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Why are so many Christians against annihilation in hell when scripture supports it?

Discussion in 'Controversial Christian Theology' started by DM25, Jul 11, 2018.

  1. Der Alte

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

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    <DorothyM>Alright Clement, I see you’ve made up a new name for God to fit the imagined values you think He has. Since neither He nor Jesus nor anyone who we know knew them uses either the name you invented (a very uncomplimentary one I might add) and none of them describe his values as you do, it is likely a name and description He does not recognize. But since you can mostly paste links and demand we prove whatever you say is contradicted, thoughts no one who knew God had, it will be impossible to get you to see anything but your imagined position. You’ve made up your mind and no other info is allowed in. God Himself cannot break through until the day you stand before him and he tells you that the name you’ve allowed yourself to personally christen him with is unacceptabl.<end>
    I could not have said it better. I came to the same conclusion some time ago. I got tired of the endless copy/pastes from tents-r-us, Ilaria Ramelli et al. So I no longer read or respond to such posts.
     
  2. Oldmantook

    Oldmantook Well-Known Member

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    One thing I agree with you is that we are both old. I don't know about you but time has flown by way too fast for me.
    I could take the same approach and ask how could Jesus' audience comprehend aiōnion to mean "everlasting?"
    Although the Sadducees did not believe in any resurrection after death, I think you agree with me that Jesus was not in the habit of pleasing the Sadducees and catering to their false beliefs. Jesus simply spoke truth irrespective of what beliefs people held. In addition, Jesus made a regular practice of hiding spiritual truth from those whose hearts were already hardened and dulled (Matt 13:13-15). Thus in my opinion it was not necessary for Jesus to take his audience's previous understanding into account when instructing them in the truth.

    Having said that, we unlike Jesus' contemporaries, have the benefit of progressive revelation as found in the completed Canon of Scripture. Scripture interprets scripture so we have the added benefit of being able to interpret the Matthean passage in light of John's Revelation which specifically does mention a 1,000 year age. Hope that answers your question. Be blessed.
     
  3. ClementofA

    ClementofA Well-Known Member Supporter

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    How could they possibly know? There were a number of ancient views re a finite Messianic reign that would occur at the end of the age. The length of this finite period varied from hundreds to several thousand years, 1000 years being quite common.

    Secondly the only OT reference to "eonian life" was Dan.12:2-3, which was the exact same topic Jesus spoke of in Mt.25:46. So His hearers should have seen a connection there with the words "eonian life". Furthermore, they should have seen the connection between life & punishment in both Dan.12:2-3 & Mt.25:46. Additionally, they could have realized that the eonian contrast in Dan.12:2 is between finite destinies. So it wouldn't be impossible to conclude that it would be a 1000 year eon.

    The context of Dan.12:2 suggests the view that both the life & the punishment referred to in v.2 are of finite duration (OLAM), since v.3 speaks of those who will be for OLAM "and further".

    2 From those sleeping in the soil of the ground many shall awake, these to eonian life
    and these to reproach for eonian repulsion." 3 The intelligent shall warn as the warning
    of the atmosphere, and those justifying many are as the stars for the eon and further."
    (Dan.12:2-3, CLV)

    The Hebrew word for eonian (v.2) & eon (v.3) above is OLAM which is often used of limited durations in the OT. In verse 3 of Dan. 12 are the words "OLAM and further" showing an example of its finite duration in the very next words after Dan. 12:2. Thus, in context, the OLAM occurences in v.2 could also both be understood as being of finite duration.

    Additionally, the early church accepted the following Greek OT translation of the Hebrew OT of Dan. 12:3:

    καὶ οἱ συνιέντες ἐκλάμψουσιν ὡς ἡ λαμπρότης τοῦ στερεώματος καὶ ἀπὸ τῶν δικαίων τῶν πολλῶν ὡς οἱ ἀστέρες εἰς τοὺς αἰῶνας καὶ ἔτι[and further]

    Notice the words at the end saying KAI ETI, meaning "and further" or "and still" or "and yet" & other synonyms.

    eti: "still, yet...Definition: (a) of time: still, yet, even now, (b) of degree: even, further, more, in addition." Strong's Greek: 2089. ἔτι (eti) -- still, yet

    εἰς τοὺς αἰῶνας καὶ ἔτι means "into the ages and further" as a translation of the Hebrew L'OLAM WA ED[5703, AD]

    So this early church Greek translation of the Hebrew Scriptures agrees with the above translation (& those below) using the words "and further", "futurity", "beyond" & similarly.

    3 and·the·ones-being-intelligent they-shall- warn as·warning-of the·atmosphere
    and·ones-leading-to-righteousness-of the·many-ones as·the·stars for·eon and·futurity (Dan. 12:3, Hebrew-English Interlinear)
    http://www.scripture4all.org/OnlineInterlinear/OTpdf/dan12.pdf

    2 and, many of the sleepers in the dusty ground, shall awake,—these, [shall be] to age-abiding life, but, those, to reproach, and age-abiding abhorrence;
    3 and, they who make wise, shall shine like the shining of the expanse,—and, they who bring the many to righteousness, like the stars to times age-abiding and beyond. (Dan. 12:2-3, Rotherham)

    2 And the multitude of those sleeping in the dust of the ground do awake, some to life age-during, and some to reproaches—to abhorrence age-during.
    3 And those teaching do shine as the brightness of the expanse, and those justifying the multitude as stars to the age and for ever*. (Dan. 12:2-3, YLT)
    * for "for ever" Young of YLT says substitute "age during" everywhere in Scripture: http://heraldmag.org/olb/Contents/bibles/ylt.pdf

    Dan. 12:2-3 was the only Biblical reference to "life OLAM" Jesus listeners had to understand His meaning of "life aionios"(life OLAM) in Mt.25:46 & elsewhere in the New Testament.

    Verse 3 speaks of those justifying "many". Who are these "many"? The same "many" of verse 2, including those who were resurrected to "shame" & "contempt"? IOW the passage affirms universalism?

    In the Greek Old Testament (LXX, Septuagint) of Isaiah 54:4 the word aionios appears and is used of finite duration:

    4 You should not fear that you were disgraced, nor should you feel ashamed that you were berated. For shame everlasting(aionios) you shall forget; and the scorn of your widowhood in no way shall you remember any longer (Apostolic Bible Polygot, LXX)

    The same phrase, and Greek words, for "shame everlasting"(aionios) in Isa.54:4 occur again at Dan.12:2 LXX, which i have higlighted within the brackets:

    Dan.12:2 καὶ πολλοὶ τῶν καθευδόντων ἐν γῆς χώματι ἐξεγερθήσονται οὗτοι εἰς ζωὴν αἰώνιον καὶ οὗτοι εἰς ὀνειδισμὸν καὶ εἰς [αἰσχύνην αἰώνιον]

    Isa.54:4 μὴ φοβοῦ ὅτι κατῃσχύνθης μηδὲ ἐντραπῇς ὅτι ὠνειδίσθης ὅτι [αἰσχύνην αἰώνιον] ἐπιλήσῃ καὶ ὄνειδος τῆς χηρείας σου οὐ μὴ μνησθήσῃ

    Kata Biblon Wiki Lexicon - ??????? - shame/disgrace/dishonor (n.)

    Strong's Greek: 152. ??????? (aischuné) -- shame

    In Isa.54:4 aionios/eonian is finite: "For shame everlasting[eonian] you shall forget".

    In that light we might consider that the exact same phrase from the LXX scholars, "shame everlasting [eonian]" in Dan.12:2, may also be finite.

    http://www.hopebeyondhell.net/articles/further-study/eternity/
     
  4. Der Alte

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

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    <OldmanT>One thing I agree with you is that we are both old. I don't know about you but time has flown by way too fast for me.
    I could take the same approach and ask how could Jesus' audience comprehend aiōnion to mean "everlasting?"
    Although the Sadducees did not believe in any resurrection after death, I think you agree with me that Jesus was not in the habit of pleasing the Sadducees and catering to their false beliefs. Jesus simply spoke truth irrespective of what beliefs people held. In addition, Jesus made a regular practice of hiding spiritual truth from those whose hearts were already hardened and dulled (Matt 13:13-15). Thus in my opinion it was not necessary for Jesus to take his audience's previous understanding into account when instructing them in the truth.
    Having said that, we unlike Jesus' contemporaries, have the benefit of progressive revelation as found in the completed Canon of Scripture. Scripture interprets scripture so we have the added benefit of being able to interpret the Matthean passage in light of John's Revelation which specifically does mention a 1,000 year age. Hope that answers your question. Be blessed.<end>

    This is about what I expected. Matt 13:13-15 the audience is mixed it does not distinguish between those whose hearts were already hardened and those whose hearts were not.
    ..... In your theology is it even possible that Jesus actually wanted some people at some time to understand what He was saying? How do we know the difference? There is an old adage about interpreting scripture."If the plain sense makes good sense, it is nonsense to seek any other sense."
    .....You have kind of danced around the point I was making. Yes we do have the "added benefit of being able to interpret the Matthean passage in light of John's Revelation which specifically does mention a 1,000 year age." And we also have the ability to conflate widely disparate passages to make them support various assumptions/presuppositions. Is there any scriptural evidence prior to Matthew which would cause anyone in Jesus' audience in Matt 25;31-46 to think that He was referring to a 1000 year aion?
    Since there is not I see no scriptural support for that assumption.
    ....."how could Jesus' audience comprehend aiōnion to mean "everlasting?" Here are a few verses from a list of 23 which clearly define aionion as eternal, everlasting etc.

    Romans 1:20
    (20) For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal [ἀΐ́διος/aidios] power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:]
    Romans 16:26
    (26) But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting [αἰώνιος/aionios] God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith:
    In Romans 1:20 Paul refers to God’s power and Godhead as “aidios.” Scholars agree “aidios” unquestionably means eternal, everlasting, unending etc. In Rom 16:26 Paul refers to God as “aionios,” therefore Paul evidently considers “aidios” and “aionios” to be synonymous
    2 Corinthians 4:17-18
    (17) For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal [αἰώνιος/aionios] weight of glory;
    (18) While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal;[πρόσκαιρος/proskairos] but the things which are not seen are eternal [αἰώνιος/aionios]
    In this passage “aionios” is contrasted with “for a moment,” vs. 4, and “temporal,” vs. 5. “Age(s)” a finite period, it is not the opposite of “for a moment”/”temporal/temporary.” “Eternal” is. “Aionios” by definition here means “eternal.”
    2 Corinthians 5:1
    (1) For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal [αἰώνιος/aionios] in the heavens.
    In this verse “aionios house” is contrasted with “earthly house which is destroyed.” Does the UR crowd think God is going to replace our destroyed earthly house with an ages long house which will also be destroyed at the end of an age? The aionios house is not destroyed, the opposite of “is destroyed.” Thus “aionios” by definition here means “eternal.”
    1 Peter 1:23
    (23) For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, [ ̓́αφθαρτος/aphthartos] through the living and enduring word of God. …
    1 Peter 1:25
    (25) but the word of the Lord endures forever.[αἰών/aion] " And this is the word that was preached to you.
    In verse 23 “word of God” is paired with “imperishable.” In verse 25 the word of God “endures εις τον αιωνα unto eternity. ” Thus by definition “aion” here means “eternity.”
    1 Timothy 6:16
    (16) Who only hath immortality, [ ̓́αφθαρτος/aphthartos] dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power everlasting[αἰώνιος/aionios]
    In this verse “aionios” is paired with “immortality.” If “aionios” is only a finite period, God cannot be “immortal” and only exist for a finite period at the same time. Thus “aionios” by definition means “eternal.”
    The complete list of 23 can be read at my [post #162] this thread.
     
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2018
  5. he-man

    he-man he-man

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    Rev 20:14 is not the way people think because it actually reads: "death and the grave we're cast off into the lake of fire." That's explained by "the second death" which means that there will not be an eternal life only the eternal penalty of cessation of being.
     
  6. Shempster

    Shempster ImJustMe Supporter

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    Not to start a rabbit trail here, but isn't it possible that the wicked ARE consciously dead....that is, until God raises them up for the final judgement?
     
  7. Der Alte

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

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    I derive my view from these three passages.
    In Isa 14 there is a long passage about the king of Babylon dying, according to many the dead know nothing. They are supposedly annihilated, destroyed, pfft, gone! But God, Himself, speaking, these dead people in שאול/sheol, know something, they move, meet the dead coming to sheol, stir up, raise up, speak and say, etc.

    Isa 14:9-11 (KJV)
    9) Hell [שאול ] from beneath is moved for thee to meet thee at thy coming: it stirreth up the dead for thee, even all the chief ones of the earth; it hath raised up from their thrones all the kings of the nations.

    10) All they shall speak and say unto thee, Art thou also become weak as we? art thou become like unto us?
    11) Thy pomp is brought down to the grave, [שאול] and the noise of thy viols: the worm is spread under thee, and the worms cover thee.

    [ . . . ]
    22) For I will rise up against them, saith the LORD of hosts, and cut off from Babylon the name, and remnant, and son, and nephew, saith the LORD.
    In this passage God, himself is speaking, and I see a whole lot of shaking going on, moving, rising up, and speaking in . These dead people seem to know something, about something. We know that verses 11 through 14 describe actual historical events, the death of Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon.
    Some will try to argue that this passage is figurative because fir trees don’t literally rejoice, vs. 8. They will try to argue that the passage must be figurative since God told Israel “take up this proverb against the king of Babylon.” vs. 4. The occurrence of one figurative expression in a passage does not prove that anything else in the passage is figurative.
    .....The Hebrew word שאול/mashal translated “proverb” does not necessarily mean something is fictional. For example, Israel did not become fictional when God made them a mashal/proverb in 2 Chronicles 7:20, Psalms 44:14, and Jeremiah 24:9.

    .....Here is another passage where God Himself is speaking and people who are dead in sheol, speaking, being ashamed, comforted, etc.

    Ezek 32:18-22, 30-31 (KJV)
    18) Son of man, [Ezekiel] wail for the multitude of Egypt, and cast them down, even her, and the daughters of the famous nations, unto the nether parts of the earth, with them that go down into the pit.
    19) Whom dost thou pass in beauty? go down, and be thou laid with the uncircumcised.
    20) They shall fall in the midst of them that are slain by the sword: she is delivered to the sword: draw her and all her multitudes.
    21) The strong among the mighty shall speak to him out of the midst of hell [שאול] with them that help him: they are gone down, they lie uncircumcised, slain by the sword.

    22) Asshur is there and all her company: his graves are about him: all of them slain, fallen by the sword::[ . . . ]
    Eze 32:30-31
    (30) There be the princes of the north, all of them, and all the Zidonians, which are gone down with the slain; with their terror they are ashamed of their might; and they lie uncircumcised with them that be slain by the sword, and bear their shame with them that go down to the pit.
    (31) Pharaoh shall see them, and shall be comforted over all his multitude, even Pharaoh and all his army slain by the sword, saith the Lord GOD.
    In the New Testament Jesus speaking, a dead man in Hades had eyes, was in torment, saw Abraham, “cried and said,” asked for water, begged Abraham, etc.
    Luk 16:22-28
    (22) And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried;
    (23) And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
    (24) And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.
    (25) But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented.
    (26) And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence.
    (27) Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father's house:
    (28) For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment.


     
  8. Ron Gurley

    Ron Gurley What U See is What U Get!

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    Revelation 14:11
    And the smoke of their torment goes up forever and ever; they have no rest day and night, those who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name.”

    And that is a long time ....especially when you get near to the end!

    Matthew 25
    46 These (unbelieving goat NATIONS) will go away into eternal (spiritual) punishment (separation), but the righteous (believing sheep NATIONS)
    into eternal (spiritual) life.” (presence)

    God judges Mankind into two "piles":
    1. wicked
    2. righteous


    Psalm 1:6
    For the Lord knows the way of the righteous, But the way of the wicked will perish.

    Proverbs 3:33
    The curse of the Lord is on the house of the wicked, But He blesses the dwelling of the righteous.

    Proverbs 10:16
    The wages of the righteous is life, The income of the wicked, punishment.

    Proverbs 15:9
    The way of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord, But He loves one who pursues righteousness.
     
  9. narrowgateevangelist

    narrowgateevangelist New Member Supporter

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    Annihilation is nice. 72 virgins is nice too.

    Jesus said this


    Luke 16: 15. And he said unto them, Ye are they which justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts: for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God. 16. The law and the prophets were until John: since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it. 17. And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass, than one tittle of the law to fail. 18. Whosoever putteth away his wife, and marrieth another, committeth adultery: and whosoever marrieth her that is put away from her husband committeth adultery. 19. There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day: 20. And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores, 21. And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores. 22. And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried; 23. And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. 24. And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame. 25. But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented. 26. And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence. 27. Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father's house: 28. For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment. 29. Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them. 30. And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent. 31. And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.
     
  10. Dorothy Mae

    Dorothy Mae Well-Known Member

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    Thanks. It is amazing to me that such posters keep insisting on what someone else thinks is true. They themselves cannot put into words what they think and so they do not think but let someone else think for them. So if you try to talk to them, you cannot. You can only get links and pasted from another man's thoughts. I can only conclude that these have shut down their minds and follow someone else without having to bother to think. It is too bad because they cannot really interact with people and certainly not with God who is not at all fond of cut and pasting but likes real communication.

    On that line, those who post ONLY bible verses I also find rather irritating. It is also like they have no thoughts at all. I imagine that a table where all people could do while fellowshipping is quote someone else. That is it. I mean would that be boring or what? You would not get to know much about anyone except who had a good memory and what particular verses they mention that evening.
     
  11. Dorothy Mae

    Dorothy Mae Well-Known Member

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    That is exactly the reward the wicked are hoping for. God would be doing them a big big favor by granting them their desire. Not much of a punishment but justice is not probably not a value for those who don't think about this part of it. Jesus warned about the suffering and did not indicate non-existance was a hope for those who reject him.
     
  12. he-man

    he-man he-man

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    No, God is not One to impose a sentence of brutality.
    2Th 1:7  and to you that are troubled repose with us, at the revelation of the Lord Jesus from heaven, with the angels of his power, 

    2Th 1:8  in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who know not God, and those who do not obey the glad tidings of our Lord Jesus Christ; 

    2Th 1:9  who shall pay the penalty of everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his might, 
     
  13. Der Alte

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

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    Was God destroying everyone in the world, young, old, men, women, by flood not brutal? Was God destroying Sodom, Gomorrah and the cities of the plain, men, women, young, old, by fire not brutal. Was it not brutal when God sent Israel into Canaan and commanded them to kill all living things?
    .....In 2 Thess 1:9 the word translated "destruction" does not necessarily mean to annihilate, cease to exist. This list is from the BDAG lexicon entry for "apollumi." The entire entry is 2 pages long and can be viewed at this link http://lareopage.free.fr/a&g/main.htm

    ἀπόλλυμι/Apollumi occurs 86 times in the NT, of this 68 times, 79%, it cannot mean the destruction/annihilation which some argue supposedly occurs at the final judgment. Here is a list of those meanings.
    (1) ruin, (2) do not bring about his ruin, (3) put to death, the wicked tenants, (4) he will put the evildoers to a miserable death, (5) destroy the wisdom of the wise, (6) destroy the understanding, (7) lose, (8) lose the reward, (9) lose what we have worked for, (10) lose one’s life, (11) lose oneself, (12) The man who risks his life in battle has the best chance of saving it; the one who flees to save it is most likely to lose it’), (13) ruined, (14) die, the man dies, (15) As a cry of anguish, we are perishing!, (16) of disaster that the stormy sea brings to the seafarer, (17) die by the sword, (18) die of hunger, (19) be corrupted, (20) killed by the snakes, (21) those who are lost, (22) of things be lost, (23) pass away, (24) be ruined, (26) of bursting wineskins, (25) fading beauty, (26) transitory beauty of gold, (27) passing splendor, (28) Of earthly food, (29) spoiled honey, (30) Of falling hair, (31) a member or organ of the body, (32) remnants of food, (33) of wine that has lost its flavor, (34) of sheep gone astray, (35) Of a lost son [that returned].
    Further "destruction" in 2 Th 1:9 is qualified "destruction from the presence of the Lord." If something/someone is destroyed i.e. annihilated, no longer exist, it/they cannot be "from the presence of" the Lord or anything.
     
  14. ClementofA

    ClementofA Well-Known Member Supporter

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    That claim has been answered & disproven before, e.g.:

    https://www.christianforums.com/thr...os-based-on-aion.8040292/page-2#post-72110302

    https://www.christianforums.com/thr...torture-in-fire.8041369/page-25#post-72149978

    https://www.christianforums.com/thr...k-a-universalism.8070242/page-8#post-72862899

    OTOH here we see many examples where αἰών and αἰώνιος are defined/described as being of a finite duration:

    http://www.city-data.com/forum/christianity/2931562-does-aionios-always-mean-eternal-ancient.html

    http://www.hopebeyondhell.net/articles/further-study/eternity/

    12 points re forever and ever being a deceptive translation & being finite:
    https://www.christianforums.com/thr...-not-cast-off-for-ever.8041512/#post-72126038

    Jesus didn't use the best words & expressions to describe endlessness in regards to punishment, because He didn't believe in endless punishment:

    https://www.christianforums.com/thr...-a-universalism.8070242/page-14#post-72882151
     
  15. ClementofA

    ClementofA Well-Known Member Supporter

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    That argument is extremely confusing. Who can understand what the author is trying to say? First he speaks of "aionas aionion" as meaning a "finite period" & then, in the same sentence, he refers to it being "forever and forever". Which is it, forever or finite?

    If someone said to me "I have had no rest day or night", this could mean for a period of 24 hours. Not forever and ever.

    If someone said to me "I've had no rest day or night for ages", this could mean for a finite period of days, weeks or months. It doesn't mean forever. BTW the phrase 'forever and ever' in Rev.14:11 literally translates as "to ages of ages". So having no rest day or night for "ages" can mean for a short or long time of finite duration.

    Here is the literal translation from a Greek-English Interlinear:

    http://biblehub.com/interlinear/revelation/14-11.htm

    And another more literal translation than yours:

    Young's Literal Translation
    and the smoke of their torment doth go up to ages of ages; and they have no rest day and night, who are bowing before the beast and his image, also if any doth receive the mark of his name.

    Scripture also speaks of night being "no more". So can "day and night" be forever?

    For 12 arguments re "ages of ages" ending, see posts 130 & 131 @

    https://www.christianforums.com/thr...hilationsim-vs-eternal-torment.8019864/page-7

    This includes everyone in the universe, including the dead and demons:

    Rev.5:13 And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are on the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.

    John speaks of "every creature" & to emphasize this again he repeats "and all that are in them":

    Rev.5:13 And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are on the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.

    This worship (v.13) uses the same worshipful words as the redeemed of vs 9-10 use in v.12:

    12 Saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing.

    All this being in the context of salvation - "the Lamb that was slain" (v.12 & 13).

    Lk.12:47 And that servant, which knew his lord's will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes. 48 But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more.

    This sounds like just payback, not endless annihilation or tortures:

    Rev.18:6 Reward her even as she rewarded you, and double unto her double according to her works: in the cup which she hath filled fill to her double.

    10:28 A man that hath set at nought Moses' law dieth without compassion on the word of two or three witnesses: 29 of how much sorer punishment, think ye, shall he be judged worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?

    Generally capital punishment under Moses' law was by stoning. Stoning to death is not a very sore or long lasting punishment. People suffered far worse deaths via the torture methods of the eternal hell believing Medieval Inquisitionists and the German Nazis under Hitler.

    Therefore, if the writer of Hebrews believed that wicked, rebellious, Christ rejectors would be punished with something so monstrous as being endlessly annihilated or tormented, he would not have chosen to compare their punishment to something so lame as being stoned to death. Clearly he did not believe Love Omnipotent is an unfeeling terminator machine or sadist who abandons forever the beings He created in His own image & likeness so easily.

    Mt.18:23 Therefore is the kingdom of heaven likened unto a certain king, which would take account of his servants. 24 And when he had begun to reckon...
    34 And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him. 35 So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses.

    Furthermore, the context of Matthew 5:25-26, both before & after those 2 verses, is making references to Gehenna. Verses 21-26 have to do with anger & being reconciled & v.22 warns of Gehenna. In verses 27-30 the subject is adultery & v.30 warns regarding Gehenna.

    Matt 5:25-26 Come to terms quickly with your adversary before it is too late and you are dragged into court, handed over to an officer, and thrown in jail. I assure you that you won't be free again until you have paid the last penny.

    "They must pay (as GMac says) the uttermost farthing -- which is to say, they must tender the forgiveness of their brethren that is owed, the repentance and sorrow for sin that is owed, etc. Otherwise they do stay in prison with the tormenters. (their guilt? their hate? their own filthiness?) At last resort, if they still refuse to let go that nasty pet they've been stroking, they must even suffer the outer darkness. God will remove Himself from them to the extent that He can do so without causing their existence to cease. As Tom Talbot points out so well, no sane person of free will (and the child must be sane and informed to have freedom) could possibly choose ultimate horror over ultimate delight throughout the unending ages." https://forum.evangelicaluniversalist.com/t/why-affirm-belief-in-hell/4967/12

    Rom 5:18 Consequently, then, as it was through one offense for ALL MANKIND for condemnation, thus also it is through one just act for ALL MANKIND for life's justifying."

    Rom 5:19 For even as, through the disobedience of the one man, THE MANY were constituted sinners, thus also, through the obedience of the One, THE MANY shall be constituted just."

    Paul makes a parallel between "the many" who were condemned & sinners and those who will be justified & constituted just.

    “In Romans 5, the justification is co-extensive with the condemnation. Since all share in one, all share in the other. If only a certain portion of the human race had partaken of the sin of Adam, only a certain portion would partake of the justification of Christ. But St. Paul affirms all to have been involved in one, and all to be included in the other.”

    Therefore there is salvation after death. And corrective punishment.

    https://www.tentmaker.org/books/hope_beyond_hell.pdf

    Jesus shall see of the travail of His soul & be satisfied. Not satisfied a little bit, but the vast majority fried alive forever.

    "He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities." (Isa.53:11).

    For how "many" (not few) did He "bear their iniquities"? All.

    https://www.tentmaker.org/books/hope_beyond_hell.pdf
     
  16. ClementofA

    ClementofA Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I think it was a superior word to use relative to the ambiguous aion & aionios, if God was a believer in endless punishment. Moreover, as opposed to aion and aionios (which are often used of finite duration), God had a number of other words & expressions available that would also have better served to express endless punishment, if Love Omnipotent were a believer of such. But He never uses such of eschatological punishment. So the reasonable conclusion is that Love Omnipotent rejected using such words and expressions of a final destiny of endless punishment because He knew better & He rejected the notion that anyone will endure endless punishment. Those words & expresssions are:

    1. no end (Lk.1:33)...this expression is used of God's kingdom having "no end". It is never used of anyone's torments or punishment. We never read of anyone receiving torments that will have "no end". This unambiguous phrase, "no end", would have been a superior choice to the ambiguous words aion & aionion, if Love Omnipotent had a belief in endless torments or annihilation. But He rejected its use in expressing such a fate.

    2. endless (1 Tim.1:4)...Again if Love Omnipotent believed in endless torments, why didn't He use this word to express it, instead of the ambiguous aion & aionion, which often refer to finite durations in ancient Greek usage?

    3. never (Mt.7:23, etc)...this word appears to occur 16 times in the NT & it seems that it never means anything except "never". It is used of "love never fails" (1 Cor.13:8). It also occurs in Mt.7:23 where Jesus says "I never knew you; depart you from Me, those working lawlessness." Which is such an incredibly lame remark, if Love Omnipotent believed in endless torments. If He believed that such an unspeakably horrific final destiny awaits the wicked, including those He was referring to in Mt.7:23, why didn't He make it clear by telling them that they would "never" be saved and/or He would "never" know them? Would that not have been clear & unambiguous, unlike the words He spoke, & unlike the ambiguous aion & aionios, which often refer to finite duration in ancient Koine Greek? OTOH consider re the use of the word "never":

    "Philo saith, “The punishment of the wicked person is, ζην αποθανοντα αει, to live for ever dying, and to be for ever in pains, and griefs, and calamities that never cease..." http://biblehub.com/commentaries/benson/mark/9.htm

    Yet Scripture - never - uses such language. Moreover, it speaks of death being abolished, not being "for ever".

    4. eternal (Rom.1:16; Jude 1:6)...this word, AIDIOS, is used of God's "eternal" power & "eternal" chains that bind until the day of judgement. It is never used of anyone's final destiny. We never read of anyone being tormented for eternal ages. We never read of anyone suffering eternal (AIDIOS) punishment. If Jude believed in endless punishment, he had the perfect opportunity at Jude 1:6 by simply adding that the angels would suffer the judgement of eternal (AIDIOS) punishment or torments. Instead of warning his readers of such a horrificly monstrous fate, as he should have been morally obligated to do if it were a real possibility, instead he conveys the relatively utterly lame & insignificant info that these angelic beings will be kept in chains until judgement day. OTOH, consider:

    "Instead of saying with Philo and Josephus, thanaton athanaton, deathless or immortal death; eirgmon aidion, eternal imprisonment; aidion timorion, eternal torment; and thanaton ateleuteton, interminable death, he [Jesus] used aionion kolasin..." http://www.tentmaker.org/books/prevailing/upd3.html

    "Nyssa defined the vision of God promised there as "life without end, eternal incorruption, undying beatitude [ten ateleuteton zoen, ten aidion aphtharsian , ten athanaton makarioteta]." ("Christianity and Classical Culture: The Metamorphosis of Natural Theology in ..." By Jaroslav Pelikan, p.165 @): https://books.google.ca/books?id=3V...5DMMQ6AEIODAE#v=onepage&q=ateleuteton&f=false

    5. unfading (1 Pet.1:4; 5:4)...Peter uses this word of an endless inheritance reserved in heaven & a crown of glory. It is never used of the endless pain, punishment or torments that anyone will receive. Can it be denied that this would have been a superior word (over aion & aionios) to use to express such a horrific destiny if Love Omnipotent actually had such in store for anyone? Wouldn't He want to express warnings about it in the clearest ways possible?

    6. found no place for repentance (Heb.12:17)...is used in Heb.12:17 of the loss of a finite earthly blessing..."he found no place of repentance, although having earnestly sought it with tears". Never is it used regarding those in Gehenna, Hades, the lake of fire, or eschatological punishment. Never do we read of those cast into any "hell" that they will not (or never) find a place of repentance, even though they earnestly seek it with tears. God was quite capable of expressing such in His Holy Scriptures. But rather than give such a warning, as Love Omnipotent should have if such an unbelievably horrific future awaited anyone, instead we are told of the relatively lame loss of a finite earthly blessing. Such a waste of words if endless punishment were really true.

    7. In Mt.18:6 is the lame warning of a punishment which is compared to mere drowning, which is nothing compared to being kept alive for the sole purpose of being tortured for all the "endless" ages of eternity that have "no end" & "never" cease. Jesus says it is "better for them to have a large millstone hung around their neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea". OTOH, if He had been a believer in endless punishment, He could have expressed that by saying it is better for them to have never lived, never been conceived, or that their parents had never known (had sex with) one another. Compare this anti-biblical Jewish view that the Lord Jesus Christ, Love Omnipotent, rejected:

    "To every individual is apportioned two shares, one in hell and one in paradise. At death, however, the righteous man's portion in hell is exchanged, so that he has two in heaven, while the reverse is true in the case of sinners (Ḥag. 15a). Hence it would have been better for the latter not to have lived at all (Yeb. 63b)." http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/6558-gehenna
     
  17. ClementofA

    ClementofA Well-Known Member Supporter

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    No, i don't consider those "unimaginable horrors". I consider brief temporary sufferings & death to be the general destiny of all humanity. Trying to compare or equate that with endless - pointless - sadistic - torments - is ridiculous. That's like comparing or equating a drop in the ocean with a billion universes full of nothing but water. Even a trillion X a trillion X a trillion millenniums of torments would be next to nothing compared to the duration of endless bliss or endless hell. Which gives you an idea of how truly "unimaginably horrific" endless torments would be.

    https://www.christianforums.com/thr...-torments-were-true-is-god-a-monster.8042349/



    No such entry exists at that page. Moreover that page speaks of a 1957 book, not BDAG which is 2001.
     
  18. Der Alte

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

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    Of course the entry for appolumi does not appear on the main page of the online BAGD I linked to. In order to properly use a lexicon one must first find the page on which a particular word occurs. You can do that can't you?
    .....Unless you can show that the entry for apollumi in the linked online lexicon is substantially different than BAGD your argument about the date of BAGD is intentionally obfuscatory and misleading and irrelevant. And OBTW I already checked there is no substantial difference between the apolummi entries in both lexicons.
    .....Just for you I am posting the complete entry for apolummi from BDAG.
    ἀπόλλυμι for its conjug. s. B-D-F §101 (s.v. ὄλλυμι); W-S. §14, 18; Rob. 317; fut. ἀπολέσω Hs 8, 7, 5; Att. ἀπολῶ 1 Cor 1:19 (Is 29:14; ParJer 1:1, 8); 1 aor. ἀπώλεσα; 1 pf. ἀπολώλεκα. Mid.: fut. ἀπολοῦμαι Lk 13:3; 2 aor. ἀπωλόμην; the 2 pf. ἀπόλωλα functions as a pf. mid.; ptc. ἀπολωλώς (Hom.+).

    to cause or experience destruction

    ⓐ act. ruin, destroy

    α. of pers. (Sir 10:3) Mk 1:24; Lk 4:34. W. ref. to eternal destruction μὴ ἐκεῖνον ἀπόλλυε do not bring about his ruin Ro 14:15. Esp. kill, put to death (Gen 20:4; Esth 9:6 v.l.; 1 Macc 2:37; Jos., C. Ap. 1, 122; Mel., P. 84, 635 [Ch.] τὸν ἐχθρόν σου) Hs 9, 26, 7. παιδίον Mt 2:13; Jesus 12:14; 27:20; Mk 3:6; 11:18; Lk 19:47; B 12:5; the wicked tenants κακοὺς κακῶς ἀ. (s. κακός 1a) he will put the evildoers to a miserable death Mt 21:41. τοὺς γεωργούς Mk 12:9; Lk 20:16; τ. φονεῖς Mt 22:7; τ. μὴ πιστεύσαντας those who did not believe Jd 5; πάντας Lk 17:27, 29. W. σῶσαι (like Chariton 2, 8, 1) Js 4:12; Hs 9, 23, 4. Of eternal death (Herm. Wr. 4, 7; Tat. 11:2 ἀπώλεσεν ἡμᾶς τὸ αὐτέξουσιον) ψυχὴν κ. σῶμα ἀ. ἐν γεέννῃ Mt 10:28; ψυχήν B 20:1; τ. ψυχάς Hs 9, 26, 3 (cp. Sir 20:22).

    β. w. impers. obj. ἀ. τ. σοφίαν τ. σοφῶν destroy the wisdom of the wise 1 Cor 1:19 (Is 29:14). ἀ. τ. διάνοιαν destroy the understanding Hm 11:1 (cp. Just., D. 93, 1 τὰς φυσικὰς ἐννοίας).

    γ. without obj. J 10:10.

    ⓑ mid. perish, be ruined

    α. of pers. perish, die (schol. on Nicander, Ther. 188 ἀπόλλυται ὁ ἀνήρ=the man dies; Tat. 21, 2 τοὺς ἀνθρώπους … ἀπόλλυσθαι) 1 Cl 51:5; 55:6; B 5:4, 12; D 16:5; Hs 6, 2, 1f. As a cry of anguish ἀπολλύμεθα we are perishing! (Epict. 2, 19, 16 [in a storm-tossed vessel]; PPetr II, 4 [1], 4f νυνὶ δὲ ἀπολλύμεθα) Mt 8:25; Mk 4:38; Lk 8:24 (Arrian, Peripl. 3, 3 of disaster that the stormy sea brings to the seafarer). ἐν μαχαίρῃ ἀ. die by the sword Mt 26:52. λιμῷ of hunger (Ezk 34:29) Lk 15:17. τῇ ἀντιλογίᾳ τοῦ Κόρε Jd 11c (because of 11a and b it should perh. = be corrupted; cp. Polyb. 32, 23, 6). ὑπό τινος (Hdt. 5. 126; Dio Chrys. 13 [7], 12) ὑπὸ τ. ὄφεων killed by the snakes 1 Cor 10:9; cp. vs. 10. Abs. of a people perish J 11:50. Of individuals (Lev 23:30) Ac 5:37; 2 Pt 3:9; 1 Cl 12:6; 39:5 (Job 4:20).—Esp. of eternal death (cp. Ps 9:6f; 36:20; 67:3; 72:27; 82:18; 91:10; Is 41:11) J 3:16; 17:12. ἀπολέσθαι εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα perish forever 10:28 (Bar 3:3 ἡμεῖς ἀπολλύμενοι τὸν αἰῶνα). ἀνόμως ἀ. Ro 2:12; μωρῶς ἀ. IEph 17:2 (cp. ἀσκόπως Just., D. 8, 4); ἐν καυχήσει because of boasting ITr 4:1; cp. IPol 5:2. Abs. 1 Cor 8:11; 15:18; 2 Cl 17:1.—οἱ ἀπολλύμενοι (opp. οἱ σῳζόμενοι, as in Plut., Mor. 469d) those who are lost 1 Cor 1:18; 2 Cor 2:15; 4:3; 2 Th 2:10; 2 Cl 1:4; 2:5. For this τὸ ἀπολωλός Lk 19:10 (Mt 18:10 v.l.—Ezk 34:4, 16). τὰ ἀπολλύμενα 2 Cl 2:7 (cp. SIG 417, 9 τὰ τε ἀπολωλότα ἐκ τ. ἱεροῦ ἀνέσωσαν). S. also 3b end.

    β. of things be lost, pass away, be ruined (Jos., Bell. 2, 650 of Jerusalem; Tat. 17, 2 πάθος … ἀπολλύμενον) of bursting wineskins Mt 9:17; Mk 2:22; Lk 5:37; fading beauty Js 1:11; transitory beauty of gold 1 Pt 1:7. AcPl Ha 2, 24; [χρυσὸς]| γὰρ ἀπόλλυται 9:8f; passing splendor Rv 18:14 (w. ἀπό as Jer 10:11; Da 7:17). Of earthly food J 6:27; spoiled honey Hm 5, 1, 5; σαρκὸς ἀπολλυμένης AcPlCor 2:15. Of the heavens which, like the earth, will pass away Hb 1:11 (Ps 101:27). Of the end of the world Hv 4, 3, 3, Of the way of the godless, which is lost in darkness B 11:7 (Ps 1:6). μὴ … τὸ μνημόσυνον [ὑμῶν]| ἀπόλιτε (read ἀπόληται) AcPl Ha 1, 22f.

    to fail to obtain what one expects or anticipates, lose out on, lose (X., Pla.+; PPetr III, 51, 5; POxy 743, 23; PFay 111, 3ff; Sir 6:3; 9:6; 27:16 al.; Tob 7:6 BA; 4 Macc 2:14; Tat. 8, τὸν ἐρώμενον; 15, 1) τ. μισθόν lose the reward Mt 10:42; Mk 9:41; Hs 5, 6, 7. δραχμήν (Dio Chrys. 70 [20], 25) Lk 15:8f; ἀ. ἃ ἠργασάμεθα lose what we have worked for 2J 8. διαθήκην B 4:7, 8. τὴν ζωὴν τ. ἀνθρώπων Hm 2:1; cp. Hs 8, 6, 6; 8, 7, 5; 8, 8, 2f and 5. τὴν ἐλπίδα m 5, 1, 7.

    to lose someth. that one already has or be separated from a normal connection, lose, be lost

    ⓐ act. w. colloq. flavor ἵνα πᾶν ὃ δέδωκέν μοι μή ἀπολέσω ἐξ αὐτοῦ that I should lose nothing of all that he has given me J 6:39 (B-D-F §466, 3 on Semitic assoc.; Rob. 437; 753).—ἀ. τὴν ψυχήν (cp. Sir 20:22) lose one’s life Mt 10:39; 16:25; Mk 8:35; Lk 9:24; 17:33; cp. J 12:25. For this ἀ. ἑαυτόν lose oneself Lk 9:25 (similar in form is Tyrtaeus [VII b.c.], Fgm. 8 Diehl2 lines 11–14: ‘One who risks his life in battle has the best chance of saving it; one who flees to save it is most likely to lose it’).

    ⓑ mid. (Antiphon: Diels, Vorsokrat. 87, Fgm. 54 ἀπολόμενον ἀργύριον; X., Symp. 1, 5; 1 Km 9:3; Tat. 9, 2) ISm 10:1. Of falling hair Lk 21:18; Ac 27:34; a member or organ of the body Mt 5:29f; remnants of food J 6:12. Of wine that has lost its flavor Hm 12, 5, 3.— Of sheep gone astray Mt 10:6; 15:24; Lk 15:4, 6; B 5:12 (cp. Jer 27:6; Ezk 34:4; Ps 118:176). Of a lost son Lk 15:24 (Artem. 4, 33 ἡ γυνὴ … τ. υἱὸν ἀπώλεσε καὶ … εὗρεν αὐτόν); of humanity in general ἀπολλύμενος ἐζητήθη ἵνα ζωοποιηθῇ διὰ τῆς υἱοθεσίας when lost, humanity was sought, so that it might regain life through acceptance into sonship AcPlCor 2:8 (cp. 1bα.—JSchniewind, D. Gleichn. vom verl. Sohn ’40). ἀ. θεῷ be lost to God Hs 8, 6, 4 (cod. A for ἀπέθανον).—B. 758. DELG s.v. ὄλλυμι. M-M. TW.[1]

    [1] Arndt, W., Danker, F. W., Bauer, W., & Gingrich, F. W. (2000). A Greek-English lexicon of the New Testament and other early Christian literature (3rd ed., pp. 115–116). Chicago: University of Chicago Press.​
     
  19. Dorothy Mae

    Dorothy Mae Well-Known Member

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    If destruction is everlasting it isn’t over ever. Now these hated the presence of the Lord so that too is their desire. No punishment occurs when men’s desires are met.

    Ever read what God commanded some to do? Ever read about Sodom? Pretty brutal end. Do you think God is a wimp? Do you know He has commanded war? Hand to hand combat, every minute brutal.

    When Jesus took a WHIP and used it in men, it was brutal. Words would have been meek and mild.
     
  20. ClementofA

    ClementofA Well-Known Member Supporter

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    That would be properly listed as BAG (1957). BAGD is the 1975 revision. BDAG is the 2000-2002 revision.

    You've posted that before. Nothing there resembled what you posted that allegedly was quoted from BAG.

    Why don't you post the entire BAG (1957) entry so everyone can see all the changes that have been made.

    The B in BAG, BAGD & BDAG stands for Walter Bauer (1877-1960), a German who lived under Hitler's Germany that wished to exterminate what was considered lesser human beings & called them subhuman.

    "However, even as Bauer's theories have taken hold among the public, biblical scholars have increasingly found problems with Bauer's thesis. Today, a majority of biblical scholars regard Bauer's theories as being refuted."

    " Betz investigated Bauer's claims for Egypt, and found he reversed the actual facts. Flora rejects Bauer's claims about Paul being a tolerant apostle, since it is clear Paul did find certain ideas heretical. Heresy was a concept he inherited from Judaism, and Paul sternly warns his churches against those with heterodox beliefs."

    "Litfin points out that Bauer ignored the all-important Christian creeds..."

    "Alexander and Smither dig into the region Bauer ignored: North Africa, an area that quickly became Christian, and rigorous Christian at that, after about 180 AD. They quickly discern that Bauer's theories do not pan out...

    "Thompson has a fine time overturning Bauer's claim that the Roman church was in charge from the first, and controlling the orthodoxy of other city churches by bribes. Yes, bribes, how believable. People who would allow a leopard to devour them before they would give a pinch of incense to the emperor could be bribed?"

    https://www.amazon.ca/Orthodoxy-Heresy-Early-Christian-Contexts/dp/1610975049

    "... for Bauer, there was no such thing as Christianity (singular) during this time, but only Christianities (plural). And each of these Christianities, argues Bauer, had its own set of books. Each had its own writings that it valued and thought were Scripture. After the dust settled, one particular group, and their books, won the theological war. But, why should we think these are the right books? These are just the books of the theological winners."

    "Bauer’s thesis has seen a strong resurgence in recent years, particularly in the writings of scholars like Elaine Pagels, Bart Ehrman, and Helmut Koester. And it is the basis for a very common misconception about the NT Canon, namely that there was very little agreement over the books that made it into the canon until the fourth or fifth century. Before that, we are told, early Christianity was somewhat of a literary free for all. No one could agree on much of anything."

    "Although Bauer’s thesis still dominates the academic landscape, scholars have begun to respond. Andreas Köstenberger and I co-authored The Heresy of Orthodoxy (Crossway, 2010) to address the cogency of the Bauer thesis. And I am also pleased to see a new book that has just come out that is doing the same. Paul Hartog has just published Orthodoxy and Heresy in Early Christian Contexts: Reconsidering the Bauer Thesis (Pickwick, 2015). Hartog, as the editor, has gathered together a number of scholars to interact with different aspects of Bauer’s thesis."

    "Here is the description on the back cover:

    " "Eighty years ago, Walter Bauer promulgated a bold and provocative thesis about early Christianity. He argued that many forms of Christianity started the race, but one competitor pushed aside the others, until this powerful ”orthodox” version won the day. The victors re-wrote history, marginalizing all other perspectives and silencing their voices, even though the alternatives possessed equal right to the title of normative Christianity. Bauer’s influence still casts a long shadow on early Christian scholarship. Were heretical movements the original forms of Christianity? Did the heretics outnumber the orthodox? Did orthodox heresiologists accurately portray their opponents? And more fundamentally, how can one make any objective distinction between ”heresy” and ”orthodoxy”? Is such labeling merely the product of socially situated power? Did numerous, valid forms of Christianity exist without any validating norms of Christianity? This collection of essays, each written by a relevant authority, tackles such questions with scholarly acumen and careful attention to historical, cultural-geographical, and socio-rhetorical detail. Although recognizing the importance of Bauer’s critical insights, innovative methodologies, and fruitful suggestions, the contributors expose numerous claims of the Bauer thesis (in both original and recent manifestations) that fall short of the historical evidence." "

    "Here are the endorsements (including my own)...

    " "”Modern scholars continue to be entranced by Walter Bauer’s thesis that earliest Christianity was wildly diverse with no clear orthodoxy or heresy. Indeed, it is Bauer’s thesis that has provided the foundation for many of the modern attacks on the integrity of the Bible. Thus, I am thankful for this outstanding collection of essays aimed at refuting Bauer’s thesis and setting the record straight about what earliest Christianity was really like. With clarity and thoroughness, these essays sweep away the cloud of doubt raised by Bauer and shine fresh light on how Christianity developed in the earliest centuries.” –Michael J. Kruger, President, Reformed Theological Seminary, Charlotte, NC –Wipf and Stock Publishers" "

    https://www.michaeljkruger.com/a-new-book-on-orthodoxy-and-heresy-in-early-christianity/
    https://www.jstor.org/stable/1509492?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents


    Irenaeus of Lyons: Identifying Christianity
    By John Behr (p.5 ff)

    "[Walter Bauer claimed] that Christianity was a diverse phenomenon from the beginning, that ‘varieties of Christianity’ arose around the Mediterranean, and that in some places what would later be called ‘heretical’ was initially normative. [...] Although some of Bauer’s reconstructions are inaccurate and have been dropped, the idea that Christianity was originally a diverse phenomenon has now been generally accepted."

    https://books.google.ca/books?id=isxoAgAAQBAJ&pg=PA5&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q&f=false

    "Bauer developed his thesis that in earliest Christianity, orthodoxy and heresy do not stand in relation to one another as primary to secondary but, in many regions, heresy is the original manifestation of Christianity.[2]" https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walter_Bauer#cite_note-2
     
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