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DarrenJClark

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  1. Your question makes me think you do not understand what conditional immortality is. The label conditional immortality applies to the biblical teaching that human immortality is conditional on God. The following is from the Rethinking Hell website. "God alone possesses immortality innately and therefore any other being who is immortal (imperishable, deathless) is so extrinsically, that is, as the result of a positive act of God. No other being, human or otherwise, whether by creation or resurrection, possesses immortality innately but only as God’s specific gift. Immortality is a gift bestowed by God upon his children. To receive this crown, a person must belong to Christ. Such is the condition of this conditional immortality. And this conditionalist view is evangelical insofar as it is understood and articulated within a framework of evangelical Christian orthodoxy." "From cover to cover the Bible indicates that immortality and everlasting life are gifts given by God only to his people. In Genesis 3:22-23 God banished Adam and Eve from the garden so that, without access to the Tree of Life, they would not live forever. In the imagery of Revelation 2:7 and Revelation 22:14, only believers will have access to the Tree of Life as inhabitants of paradise, the New Jerusalem. The hope of immortality was lost in the fall, but 2 Timothy 1:10 says life and immortality were brought to light through the gospel. According to 1 Corinthians 15:50-53 believers in Jesus Christ will be clothed with immortality so that they can inherit the kingdom of God. The lost will not be granted immortality and will therefore not live forever. No wonder John 3:16 says those who do not believe will perish, and Romans 6:23 says the wages of sin is death." Since unbelievers are not innately immortal they will die completely when they suffer the final punishment by God. Evangelical conditionalism does not teach that unbelievers "conditionally remain in Hell" so asking me how long sinners will be in hell conditionally is irrelevant.
  2. Two points. 1, A central Christian doctrine is that the resurrection of the righteous and the unrighteous at the end of this age will be a full embodied resurrection. The traditional view of hell holds that the wicked go to hell fully embodied. Your view of just the human spirit being tortured in hell is even more an outlier version of hell than mine is. At least I have historical examples of Christian theologian I can appeal to as evidence that conditionalism was held by some early church fathers and other theologians throughout history. Do you know of any theologians who have held to your view? I ask because I would read them as see what they say. 2, The Bible nowhere states that the human spirit is immortal. What verse do you have in mind that support your view of immortal human spirits?
  3. I appreciate your effort in reading and responding. Yes, and eternal fire that destroys that which I throw into it. How would you know, unless you read his thesis. If not then a cavalier dismissal is a non-argument. The point I was making is that even in Rev 20:10 we find John drawing on the OT. I never see people acknowledging this, let alone examining what it means. I guess if people have decided before examining the evidence then they are just going to end where they started. Conditionalism and annihilationism go back to the early church fathers. There are ample examples of conditionalists in the early Baptists and the 1800-1900s. Conditionalism is a minority view but hardly a new branch of theology. People who claim it is don know their history. Your experience of Baptists is limited. I know many who are annihilationists. Many of them are in Australia but there are a number of them hailing from the US. All of them hold to the core doctrines considered important for salvation and like many traditionalists (on the question of hell) do not think the doctrine of hell is a salvation issue. Even the scholar Robert Peterson, an avid opponent of conditionalism who specialized in defending the traditional view of hell, argues conditionalism is not necessarily a heresy. There is a jump in logic here. Rejecting the doctrine of eternal conscious torment does not equate to not believing the straightforward doctrines taught in the Bible anymore. "The conditionalism of eternal punishment" This is a weird way of referring to conditionalism. It make me wonder whether you understand the view you reject. "is outside of what the Bible states." Well, you are going to have to demonstrate this, but I am sure you will address my exegetical arguments below. My point was not clear. Many of the authors of those commentaries hold to the traditional view of hell. I use their own observations of the text to help compose form my own exegesis. Surprisingly, often when they are not thinking of the hell debate they jut exegete the text in a way that conditionalists do. Dude, you don't have to be a conditionalist to make the comments I did. Plenty of traditionalist commentators make the same observations. I consulted several of them while writing my response. Besides, even if there is an upper and a lower region that is still set in Hades and speaks to the intermediate state. Remember that context is literally the intermediate state not the final state. Well, it is interesting to note that despite the upper and lower regions which is separated by that great gulf somehow Abraham and the Rich Man can just talk to each other as if they are side by side. This is an observation made by those on your side of the hell debate as much as mine. "To seek to use any verse that agrees with one's veered off thinking is not correct exegesis." This sums up how I view your comments. You are taking a passage that is literally set in Hades and trying to read it as a statement on Gehenna. You are highlighting certain detail that supports your view and ignoring the rest. When I cite a scholar of the calibre of I. H. Marshall, who notes how the language of lifting one's eyes does not denote looking upwards to a higher region you just ignore it. Sure, the cardinal rule of exegesis is context. I bang on about that more than anybody. Seriously, I do. But your argument for variegated regions stands on that single clause. You have exactly no detail in the context to be able to decide whether this refers to the RM looking up from the ground to the area in front of him where Abraham stands or whether he is looking upwards above his head. You just assume the latter and build your theology on that. It is the slimmest of evidence with which to draw the conclusion you wish to make. Yes, the intermediate state. Not all scholars on your side of the debate agree with you that Hades and Sheol always refers to the nether region, but they would emphasize that this is about what happens before the dead are resurrected at the last judgment. Your comment is a response to this from me, "2. Yes, the rich man does experience torment but that is nowhere in this episode identified as a punitive result. That is, we are not told that God is not punishing him with fire as part a judgement on him. It is simply the result of being in that environment, where there are flames. '' I made a comment clearly referring only to Luke 16 and you treat it as if I had made a blanket statement about what the Bible as a whole teaches. Then you tear that realigned comment down by saying it has no warrant in Scripture. That is what many would call straw-manning. I will put the onus back onto you. What detail in Luke 16:19ff. tells you that the torment is punitive? This is in response to my comment, "I maintain that this picture of the intermediate state is fundamentally different to those instances in the NT where the last judgement is mentioned and the imagery of fire is used to unequivocally communicate the complete destruction of the wicked. " Why do you think I deny eternal punishment with this? What I am arguing is that Luke 16:19 has limited capacity to inform us about the final state of the wicked because it is set in the intermediate state. You can tell that by the detail in the text. I affirm the eternal punishment of the wicked in hell (Matt 25:46). Being permanently dead or destroyed, never to be resurrected is eternal punishment. You might not agree that this is taught in the Bible but you can no longer claim I deny that there is eternal punishment in hell. This is not a defence to my charge that you took the verses out of context to make your point. Whoah, you start off by positing the chaff of Matt 3:12 is comparable with the stubble of 1 Cor 3:12, without explaining why, then you veer off to allude to other passages to import ideas that are not explicitly present in the Matthaen verse. What you don't seem to realize is that your interpretation of Matthew 3:12 as a reference to the church is an outlier reading. I found no commentary that admitted to it. So, you, who constantly claims I have the veered off verses clearly interprets that verse in a manner that radically veers from the normal interpretation of scholars on your side of the hell debate. They think it is about the eschatological judgement of the wicked and so do I. That is you own peculiar interpretation of Matt 3:12. Well, if you think relying on the cross references in you Bible is enough back for your argument them you really should be paying attention to the premier Greek lexicon that is BDAG. Your reading of Matthew 3:12 is an outlier interpretation and Matt 18:8-9 is about removing those part of us that cause us to become evil. Those who do not do that, those you do evil, are thrown into the hell of fire/eternal fire. It is a warning not to allow yourself to become corrupted or you go to hell. That is literally the point. Every image used in Matt 3:12 come from OT contexts where the destruction of the wicked is in view. I know this because of the commentators, those like Leon Morris who held to your view of hell, emphasize this. Yes, your reading of Matthew 3:12 as a reference to believers is an outlier reading. If you want to adopt atypical reading then be my guest. I am following the commentators - those ones who would normally argue for you view if hell. Who says people who are being burned to ash do not weep and gnash their teeth? You are just assuming the cannot to conclude they do not. Actually, I write extensive exegesis showing from the context why interpret verse the way I do. I will see how you engage with some of that work in your next few responses. So, you appeal to a passage that is literally only about the intermediate state and use it to interpret a verse that must speak to the final state of the wicked. You are not even speaking to John 3:16 or the reason I give for my reading. The numbers were all from John and in the immediate context where I am discussing John 3:14-16. This mode of referencing is normal in text books and commentaries when the same book under discussion is being referenced. I explicitly tell you that these references come from John " When ἀπόλλῡμι is used elsewhere in the Gospel". Try to read a bit more carefully, please. I will try to do the same with your arguments but if I miss something please let me know and I will revisit your argument. This forum is not well suited too this kind of lengthy discussion. If you continue to dismiss the evidence then you do not have a basis with which to say the exegesis is wrong. You just have a cavalier dismissal. "Perish is refering to the physical body, therefore the destruction process of it." Prove it. Prove it by exegeting John 3:14-16, not by appealing to a different passage in a different context and the assuming both are speaking to the same point. If you are going to interpret perish in John 3:16 to refer only to the physical body then are you going to be consistent in your interpretation and say that eternal life is also only referring to the physical body? This is in response to my, "Jesus will go on to speak of this in terms of passing from death to life (5:24; 11:24-25). “Perish”, then, is John’s way of emphasizing that those not believing in Christ will just die. If Jesus meant to convey the idea of a never-ending existence of perishing in John 3:16 then we might have expected him to speak of “eternal perishing” or to use terminology that indicates ongoing life for those rejecting him." You are confused about how exegesis works. When one is discussing what a given passage means one discusses how that author uses his own words and phrases. Rather than engaging with that evidence you chose to turn the focus onto me and talk about verses other than John 3:16. You can't claim that this verse means what you say it does if you refuse to engage with the evidence within John. To be sure, there are numerous other verse, but you should know by know that I will take time to exegete all the relevant verses and discuss the reasons for my conclusions. I do not deny that hell is an eternal fore or there is eternal punishment. I maintain that Matthew teaches us throughout his Gospel that the eternal punishment is capital punishment, the irreversible punitive death of the sinner in the eternal fire. That this is irreversible and permanent makes it a punishment that very much is eternal. So now that I have twice affirmed that eternal punishment is taught in the Bible then I expect you to refrain from claiming I deny that very point. This is in response to my, "By the way I leave room for the idea that hell is eternal, it might or might not, but either way my reading would fit. " So I did affirm the eternality of hell but you decided to ignore it and claim I was denying something I do not deny. This is a blatant misrepresentation of my view and shows your complete lack of understanding of what I do believe and argue. Since this immediately follows your cavalier dismissal of my discussion of the evidence for my exegesis of John 3:16 your misunderstanding clearly flows from an unwillingness to engage with the evidence I provide. This is in response to my, "You seem to have brought the idea to John 3:16 that the wicked live forever just as the righteous do, but that just is not what the very words of this verse say." You write, "In the context of John 3 Jesus is focusing on what change is wrought when believing in him. " Exactly, the only change that happens to people are those who believe in Christ. Only they receive eternal life. Other still die. "But in other verses he states the eternal punishment factor." This is the problem. You have to appeal to other texts to claim that "perish" means "never-ending perishing", then you assume that John is teaching the very thing you assumed. That is called begging the question. "If it seems to you that I indicated that the wicked live forever out of John 3, then that's a signicant achievement that even you are aware of." No, I was telling you that you are eisegeting John 3:16. You are reading the idea of immortality of unbelievers into that verse. You are not showing why. All you are doing is deflecting from discussing the evidence I provide and pretending you have rebutted the argument to conclude I am eisegeting the text. You are the one that keeps moving the attention away from the context, not I. If you follow my arguments carefully you will never see me arguing that the biblical language of death and destruction means oblivion. I do not argue that apollymi means to annihilate, or to kill means to make one cease to exist. I never say eternal punishment is eternal oblivion. To be sure it follows that the wicked are dead and gone but that does not justify your subtle shift in taking my words "non-existence" to mean I deny eternal punishment. That is you misreading me. I have put this misconception to bed. This is in response to my, "The idea of a spiritual death is not found in John 3:16 either. That is just you bringing that idea to the text. " I am willing to hear why you think I am reading you incorrectly. These are long thread and this makes it difficult to ensure I don't make mistakes. If you could show from an exegesis of John3:16 why perish refers only to spiritual death then I will engage with that. If you argument involves appealing to other texts passages outside of John then you are indeed reading into John and you are bringing that to the text. This is in response to this, //2Thes.1:9 ".. eternal destruction".. not eternal oblivion.// Who said it was? My challenge to you is to explain how eternal destruction can be inflicted at the time when Jesus comes on that day. _______ Yes, Paul explicitly says that the eternal destruction will be inflicted on the wicked when Christ comes. 2 Thessalonians 1:10 "...when he comes on that day to be glorified in his saints" The challenge is still for you to explain how never-ending destroying can occur on that one day when Christ comes back. Yes, I know. I am challenging your interpretation of 2 Thessalonians 1:9 by pointing to relevant detail in he next verse. If your view is that eternal destruction means eternal destroying then you need to explain why Paul is saying it occurs on that day. You might not have stated when but that was due to you not factoring in v10. Yet you continued anyway with misconceptions about what I do argue. This is in response to my, "These two NT authors are pointing to a tangible instance of divine judgment. S&G had long been regarded as the paradigm case of divine judgment (Deut 29:23; Isa 1:9; 13:19; Jer 23:14; 49:18; 50:40; Lam 4:6; Hos 11:8; Amos 4:11; Zeph 2:9; Sir 16:8; 3 Macc 2:5; Jub. 16:6, 9; 20:5; 22:22; 36:10; T. Asher 7:1; Philo, Quaest. Gen. 4:51; Josephus, BJ 5.566; Matt 10:15; 11:24; Mark 6:11; Luke 10:12; 17:29) (see Richard Bauckham’s WBC commentary on Jude, 2 Peter for these references) " Well, if you dismiss evidence out of hand then do not be surprised if I point out that you are ignoring the background data to posit a reading of Jude 7 that is utterly unique in the ANE literature. This is in response to, //Jude 7 ".. exhibited in undergoing the punishment of eternal fire".. implies continuous. 2Pet.2:5-6 ".. condemned Sodom and Gomorrah to destruction, reducing them to ashes" is only speaking of the once alive people who physically were citywide cremated. The word "eternal" is not mentioned. // Jude 7 in no way implies an unending and continuous experience, despite the word eternal being used there. ______ I see what is happening here. You read eternal fire and jump to the conclusion that this means that whatever is thrown into it must also be eternal. That is the very definition of eisegesis. I do not follow your assumption so I am not engaging in that same error. You point about ongoing punishment is valid and one of the times you do just stick to what the text says. Notice that I slowed down and worked through the exegesis to double check my reading. I am sure you responded to that so I will comment further down when you comment on my argument. but also useful from an eternal punishment sense. The Bible itself is evidence concerning eternal punishment. Jesus in recounting the incident of the rich man and lazerus said that Abraham pointed to the Bible as all that's needed for anyone to know about an eternal punishment to avoid. This is in response to my, "and both Jude and Peter are pointing to them as visible examples of what God’s judgment will look like." Again, Luke 16 is telling you what the intermediate state will be like. Jude and 2 Peter 2:6 are telling you what the last punishment of the wicked will be like. They are both saying that if you want to know what that punishment does to the wicked you have the physical, visible example of S&G to inform you. This is one of the many examples where the NT authors use the OT in a way that teaches the complete destruction of the wicked at the last judgement. . I used the verses because they spoke of eternal punishment.. which can't be seen. This is in response to my, "Their point both Jude and Peter are making is that you can go and look at the area where the destruction happened and verify they have been destroyed by fire. That destruction obviously looks like total destruction, not partial destruction where they continue to exist. Most scholars view 2 Peter 2:6 as explaining Jude 7 further. That destruction was one where the people were indeed burned to ash.  " I just made that point again above. I am not putting the emphasis on what can be physically observed. I am telling you that both Jude 7 and 2 Peter 2:6 explicitly tell you to do that. That is literally what they are telling you the eternal punishment looks like. Why not let them define what that punishment looks like? This is in response to my, "The Greek word behind “exhibited” is πρόκειμαι (prokeimai). When used in the passive voice as it is in Jude 7 it means “to be open to public view, be exposed” (see the lexicons BDAG, Louw-Nida). So, the idea is that the example S&G provides is in some way visible to Jude’s audience at the time when he wrote that letter.. The Greek word for “undergoing” is ὑπέχω (hupechō), and is in the form of a participle. In Greek the tense of participles communicate time relative to that of the controlling verb in the sentence. In this case, that governing verb is “exhibited” is πρόκειμαι (prokeimai). Grammatically, S&G are presently displayed as and example and undergoing punishment. Note that the idea of undergoing punishment might imply an experience but in the Greek it does not necessarily do this. In fact, there is ample evidence in the Bible where S&G is referred to as an illustration of sin and divine punishment, but this is never depicted as presently suffering a punishment. This analysis bears out in studies of the use of “exhibited” (πρόκειμαι, prokeimai) with “undergoing” (ὑπέχω, hupechō) in extrabiblical literature where this terminology is used to refer to the past with the present tense in ways that do not imply the present example is intended to communicate a contemporaneous experience. You can check out Josephus’ use of this terminology in his The Jewish Wars: Book I-VII (Wars of the Jews 6.103), where he encourage his fellow Jews to surrender to the Romans by pointing to Jehoiachin the past king who is set forth as an example of those who are undergoing destruction at the hands of an enemy. Of course, Josephus is not saying the Jehoiachin reign and death hundreds of years earlier stands literally and visibly before his audience. He goes on to indicate that he means this is cognitively present in their collective memory. This is how that terminology is being used in Jude 7. You also need to consider that the vast majority of scholarship argues for good reason that there is a very strong literary relationship between Jude and 2 Peter so that 2 Peter 6 is often thought of as explaining Jude 7 further. 2 Peter 6 is telling you what the future eschatological punishment of the wicked will do to them – burn them to ashes thus condemning them to extinction." Nice evasion of the evidence. I argue that the final punishment is capital punishment. Burning people to ash kills them. That is the emphasis is on the loss of life. This logically means the person will no longer exist but I am not arguing that the biblical language means to annihilate someone on a molecular level or to make them cease to exist. These comments you failed to respond to were directed to your argument that S&G were undergoing a punishment of eternal fire. You might want to respond to my argument because I demonstrate why your are misreading that comment. You have this propensity to assume that when the fire is describe as eternal it is somehow a description of the wicked as being eternal. You do the same with eternal punishment and eternal destruction. That flies in the face of the information the NT author give you when the used this terminology. This is in response to, "//Rev.14:10-11 The words "tormented" and "forever and ever".. "having no rest day and night". How does anyone get "unconscious" from that? Rev.19:2-3 "He has judged the great harlot who was corrupting the earth with her immorality. And her smoke rises up forever and ever." It would seem that God isn't concerned about air pollution.// It is recognized by most scholars that the imagery of ever ascending smoke is drawn from Isaiah 34:10 which picture the desolate and dead land of Edom. John himself uses this same imagery in Rev 19:3 to picture the complete destruction of Babylon (c.f. Rev 18:21-24 for context). The ever-ascending smoke signifies completed destruction on ongoing destruction. As for “having no rest day or night”. In the Greek that is literally in the present tense so relates to the act of worshiping in that scene. It literally refers to them having no rest while worshipping the Beast only." ________________________________ You have a very good point. I love these moments in exegesis as they prompt me to study the text. I am an exegete and am committed to following the evidence in the text itself. I would have abandoned the argument I made about the present tense if there was no further detail to consider. I think that in that case your reading of that verse would be correct and I would readily concede that. Having said that, there is more detail to consider, and this meets your response squarely. Rev 11:9-11 forms a literary feature called a chiasmus or chiasm. A chiasm is, "A literary device in which words, clauses or themes are laid out and then repeated but in inverted order. This creates an a-b-b-a pattern, or a “crossing” effect like the letter “x” (χιασμός, “a making of the letter χ”). Also called inverted parallelism." DeMoss, Matthew S.. Pocket Dictionary for the Study of New Testament Greek (The IVP Pocket Reference Series) (p. 29). InterVarsity Press. Kindle Edition. I have studied many biblical chiasms over the years and the one seen in Rev 14:9-11 is one of the clearer examples of this literary device I have ever seen. I will post the basic analysis from Dr Ralph Bowles, who has a peer reviewed article on this very subject. (A) If anyone worships the beast and its image, and receives a mark on his forehead or on his hand, (v. 9) (B) he also shall drink the wine of God’s wrath, poured unmixed into the cup of his anger, (v. 10a) (C) he shall be tormented with fire and sulfur in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. (v. 10b) (Ci) And the smoke of their torment goes up for ever and ever, (v. 11a) (Bi) and they have no rest, day or night, (v. 11b) (Ai) these worshippers of the beast and its image, and whoever receives the mark of its name. (v. 11c). In a chiasm, the inverted parallel lines speak to the same point with the central parallel lines. A and Ai go together, B and Bi go together, with C and Ci pairing together. The central parallel pairing is the climax of the chiasm. This means the "no rest day and night" (v. 11b) pairs with "he also shall drink the wine of God’s wrath, poured unmixed into the cup of his anger, " in v. 10a. The lack of rest does not relate to the tormenting mentioned in vs. 10b-11a. Both the having no rest and the ever rising smoke are in the present tense but the chiasm itself sets out the sequence of event as ending wit the destruction of the beast worshippers (remember smoke ring forever is drawn from Is 34:10 where is signifies completed destruction). I will leave Ralph Bowels' following comments here as an explanation of why this reading fits much better with the context than your reading does. "It is the literary structure of Rev 14: 9– 11 that provides the explanation of the meaning of the judgment and its elements. The crucial key to understanding phrases or sentences is found by matching them with their corresponding items in the whole structure. The introverted parallelism of Rev 14: 9– 11 shows us that the final element in the depiction of judgment is the smoke rising after the judgment has been completed, as is the case in Isa 34: 9, 10. The climactic element is in the central position in this structure— the tormenting judgment that destroys utterly. The other two elements in the inversion refer to the intense experience of the judgment as it happens; it’s a full strength outpouring of God’s wrath that leaves no rest or break while it is unfolding. We can see that the phrase “no rest, day or night” is logically prior to the rising smoke. The meaning can be seen by observing the corresponding member of the inverted parallelism. “No rest day or night” is another way of saying that God’s wrath is poured out in full strength when the judgment is operating; it is quenchless, unremitting and overwhelming. In modern warfare terms, it is the equivalent of intense, day and night, bombing; there is no break until it obliterates the enemy. The meaning of Rev 14: 11 is in harmony with the passage in Isaiah 34 that lies behind it. It is a mark of illegitimate proof-texting to fix a meaning on a verse without regard for its context. The traditionalist interpretation usually overlooks the context of Rev 14: 11. On closer examination, there is a strong disconfirmation of the “eternal torment” theory lying nearby in this section of the Revelation to John. The traditional reading of Rev 14: 11 ignores the crucial fact that this verse is part of a warning of the coming judgment on God’s enemies, which is then followed by a description of the actual judgment in Rev 14: 14– 20. In 14: 6– 13 the impending final judgment of God is announced, and when the three angels complete their warnings of the great judgment to come (including 14: 9– 11), there follows in Rev 14: 14– 20 a description of this final harvest judgment. There are verbal and imagery links in this depiction of the judgment, with the warning proclamation of Rev 14: 9– 11. In the divine judgment, the vines of the earth (the wicked) are thrown into “the great winepress of the wrath of God.” This echoes the words of Rev 14: 10: “he himself shall also drink of the wine of the wrath of God.” The actual description of this final judgment is a vivid, gruesome picture of utter death and dissolution, not of endless torment: “the winepress was trodden outside the city, and blood flowed from the winepress as high as a horse’s bridle, for one thousand six hundred stadia” (Rev 14: 20). We look in vain in the description of the final judgment to find a picture of eternal, conscious torment. There is torment certainly, and great distress in the awesome judgment of God, but it ends in the decisive dissolution and obliteration of the enemies of God. The conditionalist interpretation of Rev 14: 11 fits the immediate context much better than the eternal torment reading. There is no tension between the terms of the proclamation of final judgment in Rev 14: 9– 11 and the description of final judgment in Rev 14: 14– 20. The traditionalist reading has a tension between the eternal torment supposedly predicted in Rev 14: 11 and the picture of final annihilating destruction that follows in Rev 14: 14– 20." "Does Revelation 14:11 Teach Eternal Torment?", in Rethinking Hell: Readings in Evangelical Conditionalism, Kindle Edition, Kindle locations 3711-3740. This is in response to, "//You apparently equate "destroy" with complete cessation of the spirit of man. However that is your invisible insert. // No, I just let the word means what it means. I do not define the death and destruction language of the Bible as “to annihilate” or “to go out of existence”. “Death/to kill” refers to the loss of life – no life = to conscious existence." Yes, I am pointing out the exact words Peter uses in that instance. Here are his exact words "if by turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to ashes he condemned them to extinction, making them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly" (2 Peter 2:6 6 ). It is perfectly fine for me to describe what Peter is saying there, as you should also do. Please let me define my view of hell and my arguments. My perspective is that the biblical language of death and destruction, when used in last judgment contexts, tells us the wicked are killed. That is exactly what Peter is telling you. S&G were turned to ashes and that process condemned them to extinction. This in no way implies I argue that the death and destruction language means to be made extinct, or to cease to exist. My view is best described as annihilation wit the sense of capital punishment not molecular disintegration. Your insistence on this matter is like me insisting you hold to a particular view of eternal conscious punishment when you do not. There are several views of hell you could adopt, including but not limited to, 1. Separationist (e.g. Greg Koukl, I think) 2. Tormentism proper (e.g. John Walvoord) 3. Dehumanisationism (e.g. N. T. Wright) 4. The naked souls vew (e.g. ?, I have no idea which scholar in mainstream Evangelicalism holds to this but I am encountering it more on the net) Imaging me insisting you hold to the demumanisation view if you were a separationist. I could point out some of similar language the two camps uses and insist you are something you are not. Would you be happy with that? How about you let me define my view of hell and you use the label for my view that I use, please. This is in response to this, "//Mat.3:12, 13:40-42 does not teach that "complete destruction" by your interpretation is in view.// See my comments above. Being burned to ash is complete destruction, the kind of destruction that kills. No life, no consciousness.// The exact phrase eternal punishment is used only in Matthew 25:46 where it says "And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life." The eternal life and the eternal punishment are set in parallel but starting with Augustine, those wishing to use this to defend the traditional idea of hell as eternal conscious torment has begun with the assumption that the parallelism must mean that just as the sheep have life so also the goat will have life. The parallelism necessarily implies no such thing. It might, but that is not certain. The parallelism can just as easily emphasize the opposite fates of eternal life for the sheep and eternal capital punishment for the goats. I am in no way denying that eternal means eternal. To be dead forever is by definition eternal. I in no way imply that capital punishment precludes experience. I defy you to find me an example of someone who is conscious when being burned to death who is not experiencing that fate. As I keep pointing out, Matthew himself tells us what this eternal punishment looks like. It is the death of the whole person in Gehenna (Matt 10:28; 18:8-9) when they are burned to ash (3:12; 13:40-42). We are no more required to read the words eternal punishment as eternal punishing that we are to read eternal sin (Mark 3:29) as eternal sinning, or eternal judgment (Hebrews 6:2) as eternal judging. You are adding the idea of unending experience to eternal punishment. I show you from the text why it does not mean that unending act and experience. This is in regards to my exegesis of Matt 10:28. You ignored all the evidence and just asserted apollymi does not mean to kill. This is special pleading. I will wait for you to interact with the evidence before I comment further. //The physical body at death has to be buried, it doesn't go to hell. // Yet Matthew 10:28 explicitly tells you that the body will end up in Gehenna. //The rich man in hell (Lk.16:14-31) had thirst, he felt the torment. Abraham never told him that he'd soon be out of his misery because he was getting his just due of eternal punishment.// Again, you are using a scene set in Hades and refers to the intermediate state and imposing that onto a text that is about what happens in Gehenna. Where does Abraham say the RM is undergoing eternal punishment? Where? Please remember, mainline Christian theology has all being resurrected at the end of the age for judgment. That is a bodily resurrection of the righteous and the wicked. That is a core belief of Christianity and is true irrespective of what view of hell is held. I am not even denying that the RM will be destroyed in Hades or that he won't be in anguish while he is there. I am just pointing out a core Christian doctrine of resurrection to judgement for the wicked (John 5:29). This is in response to my, //2. There is parallelism in Matthew 10:28 which means the verbs "to kill" and "to destroy" should be seen as synonyms.// There is only one verse in question not two as you say. I think you are referring to the two lines in the parallel construction in Matthew 10:28. The problem for you is that you just ignore all the data from within Matthew showing that when apollymi is used of one person destroying another is means to kill, and then out of that make the unsubstantiated claim that destroy do not mean to kill. I can read the Greek and I have studied this out in depth. Matthew uses the Greek verb for "to kill" and apollymi interchangeably when referring to king Herod's determination to kill the infant Jesus. These two verbs certainly can be used synonymously in Matthew and the parallelism in Matthew 10:28 makes this certain. Jesus point in Matthew 10:28 hangs exactly on the idea that what men can only partially do (only kill the body) there is one who can do completely (kill the body and soul in Gehenna). Since you ignore the evidence you completely misread the verse. This is in response to my, "3. In the preceding context of the verse Jesus had commissioned the disciples (Matt 10:1-13) and informed them that they faced persecution as they completed their mission (10:16-20). Jesus reassures the disciples by telling them that they will receive assistance form the Holy Spirit to speak boldly in the face of their persecution (10:19-20) but does not address the threat of death (10:21). This is the specific concern that Matt 10:28 is addressing. Jesus will go on in Matt 10:39 to encourage the disciples to remain faithful to him. In that verse he uses apollymi with the passive sense of losing one's life. To lose one's life in the service of Christ means one will find life." You response is a non sequitur. This is in response to my, //There is an identifiable flow of thought that informs us of what Jesus intended to say. Therefore, the surrounding context tells us exactly what Jesus meant when he used apollymi to refer to the destruction of the body and soul in Gehenna.// Your response is not addressing the point of the evidence I highlight. All I am saying here is that the flow of thought supports my argument that apollymi means "to kill" in this context. My argument is literally that Matthew 10:28 teaches the body and the soul will be destroyed/killed in Gehenna and you are responding with just a bald assertion that this involves corruption. You provide no evidence whatsoever for this reading but just read it into the verse. Whatever apollymi means it never means "to corrupt", ever. So if that is your understanding of "destroy" in Matt 10:28 they you have invented that meaning for that word. This is in response to my, "4. While it is true that apollymi can be used with the sense of "to ruin" that is only in relation to inanimate objects or plants. Insisting that this shade of meaning is available in Matthew 10:28, when nothing in the context would indicate this meaning is in view, constitutes the fallacy of illegitimate totality transfer." Do you know what the fallacy of the illegitimate totality transfer is? Your response indicate you do not. It means you cannot begin your exegesis by assuming those other meanings automatically apply in every usage of that word. You need to address that argument not sidestep it. Besides, even if you can show the example of the burst wineskin does apply in this case it should be obvious that that kind of destruction, the ripping of something to shreds, is going to kill a person. Either way, aplollymi would mean "to kill". This is in response to my, "That is the fallacy of assuming all shades of meaning of a word are automatically available for interpretation in all contexts. There is nothing in the context nor the verse itself that tells us that the "to ruin" meaning is in view in 10:28 or that the killing/destruction in view is the kind that would leave someone alive and conscious. " You clearly do not understand my argument. Every point I made was to lay the exegetical argument for my reading. I show from the text why the text means what it means. You on the other hand just ignore my evidence, do not provide any of your own, and just make bald assertions. This was just hanging there. There is only one sentence. I checked the Greek. Who is saying the result is not different in each line of the sentence? You are saying there is a difference in the verbs so that in one instance the body is killed but in another instance the body and soul are corrupted. I would just not that he parallelism is characterised by a fortiori logic. The first line is speaking to only the death of he body and the second line is peaking to the death of the whole person in Gehenna. In one you have the soul remaining alive but in another the soul is killed. This is a different result. ''I've already stated that the physical body is not in hell so it can't be speaking of "the whole person". '' Your interpretation is special pleading characterised by equivocation. The Greek verb for body in each line is the same (soma) so you are just swapping meaning with no justification or explanation. This interpretation also flies against mainline Christian understanding of body in that verse (actually, body anywhere in the Bible). I do not need to comment further because your reading is even more of an outlier reading than mine is. "The mistakes due to your presuppositions are not resulting in accuracy of conclusion." You've not addressed any of my exegetical arguments from context and shown why your rebuttal is true. My conclusion stands. "The Bible clearly states "eternal punishment" which cannot be carried out if the wicked sinner is "killed" in hell and therefore not experiencing any of the punishment for eternity." So, an appeal to a separate context again. What you are demonstrating is your willingness to let another context influence your reading of this context. At least you stayed in Matthew this time. I have well addressed your eternal; punishment argument above. Capital punishment is eternal punishment if it is permanent. "Yours is the unbiblical "idea" that seeks to ursurp over the knowledge of God stated by Jesus, and the apostles.. all getting their knowlege from God himself via the Holy Spirit." You've not demonstrated that. You have cherry picked which arguments of mine you want to address and just ignored the rest. Now you are claiming my ideas are unbiblical, which is odd since some of your ideas (non-physical bodies in Gehenna) are biblically unsupported. Please rebut all my arguments before declaring the biblical stance of my view. Your argument is an argument from silence. This is in response to, "// The verses of "eternal destruction" .. don't mean as you erroneously interpret "not live forever".. but it means "destruction of the wicked is ongoing for eternity".// Prove it. I do not mean just quote verses but lay out your positive exegesis like I am to show why your reading of these texts are to be read as you say they do." You do no such thing as prove that eternal destruction is eternal destroying and you do not explain how that eternal destruction can happen on that day when Christ comes. Proving it requires you exegeting he text in context not cutting and pasting. Who is asking you to cut and paste? Declining the challenge means you cannot or will not answer the challenge, how can the eternal destruction happen on just that day when Christ comes? "If you don't follow with what I do post then I suggest that we discontinue posting each other." I am meticulous in my responses. Read back and you will see I directly addressed each argument you made.  This is in response to my, __________ // The context decides whether a text is to be read literally or metaphorically. There is a danger to read a literal meaning as metaphorical because that opens the door to what Peter calls a private (not inspired of God) interpretation.. which you are doing in saying that the wicked don't live forever or exist in the torment of hell forever. That sort of idea has to be read in there without any scriptural support for it on literal or plain reading terms. If any of the Bible teachers and scholars I accept to be teaching sound doctrine suggest to read and follow Rev.Beale's teachings then I might consider it, but until then I stand on what I've learned from them and my own Bible studies with the Lord. // Then you would be interested to note that Beale wrote the following, Some commentators contend that since Revelation sometimes explicitly explains the meaning of an image in a vision there is a “presumption that, where expressions are not explained, they can normally be interpreted according to their natural [i.e., literal] meaning, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise.” Therefore, a number of authors of both popular and scholarly commentaries contend that one should interpret literally except where one is forced to interpret symbolically by clear indications of context. But the results of the analysis above of 1:1 indicate that this rule should be turned on its head: we are told in the book’s introduction that the majority of the material in it is revelatory symbolism (1:12–20 and 4:1–22:5 at the least). Hence, the predominant manner by which to approach the material will be according to a nonliteral interpretative method. Of course, some parts are not symbolic, but the essence of the book is figurative. Where there is lack of clarity about whether something is symbolic, the scales of judgment should be tilted in the direction of a nonliteral analysis. (Beale, G. K. (1999). The book of Revelation: a commentary on the Greek text, p. 52). ________________ ''Since Beale sounds accurate in that statement it boggles me as to how you come up with the interpretations that you have concerning the scriptures discussed that are not out of Revelation.'' Really? So when Beale warns that automatically taking the literal reading is wrong you do not stop to think that arguing the literal meaning of torment in Rev 14:11 and 20:10 might not have been meant to be taken literally? Scan up above and you will see how I argue from the text. I follow John's own clues he gives in the text. I have never claimed the final punishment is not eternal. I enjoy discussing exegesis of the Bible and you pushed my to do more research on Jude 7 and Rev 14:14, which is cool. I learned more out of that process. Thank you for your time. I appreciate it. I am a conditionalist so there is always someone somewhere who wants to prove I am wrong. God bless you.
  4. I have taken my time to respond because I have been busy at work. Sorry for the tardy response. I dislike the way I was responding in piecemeal fashion in separate posts so have put all this together in one post here. It gets too difficult to track the flow of thought otherwise. //I appeal to the new testament texts as Paul and the other writers of the epistles appeal to the old testament texts. Or, I appeal strictly to the revelations within the new testament that the old testament doesn't have.// Speaking only to the question of those texts relating to the final judgment and punishment, there are numerous occasions when the NT authors use the OT language and images of destruction and death. Examining how they use the OT in these instances it very informative. In those instances like Matthew 25:46 where the OT is not utilized you can read back and see that throughout his Gospel he does employ the OT to tell us exactly what this punishment will look like. There are, strictly speaking, not that many instances of revelation within the NT where they have not used the OT. Even Rev 20:10 is prefaced by a sustained appeal to the OT. My friend Dr Webb Mealy published his PhD on this very subject thesis (see his book The End of The Unrepentant for a more recent expression of this thesis). I am not in total agreement with his conclusions yet, but the point I wish to make is that even here the new revelation flows from the NT use of the OT. Studying how they do that is one of my academic interests, as is studying how Matthew develops his theme of judgement throughout his narrative. //They might not quote each other, but they don't write any disagreements either. None of them authored any of the branched-off theologies that are spoken of as gospel today.// Following what I have just written you can verify just how consistent they are when they do utilize the OT. On the question of the final fate of he wicked the difference between you and I is simply over whether they survive the punishment. I am an Evangelical and a lifelong Baptist who holds to every core doctrine in Evangelicalism. Evangelical Conditionalism, the movement to which I belong, sets the question of hell in the framework of normal Evangelical soteriology. Further, a good portion of my exegetical work on the relevant texts is facilitate by observations made by several Evangelical commentators (I own hundreds of commentaries and other books so my research is comprehensive). Whatever branched off theology you have in mind I guarantee you that I do not hold to it. // The matter of language still speaks loudly and clearly in what Jesus said concerning the rich man in hell being conscious of torment just as Abraham in the upper region was conscious in paradise (Lk.16:25).// And what are we explicitly told here? 1. Well, the episode occurs immediately after the death of Lazarus and the Rich Man, who is in Hades. Most commentators I have recognize this is speaking to the abode of the dead and the intermediate state. I do not think we have a picture of an upper region overlooking a lower region as if the location of Abraham is in another environment altogether. In this episode Abraham and the Rich Man can talk to each other. It is true that the Rich Man lifts his eyes, but as I. H. Marshall notes in his commentary The Gospel of Luke (NIGTC, pg636-637), “the fact that the rich man ‘lifted his eyes’ (c.f. 6:20) to see Lazarus does not necessarily indicate that the latter was above him; the phraseology is stereotyped (see especially 2 Sa. 18:24).” I suggest all you need to do is read Like 6:20 “And he lifted up his eyes on his disciples, and said: "Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God.” I can check other commentators on this question if you like but it should be clear that even if Abraham is standing on an elevated side of the great chasm he is still within the same environment of Hades. Hades is the Greek word used here. I will comment below on the translation problems of rendering that word as hell. 2. Yes, the rich man does experience torment but that is nowhere in this episode identified as a punitive result. That is, we are not told that God is not punishing him with fire as part a judgement on him. It is simply the result of being in that environment, where there are flames. I maintain that this picture of the intermediate state is fundamentally different to those instances in the NT where the last judgement is mentioned and the imagery of fire is used to unequivocally communicate the complete destruction of the wicked. I will comment on those verses below in response to your rejoinders. //Mat.3:12 His winnowing fork is in His hand to clear His threshing floor and to gather His wheat into the barn; but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire. Gathering the wheat, but burning the chaff is an effect occurring to one group of people. Compare 1Cor.3: 12-15 Now if any man builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each man's work will become evident; for the day will show it because it is to be revealed with fire, and the fire itself will test the quality of each man's work. If any man's work which he has built on it remains, he will receive a reward. If any man's work is burned up, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire. It is "the wood, hay and stubble" of the righteous that is burned up. Neither Matthew nor Paul is talking there about what sinners experience in hell. // I find it interesting that you have to go away from the context of Matt 3:12 to try and explain your reading of it. As it stands all you are doing is seeing the word chaff in Matthew and the reference to wood, hay and, stubble in 1 Cor 3:12 and assuming they are speaking to the same point. Paul does not mention chaff while in Mark only chaff is mentioned. Does that not alert you to the possibility that they are speaking to two different points? I would like to see you provide some comment from the context of Matt 3:12 that would support the idea it is about the church as Paul is using it. Looking at the context in Matthew 3, there is some debate in scholarship over whether the Baptist is referring to the church only with his “He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire” in Matt 3:11. However, even those scholars arguing that this relates to the church go on to speak of Matthew 3:12 as using a second metaphor from fire to make a point about the eschatological and final judgement. The best lexicons like BDAG treat “unquenchable fire” in that verse as being synonymous with the eternal fire of Matthew 18:8-9; 25:41 while other lexicons like Louw-Nida relate it to Mark 9:48 where the same imagery is used in relation to Gehenna (hell), the place where the wicked are punished. That is all highly suggestive that Matt 3:12 is indeed referring to the last judgment of the wicked and not merely to the purification of the righteous in the church. //Mat.13:40-42 is talking about what sinners experience in hell. The difference is evident by using "tares".. "stumbling blocks".. "those who commit lawlessness". And "weeping and gnashing of teeth". None of those words or phrases are in Mat.3:12 or in 1Cor.3:12-15.// Yes! Matt 13:40-42 is referring to what the wicked experience in hell. Notice the same basic point is the same here as it is in Matt 3:12. In each case that which is thrown into the fire is burned to ash. That is literally what the Greek, κατακαίω (katakaiō) means. That is what happens to these stumbling blocks and those committing lawlessness, they are burned to ash. The fact there is weeping and gnashing of teeth fits with this perfectly. Would you not weep and gnash your teeth if you were being burned to ash like that? If you like I can go into much more depth on how Matthew uses the OT in 3:12 and 13:40-42. In this second passage he is drawing from Daniel to make his point. Let me know of you want to explain how he is doing this. //John 3:14-16 I would add vs 17-20. In vs.16 "Those who believe shall not perish, but have eternal life." As I understand it, hell is eternal just as heaven is. Therefore those who don't believe remain spiritually dead and upon physical death go to the eternal existence in hell, until the White Throne judgement, then are sent back for the second death in hell. The word "eternal" should be obvious as to it's meaning. If destruction means a total cessation of existence then the word "eternal" should be changed to oblivion. // What you should do is let the context tell you what John means. In John 3:14 Jesus alludes to an episode in the OT where God directs Moses to attach a bronze snake onto a pole and to lift it up (Num. 21:4-9). The Israelites were being killed by a plague of snakes and by looking at the elevated bronze snake they could live despite already having been bitten by the snakes. John uses this episode in a typological way to express the one point that Christ’s elevation on the cross brings true and everlasting life. Whereas in the wilderness episode the elevation of the bronze snake brings earthly life for the Israelites, in John 3:14-16 Jesus’ elevation on the cross brings “eternal life” for those who believe in him. Yet Jesus literally says nothing to indicate he wants you to interpret perishing as unending dying. He develops the typology to teach the idea that only those believing in him have eternal life. Those who do not believe in him still just die. You can verify this for yourself. The Greek word for “perish” he uses is a common word for “destruction”, ἀπόλλῡμι, but is here being used in the middle voice, and intransitively (i.e. where a verb does not need a direct object to make sense), which simply means “to suffer destruction” or “to perish”. When ἀπόλλῡμι is used elsewhere in the Gospel it is clearly to express either that food will decompose completely (c.f. 6:12; 27), or as a synonym for dying (10:10; 11:50; 12:25). Jesus will go on to speak of this in terms of passing from death to life (5:24; 11:24-25). “Perish”, then, is John’s way of emphasizing that those not believing in Christ will just die. If Jesus meant to convey the idea of a never-ending existence of perishing in John 3:16 then we might have expected him to speak of “eternal perishing” or to use terminology that indicates ongoing life for those rejecting him. By the way I leave room for the idea that hell is eternal, it might or might not, but either way my reading would fit. You seem to have brought the idea to John 3:16 that the wicked live forever just as the righteous do, but that just is not what the very words of this verse say. What you are doing is called eisegesis (reading into the text) and what I am doing is called exegesis (reading out of the text). As for your definition of destruction as oblivion, only you have brought that to this discussion, not me. So if you are responding to the argument that the destruction and death language of the Bible means “to annihilate” or “to go out of existence” then you are responding to claim I do not make. The idea of a spiritual death is not found in John 3:16 either. That is just you bringing that idea to the text. //2Thes.1:9 ".. eternal destruction".. not eternal oblivion.// Who said it was? My challenge to you is to explain how eternal destruction can be inflicted at the time when Jesus comes on that day. It makes much more sense to say they were destroyed in a way that deprived them of life and that destruction is eternal. It makes no sense to say that the never-ending experience of being eternally destroyed will occur on that day. It is up to you how you respond. I recognize that I need to explain to you what my understanding of the destruction and death language of the Bible is, which I will do in time. I am just responding you your comments for now and then we can move on. There is a lot of ground to cover. //Jude 7 ".. exhibited in undergoing the punishment of eternal fire".. implies continuous. 2Pet.2:5-6 ".. condemned Sodom and Gomorrah to destruction, reducing them to ashes" is only speaking of the once alive people who physically were citywide cremated. The word "eternal" is not mentioned. // Jude 7 in no way implies an unending and continuous experience, despite the word eternal being used there. These two NT authors are pointing to a tangible instance of divine judgment. S&G had long been regarded as the paradigm case of divine judgment (Deut 29:23; Isa 1:9; 13:19; Jer 23:14; 49:18; 50:40; Lam 4:6; Hos 11:8; Amos 4:11; Zeph 2:9; Sir 16:8; 3 Macc 2:5; Jub. 16:6, 9; 20:5; 22:22; 36:10; T. Asher 7:1; Philo, Quaest. Gen. 4:51; Josephus, BJ 5.566; Matt 10:15; 11:24; Mark 6:11; Luke 10:12; 17:29) (see Richard Bauckham’s WBC commentary on Jude, 2 Peter for these references) and both Jude and Peter are pointing to them as visible examples of what God’s judgment will look like. Their point both Jude and Peter are making is that you can go and look at the area where the destruction happened and verify they have been destroyed by fire. That destruction obviously looks like total destruction, not partial destruction where they continue to exist. Most scholars view 2 Peter 2:6 as explaining Jude 7 further. That destruction was one where the people were indeed burned to ash. The Greek word behind “exhibited” is πρόκειμαι (prokeimai). When used in the passive voice as it is in Jude 7 it means “to be open to public view, be exposed” (see the lexicons BDAG, Louw-Nida). So, the idea is that the example S&G provides is in some way visible to Jude’s audience at the time when he wrote that letter.. The Greek word for “undergoing” is ὑπέχω (hupechō), and is in the form of a participle. In Greek the tense of participles communicate time relative to that of the controlling verb in the sentence. In this case, that governing verb is “exhibited” is πρόκειμαι (prokeimai). Grammatically, S&G are presently displayed as and example and undergoing punishment. Note that the idea of undergoing punishment might imply an experience but in the Greek it does not necessarily do this. In fact, there is ample evidence in the Bible where S&G is referred to as an illustration of sin and divine punishment, but this is never depicted as presently suffering a punishment. This analysis bears out in studies of the use of “exhibited” (πρόκειμαι, prokeimai) with “undergoing” (ὑπέχω, hupechō) in extrabiblical literature where this terminology is used to refer to the past with the present tense in ways that do not imply the present example is intended to communicate a contemporaneous experience. You can check out Josephus’ use of this terminology in his The Jewish Wars: Book I-VII (Wars of the Jews 6.103), where he encourage his fellow Jews to surrender to the Romans by pointing to Jehoiachin the past king who is set forth as an example of those who are undergoing destruction at the hands of an enemy. Of course, Josephus is not saying the Jehoiachin reign and death hundreds of years earlier stands literally and visibly before his audience. He goes on to indicate that he means this is cognitively present in their collective memory. This is how that terminology is being used in Jude 7. You also need to consider that the vast majority of scholarship argues for good reason that there is a very strong literary relationship between Jude and 2 Peter so that 2 Peter 6 is often thought of as explaining Jude 7 further. 2 Peter 6 is telling you what the future eschatological punishment of the wicked will do to them – burn them to ashes thus condemning them to extinction. It is very difficult to deny that this is what he means the future punishment with be like irrespective of whether the word eternal is used. //Rev.14:10-11 The words "tormented" and "forever and ever".. "having no rest day and night". How does anyone get "unconscious" from that? Rev.19:2-3 "He has judged the great harlot who was corrupting the earth with her immorality. And her smoke rises up forever and ever." It would seem that God isn't concerned about air pollution.// It is recognized by most scholars that the imagery of ever ascending smoke is drawn from Isaiah 34:10 which picture the desolate and dead land of Edom. John himself uses this same imagery in Rev 19:3 to picture the complete destruction of Babylon (c.f. Rev 18:21-24 for context). The ever-ascending smoke signifies completed destruction on ongoing destruction. As for “having no rest day or night”. In the Greek that is literally in the present tense so relates to the act of worshiping in that scene. It literally refers to them having no rest while worshipping the Beast only. //You apparently equate "destroy" with complete cessation of the spirit of man. However that is your invisible insert. // No, I just let the word means what it means. I do not define the death and destruction language of the Bible as “to annihilate” or “to go out of existence”. “Death/to kill” refers to the loss of life – no life = to conscious existence. Words like apollymi (to destroy) are applied to things like wineskins, which ae said to be shredded. You do that to a person you kill them. I exegete each verse carefully to makes sure I am reading them in context. Mat.3:12, 13:40-42 does not teach that "complete destruction" by your interpretation is in view. See my comments above. Being burned to ash is complete destruction, the kind of destruction that kills. No life, no consciousness. Mat.10:28 ".. are unable to kill the soul.. fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell." Unless and until you can give more detail of it's meaning.. I would take the position that it remains in dispute that you are using it correctly. Question: how is the body destroyed in hell? [scriptures?] Question: what is the soul exactly?.. how is it destroyed in hell? [scriptures?] Question: using any number of scriptures (Eccles.12:7; Job 32:8; Prov.20:27; 1Thes.5:23) that specifically mention the spirit of man.. it apparently isn't destroyed in hell. I recently posted on Matthew 10:28. I will paste my comments here. I think Matthew 10:28 is evidence against the idea that the wicked will suffer eternal conscious punishment (ECP) in hell for several reasons. Matthew 10:28 "And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell. " 1. The Greek word for destroy is apollymi and when it is used of one person destroying another in the Synoptic Gospels it always clearly means to kill (e.g., Matt. 2:13; 12:14; 21:41; 27:20; Mark 3:6; 9: 22; Luke 6:9). Jesus is here just using the language as he normally uses to indicate the body and soul (whole person) will be killed in Gehenna. 2. There is parallelism in Matthew 10:28 which means the verbs "to kill" and "to destroy" should be seen as synonyms. 3. In the preceding context of the verse Jesus had commissioned the disciples (Matt 10:1-13) and informed them that they faced persecution as they completed their mission (10:16-20). Jesus reassures the disciples by telling them that they will receive assistance form the Holy Spirit to speak boldly in the face of their persecution (10:19-20) but does not address the threat of death (10:21). This is the specific concern that Matt 10:28 is addressing. Jesus will go on in Matt 10:39 to encourage the disciples to remain faithful to him. In that verse he uses apollymi with the passive sense of losing one's life. To lose one's life in the service of Christ means one will find life. There is an identifiable flow of thought that informs us of what Jesus intended to say. Therefore, the surrounding context tells us exactly what Jesus meant when he used apollymi to refer to the destruction of the body and soul in Gehenna. 4. While it is true that apollymi can be used with the sense of "to ruin" that is only in relation to inanimate objects or plants. Insisting that this shade of meaning is available in Matthew 10:28, when nothing in the context would indicate this meaning is in view, constitutes the fallacy of illegitimate totality transfer. That is the fallacy of assuming all shades of meaning of a word are automatically available for interpretation in all contexts. There is nothing in the context nor the verse itself that tells us that the "to ruin" meaning is in view in 10:28 or that the killing/destruction in view is the kind that would leave someone alive and conscious. Since apollymi is being used with its usual sense of "to kill" and the context tells us this is exactly what was intended, I conclude that Matthew 10:28 teaches that the body and the soul (the whole person) will be killed (as in all life taken away like when capital punishment is inflicted on someone) in Gehenna (hell). This verse is thus evidence against the idea that the Bible teaches ECP. In Matthew 10:28 Jesus is telling you that the body and soul will be killed. That is the deprivation of life. There will be no life left and no part of the person left undestroyed so that he or she will remain conscious. This is not some funky apollymi = to annihilate, or to cause to cease to be. It is just the normal means od to kill that is in view – it is the loss of life. I wrote //Notice that in both Daniel 12:2 and John 5:29 only the righteous receive life. The wicked do not.// You responded //When you're arguing from the verse you cite make sure you include the relevant detail. The wicked do not what?  Dan.12:2 "the others to disgrace and everlasting contempt". John 5:29 "those who did evil deeds to a resurrection of judgement." // I thought it was obvious I am arguing that the wicked are not explicitly said to have eternal life in any of those verses. Only the righteous receive eternal life. The wicked are never said to receive life of any kind. Yes they are resurrected but this is to a punishment that will kill them. I wrote //John has already been clear that those not believing in Christ will perish (John 3:16) and will go on to say that only believers will not die again in the next age (John 11:26).// You responded //A superfluous additional verse in the midst of repeating previous verses already covered.// Not so. The Greek in John 11:26 is literally πιστεύων εἰς ἐμὲ οὐ μὴ ἀποθάνῃ εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα and reads “the one believing in me will never die forever”. This is said in the narrative of the physical death and resurrection of Lazarus. Jesus is using the emphatic language οὐ μὴ (not, not = never) and the usual phraseology for saying something will occur or endure forever (εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα, into the age). He is stating his main point that of that passage that since he is the resurrection then believers will never die again. That precludes those interpretation of eternal life in John as simply a qualitative life of eternal blessing. Eternal life necessarily involves never dying again and John is at pains to emphasize that only believers will indeed live forever. // The verses of "eternal destruction" .. don't mean as you erroneously interpret "not live forever".. but it means "destruction of the wicked is ongoing for eternity".// Prove it. I do not mean just quote verses but lay out your positive exegesis like I am to show why your reading of these texts are to be read as you say they do. // The context decides whether a text is to be read literally or metaphorically. There is a danger to read a literal meaning as metaphorical because that opens the door to what Peter calls a private (not inspired of God) interpretation.. which you are doing in saying that the wicked don't live forever or exist in the torment of hell forever. That sort of idea has to be read in there without any scriptural support for it on literal or plain reading terms. If any of the Bible teachers and scholars I accept to be teaching sound doctrine suggest to read and follow Rev.Beale's teachings then I might consider it, but until then I stand on what I've learned from them and my own Bible studies with the Lord. // Then you would be interested to note that Beale wrote the following, Some commentators contend that since Revelation sometimes explicitly explains the meaning of an image in a vision there is a “presumption that, where expressions are not explained, they can normally be interpreted according to their natural [i.e., literal] meaning, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise.” Therefore, a number of authors of both popular and scholarly commentaries contend that one should interpret literally except where one is forced to interpret symbolically by clear indications of context. But the results of the analysis above of 1:1 indicate that this rule should be turned on its head: we are told in the book’s introduction that the majority of the material in it is revelatory symbolism (1:12–20 and 4:1–22:5 at the least). Hence, the predominant manner by which to approach the material will be according to a nonliteral interpretative method. Of course, some parts are not symbolic, but the essence of the book is figurative. Where there is lack of clarity about whether something is symbolic, the scales of judgment should be tilted in the direction of a nonliteral analysis. (Beale, G. K. (1999). The book of Revelation: a commentary on the Greek text, p. 52). The thing is Beale does not always consistently exegete the text (who really does) so his arguments have to be evaluated on a case by case basis. It is no different to those highly regarded Evangelical annihilationist commentators on Revelation like Ian Paul and Richard Bauckham. I also made a comment that the flat translation of Sheol, Gehenna, Tartarus, and Hades as hell is a bad translation tradition. You responded with, //In light of all of the many articles on the internet that speak on the subject, your statement can only be described as a succinct opinion that has very little or no doctrinal weight on the matter.// Actually, it is commonly recognized in commentaries that there is a problem with jut translating these words with hell and it has led to problems with exegesis. That tradition entered the English translation tradition with the likes of Wycliffe and Tyndale and over the past 100 years modern translators have been moving away from it. If you start out thinking Luke 16 is about hell because Hades is translated as Hell then you are going to begin with a false assumption that it speaks to hell and the final state of the wicked when it does not such thing. It is literally set in Hades and speaks only to the intermediate state. It pays to be as accurate as one can when exegeting texts and this includes identifying when bad translation is obscuring the teaching in some way. I am willing to continue to explain my exegesis as we go along. God bless.
  5. That is a bad translation tradition.
  6. I wrote, "The highly symbolic nature of the genre warns against just taking a flat reading and there are ample reasons to think John wanted us to read this verse as teaching the destruction of the wicked. " You read torment in Rev 20:10 as a flat, literal statement, do you not? That is what I am talking about. It is what you are doing when you just cite that verse. In his massive commentary on Revelation, considered by most other scholars to be the best on Rev, Beale warns against reading seemingly literal statements in Rev literally. When I have time I will find the quote for you.
  7. Well, my post was about Daniel 12:2. I have engage you on the verses you cite to try and show you why I disagree. That does not mean I do not have verse I can cite. I have done that above in response to your other comments. Here are some of them Matt 3:12; 10:28; 13:40-42; 18:8-9; John 3:16; 2 Thess 8-10; Jude 7; 2 Peter 2:6. These are didactice passages not the apocalyptic genre that Revelation is.
  8. I did not say you only cited one verse, I was admitting that Rev 20:10 is the one verse in the Bible that has any mention of torment in he context of the final fate of the wicked. You cited other verses but none pf them have the language of eternal torment of the all the wicked you need. You are responding to an argument I did not make. I have addressed 2 Thess 1:8-9 and all your texts with reasons why I disagree and wait for you to speak to those specific arguments. Reciting the same texts without addressing my exegesis does not refute my exegesis. I am always will to explain further my exegesis.
  9. No. Christian must accept how the Bible uses its own language. I addressed the question of Luke 16, which you are now ignoring. Luke 16 is literally about the intermediate state, yet in every instance in the NT where the language of death is used of the final state of the wicked it refers to their real death. Matthew 10:28 is clear on that. Do not forget that the resurrect to judgement falls in between the intermediate and the final state so you cannot just assume that the picture of one state automatically transfers to the other state. Death in the Bible just means the loss of life. In judgement contexts is capital punishment is in view. I can explain texts like Matt 10:28 that show this to be true.
  10. My point is simply that you cannot assume one way or another. You have to argue the case first.
  11. //I pointed to Rev.20:10 regarding the eternal torment factor. // Yes you did and I gave several reasons why that verse cannot automatically be interpreted as you read it. If you just move on without addressing those points you can't just come back later as if this verse proves your point. At some point you have to address the arguments I made. //There are other verses such as Mat.25:41 which specifically puts sinners in the same punishment as the devil and his demonic host, 46 speaks of sinners // And? Matthew has already informed us that the fire in Gehenna will destroy the wicked. In Matthew 3:12; 10:28; 13:40-42; and 18:8-9 he specifically teaches that complete destruction is view. Why not let Matthew's own words guide you on what he means with this kind of imagery? Matthew's theology of judgement is another academic interest of mine. //2Thes.1:8-9 speaks of sinners paying the penalty of eternal destruction (in hell).// Paul does not mention hell but I do agree that he is speaking to the final fate of the wicked. Notice that this eternal destruction is inflicted on the wicked on that day Christ returns. See verse 10. How do you suppose that destruction can happen just on that day when he comes if it is an eternal destroying? Is it not much less of a contradiction to say they will be destroyed completely forever? 2 Thessalonians 1:10 "when he comes on that day to be glorified in his saints, and to be marveled at among all who have believed, because our testimony to you was believed." When you are arguing from the verse you cite make sure you include all the relevant detail. //The wording of Jn.5:29 is strongly similar to Dan.12:2.// Daniel 12:2 "And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt." John 5:29 "and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment." Again, and? Notice that in both Daniel 12:2 and John 5:29 only the righteous receive life. The wicked do not. John has already been clear that those not believing in Christ will perish (John 3:16) and will go on to say that only believers will not die again in the next age (John 11:26). I can explain my exegesis of these verses in more depth if you wish. Suffice to say, John is saying the wicked will die, not live forever.
  12. //I appeal to the new testament texts as does the apostle Paul or other writers of the epistles... // No. The NT authors appeal to the OT, so much so that it has become a specialized field of study in NT research. There is even a massive commentary on the use of the OT by the NT edited by D. A. Carson now available. By comparison the NT authors barely quote each other. // because we are all living under the new covenant of God through Jesus Christ and not under the old covenant as if there was no new covenant.// We know about the new covenant by examining how the NT authors use he OT to develop their theology not just by the mere fact they do appeal to the OT. I am not denying anything you are saying here. //The new testament explains more accurately through greater revelation than that of the old. But perhaps you prefer to avoid what's in the new because it doesn't agree with your premise.// The thing is, when you look at how the NT authors do use the OT when speaking of the final fate of the wicked it is always taking up language and imagery speaking to complete destruction and they always use this imagery to speak of utter destruction. You never get them changing this language so it means eternal conscious torment, ever. Check it out for yourself in verses like Matthew 3:12; 13:40-42; John 3:14-16; 2 Thess 1:9; Jude 7; 2 Peter 2:5-6; Rev 14:11; c.f. Rev 19:3. This is an academic interest of mine. I research and write on it, which involves reading a lot of material on the topic and exegeting all the relevant texts. How much research have you done on the topic?
  13. The Hebrew word for abhorrence literally only appears elsewhere in Danial 12:2. It does not appear in Job. "Concerning Is.66:24.. The worm shall not die and the fire not be quenched because both feed on those who rebelled while they were alive on the earth. Though physically alive they were spiritually dead by choice and without God in the world." That is flat out wrong. The worms and fire literally consume corpses. Trying to claim, this is a reference to the living is special pleading. Isaiah 66:24 "And they shall go out and look on the dead bodies of the men who have rebelled against me. For their worm shall not die, their fire shall not be quenched, and they shall be an abhorrence to all flesh. " They are literally corpses. "Thus their punishment is torment in Hell without God, sharing in the punishment of satan and all of his demons.. who remain in Hell eternally." Since your premise is wrong then your conclusion has no grounding. Your argument falls over. Besides, even if your premise was true you would still have a non sequitur. The conclusion of eternal conscious punishment is not necessarily true just because sinners might be physically alive while spiritually dead. The conclusion does not follow the premise.
  14. In Ephesians 2:1 Paul is using the concept of death to metaphorically speak of the unreceptiveness of sinners to God because of their transgressions and sins. Just like a corpse cannot respond to the living so also the dead cannot respond to God. That is why they are made alive in Christ (Eph 2:5) and brought close to God (v13). Luke 16 is literally set in Hades (mistakenly translated as Hell in some translations) and therefore is concerned with the intermediate state. The last judgment literally is concerned with the final state of sinners. Go to passages like Matthew 3:12: 10:28; and, 13:40-42 and you will see this final state is their death and destruction.
  15. I never denied the punishment is everlasting. Being dead forever is everlasting death. If capital punishment is the final punishment, and it is not reversed it is literally everlasting punishment. You are correct, the contempt from the living is upon those who got their just recompense from God. That is my point. Everlasting contempt is not something you necessarily feel, Un the context of Is 66:24 it describes the disposition of the living towards the dead.
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