This is an old concept and popular in Hindu religious teaching. It basically means that the soul is reborn in another body for a second go at life. Maybe in a different kind of species – some believe Divine punishment can cause a person to re-appear as a lower animal or insect. Going the other way, one may do well in life & reappear in a better time or place or class of society. Now reincarnation seems to be a popular thing that many refer to, even in Judaeo Christian cultures.
As a Bible student I wanted to know what Scripture says about reincarnation. Well, my search came up nearly empty. Even a determined look at current & past Biblical reference books are amazingly blank on the subject of reincarnation. It may well be that TRUTH comes from legitimate Scripture, which is the Bible of history. Reincarnation is not truth, so it is not found in the Bible. And the early church fathers (85 - 350 A.D.) such as Justin Martyr, Tatian, Athenagoras, Tertullian, and others all taught reincarnation is a false doctrine. Irenaeus said "R. is absurd".
So why would people go for a notion that says they can come back for a second try at life? It has to do with JUDGMENT. It is well known that the Bible and the Church (Protestant & Catholic) teach that God holds all accountable & has a serious & sober day for every soul at the end of their life. Revelation 20:12-13 is as blunt as a spoon. And for God to be Just & Fair, that judgment is MANDATORY & FINAL. People being cunning & devious by nature find excuses for the JUDGMENT problem. Reincarnation sweetens it by putting it off, or expecting a second chance. Now I know people believe what they want to believe, BUT what if reincarnation is only an illusion, or false hope? ? ;
THEN folks delay or reject the Salvation & promises of the New Covenant. They put more stock in the natural thought of Gurus & atheists, and insult the inspiration & hope of God’s Word. They live without the favor & blessing of God in a difficult world. They personally miss all the Divine goodies of this life, AND what has been prepared for them in glory. They face that Judgment Day totally unprepared and naked in the presence of a Holy God. Ecclesiastes 5:15 Then they have to eat that judgment that Jesus died to “cover” for them. And they create a blank space in the circle of their saved family members in Heaven. What a shame to forfeit all to such an “old bone” as reincarnation. “No road to perdition has ever been more thronged than that of false doctrine. Error is a shield over the conscience and a bandage over the eyes.” D.C. Hodge
As far as choosing non-Biblical thought (and lies of our adversary), the Scripture is not silent:
-- Proverbs 19:27 “Cease, my son, to hear the instruction that causeth to err from the words of
-- Ecclesiastes 11:3b “if a tree falls to the south or to the north, in the place where the tree falls,
there it will lie.
-- John 5:24 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears my word and believes him who sent me, has
eternal life; he does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life.” J. C. said that.
-- Colossians 2:8 “Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the
tradition of men, and after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.”
** Hebrews 9:27 “It is appointed unto men ONCE to die, but after this the judgment.”
-- H. Lindsell – Truth shall forever be on the scaffold, and wrong forever on the throne as long as
time shall last.
I totally believe all folks should do some homework to challenge their assumptions on the afterlife. A quality study Bible can often be had for about $2 at a thrift store. Of course, a Bible believing church will explain the case also. Choose Jesus and his Word, they are alive and ABLE to get folks on the right track. Reincarnation is dead, and only able to produce “Rude Surprises” (link 79). See also “New Age” link 56.
Other interesting titles: www.gospelnotes.net – index is link 1 * * F. J. Stone * *