In the Old Testament the saints were not in an unconscious state while in the “paradise” section of the underworld. In Luke 16:22-31 Abraham was fully alert. Paul said, “For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better.” In II Corinthians 5:8 Paul said, “We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.” Then in Revelation 6:10 the souls of some martyrs cry out and ask God, “…How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?”
2 Corinthians 5:8 is one of the key passages that is used to prove that conditional immortality or soul sleep is incorrect.Can I commend the following articles on the Afterlife | Conditional Immortality, Soul Sleep and Annihilationism website to show that there is more than one view to this passage:
To depart and be with Christ : is Death Better by Far?
Absent from the body
Do the Saints Go to Heaven When They Die?: The Question Scripturally Consideredby Elder C. M. Keach
Comments On Philippians 1:20-25 by Dr. John H. Roller You might also like to look at the following on the importance of Conditional Immortality ( PDF download)
The importance of Conditional Immortality