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I Tell You The Truth Today
If I said to you, "I tell you the truth today," would you be able to understand what I'm saying? Of course you would. It's a plain and simple statement that even a child could understand.
If I then said, "I tell you the truth today, you will be with me at the celebration" (that I have just spent over 3 years telling people is coming in the future, after I return) would you be able to understand what I'm saying? Of course you would. That too is a plain and simple statement that even a child could understand. The words of promise spoken today are about fulfilling that promise in a future time that obviously is not today.
English translations of the Holy Scriptures use punctuation, specifically, commas, that did not exist in the original Hebrew and Greek. Translators inserted commas where they decided to put them, based upon their own ideas and interpretations of the Scriptures. In most cases, they are correct. In a few cases, they are not correct.
For example, the King James Version (as well as almost every other version ever since) translators believed in the un-Biblical idea of the dead being alive, so it was natural for them to want to place a comma in the Words of Jesus Christ where, first of all, there wasn't one (although there was almost certainly a pause when He spoke - but not where the translators put it), and secondly which made it incorrectly seem that Christ was saying, in Luke 23:43 (the capitalization of "To day" is not found in the actual Scriptures either), "Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise," rather than what He actually said, which was, in translation, "Verily I say unto thee today (pause) shalt thou be with me in paradise," or in modern English with a comma placed where Christ actually paused (in keeping with all of His other teachings about death and resurrection), "I say to you today, you will be with me in Paradise." Christ said to that man, that day, that he would be with Christ in Paradise in the future.
All Of The Dead Are Dead, Awaiting Their Future Resurrection
No where in the Holy Scriptures does it say that the dead are alive. For now, the dead are dead - in a peaceful oblivion in which there is no consciousness or activity.
"9:5 For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not any thing, neither have they any more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten." (Ecclesiastes 9:5 KJV)
The actual Holy Scriptures routinely refer to death as sleep, not just because death and sleep both involve unconsciousness, but because both are a state of being from which people awaken (just as Christ did after His three days and three nights dead in the Tomb - Christ was in the Tomb that same day, not in Paradise with the man to whom He made the promise about the future). According to God's plan, some will be resurrected as spirit on the day of Christ's return (e.g. 1 Corinthians 15:50-54), while others will be resurrected physical at the end of the 1,000 years (i.e. Revelation 20:5, Ezekiel 37:6). But all of the dead are now dead.
Those on the day of Christ's return:
"15:50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.
All of the rest of humanity 1,000 years later:
"20:5 But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished." (Revelation 20:5 KJV)
The transfiguration of Christ, a vision in which Moses (see The Valley of Moses' Grave) and Elijah (see Where Did Elijah Go?) were seen in the future Kingdom of God (the same Paradise that Christ described to the man when He said "you will be with me in Paradise") was describing the future, after Christ's return - it was not already happening there on earth, where the Kingdom of God will be (as the vision plainly described) that day. That is what The Gospel of The Kingdom of God is all about.
"17:1 And after six days Jesus taketh Peter, James, and John his brother, and bringeth them up into an high mountain apart, 17:2 And was transfigured before them: and his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light. 17:3 And, behold, there appeared unto them Moses and Elias talking with him.
Fact Finder: Where did the false "rapture" idea come from? Why didn't the idea even exist until after the 1800s?