In my quest to fully understand Purgatory, I’ve found this passage that illustrates the best argument of this intermediary state after death.
Now Protestants will take the end of the passage out of context, not embrace the concept of what happens after you die. It must be taken into full context. Don’t let them fool you.
Lets look at the whole passage as Jesus taught it to us.
Matthew 5:21-26 (NRSV)
21 “You have heard that it was said to those of ancient times, ‘You shall not murder’; and ‘whoever murders shall be liable to judgment.’ 22 But I say to you that if you are angry with a brother or sister, you will be liable to judgment; and if you insult a brother or sister, you will be liable to the council; and if you say, ‘You fool,’ you will be liable to the hell of fire. 23 So when you are offering your gift at the altar, if you remember that your brother or sister has something against you, 24 leave your gift there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother or sister, and then come and offer your gift. 25 Come to terms quickly with your accuser while you are on the way to court with him, or your accuser may hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the guard, and you will be thrown into prison. 26 Truly I tell you, you will never get out until you have paid the last penny.
The judge here is God the Father. The guard could be Jesus or the Angels. Prison is purgatory. Its not hell, because after you’ve paid the last penny or purging and purifying of your sins, your released, and can enter into heaven. In hell, there’s no release, but eternal damnation in the inferno.
Father Mitch Pacwa who has a Doctor of Philosophy uses this verse also. After watching his debate, I was convinced myself now of purgatory.
Watch “Debate: Purgatory (Walter Martin vs Mitch Pacwa)” on YouTube
What’s your thoughts on this verse?