Bible Discussion Thread

 
  • Jema - 7 months ago
    No one has ever yet given me a convincing explanation as to how , the wages of sin is death and yet , after we die we apparently continue to live ! Either in heaven or in hell . Death is the cessation of life , if it wasn't then it wouldn't be much of a punishment would it ? This is very plain and simple to me and beyond question . God Himself says : the wages of sin is death , the soul that sinneth it shall die , cease to exist . Now that's a punishment . The entire narrative of the Bible supports this , chapter after chapter after chapter . This cannot be denied and I really do believe , honestly , that adding anything more , creating an afterlife of either continuous torture at the hands of some sort of supernatural personification of evil , for eternity is a vile concept that God would not permit . Or and afterlife in heaven , which is where God Himself lives , when Jesus clearly tells us that the meek shall inherit the earth and even more details are given by Paul in 1st Thessalonians , is creating your own fable for your own comfort and somehow applying it to Christianity , I can't say applying it to scripture because there are no scriptures that support this fable , is definitely adding to the word of God . It's blatant ! And it truly astonishes me , that anyone who has read the Bible could ever believe either of these things . Search your heart , search the scripture ! It's just not supportable , it's a fable ! The only thing that could ever convince me that these things are true is The Bible and it's not in the Bible ! I am a follower , of the Bible . Not of anyone . Since I started reading this site not one of my beliefs , that I was very convinced of for thirty years before finding this site , have changed , not one . My understanding has been enhanced , by only one or two people of all the people that post on here but my beliefs are my own and the same as many others . I know because I've met them . The trinity is a catholic doctrine and another fable .
  • Adam - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Matthew 25:46 - And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.

    This seems pretty clear to me and hard to misunderstand it unless someone tries to twist it.

    If someone doesn't believe punishment is eternal then maybe someone should likewise question whether heaven is eternal, because this verse states them both as being everlasting / eternal.

    The Bible says the soul will die, the 2nd death, perish, etc. But how do you know that's not the eternal part, or how can you prove that God allows someone to actually suffer without a soul, etc. Basically people are just speculating, and its not going to get very far.

    But perhaps we can all agree that hell is bad and heaven is good? Hell is punishment and something to be avoided, and we need Jesus to avoid it. John 3:16 says this.

    Revelation 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.

    You can safely say some will be tormented day and night for ever and ever, because that's literally what this verse says.

    Mark 9:43-48 - unquenching fire- you can safely say that hell isn't immediately going away, either. It's likely in full operation.

    Revelation 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.

    Daniel 12:1-2 ever lasting life vs ever lasting contempt

    2 Thessalonians 1:8-9 everlasting destruction. This might debunk the human reasoning idea that death or being destroyed must only happen in a short timeframe. This says it can happen 'ever lasting' which seems long term or eternal. So, this verse now explains all the other verses where it makes sense.

    Revelation 14:11 smoke of their torment for ever and ever. That doesn't sound immediate or short term to me, but forever.

    God bless you.
  • GiGi - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Hello Adam, was just thinking of you and praying for you these last few days. It is good to have you back posting here.

    I agree completely with what you've presented. The Bible is clear that punishment for unbelievers, fallen angels, the devil is forever and ever, unending.
  • Adam - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Thank you GiGi. God bless you.
  • Jesse - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Jema or Shabbat Keeper,

    (Part 3):

    Matthew 25:30 says to cast the worthless servant into the outer darkness. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Where is this place and who goes there? How can someone who cease to exist weep or gnash their teeth?

    Daniel 12:2 says that many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. This is obviously speaking of two classes of people, believers and non-believers. If one (or both) cease to exist when they die, how can this be?

    In Ephesians Chapter 4, when Jesus descended into the lower regions of the earth, what was that for? Why would He go there? Who were these captives that He loosened?

    Luke 12:5 says, "But I will forewarn you whom ye shall fear: Fear him, which after he hath killed hath power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, Fear him." If a person just ceases to exist when they die, why would they have to fear being cast into Hell?

    I realize that these are a lot of questions, but what you are presenting here, I think would cause many believers to have questions. Again, if you choose to answer these questions, I do appreciate your time.
  • Jema - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Dear Jesse , have you read Ezekiel Ch 18 ? I'm guessing that you have :) . What does it mean to you ? In particular the last two verses . I reeeeally don't want to go back and forth on this because I feel that it would be a waste of both of our time and energy . I respect you and your beliefs . I just don't agree with all of them . I'm ok with that and hope that you are too .
  • Jema - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Dear Jesse , I think I have explained my beliefs on here before . They are very simple and based on my reading the Bible every day for thirty years . Death is the cessation of life , hell is the grave , cessation of life , that's why we don't want it , as Christians we know there is another option to death / hell / the grave . That option is to live with Christ in God's Kingdom forever . That's why we fear it , because we know there is a wonderful alternative . Simple as that . Jesus uses the word perish a lot , it means to be totally destroyed . He speaks about it as the end of us if we don't repent . To me , it really is a very simple , clear and consistent message throughout the entire Bible . I'm not trying to convince anyone else , only the Bible can do that , only the Bible could convince me otherwise . With respect and affection .
  • Jesse - In Reply - 7 months ago
    (Part 2):

    Jema, you asked me if I've read Ezekiel Chapter 18, and also what does it mean to me? I would be happy to answer your questions, but first I need to know that you are open for discussion, even if it is "back and forth." I am completely open for discussion, and I would never consider our discussion a waste of my time.

    I promise you that I will never be rude to you in any conversation. One thing I will say up front is that I may ask a lot of questions, but I'm confident that since you have studied the bible every day for 30 years, my questions shouldn't be very difficult at all for you to answer.

    Also, I do commend you on 30 years of bible study without missing a single day. I wish I could say the same. I do have a hunger for God's word and find that I can't stay away from it for very long, but I have missed some days of study over the years. I am 63 years old and have also been studying for many years. I have never told anyone here how many years I have been studying, and that's something I probably won't share, and I have my own reason for not disclosing that information.
  • Jema - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Hi Jesse , also , I have been reading this site for many more years than I have been posting and I have sadly noted that many debates turn aggressive . This is not something that I will tolerate from anyone . If someone is aggressive to me I just withdraw and I don't come back . I realise that in a typed message , aggression can be mistaken but I've seen it very blatant and also in its passive form on here and I won't engage with aggressive people . I was brought up with physical and mental aggression and I couldn't escape from it , now I can escape and so I do :) . You may consider me oversensitive :) you wouldn't be the first :) .
  • Jema - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Hi Jesse and thanks for your replies to me , I appreciate them . I don't really enjoy justifying my beliefs , especially when I know that the person I'm speaking to is as strong in their (different ) beliefs as I am in mine . Sadly I don't have a lot of time to spend on here and by the end of the day , which is when I usually look on here , I'm so tired I can barely keep my eyes open . That's why I don't read all posts , I'm a bit of a cherry picker :) . I am open to debate but don't much enjoy it , that's the best way I can put it . My Bible knowledge in 95 per cent self learned over 30 years and I'm definitely not the type who is easily influenced by others . I also have no desire to influence others in their beliefs , so you can see why I'm not overly keen on debate , it does not come naturally to me . I will and always do , read your posts to me and to others , so if you want to talk about this subject I will listen and if I have the time and energy I will respond . That's the most I can give you I'm afraid . Just because we don't believe exactly the same things doesn't mean that we can't enjoy and learn from each other , I know that from my own experience on here :) . Much love in Christ .
  • Jesse - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Jema,

    Thank you for being upfront with me. I do understand where you're coming from and I will respectfully move on from this discussion.

    Until I can find some place in the Bible that tells me that the soul will cease to exist and that hell is the grave, we will just have to remain in disagreement.

    Unless the Lord comes for us before we die, our bodies are going to end up in a grave somewhere. I can't bring myself to believe that you or I or anyone else who belongs to the Lord will end up in hell (if hell is the grave).

    I know I asked a lot of questions and I presented a lot scriptures to go with those questions. You mentioned that you don't have the time to read everything but I hope that if you ever do find the time to carefully read over those questions, perhaps you might see why I find it difficult to agree with you on this one.

    Again, thank you for your openness and for being the kind and caring person that you are. I do look forward to reading more of your posts. God bless!!!
  • Ronald Whittemore - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Hi Jesse,

    Part 1

    If I may add a few points to this subject, I know we have different understandings on this and I hope you will not be offended, these are questions I have asked myself. What does Scripture support, our soul is an immortal entity that consciously lives on after the death of the body or does it sleep in the grave until the resurrection? Is the definition of death a separation of the soul from the body or is it the end of life, a permanent cessation, and the grave is our home until we are resurrected?

    John 3:15-16 Without the belief in Jesus we will perish the Greek word apollumi means destroy utterly, to put out of the way entirely, abolish as in Psalms 37:10 Psalms 92:7 Proverbs 10:28-29 Job 20:4-7 Malachi 4:1-3 2 Peter 2:12.

    Matthew 10:28 we are to fear the one who can destroy the body and the soul in hell, the Greek word for destroy is apollumi same as perish, a permanent/absolute destruction. Hell, the Greek word is geenna the fire and smoke that goes up and burns forever that never goes out is a reference to the lake of fire. Job 17:13 the Hebrew word sheol is the same word translated as hell. Job 17:16 the word pit is the same Hebrew word.

    Our first death is sleep, Psalms 13:3 Daniel 12:2 Acts 13:36 1 Cor. 15:51. If all souls are immortal which means they have eternal life, the question must be asked, what is the gift of eternal life we see in John 3:15 John 6:54 Romans 6:23 Titus 1:2 1 John 2:25 Jude 1:21? If our soul is immortal, why do we have to put immortality on as said in 1 Corinthians 15:51-58?

    See part 2
  • Jesse - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Hello Ronald,

    Please know that I am not ignoring you. And no, I am not offended at all. You have some questions but I am not sure if you are looking for me to answer any of them as you said these are questions that you have asked yourself. As you stated, we do have a different understanding on this topic.

    Please let me know if you would like me to respond to any of these questions. Thanks!

    God bless!!!
  • Ronald Whittemore - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Hi Jesse,

    I understand in delays in replies many work and have family responsibilities. This subject is being discussed by several people and I just wanted to share a few points of my understanding on it. The questions were not directed towards you, you can reply to them if you want but they were some of the questions I wrote down when I was studying this subject because some Scriptures seem to support both understandings if not deeply studied, not saying you have not.

    Scripture tells us God is love, 1 John 4:8,16 and we have been told God does not have pleasure in the death of the wicked, Ezekiel 33:11 caries us to John 3:16 God does not want us to perish. The Bible tells us the soul that sinneth will die, Ezekiel 18:4 God preserves the souls of the saints Psalms 97:10 the faith and belief in Jesus by the grace of God can save our soul Hebrews 10:39.

    Scripture tells us of various degrees of punishment like in Luke 12:46-48 Revelation 21:8. In Genesis 2:7 man became a living soul/being, my understanding is the breath of God is the spirit of life which goes back to God when we die whether lost or saved and this body becomes a dead soul that sleeps in the dust until resurrection then the judgment Revelation 20.

    To repeat, eternal life is our promise it is something we do not have, only by faith and belief in Jesus Christ by the grace of God we will receive this gift when we are resurrected not before. If we say our souls are immortal, we are saying we already have eternal life, and it is just where are we going to spend it?

    My understanding is the lost and wicked punishment is eternal forever, not the punishing, Satan and the fallen angels the beast and false profit will be tormented day and night for ever and ever as we see in Revelation 20:10, but they are not mortal beings like we are, and we see in Matthew 25:41 it was originally prepared for them.

    Just my understanding of Scripture thanks again.

    God bless,

    RLW
  • Jesse - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Ronald,

    (Part 2 of 2):

    Romans 6:23 says "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." Here, we see a gift of God being given, and that gift is eternal life. Since God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit are eternal, and I receive the gift of the Holy Spirit as it says in Acts 2:38, I believe I can say I have received eternal life. I can say that I have the eternal one living in me, and He has promised to never leave me.

    Eternal life for me began the day that I was born of God's Spirit, the day I received Christ. Now if Christ is not eternal, then I cannot say I have eternal life. But if Christ is eternal, and He lives in me, then I can say with confidence that I currently have eternal life. Jesus said that He would never leave me nor forsake me. So, the question I must ask is when I physically die, does Jesus also remain in the grave with me and sleep?



    Ronald, my apologies if this was too long. I do thank you for sharing what you believe. We both know that we will not always agree with each other on everything, but you have shared many things that I do agree with you on, and I hope that I have done the same.

    God bless you also, my brother in Christ!
  • Ronald Whittemore - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Hi Jesse,

    Thanks for the reply, we do agree on much and I also enjoy our discussions. The Greek definition of the soul and death is where I cannot find that in the Scriptures and that is where our understanding parts and I feel the eternal punishment of the lost comes from the soul is immortal.

    I believe God and Jesus dwell in us by the Holy Spirit and we have been sealed, the down payment has been given, 2 Cor. 1:22. We are sealed unto redemption day, Ephesians 4:30, and my understanding is that is when we are resurrected.

    The same Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead will also raise us and quickens our mortal bodies, Romans 8:11, and that is when we receive immortality and our glorified bodies 1 Corinthians 15:53-54. God and Jesus do not still dwell in us after we die/sleep there is no communication, Psalms 6:5. We have the down payment/earnest, the promise, our hope.

    Thanks again brother, have a great day.

    God bless.

    RLW
  • Hadassah - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Jesse, when you fall asleep, you sleep in the bosom of the LORD who does not slumber or sleep. He keeps you safe in his care while you are sleeping. Then, in the morning (resurrection day) he will wake you up. Call you forth.
  • Jesse - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Hadassah,

    Thank you for the post you have sent me, but as I mentioned earlier, I do not believe in "soul sleep." I know the Seventh Day Adventists teach this, but I do not agree with it. When my fleshly body dies, it will give the appearance of sleeping, but I will not be there. I will be with the Lord and one day, my body will be raised as a glorified body, and my soul/spirit will be reunited with a new body. If I am sleeping in the bosom of the Lord when I die, my question to you is "Where will the Lord be?"
  • Hadassah - In Reply - 7 months ago
    He will be ministering in the heavenly temple.
  • Jesse - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Hello Ronald,

    (Part 1 of 2):

    Thank you for sharing your understanding on this topic. I always enjoy my discussions with you. We are in agreement that God is love. In fact, God is Agape, the highest form of love that exists. We are in agreement that God does not have pleasure in the death of the wicked. That's why He has provided a way for the wicked to be redeemed. We are in agreement that God does not want us to perish. Some take this word perish to mean cease to exist completely. Some teach annihilation. That, I do not agree with. I also don't agree that Hell is only the grave because both believers and non-believers alike are going to end up in a grave (unless the Lord comes for us first).

    I agree that the bible tells in Ezekiel Chapter 18 that the soul that sinneth shall die. I believe it is the soul that makes up our entire being. Can our fleshly body exist without a soul? As far as salvation goes, did Christ come to redeem our flesh, or did He come to redeem our soul? I say that my soul has been redeemed, not my flesh. My flesh is rotten to the core! I agree that there are different degrees of punishment, but as you know, I also believe that whatever the degree of punishment is, it will be forever.

    In my studies of the Greek, I have come to learn that the word for death means separation. This is why I believe that when our physical body of flesh dies, our soul will separate from our fleshly body. The body will rot and decay in the grave, not cease to exist as some say. I do not believe in soul sleep.

    I do agree with you that eternal life is a promise. However, what we differ on is when this eternal life begins. For me, I believe I have eternal life right now. There are several verses in scripture that speak of eternal life/salvation being present tense ( 1 John 5:11, 1 John 5:13, John 17:3, John 10:28-30, John 3:36, John 4:14, 1 Timothy 6:12). These are just some verses that speak of eternal salvation being present, not future.

    Part 2 to follow...
  • Jema - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Thanks once again Ronald , so clearly explained ! You rock ! :) .
  • Jesse - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Hello Jema,

    First, let me say thank you for your response. Honestly, I didn't think you were going to respond. I wasn't even sure that you would read what I posted after seeing my name, knowing that we differ in some of our beliefs. You mentioned that you don't read all the comments as you don't have the time to do so. That is understandable. I don't think any of us have the time to read every single comment here. I wish I had the time to do so because I like to read the things people have to say, whether I agree or disagree.

    Jema, I can't say that I've read all of your posts, but I can say that I have read most of your posts and I will continue to do so because I enjoy reading them. You have always given me the impression of being a very kind and caring person. Also, your love for the Lord is quite obvious and I would never question that.

    You also mentioned in one of your posts that you "always look out for people asking questions." Well, I asked you some questions (maybe too many?), but you chose not to answer any of them. Is it because I was questioning something you believed? On an open forum, we should expect to be questioned from time to time on what we say, and if someone disagrees on something and asks where in the bible can they find the things we are saying, we should at least point them to the scriptures and at least be open to discussion of those scriptures.

    Jema, you said that you have explained your beliefs on here before. I asked, "Where in the bible does it say that the soul will cease to exist?" If you have already explained this in a previous post and I missed it, then I do apologize. I will go back and look for your explanation on that. Can you at least estimate how long ago it was that you explained how the soul ceases to exist so it might be easier for me to find?

    I'm sorry, I didn't mean this to be this long. I need a little more space if you don't mind? I will send a part 2.
  • Ronald Whittemore - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Jesse,

    Part 2

    My understanding is everyone will face judgment there is the first resurrection in Rev. 20 and the white throne judgment of all who have lived excluding those in the first resurrection who have already received their glorified bodies and judged, Rev. 20:4 and have been reigning with Jesus for a thousand years.

    The second resurrection and judgment is called the second death, in this judgment, all who are not found in the Book of Life are cast into the lake of fire and they will perish, this punishment based on their works is everlasting to be no more, not an eternal conscious torment. We are given an example in Jude 1:7 of how the wicked will perish, the same way Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed in the eternal fire for eternity never to be again.

    Just a little of how I understand it, I know you know the Greek words' meaning better than I do, thank you.

    God bless,

    RLW
  • GiGi - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Hi Ronald, I hope you don't mind my input here.

    How do you understand John 11:25-26?

    "Jesus said unto her, "I am the Resurrection, and the light: he who believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live.

    And whoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?"
  • Ronald Whittemore - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Hi GiGi,

    Of course, I do not mind, you have always treated me with respect and care.

    What John 11:25-26 means to me. Jesus is the resurrection, His perfect life when He died on the cross and was buried in a tomb death could not hold Him. To me, it is the gospel, the simplicity of Jesus Christ, the message of salvation, and our hope in eternal life. Even if we die, we who believe in Jesus Christ will live as we see in John 5:29 the resurrection of life.

    We sleep in death, but we have the promise of eternal life, we will never die. Those of the wicked and lost will face the second death, the permanent death of no return. As Jesus asked Martha do you believe this, regardless of what we face and the struggles and doubts we have in this world we go through in this fleshly body, all of our hope and trust must be in Jesus, who is the truth, the light, and what He said will come to be.

    God bless,

    RLW
  • GiGi - In Reply - 7 months ago
    oops, Ronald, meant to type "and the "life"
  • Jesse - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Jema or Shabbat Keeper,

    (Part 2):

    In Luke 16:19-31, we read about the rich man and Lazarus. What I notice is that they both died. It speaks of the rich man being in Hades, and being in torment. What is interesting if you read through that section, the rich man can feel, he can speak, he can see, he can remember, and he is in torment. Notice in Verse 26 that there is a great gulf fixed and no one is able to cross over from one side to the other. There is no hope for those on the opposite side of Abraham's bosom. The question here is, why didn't the rich man cease to exist when he died?

    In Mark 9:43-47, even though this is not literally talking about plucking your eye out or cutting off your hand, it does speak of some entering into life, and some being cast into Hell. If the wicked one who has rejected Christ dies and ceases to exist, how can he be cast into Hell?

    In Revelation 20:5, it tells us that the rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended. Obviously, there must have been a previous resurrection because this talks about the rest of the dead not being resurrected until after the 1,000-year reign. How can those who cease to exist be resurrected? How do you raise or resurrect something that does not exist?

    John 5:29 says, "And come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment." Again, how do you resurrect and judge someone that does not exist?

    Again, in Luke 16:28, the rich man says, "For I have five brothers, so that he may warn them, lest they also come into this place of torment." This rich man is in a place of torment. He did not cease to exist when he died. Why not?

    I just have a few more questions if you don't mind, so I will need one more post.
  • Jesse - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Jema or Shabbat Keeper,

    (Part 1):

    Where in the bible does it say that the soul will cease to exist? If anyone ceases to exist when they die, can you please answer these questions. I will be the student here, so you have my attention. If you choose to answer these things, I do thank you ahead of time.

    In Matthew 25:46, Is this not describing two classes of people, those who received Christ and belong to Him, and those who have rejected Him? If those who reject Him die and cease to exist, how can they go away into eternal punishment if they do not exist?

    Revelation 14:11 says that the smoke of their torment goes up forever and ever, and they have no rest, day or night. How can this be for someone that does not exist?

    Hebrews 9:27 tells us that it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment. How can anyone who dies and ceases to exist be judged since this judgment comes (after) death?

    Revelation 21:8 identifies a class of individuals who will end up in the lake of fire, and it also mentions that this is the second death. If they went through the first death and ceased to exist, how can they experience a second death if they do not exist?

    2 Thessalonians 1:9 says that they will suffer the punishment of (eternal destruction), away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might. How is ceasing to exist considered suffering?

    Jema, since Romans 6:23 has been quoted which says that the wages of sin is death, how do you get cease to exist out of this word death when the Greek word used (Thanatos) means separation, not cessation of life? Wouldn't it be more appropriate to say that at death, there is a separation from our physical body since this is what the word death means?

    Revelation 14:10 talks about being tormented with fire and sulfur in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. Who is this for and how long will this torment last?

    I have more questions to follow. Thank you for your time.
  • Shabbat Keeper - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Sorry, that was hello. Excuse my typo.
  • Shabbat Keeper - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Hell Jema,

    Totally agree with your comments of the state of soul in death and totally agree that eternal life is granted only to those in Christ.

    Scary thought to cease to exist! But, that's exactly right! The satanic Vatican is behind the change of understanding.
  • Chris - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Are you saying, Shabbat Keeper, that it would be a scary thought that unbelievers will just cease to exist upon dying? Just clarifying. But if that is the case, I doubt if it would be scary for them since they have already died ( Ecclesiastes 9:5) - or have I missed something?

    If I were an unbeliever & continued to resist the Gospel of Salvation, knowing that only death & no more was the end of my mortal existence, I would live it up even more while I still have breath - for tomorrow I die & will be no more. What then is the Gospel that we preach? For what purpose did Christ have to come & die? Why did He have to bear the sins of the world with God's Wrath/Punishment, if the unbeliever has none of it to confront him after death? And lastly, if death alone is the punishment, then both believer & unbeliever alike have to face death one day if the Lord tarries. Now if the believer by his faith & God's Mercy never ever tastes of physical death (maybe he gets to old age & then raptured), then maybe there is some small message of hope to the unbeliever in such a Gospel.
  • Shabbat Keeper - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Hi Chris, I was thinking, overall, what an icky thought it is, to stop existing.

    I know people that don't believe in Christ. They are so secular that they are disinterested and bored with the topic of their eternal destination, Sad.

    But, you brought up a whole new subject that bears discussion. And, that would be the rapture. I believed in the rapture for a good thirty plus years. It was a shock to my system (it even made me angry) to discover that there is no rapture of the Left Behind type.

    I did to a great deal of reading, both for and against the rapture. It is too big a topic for this forum. Suffice it to say, if we look at the Biblical history, we will be here for tribulation. But, God will protect and provide as he did for the Israelites at the Exodus. And, as he provided a way out of Jerusalem in AD 70 for the Christian's.

    "Say to them of a fearful heart, Behold, your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompense, He will come and save you." This verse brings tears of relief to me and makes me want to hug God.
  • Chris - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Page 1.

    Actually Shabbat Keeper, I wasn't intending to bring up the Rapture debate here, as it has been well discussed over the years. Rather, I was intending to give, maybe a rather flimsy example of a type of Gospel message, telling unbelievers that "when we turn to the Lord for forgiveness of our sins & receiving Christ into our life, then we will not face (physical) death, but just be raptured (caught up, as with Enoch/Elijah), to forever be with him". Here then would be something for the unbeliever to consider, because as sure as day turns into night, we all (believer & unbeliever alike) will face death - whether this thought leaves an 'icky' feeling in us depends on how we view death. So, rapture is not my issue here, but why is death any more of a punishment when we all have to die & knowing that death (of the body) means a complete eradication of any iota of life (in body, breath, mind, & senses). Often death is welcome, especially for the terminally ill or suffering, & whether or not one experiences a new pain-free joyful existence in the Lord's Presence or not, holds little attraction if there is no more consciousness in death or after it.

    If death is the only punishment to the Christ-rejecter, then why do we all have to die? And if I might ask (verses that some don't care to address), why are there so many Scriptures to warn us that physical death is not the end (e.g. Matthew 5:22,29,30; Matthew 10:28; Matthew 23:33; Mark 9:43-48; Luke 16:19-31; Revelation 20:10,11-15); all these pointing to the reality of an eternal torment? As one who doesn't believe in such an eternity, I ask you (as I've done in the past with others), why are these Scriptures rejected so as to support an emotion-charged belief rather than a biblical Truth? Why do we reject or re-write these passages to suit us, when they're given direct from the Mouth of our Lord?
  • Shabbat Keeper - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Hi Chris,

    This comment is in reply to what happens to the condemned soul.

    See on YouTube: Clash of Minds episode 178. At about 7 minutes into the lecture, Pastor Veith mentions that the condemned soul ceases to exist.

    178 WUP Walter Veith & Martin Smith - Do not Worship The Beast And his Image, And Receive his Mark

    Clash Of Minds

    133K subscribers

    Pastor Veith has dealt with this subject in previous lectures though I cannot seem to find it now.
  • Chris - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Thank you Shabbat Keeper for coming back to me. I'll respond to your three recent posts to me with my one here.

    Firstly, on the name 'Gehenna', otherwise called the "Valley of Hinnom", the Encyclopaedia definition is quite correct about the purpose why that area was set aside. It was indeed a place for the burning of refuse & the dead. And yes, it meant that they were all annihilated - no more evidence except dust & ashes. So, it can mean 'annihilation', but Gehenna can also mean 'a place of burning where the fires are never quenched'. And we know that the body is disposed of there, but what about the immaterial parts of man that remains accountable to God? And you also referenced a verse I quoted in Matthew 10:28. Taken on its own, that verse could well support your belief of a complete extermination of body, soul & spirit.

    But it was for that very reason that I gave you the other verses to look up & consider. Not only was Matthew 10:28 Jesus' Words, but also Matthew 5:22,29,30; Matthew 23:33; Mark 9:43; Luke 16:19-31; Revelation 20:10,11-15. You didn't take these into account. And we know, as I trust you are conversant, that when we deal with a topic or a doctrine from the Bible, we need to take in all the references that deal specifically with it. Unfortunately, our natural human instinct is to accept only those that we find palatable or in agreement with, thus distorting the teaching from the Word.

    So, if you would care to look at those other verses & see how they affect your understanding of Matthew 10:28, I would be very interested. It's only when we consider all verses on a subject, can we get a fuller picture of it meaning & its implications. However, sometimes there aren't too many verses to help us learn about the subject - in such cases we can't force a teaching by them & just leave the subject open. Yet, not so with these important doctrines of the Deity of Christ & human existence & punishment after death.
  • Shabbat Keeper - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Chris,

    Luke 16:19-31 was a common PARABLE of that time. Jesus was using it as a TEACHING lesson. And, by the way, this Lazarus in the story is not the same Lazarus that Jesus raised from the dead.

    In no way, was Jesus saying the dead suffer in a state of torment. Also, by your reasoning, how exactly can a disembodied spirit be thirsty? How can a disembodied spirit feel pain? Impossible!
  • Chris - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Page 1.

    Again, dealing with your recent comments to me, now in one post, Shabbat Keeper. Firstly, Adam has written very well to Jema, so I won't bring up the matter of the definition of "eternal/eternity", which should alone convince us that physical death is not the end for anyone (believer or unbeliever).

    If I'm correct from your first post to me, "what an icky thought it is, to stop existing", you believe in the total annihilation of the body at death (for the unbeliever). So, when the Bible speaks of man, his existence & his death, we are first reminded that man is a tripartite being (i.e. one whose composition is of body, soul & spirit: 1 Thessalonians 5:23). When the body dies, it decomposes back to the Earth, but those parts of man that cannot be killed ( Matthew 10:28) can never be destroyed. Unlike animals, man's spirit, given by God, returns to Him ( Ecclesiastes 3:21), whereas animals cease to exist - forever. Therefore, if man, made by God to reflect His Image & traits, is accountable to God, will never cease to exist (his spirit & soul cannot be destroyed, whether by death, fire, or whatever), & he will stand in judgement before God. For this reason, the Gospel is so vital for all to hear, to alert all people that death is not final - there remains an accountability & their final judgement will be based on what they have done with Jesus Who came for them.

    You wrote, "Hell fire is the same thing as destruction" & you gave the example of a house on fire. A house is physical/material, a spirit is not - it can never be destroyed. The real Shabbat Keeper or myself are found in our spirits/souls - the body is simply the house in which we need to live in. So yes, this house is corrupt & temporal, but we who have Christ's Spirit in us, look to be clothed (endowed) with that "house which is from heaven" ( 2 Corinthians 5:1-6). Likewise, hell (not the grave), is the dwelling place of those who have spurned God's Love - spirits they are & in torment.
  • Shabbat Keeper - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Hello Chris,

    Well , happily for us, this question is not a salvific issue. The LORD gives all a free will to determine what's what.

    May the LORD bless your continued studies. :)
  • Chris - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Page 2.

    Jesus in His teaching on this (& this account was not a parable as it does not meet the definition of a parable) is found in Luke 16:20-31, showing that the spirit of man must go somewhere. In the OT economy, where Hades was that temporary residence of departed souls till the Cross, Jesus still taught that there was consciousness in the after-life & also places of rest & waiting and also of torment. And Jesus was giving a real view of life beyond the grave, or else by naming people & places, He was just a deceiver. Jesus never did that; all His parables were without specifics, just everyday situations to which there was a special meaning. Luke 16 is not a parable but a view of the after-life - and He should know.

    "Hell is a finality.", you wrote. No, Hell & Heaven are only the beginning. Our lives on Earth are but a quick snapshot of time compared to an everlasting existence, whether in God's Presence or in torment. And finally, you stated a good question, "Also, by your reasoning, how exactly can a disembodied spirit be thirsty? How can a disembodied spirit feel pain? Impossible!" What Jesus was teaching here is that the departed spirit can still feel agony, just as there can be joy & celebration (e.g. Luke 15:10). The spirit of this 'rich man' wasn't thirsty for even a sip of water - he was in torment, & sought comfort, ANY comfort, to relieve him of his agony. Would any amount of water have helped him - I seriously doubt it, but our earthly comparison to this would be, "a drowning man will clutch at a straw" to try & save himself, & would fit the Luke 16 account. And the rich man even pleaded that his brothers would be warned now while still alive, lest they come into such an awful place. So the actual fundamental question remains is: since the Word of God is replete with accounts of the awfulness of a Christ-less eternity, are we going to take the warnings given in it as just a story/a parable/a fable or believe in Jesus & the apostles' words?
  • Mary Jay - In Reply - 7 months ago
    Shabbat Keeper:

    Luke 16:31 And he said unto them, if they hear not MOSES and the PROPHETS, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose

    from the dead.

    Acts 24:14 But this I confess unto you, that after the way they (the church) call HERESY, so worship I the God of my fathers; believing ALL THINGS written in the LAW and the PROPHETS.

    Acts 28:23 And when they had appointed him a day, they came many unto him in his lodging, to whom he expounded and testified the KINGDOM of GOD, persuading them concerning Jesus, both out of the law of Moses,and out of the prophets, from morning till evening.

    Most don't believe ALL THINGS written in MOSES and the PROPHETS.

    Psalms 149:9 To execute upon them the judgement written, this honoru hath all his saints.

    Isaiah 26:9 ... for when thy judgements (administered by the saints) are in the earth (second resurrection), the world WILL LEARN righteousness.

    Psalms 22:27 All the ends of the world SHALL REMEMBER (when they are resurrected and judged by the saints) AND TURN (repent) unto the LORD: and all the kindreds of the nations shall worship before thee.

    Isaiah 66:24 And they (the saints) shall go forth, and look upon the carcasses of the men that have transgressed against me, for their (the saints) WORM shall not die; neither shall their (the saints') FIRE be quenched, and they (the saints) shall be and abhorring to all flesh.

    Job 25:6 And much less man, that is a worm?and the son or man WHICH IS A WORM.

    Psalms 22:6 .... But I am a worm .....

    Mark 9:46 Where their WORM dieth not, nor is the FIRE quenched.

    Hebrews 12:29 For our God is a consuming fire.

    Matthew 13:34 ... and without a parable he spake he not unto them......

    The whole word of God is Christ speaking.

    Psalms 78:2 I will open my mouth in a PARABLE: I will open my DARK SAYINGS of the harps (his people)

    God Bless you


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