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 eternal torment
  

ETERNAL TORMENT IN SCRIPTURE?

 

The modern Christian teaching of eternal torment for all who are not "saved" is not found in Scripture and is in fact, contrary to what is written. The false doctrine of Eternal Torment  teaches that all mankind has eternal life (Immortality) and therefore all will live forever - some in the lake of fire and some in heaven. The "immortality of the soul" for all mankind is not taught in the Bible! It was handed down from the Greek philosophers and adopted by the Roman Catholic Church.  For example:

 

Plato (ca. 428-348 B.C) reasoned that the soul, being eternal, must have had a pre-existence in the ideal world where it learned about the eternal Ideals" (William S. Sahakian, History of Philosophy, 1968, p. 56).

 

The same immortality of the soul was taught by Augustine- Doctor of the Roman Catholic Church. For Augustine (354-430 A.D.) death meant the destruction of the body, but the conscious soul would continue to live in either a blissful state with God or an agonizing state of separation from God. In The City of God he wrote that the soul "is therefore called immortal, because in a sense, it does not cease to live and to feel; while the body is called mortal because it can be forsaken of all life, and cannot by itself live at all. " ( Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol. 2, 1995, p. 245.)"

 

Contrary to the Roman Catholic doctrine called "Immortality of the soul" and later adopted by modern Christianity, Jesus said:

 

John 10:28—"and I give eternal life to them, [ the sheep] and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand."

 

Q. How could Jesus give them what they already had? It is obvious that if they already had eternal life (Immortality of the soul) Jesus would not need to give it to his sheep.

 

That verse alone should be sufficient to destroy the false doctrine that all men have eternal life. The assumption that the soul has eternal life from birth is directly contrary to many verses which demand that assumption cannot be true. For example:

 

Matt 19:16—"And someone came to Him and said, 'Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may obtain eternal life?'"

Matt 19:29-30—"And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or farms for My name's sake, will receive many times as much, and will inherit eternal life."

John 3:16—"For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life."

John 3:36—"He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him."

John 5:24—"Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life."

John 6:40—"For this is the will of My Father, that everyone who beholds the Son and believes in Him will have eternal life, and I Myself will raise him up on the last day."

John 6:47—"Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes has eternal life."

John 6:54—"He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day."

John 10:28—"and I give eternal life to them, [ the sheep] and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand."

Rom 5:21—"so that, as sin reigned in death, even so grace would reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord."

Gal 6:8—"For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life."

1 John 3:15—"Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer; and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him."

1 John 5:11—"And the testimony is this, that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son."

1Jn 5:12 He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life

 

Each of those verses demand that eternal life is something not given to all. Rather, it is given to specific individuals under certain circumstances. If even one verse proves that anyone does not have eternal life from birth then the doctrine of "immortality of the soul" is wrong. If wrong, then the doctrine of Eternal Torment for all who do not believe and repent must also be wrong because it is predicated on the assumption that all people live forever.

 

For example - If no murderer has eternal life abiding in him how could he be punished for eternity - He does not have eternal life!

 

Jesus stated plainly that the "chaff" will BURN UP - not burn forever:

 

Mat 3:12 Whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.

 

"burn up" = "consume wholly. Greek G2618 katakaiō to burn down (to the ground), that is, consume wholly: - burn (up, utterly).

Who has immortality?...

 

Paul wrote:

1Co 15:53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal MUST PUT ON *immortality*.

1Co 15:54 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.

 

1 Tim 6:15-16—"He who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone possesses immortality..."

 

The Greek word translated "immortality" is "G110 deathlessness: - immortality." Deathlessness - we shall never die

However, in the entire Bible, there is not a single verse that records anything to the effect that "Everyone has eternal life; it's only a matter of where each will spend it." Yet this is what most of the church today believes.


Contrary, to popular opinion, the Bible never says that all people are born with an immortal soul. Rather. it states that only God has immortality, and He blesses whom He chooses with the gift of eternal life.

 

The Scriptures DO teach that some will suffer eternal torment in the lake of fire. For example:

 

1. The devil, the beast and the false prophet will suffer eternal torment:|

Rev 20:10 And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.

 

2. Those who worship the beast and receive his mark will suffer eternal torment:

Rev 14:9 And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand,

Rev 14:10 The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:

Rev 14:11 And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.

 

The Scriptures DO teach that others will also be cast into the lake of fire but DO NOT teach that they will be tormented forever and ever:

 

Rev 20:14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.

Rev 20:15 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.

Rev 21:8 But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.

 

Cast into the lake of fire is the second death - NOT eternal life. Death! - not life forever.

 

The Scriptures DO teach that some will burn up - be consumed -and not burn forever.

 

Mat 3:12 Whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.

 

"burn up" = "consume wholly. Greek G2618 katakaiō to burn down (to the ground), that is, consume wholly: - burn (up, utterly).

Righteous Judgement?

 

The Scriptures specifically state that those who are cast into the lake of fire are to receive "righteous judgement" and be judged "according to their deeds".

 

Rom 2:5 But after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God;

Rom 2:6 Who will render to every man according to his deeds:

Rev 20:12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

 

On the other hand, Modern Christianity teaches that all who are not "saved" will be judged and given the exact same punishment as Satan - eternal torment!

 

If a fifteen year old boy who committed few sins is given the same sentence as Satan how could that be "righteous judgment according to his deeds"? The answer is obvious. Jesus taught us the principle of descending levels of punishment when he said:

 

Luk 12:46 The lord of that servant will come in a day when he looketh not for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in sunder, and will appoint him his portion with the unbelievers.

Luk 12:47 And that servant, which knew his lord's will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes.

Luk 12:48 But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes.

Punishment according to ones deeds is righteous judgment. If all in this parable by Jesus were punished the same it would not be righteous judgment.

 

Annihilation?

Those who are cast into the lake of fire are judged with "righteous judgment" according to their knowledge and their deeds, punished and then consumed by the fire - they "burn up" as Jesus stated. Early church fathers agreed with Jesus and taught annihilation of the wicked. (Conditional Immortality)


"Conditional Immortality is a view that was held by many of the earliest church fathers including Ignatius (A.D. 35-110), Polycarp (the disciple of John) (A.D. 70-155), Justin Martyr (A.D. 100-165), Irenaeus (A.D. 130-202) "

 

Today, the doctrine of eternal torment for all who are not “saved” is an open door to false doctrines such as baptismal salvation and once saved always saved. The imaginations of the mind about loved ones burning and screaming in torment a million years from now force people through that door and cause them to slam it shut behind them – refusing to look at the Scriptures. When people imagine their children, their parents or even themselves writhing in agony forever after being cast into the lake of fire they need a quick fix. Satan has provided just the remedy they are seeking. All one has to do is believe and be baptized and they are saved forever from ever having to worry about “everlasting torment”. Then like the proverbial ostrich they bury their heads in John 3:16 and refuse to look at the rest of the Scriptures on the subject of salvation.

 

When we stop to think about it how could a God of love create people whose only destiny is to join the billions who have never even heard of Jesus in a vast lake of charred, screaming souls burning forever. Justice and mercy demand an end to their suffering relative to the light they had and degree of sin they committed.

 

The Roman Catholic church has long trumpeted the doctrine of eternal torment to create fear in their people. Through this fear they are able to manipulate and control the lay people who have been taught that the only deliverance from eternal torment is through the church and its sacraments. To be excommunicated is to be condemned to unimaginable suffering for eternity. The unspeakable tortures and burning at the stake practiced by the Roman Inquisition and other so called Christians could easily be justified by saying – “ If God is going to burn heretics in hell for all eternity, why shouldn’t the church burn them to death now?” Eternal torment for all who are not "saved" is truly a doctrine of demons.

 

Modern Christianity uses the same deception to create a psychological need for the easy believeism doctrines such as Once Saved Always Saved. Fear of eternal torment may cause a person to say they believe but cannot bring one to true repentance. If they have already been “saved from destruction” there is no necessity to cease from sin in order to avoid being cast into the lake of fire.

 

Harold Kupp

 


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