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Thread: The Doctrine of Hell

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    Re: The Doctrine of Hell

    W.B.
    their eschatology was off which is the very reason they were out in the desert to begin with.

    In light of the conditions in Palestine during the first century B.C. it seems to me that going to the wilderness to wait for the Messiah would be the most orthodox thing for a student of OT eschatology to do.
    B.T.
    I will work on providing quotes--but do not have time for extensive debate: as I say, my thoughts are not systematized on this so I am not ready to engage in controversy at this point.
    Please understand I too am not willing to debate. I have recently come to realize that I have spent way to much time debating with fellow Christians over minor points of doctrine and not enough time quietly learning from those with a slightly different take on things. With Gods help I will try to be better in the future.

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    Re: The Doctrine of Hell

    Hello Bill.

    I'm pleased to see that you've shaken off this particular lie.

    Do however, beware of the rabbis. I'd hate to see you replace one set of

    lies with another.

    Tim

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    Re: The Doctrine of Hell

    Hey Wildboar, the folks out in the desert with the scrolls weren't just nomads;
    the group's nucleus were the members of the sanhedrin dismissed by Herod the
    Great at some point after 40 BC.

    Tim

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    Re: The Doctrine of Hell

    Quote Originally Posted by thetimbo
    Hey Wildboar, the folks out in the desert with the scrolls weren't just nomads;
    the group's nucleus were the members of the sanhedrin dismissed by Herod the
    Great at some point after 40 BC.

    Tim
    Tim , if it was sometime after 40BC would that still be before Christ was born or we do not really know?

    greetings and salutations, el rana
    3Behold, I will corrupt your seed, and spread dung upon your faces, even the dung of your solemn feasts; and one shall take you away with it.Malachi 2

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    Re: The Folks in the Desert

    I have no interest in debating who the 'folks in the desert' were! They were the same range of Nonconformists that have existed for thousands of years: ranging from the most genuine of orthodox believers to absolute and incomprehensible kooks! The Dead Sea Scrolls consist of an ancient library and reveal a whole range of beliefs and diversity of peoples.
    I got four things to live by: don't say nothin' that will hurt anybody; don't give advice--no one will take it anyway; don't complain; don't explain. Walter Scott

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    Re: The Doctrine of Hell

    In case anyone doubts the influence of Hellenistic theology on the so-called 'Christian fathers', read the different articles here. It will blow your mind.

    I have completely abandoned the notion that God invests every soul with unending existence at the union of sperm and egg.

    http://www.torreys.org/bible/philo&beg.html#6.
    I got four things to live by: don't say nothin' that will hurt anybody; don't give advice--no one will take it anyway; don't complain; don't explain. Walter Scott

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    Re: The Doctrine of Hell

    Quote Originally Posted by BillTwisse
    In case anyone doubts the influence of Hellenistic theology on the so-called 'Christian fathers', read the different articles here. It will blow your mind.

    I have completely abandoned the notion that God invests every soul with unending existence at the union of sperm and egg.

    http://www.torreys.org/bible/philo&beg.html#6.
    Finally!!

    Man, do you have any idea how hard it is for somone like me to find this type of information online!?

    Thanks Brother.

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    Re: The Doctrine of Hell

    I have no doubt that these early church fathers were influenced by Hellenistic philosophy. However it does little in proving the doctrine of eternal suffering wrong. The Scriptures must be used to do that. All this would show is the origin of the teaching after it was shown that the interpretation of Scriptures was incorrect. Otherwise we end up like the JWs saying that the Trinity is wrong because the RCC teaches it.
    For whatever strength of arm he may have who swims in the open sea, yet in time he is carried away and sunk, mastered by the greatness of its waves. Need then there is that we be in the ship, that is, that we be carried in the wood, that we may be able to cross this sea. Now this Wood in which our weakness is carried is the Cross of the Lord, by which we are signed, and delivered from the dangerous tempests of this world.--St. Augustine

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    Re: The Doctrine of Hell

    WB challenges:

    I have no doubt that these early church fathers were influenced by Hellenistic philosophy. However it does little in proving the doctrine of eternal suffering wrong. The Scriptures must be used to do that. All this would show is the origin of the teaching after it was shown that the interpretation of Scriptures was incorrect. Otherwise we end up like the JWs saying that the Trinity is wrong because the RCC teaches it.

    The Trinity is in an entirely different plane. I know that many Protestants want to make the doctrine of eternal suffering as much an article of faith 'unto salvation' as the Trinity. However, there is no basis for this in scripture.

    By the way, I have not stated any definite conviction of a change in my position on 'eternal suffering' yet; I have stated that I do not believe the numerical majority of souls in hell are spontaneously aborted zygotes, which medical science tells us consist of half of all those conceived!

    So far, that is all that I have concluded definitely.
    I got four things to live by: don't say nothin' that will hurt anybody; don't give advice--no one will take it anyway; don't complain; don't explain. Walter Scott

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    Re: The Doctrine of Hell

    Quote Originally Posted by BillTwisse

    By the way, I have not stated any definite conviction of a change in my position on 'eternal suffering' yet; I have stated that I do not believe the numerical majority of souls in hell are spontaneously aborted zygotes, which medical science tells us consist of half of all those conceived!

    So far, that is all that I have concluded definitely.
    You would concurr though that we do not prove eternal damnation from manmade science but by God's Word. That being said Bill when looking through Scripture what would be apparent to you from God's Word that eternal damnation does not exist? What is striking to me is that in defining the decree of reprobation the term "eternal damnation" is widely used in the reformed confession.
    Consider the following on the word "Sheol" and "Hades":

    It is also true, however, as the AV translators saw clearly, that it cannot and may not always be translated "grave." There are a number of passages where Sheol clearly refers to Hell as the place of eternal punishment.

    In Job 11:8, Isaiah 14:15, and Amos 9:2, the contrast is between Heaven and Hell, not Heaven and the grave. In Proverbs 23:13, 14, the death referred to cannot be physical death (chastisement does not deliver from it, but from eternal death) and therefore Sheol must refer to Hell, the place of eternal death, and not the grave.

    Likewise, Job 26:6, Proverbs 15:11 and 27:20 speak of "hell and destruction." The word destruction is the Hebrew word, Abaddon, which in Revelation is the name for a messenger of Hell (Rev. 9:11). In light of that NT passage it is far better to identify both Abaddon and Sheol with Hell in the passages where they are used together.

    We are convinced the in the NT Hades ALWAYS refers eternal punishment. In every undisputed passage that is the case. If so, then not only is the translation of Acts 2:27, 31 correct, but those passages reflect back on Psalm 16:10, from which they quote, and suggest that they too are referring to Hell, not the grave, when they speak of Sheol.

    But why in the OT is the same Hebrew word used to refer both to the grave and to Hell? The answer is that the grave, apart from the redeeming work of Christ, is the entrance, the courtyard of Hell. All who go to the grave also go to Hell, unless they are rescued by the blood and sacrifice of Christ, who destroys that victory of the grave (I Cor. 15:55), and opens a new way out of it for those whom the Father gave Him.

    The grave, therefore, even in the OT, as the place to which all go, is not a neutral place, but a place of suffering from which one must be redeemed (Ps. 116:3-8). And we are redeemed! Because of Christ's obedience and suffering the grave and death could not hold Him (Acts 2:24), nor can it hold those who are in Him by faith. Through Him who loved them believers are more than conquerors even over the grave (Rom. 8:37). Rev.Ronald Hanko

    greetings and salutations, el rana

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    Re: The Doctrine of Hell

    Ray: That being said Bill when looking through Scripture what would be apparent to you from God's Word that eternal damnation does not exist?

    Nothing. The lot of the wicked is either 'everlasting shame and contempt' or 'shame and everlasting contempt' (Dan. 12:2); depending on how the Hebrew is translated. All we are talking about is the MEANING of eternal damnation or eternal KOLASIS (punishment)--and whether the history of dogma in the line of Tertullian and Augustine (who were themselves heavily influenced by Plato and Philo) has been influenced in the interpretation of those terms.

    Sheol for the wicked involves an afterlife of suffering for at least many generations; I totally support that. How, when, where, those are the issues. Plus the nature of the resurrection of the ungodly and whether Tertullian and Augustine added to scripture on this point.
    I got four things to live by: don't say nothin' that will hurt anybody; don't give advice--no one will take it anyway; don't complain; don't explain. Walter Scott

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    An Additional Challenge

    For those who are up to the challenge of answering the HARD questions, I will pose this one:

    If God has not determined in his eternal purposes to invest EVERY SINGLE HUMAN BIOLOGICAL UNION of sperm and egg with eternal existence, is the doctrine of absolute unending suffering in jeapordy? In other words, is the doctrine of absolute unending suffering dependent upon the doctrine of the fact that every union of sperm and egg is invested with absolutely unending future existence? Please be explicit and logical in answering or it means nothing to me.

    As I have stated before, my thoughts on this issue have definitely become un-systematized. I don't have a new answer that is logical and consistent yet. But I DEFINITELY know now that I was deceived by our many Christian scholars devoted to Plato, the Pharisaic Rabbis, Philo, Tertullian, and Augustine. Institutional Christian dogma is HEAVILY dependent on Greek philosophy on many doctrines, especially including this one.

    Unless there are biblical answers that are as sure and certain as the Deity and saving work of Jesus Christ, they will mean nothing to me.
    I got four things to live by: don't say nothin' that will hurt anybody; don't give advice--no one will take it anyway; don't complain; don't explain. Walter Scott

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    Re: The Doctrine of Hell

    Bob:
    If God has not determined in his eternal purposes to invest EVERY SINGLE HUMAN BIOLOGICAL UNION of sperm and egg with eternal existence, is the doctrine of absolute unending suffering in jeapordy?

    Logically no, because we do not have to link the two. The problem here is that the connection is assumed. Does that make sense? I think I see where you are going with this. God can determine to give eternal existense to some and not others, the trick here is to determine if scripture affirms that.

    Bob:
    In other words, is the doctrine of absolute unending suffering dependent upon the doctrine of the fact that every union of sperm and egg is invested with absolutely unending future existence?

    Once again no. Absolute unending suffering can exist as God's purpose for some, it does not require a 'universal' application.

    Mike


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    Re: An Additional Challenge

    Quote Originally Posted by BillTwisse
    As I have stated before, my thoughts on this issue have definitely become un-systematized. I don't have a new answer that is logical and consistent yet. But I DEFINITELY know now that I was deceived by our many Christian scholars devoted to Plato, the Pharisaic Rabbis, Philo, Tertullian, and Augustine. Institutional Christian dogma is HEAVILY dependent on Greek philosophy on many doctrines, especially including this one.
    What about Aristotle? Could it be that he also is responsible for deceiving people?

    Wasn't it him that came up with the idea of right to left reasoning?

    Martin

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    Re: The Doctrine of Hell

    Martin: What about Aristotle? Could it be that he also is responsible for deceiving people? Wasn't it him that came up with the idea of right to left reasoning?

    Boy, what a loaded question! I agree with you in this sense: Aristotle with his natural theology was trying to re-introduce the logical element in philosophy that he felt Plato had avoided in his 'pure world of ideas':

    For Plato the form every science should take is dichotomous--illustrated in the Sophist by the angler. To this conception of the form of science Aristotle has two objections. First, the process of dichotomy does not of itself furnish the information necessary to locate a given species. Second, dichotomy does not reveal the cause of a thing's existence, whereas the syllogism does. Ancient Philosophy, Gordon H. Clark (The Trinity Foundation, 1997), p. 187 .

    So Aristotle objected to Plato's paradoxical thought. He had logic well-enough but not revelation! So from that stand-point we can say that he was left-to-right. To reason from the end to beginning requires God's revelation, otherwise it is impossible.

    I definitely believe that the paradoxical thought of Plato was the prominent belief of the Hellenistic world, not the logical and naturalistic thought of Aristotle. Even though both are certainly wrong in terms of the gospel.
    I got four things to live by: don't say nothin' that will hurt anybody; don't give advice--no one will take it anyway; don't complain; don't explain. Walter Scott

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    Re: The Doctrine of Hell

    Mike:
    ________________________________________
    Bob: (previously)
    If God has not determined in his eternal purposes to invest EVERY SINGLE HUMAN BIOLOGICAL UNION of sperm and egg with eternal existence, is the doctrine of absolute unending suffering in jeapordy?


    Logically no, because we do not have to link the two. The problem here is that the connection is assumed. Does that make sense? I think I see where you are going with this. God can determine to give eternal existense to some and not others, the trick here is to determine if scripture affirms that.
    ________________________________________
    Bob: (presently)
    I agree with you totally. That is where I am on this right now; dispensing with a-priori assumptions and trying to re-discover the teaching of revelation from the ground up. Basically, what I have learned so far is that the Bible is not as clear on these points as often assumed. That does not bother me; it is obvious that God has made the essentials clear and left other things to some mystery. On those we must trust the judge of all the earth to do right.


    Mike:
    _______________________________________
    Bob: (previously)
    In other words, is the doctrine of absolute unending suffering dependent upon the doctrine of the fact that every union of sperm and egg is invested with absolutely unending future existence?

    Once again no. Absolute unending suffering can exist as God's purpose for some, it does not require a 'universal' application.
    _______________________________________

    Bob: (presently)

    I totally agree again! For me (obviously not for many others), the burden of proof for the opposite view lies with those who hold to it. None of the books I have in my library (defending the traditional view) have demonstrated their position beyond doubt--if accepted principles of hermeneutics are applied.
    I got four things to live by: don't say nothin' that will hurt anybody; don't give advice--no one will take it anyway; don't complain; don't explain. Walter Scott

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    Re: The Doctrine of Hell

    Bob:
    For me (obviously not for many others), the burden of proof for the opposite view lies with those who hold to it. None of the books I have in my library (defending the traditional view) have demonstrated their position beyond doubt--if accepted principles of hermeneutics are applied.

    What I put in the bold from your statement is something I am starting to learn more and more. There is so much dogma on so many issues that is assumed or accepted to be orthodox because it is held by a majority or has been held for a time.

    I took an apologetics course through Stand to Reason (www.str.org) about a year ago. Something I learned from that course was how to hold people accountable for the assertions they make. Far to often those that don't share the current 'mainsteam' view are in the hot seat (us in many cases), when seldom do these mainstreamers have an answer for anything they hold to.

    Anyway back to the subject at hand...


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    Re: An Additional Challenge

    Quote Originally Posted by BillTwisse
    For those who are up to the challenge of answering the HARD questions, I will pose this one:

    If God has not determined in his eternal purposes to invest EVERY SINGLE HUMAN BIOLOGICAL UNION of sperm and egg with eternal existence, is the doctrine of absolute unending suffering in jeapordy? In other words, is the doctrine of absolute unending suffering dependent upon the doctrine of the fact that every union of sperm and egg is invested with absolutely unending future existence? Please be explicit and logical in answering or it means nothing to me.

    Bill I have a question. Do you think that those whom God has predestined to eternal damnation cease to exist?


    greetings and salutations, el rana

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    Neither Traditionalist nor Annihilationistl

    Ray: Bill I have a question. Do you think that those whom God has predestined to eternal damnation cease to exist?

    I am neither a traditionalist nor an annihilationist; I cannot propose ultimate cessation of existence for all damned souls as the clear teaching of scripture. But if I were to engage in book reviews, I can find many hermeneutical violations in both positions. However, the Lord has me working on a different task at the moment.
    I got four things to live by: don't say nothin' that will hurt anybody; don't give advice--no one will take it anyway; don't complain; don't explain. Walter Scott

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    Re: Neither Traditionalist nor Annihilationistl

    Quote Originally Posted by BillTwisse
    Ray: Bill I have a question. Do you think that those whom God has predestined to eternal damnation cease to exist?

    I am neither a traditionalist nor an annihilationist; I cannot propose ultimate cessation of existence for all damned souls as the clear teaching of scripture. But if I were to engage in book reviews, I can find many hermeneutical violations in both positions. However, the Lord has me working on a different task at the moment.
    No problem Bill. I had been reading through God's Word in Jude, the rallying cry for the saints to contend for the faith where "everlasting chains under darkness" and "eternal fire" are specifically described to the lot of the reprobate. What do you think?

    greetings and salutations, el rana

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