christ, with all the perfected spirits of the just, will be their companions ; heaven will be their residence, and God their happiness. When such die, they may boldly and believingly say, as Stephen, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit ! and commend it, as Christ did, into a Father's hands. (q) Rev. vi. 9. (r) Matt. x. 28. (s) Luke xxiii. 46. (t) 1 Pet. iii. 19, 20.