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II Maccabees 12:39-46

#1 – nothing unclean, nothing with the stain of sin, will enter Heaven.

By this we know there has to be a transition from and world stained by sin to a pure, sinless state. (at a minimum, purgatory is a transitional phase)

Rev 21:27, “But nothing unclean shall enter it…” (The New Jerusalem = Heaven)

Mt 5:48, “You, therefore, must be perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect.”

#2 – even though our sins are forgiven, there is still punishment

Jesus died for our sins but he did not die to wipe out the consequences of those sins.

2 Sam 12:13-18, “David said to Nathan, ‘I have sinned against the Lord.’ And Nathan said to David, ‘The Lord also has put away your sin; you shall not die. Nevertheless, because by this deed you have utterly scorned the Lord, the child that is born to you shall die.’ And the Lord struck the child that Uriah’s wife bore to David, and it became sick…On the seventh day the child died.”

Also, isn’t this what absolution and indulgences are all about. We go to confession not just for forgiveness but, more importantly, to receive relief from the temporal punishment. (CCC 1424 …by the priest’s sacramental absolution God grants the penitent “pardon and peace.”)…be sure and see 1 John 1:9

#3 – there is a process through which the spirits of the “just” are “made perfect” and “saved, but only as through fire.”

Heb 12:22-23, “But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem…and to a judge who is God of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect…”

1 Cor 3:13-15, “…each man’s work will become manifest; for the Day [judgment day] will disclose it, because it will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done. If the work which any man has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward. If any man’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss, though he himself will be saved, but only as through fire.”

Where is this place that a man, after he dies, suffers loss, as through fire, but is still saved. Hell? No, once you’re in Hell, you don’t get out. Heaven? No, you don’t suffer loss in Heaven.

#4 – there is a place in the age to come where forgiveness can happen, and it is not Heaven or Hell.

Mt 12:32, “And whoever says a word against the Son of man will be forgiven; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come.”

Implies forgiveness in “the age to come”. Where can you go to be forgiven in the age to come? Heaven? You don’t need forgiveness. Hell? There is no forgiveness.