Are There Three Groups Which Are Resurrected?

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Hi G____,
Thank you for your question.
You ask:

No, there are not “three categories of people.” There are only two categories; the called and the chosen. All men are God’s called, but few are His chosen. The chosen are the sheep in this particular parable, and the called are the goats in this parable. Mat 25:31 includes the first and second resurrections, but verse 41 is the second resurrection exclusively. The only way you could claim three categories is if you include Christ’s resurrection as the head of His church as a category of its own, and these verses begin with Christ, already on His throne, judging the only two categories left; the “few chosen… sheep” and the “many called… goats.”
You must understand that the way Christ spoke, and the way scripture is written are both alike. Neither Christ’s words nor the rest of scripture are written in a way that the average man on the street can receive. We are plainly told:

1Co 2:7  But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory:
1Co 2:13  Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.
1Co 2:14  But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

Here is an example of Christ talking to “the natural man” who “believes on Him” but is “unable to receive” what Christ is saying. I do not mean that he does not physically hear, what I mean and what Christ means, is that they cannot understand what he is saying even though they think they do understand.

Joh 8:30  As he spake these words, many believed on him.
Joh 8:31  Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed;
Joh 8:43  Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word.

So Christ, and scripture are written in a way that is intended to keep “the mysteries of the kingdom of God… hidden” from the multitudes who come to Christ. They are written in a way that only those who are given a hunger for that Truth, and are given eyes to see and ears to hear, will be able to receive.

Mat 13:10  And the disciples came, and said unto him, Why speakest thou unto them [ the multitude to whom Christ spoke] in parables?
Mat 13:11  He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given.

God simply is not granting, at this time, the multitudes of Christianity “to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God.” It is all in parables which they think they understand when, in reality it is all in “words which man’s wisdom does not teach,” and which “the natural man cannot receive” (1Co 2:13).
These verses in Mat 25 are a perfect example of that. The sheep are the chosen, and they will be in the first resurrection. But these verses, by themselves, do not make that clear to the natural man. These verses actually serve to hide that fact by making it appear as if the sheep are raised with the goats and are judged at the very same time. This is all part of the design of scripture which is intended to cause the “many called” to fall backward and be broken and snared and taken (Isa 28:13). Of course Mat 25:31 does not say that it is written according to that principle revealed in Isa 28:13, but Isa 28:13 tells us that it is. So Mat 25:31 is written to deliberately sound as if there is only one resurrection for both the sheep and the goats. These verses in Mat 25 really do seem to say that those who enter into the kingdom first are resurrected at the same time as those who enter in later. Here are those verses.

Mat 25:31  When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory:
Mat 25:32  And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats:
Mat 25:33  And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.
Mat 25:34  Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:
Mat 25:35  For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:
Mat 25:36  Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.
Mat 25:37  Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink?
Mat 25:38  When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee?
Mat 25:39  Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?
Mat 25:40  And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
Mat 25:41  Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:
Mat 25:42  For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink:
Mat 25:43  I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.
Mat 25:44  Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?
Mat 25:45  Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.
Mat 25:46  And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.

When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory:” When exactly is this? How long does the Son of man sit on the throne of His glory? Neither of those questions is answered in this parable simply because they are following the principle which is laid down in the following verses which explain how Christ spoke; and they also explain how all of scripture is written:

Isa 28:10  For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little:
Isa 28:11  For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people.
Isa 28:12  To whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: yet they would not hear.
Isa 28:13  But the word of the LORD was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little; that they might go, and fall backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken

We all “live by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God” (Mat 4:4), and we all “fall backward, are broken and snared and taken” first, before we mature to the point of understanding that God’s Word is intentionally written “line upon line and precept upon precept, here a little, and there a little,” so that “carnal… babes in Christ” (1Co 3:1-4) cannot hear and understand Christ’s words.

1Co 3:1  And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ.
1Co 3:2  I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able.
1Co 3:3  For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?
1Co 3:4  For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal?

So the words above in Isa 28:10 – 13, are preceded by this verse:

Isa 28:9  Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts.

That is why the thousand years that separate the sheep, who inherit the kingdom, from the goats which are cast into the lake of fire, is not mentioned here in Mat 25. “All in Adam” will one day be “in Christ,” but we have to go to other parts of scripture which do give us the chronological order of the sheep who inherit the kingdom versus the goats who are “cast into the lake of fire prepared for the devil and his angels.” Here is one such verse, which accords with many others which tell us that it is the “overcomers” who “inherit the kingdom.”

1Co 15:22  For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.
1Co 15:23  But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they [ the group] that are Christ’s at his coming.
1Co 15:24  Then cometh the end [ group], when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power.

What transpires between those who “are Christ’s at His coming,” and “the [ group at] the end?” When is this end? We have to go to another “line and precept” to find that out:

Rev 20:1  And [ at the beginning of the thousand years] I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand.
Rev 20:2  And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years,
Rev 20:3  And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season.
Rev 20:4  And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and [ I saw] the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received [ his] mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.
Rev 20:5  But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This [ is] the first resurrection.
Rev 20:6  Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.
Rev 20:7  And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,
Rev 20:8  And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom [ is] as the sand of the sea.
Rev 20:9  And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.
Rev 20:10  And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.

That is the lake of fire which will purify all the goats of Mat 25:31. “Fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them” is “the destruction of death” because it is the annihilation of all flesh and the beginning of the salvation of all men of all time. Death cannot be destroyed as long as human babies are being born, and this brings the disease of dying flesh and blood to its predestined end.

1Co 15:25  For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet.
1Co 15:26  The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.

The sheep who were resurrected one thousand years earlier will now be in a position to show mercy to all who placed the praise of men above the praise of God. Let us be grateful and humbled at what has been sacrificed for our sakes.

Rom 11:30  For as ye in times past have not believed God, yet have now obtained mercy through their unbelief:
Rom 11:31  Even so have these also now not believed, that through your mercy they also may obtain mercy.
Rom 11:32 For God hath concluded them all in unbelief, that he might have mercy upon all.

There they are. There are only two groups; the believers and the unbelievers. The sheep and the goats. I hope this has served to make that clear for you.

Your brother in Christ,
Mike

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