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Eternal Conscious Hell Fire is completely Justified

Discussion in 'Christian Apologetics' started by gradyll, May 9, 2019.

  1. no hell does not exist

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  2. no it just means death

    20.0%
  3. it means separation from God, not eternal hell fire

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  4. it means what it says, eternal conscious hell fire.

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  1. gradyll

    gradyll In the grip of grace

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    yes see, when He became a living soul this was an event, not a time. See when this happened he was placed in eternity. Yes if you think about eternity, look at it like a time line that goes to the past for ever and to the future forever. when you are created, you are put on the time line. That is only how we can percieve eternity. But it is much different eternity is outside of time all together. But just as you can place a person on a time line in an infinite line of time, so too can God place someone in eternity at an event of creation. So this is not a contradiction at all to my view.
     
  2. holo

    holo former Christian

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    It certainly means there is choice involved, but the question is whether or not that choice was truly free.

    I think that in a biblical worldview, it's hard to see how God's will can ultimately be done if he doesn't decide which actions people take. He wouldn't have to "force" anyone in the sense that he makes them do something against their own will, but our will is the product of our upbringing, genes, culture, history etc etc. If God is in fact God, then absolutely everything is according to his will. Even if man seems to revolt "against" God, it would still be his will that it happens (like when God hardened Pharaoh's heart). It's like the old question, can God create a rock so big he himself cannot lift it? In other words, is God so almighty that he can truly take away his own power? The bible stories look pretty different when you read them in that light, rather than presupposing we have free will.
     
  3. A_Thinker

    A_Thinker Well-Known Member Supporter

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    So ... your position is that Adam (who became a soul six days after God began His creation work) ... was created before time began ?
     
  4. mmksparbud

    mmksparbud Well-Known Member

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    Sorry---not stated in scripture--your own idea. No one goes immediately to heaven or hell---we are as Jesus said---sleeping--until the resurrection.
    Joh_11:11 These things said he: and after that he saith unto them, Our friend Lazarus sleepeth; but I go, that I may awake him out of sleep.
    Luk_8:52 And all wept, and bewailed her: but he said, Weep not; she is not dead, but sleepeth.

    Makes no sense to immediately go to heaven or hell---Jesus says when He comes--the saved are not permanently dead---we sleep until the resurrections.

    Rev_22:12 And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.

    Our reward is eternal life and we get it at His return. Jesus is our High Priest now as such He is presenting His shed blood for our sins and writing our names in the book of life. When He is done He will say:
    Rev_21:6 And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.

    At that point---everyone's decision will have been made

    Rev_22:11 He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still.

    We do not get our reward until He returns---otherwise why bother coming back---He doesn't need our bodies if we are already in heaven.

    The living wicked are destroyed at His coming--the wicked dead remain dead until after the 1000 years then they are resurrected to face their judgement. Why should the wicked face a judgement if they are already in hell?---You think God is going to change His mind?

    Rev_20:5 But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection.

    You've got everybody get their reward at death--for life or eternal death--at death. The saved get theirs at the resurrection, the lost after the 1000 years.
     
  5. mmksparbud

    mmksparbud Well-Known Member

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    Please post the verses that state this! Otherwise---it is just your idea not a biblically supported one.
     
  6. gradyll

    gradyll In the grip of grace

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    yes he was put into eternity at day six. Time was already created in earlier days. Like I said you can place a person into eternity at an event period, which would be creation, after time had began.
     
  7. gradyll

    gradyll In the grip of grace

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    use the Bible to quote science? The Bible sir is not a scientific textbook. The Bible does not talk about the law of gravity either. It does not mean that you are not tied to the earth, and not floating in space. The Bible was written for a purpose to relay salvation terms, and attributes of God, but not science. Yes there are some science within the Bible but it is usually an interpretation of the text. For example time, space, and mass the three elements of the time space continuum were created in the first few days, but it does not state it as a scientific thing.
     
  8. Verv

    Verv Senior Veteran

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    But I am from the Hayek school of thought at least when it comes to defining a word. Freedom essentially means liberty, and freedom from merely means not having something around you. A man in Turkmenistan can be said to be free from jail or free from hunger, but in no other way is he meaningfully free.

    We are talking about the will -- the color of thought, the ability to choose, not the lingual variant where we talk about being unburdened by as being free from something.

    Freedom doesn't mean freedom from consequences.

    And if God wanted us to have language, he would have had us born speaking a language, right?

    If God would have wanted us to know Him, He would've had us born Knowing Him, and Jesus would be everyone's primary caregiver.


    Why is it the case that God's plan has to be that everyone is born sinless?

    ... And why do you think the simple, end goal is sinlessness and not praising God through action and deed?


    The punishment is not for sinning -- for, if the punishment was for sin alone, why would all of it be erasable through repentance?

    The punishment is moreso for non-repentance (via literal non-repentance or repetitious sin, e.g., improper metanoia) and for not desiring communion with God. Of course, this aspect can become a little bit difficult because it is easy to make a category here in this discussion.
     
  9. Verv

    Verv Senior Veteran

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    I. Freedom is the ability to choose between right and wrong independently; it is basically the ability to follow your will, and not the will of another, and to also have, within your will, a capacity for a great variety of choices.

    II. In the internal logic of Christianity, there is a reward given to the innocent and to those who trust in God, correct? There's an awfully huge amount of text devoted to restoration of justice -- justice to widows, the meek inheriting the earth, etc.

    Perhaps one of the conclusions that we have to come to is that God loves justice.

    Moreover, when we believe that the wrongs will be righted in the end, and that justice will be dispensed at the final judgment, the temporary suffering that we go through now is pretty much nothing in the face of an eternity with God.

    There's also a lot of text and sayings of Saints dedicated to the notion that our suffering brings about righteousness. I recently head about an American monk who had been being accused of all manner of wrongdoing and persecuted due to church politics, but his only response was to privately say to someone that great good is being done through these vicious rumors because this suffering is making up for a great deal of sin that he has committed before, humbling him, and driving him further toward God.

    It is an interesting way to think of it, IMO.

    The Orthodox view of man is that he is going for theosis which is a very difficult concept, IMO, but it basically means becoming godly and godlike through moral perfection & the grace of God. There's a general belief that we are working to overcome our spiritual weaknesses and to truly "put on Christ," and that it is a very long process. A lot of people also believe that the process is a rather beautiful one, and it is not perfected until we are in heaven. Only the highest Saints on earth have gotten to the upper parts of the 'ladder' of divine ascent, you could say.

    We also do believe that some men will go to hell, and we reject universalism. So, in my statement, I was also very much hinting that the goal of creation is not for all men to be free of sin. Indeed, not even the saved men will be free from sin.

    Some of our greatest Saints, like St. Mary of Egypt, are remembered and defined by their struggles against sin.

    This is an absolutely amazing area of debate, my friend.

    Orthodoxy has a lot of debates within it... There was even a Patriarch who believed very much in the predestination of souls. I once heard my Bishop remark that free will was lost in the Garden of Eden, and I am not sure what he meant by this -- whether it was a broad statement where man was now dominated by selfish desires to sin, or whether it was a more narrow meaning that really meant that free will is gone (or largely gone) among us and that we are destiend to what we are doing, and there are those among us who are the "elect," and those who are actually destined to damnation (I believe some people call this Hyper-Calvinism).

    I know that the official sounding position I most normally hear is something like things are foreknown but they were not fore-ordained by God, and we simply make a choice that God knew ahead of time, which I think is a form of compatibalism. St. Basil the Great said that God foresees and provides for everything.

    Here is some amazing stuff that argues why Free Will exists that I lifted from a website that lifted from the Holy Fathers:

    An Introduction to the Orthodox Christian Understanding of Free Will

    Honestly, this sort of topic gets my head spinning quickly, so I will not try to elaborate at all. When it comes to very difficult theological topics like this, it is best to let the Saints speak and to only try to explain a little where we can.
     
  10. Ken-1122

    Ken-1122 Newbie

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    If man were born morally perfect like God; in a way that he would choose not to sin, he would be as free as God is.

    There is nothing about the way we are born that prevents us from eventually learning language. Can the same be said about Sin?

    Again; there is nothing about the way we are born that prevents us from knowing Jesus. Can the same be said about sin?

    Because of his punishment for sin.

    According to Matthew 7:21-23, a lot of people praising God through action and deed will still go to hell due to sin

    So as long as long as you desire communion with God, you’re all good regardless of sin? If that’s the case, nobody goes to hell.
     
  11. Verv

    Verv Senior Veteran

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    Was man brought into existence to be morally perfect like God, or was he brought into existence to glorify God?

    In Orthodoxy, we believe that theosis is the end goal, and that, in heaven, we will seek a greater union with God through becoming like Him through grace, and thus acquire sinlessness.

    So, just as a child learns a language eventually, the Saint eventually can attain sinlessness in heaven through the grace of God.

    Right, here is where we can find a potential category error due to the poverty of language.

    Non-repentance is a sin; however, it is the particular sin of being unrepentant that results in damnation for all of the other sins that have been committed along with it. St. Mary of Egypt was a grave sinner for some period of her life, but she was not sent to hell because of her many sins. Because she repented, she was saved.

    So, in a sense, not all sin is punished with hell in the least.

    Every Christian is a sinner. Yet, they do not go to hell for these sins.

    A lot of people praising God without proper motivation and proper desire for communion, with a great ignorance of God's will, and who do it for self-aggrandizement or for self-rightoeusness, with pride and ego shall face that, yes.

    But these people would be not Christians in Good Faith.

    I think this would be a complicated discussion, though, and it would require for me to become very judgmental and strict in how I am appraising other Christians, and that would be uncomfortable.

    That'd be incorrect.

    Does everybody actually yearn for communion with God as an active characteristic, and consider God in their actions? It could even be argued that many Christians in great standing are failing to do this, and they struggle to put God into their considerations for half of the things they are doing.

    A passive desire to go to Heaven is present in everyone.

    Perhaps an abstract recognition that communion with God would be good is in many people's minds.

    But, what we are talking about is people yearning an dstriving to be with God, and being repentant.
     
  12. Ken-1122

    Ken-1122 Newbie

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    I don’t know what your beliefs are; obviously I don’t share them, I was just saying being morally perfect does not mean you can’t be free.

    What about those who don’t make it to Heaven?

    But because of sin, there are some people who will still go to Hell right? If we were made morally perfect from the start, nobody would have to go to Hell. Wouldn't that be better?
     
  13. Verv

    Verv Senior Veteran

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    We can all choose a variety of actions, right... And, sure, there are those whose choice of an action would be contrary to them. But this is not necessarily because their appetites are so radically different from those who make the evil choice -- it is simply because their moral values are higher than those who choose to do immoral things for their improper appetite, right?

    If you cannot choose to pursue your base appetite over doing the right thing, you are not free. You are programmed, right.

    Is a programmed thing morally perfect? Or is it closer to a computer program which lacks agency?

    I think a lot of our debate potentially hinges around this question.

    They go to hell.

    And, I once even met an Orthodox person who believed that the bulk of people actually went into limbo and then are destroyed as opposed to going into hell necessarily, and that only those who knew (e.g., those who knew Christ and turned their back on Him) are actually qualified to go into hell.

    But that is not my belief... but I have heard that this is the belief of even St. Justin Martyr.

    I try to be flexible and accommodating and wrote that to inform you that there is the potential for nuance.

    They would not be humans in that case because they would not have free will.
     
  14. Ken-1122

    Ken-1122 Newbie

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    If you are morally perfect, your base appetite IS doing the right thing. You would have to be programmed to do something wrong.

    If they were morally perfect, they wouldn't have to go to Hell.

    If God can be morally perfect while having free will, so can humans.
     
  15. Verv

    Verv Senior Veteran

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    God is morally perfect because He is Omniscient, and thus has supreme wisdom. He is also omnipotent, and transcorporeal, meaning that He is not all powerful and not subject to the flesh. He also transcends time.

    The basis for His moral perfection is beyond anything that we have... And, it is only with this basis that one can actually obtain moral perfection.

    Whereas, for humans to be perfect, who have flawed appetites and desires because of our limitations, we would have to be completely programmed and have massive aspects of our will entirely removed.

    We would be good yet be incapable of good because we would be programmed.

    A computer program is not morally perfect because it does not sin. It is amoral because it does not have a moral capacity.
     
  16. holo

    holo former Christian

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    Well, you could say that even following the will of another would still be your choice. If someone points a gun at your head and threatening you to do something, you're still the one making the choice to comply or not. It wouldn't really make sense to say your will wasn't free just because your choice was influenced by something outside yourself. Because that's the thing I can't reconcile with "free" will: you don't make choices out of thin air. There will always be a reason you do something, and that reason has its own reason and so forth. We'll say an alcoholic doesn't have truly free will (when it comes to drinking) because of his addiction/sickness - basically, we see the reasons why he does it. But is there really a fundamental difference between choosing to drink or choosing take a walk instead? Aren't they both expressions of the guy's will in that moment?

    Your will determines your choice. But what determines your will? Can you choose to prefer something?

    Basically, I don't see how the law of cause and effect allows for free will.

    I'm not so sure about that either :)
    I don't claim to have a perfect sense of justice, but I've got some of the basics down I guess, and choosing to create imperfect people and then judging them for being imperfect just doesn't compute with me. Also, justice isn't really justice if it's only applied to a few. And if I understand the Christian worldview (to the degree that there is a common one), the idea is that most will be judged according to their actions, while a few will get grace instead. Of course, if you believe in hell as eternal torment, nobody is getting any justice - it's either infinitely good or infinitely bad, none of which can be said to be justice.

    That's my hope too. That all of the suffering in the world will turn out to have a purpose, and that everybody will look back on this from some sort of heaven and agree that it was all worth it. That there's some unfathomable purpose to all of this, like when a baby has to take blood tests: as long as the baby is a baby it'll be impossible to understand the value of it, all you can do is try to comfort it.

    I've heard about that from time to time, that our suffering brings about righteousness. But it was my understanding of the gospel that it's Christ's suffering that did that. I know there are many ways to interpret scripture, but I have a hard time believing Paul and those guys meant Jesus paid for some of our sins but left a bit that we have to "make up for".

    Again, it's my understanding of the gospel that all believers are saints. I'm not sure that degrees of holiness is a biblical concept, but do correct me if I'm wrong.

    What do you believe hell is?

    I know right? :D
    Thanks for responding to these thoughts.

    I don't know how it can be logically possible to be almighty and not be responsible for what happens.

    Maybe we can say that God is responsible, but man is culpable. Like Paul said, God created some vessels for honour and some for dishonour. Maybe our problem is our sense of importance and entitlement.
     
  17. holo

    holo former Christian

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    Almost like, I dunno, a vessel for dishonour perhaps? :D
     
  18. Ken-1122

    Ken-1122 Newbie

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    What do you base that on? That is an awful large claim you are making; can you prove it? Or is this something you just made up.

    Will this be the case in Heaven? Will everybody be completely programmed and have massive aspects of their will completely removed in order to keep them morally perfect? Or will people in Heaven still have the option to sin.


    It would be far better to be made a robot, programed to do good, and have absolutely no free will for 80 years while on earth, and spend eternity in Heaven, than to be given free will for 80 years which leads to eternity in Hell.
     
  19. holo

    holo former Christian

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    That's a good point.
     
  20. Verv

    Verv Senior Veteran

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    (General note for others: I may not be very active today but I am glad to get in this reply.)

    I am an alcoholic -- I just finished a year sober, and I have gone back to drinking moderately (Yes, I know, that is probably a recipe for disaster). However, I do think that addicts & alcoholics have free will (I am open to the idea that there might be an absolutely extreme case where there isn't much in the way of free will)... It's simply a matter of them having disordered priorities.

    It is definitely true that we do not make choices out of thin air, and some are definitely born at a massive disadvantage, but I think it is not actually unique to have a lot of theological thoguths justifying the weaknesses of others.

    It's also partly why we are Christians... We believe that we are sinners, and we may not actually be able to perfectly fix ourselves, but that Christ will take away our sins and make us clean -- and even our future stumbles will be OK as long as we are repentant of them.

    I do believe in mercy.

    It is true that hell is eternal and that it comes off as lopsided. However, few people think about how lopsided heaven is: it is impossible for us to actually be justified by works because all of our works are as filthy rags before God ([bible]Isaiah 64:6[/bible]).

    In anothe rsense, it is not lopsided because on Earth we are building the character that will follow us into eternity. In an Orthodox description of hell I recently consulted they spoke about how the people in hell are there because they are not capable of the changes necessary to inherit the Kingdom of God.

    Thus, I think of hell as a choice that some of us make.

    This makes me think, though, of Romans 5:3-5:

    "More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us."

    Right -- every person who goes to Heaven is considered a Saint. The thief on the cross (properly known as 'the Good Thief') is a Saint. The only difference between St. Porphyrios and my grandmother, a strong Christian, is that we know St. Porphyrios has perofrmed miracles indicating that he made it into Heaven and looks over us even now, whereas there is not proof or recognition of my grandmother to be able to say she is a Saint, but I do believe she is a Saint in the sense that I believe she is in the Kingdom of God, right.

    So your interpretation is right -- and may you one day be a very fine Saint.

    "Hell is other people." Sartre -- just kidding.

    Hell begins after (or during) the Final Judgment when God appears as radiating light that burns away the impurities of those called to join Him in the Kingdom of God, and which is like a scourge of love unto those who have rejected God, which results in the creation of hell.

    It's possible to elaborate further on that, as I have seen some do, but the really important points are that

    - Hell is uncreated: it is the result of being in the presence of God's radiating light but having not desired communion with God.

    - Hell is eternal, just as heaven is.

    - We are the one's responsible for our entrance into hell through the rejection of God and no repentance for our sins.

    - From Luke 12: 47 “The servant who knows the master’s will and does not get ready or does not do what the master wants will be beaten with many blows. 48 But the one who does not know and does things deserving punishment will be beaten with few blows. From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked."

    So it is the case that people like me baptized into the Orthodox Church carry a large burden, and that is what I must be most concerned with in terms of sin. I have a lot of repenting and self-correction to engage in.

    It is also the case that those who are in worse circumstances than me will have a more lenient judgment.

    So, it is important to remember that when we think of hell.

    I cannot say who goes -- I can only tell you that a baptized Orthodox Christian actively repenting and pursuing the way of God is in position to enter the Kingdom of God, no matter what. That's what I know for sure. The rest, I do not know.


    That is an interesting passage about creation for honor and dishonor... I found this to go with it:

    "2 Timothy 2: 20 In a large house there are articles not only of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay; some are for special purposes and some for common use. 21 Those who cleanse themselves from the latter will be instruments for special purposes, made holy, useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work."

    I believe an element of choice definitely persists for everyone.
     
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