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timmopussycat #28322 Mon Oct 10, 2005 6:54 AM
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I have sent you (and others) a PM on Stott's position that is not for publication on the forum/web.

J_Edwards #28323 Mon Oct 10, 2005 7:01 AM
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Stott is well known in the UK, along with Dick Lucas, as a life-long confirmed bachelor. Both men were influenced by Bash Camps, christian camps for public (ie private) school boys run by EH Nash. Many have entered the Anglican ministry as a result of these. Nash advocated celibacy for his charges if they became ministers. Jim Packer was one camper who didn't take that advice!

The rumour that Stott is a divorcee is scurrilous gossip unworthy of Christians.

Yours in Christ,

James.

William #28324 Tue Oct 11, 2005 11:14 AM
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A few questions:
1. Did you ever wonder how the rich man from his location in Hades could look over and see Lazarus in “Abraham’s bosom”?
2. And what kind of comfort would anyone find in “Abraham’s bosom” if they could simply look far away and see others suffering in flames?
3. Then do you really think those in hell, or Hades, would be talking to “Father Abraham”?
4. And why do you think the story has the rich man addressing Abraham instead of God?
5. And would a “wicked” man even be concerned about his brothers?
I am not suggesting that I do not believe in eternal punishment, but is this a good passage to support that view? I do believe that the whole chp. is speaking to the Jewish leadership who were lovers of money.
Geomic

#28325 Tue Oct 11, 2005 12:14 PM
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Is it the punishing that’s everlasting or the punishment?
Geomic

CovenantInBlood #28326 Tue Oct 11, 2005 12:18 PM
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Possibly, separation from God and His kingdom forever.
Geomic

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Could it be said to be punishment if the person being punished does not exist?

#28328 Tue Oct 11, 2005 1:49 PM
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“Could it be said to be punishment if the person being punished does not exist?”

One line of thinking is that there is a period of actual punishment, depending on the individuals severity of sin, that is limited (some shorter, some longer) in time, then annihilation for eternity. Kind of like Sodom and Gomorrah, where the inhabitants undoubtedly experience pain for a limited duration, then annihilated.
Geomic

geomic1 #28329 Tue Oct 11, 2005 3:49 PM
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geomic1 said:
Possibly, separation from God and His kingdom forever.
Geomic

And do you think that conscious torment is a useful symbol if, in fact, eternal separation from God and His kingdom will involve annihilation?


Kyle

I tell you, this man went down to his house justified.
CovenantInBlood #28330 Tue Oct 11, 2005 4:49 PM
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"And do you think that conscious torment is a useful symbol if, in fact, eternal separation from God and His kingdom will involve annihilation?"

Kyle,
I have chosen to take the less then traditional side in regards to “conscious eternal punishment”, only to generate responses here on the forum. I personally am not sure where I stand. I was once, one who didn’t believe there was validity in any of the other views of hell. A guy name Fudge, wrote a book on hell, which caught my interest, because he did what seem to be a quite orthodox approach to what Scripture had to say about the subject and the O.T. and N.T. language for grave, hell, hades and etc. Since he wrote his book, another book came out called “Two Views of Hell”, where he and a reform scholar critique each others view. Thus, I presented this post.
In regards to your question, Fudge and others believe that there will be conscious punishment for a duration then annihilation, depending on the individual’s severity of sin in their life. “The Rich man”, would be experiencing his limited conscious punishment in 16:24. Remember also, that this parable or literal story, has much information that is difficult to understand (see my questions in earlier post),to become to dogmatic on one's view of conscious eternal punishment, at least from this passage.
Geomic

geomic1 #28331 Tue Oct 11, 2005 6:21 PM
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geomic1,

Do you think there will be any sin in Hell? If there continues to be sin then there will continue to be "eternal" punishment, for if the sin never stops it would perpetuate further punishment. If there is no more sin "in Hell" please tell us how "biblically" it is shown to cease for the reprobates? How "biblically" are reprobates glorified to a state of sinlessness? <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/shrug.gif" alt="" />


Reformed and Always Reforming,
geomic1 #28332 Tue Oct 11, 2005 6:24 PM
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That’s a lot of question’s for a novice like me so I’ll do my best. First not everything in the passage can be explained literally.

Quote
geomic1 said:
A few questions:
1. Did you ever wonder how the rich man from his location in Hades could look over and see Lazarus in “Abraham’s bosom”?

My Bible says “in hell” not Hades and that there is a “great gulf fixed” which can not be passed and apparently he could see thru the smoke.

Quote
2. And what kind of comfort would anyone find in “Abraham’s bosom” if they could simply look far away and see others suffering in flames?

Comfort is in Abraham's bosom for Lazarus in type his bosom is either God or the heavenly's and though the righteous shall see the misery of the wicked and the wicked shall see the righteous God will be being glorified.

Quote
3. Then do you really think those in hell, or Hades, would be talking to “Father Abraham”?
Jews used to call Abraham their father or the rich man could be referring to mercy (covenant) promised to Abraham.

Quote
4. And why do you think the story has the rich man addressing Abraham instead of God?
Abraham, well this could be figurative and could be interpreted with Mathew 22:32 I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living

Quote
5. And would a “wicked” man even be concerned about his brothers? I am not suggesting that I do not believe in eternal punishment, but is this a good passage to support that view? I do believe that the whole chp. is speaking to the Jewish leadership who were lovers of money

Would the rich man be concerned about his brethren, well he was in torment so I believe a man could say just about anything.
Thanks Bill's <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/my2cents.gif" alt="" />

Last edited by William; Tue Oct 11, 2005 6:25 PM.
geomic1 #28333 Tue Oct 11, 2005 6:41 PM
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geomic1 said:

I have chosen to take the less then traditional side in regards to “conscious eternal punishment”, only to generate responses here on the forum. I personally am not sure where I stand.

I've noticed a pattern in your posts. First you stir the pot and then you sit on the fence while others scramble to debate the topic. [Linked Image]


If you are interested in reading a discussion or two we've previously had on this topic you might find a convincing argument for eternal punishment rather than annihilation.

Views of Hell

What and Where is Hell?

Hopefully this study will help get you off the fence.


Wes


When I survey the wondrous cross on which the Prince of Glory died, my richest gain I count but loss and pour contempt on all my pride. - Isaac Watts
Wes #28334 Tue Oct 11, 2005 9:53 PM
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Wes,
Actually, I learn a lot from the responses and you must admit, "stirring the pot", does make things interesting. The topics I have brought up, are areas I have been challenge in of late.I did read through those topics you mentioned a week or so ago. I have found that we seldom go out of our comfort zones, in respect to what differs from our already preconceived notions. Thankfully, God intervenes, or none of us would know Him, much less grow in the knowledge of the particulars, that are not of a salvation issue.
Geomic

William #28335 Tue Oct 11, 2005 11:10 PM
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"My Bible says “in hell” not Hades and that there is a “great gulf fixed” which can not be passed and apparently he could see thru the smoke."

Actually, Bill, from what I read, in the New Testament, the words used for the place of the unbeliever is “Gehenna” and “Hades”(the Greek word for Hades is often translated as “grave”, 11 times in KJV). The KJV, translates the word to “Hell” in this account, where the NAS, doesn’t translate the word to mean “Hell” at any place in the N.T.. One other word is used in 2 Peter 2:4, for the place of the fallen angels which is “tartaroo” and it occurs only once. If this is a parable, it seems reasonable to believe that the emphasis is that the “Rich man” (Pharisee) is not where he thought he would be while alive physically and though he claim to be descendent of Abraham (and thus a blessed
Seed of Abraham) in death he found that Lazarus (Gentile) was the one who was truly a spiritual descendent of Abraham (Rom.2:28-29 and 9:7-8). Thus “the gulf” is metaphorically presented as separation from God’s kingdom, and the small particulars like, communication and vision are not literal but for emphasis of the story.

"Comfort is in Abraham's bosom for Lazarus in type his bosom is either God or the heavenly's and though the righteous shall see the misery of the wicked and the wicked shall see the righteous God will be being glorified."

In “type” is a good estimation of Lazarus, Abraham and the Rich man, in regards to God’s Kingdom and the kingdom of the world. Much of the Old Testament figures were a “type” of the Christ to come ( Luke 24:27,Col.. 2:17).


"Abraham, well this could be figurative and could be interpreted with Mathew 22:32 I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living"

It could be figurative, but can one take a literal story and say that the Rich man and Lazarus are real figures and Abraham is only figurative?

Geomic

J_Edwards #28336 Wed Oct 12, 2005 12:14 AM
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J. Edwards,
I am not real sure where you are going with these questions, but I will try to answer them. If “Hell” is a place of eternal conscious punishment, then yes, there will be sin in Hell. If “Hell” is of a limited duration of conscious punishment and then annihilation, no there will not be sin, because the sinner no longer exist physically or spiritually (Mt. 10:28).
It wouldn’t be reprobates are glorified to a state of sinlessness, but that they no longer exist to commit sin. Thus the New World and New Heaven, are without a place of eternal punishment of the wicked in some darken recess of the universe if the “Annihilation” people are correct.
I am going to paste just a few Biblical references used by Samuele Bacchiocchi, if you want to read in whole, do a search of “HELL: ETERNAL TORMENT OR ANNIHILATION?”
Samuele Bacchiocchi, Ph. D., Andrews University


The Language of Destruction in the Old Testament. The most compelling reason for believing in the annihilation of the lost at the final judgment is the rich vocabulary and imagery of "destruction" often used in the Old and New Testaments to describe the fate of the wicked. The writers of the Old Testament seem to have exhausted the resources of the Hebrew language at their command to affirm the complete destruction of impenitent sinners.
According to Basil Atkinson 28 Hebrew nouns and 23 verbs are generally translated"destruction" or "to destroy" in our English Bible. Approximately half of these words are used to describe the final destruction of the wicked.79 A detailed listing of all the occurrences would take us beyond the limited scope of this chapter, beside proving to be repetitious to most readers. Interested readers can find an extensive analysis of such texts in the studies by Basil Atkinson and Edward Fudge. Only a sampling of significant texts are considered here.
Several Psalms describe the final destruction of the wicked with dramatic imagery (Ps 1:3-6; 2:9-12; 11:1-7; 34:8-22; 58:6-10; 69:22-28; 145:17, 20). In Psalm 37, for example, we read that the wicked "will soon fade like grass" (v. 2),"they shall be cut off . . . and will be no more" (vv. 9-10), they will "perish . . . like smoke they vanish away" (v. 20),"transgressors shall be altogether destroyed" (v. 38). Psalm 1, loved and memorized by many, contrasts the way of the righteous with that of the wicked. Of the latter it says that "the wicked shall not stand in the judgment" (v. 5). They will be "like chaff which the wind drives away" (v. 4). "The way of the wicked will perish" (v. 6). Again, in Psalm 145, David affirms: "The Lord preserves all who love him; but all the wicked he will destroy" (v. 20). This sampling of references, on the final destruction of the wicked is in complete harmony with the teaching of the rest of Scripture.
The Destruction of the Day of the Lord. The prophets frequently announce the ultimate destruction of the wicked in conjunction with the eschatological Day of the Lord. In his opening chapter, Isaiah proclaims that "rebels and sinners shall be destroyed together, and those who forsake the Lord shall be consumed" (Is 1:28). The picture here is one of total destruction, a picture that is further developed by the imagery of people burning like tinder with no one to quench the fire: "The strong shall become tow, and his work a spark, and both shall burn together, with none to quench them" (Is 1:31).
Zephaniah stacks up imagery upon imagery to portray the destructiveness of the day of the Lord."The great day of the Lord is near, near and hastening fast; . . . A day of wrath is that day, a day of distress and anguish, a day of ruin and devastation, a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and thick darkness, a day of trumpet blast and battle cry . . . In the fire of his jealous wrath, all the earth shall be consumed; for a full, yea, sudden end he will make of all the inhabitants of the earth" (Zeph 1:14, 15, 18). Here the prophet describes the destruction of the Day of the Lord in the context of the historical judgment against Jerusalem. By means of the prophetic perspective, the prophets often see the final punishment through the transparency of imminent historical events.
Hosea, like Zephaniah, uses a variety of images to describe the final end of sinners. "They shall be like the morning mist or like the dew that goes early away, like the chaff that swirls from the threshing floor or like smoke from a window" (Hos 13:3). The comparison of the fate of the wicked with the morning mist, the early dew, the chaff, and the smoke hardly suggests that sinners will suffer forever. On the contrary, such imagery suggests that sinners will finally disappear from God’s creation in the same way as the mist, dew, chaff, and smoke dissipate from the face of the earth.
On the last page of the Old Testament English Bible (not the Hebrew Bible), we find a most colorful description of the contrast between the final destiny of believers and unbeliervers. For the believers who fear the Lord, "the sun of righteousness shall rise, with healing in its wings" (Mal 4:2). But for unbelievers the Day of the Lord "comes, burning like an oven, when all the arrogant and all the evildoers will be stubble; the day that comes shall burn them up, says the Lord of host, so that it will leave them neither root nor branch" (Mal 4:1). The day of the final punishment of the lost will also be a day of vindication of God’s people, for they "shall tread down the wicked, for they will be ashes under the soles of [their] feet, on the day when I act, says the Lord of hosts" (Mal 4:3).
We need not interpret this prophecy literally, because we are dealing with representative symbols. But the message conveyed by these symbolic images is clear. While the righteous rejoice in God’s salvation, the wicked are consumed like"stubble," so that no "root or branch" is left. This is clearly a picture of total consumption by destroying fire, and not one of eternal torment. This is the Old Testament picture of the fate of the wicked, total and permanent destruction and not eternal torment.
Jesus and the Language of Destruction. The New Testament follows closely the Old Testament in describing the fate of the wicked with words and pictures denoting destruction. The most common Greek words are the verb apollumi (to destroy) and the noun apoleia (destruction). In addition, numerous graphic illustrations from both inanimate and animate life are used to portray the final destruction of the wicked.
Jesus also used several figures from inanimate life to portray the utter destruction of the wicked. He compared it to the following: weeds that are bound in bundles to be burned (Matt 13:30, 40), bad fish that is thrown away (Matt 13:48), harmful plants that are rooted up (Matt 15:13), fruitless trees that are cut down (Luke 13:7), and withered branches that are burned (John 15:6).
Jesus also used illustrations from human life to portray the doom of the wicked. He compared it to: unfaithful tenants who are destroyed (Luke 20:16), an evil servant who will be cut in pieces (Matt 24:51), the Galileans who perished (Luke 13:2-3), the eighteen persons crushed by Siloam’s tower (Luke 13:4-5), the antediluvians destroyed by the flood (Luke 17:27), the people of Sodom and Gomorrah destroyed by fire (Luke 17:29), and the rebellious servants who were slain at the return of their master (Luke 19:14, 27).
All of these figures denote capital punishment, either individually or collectively. They signify violent death, preceded by greater or lesser suffering. The illustrations employed by the Savior very graphically depict the ultimate destruction or dissolution of the wicked. Jesus asked: "When the lord therefore of the vineyard cometh, what will he do unto those husbandmen?" (Matt 21:40). And the people responded:"He will miserably destroy [apollumi] those wicked men" (Matt 21:41).
Jesus taught the final destruction of the wicked not only through illustrations, but also through explicit pronouncements. For example, He said: "Do not fear those who can kill the body but cannot kill the soul; rather fear him [God] who can destroy both soul and body in hell" (Matt 10:28). John Stott rightly remarks:"If to kill is to deprive the body of life, hell would seem to be the deprivation of both physical and spiritual life, that is, an extinction of being."80 In our study of this text in chapter 3 we noted that Christ did not consider hell a the place of eternal torment, but of permanent destruction of the whole being, soul and body.
Often Jesus contrasted eternal life with death or destruction. "I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish" (John 10:28). "Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few" (Matt 7:13-14). Here we have a simple contrast between life and death. There is no ground in Scripture for twisting the word "perish" or "destruction" to mean everlasting torment.
Earlier we noted that seven times Christ used the imagery of gehenna to describe the destruction of the wicked in hell. In reviewing Christ’s allusions to hell–gehenna, we found that none of them indicates that hell is a place of unending torment. What is eternal or unquenchable is not the punishment but the fire which, as the case of Sodom and Gomorra, causes the complete and permanent destruction of the wicked, a condition that lasts forever. The fire is unquencheable because it cannot be quenched until it has consumed all the combustible material.

Last edited by geomic1; Wed Oct 12, 2005 12:20 AM.
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