At the Last Judgment will those whose sins remain uncovered by the blood of Christ depart from His presence to suffer unending conscious torment? Recently, this doctrine of everlasting punishment has been questioned even by so thoroughly Reformed a theologian as Philip Edgcumbe Hughes and so staunchly evangelical a churchman as John R.W. Stott. In its place they propose putting the doctrine that the wicked will ultimately be annihilated—that Scripture’s remarks about the “second death” are properly interpreted as meaning that those not saved through Christ will ultimately cease to exist. They, along with a growing number of others, hold that this alternative to the traditional doctrine is scripturally defensible. As Stott puts it, while he holds his position tentatively, he believes that “the ultimate annihilation of the wicked should at least be accepted as a legitimate, biblically founded alternative to [the traditional evangelical belief in] eternal conscious torment.”

For this May's "Article of the Month", Dr. Mark Talbot defends the traditional view of eternal punishment against the ever-increasingly popular view called "Annihilationism". The fundamental issues which must be dealt with are 1) the severity of man's sin and 2) God's inexorable holiness. Both must be rightly understood, firmly embraced and defended for the matter transcends far beyond that of one's view of eternal punishment. Ultimately, the doctrine of salvation also rests upon one's views concerning God and sin.

This is good reading! And you can read it here: The Morality of Everlasting Punishment

For later reading you can find this article in two places: 1) The Article of the Month link from the home page, and 2) In Calvinism and the Reformed Faith in the articles listed under "Eschatology".

In His service and grace,

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simul iustus et peccator

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