“For David did not ascend into the heavens” (Acts 2:34); “Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulchre [tomb] is with us unto this day” (Acts 2:29).
The apostle Peter plainly stated that David did not ascend into the heavens yet. The Bible teaches that righteous people don’t receive their rewards at death but at the second coming of the Lord when dead will be raised. “For the Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and then, He will reward each according to his works” (Matthew 16:27). And in Revelation it says, “Behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be” (Revelation 22:12).
At the Resurrection, the dead will be raised to receive their rewards “The Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout … and the dead in Christ shall rise … and so shall we ever be with the Lord” (1 Thessalonians 4:16, 17). “Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed— in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality” (1 Corinthians 15:51-53). The saints will receive the “crown of righteousness” at His appearing and not at death (2 Tim. 4:8).
After death a person: returns to dust (Psalms 104:29), knows nothing (Ecclesiastes 9:5), possesses no mental powers (Psalms 146:4), has nothing to do with anything on earth (Ecclesiastes 9:6), does not live (2 Kings 20:1), waits in the grave (Job 17:13), and continues not (Job 14:1, 2).
For this reason, the Bible says that “David did not ascend into the heavens.” King David is sleeping in the grave awaiting the resurrection. Jesus called the unconscious state of the dead “sleep” in John 11:11-14. The dead will sleep until the great day of the Lord at the end of the world (Job 14:12).
Check out our Bible Answers page for more information on a variety of topics.
In His service,