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Featured The Ghastly Eternal Torment Dogma

Discussion in 'Controversial Christian Theology' started by FineLinen, Jan 27, 2020.

  1. FineLinen

    FineLinen Senior Veteran Supporter

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    [Understanding the Foundations of Eternal Conscious Torment – Part One](Understanding the Foundations of Eternal Conscious Torment – Part One)

    [Understanding the Foundations of Eternal Conscious Torment – Part Two](Understanding the Foundations of Eternal Conscious Torment – Part Two)

    [Understanding the Foundations of Eternal Conscious Torment – Part Three](Understanding the Foundations of Eternal Conscious Torment – Part Three)

    [Understanding the Foundations of Eternal Conscious Torment – Part Four](Understanding the Foundations of Eternal Conscious Torment – Part Four)
     
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  2. public hermit

    public hermit Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Maybe I missed it, but it would have been nice if this series had also included an account of Apokatastasis and how prevalent it was. I was also surprised that Irenaeus was thrown in with Augustine as promoting eternal torment, or starting things in that direction. Did I read that wrong? I generally read Irenaeus as a counter to Augustine's concept of original sin.
     
  3. FineLinen

    FineLinen Senior Veteran Supporter

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    Dear Hermit: Irenaeus is NOT thrown in with Augustine promoting this dogma
    Dear Hermit: The thrust of these links is not Apokatastasis.There is no question in my foggy head the first 500 years of Christianity was dominated by the Restitution of the all, and although it would be nice to include it in the series, alas it is not so.

    The Beautiful Heresy- Christian Universalism: The Early Church
     
  4. public hermit

    public hermit Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I am referring the 4th link you offer. The writer states that the concept that there was no salvation outside the church begins with Irenaeus. Which, is probably true, correct?
     
  5. Der Alter

    Der Alter This is me about 1 yr. old. Supporter

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    The writings of the ECF are available on a few websites you can do a simple word search.
    Irenaeus Against Heresies. Book II. Chap. XXVII.
    7. That eternal fire, [for instance,] is prepared for sinners, both the Lord has plainly declared, and the rest of the Scriptures demonstrate. And that God fore-knew that this would happen, the Scriptures do in like manner demonstrate, since He prepared eternal fire from the beginning for those who were [afterwards] to transgress [His commandments]; but the cause itself of the nature of such transgressors neither has any Scripture informed us, nor has an apostle told us, nor has the Lord taught us.

    Irenaeus Against Heresies. Book III Chap IV
    7. the Saviour of those who are saved, and the Judge of those who are judged, and sending into eternal fire those who transform the truth, and despise His Father and His advent.

    Irenaeus Against Heresies. Book III. Chap XXIII
    3. And this same thing does the Lord also say in the Gospel, to those who are found upon the left hand: “Depart from me, ye cursed, into ever: lasting fire, which my Father hath prepared for the devil and his angels;”116 indicating that eternal fire was not originally prepared for man, but for him who beguiled man, and caused him to offend — for him, I say, who is chief of the apostasy, and for those angels who became apostates along with him; which [fire], indeed, they too shall justly feel, who, like him, persevere in works of wickedness, without repentance, and without retracing their steps.

    Irenaeus Against Heresies. Book IV. Chap. XXVII.
    4. As then the unrighteous, the idolaters, and fornicators perished, so also is it now: for both the Lord declares, that such persons are sent into eternal fire; (Mat_25:41) and the apostle says, “Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, not effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.”
     
  6. FineLinen

    FineLinen Senior Veteran Supporter

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    Dear Hermit: Could be.

    Irenaeus: Against Heresies - Book 1
     
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  7. FineLinen

    FineLinen Senior Veteran Supporter

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    God is the Creator of all men.

    “He hath made of one blood, all nations of men, to dwell on all the face of the earth.” (Acts 17:26) He would not have created intelligent beings, had he known they were to be forever miserable.

    To suppose that God would bring beings into existence who he knew would be infinite losers by that existence, is to charge him with the utmost malignity. The existence itself would not be a blessing, but a curse; the greatness of which cannot be described.

    As God is infinite in knowledge, and as he sees the end from the beginning, he must have known before the creation, the result of the existence he was about to confer, and whether, upon the whole, it would be a blessing; and , as he was not under any necessity to create man, being also infinitely benevolent, he could not have conferred an existence that he knew would end in the worst possible consequences to his creatures. -Thomas Whittmore-
     
  8. Saint Steven

    Saint Steven You can call me Steve Supporter

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    How hypocritical that the Damnationists were claiming that the greater hope is a pagan religion. Little did they know...
     
  9. Shrewd Manager

    Shrewd Manager Through him, in all things, more than conquerors. Supporter

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    St Augustine: patron saint of eternal damnation. What a legacy. A nasty blot on the record, a black eye if you will.

    Reminds me of the Boney M song 'Plantation Boy', replacing that word with 'Damnation':

    Damnation boy, come on and get going
    Yesterday's chains are broken in two.
    Damnation boy, a new mood is growing,
    Reaching the hills, the valleys and you.




    As an aside, Boney M was prohibited from singing 'Rivers of Babylon' when they toured Israel couple of years ago.
     
  10. Shrewd Manager

    Shrewd Manager Through him, in all things, more than conquerors. Supporter

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    If damnationism is not an outright pagan doctrine, it certainly is deceptively similar in character:
    • wrathful deity requiring placation - check.
    • instils terror of afterlife torment to produce compliance - check.
    • renders the deity distant and unknown, arbitrary and capricious - check.
    If it quacks and walks like a duck, well could it be a church doctor with piles?
     
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  11. Saint Steven

    Saint Steven You can call me Steve Supporter

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    Yes. They seem to have turned our loving heavenly Father into an angry volcano god. And will fight tooth and nail to keep him that way. It just isn't Christianity without a forever burning hell.
     
  12. DNB

    DNB Member

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    Well, I only made it through the first page of the links, ...I hope that I got the gist of what the author was protesting...?
    I've always understood that the Bible taught eternal torment. Now, maybe I didn't read enough to appreciate the author's position, but from what I did read, he seems to equate eternal torment as a direct infliction upon man, from God himself. My position is that man is punishing himself due to a guilty conscience.
    Just as Paul described the act of treating wickedness with kindness, as tantamount to placing burning coals on the culprits head, this is the same figurative depiction of the the torment in hell. Man, who was offered redemption at no cost, outside of saying sorry and thank you, contemptuously, defiantly and violently, rejected it. And thus, will be in an ever regretful, frustrated and disgraced state come Judgement Day. God does not need to raise a finger against the reprobate, for their own humiliation and remorse and will be commensurate to their crime.
    Under such circumstances, God cannot be charged with cruelty or sadism, or any other characteristic that is antithetical to his holiness and divinity. For again, the ungodly have caused their own demise, despite God's gracious efforts to have them avoid such a consequence, and thus, they are in fact punishing themselves due to the sorrow and frustration of their predicament. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth!
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2020
  13. Shrewd Manager

    Shrewd Manager Through him, in all things, more than conquerors. Supporter

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    Greetings friend.

    Easy to blame man for his sin, lost as he is in the darkness of ignorance, perishing for lack of knowledge, the gospel veiled from his ears by the evil one etc. His capacity to consent is overborne by forces beyond his knowledge or control, only to be saddled with the puzzling prospect of eternal torment. I sympathise with protest atheism on this strawman basis.

    So the poor young rape victim who commits suicide hating Jesus for not saving her - hellbound? The atheist soldier who gives his life in self-sacrificial heroism to save his platoon - hellbound?

    May I suggest to you that God's justice, mercy, wrath and grace are not in tension. I suggest that God's justice system is not so crude as to provide for absolute binary sentences, and conditioned only upon the checking of a box. That would be a travesty and a mockery.

    Here's the truth: 'Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do.'

    And again 'No man can come to me except the Father draw him'.

    The condign outcome is that the accrued attachments and corruption of a life of unbridled sin will be just that much harder to overcome, hence the fiery torment. But God destroys the sin and delivers the sinner transformed, just as Jesus heals the lepers, makes the lame to dance like deer, restores sight to those blind from birth, proclaims the super-Jubilee where all things are made new.

    'For everyone will be salted with fire, and salt is good.'

    The Gospel is glad tidings of great joy for all mankind. The appreciable risk of eternal damnation for any is by necessity anathema to the gospel.
     
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  14. DNB

    DNB Member

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    Hello SM, ...well, I'm not a universalist, which I'd be inclined to label you if I've understood the sentiments of your last reply? In my opinion, attempting to speak as scripturally objective and discerning as possible, that the only two soteriological positions are redemption and rejection. And as far as rejection is concerned, the only two options that i might consider are annihilation or eternal damnation. In short, I don't believe that annihilation is a viable option, and thus, weeping and gnashing of teeth, where the flame and the worm dieth not, appears to be inevitable.
    Plus, nor do I accept theories of man's fallen nature. All men are created in the image of God, and that image has never been lost, or constitutionally deprecated.

    But, as far as who are the saved, and who are the lost goes, outside of the five solas, that remains a mystery to me as to what types of exception that there may be (children, remote civilizations, false indoctrination, ...?). So, as to those who you claim are hell-bound, I don't know about their salvific standing with God. But, i will say, that if for whatever reason they do not qualify for the Kingdom, then yes, eternal ostracization awaits them. For, when the books are opened, we will see what insidious evils lie within all of us, ...and I anticipate that there will be many surprises on that day.

    In short, Biblically speaking, the perceived universalist passages do not outweigh the eternally lost principle's proof-texts.
     
  15. Shrewd Manager

    Shrewd Manager Through him, in all things, more than conquerors. Supporter

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    What if I said to you that for every eternal damnation proof text you give me, I'll find you 7 that support UR?

    Restorationism is there for those with eyes to see, and saturates scripture from alpha to omega.

    All of us are evil, but the Father still gives us good gifts. Because we're more valuable to Him than 2-bit sparrows (whom He dearly loves as well), and because He wants all men to come to a knowledge of the truth. Do you deny God's will or ability to see this great plan to fruition? Does Jesus suffer and die only to reveal that a worse fate awaits than sin and death?

    As all creation proceeds from God, so too shall it return unto Him. This 'exitus-reditus' pattern underpins the bulk of Biblical narratives. This was another of Jesus' revelations: even where God destroys, it is unto salvation. With God, there's always hope.

    Why do you think God's love expires when we do? Why must the final judgment be unto damnation? The final visions of Revelation teach that it is not. In Rev 21:24-26 the nations, having been consumed in divine fire in Rev 20:9 return to worship in the new world, and in Rev 22:2 we're told 'the leaves of the tree of life are for the healing of the nations.' Now that's clean.

    Before dismissing UR, I would hope that you take more time to study it and test the spirits.
     
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  16. FineLinen

    FineLinen Senior Veteran Supporter

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  17. FineLinen

    FineLinen Senior Veteran Supporter

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    Dear DNB: Your two soteriological positions lack two words.

    "But God"

    My one position, minus the soteriological part=

    God loves me, this I know. He will not let us go, He will not ever stop loving us, ever!

    “A lost sheep is, for all practical purposes a dead sheep. It is the admission that we are dead in our sins—that we have no power of ourselves either to save ourselves or to convince anyone else that we are worth saving. It is the recognition that our whole life is out of our hands and that if we ever live again, our life will be entirely the gift of some gracious shepherd. God finds us the desert of death (not in the garden of improvement) and in the power of Jesus’ resurrection, he puts us on his shoulders rejoicing and brings us home.” -Robert Farrar Capon-

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2020
  18. Shrewd Manager

    Shrewd Manager Through him, in all things, more than conquerors. Supporter

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  19. FineLinen

    FineLinen Senior Veteran Supporter

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    Dear Ben: My brother I have no idea where you have arrived at the 77 fold 7 to 1 ratio?

    For normal peeps it most assuredly would be a fantastic improvement over the lose, lose, lose idea our Master gathers up leftover pieces of miracle fish & bread that NOTHING be lost, but alas, the broken species of our race is not quite so important.

    This old bedraggled, bruised and broken peep of diminishing eyesight, hearing and sound mind, to name the least of the vast former arsenal, will not settle for such dismal return! NOT!

    My formula = One man makes polus sinners> > > one Man as Prince-Leader makes the identical polus righteous.

    Yup! 100% success of reconciliation!

     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2020
  20. Saint Steven

    Saint Steven You can call me Steve Supporter

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    I really like that term, "binary sentences". (bold emphasis in your quote mine)
    It seems that the judgment will not be black and white, single issue, on/off, in or out.

    In fact, if that was the case, there would be no need for judgment. What's to decide? You are either on the guest list or you are not.

    The bit in Matthew chapter 25 about feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, caring for the sick and visiting those in prison, speaks volumes here. As does the aspect of forgiveness for others being needed for our own forgiveness. And even this bit about the Gentiles. (capital "G")

    Romans 2:14-16
    (Indeed, when Gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law. 15 They show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts sometimes accusing them and at other times even defending them.) 16 This will take place on the day when God judges people’s secrets through Jesus Christ, as my gospel declares.
     
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