Please consider the following Subtopics for an explanation regarding each aspect for a deeper understanding, thank you:
(i) Tree of Iife
“And Jehovah God saith, ‘Lo, the man was as one of Us, as to the knowledge of good and evil; and now, lest he send forth his hand, and have taken also of the tree of life, and eaten, and lived to the age,’ –” (Genesis 3:22, YLT)
“‘He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, I will grant to eat of the tree of life which is in the Paradise of God.” (Revelation 2:7, NASB)
Firstly, you are claiming that the “age” in Genesis 3:22 must be forever since if not, it doesn’t make sense to you. Whether it makes sense to us or not is not the question but only that it’s mentioned to the ‘age’, that’s all.
God didn’t want Adam to continue a sinner to the age. If that was the case, the misery of every man would be longer in sin before they could die. So, by not allowing them to eat the tree of life in that ‘sinful state’, God being Merciful shortens a man’s mortal life in sin to reduce his suffering in it.
The fact that believers who overcome may eat of the tree of life (Revelation 2:7) to get “age-during life” agrees with the phrase “lived to the age” as found in (Genesis 3:22) as implied even in John 6:47.
What happens next?
Believers who have age-during life will be ‘raised up at the Last Day’ (of that age, implied):
“he who is eating My Flesh, and is drinking By Blood, hath life age-during, and I will raise him up in the Last Day” (John 6:54, YLT)
Please note that in verse above, if ‘age-during life’ itself meant ‘eternal life’, there is NO reason to raise him up at the ‘Last Day’ (of that age), right?
This raising up at the Last Day (of the next age when the age-during life vs age-during punishment for men ends, Matthew 25:46) —-> None Will be Lost eventually (e.g. All men Saved, 1 Timothy 2:4, 1 Timothy 4:10, 1 Corinthians 15:21 – 22, 1 Corinthians 15:49, Romans 5:18 – 19):
“‘all that the Father doth give to Me will come unto Me; and him who is coming unto Me, I may in no wise cast without,
And this is the Will of the Father Who sent Me, that all that He hath given to Me I may not lose of it, but may raise it up in the Last Day;” (John 6:37, 39, YLT)
This is NOT limited to ‘those with faith without seeing only’ but also those ‘who believe in Him after seeing [or beholding] Him in the [afterlife, implied]’ in verse below (agreeing to John 3:14 – 15 and John 12:32 too in principle of John 20:29 too):
“and this is the Will of Him Who sent Me, that every one who is beholding the Son, and is believing in Him, may have life age-during, and I will raise him up in the Last Day.” (John 6:40, YLT)
This ‘Raising up at the Last Day’ (of their respective ‘age of punishment’, John 6:39, in the END, 1 Corinthians 15:24) also applies to ‘all’ (John 3:35, 1 Corinthians 15:28) which are given to Him and He never casts them out upon their Return (John 6:37, 1 Corinthians 15:25 – 27) in the world too (John 6:51, 1 John 2:2, 1 John 4:14, Colossians 1:16 with Colossians 1:20). Don’t these verses match Perfectly and Beautifully?
More details regarding this ‘believing’ part:
Also, the Tree of life cannot mean ‘eternal life’ because it itself is a creation. ONLY God has immortality and NOT the tree of life also:
“Who [God] only is having Immortality, dwelling in light unapproachable, whom no one of men did see, nor is able to see, to whom is honour and might age-during! Amen.” (1 Timothy 6:16, YLT)
“and to the King of the ages, the Incorruptible [Immortal], invisible, only wise God, is honour and glory — to the ages of the ages! Amen.” (1 Timothy 1:17, YLT)
Please note that the phrase ‘age-during might’ is highlighted in 1 Timothy 6:16 in YLT because of the phrases “thou keep the command” (verse 14) and “till the manifestation of our Lord Jesus Christ” (verse 14) with “which in His own times He shall shew” (verse 15) implies —-> the word “till” (verse 14) He is Manifested (His Glorious Return) is at the END of this ‘age’ —> so the His Might (or Power) is highlighted to ‘the end of the age’ till this ‘happens’ as claimed.
It also means that we are to keep “His New Testament Commands” (implied by the phrase ‘thou keep the Command, verse 14) till this ‘end of the age’ when He Returns too.
Regarding the ‘unseen (creation)’ only lasting to the age (being in ‘vanity’ and hence not eternal as popularly erred too against Ecclesiastes 1:2, Romans 8:20 where the definition of ALL is ‘all created things’, Colossians 1:16 EXCEPT God, 1 Corinthians 15:27) which will be made Subject to Him when He becomes ‘All in All’ eventually (1 Corinthians 15:28, through His Great Reconciliation, Colossians 1:20), please consider:
In other words, the tree of life does NOT give you eternal life but the ‘age-during life’ as it was originally intended but you live thereafter because of Him Who imputes His Life into us (1 Corinthians 15:45, John 6:57) through the Spiritual Body eventually too (1 Corinthians 15:44) —> living eternally in that New Spiritual Body which is Incorruptible by Sin (1 Corinthians 15:53). Indeed, ‘we live eternally because He lives’ and NOT ‘due to the fruit of the tree of life which contains eternal life’ which is just a ‘created thing’ (Can you see it?):
“As the Living Father sent Me, and I Live because of the Father, so he who eats Me, he also will live because of Me.” – Lord Jesus Christ (John 6:57, NASB)
(ii) Stronger Greek Words for Eternal are NOT used to describe the Actual Judgment Sentencing in the Bible
This Fact Alone is enough to prove the truth of an end to the punishment.
The Verse in 1 Timothy 1:17 clearly shows a distinction between the word “ages” (plural, where each successive age itself has a beginning and end respectively) and the Greek Word ‘Incorruptible’ which is closer in meaning to Immortal as well.
Apart from the above occurrences, these ‘stronger’ words for ‘immortality and incorruptibly’ exists in particular in 1 Corinthians 15 —> e.g. 1 Corinthians 15:52, 1 Corinthians 15:53 – 54 —> where the phrase “age-during life” (or ‘eternal life’) does NOT occur at all in 1 Corinthians 15 meaning that this is NOT what apostle Paul is referring to here —-> and these words are NEVER used in the context of [afterlife] Judgment or Punishment either.
The Fact that these ‘stronger’ Greek Words which may imply eternity but is NEVER used in the Bible for the Actual Punishment Sentences for men proves that ‘no’ punishment sentence is eternal.
Please note that even in Josephus’ writings, we find such stronger Greek words being used to mean ‘eternity toward the afterlife punishment for men’ (as employed by the Jewish Sects as pointed out by Dr J W Hanson) but the Bible does NOT do that. To see this in detail, please consider the write-ups below too:
(iii) The Next Age is NOT eternal
Age-during Life (Luke 18:30).
The Fact that ‘age-during life’ vs ‘age-during punishment’ (Matthew 25:46) is NOT mentioned in 1 Corinthians 15 is rather astounding —-> simply because 1 Corinthians 15:1 begins by stating “Now I make known to you, brethren, the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received, in which also you stand” [which establishes the Context of the ‘Gospel’ here] —–> Now, does the NO mention of age-during life vs age-during punishment prove that these are NOT part of the Gospel?
It is interesting that apostle Paul ‘skips’ the age-during life vs age-during punishment part entirely in the ‘full declaration’ of the Gospel in this chapter which is NOT ‘only’ 1 Corinthians 15:1 – 11, but that it continues to explain the END (1 Corinthians 15:24) of the Gospel too —> which is God being “All in All” (1 Corinthians 15:28) where the rest of the chapter deals with the details of how is this so especially with regards to “All men” (1 Corinthians 15:21 – 22, 1 Corinthians 15:49).
Why is this so?
Perhaps apostle Paul is focusing on the Good News Part only (Gospel) way past the temporal “age of punishment vs rewards” (next age) —> because the ‘age-during Judgment part’ is NOT something which extends into eternity and thus it’s part of the ‘elementary or basic teaching’ which he ‘skips’ seeing past it for the Real PERMANENT and ETERNAL Focus of the Gospel (i.e. God being ‘All in All’ eventually in 1 Corinthians 15) —> This fact that ‘age-during Judgment’ (and NOT eternal Judgment) is a BASIC & ELEMENTARY teaching (and NOT a great and deep thought as some err in assuming thus) is clearly seen in verse below:
“Wherefore, having left the word of the beginning of the Christ, unto the perfection we may advance, not again a foundation laying of reformation from dead works, and of faith on God, of the teaching of baptisms, of laying on also of hands, of rising again also of the dead, and of judgment age-during, and this we will do, if God may permit,” (Hebrews 6:1 – 3, YLT)
Please note that the author of Hebrews describes this age-during Judgment in fire next in Hebrews 6:4 – 8 as a warning toward believers who fall away proving that this punishment is to the age only agreeing with say Luke 12:46 (for fallen believers punished together with unbelievers) till the last penny (and NOT forever, Luke 12:59) based on few/many beatings accordingly (and NOT endless beatings, Luke 12:47 – 48). Can’t you see it?
So, apostle Paul is speaking way beyond the temporal “age of punishment vs rewards” (next age) in 1 Corinthians 15 FOCUSING on the PERMANENT or ETERNAL Part of the GOSPEL and HOW this is ACHIEVED by CHRIST ALONE (Can you see that he ‘skips’ the age-during punishment vs age-during life in this explanation because these things are NOT the eternal part of the GOSPEL at all!) —–> “where this next age is NOT eternal” (Luke 18:30, Matthew 12:32, Matthew 25:46) —> simply because it must END giving way to another age after that as there are ‘ages to come’ (future-plural) which does NOT include the current age (Ephesians 2:7) —> being against and refuting your ‘eternal life claim’ based on the NON-Biblical assumption that the ‘next age is eternal’, in case you didn’t realize it either (pointed out clearly here). Also, Ephesians 2:7 is a Factual statement and NOT a figure of speech at all.
Let’s put it like this toward those ‘professors’ who say that the “ages to come” statement in Ephesians 2:7 is just a figure of speech and not that there are two ages to come (though almost all Bible translations translate it factually as thus) —–> On Judgment Day, if God says that the phrase “ages to come” (in Ephesians 2:7) means that the next age ends and at least another age follows after that, then that professor MUST go to the LAKE OF FIRE for LYING so seriously and vice versa for me if God says that it was ‘only a colloquial speech’ —-> Now, does the professor dare to say that it’s a ‘figure of speech’?
Why do I put it as thus is simply because if we preach it in His Name as thus, we must be RESPONSIBLE for our teaching (James 3:1). If I do NOT put such a serious consequence (please bear in mind that I am also putting myself on the line and not your professors ‘only’ when requesting so), we find ourselves just ‘simply making figures of speech and insulting His Holy Word’.
If your professor is ‘right’, he need NOT fear for standing up for the ‘figure of speech’, ‘colloquial language’ or ‘the idioms excuse’ which he claimed that God used when He said “ages to come” (in Ephesians 2:7), right?
Can you see it?
I am not asking for an oath but only a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ will do with regards to the question is the “ages to come” a figure of speech where the next age is eternal?
He has the ‘number of believers’ and the ‘scholarship’ to prove that the ‘ages to come’ does NOT mean that ‘there are at least two ages to come’ but that the ‘next age is eternal and that was only a figure of speech, right? Then why ‘fear’ if it’s the truth (Proverbs 28:1) and may your ‘yes or no’ decide your fate accordingly as it does to me on this question (Matthew 12:37).
Please be wise before you answer wrongly and come under unnecessary Judgment as His Word in Luke 12:59 in the context of [afterlife] Judgment (Luke 12:46 – 48) itself proves that the ‘age-during punishment’ being described in a parabolic way in this chapter clearly speaks of it to have an END which is signified by the word UNTIL —> yes, ONLY UNTIL one pays the last penny (Luke 12:59) proving further that the next punishment age CANNOT be eternal. Can you see it? (How a verse which does NOT contain the phrase age-during punishment at all but speaks of this SAME TOPIC with regards to [afterlife] Judgment implies an END to the duration of the next age itself).
They cannot enter Heaven next though their punishment sentence has ended (Luke 12:59) because NO one by their ‘own righteousness’ can enter heaven either (Romans 3:20, Romans 3:28) as He challenged the Pharisees and others too in (Matthew 5:20).
Matthew 5:20 means that if anyone can exceed even the Pharisees level of observing the Law, they will be allowed into Heaven but FACT is NO ONE will ever be able to exceed even the Righteousness of the Pharisees to be able to do so either as Romans 3:20 and Romans 3:28 clearly imply. This is probably to ‘give a chance’ to any human being who think that God should allow them to enter heaven on account that ‘they are good’. So He gave a mere human benchmark (the Pharisees) for us to exceed that Righteousness which NONE ever will be able to do so as prophesied Prophetically by Apostle Paul Himself in Romans 3:20 and Romans 3:28.
Thus we need a Righteousness without the Law (and NOT from us at all) to enter heaven which is known to His Prophets (Romans 3:21) —> as the Righteousness of God Himself (where Christ Alone Gets the Perfect Score, having First Place in Everything including this too, Colossians 1:18) by Fulfilling ALL Law & Prophets Perfectly by then, Matthew 5:17) —-> and then FREELY IMPUTES (Romans 3:24) this Righteousness upon ALL eventually (Romans 3:23) —> where ONLY believers get it on ‘earth itself’ being ‘elected by Grace’ as a proof of it (Romans 3:26).
Please see the Conclusion especially a post Explaining this Faith of Jesus Christ which Justifies ALL eventually (and NOT ‘believers only’, Romans 3:23) and FREELY too as HIS PERFECT GIFT (Romans 3:24, James 1:17) which CANNOT be REVOKED for whatever reason (Romans 11:29) toward ‘ALL who sinned in the WORLD’ (Romans 3:19 & Romans 3:23) as the IRREFUTABLE CONTEXT of CONSECUTIVE VERSES from Romans 3 itself proves.
That’s the meaning of His MERCY by which ONLY we are SAVED in the END as it is for believers too (mentioned clearly in Titus 3:5) and ‘our righteousness’ only determines the ‘level-reward’ in being ‘least-greatest’ with respect to having ‘broken-kept’ all Law and Prophets which pertain to us (Matthew 5:18, context) respectively as it is WRITTEN Gloriously by HIS MERCIFUL WORDS itself in Matthew 5:19.
(iv) Spirit may be Saved
“who will give account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead. For to this end the gospel was proclaimed even to the dead, so that they might be judged indeed according to men in the flesh, but they might live in the spirit according to God.” (1 Peter 4:5 – 6, BLB)
Please note that “the dead” in verse 5 and verse 6 are the SAME dead and NOT the ‘spiritually dead’ or ‘the Old Testament saints’ or ‘other out of context claims’ which are NOT Written in these ‘consecutive verses’ (perfect context).
Satan’s Role in Destruction eventually leads to ‘the spirit being Saved by Lord Jesus Christ’ as mentioned in verse below agreeing with 1 Peter 4:6 & John 6:39 too:
“I have decided to deliver such a one to Satan for the destruction of his flesh, so that his spirit may be saved in the Day of the Lord Jesus.” – apostle Paul (1 Corinthians 5:5, NASB)
The word ‘may’ does NOT exist in Greek and to understand this further, please consider the posts below for details:
Even more regarding this, please consider:
(v) The Forever and Ever verses
Do allow me to clarify it again regarding the “age and beyond that”.
Regarding God or His Kingdom or His Glory being described as ‘forever and ever’, please consider the example Verses as follows:
“Jehovah is king to the age, and for ever, The nations have perished out of His land!” (Psalm 10:16, YLT)
“And in the days of these kings raise up doth the God of the heavens a kingdom that is not destroyed — to the age, and its kingdom to another people is not left: it beateth small and endeth all these kingdoms, and it standeth to the age.” (Daniel 2:44, YLT)
“That this God is our God — To the age and for ever, He — he doth lead us over death!” (Psalm 48:14, YLT)
“Before mountains were brought forth, And Thou dost form the earth and the world, Even from age unto age Thou art God.” (Psalm 90:2, YLT)
Fore mostly, please note that unless you can show a Verse describing the duration of [afterlife] punishment being described by a same stronger compound phrases as some of the various phrases which occur in verses above, your claim for eternal Hell does NOT hold true.
The ONLY phrase which describes [afterlife] punishment is the weakest-singular-age for men as it is described thus:
“’And the multitude of those sleeping in the dust of the ground do awake, some to life age-during, and some to reproaches — to abhorrence age-during.” (Daniel 12:2, YLT)
In some of the Verses above, the Hebrew Word “Olam” or “age” occurs and its equivalent Greek is Aion or Eon which has a beginning and an end.
The Hebrew Phrase occurring in Psalm 10:16 and Psalm 48:14, is the ‘stronger’ phrase ‘to the age, and for ever’ where the latter part may be translated as ‘for ever’ but more accurately as ‘continually, permanently, always’ in the sense of ‘so it remains’ or ‘so it shall be’ as the word for this later part is NOT ‘Olam’ (which is the first part, ‘age’) but ‘wā·‘eḏ;’ which means ‘permanently’.
And so, these translations are NOT wrong. But this phrases are NEVER used to describe the DURATION for afterlife punishments so quoting them do NOT prove eternal Hell at all (a common fallacy).
Also, please note that if ‘Olam’ or ‘Ow-lam’ itself means “forever”, then why do we need the Hebrew word ‘wā·‘eḏ;’ to follow it thereafter to be translated as another forever or “ever”?
Isn’t the Word Olam which means ‘forever’ enough to describe perpetuity by itself in Psalm 10:16 and Psalm 48:14?
Truth is, ‘Olam’ only means ‘to the age’ by itself and thus the inspired authours add the word ‘wā·‘eḏ;’ (which means ‘permanently’) to follow it thereafter to exclaim a continuity ‘beyond the age’ when they intend to emphasize that as emphasizing (and NOT limiting) God from ‘age to age’ as this was the common Hebrew Way as even Psalm 90:2 clearly implies.
The inspired authors spoke of God in terms of age to age and highlighting His Power or Glory to the “age” NOT with the intention of limiting Him but rather in highlighting Him to that specific time period (as they did in say calling Him the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob) simply because His Covenants are to the age & they also foresaw a New Covenant later.
Now regarding Daniel 2:44, the phrase “that is not destroyed” is NOT needed if the Hebrew Word ‘Olam’ itself meant ‘eternal here’. In other words, the phrase “that is not destroyed, — to the age” (YLT) means that His Kingdom Will NOT be destroyed (remains permanently) even to the age too (highlighted). His Kingdom which “standeth to the age” (YLT) in the latter part of the Verse is mentioned in Comparison to ALL other Kingdoms which will NOT
stand by the end of that age (a comparison clearly implied in the highlight or emphasis).
A Related post:
“according to a purpose of the ages, which He made in Christ Jesus our Lord,” (Ephesians 3:11, YLT)
This practice of highlighting His Glory or Power according to the Purpose of the Ages especially with regards to His Kingdom is very clearly seen in verse below (which is poorly translated since ‘how many forever’s do we need in a sentence?):
“But the saints of the most High shall take the kingdom, and possess the kingdom for ever, even for ever and ever.” (Daniel 7:18, KJV)
To see a detailed explanation with a better translation too regarding this, please consider:
(vi) The age or ages Verses
ONLY Scripture determines its meaning
Here’s an example of the EXACT same phrase used to describe God and something which is NOT eternal within the SAME verse where the explanation of “highlighting is meant when it is used for God” while “a definition of duration when it is used for the object” (e. g. Hills in this case) is clearly shown to be SCRIPTURAL by USAGE proving this claim irrefutably as Scripture must have only ONE meaning as per its USAGE.
(1) Regarding Olam derivations
The same word ‘Olam’ is used for God & Hills in the ‘same’ verse
“He stood, and measured the earth: He beheld, and drove asunder the nations; and the everlasting mountains were scattered, the perpetual hills did bow: His ways are everlasting.” (Habakkuk 3:6, KJV)
So based on their logic, are God’s Ways lasting only as long as those ‘everlasting hills’?
Fact is in the verse above itself, we see that the ‘everlasting hills’ are ‘scattered’ (‘no’ more) meaning that the translation is wrong as those mountains are ‘not’ everlasting, being ‘scattered’.
The correct meaning is ‘age-during’ where ‘His Ways’ are emphasized (or highlighted) to the ‘age’ with the analogy of the mountains lasting to the ‘age’ as by His Ways, the mountains were scattered thereafter ‘after the age’ & ‘fulfilling His Purpose in His Ways’ (an analogy drawn in verse above clearly).
The fact that ‘nothing’ of the current creation remains ‘eternally’ (e.g. those ‘everlasting mountains too’) may be clearly seen from Scripture because He makes a ‘new earth’ (Revelation 21:1) removing all these eventually! Yes, ‘all the former things’ will be gone as He does (Isaiah 43:18, Revelation 21:4) this & will be replaced anew as Scripture promises and agrees perfectly (Revelation 21:5)!
(2) Regarding “aion” (Matthew 25:46)
The punishment is NOT eternal but to the “age” is evidenced by ‘other passages’ such as Luke 12:59 which defines the duration IRREFUTABLY as “terminating”, i. e. “till the last penny is paid ONLY”.
The life “age-during” highlights the life to that age. We know that we don’t die thereafter NOT because of the definition of the word “age as eternal” but because there are other verses describing immortality like the one below within the same verse too:
“to those, indeed, who in continuance of a good work, do seek glory, and honour, and incorruptibility — life age-during;” (Romans 2:7, YLT)
Please note that “incorruptibility” (speaks more of ‘immortality without sin’) —> which though we seek it, we get the “age-during life” (reward of life during the time period of an age with blessings to know Him) first —-> the Immortality part is established by the Gracious Giving of God filling the ”Immortality” (which belongs to Him ONLY, 1 Timothy 6:16) into us when He ‘fills all things’ (Ephesians 4:10, Ephesians 1:23) too eventually till God becomes ‘all in all’ (1 Corinthians 15:28) proving this Biblical Truth again.
Yes, immortality (without sin, “imperishable” or “incorruptible”) in a “spiritual body*” being clothed upon us in that Way is clearly described (implied) in the quoted Scriptures and this applies to “All men” eventually and NOT ‘believers only’ (Context: 1 Corinthians 15:21) where the “spirit ONLY” remains (1 Peter 3:19) after the ‘body + soul’ (‘flesh’, 1 Peter 4:6) is destroyed first in Hell (Matthew 10:28). These ‘spirits’ are NOT disobedient anymore (1 Peter 3:20) proving that repentance is possible in the afterlife and the first occurence of this (1 Peter 3:19 – 20, and NOT the only occurence of it as popularly erred) —-> is generalized for “the dead” likewise in 1 Peter 4:5 – 6, where these ‘hear the Gospel’, then are punished in Hell (implied) where thereafter their ‘spirit’ lives to God post-Judgment as it is Written.
The dead in 1 Peter 4:6 is NOT the spiritually dead but the ‘physically dead’ as the SAME dead is mentioned first in 1 Peter 4:5 (correct irrefutable context) toward whom such a Hope is described (1 Corinthians 15:19, Acts 24:15, Romans 4:5).
Please note that the Word or phrase “age-during” life (or ‘eternal life’) does NOT occur anywhere in 1 Corinthians 15 proving that this can’t be used to prove the immortality achieved which is described by ‘way stronger Greek words ONLY in this chapter’ which is the ‘Definition of the Gospel’ (1 Corinthians 15:1) to the “End” (of the Gospel, 1 Corinthians 15:24) where God becomes “all in all” (1 Corinthians 15:28).
The rest of the chapter explains the “details with regards to Various aspects” how this is achieved.
Thus, age-during life is a life of reward to the next age (highlighted, John 6:51, John 6:58) where we don’t die thereafter because ‘we live because He lives by believing in Him’ (John 6:50, John 6:57) —> as He said, ‘he who believes in Me shall never die & even if he dies, he shall live’ (John 11:25 – 26) till ‘immortality’ (without sin) is conferred upon us on the ‘Last Day’ (John 6:58, 1 Corinthians 15:53) —> where the ‘spiritual body’ (1 Corinthians 15:44) as described which is toward ‘all men’ too (1 Corinthians 15:21 – 22, 1 Corinthians 15:49) though not all at the same time (‘different order’, 1 Corinthians 15:23) —-> and the rest of creation as well (as implied in God being ‘all in all’, eventually, 1 Corinthians 15:28, Romans 8:20 – 21).
(3) ages of Ages (Revelation 11:5, Revelation 20:10)
Again the duration of “ages to Ages” is defined to have an “end” (1 Corinthians 15:24) according to the Purpose of His “Reign” (the Verb) to the “ages” (Luke 1:33) which is only “until” (an ‘end’, 1 Corinthians 15:24) His Enemies are under His Feet (1 Corinthians 15:25, Revelation 20:10, Revelation 11:15) where thereafter, His “Kingdom” (the Noun, Luke 1:33) has “no end” (God being ‘all in all’ after the Subjection of All things to Him in Love, 1 Corinthians 15:26 – 28).
(vii) Church History
History is written by victors and thus it is hard to find the earliest Christian’s view on this but some are still existent as it is described a little here:
Some example quotes:
“These, if they will, may go Christ’s way, but if not let them go their way. In another place perhaps they shall be baptized with fire, that last baptism, which is not only painful, but enduring also; which eats up, as if it were hay, all defiled matter, and consumes all vanity and vice. –Gregory of Nazianzeu, Bishop of Constantinople.” (330 to 390 A.D.) Oracles 39:19
St. Basil the Great (c. 329-379) in his De Asceticis wrote: “The mass of men (Christians) say that there is to be an end of punishment to those who are punished.”
“There are very many in our day, who though not denying the Holy Scriptures, do not believe in endless torments.” — Augustine (354-430 A.D.)
“He, indeed, saves all; but some [He saves], converting them by punishments; others, however, who follow voluntarily [He saves] with dignity of honour; so “that every knee should bow to Him, of things in heaven, and things on earth, and things under the earth;” Philippians 2:10 that is, angels, men, and souls that before His advent have departed from this temporal life.” – Clement of Alexandria (150 – 215)
(viii) Lake of Fire and His Mercy
This is the Irrefutable Part – where your eternal Hell doctrine ENDS.
I’m serious, NO man can refute this with ANY analysis. This is because even if (suppose for argument sake) the punishment sentence means “forever and ever” or “forever” —> His Mercy can Triumph Over (and END) any [afterlife] Judgment Sentence as it is explained below:
Last but not least,
Here’s an interesting note regarding James 2:13 which easily refutes any false claims of ‘context’ against it, please consider:
“For [afterlife] judgment will be merciless to one who has shown no mercy; mercy triumphs over [afterlife] judgment.” – apostle James (James 2:13, NASB)
Please note that in James 2:13, if the “judgment” in the first sentence “For judgment will be merciless to one who has shown no mercy” —-> refers to the [afterlife] Judgment —> then, the “judgment” in the second sentence “mercy triumphs over judgment” in this ‘same verse’ —-> must also refer to [afterlife Judgment] as well —-> with no twisting nor manipulations of any kind. Can you see it?
“The next day John [the Baptist] saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” – apostle John (John 1:29, NIV)
‘Where are the verses for your claim?’ – Anonymous
Eventually —> “His Mercy” will apply to “All” eventually (this is the Last Word of [afterlife] Judgment) —-> even Triumphing over that [afterlife] Judgment, ending it too as ‘it is Written’:
“For God has shut up all in disobedience so that He may show mercy to all.” – appostle Paul (Romans 11:32, NASB)
“For God hath concluded them all in unbelief, that he might have mercy upon all.” – apostle Paul (Romans 11:32, KJV)
It is clearly defined in verses above that the “all” who are in “unbelief” (KJV) or in “disobedience” (NASB) —–> are the ones who will be shown “His Mercy” eventually —> by which “[afterlife] Judgment” is “Triumphed over” (or “Ends”) —-> as ‘it is Written’ in verse below too:
“For judgment will be merciless to one who has shown no mercy; mercy triumphs over judgment.” – apostle James (James 2:13, NASB)
*Even if for argument sake a Judgment sentence is ‘eternal Hell’ (which speaks of ‘what we deserve for our sins’) —> we can clearly see by verses above that “His Mercy” can “Triumph” (and ‘end’) —> any [afterlife] Judgment sentence as ‘His Will’ demands because ‘He is the Unchangeable Merciful One, the Blessed Saviour of the World’:
“We have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son to be the Savior of the world” – apostle John (1 John 4:14, NASB)
Making sense of this verse too:
“and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world.” – apostle John (1 John 2:2, NASB)
Can we really understand it?
If God is going to Save All men, then why preach the Gospel?
“For it is for this we labor and strive, because we have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of believers.” — Saul of Tarsus, who later became known as Apostle Paul (1 Timothy 4:10, NASB)
Our final quote is by “God Himself” on the destruction of “Hell” itself. (Sheol in Hebrew, Hades in Greek, grave in English).
From the “King James Version” (their best translated verse in my opinion) with a little correction from “grave” to be replaced with “hell” (The literal Word Here is ONLY SHEOL in Hebrew or equivalently, HADES in Greek, nothing else is meant here):
“I will ransom them from the power of Hell (Sheol in Hebrew/Hades in Greek); I will redeem them from Death: O Death, I will be thy plagues; O Hell, I will be thy destruction: repentance shall be hid from Mine Eyes.” (Hosea 13:14)
God is certainly NOT talking to the ‘grave’ (a non-living object which contains NO living things?) as some of ‘your scholars’ think regarding this verse. It’s completely irrational to claim thus.
The phrase “repentance shall be hid from Mine Eyes” means that God Will not “pity” the “destruction” of both “Hell” and “Death” meaning they will eventually “cease to exist”! (Correlate with the verses in 1 Corinthians 15 below):
“The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.” (1 Corinthians 15:26)
“So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. O Death, where is your sting? O Hell, where is your victory?” (1 Corinthians 15:54 – 55)
Further explanations regarding this (please note that the ‘wicked in Hades/Sheol’ are NOT destroyed together in annihilation but that they will be RANSOMED out or SAVED by Him EVENTUALLY from the Lake of Fire too as Hosea 13:14 explains this RARELY Understood meaning of the ‘Lake of Fire’ when this happens as it is Written Revelation 20:14):
God Will not change from doing it = meaning of ‘repentance is hidden from My Eyes’.
These Truths can ONLY be seen when we COMBINE both the OLD and NEW Testament Verses to see this as It is WRITTEN:
God Will save them from Hades first before destroying it = meaning of ‘Ransom’ (Save, 1 Timothy 2:6 with 1 Timothy 2:4 too in context) from the Power of ‘Sheol’ as it is Destroyed in the Lake of Fire.
Meaning that those Bound by Hades (Revelation 20:13) and Thrown into the Lake of Fire first for the Final Judgment (Revelation 20:14) will be Saved thereafter from this Lake of Fire (as the phrase “I will ransom them from the power of Sheol (Hades, Hell)” in Hosea 13:14 implies) but Hades itself will be Destroyed completely, i.e. cease to exist eventually (as the meaning of ‘repentance is hidden from My Eyes’ means).
God Will save them from ‘Death’ too (including all type of Death, even the Second Death too) = meaning of ‘from Death I Redeem (Save) them’.
Meaning that those Bound by Death (Revelation 20:13) and Thrown into the Lake of Fire (Revelation 20:14) will be Saved from this Lake of Fire (as the phrase “I will redeem them from Death” in Hosea 13:14 implies as well, can you REALLY see it?) but Death itself will be Destroyed completely, cease to exist eventually (as the meaning of ‘repentance is hidden from My Eyes’ means too).
“From the hand of Sheol I do ransom them, From death I redeem them, Where is thy plague, O death? Where thy destruction, O Sheol? Repentance is hid from Mine eyes.” – God (Hosea 13:14, YLT)
Please ponder deeply and be surprised to see that this is what it means when these “factual” verses are ‘literally’ translated. Simple and Deep.
Icing on the cake; by God Himself when He came in Flesh (Lord Jesus Christ):
“And I, if I be lifted up from the earth [Resurrected to the Heavens], [I] will draw all men unto me [He will save all men].” – by the mouth of our Blessed Saviour, Lord Jesus Christ Himself (John 12:32, KJV)
More posts regarding God Saving from the Lake of Fire as described above in a Mysterious Way with other aspects discussed, please consider:
More Posts Regarding His Irrefutable Mercy which Triumphs or End Any afterlife Judgment Sentence (be it the eternal Hell Sentence itself, if true, James 2:13) which is Promised toward ALL (Romans 11:32) eventually post-afterlife Judgment as the Context of Romans 9 – 11 itself implies (More links in posts too for further details and edification):
(ix) Visions of Hell agreeing to this:
Did the Sadhu think there was eternal punishment? — “There was punishment, but it was not eternal…Everyone after this life would be given a fair chance of making good, and attaining to the measure of fullness the soul was capable of. This might sometimes take ages.” – Sadhu Sundar Singh
In 1925 Sundar wrote, “If the Divine spark in the soul cannot be destroyed, then we need despair of no sinner… Since God created men to have fellowship with Himself, they cannot for ever be separated from Him… After long wandering, and by devious paths, sinful man will at last return to Him in whose Image he was created; for this is his final destiny.”
Sundar Singh’s encounter with Christ:
“I returned inside, and the light increased in intensity and took the form of a globe of light above the ground, and in this light there appeared, not the form I expected, but the living Christ whom I had counted as dead.
To all eternity I shall never forget His glorious and Loving Face, nor the few words which He spoke.
‘Why do you persecute Me? See, I have died on the cross for you and for the whole world.’
These words were burned into my heart as by lightning, and I fell on the ground before Him. My heart was filled with inexpressible joy and peace, and my whole life was entirely changed.” (Sundar Singh, as quoted in Thompson, Sadhu Sundar Singh, 18)
Regarding more of Sadhu Sundar Singh’s visions of Hell and the proof of the quotes above too, please refer to the ‘first-original autobiographies of his life’, written by those ‘who met him in real life and walked with him too’ as some images from those books are shown in links below for edification too (regarding sadhu Sundar Singh, who is a credible witness to all this as well, though rarely known):
(x) No afterlife Repentance Possible?
Hebrews 10:26 – 31 and Hebrews 6:2 – 8 is primarily about Jewish believers who will be burned yes, and no repentance for them on the earth, yes.
But, eventually ALL Israel will be Saved (Romans 11:26).
For example, ‘it’s not all Israel who are all Israel, right?’ as it’s written in Romans 9:6? Nope.
Please consider these explanations according to what is ACTUALLY WRITTEN in SCRIPTURE:
Here’s an example of an afterlife repentance by ALL (EVERY Rational Creature with a tongue agreeing to Philippians 2:10 too Perfectly):
“I have sworn by Myself, The word has gone forth from My mouth in righteousness And will not turn back, That to Me every knee will bow, every tongue will swear allegiance.” (Isaiah 45:23, NASB)
Swearing [Allegiance] means that ALL will eventually Return to Him in a ‘Repented’ state and thus ‘Submit’ or be ‘Subject to Him’ (1 Corinthians 15:27 – 28). This CANNOT be a ‘fake’ Confession as God does NOT Oath Fake things by Himself, please be WARNED before TAKING His Holy Name in VAIN by claiming otherwise.
Thus, this Raising up at the Last Day post afterlife age-during life vs age-during punishment must be the part discussed in 1 Corinthians 15:21 with regards to all men too eventually 1 Corinthians 15:22 where this happens at different times for each (in its own order, 1 Corinthians 15:23, 1 Timothy 2:4, 1 Timothy 4:10, Romans 5:18 – 19) —-> which eventually applies in the END (of the respective ‘ages’, implied from His Rule to the ‘ages of Ages’ 1 Corinthians 15:24 with Luke 1:33 and Revelation 11:15) toward ALL in the world too (1 Timothy 2:6, John 3:35 with John 6:37 and John 6:39, 1 Corinthians 15:28, and NOT for ‘those with faith only’ but the whole world too as mentioned MAJESTICALLY in John 6:51, 2 Corinthians 5:19, Colossians 1:16 with Colossians 1:20, Romans 8:20 – 21) —> due to ‘His Mercy toward ALL’ ONLY (Romans 11:32) even toward the ‘obedient and the disobedient’ (Romans 11:30 – 31) including both the believers (Titus 3:5) and the enemies of the Gospel too (Romans 11:28) as part of the ALL which causes both who break & obey His Commands to be ‘least or great’ in His Kingdom of the Heavens respectively (Matthew 5:19).
Isn’t God Perfect in Goodness in that even His Judgment and Wrath (‘all His Burning anger’) —> Saves in the END toward all ‘nations and kingdoms’ on that Day when He is Revealed (e.g. Zephaniah 3:8 – 9)?
Details regarding how God’s Hate itself can Save, please consider:
Please note that the two consecutive verses below clearly prove that the SAME THE MANY is the ALL MEN who are both CONDEMNED due to Adam and JUSTIFIED to LIFE eventually due to CHRIST:
“So then as through one transgression there resulted condemnation to ALL MEN, even so through one act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to ALL MEN.
For as through the one man’s disobedience THE MANY were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One THE MANY will be made righteous.” (Romans 5:18 – 19, NASB)
In Greek, it’s THE MANY that is mentioned and not “many” and the ONLY Biblically Consistent Meaning we can derive for this is that:
ALL MEN (Romans 5:18) = THE MANY (Romans 5:19) by irrefutable consecutive verses context with no adding/removing of any kind.
That is, the SAME the MANY which became SINNERS in ADAM will be MADE RIGHTEOUS in CHRIST (Romans 5:19) or we can say that the SAME ALL MEN who are CONDEMNED in ADAM will be JUSTIFIED to LIFE in CHRIST (Romans 5:18) —> and this is the MEANING of the RESURRECTION of the DEAD (1 Corinthians 15:21) toward ALL MEN (1 Corinthians 15:22, 1 Corinthians 15:49) including the UNGODLY too (Romans 4:5) —> where it is WRITTEN that the SAME ALL who DIE in ADAM is the SAME ALL who will be MADE ALIVE in CHRIST eventually by the Raising Up or Resurrection of the Dead as discussed earlier in Point (i) earlier too:
“For as in Adam ALL die, so also in Christ ALL will be made alive.” (1 Corinthians 15:22, NASB)
This Process WILL BE ACHIEVED by Christ through His Faith (the Faith of Jesus Christ, it’s Faith since it’s NOT Fulfilled yet, and He Believed First Exhibiting Perfect Faith, Colossians 1:18 in Declaring that ‘It is Finished’ seeing into the END, Romans 3:3 – 4, Romans 3:22 regarding ‘Saving the World’, John 3:17, 1 John 4:14) which is toward ALL eventually too and ‘not believers only’ as it is Written in Verse below (which is only seen when accurately translated):
“Even the Righteousness of God which is by Faith of Jesus Christ unto ALL and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:” (Romans 3:22, KJV)
Thus when EVERY KNEE bows to Him and SWEARS ALLEGIANCE (Isaiah 45:23, Philippians 2:10, 1 Corinthians 15:27 – 28) —> ALL will gain His “Righteousness” (Isaiah 45:24) which is the “Righteousness of God” (Romans 3:22) Freely by the “Faith of Jesus Christ”, His Act Alone —> WITHOUT the LAW and PROPHETS, meaning by CHRIST ALONE (Romans 3:21) without our faith in Christ which is given as a gift toward some in the present time, being more special (Romans 3:26) —-> which causes one to be “Saved” (Isaiah 45:22), ‘freely too’ (Romans 3:24) —> at the point of imputation where His Ransom for “ALL” becomes a Testimony (or comes to Pass, Fulfilled) in the Various Divine-Kairois-Plural-Times-Appointed for their Salvation respectively (1 Timothy 2:6), i.e. in their ‘own order’ (different times, 1 Corinthians 15:23) —> till the END (1 Corinthians 15:24) is achieved where it leads eventually to God becoming ALL in ALL (1 Corinthians 15:28).
More regarding this:
P/S: All is not all right?
More regarding ‘all’:
Thank you for Writing in and Peace to you!
Maranatha, Even so Come, Lord Jesus Christ, for Truly, Thou art the Blessed Saviour of the World!