Becca: I find it truly sad that you would think that your father who was a born again believer would be in a place like Purgatory.
BFHU: No need to be sad. Purgatory is a place where we are totally purified of all residual sin and reparation of sin, in order that we may enter into the Holy Presence of God. I want to be totally pure, don’t you? I don’t want to be a pile of dung for eternity that has been merely whitewashed, as Martin Luther opines.
It is a time when we, as St. Paul said,
Col 1:24 “Now I rejoice in what was suffered for you, and I fill up in my flesh what is still lacking in regard to Christ’s afflictions, for the sake of his body, which is the church.
Becca:The Bible is very clear when it states that “to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord” (2Cor.5:8).
BFHU:You will be shocked to know that you are actually misquoting scripture. No translation says what you have been taught it says. It does not make a doctrinal type statement that “to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord” The actual verse simply is making the statement that St. Paul is willing to be absent from his body (dead) because then he would be with his Lord.
2 Cor. 5:8 We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.
If I say I am flying out of LA tomorrow and going to New York, that statement does not absolutely rule out a stopover in Denver. The Bible is just not a book of systematic theology. Colossians is a letter to a church. Doctrine is not systematically stated, only alluded to. Mutally understood but unwritten doctrine underlies what St. Paul writes here.