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Monday, September 7, 2020

The ends of the 4 Christian hells, Part 4 (short version)

The final Christian hell we are going to look at is not translated as hell in any bible that I'm aware of. Despite this, much of Christianity says the lake of fire is hell ... and hades/sheol is hell ... and Gehenna is hell ... and Tartarus is hell. That's 4 distinct places said to be hell by Christianity. And that's a mess. But Christianity is not concerned with how messy, and unscriptural, their teachings and traditions of hell are.

The lake of fire/second death is the last "hell" standing. And it will stand for a length of time, playing its part in God's plans, until its part is no longer needed.

The lake of fire is mentioned six times in the Scriptures. From the Concordant Literal New Testament (CLNT),
Revelation 19:20
And the wild beast is arrested, and with it the false prophet who does the signs in its sight, by which he deceives those getting the emblem of the wild beast, and those worshiping its image. Living, the two were cast into the lake of fire burning with sulphur.
Revelation 20:10–15
And the Adversary who is deceiving them was cast into the lake of fire and sulphur, where the wild beast and where the false prophet are also. And they shall be tormented day and night for the eons of the eons. 11 And I perceived a great white throne, and Him Who is sitting upon it, from Whose face earth and heaven fled, and no place was found for them. 12 And I perceived the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne. And scrolls were opened. And another scroll was opened which is the scroll of life. And the dead were judged by that which is written in the scrolls in accord with their acts. 13 And the sea gives up the dead in it, and death and the unseen give up the dead in them. And they were condemned, each in accord with their acts. 14 And death and the unseen were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death-the lake of fire. 15 And if anyone was not found written in the scroll of life, he was cast into the lake of fire.
Revelation 21:8
Yet the timid, and unbelievers, and the abominable, and murderers, and paramours, and enchanters, and idolaters, and all the false-their part is in the lake burning with fire and sulphur, which is the second death.

The second death


There are two more verses teaching us about the second death. Revelation 2:11, "Who has an ear, let him hear what the spirit is saying to the ecclesias. 'The one who is conquering may under no circumstances be injured by the second death.'"

And Revelation 20:6, "Happy and holy is he who is having part in the former resurrection! Over these the second death has no jurisdiction, but they will be priests of God and of Christ, and they will be reigning with Him the thousand years."
 

"Surely, the lake of fire is the end for the baddies."


If you've read this series, you've seen that hades/sheol is not the end for the dead. Gehenna is also not their end. And Tartarus is not the end of the sinning messengers. But surely, Shirley, the lake of fire is the end of the road for unbelievers. Right?

The last thing we read about the lake of fire/second death in the last book in our bibles, Revelation, is this,
Yet the timid, and unbelievers, and the abominable, and murderers, and paramours, and enchanters, and idolaters, and all the false-their part is in the lake burning with fire and sulphur, which is the second death. (Revelation 21:8)
One would think this will be their final end if one thinks the book of Revelation is the end of God's eonian story. And one would be wrong.

The last people to ever die (meaning the death event, not the process of dying) will be those cast into the lake of fire. They will be killed by the second death. Annihilationists and eternal tormentists say those cast into the lake of fire will be dead forever. The annihilationists say they will be the dead-dead, while the eternal tormentists say they will be the living-dead. Thus, according to their demonic teachings, death operates forever as it holds the dead in the death state. According to them, since death is no longer killing people, is has been abolished by Christ, thus fulfilling 1 Corinthians 15:26, "The last enemy is being abolished: death." But how can that be true if the second death holds people forever? It can't. They give death a great victory over Christ and "the living God, Who is the Saviour of all mankind, especially of believers" (1 Timothy 4:10). They "are deceived, not being acquainted with the scriptures, nor yet with the power of God" (Matthew 22:29). 

God, our phenomenally creative genius Creator, tucked the end of the eonian story inside the guts of His book. It's better than anything you've ever read. And it's found in 1 Corinthians 15:20–28.   


"When will the second death be abolished?"


That is a great question. Here's the great answer, provided by God.

In 1 Corinthians 15:20–28, God reveals to us events that will occur long after those revealed in the book of Revelation. In this passage He gives us many key indicators that will signal the successful completion of Christ's reign, which includes the abolition of death. Christianity misses this by a mile, or, shall I say, by an eon.

Yet now Christ has been roused from among the dead, the Firstfruit of those who are reposing. 21 For since, in fact, through a man came death, through a Man, also, comes the resurrection of the dead. 22 For even as, in Adam, all are dying, thus also, in Christ, shall all be vivified. 23 Yet each in his own class: the Firstfruit, Christ; thereupon those who are Christ's in His presence; 24 thereafter the consummation, whenever He may be giving up the kingdom to His God and Father, whenever He should be nullifying all sovereignty and all authority and power. 25 For He must be reigning until He should be placing all His enemies under His feet. 26 The last enemy is being abolished: death.
27 For He subjects all under His feet. Now whenever He may be saying that all is subject, it is evident that it is outside of Him Who subjects all to Him. 28 Now, whenever all may be subjected to Him, then the Son Himself also shall be subjected to Him Who subjects all to Him, that God may be All in all.

This whole passage is key. Within this key passage is the key verse 22, "For even as, in Adam, all are dying, thus also, in Christ, shall all be vivified." Christianity does not believe, or teach, this simple, tradition-shattering truth that God caused Paul to write to bless the socks and shoes off of humanity. In fact, they hate it because it is so simple and true, and they have a hell of a time trying to squeeze this big truth into their teeny-tiny god box. This simple truth tells us that all who are dying because of Adam (that's every single human) will be vivified because of Christ. I don't know how God could have made this truth simpler and clearer. Don't screw with it. Just believe it.

Vivified means made alive. But it is not the making alive to mortality, as some were raised by Jesus during His time on earth. It is the making alive to immortality, which is exactly what happened to Christ, the Firstfruit. He is the living definition of vivification.

There are three vivification events. 1. "the Firstfruit, Christ" (v.23), 2. "those who are Christ's in His presence" (when He returns at the end of this present wicked eon, v.23), and 3. "thereafter the consummation" (v.24). Vivifications 2 and 3 will include all humanity. This leads us to the logical question, "When is the consummation?"

Following are the events of the consummation, which include the final vivification of humanity, which coincides with the abolition of death.

  • whenever [Christ] may be giving up the kingdom to His God and Father (v.24)
  • whenever [Christ] should be nullifying all sovereignty and all authority and power (v.24)
  • For [Christ] must be reigning until He should be placing all His enemies under His feet (v.25)
  • The last enemy is being abolished: death (v.26)
  • He subjects all (except God) under His feet (v.27)
  • whenever all may be subjected to Him, then the Son Himself also shall be subjected to Him Who subjects all to Him (v.28)
  • God may be All in all (v.28)

So, the answer to the question, "When will the second death be abolished?" is "at the consummation." The events of the consummation we just bulleted will occur at the end of eon 5, the new heaven and new earth eon. See The Eonian Times Chart.
 
Though we are enduring wickedness in this current wicked eon, we are all in God's hands. And, at the consummation of the eons, and beyond, we will all still be in His hands. He will be "All in all," and none will be damned to any of the mythical Christian hells.
 

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