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An Answer To Some Questions
'The Bible Versus the Traditional View of Hell' (PART 2)

The concept that hades was a place divided into two compartments, one of suffering for the wicked and the other of bliss for the rigtheous, was a Jewish belief that had developed during the intertestamental period, the period of time in between when the Old and New Testaments were written. Thus, this particular view of hades was not canonical, that is it was not something that God Himself had revealed to the Jews through Scripture. There is no evidence in Scripture that hades is a place where the wicked suffer while awaiting final judgment in gehenna (the Lake of Fire). Such a concept of hades developed as a result of ancient Greek influences on Jewish thinking about the nature of the soul.

In the parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus, Jesus was simply borrowing this popular Jewish folklore of hades to use as an illustration to make a point to the pharisees and religious leaders of His day, but He was not necessarily endorsing the folklore as being doctrinally valid or correct. There are various passages in the Old Testament, such as in Psalms, that tell us that there is no consciousness in sheol (the Hebrew equivalent of hades in the Old Testament).

Some argue that the story of the Rich Man and Lazarus is not a parable because Jesus did not formally introduce it as a parable. But, Jesus did not always formally introduce His stories as parables, and there are various examples of that in the Gospels. Now, it is true that in His parables Jesus used things that actually existed to fill in for illustrations and figures, but in the particular case of the parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus the Lord used a popular existing Jewish myth about hades for the purposes of constructing a story.

Christian pastor and teacher Al Maxey makes some interesting comments concerning the parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus:
"In the story, then, of the rich man and Lazarus, Jesus has put them down (the pharisees and religious rulers) with one of their own superstitions. ... He used their own ideas to condemn them. ... It is simply a case of taking what others believe, practice, or say, and using it to condemn them" (Sidney Hatch, Daring To Differ: Adventures in Conditional Immortality, p. 91). "Since the elements of the story are taken from the Pharisees' own traditions, they are judged out of their own mouths" (ibid, p. 92).
It should be noted that the apostle Paul employed a similar device when he sought to impress upon certain Corinthian brethren the truth regarding the resurrection, and spoke of their practice of baptism for the dead. By speaking of this practice in his own teaching, and by not condemning it, Paul was certainly not thereby endorsing it. Rather, he merely used a practice then current among certain readers, to whom he was addressing his remarks, to drive home an eternal truth to their hearts and minds (1 Corinthians 15:29).
Another similar situation occurs in John 9:1-3. With regard to a man born blind, the disciples asked Jesus, "Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he should be born blind?" Some of the Jews (thanks to Hellenistic influence on Jewish theology with regard to the pagan doctrines of the preexistence & immortality of souls) believed souls existed prior to their being placed in a physical body at birth. Thus, these preexistent souls could sin during this prior life, for which they would be punished during the present life (possibly by being born with some infirmity or deformity). Oddly enough, Jesus did not speak out against this pagan notion, but merely instructed His disciples that neither this man nor his parents had sinned so as to cause Him to be born blind. Contrary to what some might think, Jesus did not go around debunking every Jewish or pagan myth that had arisen in their theology due to pagan influence .... Indeed, He at times seems to have used them in His dialogue with such persons to convey deeper eternal realities. This is exactly what I believe is being done with the parable of the rich man and the poor beggar.
A far more important reason for regarding the story of the rich man and Lazarus as figurative rather than literal/historical, however, is the obvious conflict with the inspired Scriptures that occurs when it is regarded as an actual account of real people and real events. These, in my estimation, are extremely serious contradictions with revealed Truth"(Al Maxey's website may be accessed at <!-- w --><a class="postlink" href=""></a><!-- w -->).
Although eternal life in Scripture means more than just eternal existence, it must, at least, include eternal existence. Eternal life comes as a package which includes endless glory, honor, joy, and bliss. The eternal punishment of the wicked will be just the opposite, the loss, the eternal and irrevocable loss of eternal existence along with its glory, honor, bliss, and joy. Because Jesus Christ paid the penalty for our sins God (the Father) can be just in forgiving our sins and granting us immortality and eternal life when we genuinely repent and put our faith and trust in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. That is why the Bible says that Jesus Christ "hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel" (2 Timothy 1:10). The Bible further says in John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish (be eternally destroyed), but have everlasting life (immortality with eternal glory and honor, cf. Romans 2:7)."
Again, the crux of the issue revolves around whether or not all humans will be immortal. In Genesis 2:17 God told Adam not to eat the fruit of a certain tree (the tree of the knowledge of good and evil) and God also told Adam that if he did eat of it he would die on that day. Specifically, God said to Adam, "For in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die." But the Biblical record shows that Adam did not physically die on the very day he disobeyed God and ate of the forbidden fruit. Because Adam did not physically die on the very day that he disobeyed God many Christians think that God was referring to spiritual death and not physical death.

However, in the original Hebrew, in which the Old Testament was written, the grammatical tense of the word "die" in Genesis 2:17 is in the imperfect mood. The imperfect mood denotes a process. Thus, what God was actually saying to Adam is that he would start dying on the day he ate the forbidden fruit. The literal translation from the Hebrew of what God said to Adam is: "Dying you will die." God was not, therefore, referring to spiritual death but to physical death. The fact that God later prevented Adam and Eve from having access to the tree of life (Genesis 3:22-24) so that they would not live eternally proves that God was referring to physical death and not spiritual death. The penalty for sin, then, is the death of both soul and body so that man will not live forever in sin. A holy God will not allow men who are created in His image to exist in sin for eternity! This contradicts the traditional doctrine or teaching of hell, taught in most churches, that the wicked will have an eternal body and soul which will burn forever in the flames of hell.

Evangelist John L. Bray gives an interesting commentary on this phrase: "that in the day thou doeth such and such, thou shalt surely die," is an idiom understood by the Hebrew people, and it meant "in the day you do such and such, know for certain that you will die." The day the action took place determined what would result later; it was settled (emphasis mine) on the day the action took place."

"When God said to Adam, 'For in the day that thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die (Genesis 2:17), He meant that on the very day that Adam committed that first act of disobedience, on that day his death was certain, regardless of how long it was until he actually died." Evangelist Bray points out that it is with this meaning that the phrase is used in other parts of Scripture such as when King Solomon told Shimei (his father David's old adversary) "to build a house in Jerusalem and to live there and not to go anywhere else, but to stay there. He (Solomon) said, 'For it shall be, that on the day thou goest out, and passest over the brook Kidron, thou shalt know for certain that thou shalt surely die' (1 Kings 2:37)." The biblical record shows that Shimei did disobey Solomon and that Solomon did put him to death, although Shimei's death did not happen on that very day he disobeyed Solomon.

Another passage in Scripture which is used (or I should say misused) to support the traditional teaching of hell is Daniel 12:2. GJ Griz in commenting on Daniel 12:2 (my comments and interpretations are in brackets) says, "Gabriel tells Daniel that some will awaken to shame and everlasting contempt. The Hebrew word for 'contempt' [or "disgust"] in Daniel 12:2 also appears in Isaiah 66:24 [where the word is used in the context of disgust expressed by onlookers as they view the dead bodies or corpses of those slain in battle Thus, this verse probably expresses how the faithful will look upon the corpses of the wicked in that final day of judgement]. Isaiah says abhorrence while Daniel says contempt. [In any case, it is the word "everlasting" that is at issue here]. The Hebrew word 'owlam' is translated 'everlasting' in Daniel 12:2. In many other passages it does not mean throughout eternity [but rather the entire age or period of something that is temporal and not permanent]. The wicked will be completely destroyed! Although there will always be a general memory of the wicked and their end (after all the record of Scripture will exist for eternity), what there will no longer be is anymore fearful memory and experience of the pain, oppression, and injustice of the wicked, for they will be no more.

Why does 1 Corinthians 1:18 use the present tense for the word "perish" in describing those who ultimately reject the Gospel? If their time to perish is in the future, on Judgment Day, why is the present tense used. The word "perish" is in the present tense because those who ultimately reject the Gospel are in a sense already perishing (dying) physically under the sentence of death until one day they will permanently perish (or die). Their permanent death will not occur until after they are resurrected from their earthly death to face final judgment. Of course, it is true that believers in this life are also physically dying (perishing) daily as the Apostle Paul says in 2 Corinthians 4:16 where concerning believers Paul says that even though the outward man is perishing the inward man is being renewed daily. In the context of believers, however, their perishing is only temporary because it will not ultimately end in permanent physical death but instead in glorious physical resurrection to immortality and eternal life.

Many Christians find it difficult to believe that the soul as well as the body can die. The soul, they say, can live on and be conscious even after the body decays into the dust. Christians generally believe that Jesus confirmed the existence of consciousness in hades because of what He said to the repentant thief who also was dying on a cross beside Him. But it must be kept in mind that in the Greek manuscripts of the New Testament there were no punctuation marks such as commas. The punctuation marks found in our English Bibles, for example, were provided by the translators. So depending upon where the comma actually is in a sentence can change the entire meaning of the sentence.
The passage in Luke 23:43 of the English Bible is translated with the comma before the word "today" so that Jesus is saying to the repentant thief, "Verily I say unto thee, today shalt thou be with Me in paradise." It gives the meaning that the thief would join Jesus in paradise on that very day. But what if the comma in the sentence is placed after the word "today." Then the sentence that Jesus said would read, "Verily I say unto thee today, thou shalt be with Me in paradise." It changes the entire meaning of the sentence. Then Jesus is not necessarily saying that the repentant thief would join Him in paradise on that very day. The Bible repeatedly refers to Christians who had died as being "asleep" indicating that their death is only temporary since they will one day be resurrected to immortality and eternal life.

But if there is no consciousness for the dead until Resurrection Day why did the Apostle Paul say that he desires "to depart, and to be present with Christ" (Philippians 1:23). However, in 2 Corinthians 5 Paul defines that to be absent from the body and present with the Lord means to be clothed in our resurrected bodies. Paul didn't mind death because he knew that the next conscious thing that he would experience after death would be joyful and perfect eternal fellowship with Christ at the Resurection. This is why the early Christians thought so much about the meaning of Easter and its resurrection significance. If the early Christians believed that they would be in the presence of Christ immediately after death, as most Christians believe today, then the coming of Christ again on Resurrecton Day would not have had as much meaning or value for them. But, in any case, even if the soul did survive the death of the body this would still not necessarily mean that the soul is immortal.

In regard to the last book of the Bible, the book of Revelation, and its contents regarding the final judgment several important points need to be kept in mind for a proper interpretation of this most difficult-to-interpret book of the Bible.

The first point to realize is that Revelation is a book filled with symbolic language, and, therefore, the book is not to be interpreted literally. The book itself tells us not to interpret it literally. In the very first verse of the very first chapter we read, "The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God (the Father) gave unto Him, to show unto His servants things which must shortly come to pass; and He sent and signified it by His angel unto His servant John" (Revelation 1:1). The word "signified" in the passage comes from a Greek word meaning "signs" or "symbols."

Much of the symbolism in Revelation can be decoded by examining how these symbols are used in other parts of Scripture, particularly in the Old Testament. The Old Testament book of Daniel is very valuable for this purpose because many of the prophecies in the book of Daniel overlap with those found in the book of Revelation. For example, the "beast" mentioned in the book of Daniel represents a great political power, or empire, or kingdom. This same figure of the beast is used in Revelation. From the context and language of Revelation we can surmise that the figures of the beast and the false prophet are symbolic of political power and apostate religious beguilement. The point is that the beast and false prophet are not literal individuals or persons, and, therefore, when they are eventually cast into the Lake of Fire we must not think that they are experiencing conscious torment. As we shall see later, the Lake of Fire in Revelation stands for annihilation. If that is so then why does Revelation 20:10 say that the beast and the false prophet are in the Lake of Fire when the Devil is finally cast in there after a thousand years? The word "are" is not found in the ancient Greek manuscripts of the New Testament but, instead, the word was inserted by English translators. That is why the word "are" is in italics in the King James Version. Words in italics in the King James Version indicate that the words were supplied by the translators. So, we can just as easily translate the passage to mean that the Devil was cast into the Lake of Fire where the beast and false prophet were. In fact, the Greek word for "are" (eisi) can be translated as: are, be, were, etc. But, even if we grant the use of the word "are" the verse can still be interpreted to mean that the beast and false prophet continued to remain in a state of annihilation at the time the Devil was cast into the Lake.

That the Lake of Fire stands for annihilation is indisputable because Revelation 20:14 states, unequivocally, that the Lake of Fire is the second death. What is the second death? Well, it is certainly not spiritual death because those cast into the Lake of Fire (i.e the wicked on judgment day) were already spiritually dead. The difference between the first death and the second death is that the first death is temporary since everyone, the righteous and the wicked, will be resurrected in the Last Day to face final judgment. The book of Daniel tells us that the righteous and the wicked will all be resurrected on the same day. The second death, on the other hand, is eternal (or permanent) with no resurrection to follow. Only the wicked will experience the second death. It is not the punishing which is eternal but rather the punishment which is the eternal and permanent cessation of being. The wicked will experience the second death after they suffer consciously for their individual guilt and sins.

As for phrases used in the Bible in regard to the end of the wicked that they will go to a place "where their worm dieth not, and where the fire is not quenched" these are two different ways of saying the same thing, that these agents of destruction, the fire and the worm, will not cease until they have done their work of complete and total destruction.

Contrary to popular belief and interpretation the phrase in Scripture "where their worm dieth not" is not a reference to the undying human soul or conscience. We have already seen statements in Scripture that God will destroy, not preserve or keep alive, the bodies and souls of the wicked in the Day of Judgment. The worm and fire were figures that people in Jesus' time could readily identify and understand because in that time the dead bodies of those who suffered dishonor in society were thrown into a valley where fire and worms devoured these bodies.

Phrases such as "gnashing of teeth" used in Scrpture to describe the end of the wicked have also been misinterpreted. Wherever Scripture uses "gnashing of teeth" such as in Acts 7 it is always in the context of the wicked being angry or jealous of the righteous. In the Day of Judgment when the wicked see the ultimate blessed and happy state of the righteous they will, indeed, weep, wail, and gnash their teeth as they realize what they have lost and as they are finally destroyed and cease to exist forever. The weeping and wailing will be similar to the bitter weeping that Esau, in the Old Testament, experienced when he realized what he lost by selling his birthright and inheritance to Jacob for a mess of porridge. So, too, the wicked in hell will weep and wail bitterly, even while they are being destroyed, when they realize what happiness and bliss of heaven they had given up because they chose to live their lives on earth for only money and themselves.

It may surprise many to know that the Bible teaches animals as having souls. In the Old Testament, for example, the Hebrew word for "soul" ("nephesh") is used for both animal and man. For example, Genesis 1:21 says: "And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth ..." The words "living creature" are from the Hebrew words "nephesh chaiyah". The same Hebrew words are used in Genesis 2:7 where we read concerning the creation of man that after God had created man from the dust of the earth He then breathed into man the breath of life and man became a "living soul" ("nephesh chaiyah"). The breath of life itself was not the soul, but, rather, Scripture teaches that man became a living soul as the result of God breathing into him the breath of life. The definition of "soul" actually varies according to the context of Scripture. The basic meaning of "soul" in Scripture refers to the mind or conscious nature in animals and man, but the word also is used specifically in various passages of Scripture in reference to the will, thoughts, emotions, and affections. The New Testament Greek word for "soul" is "psuche" and it is equivalent in meaning to the Old Testament word "nephesh". The soul may very well be physical but yet distinct from the rest of the body. If the soul is physical then it is distinct from all other forms of non-conscious matter or energy. The Scriptures teach that both humans and animals are constituted with spirit (a life-giving force), soul, and body. Even if the soul isn't physical it would not necessarily mean that soul is immortal. Immortality must be given by God Who alone is the ultimate Source and Sustainer of all things. It is very humbling to realize that we humans were created as mortal as the animals. Only those who have put their faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior who will ultimately have immortality of soul and body on Resurrection Day.

Many of the early Protestant Reformers, including Martin Luther, held to the view that man, by nature, is entirely motal (including the soul), but the great Reformer John Calvin opposed this view and specifically wrote against it and insisted that all of the Reformers present a united front. An excellent Internet site containing information on all of this is "Champions of Conditional Immortality In History".
The question naturally arises whether the teaching of eternal annihilation would be an effective deterrent to sin as in contrast to the teaching of eternal suffering. Here, of course, we are entering into philosophy and human reasoning rather than Scripture alone.
Nevertheless, let us briefly talk philosophy. First, let it be said that God is more concerned about a person doing what is right because he or she genuinely wants to rather than just because of punishment alone. A person's reasons for repentance should include genuine sorrow over sin. In fact, in contrast to fear, the Bible teaches that the goodness of God is meant to lead people to repentance! (Romans 2:4).

Also, the teaching of eternal suffering will never be an effective deterrent to sin if people do not believe that God would really inflict such a thing. They believe that after seeing souls suffer for a long time God would change His mind and admit them into heaven after all.

On the other hand, the prospect that those who go to hell will suffer for their sins and then be eternally destroyed so that they do not exist anymore is far more believable, and, therefore, a far more effective deterrent to sin. If people are convinced that there really is an eternity of bliss and joy to lose that in itself is a powerful thought and deterrent to sin, whatever they might or might not believe about eternal suffering.

Finally, whether or not people genuinely repent at least they can respect God's justice and character if His eternal punishment does not consist of eternally tormenting those who go to hell. Such respect alone brings God great honor and glory.

What about those who are unsaved but who are suffering and are in misery in this life? If the ultimate and eternal annihilation, or destruction, of soul and body of the unsaved is true, then isn't the eternal loss of life for such people really a reward since they will no longer exist in misery?
Well, let's look at another example. There are some individuals in society who having been released from prison cannot or will not become adjusted to civilian life. Some of these persons have been known to commit crimes again so that they may go back to prison where they feel life would be better. Does this then mean that prison is no longer punishment for these people? Of course, not! So, too, it does not mean that eternal literal destruction of soul and body is not punishment simply because it is a better state than eternal life in misery.
From God's perspective (the only perspective that counts) life is a gift and meant to exist only when in harmony with His will. A thrice holy God will not allow sin to exist for eternity by keeping sinners alive for eternity. God has ordained temporary existence of sin and the life of the sinner for various purposes, but it is not in His eternal and ultimate purpose to do so.
What is punishment and not punishment is ultimately from God's perspective and view, not what we necessarily think. I may hit my toe accidentally against the leg of a table and suffer terrible pain, but having such pain does not necessarily mean I am in a state of punishment. Conversely, the lack of pain does not necessarily mean absence of punishment. For example, when a murderer receives the death penalty from society he or she no longer expereinces pain, at least not from society. Does this then mean that society did not punish the murderer since the murderer having died no longer experiences anymore pain inflicted by society? The theological lesson to learn from all this is that it is God's Word that is to be our ultimate authority on the issue of punishment and not our philosophy!
Christians throughout history, regardless of denomination, have always agreed on the essential (core), or primary, doctrines of Christianity, especially regarding the Person and redemptive work of Jesus Christ. Where Christians have had differences in beliefs such differences have been in matters of secondary doctrine. What has been discussed in this essay, as important as it may be, is a matter of secondary doctrine. Some cults and non-Christian religions may have some correct secondary doctrines, but their primary doctrines about God and, specifically, the Person and work of Jesus Christ are wrong and incorrect.
Finally, one very important question arises that needs to be answered. If Jesus Christ was truly God how then could He completely die (in body and soul) since the Scriptures teach that God is immutable (unchanging). In answer to this question it is important to understand that everything about God, including His immutability and His very existence itself, is dependent upon His moral nature. God's immutability is conditional upon His moral nature. In fact, it would be theologically safe to say that the only thing about God that cannot change at all is His moral nature. Thus, it is only God's moral nature which is truly unconditionally immutable. In the context of Scripture, when God says "I am the Lord. I change not" (Malachi 3:6) it is in reference to His moral being and nature. Whatever God can do or cannot do is governed by His moral constitution or nature. For example, the Scripture says in Hebrews 6:18 that it is impossible for God to lie. Thus, when Scripture tells us elsewhere that with God all things are possible it must be understood from the context of comparing Scripture with Scripture that only all things are possible with God which are not contradictory to His moral nature. In other words, God is only as immutable as His moral nature allows Him to be. What does all this mean? It means that when God the Son (Jesus Christ) took the legal guilt and liability for our sins on the Cross then His divine moral nature required that He die since the penalty for sin is death. As He had to be true to His moral nature the Son gave up His life. It is precisely because of the immutability of His moral nature that Christ (Who is God) died when He took the guilt of our sins! Because He was God Christ's death had infinite value so that it was not necessary for Him to remain dead for eternity in order for His death to satisfy the full penalty for our sins.
However, although Jesus was God, if He had truly died completely (body and soul), how could He have raised His own body from the grave as He said He would. There are two possible answers. One is that when His soul was given back its life Christ then entered His own body and raised it up from the grave. The other possible answer is in understanding what Jesus said about His authority over His own life and death. Jesus said that the Father had given to Him authority to lay down His life and to have His life raised from the dead (John 10:11-18). Shortly before Jesus died He exercised this authority by entrusting to His Father His spirit (not the Holy Spirit in this case but rather the spirit which is the principle of life, the breath of life). Remember His words on the Cross, "Father into Thy hands I commend My spirit" (Luke 23:46). By doing this He gave authority for death to overtake Him on account of our sins for which He died but He also had delegated His right and authority over His own life to the Father to raise Him up from the dead. In this way Jesus was very much responsible for both His own death and resurrection. What great love and condescension the Son of God subjected Himself to on our behalf! The reader is urged to examine in more detail the Biblical fact of Christ's Godhood and deity in the author's essay The Deity of Jesus Christ Explained and Defended.

For more comprehensive and further reading on the subject of conditional immortality the reader is urged to obtain a copy of Edward Fudge's excellent book 'The Fire That Consumes'. The book is foreworded by the great evangelical scholar F.F.Bruce.
This answers nothing! You cannot answer my questions to you, Albion. All you can do is avoid them and quote someone else's views about a doctrine that cuts right across your professed belief in the absolute love & compassion of God.

Are we supposed to be impressed by this?

Same old worn out Baptist rhetoric, say something to ATTACK THE PERSON instead of REALLY SPEAKING TO THE QUESTION!

Come on Bauscher, I'm from the SOUTH, I've played "the Baptist game" BEFORE.

Face it, your just a MEAN AND ANGRY PERSON, and so is YOUR GOD!


gbausc Wrote:This answers nothing! You cannot answer my questions to you, Albion. All you can do is avoid them and quote someone else's views about a doctrine that cuts right across your professed belief in the absolute love & compassion of God.

Are we supposed to be impressed by this?

One last post here.

This dialogue is totally unproductive. It's negative, and I'm finally DONE.

This is my very last post on this particular subject.

Then I shall respond with The Peshitta reading of a verse of scripture you posted in your pasted response about soul sleep and "conditional immortality".

You posted:
Quote:The passage in Luke 23:43 of the English Bible is translated with the comma before the word "today" so that Jesus is saying to the repentant thief, "Verily I say unto thee, today shalt thou be with Me in paradise." It gives the meaning that the thief would join Jesus in paradise on that very day. But what if the comma in the sentence is placed after the word "today." Then the sentence that Jesus said would read, "Verily I say unto thee today, thou shalt be with Me in paradise." It changes the entire meaning of the sentence. Then Jesus is not necessarily saying that the repentant thief would join Him in paradise on that very day. The Bible repeatedly refers to Christians who had died as being "asleep" indicating that their death is only temporary since they will one day be resurrected to immortality and eternal life.

That is The Jehovah's Witnesses' translation of Luke 23:43, which makes our Lord out to make the insipid statement: "Verily I say unto thee today, thou shalt be with Me in paradise." As if the thief would need to be informed that He was speaking to him on that very day! The Aramaic does not allow for that strange interpretation. It has, "aoydrpb awht yme anmwyd Kl ana rma Nyma ewsy hl rma" -"Yeshua said to him:'Truly I say to you,that today you shall be with Me in Paradise.' " The Greek could be tortured to state the nonsense you have posted. Do you see that bold d in the Aramaic? It means "that". It can also signify that a quotation follows. It is attached to the beginning of "Yawmana"- "Today". The Peshitta text cannot be made out to mean what the JW's have translated. Yeshua said, "Today you shall be with me in Paradise." End of story.

If I am mean, then so be it, but I am no mean translator. <!-- sWink --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/wink1.gif" alt="Wink" title="Wink" /><!-- sWink -->

So, which is it, Albion? Do you hold to the Greek and a stupid statement being put into God's mouth, or to the clear and simple reading of the Peshitta text?

And I am curious. How is belief in universal salvation meaner than believing God will burn up sinners into ashes? <!-- s:whaasup: --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/whaasup.gif" alt=":whaasup:" title="Whaasup" /><!-- s:whaasup: -->

That one Peshitta verse shoots the soul sleep theory all to Gehenna.

Of course, I'll understand if you don't respond to this. So will everyone else on the board.

Big, Mean & Angry Dave <!-- s:angry: --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/angry.gif" alt=":angry:" title="Angry" /><!-- s:angry: -->

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