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Discussion Forum : Articles and Sermons : The Mental and Emotional Anguish of Hell by John Boruff

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TMK
Member



Joined: 2012/2/8
Posts: 5201
NC, USA

 Re:

My point was that the passage about the smoke ascending forever and ever is a direct reference to the same type of language in Isaiah.

I am not saying that apocalyptic language does not mean anything. The question is: what does it mean? We like to pick and choose which passages are literal and which passages are symbolic. The problem is that a plain reading of the book of Revelation reveals that it is practically ALL symbolic. What do the symbols mean?

In regard to "eternal" life, let me ask you this-- do you have "eternal life" now? Jesus says you do.

The greek word translated "eternal" does not necessarily mean "forever and ever" although it can. But it doesn't have to and often does not (even in the Bible. Check it out for yourself.

Let me ask you this, Bear. Would you be bummed out if you were to someday learn that hell is not a place of eternal torture and anguish, or would you be overjoyed?

Is it not possible that God will actually be the cosmic victor when all is said and done, or do you really believe that He will be the cosmic loser? because I have to tell you that if 99% of all the souls that have ever lived will be tortured in hell forever and ever, the the devil has won. How else would you define victory, and what more could the devil ask for?


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Todd

 2014/3/1 17:06Profile









 Re: TMK

Brother you are imposing your own finite understanding on an infinite God. His ways are not our ways and his thoughts are not our thoughts.

God`s sense of justice in dealing with and punishing sin is not to us to comprehend. Our ideas of what is right and fair do not apply to God.

One thing we can be sure of there is a way sinners can avoid an eternal hell. That is by turning to the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross. God has provided a way of salvation through His Son. All one needs to do is have faith in Jesus.

Rather than questioning God's character over the eternal punishment of sinners in hell. We should be praising Him for a wondrous salvation wraught at Calvary that'saves us from eternal hell.

The question is not how can a God of love send sinners to an eternal hell. But rather how can a just God give up his dear Son to save the likes of you and me.

Brother we should not be calling into question God over an eternal hell. But rather we should be praising Him from our hearts that He has saved us from hel and eternal punishment.

My thoughts.

Blaine



 2014/3/1 18:21









 Re:

TMK something else. The Scriptures speak plainly particularly in the verse in Matthew 25. There is no doubt that Jesus is making a distinction between eternal life and eternal punishment. The implication being those destinations are forever and ever.

Blaine

 2014/3/1 18:30
TMK
Member



Joined: 2012/2/8
Posts: 5201
NC, USA

 Re:

In regard to Mt. 25:

1) the "sheep and goats" passage is referring to NATIONS not individuals (see v 32). Where else in the bible does it talk about nations being cast into the Lake of Fire?

2) Even if it IS talking about individuals, what is the basis for judging? Certainly not faith in Jesus, but rather good works. And we know that can't be right.


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Todd

 2014/3/2 8:07Profile
lylewise
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Joined: 2009/2/20
Posts: 494
Celina, Texas

 Re:

Don't we all naturally shun such extreme views of eternal punishment? We have yet, in our lifetimes, begun to scratch the surface of what God's grace is. Why would scratching the surface of his wrath be any different? I believe the opening description of hell is greatly insufficient, but what should we expect when both words and understanding fail us and we are given such a minuscule span to meditate on something needing an eternity of education? Who has such a scale that could measure the preciousness of His blood?

 2014/3/2 9:27Profile
lylewise
Member



Joined: 2009/2/20
Posts: 494
Celina, Texas

 Re:

THE WRATH OF GOD
A.W. Pink



It is sad to find so many professing Christians who appear to regard the wrath of God as something for which they need to make an apology, or at least they wish there were no such thing. While some would not go so far as to openly admit that they consider it a blemish on the Divine character, yet they are far from regarding it with delight, they like not to think about it, and they rarely hear it mentioned without a secret resentment rising up in their hearts against it. Even with those who are more sober in their judgment, not a few seem to imagine that there is a severity about the Divine wrath which is too terrifying to form a theme for profitable contemplation. Others harbor the delusion that God’s wrath is not consistent with His goodness, and so seek to banish it from their thoughts.

Yes, many there are who turn away from a vision of God’s wrath as though they were called to look upon some blotch in the Divine character, or some blot upon the Divine government. But what saith the Scriptures? As we turn to them we find that God has made no attempt to conceal the fact of His wrath. He is not ashamed to make it known that vengeance and fury belong unto Him. His own challenge is, "See now that I, even I, am He, and there is no god with Me: I kill, and I make alive; I wound, and I heal; neither is there any that can deliver out of My hand. For I lift up My hand to heaven, and say, I live forever, If I whet My glittering sword, and Mine hand take hold on judgment; I will render vengeance to Mine enemies, and will reward them that hate Me" (Deut. 32:39-41). A study of the concordance will show that there are more references in Scripture to the anger, fury, and wrath of God, than there are to His love and tenderness. Because God is holy, He hates all sin; And because He hates all sin, His anger burns against the sinner: Psalm 7:11.

Now the wrath of God is as much a Divine perfection as is His faithfulness, power, or mercy. It must be so, for there is no blemish whatever, not the slightest defect in the character of God; yet there would be if "wrath" were absent from Him! Indifference to sin is a moral blemish, and he who hates it not is a moral leper. How could He who is the Sum of all excellency look with equal satisfaction upon virtue and vice, wisdom and folly? How could He who is infinitely holy disregard sin and refuse to manifest His "severity" (Rom. 9:12) toward it? How could He who delights only in that which is pure and lovely, loathe and hate not that which is impure and vile? The very nature of God makes Hell as real a necessity, as imperatively and eternally requisite as Heaven is. Not only is there no imperfection in God, but there is no perfection in Him that is less perfect than another.

The wrath of God is His eternal detestation of all unrighteousness. It is the displeasure and indignation of Divine equity against evil. It is the holiness of God stirred into activity against sin. It is the moving cause of that just sentence which He passes upon evil-doers. God is angry against sin because it is a rebelling against His authority, a wrong done to His inviolable sovereignty. Insurrectionists against God’s government shall be made to know that God is the Lord. They shall be made to feel how great that Majesty is which they despise, and how dreadful is that threatened wrath which they so little regarded. Not that God’s anger is a malignant and malicious retaliation, inflicting injury for the sake of it, or in return for injury received. No; while God will vindicate His dominion as the Governor of the universe, He will not be vindictive.

That Divine wrath is one of the perfections of God is not only evident from the considerations presented above, but is also clearly established by the express declarations of His own Word. "For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven" (Rom. 1:18). Robert Haldane comments on this verse as follows:

It was revealed when the sentence of death was first pronounced, the earth cursed, and man driven out of the earthly paradise; and afterwards by such examples of punishment as those of the Deluge and the destruction of the Cities of the Plain by fire from heaven; but especially by the reign of death throughout the world. It was proclaimed in the curse of the law on every transgression, and was intimated in the institution of sacrifice. In the 8th of Romans, the apostle calls the attention of believers to the fact that the whole creation has become subject to vanity, and groaneth and travaileth together in pain. The same creation which declares that there is a God, and publishes His glory, also proclaims that He is the Enemy of sin and the Avenger of the crimes of men . . . But above all, the wrath of God was revealed from heaven when the Son of God came down to manifest the Divine character, and when that wrath was displayed in His sufferings and death, in a manner more awful than by all the tokens God had before given of His displeasure against sin. Besides this, the future and eternal punishment of the wicked is now declared in terms more solemn and explicit than formerly. Under the new dispensation there are two revelations given from heaven, one of wrath, the other of grace.

Again; that the wrath of God is a Divine perfection is plainly demonstrated by what we read of in Psalm 95:11, "Unto whom I sware in My wrath." There are two occasions of God "swearing": in making promises (Gen. 22:16), and in denouncing threatening (Deut. 1:34). In the former, He swares in mercy to His children; in the latter, He swares to terrify the wicked. An oath is for solemn confirmation: Hebrews 6:16. In Genesis 22:16 God said, "By Myself have I sworn." In Psalm 89:35 He declares, "Once have I sworn by My holiness." While in Psalm 95:11 He affirmed, "I swear in My wrath." Thus the great Jehovah Himself appeals to His "wrath" as a perfection equal to His "holiness": He swares by the one as much as by the other! Again; as in Christ "dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily" (Col. 2:9), and as all the Divine perfections are illustriously displayed by Him (John 1:18), therefore do we read of "the wrath of the Lamb" (Rev. 6:16).

The wrath of God is a perfection of the Divine character upon which we need to frequently meditate. First, that our hearts may be duly impressed by God’s detestation of sin. We are ever prone to regard sin lightly, to gloss over its hideousness, to make excuses for it. But the more we study and ponder God’s abhorrence of sin and His frightful vengeance upon it, the more likely are we to realize its heinousness. Second, to beget a true fear in our souls for God: "Let us have grace whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear: for our God is a consuming fire" (Heb. 12:28,29). We cannot serve Him "acceptably" unless there is due "reverence" for His awful Majesty and "godly fear" of His righteous anger, and these are best promoted by frequently calling to mind that "our God is a consuming fire." Third, to draw out our souls in fervent praise for having delivered us from "the wrath to come" (1 Thess. 1:10).

Our readiness or our reluctancy to meditate upon the wrath of God becomes a sure test of how our hearts’ really stand affected toward Him. If we do not truly rejoice in God, for what He is in Himself, and that because of all the perfections which are eternally resident in Him, then how dwelleth the love of God in us? Each of us needs to be most prayerfully on his guard against devising an image of God in our thoughts which is patterned after our own evil inclinations. Of old the Lord complained, "Thou thoughtest that I was altogether as thyself" (Ps. 50:21), If we rejoice not "at the remembrance of His holiness" (Ps. 97:12), if we rejoice not to know that in a soon coming Day God will make a most glorious display of His wrath, by taking vengeance on all who now oppose Him, it is proof positive that our hearts are not in subjection to Him, that we are yet in our sins, on the way to the everlasting burnings.

"Rejoice, O ye nations (Gentiles) His people, for He will avenge the blood of His servants, and will render vengeance to His adversaries" (Deut. 32:43). And again we read, "I heard a great voice of much people in heaven, saying Alleluia; Salvation, and glory, and honour, and power, unto the Lord our God; For true and righteous are His judgments: for He hath judged the great whore, which did corrupt the earth with her fornication, and hath avenged the blood of His servants at her hand. And again they said Alleluia." (Rev. 19:13). Great will be the rejoicing of the saints in that day when the Lord shall vindicate His majesty, exercise His awful dominion, magnify His justice, and overthrow the proud rebels who have dared to defy Him.

"If thou Lord, shouldest mark (impute) iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand?" (Ps. 130:3). Well may each of us ask this question, for it is written, "the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment" (Ps. 1:5). How sorely was Christ’s soul exercised with thoughts of God’s marking the iniquities of His people when they were upon Him! He was "amazed and very heavy" (Mark 14:33). His awful agony, His bloody sweat, His strong cries and supplications (Heb. 5:7), His reiterated prayers ("If it be possible, let this cup pass from Me"), His last dreadful cry, ("My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?") all manifest what fearful apprehensions He had of what it was for God to "mark iniquities." Well may poor sinners cry out, "Lord who shall stand" when the Son of God Himself so trembled beneath the weight of His wrath? If thou, my reader, hast not "fled for refuge" to Christ, the only Saviour, "how wilt thou do in the swelling of the Jordan?" (Jer. 12:5)?

When I consider how the goodness of God is abused by the greatest part of mankind, I cannot but be of his mind that said, The greatest miracle in the world is God’s patience and bounty to an ungrateful world. If a prince hath an enemy got into one of his towns, he doth not send them in provision, but lays close siege to the place, and doth what he can to starve them. But the great God, that could wink all His enemies into destruction, bears with them, and is at daily cost to maintain them. Well may He command us to bless them that curse us, who Himself does good to the evil and unthankful. But think not, sinners, that you shall escape thus; God’s mill goes slow, but grinds small; the more admirable His patience and bounty now is, the more dreadful and unsupportable will that fury be which ariseth out of His abused goodness. Nothing smoother than the sea, yet when stirred into a tempest, nothing rageth more. Nothing so sweet as the patience and goodness of God, and nothing so terrible as His wrath when it takes fire. (Wm Gurnall, 1660).

Then flee, my reader, flee to Christ; "flee from the wrath to come" (Matt. 3:7) ere it be too late. Do not, we earnestly beseech you, suppose that this message is intended for somebody else. It is to you! Do not be contented by thinking you have already fled to Christ. Make certain! Beg the Lord to search your heart and show you yourself.


 2014/3/2 9:55Profile









 Re: TMK

Regarding Mat. 25:32 nations could easily be translated as peoples of those nations. I do not believe that Jesus is referring to the geo political boundaries of earthly nations in the final judgment. We know that in the end time all nations will be judged and found wanting. I do not believe there will be such a thing as a sheep nation and a goat nation.

But to understand that Jesus is separating people as sheep and goats within those nations makes more sense and keeps in the context of scripture. Particularly when one looks at John 10 where Jesus is described as a good shepherd. And His followers are likened as sheep.

The fact that Jesus is judging on the basis of works in Matthew 25 does not take away from faith. For we are told in the latter half of James chapter 2 that faith without works is dead. As the old writers with say "it is faith that saves alone, but saving faith is never alone". Also Eph..2:10 says we are created in Christ Jesus to do good works which God prepared for us to walk in.

The fact remains there is an eternal destination where the sheep and the goats, individual people, who.are walking by faith in those good works. And for those people who fail to walk in those good works. For the goats there will be eternal punishment, being an eternal hell. For the Sheep there will be eternal life, being an eternal heaven.

For sure one has eternal life now knowing Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior by faith. But the latter half of John 3 states that the one who does not know Jesus has the wrath of God abiding on him.

TMK I noticed in your posts the idea of an eternal hell is aborant to you and some others in this forum. Indeed one poster says he cannot worship such a God who would send people to an eternal hell for rejecting God's Son Jesus Christ.

There lies the heart of the matter. If hell were not an eternal reality, then I ask you and others in this forum, , why the cross? If the justice of God did not require payment for one`s sins, then why did God sacrifices His Son ? Why did God provide a way for us to escape the horrors of an eternal hell by believing in the finished work of His Son?

If hell is not eternal but only some type of time out box, then there is no need to preach the gospel. Then there is no need to call people to repentance and faith in Jesus Christ. Why bother? After all hell is only temporary. I find such a view not taught anywhere in the New Testament.

Those who hold to a temporary hell will not find scripture support for such a view. And such a view undermines the Person and Work of Jesus Christ.

Blaine Scogin

 2014/3/2 11:39
rainydaygirl
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Joined: 2008/10/27
Posts: 742


 Re:

Those who hold to a temporary hell will not find scripture support for such a view. And such a view undermines the Person and Work of Jesus Christ.

Blaine Scogin

---

i can say amen to that:)

 2014/3/2 12:28Profile
TMK
Member



Joined: 2012/2/8
Posts: 5201
NC, USA

 Re:

Those who hold to the idea of Universal Reconciliation absolutely believe that it was necessary for Christ to die on the cross, because there is no other name under heaven by which men must be saved.

You obviously have a misunderstanding of what those who hold to the UR view actually believe. I have said it about 1000 times on this forum but it never seems to sink in. They DO believe in a real hell with real suffering. They do not believe that God just automatically saves everybody and that they go directly to heaven when they die. No, no, no.

Evangelical proponents of UR believe that hell is real and hell is a place of torment. Those persons who do not repent and bow the knee to Jesus in their lifetime will go there. But they believe that God's punishments are always REMEDIAL. In other words, there is a point to punishment in hell, and it is RESTORATION- not infinite torture.

It might take certain persons millions of years in hell before they finally repent. Those millions of years, my friend, will be no picnic.

I, for one, do not wish to be in hell for even 5 minutes. To suggest that somehow "justice is not done" if God sees fit to save someone after many years in hell is ridiculous.

If a person believes that hell is a place of conscious eternal torment, they must accept the following:

God created mankind knowing they would sin. How do we know? Because Jesus is the Lamb who was slain from the foundation of the world. So even before God ever created us he knew we were going to rebel and be sinners. But this upset Him so much that he created a torturous place called hell in which to consign these rebels. But, not all was lost because he did make provision through his Son- so that any person who believes in his Son would be saved. The only problem with this is that the great great majority of the people who have ever lived will not have a realistic opportunity to accept Christ. Think of the all the persons born into Hindu, or Buddhist, or Muslim families. Now you can say "but they still have enough light to accept Christ so they are without excuse." Are you sure about that? I was born in a Christian home, and as a result I have never given any serious consideration to any other religion. Why would I expect a person born into another religion give serious consideration to Christianity?

My point is that if you believe hell is a place of never-ending torment then you must believe that God created this place and that he knew it would some day hold perhaps 99% of his creation. This would be ok, except that God KNEW they would end up there when He created them. So to summarize, God created hell in order to infinitely torture 99% of his creation. Really? Is that what is going on here?

To say this is "good" requires a different definition of that word and should give any reasonable person pause. By the way, God created us with brains. We are not required to "check them at the door" when considering such matters.


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Todd

 2014/3/2 13:29Profile
noone
Member



Joined: 2008/3/17
Posts: 75
United States

 Re:

I believe in hell and I believe it is a horrible place, but I am undecided on whether it is for all eternity or for a certain time then ultimate death. I have believed for many, many years that it is for eternity. But my question to the ones who believe it is for eternity what would your definition of Perish and Destroy be?


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Tina

 2014/3/2 20:01Profile





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