Gehenna as Hell – Salvation Beyond
Doesn’t Gehenna only refer to the physical garbage dump in Jerusalem at the time of Christ as per the 70AD theory?
Sorry guys, you’re quoting the physical Gehenna only (shallow interpretation – physical, shadow ) which in analogy refers to the afterlife punishment regions (deep interpretation, spiritual – substance).
Apostle James himself quotes that the tongue is set on fire from Gehenna (which clearly refers to the afterlife Judgment-part and not the physical dumping ground – the shallow interpretation which is just alluded in analogy – Please see James 3:6, Hell = Gehenna).
Source of that “ill speaking” is not from the physical garbage dump (as carelessly proposed by the 70AD proponents) but rather is due to the spiritual wickedness which is from “Gehenna” (or ‘Hell’) as apostle James Writes Inspiredly (in James 3:6). Please decide for yourselves which interpretation makes ‘sense’ and agrees to Judaism’s view of it too ‘at that time’.
Looks like you guys missed the “deeper” part in the 70 AD theory.
Lord Jesus Christ pronounces afterlife Judgment toward the Pharisees by using the term “Gehenna” proving again that its New Testament usage (His usage of it) refers to afterlife punishment regions in Verse below too (not all Pharisees died in 70 AD at the earthly-physical-Gehenna or around that time & Christ’s Judgment is clearly toward their afterlife punishment as these never got punished by God generally on earth being ‘somewhat immune to earthly Judgment by the Torah as religious leaders’).
I will remain believing in the “Deeper” meaning of “Gehenna” as aforementioned.
(v) How about Gehenna from Jewish Writings in Judaism?
An Example from history:
If Gehenna is Hell, why didn’t God reveal it in an obvious manner in the Old Testament itself as He reveals His secrets to His prophets first, right? (as Amos 3:7 mentions)
Well, He revealed it as Sheol. Gehenna is a region in Sheol.
1) Gehenna Revealed as a Metaphor (or analogy) as an afterlife punishment region in Old Testament times
Example – the Targums
The ancient Aramaic paraphrase-translations of the Hebrew Bible known as Targums supply the term “Gehinnom” frequently to verses touching upon resurrection, judgment, and the fate of the wicked. This may also include addition of the phrase “second death”, as in the final chapter of the Book of Isaiah, where the Hebrew version does not mention either Gehinnom or the Second Death, whereas the Targums add both. In this the Targums are parallel to the Gospel of Mark addition of “Gehenna” to the quotation of the Isaiah verses describing the corpses “where their worm does not die”.
Example – Rabbinical Judaism
The picture of Gehenna as the place of punishment or destruction of the wicked occurs frequently in the Mishnah in Kiddushin 4.14, Avot 1.5; 5.19, 20, Tosefta t. Bereshith 6.15, and Babylonian Talmud b.Rosh Hashanah 16b:7a; b. Bereshith 28b. Gehenna is considered a Purgatory-like place where the wicked go to suffer until they have atoned for their sins. It is stated that the maximum amount of time a sinner can spend in Gehenna is one year. There are also four people who do not get a share in Olam Ha-Ba. Those people are Doeg the Edomite, Ahitophel, Balaam, and Gehazi.
(vi) If their concept of Gehenna is wrong, Christ wouldn’t have mentioned it.
But does it mean that Rabbinical Judaism got the facts regarding Gehenna right?
The Rabbinical writings contain some truth but they missed some part of it.
That’s why when Lord Jesus Christ spoke of Gehenna, He is referring to what they know but corrected their understanding of it and revealed more details as it is Written in New Testament verses.
Some ‘secrets’ regarding Gehenna in the Context of Universal Reconciliation in Christ (Colossians 1:16, Colossians 1:20) may only be known through His Prophets (or Saints) as Amos 3:7 mentions in New Testament times (Colossians 1:26). Yes, the secrets revealed in New Testament times includes the fact that the ‘Gentiles are co-heirs in Christ’ (Colossians 1:27) and that God Will Reconcile All Created things (Colossians 1:16) back to Himself too eventually (Colossians 1:20) as the Context of Consecutive Verses in Colossians implies irrefutably as it is Written Majestically in Holy Scripture as well.
(i) What’s the Difference between Gehenna and Sheol (Hades)?
To quote (Page 34):
“Hanhart (1966:32) states that according to Jeremias, however, it is fundamental
for our understanding of the New Testament to make a sharp distinction between Hades
Hades is used exclusively for the interim period, Gehenna on the other side
for a state of punishment after the last judgment. In Hades, the punishment is provisional, in Gehenna eternal.”
(ii) Can the Messiah [Lord Jesus Christ] Save from Gehenna (the Final Judgment, Lake of Fire) itself?
To quote (Page 38):
“Bernard (1915:290) quotes two passages from the Bereshith Rabba to show that this idea was prominent in Jewish literature. He is, however, unsure of the dating of the literature.
Nevertheless, it still demonstrates the basic purpose of the descent:
‘When they are bound, they that are in Gehinnom, saw the light of the Messiah, they
rejoiced to receive him’; and ‘This is that which stands written, We shall rejoice and exult thee.
When the captives climb out of hell, and the Shechinah at their head.’
The only difference here is that the captives are in Gehinnom and not Sheol.”
Do you believe in ECT (Eternal Conscious Torment)?
No, I don’t believe in ECT bro.
I believe in Universal Reconciliation in Lord Jesus Christ Alone but for some, it’s only after Afterlife Judgments be it in Hades now or Gehenna (Lake of Fire) at the Second Death later at the end of this age.
This is the same “Purgatorial Hell Universalism” which was believed in earliest Christianity according to New Testament Scriptures.
As ‘history is written by later ECT Victors’, much of details relating to this is lost.
Regarding Hell in Church History, please consider the write up below:
Here are some quotes from the earliest authorities in Doctrine agreeing to this belief where Greek was ‘more of their mother tongue’ too (Can you see it ‘irrefutably’? Deep, if you ‘understand’ this):
“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.” – St. Clement of Alexandria, called the 2nd or 3rd Greek ‘father’ [I don’t like this term] of the Church by later historians (150 – 215)
“For the wicked there are punishments, not perpetual, however, lest the immortality prepared for them should be a disadvantage, but they are to be purified for a brief period according to the amount of malice in their works. They shall therefore suffer punishment for a short space, but immortal blessedness having no end awaits them…the penalties to be inflicted for their many and grave sins are very far surpassed by the magnitude of the mercy to be showed to them.” –Diodore of Tarsus, 320-394 A.D.
“And God showed great kindness to man, in this, that He did not suffer him to continue being in sin forever; but as it were, by a kind of banishement, cast him out of paradise in order that, having punishment expiated within an appointed time, and having been disciplined, he should afterwards be recalled…just as a vessel, when one being fashioned it has some flaw, is remoulded or remade that it may become new and entire; so also it happens to man by death. For he is broken up by force, that in the resurrection he may be found whole; I mean spotless, righteous and immortal.” –Theophilus of Antioch (168 A.D.)
“Wherefore also he drove him out of paradise and removed him far from the tree of life, not because He envied him the tree of life, as some dare assert, but because He pitied him and desired that he should not be immortal and the evil interminable and irremediable.” St.Iraneaus of Lyons – the first Greek father & author of the infamous treatise, “Against Heresies”.(182 A.D.)
“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.
Here’s An Irrefutable Historical Fact (NO phD can change this – try it, LOL):
The Biggest ‘Hidden’ Truth regarding this is that —-> Even these two ‘eternal Hell theologians’ (more Latin based than Greek based) —-> St. Basil the Great and St. Augustine of Hippo —> ADMITTED in their “own writings” (LOL) that CHRIST CENTERED UNIVERSALISM is the MAJORITY DOCTRINE even in THEIR OWN REGIONS during their lifetime (Are we that ‘blind’ to the ECT heroes themselves ‘admitting’ to this as well?), here they are:
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.”
“… some, indeed very many … say they do not believe it [eternal torment] shall be so; not, indeed, that they directly oppose themselves to Holy Scripture.” (Augustine, “The Enchiridion,” ch. 112, p. 273)
Please note carefully that even Augustine of Hippo himself does NOT DARE claim that the VERY MANY (a majority at that time in his location too – can you see it?) who do NOT believe in ENDLESS TORMENTS are heretics.
Augustine and other theologians are very quick to condemn those who oppose them to an ‘eternal hell’ but yet in regards to these MANY Christians who do NOT believe in eternal Hell, he dared NOT say that they are heretics —> and in fact says that these do “NOT” —-> “directly oppose themselves to Holy Scripture” —> which means that even in his eyes, they must be CHRISTIAN and SAVED too.
Back to the bible:
“And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world.” — Apostle John, the one who leaned on Christ’s breast & probably heard the very heartbeat of God Himself. (1 John 4:14)
How can I miss apostle Paul?
“For to this end we both labor and suffer reproach, because we have set our trust in the living God, Who is the Savior of all men, especially of those who believe.” — Saul of Tarsus, later became known as Apostle Paul. (1 Timothy 4:10)
Our final quote 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”:
“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)
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)
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 heaven), 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)
How does all these together PROVE Biblical TRUTH Irrefutably?
“There is no wisdom, nor understanding, Nor counsel, over-against Jehovah.” (Proverbs 21:30, YLT)
“for I will give you utterance and wisdom which none of your opponents will be able to resist or refute.” – Lord Jesus Christ (Luke 21:15, NASB)
Most Blessed be the Savior of the World, God Who became Flesh in Lord Jesus Christ!