Just throwing out some ideas. At this point I like where Sean's is going with his understanding of what death means (spiritual separation). My Great-grandfather is dead (to me) because he is separated from me spiritually. Christ is not dead to me because he is joined to me via the Holy Spirit. My Great-grandfather is alive with Christ because he (his soul) is with Christ. So death is a spiritual separation or a separation of a soul from something or someone else. Death is always relative to something. One can be dead and alive, but not in the same sense. When one dies, he is separated from his body - but he is also separated from other people. He is dead to his (biological) living family and friends. If he is a Christian, he is alive with Christ. If he is not saved, he remains spiritually dead to God. Ironically, we are conceived as spiritually dead. We may be alive physically, and have some spiritual life relative to other souls we can communicate with, but we remain dead to the Spirit. Death is not the end of thought. We have eternal souls, therefore we remain eternally thinking souls. I don't believe Christ's physical death is the essential point of his atoning death for our sins. He was raised up with the exact same body, with the same wounds and piercings. Although it does seem Christ was separated from his body, this does not seem to be sufficient to say he died. It seems the atoning sacrifice was not simply a function of physical or biological death. The point of his death was to give us spiritual union with God. Although physical life was a part of the end picture, spiritual union with God is the main point of Christ's resurrection. So in order to justify our spiritual union with God, Christ's death must have been the same kind ours is through Adam - spiritual. It seems that the person of Christ of spiritually separated from the persons of God and the Holy Spirit. Maybe the body/mind issue is significant. The mind is the soul - separate from the brain - but our awareness seems to be linked to our physical brains. Brain injuries effect our ability to reason and understand. I think the physical brain acts as a limiter to our mental awareness. The brain handicaps us by linking us (soul) to the physical world. And when we suffer from brain damage - we loose awareness of our thoughts. I'm not sure if the brain/mind issue is import to the discussion. But I'm sure Christ's brain shut down and he did suffer a biological death. Maybe at that point in time, he also suffered real spiritual death too. (I suppose this is some sort of heresy. Please point me to the relevant Scripture so I can know the truth of the matter).