No man has ascended to heaven before Jesus? JW’s say “Enoch was apparently in mortal danger when “God took him.” (Genesis 5:24) Jehovah did not allow his faithful prophet to suffer at the hands of rabid enemies. According to the apostle Paul, “Enoch was transferred so as not to see death.” (Hebrews 11:5) Many say that Enoch did not die—that God took him to heaven, where he kept on living. However, Jesus plainly stated: “No man has ascended into heaven but he that descended from heaven, the Son of man.”
Let us see the verse once again:
John 3:9-13 In answer Nic·o·de´mus said to him: “How can these things come about?” 10 In answer Jesus said to him: “Are you a teacher of Israel and yet do not know these things? 11 Most truly I say to you, What we know we speak and what we have seen we bear witness of, but YOU people do not receive the witness we give. 12 If I have told YOU earthly things and yet YOU do not believe, how will YOU believe if I tell YOU heavenly things? 13 Moreover, no man has ascended into heaven but he that descended from heaven, the Son of man.
Jesus is talking with Nicodemus & explaining him about the birth from above. Jesus simply says that no man hath ascended up to heaven (to see and tell of these things) but the Son of Man (Jesus).
Jesus was alluding to the scripture in Deut 30:12.
Deut 30:12 It is not in the heavens, so as to result in saying, ‘Who will ascend for us into the heavens and get it for us, that he may let us hear it that we may do it?
Who will ascend for us into the heavens and get it for us, that he may let us hear it that we may do it? The answer is, “No man has ascended into heaven [to get it for us] but he [Jesus] that descended from heaven. Therefore, in the context of John 3:12-13, Jesus is using an idiomatic phrase in which He is saying that no one has gone to heaven and come back "come down from heaven," - to tell them what heaven is like other than Him! John 3:13 does not say that no person before Jesus has gone to heaven.
Did Moses go to heaven? Was Moses resurrected?
Jude 9 But when Mi´cha·el the archangel had a difference with the Devil and was disputing about Moses’ body
Matthew 17:3, 4 And, look! there appeared to them Moses and E·li´jah, conversing with him.
In Jude, we find Michael disputing about Moses’ body (this is probably soon after his death as recorded in Deuteronomy 34:5, 6). Later, Moses & Elijah appears to Jesus on the mount of Transfiguration (Matthew 17:1-9, Mark 9:1-10; Luke 9:32).
In 2 Kings 2:1,11, We know Jehovah took Elijah up to heaven, never says he died.
2 Kings 2: 1, 11 And it came about that when Jehovah was to take E·li´jah in a windstorm up to the heavens, E·li´jah and E·li´sha proceeded to go from Gil´gal. And it came about that as they were walking along, speaking as they walked, why, look! a fiery war chariot and fiery horses, and they proceeded to make a separation between them both; and E·li´jah went ascending in the windstorm to the heavens.
However JW's say: "but a number of years after his ascension in the windstorm Elijah, he was still alive and active as a prophet, this time to the king of Judah. Because of the wicked course taken by King Jehoram of Judah, Elijah writes him a letter expressing Jehovah’s condemnation as recorded in -2 Ch 21:12-15".
There is no indication that Elijah went up to heaven before he sent the letter to King Jehoram of Judah. We read at 1 Kings 22:50 and 2 Kings 1:17 that Jehoram became King of Judah two years before a different King Jehoram became king of Israel. It wasn't until the NEXT chapter at 2 Kings 2:11 (during the reign of this other King Jehoram of Israel) that we read of Elijah's ascension into heaven.
It is important to note that nowhere does the Bible give a specific year for Elijah's translation into heaven. We only know that it happened sometime during the reign of King Jehoram of Israel. Since King Jehoram of Judah (who received the letter from Elijah) had already been reigning two years by the time King Jehoram of Israel took the throne, Elijah could have easily sent his letter to King Jehoram of Judah before his ascension into heaven at 2 Kings 2:11.
2 Chronicles 21:19 notes that Jehoram of Judah began to experience the effects of the condemning words in Elijah's letter two years before he died in the eighth year of his reign, so it is reasonable to conclude that Elijah's letter and his subsequent translation to heaven occurred sometime between Jehoram of Judah's second to sixth year of reign.
Furthermore, if Elijah was to reappear on earth and resume his ministry after ascending into heaven for a few years, one would have to question why Elijah spoke of being "taken from" his apprentice Elisha and why he would have gone to the effort of requesting for Elisha a "double portion" of his spirit upon leaving. Such commitment to Elisha would hardly seem relevant if Elijah was to resume his work on earth only a few years after the whirlwind incident. (Source: 4witness)
Therefore, remember that there were two Jehorams - one was the king of Israel and the other the King of Judah. The letter to this Jehoram was written before Elijah was taken to heaven.
JW's say Elijah was taken up to heaven meant that he was taken only up into the earth’s atmosphere “Sky” just like Phillip. However in Acts 1:9-11, Jesus “was received up into the sky”. No doubt Jesus surpassed the Sky (i.e earth’s atmosphere) into heaven where God dwells. And finally Elijah and Moses appearing to Jesus in the new testament confirms where Elijah was really taken to; heaven - God's dwelling place.
How about Moses? Was that a vision only as some argue from Matt 17:9?
Matthew 17:1-9 While he was yet speaking, look! a bright cloud overshadowed them, and, look! a voice out of the cloud, saying: “This is my Son, the beloved, whom I have approved; listen to him.” 6 At hearing this the disciples fell upon their faces and became very much afraid. 7 Then Jesus came near and, touching them, said: “Get up and have no fear.” 8 When they raised their eyes, they saw no one but Jesus himself only. 9 And as they were descending from the mountain, Jesus commanded them, saying: “Tell the vision to no one until the Son of man is raised up from the dead.”
Vision here means sight or what they saw. This is proved by Acts 1:9.
Acts 1:9-11 And after he had said these things, while they were looking on, he was lifted up and a cloud caught him up from their vision.
The vision is the actual sight is confirmed by Mark 9-10:
Mark 9:1-10 Suddenly, however, they looked around and saw no one with them any longer, except Jesus alone.9 As they were coming down out of the mountain, he expressly ordered them not to relate to anybody what they saw, until after the Son of man had risen from the dead. 10 And they took the word to heart, but discussed among themselves what this rising from the dead meant.
Finally in Luke 9:32 confirms that they were fully awake when they saw Moses and Elijah.
Luke 9:32 Now Peter and those with him were weighed down with sleep; but when they got fully awake they saw his glory and the two men standing with him.
Moses & Elijah was real just as Jesus was real. One was translated without tasting death. Moses was resurrected by Michael. And there is anoter person who was translated without tasting death an it was Enoch:
Gen 5:24 And E´noch kept walking with the [true] God. Then he was no more, for God took him.
Heb 11:5 By faith E´noch was transferred so as not to see death, and he was nowhere to be found because God had transferred him; for before his transference he had the witness that he had pleased God well
Never says he died!!!!!
However, Jw say, “So, what happened to Enoch? His being “transferred so as not to see death” may mean that God put him in a prophetic trance and then terminated his life while he was in that state. Under such circumstances, Enoch would not experience the pangs of death. Then “he was nowhere to be found,” apparently because Jehovah disposed of his body, even as he disposed of Moses’ body.—Deuteronomy 34:5, 6.
There is absolutely no indication in scriptures where God would put a person into a prophetic trance and then terminate his life while he was in that state. This is highly unbiblical. This teaching has been propped due to their belief that no one can go to heaven, unless they are spirit creatures void of flesh. See: Flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of heaven?