Q. Thank you for all you do, I have learned so much from you. My question is this. How was it possible for Enoch and Elijah to go into the presence of God before their sin was paid for at the cross? I know there has to be an explanation, but I can’t figure this one out. Can you please help me to understand? Were they thrust forward in time somehow to the cross? That is the only thing my little mind can come up with. Thank You in advance for your help.
A. I’ve answered questions about Enoch and Elijah before but always in connection with the two witnesses. Yours concerns them being “taken into Heaven” before the cross. The simplest answer is that they went to the place of comfort in Sheol to await the cross, like Lazarus did (Luke 16:19-31).
But I think they also serve as a model of the Rapture, passing directly from this world into the next, since the Bible says a matter must be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses (Deut. 19:15). Also, one was technically a gentile (Enoch lived before Abraham when there were no “Jews”) and the other was Jewish, so together they make a good sample of the Church (Gal. 3:28).
Finally, remember that special provision was made for Isaiah to stand in the presence of God at the time of his calling, 750 years BC.
“Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the LORD Almighty.”
Then one of the seraphs flew to me with a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from the altar. With it he touched my mouth and said, “See, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.” (Isaiah 6:5-7)
Maybe something similar happened with Enoch and Elijah. If so, they would be exceptions to the principle that no one could enter heaven until the Lord sprinkled His blood on the altar there just as the widow of Nain’s son (Luke 7:11-15), the daughter of Jairus (Luke 8:50-55), and at least 6 others others were exceptions to the principle that it is given for man to die once and then to face judgment (Hebrews 9:27).