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Posted on 04/26/2009 9:11:06 PM PDT by GonzoII


Father Martin von Cochem was born at Cochem, on the Moselle,
in the year 1625, and died at Waghausel in 1712.

“Remember thy last end, and thou shalt never sin.”


Nihil Obstat: Thomas L Kinkead,  Censor Liborium
Imprimatur: Michael Augustine --- Archbishop of New York (New York October 5, 1899)

Copyright, 1899, by Benziger Brothers


IV. Some Other Torments of Hell.

IT is the opinion of many that some of the reprobates will be doomed among many other intolerable pains, to endure a most fearfully intense cold.

The venerable Bede relates the following anecdote of a man whose name was Trithelmus. This man was dangerously sick, and one night he was thought to be dead. The next morning he recovered consciousness, to the astonishment of all who were with him, and rose from his sick bed, saying that God had granted him a prolongation of days, in order that he might lead a different life to that which he had hitherto led.

After dividing his property amongst his children, and giving a portion of it to the poor, he entered upon an excessively different mode of life. Shutting himself up in a small tent beside a river, he spent his days and nights in weeping. In winter time he plunged up to the throat into the icy waters of the river, and then, shivering and benumbed by the cold, he immersed himself in hot water, a proceeding which caused him such agony that he could not restrain his cries.

When questioned as to the reason of his strange conduct, and how he could possibly bear the sudden alternations of extreme heat and extreme cold, he replied: "I have seen worse things than that." "What didst thou see?" the others asked him.  And he replied: "I have seen how the unhappy souls in another world are cast out of a raging fire into icy cold, and from icy cold back into the burning flames. When I realize what they have to endure, I count my slight sufferings as nothing."

This anecdote, related by so grave and holy a man as venerable Bede, shows how terrible indeed are the torments of Hell.

Christ speaks to us of the darkness of Hell in these solemn words: "Bind his hands and feet and cast him into the exterior darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth" (Matt. xxii. 13). Our Lord speaks of the darkness of Hell as exterior darkness, the most appalling, the most fearful that can be. A traveller who has lost his way in a forest and is benighted, feels a nameless terror coming over him.

Now there is a land which is covered with the shadow of death, where no order, but an eternal horror reigns. That land is Hell. An oppressive gloom weighs upon the lost; an indescribably terrible darkness prevails.

In this world sick people dread nothing more than the night, because the time seems to pass so slowly to them, and their pain seems doubly wearisome. They count the hours, and each one appears as long as the night. What will it be for the denizens of Hell, where thick darkness holds sway, and night never gives place to daylight?

In this horrible darkness the damned lie helpless as blind men, or as those who have had their eyes cruelly put out. They see nothing, for the acrid smoke stings their eyes, and the poisonous fumes of sulphur destroy their sight. We know how dense this smoke is from the account given by St. John: "To him (Satan) was given the key of the bottomless pit (Hell). And he opened the bottomless pit; and the smoke of the pit arose as the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened with the smoke of the pit" (Apoc. ix. 2). And again: "They shall be tormented with fire and brimstone, and the smoke of their torments shall ascend up forever and ever; neither have they rest day or night" (Apoc. xiv. u.)

These are indeed terrible threats, and this prophecy foretells in the plainest terms what will be the fate of those who are servants of sin and of the devil. They shall be tormented with fire and brimstone to such a degree that the smoke of their torment shall ascend forever and ever. O fearful words! O torture inexpressible!

Consider, O misguided sinner, what thy feelings would be if thou wert confined for one single day in this dark and noisome dungeon. Thou knowest how disagreeable pungent smoke is to the eyes and nostrils ; in fact, no one can remain in it for a quarter of an hour without being asphyxiated and half blinded. If this is so on earth, what will it be in Hell?

The existence of the damned is more like death than life; it is a living death, an everlasting, unlimited torture and misery. And since we are told that the smoke of their torment goes up forever, it follows of necessity that complete darkness must prevail in Hell. In connection with this subject, venerable Bede relates the experiences of the man Trithelmus (of whom mention has already been made) whilst he lay in a trance, and was supposed to be dead. On recovering consciousness, amongst other things he narrated the following: "I was conducted by a being clothed in shining garments through a country quite unknown to me, until we came to a region enveloped in thick darkness, that made me shudder with fear and horror. I could distinguish nothing but the figure of my guide. As we penetrated deeper and deeper into this obscurity, I perceived in the midst of the darkness an abyss of immense extent filled with smoke and a lurid glare, the sight of which caused my hair to stand on end with terror. From this abyss proceeded piteous wailing, which sounded as if a number of men and women were being put to cruel torture and death.

"But the worst was that my guide vanished, leaving me alone in this terrible spot. I cannot describe the agonized apprehension that took possession of me; in vain I looked around in the hope of finding succour or solace. The terror I felt was so great that I thought I should have died.

"When I looked down into the black abyss, I was afraid lest I should fall into it, and be lost, body and soul. For with the lurid flames that rose not of the abyss there came burning sparks that fell back into it with a deafening noise, besides masses of sulphurous smoke -like clouds that seemed as if they might at any moment sweep me down with them into the depths of the fiery gulf. These were all lost souls which were driven upwards like sparks from burning logs by the force of the underground fire.

"God alone knows what I suffered; a cold sweat broke out all over me. Whilst I stood there in this agony, not knowing which way to turn, there sounded from far above my head peals of laughter, and mingled with the laughter bitter weeping and howling. As this noise came nearer, I saw a number of devils who had with them five helpless souls whom they were persecuting and tormenting. The devils were in exultation, mocking and laughing; the souls were in despair, uttering lamentations and cries of poignant anguish. Imagine what my feelings were when I heard their cries, and observed that the accursed devils were coming nearer and nearer.

When they came close up to me, I was so over powered with terror that I thought I should have fainted, and I believe if God had not strengthened me, I should have died there and then.

"For the demons glared at me with their fiery eyes in so alarming a fashion, and the poor souls called on me so pitifully for help, that I was divided between fear and compassion, and my heart was as if it must break. When the souls had been driven past me, they were precipitated into the depths of the abyss by the evil spirits with such violence that Heaven and earth seemed to tremble, and such a cloud of sparks flew upwards that I was afraid they would cover me. Finally, to my great grief and alarm, a number of evil spirits approached me, breathing rage and fury, and making as if they would drag me down with them into the black abyss.

"Then in abject terror I wept and wailed and implored help from some quarter; for in this dense darkness I beheld nothing but mocking devils, the yawning gulf and leaping flames, and knew not whither to turn for deliverance.

"When my distress was at its height, my guide reappeared; he rescued me from my enemies, and conducted me out of that dark, foul, horrible place. He told me moreover that I was to return to my body, and that I was to make known to as many as possible of my fellow-men, the existence of this land of terrible darkness."

In addition to the sinister obscurity that prevails in Hell, caused by the stifling smoke that rises in dense clouds from the lake of brimstone, there is the presence of frightful demons who increase the pain and torment of the damned.

We read in the legend of St. Anthony the Hermit, that the demons frequently appeared to him under various forms, plaguing and frightening him in indescribable ways. Sometimes they took the shape of wild beasts, lions, bears, dragons or savage dogs; at other times they appeared in human form, that of fierce-looking men, beautiful women, or monsters of hideous aspect. Sometimes they beat and maltreated him so barbarously that they left him half dead; sometimes they caused him such terror by their strange spectral apparitions, that had not God and his Angel guardian come to his aid, he would have incontinently expired.

Now if they did all this to a man of Saintly life, over whom they had no rightful power, what will they not do in Hell to the ungodly sinners who are completely at their mercy?

Doubtless these diabolical spectres, assuming the shape of wild animals, will fall upon the wretched sinners and mishandle them shamefully. This will be a fresh misery for them. No one can imagine what new terrors and torments the ingenuity of these spirits of Hell will devise to harass the damned and pour out on them their devilish malice.

If thou dost fear this darkness, and all the horrors attending it, see that thou fear the works of darkness, whereof Christ says: "Every one that doeth evil hateth the light, and cometh not to the light, that his works may not be reproved" (John iii. 20). 

But if thou lovest darkness, and seekest the dark ness that thou mayst sin with greater impunity, it will be no act of injustice on God s part to cast thee into everlasting darkness, and at thy death to say to the devils: " Because throughout his life he has loved darkness and the works of darkness, bind his hands and his feet and cast him into the exterior darkness, where shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth."

Would that all obdurate sinners could see this, and consider the frightful torments which await the careless and indifferent. For in that wherein we have sinned we shall also be punished. And as in our own day there are so many tepid and negligent Christians who have not the slightest zeal for religion or religious exercises, we bid them beware lest they be one day cast into Hell-fire at the command of Him who calls Himself a jealous God, and who is alone to be feared because He can " destroy both body and soul into Hell."

Wherefore consider, O cold and careless Christians, what a fate is before you. Truly, were you to reflect upon these frightful torments, you would at once enter upon a new life. Instead of being tepid, sluggish, lax, cold Christians, you would quickly become zealous, active, scrupulous, fervent servants of God.

Away, then, with all tepidity, all indifference in the great business of our salvation. Whosoever thou art who readest this, resolve to fulfil thy duties as a Christian with all earnestness. Approach the sacraments more frequently than thou hast done hitherto; hear Mass more frequently than hitherto, be more instant and fervent in prayer than hitherto.  Think more often of God and of the last things. Thus thou wilt surmount the indifference, the coldness that has crept over thee, thou wilt make God thy friend, the hope of eternal felicity will rise up within thee and become a blessed certainty. God grant that by His grace it may be so with thee and with me!

TOPICS: Catholic; Theology
KEYWORDS: thefourlastthings
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 Who is like unto God?........ Lk:10:18:
 And he said to them: I saw Satan like lightning falling from heaven.
1 posted on 04/26/2009 9:11:06 PM PDT by GonzoII
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To: GonzoII
The fellows of his crime, the followers rather
(Far other once beheld in bliss) condemn'd
For ever now to have thir lot in pain,
Millions of Spirits for his fault amerc't
Of Heav'n, and from Eternal Splendors flung
For his revolt, yet faithfull how they stood,
Thir Glory witherd. As when Heavens Fire
Hath scath'd the Forrest Oaks, or Mountain Pines,
With singed top thir stately growth though bare
Stands on the blasted Heath. He now prepar'd
To speak; whereat thir doubl'd Ranks they bend
From wing to wing, and half enclose him round
With all his Peers: attention held them mute.

2 posted on 04/26/2009 9:58:28 PM PDT by dr_lew
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To: dr_lew

What is this quote from?

It looks VERY interesting.

3 posted on 04/26/2009 10:39:39 PM PDT by Amadeo
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To: GonzoII

Thanks for posting this.

I am a Christian but I do lack understanding. I am not questioning God but I am seeking a better understanding. We are told to seek the Truth. I know that Jesus is Truth.

A few things I don’t understand are:

— We are told of a loving and forgiving God. We are also told to be forgiving.

We are told that sinners will be thrown into this eternal lake of fire. Is God never going to be forgiving of those that are thrown into this lake of fire?

— We are told that we’re all God’s children. I don’t have children but if I did, I would love them enough and do everything I possibly could to keep them going to a place like hell. I know Jesus died on the cross for us over 2000 years ago. I wish things were clearer to all of us (people of different faiths, upbringings, etc.) to help us avoid such a place.

I know God loves all of us. Personally, however, I couldn’t put even a rat in a fire and torture it. I certainly couldn’t imagine doing so to someone I loved.

— You mentioned that God is a jealous God. I have heard this several times and I’ve also heard we are supposed to be more Christ-like (I believe that God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit are one). I don’t believe God wants us to be jealous.

— We are told that we have “free will.” Therefore, we’re in control of our fate. None of us ever had total free weill because none of us ever asked to be created. There are even some people that wish they were never born.

I hope I don’t come across as questioning God. As I’ve said, I am a Christian. I am only hoping to strengthen my faith with better understanding.

I’ll also mention that I am not Catholic. I am Protestant. If I ever changed from Protestant (which I’ve given some consideration), I believe I would look mostly at becoming a Catholic.

These may be simple questions to you but they’re things that I don’t fully understand. I’ll also accept that there will always things that I don’t fully understand.

Again, I am just trying to better understand to solidify my faith. Any help with that is greatly appreciated. Thanks.

4 posted on 04/26/2009 10:40:42 PM PDT by boycott
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To: Amadeo

It IS very interesting! A jealously guarded secret :-)

It’s Milton’s Paradise Lost, Book I line 606

5 posted on 04/26/2009 10:48:41 PM PDT by dr_lew
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To: GonzoII


6 posted on 04/26/2009 11:45:40 PM PDT by GOP Poet
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To: boycott

Many of the questions posed are common and answers are easily understood by study of His Word, and His immutable nature.

God is perfectly Holy. His Holiness is comprised of His Perfect Righteousness and His Perfect Justice. It is immutable, never changing.

This feature of God is revealed to us in the Tabernacle, in the Holy of Holies, where the Arc of the Covenant is covered with a Mercy Seat, upon which are two guilded Cherubim facing one another, one representing His Perfect Justice, the other His Perfect Righteousness.

Whenever something unrighteous is presented before God, His Perfect Justice demands Perfect Righteousness. In converse, whenever injustice is presented before Perfect Righeousness, Perfect Righteousness demands Perfect Justice. They complement each other in His Perfect Holiness in maintaining His immutable essence.

In your query, “— We are told of a loving and forgiving God. We are also told to be forgiving.—We are told that sinners will be thrown into this eternal lake of fire. Is God never going to be forgiving of those that are thrown into this lake of fire?”; consider His immutable nature.

Now let’s also consider what He has provided for man to resolve the original sin of Adam.

In order to clearly express what has occurred historically, we need to clarify several issues. One is judgment, the other is forgiveness, and another is grace. Many people confuse judgment, forgiveness and grace. Remember that God is omniscient and immutable. He doesn’t overlook anything, but He also provides for us.

On the Cross, the sins of all mankind were imputed to our Lord Christ Jesus. While on the Cross, our Lord Christ Jesus was Judged for all of mankind’s sins. Each and every human personal sin ever committed or to be committed was imputed to Him, while He was on the Cross. (Hebrews and Romans are outstanding studies of these issues.)

The Cross was all about Judgment.

Forgiveness is later, a different issue.

Forgiveness is now available, after the Cross, for every person who is out of fellowship with God.

For the unbeliever, forgiveness occurs instantly at the moment of faith alone in Christ alone. This is because of Rom 3:22, where that same faith is identical to the faith of Christ and was found to be righteous. When God sees something righteous in us, He is free, because of the judgment of all our sins already, to give us eternal life.

There are many things given us at the moment of salvation, upon faith alone in Christ alone, one of which is a regenerated human spirit. Another is the forgiveness of all pre-salvation sins when we return to God and confess our sins to Him. This occurs at the moment of initial faith alone in Christ alone for the unbeliever.

For the believer, anytime we sin, knowingly or unknowingly, we step out of fellowship with God the Holy Spirit, also known as ‘grieving the Spirit’. This doesn’t remove His indwelling, but it does cause us to no longer walk with Him, in fellowship with Him. In order to return into fellowship, a forgiveness must occur for post-salvation sin.

The mechanism for this is given in 1stJohn 1:9, whereby when we return to Him, and confess our sin to Him, He is sure and just to forgive us our sin.

Now let’s return to the original issue of the Lake of Fire and the casting of unbelievers into the Lake of Fire for all eternity future.

God, in His immutable nature is still Perfectly Holy. There is nothing which requires God to remain exposed or allow anything evil in His presence.

In the future, and for every human who suffers the first death, there remains a soul and possibly a spirit which continues to endure. Where that existence is placed is a different issue. The Kingdom of God and Kingdom of Heaven are possible places for the righteous to be placed.

If that soul/spirit has anything unrighteous in it, then it is immediately categorized as sinful, missing the mark, not righteous. This is the same category as Adam was first placed upon the His sin in the Garden of Eden. That sin immediately implied a spiritual death, a state of existence involving separation, a separation from God the Holy Spirit.

After the Cross, all sins have been judged, not yet forgiven, but when a soul/spirit is now judged and found to have anything whatsoever righteous in it, God by His Perfect Holiness will also recognize that righteousness. When He sees in our hearts, faith in Christ, by Rom 3:22, we know He also has found something righteous in us.

So just as by one sin, all mankind was condemned, likewise by one Perfect Sacrifice on the Cross, all mankind has salvation now made available.

Unlike Adam before the fall, man today is born condemned and is an initial state of condemnation. We require salvation prior to being returned into fellowship with God.

For the unbeliever who never places faith in Him, upon the first death, there no longer is a mechanism to place something righteous in his human soul/spirit. His human soul is still born corrupt from Adam’s original sin. That human soul is then later judged for righteousness.

Good and evil were not judged on the Cross. The sins of humanity were judged on the Cross.

Once it was complete, it was finished in the sense of never having to be performed again.

That is why when an unbeliever, for the first time exhibits simple faith alone in Christ alone, God is free to instantly regenerate that now believer’s human spirit and give him newness of life. It happens in a split second, immediately.

This is not the case of good and evil. Good and Evil were not judged on the Cross. Their resolution occurs overt time.

There will come a point in time, though, when they also will be resolved. When God judges all things, those which are righteous will be sorted out from those which are unrighteous.

That which is found to be wanting in anything righteous by Divine standards (not an Adamic nature, man’s standards), will then be placed in an appropriate place, so as not to cause future evil amongst those that are righteous and as punishment for their evil.

That place is the same place originally designed for the disposition of the fallen angels, namely, the Lake of Fire.

Instead of us asking how a loving God could cast any of His creation in the Lake of Fire, a more probing and powerful question is, “How can a loving God, continually endure the presence of evil, when He has already provided a mechanism for salvation?”

The answer becomes evident when we observe His Holy nature. It is immutable and perfectly righteous and just. He provides the solution and further in His love and grace, provides for His own.

7 posted on 04/27/2009 12:14:09 AM PDT by Cvengr (Adversity in life and death is inevitable. Thru faith in Christ, stress is optional.)
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To: boycott
Is God never going to be forgiving of those that are thrown into this lake of fire?

The question makes numerous assumptions, misframing the real question.

Forgiveness is not grace, nor is it judgment. Righteousess is preserved in Divine Judgment and in His very real forgiveness.

1Jn 1:9 (9) If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Since we have been told the second death is identified with the Great White Throne Judgment of those who are unbelievers, one could possibly conclude those in that situation will not be able to confess their sin and turn back to God.

8 posted on 04/27/2009 12:23:34 AM PDT by Cvengr (Adversity in life and death is inevitable. Thru faith in Christ, stress is optional.)
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To: boycott
You mentioned that God is a jealous God. I have heard this several times and I’ve also heard we are supposed to be more Christ-like (I believe that God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit are one). I don’t believe God wants us to be jealous.

Some more confusion arises here, possibly from the vocabulary being used.

We are not to be covetous, making something other than God an idol of our worship in the devotion of our thinking. God, though, remains immutably Holy. When something is of Him, He doesn't like it being unrighteously removed from Him.

Think about how you feel if a loved one dies.

You might be assured they have gone to a better place, but still you grieve. It is natural, because no matter how righteous things are, we still are removed from having fellowship with that person, by no fault of our own.

That really is the same thing God feels, any time we ever sin. We essentially and very really 'grieve' the Holy Spirit. For God, that is the same feeling as we have whenever we suffer the loss of a loved one. He suffers the same way each and every time we ever sin.

Accordingly, He is indeed a jealous God, because He already has done everything possible to provide for the return of a righteous and just fellowship between God and man. All we have to do is accept it and it happens.

Perhaps we should be more jealous of our remaining in fellowship with Him by resisting any and all forms of temptation.

9 posted on 04/27/2009 12:32:22 AM PDT by Cvengr (Adversity in life and death is inevitable. Thru faith in Christ, stress is optional.)
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To: boycott
We are told that we have “free will.” Therefore, we’re in control of our fate. None of us ever had total free weill because none of us ever asked to be created. There are even some people that wish they were never born.

Another question based upon misplaced assumptions.

It is false to say we never had total free will because none of us asked to be created. This presumes our existence prior to our existence. It begs the question, therefore any will attributed to us at that time doesn't qualify as will or volition, for it has no object on which to rest the volition.

It is correct to say, some people wish they were never born, but such wishing is a consequence of their volition and denial of what God has provided for them.

10 posted on 04/27/2009 12:37:14 AM PDT by Cvengr (Adversity in life and death is inevitable. Thru faith in Christ, stress is optional.)
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To: GonzoII

So when the Bible talks about everlasting life and hell which is emphasized?

That the fires of hell/lake of fire burn forever?

That the result of being thrown into either of the above results in being forever separated from God?

That those who are thrown into hell/lake of fire are tormented forever?

11 posted on 04/27/2009 12:41:49 AM PDT by ScubieNuc
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To: boycott

The questions posed are very common.

I encourage one’s search for answers to first reside in finding out what God has done to provide for us.

Those who entertain these questions, frequently have masked their minds to the very large number of worldly and counterfeit suppositions implicit in their being asked. Such is the consequence of sin in our thinking processes.

This is NOT an accusation, but an observation which is offered, because in order to answer such questions, one has to begin with something veritable, truthful, sound, and steady. Such is His Word.

The attention to such questions need not prevail from study of His Word. Note how such questions presume an ability to accuse or lead to an accusatorial position of God Himself. Whenever exposed to such a circumstance, take note for such is the modus operendi of the Adversary as opposed to the righteousness, justice, love and grace of God.

12 posted on 04/27/2009 12:45:44 AM PDT by Cvengr (Adversity in life and death is inevitable. Thru faith in Christ, stress is optional.)
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To: Cvengr

Thank you for the reply. You’ve certainly offered me a different perspective.

I guess one of the issues that I have is that I feel that God demands perfection of us. I know that God doesn’t expect us to be perfect. I guess that’s just something within me that I need to better understand. I can assure you that I am a long way from being perfect.

One thing you pointed out is that God not only considers our unrightousness but also our rightousness. I guess that is something I don’t take much into consideration.

I realize that a person cannot make it 95% of the way to Heaven. You either do or you don’t. I don’t believe there’s anywhere in between. I obviously need to take into consideration that God sees not only my unrightousness but also my rightousness. That he does forgive me of my sins when I ask for forgiveness.

I am without a doubt a sinner. I frequently ask God for forgiveness of my sins. Unfortunately for me, I often go back and commit the same sins over and over. Obviously, I am not where I need to be and need to do much better.

I was initially drawn to God out of fear. For the most part, I went to Baptist churches growing up. I went to a Methodist high school. Fear of the lake of fire is what initially drew me toward God.

I haven’t been to any church in a long time. I used to go very regularly but a few things changed that. That’s another subject and I’ll spare you that explaination in this post. Although I haven’t been in a long time, I still believe.

I’ve heard different views on hell. It is obviously something I need to study more. One of the main reasons I’ve continued to believe is because I believe in a loving God. Unfortunately for me, I’ll sometimes use this as my “green light” to sin.

I know that God has always been there. It is not God that sometimes drifts away from our relationship. It is me. I’ve been in failed relationships before and I know that this is one relationship that I would most certainly not want to fail.

Obviously, I have a long way to go in my fellowship with God. I think it’s important that I recognize that I may not have a long time to get there because life is short and eternity is a very long time.

Again, thank you for the insight. I will read over your other replies again to try to get better understanding.

13 posted on 04/27/2009 7:13:31 AM PDT by boycott
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To: boycott
That's a lot of inquiry.

I'd like to make a suggestion if I may:

I just started posting a new series in the Religion column called "Radio Replies" and it's three volumes in length.

Everyday I'll be posting a handful of questions from one of the three books, I think you'll find some answers you've been looking for.

The Radio Replies Series

Chapter One: God

Radio Replies Volume One: God’s Existence Known by Reason
Radio Replies Volume One: Nature of God
Radio Replies Volume One: Providence of God and Problem of Evil

Chapter Two: Man

Radio Replies Volume One: Nature of Man & Existence and Nature of the Soul

Regarding God being a "jealous God" just think of it like this: God made our hearts for himself, isn't it great to have an eternal lover like that?

Jn:3:16:"For God so loved the world, as to give his only begotten Son: that whosoever believeth in him may not perish, but may have life everlasting."

God can only give the best and that best is Himself.

14 posted on 04/27/2009 8:59:32 AM PDT by GonzoII ("That they may be one...Father")
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To: ScubieNuc
"So when the Bible talks about everlasting life and hell which is emphasized?"

Both are emphasized for two types of characters, the purpose is the same, to avoid hell and attain heaven.

15 posted on 04/27/2009 9:08:52 AM PDT by GonzoII ("That they may be one...Father")
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To: GonzoII

Thanks. I will certainly review the “Radio Replies.”

I don’t have the time right now because of work but I will certainly come back to review them.

I took a brief look at the links you provided and I like the way it’s laid out. I am confident it will benefit me greatly.

Again, thank you.

16 posted on 04/27/2009 9:24:12 AM PDT by boycott
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To: boycott

I totally understand where you are coming from. Until very recently, I believed Hell was a place of eternal torment, but through careful study, I no longer believe that. In order to be tormented, you need to be alive. The only way to get eternal life is through Jesus.

There are many other reasons, but one that you mentioned (came to God out of fear) is mentioned at this site:

You should check it out. It’s very well reasoned, and easy to read.

17 posted on 04/27/2009 12:17:04 PM PDT by ScubieNuc
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To: ScubieNuc


That appears to offer a different perspective. I’ll read this material along with the other articles.

I also want to be careful not to just interpret things the way I “wish” them to be.

This and the other articles should provide for some interesting reading.

18 posted on 04/27/2009 12:35:12 PM PDT by boycott
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To: ScubieNuc; boycott
"In order to be tormented, you need to be alive."

I find it hard to fathom that Christ would threaten people with hell fire if they were going to be "annihilated" and therefore not feel anything.

Mt:5:22: But I say to you, that whosoever is angry with his brother, shall be in danger of the judgment. And whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council. And whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire.

Mt:5:29: And if thy right eye scandalize thee, pluck it out and cast it from thee. For it is expedient for thee that one of thy members should perish, rather than thy whole body be cast into hell.

Mt:10:28: And fear ye not them that kill the body, and are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him that can destroy both soul and body in hell.

Lk:12:5: But I will shew you whom you shall fear: Fear ye him who, after he hath killed, hath power to cast into hell. Yea, I say to you: Fear him.



Matt. 3:12; Luke 3:17 - John the Baptist said the Lord will burn the chaff with unquenchable fire. This unquenchable fire is the state of eternal separation from God, which the Church has called "hell" for 2,000 years. Some Protestant communities no longer acknowledge the reality of hell.

Matt. 25:41 - Jesus says, "Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels."

Matt. 25:46 - Jesus says, "they will go away into eternal punishment" which is in reference to this eternal fire.

Mark 9:47-48 - Jesus refers to hell as where the worm does not die and the fire is not quenched. It lasts forever.

2 Thess. 1:6-9 - the angels will come with flaming fire and the disobedient will suffer punishment of eternal destruction. It is important to note that "destruction" does not mean "annihilation," as some Protestant denominations teach. It means eternal exclusion from the presence of God.

Jude 6-7 - the rebelling angels, and Sodom and Gomorrah, serve as an example by undergoing a punishment of eternal fire.

Rev. 14:11 - the worshipers of the beast suffer and the smoke of their torment goes up for ever and ever.

Rev. 20:10 - they're tormented in the lake of fire and brimstone day and night forever and ever.

Isaiah 33:14 - "Who of us can dwell in the everlasting fire?" This is a reference to hell which is forever.

Isaiah 66:24 - their worm shall not die and their fire shall not be quenched. We cannot fathom the pain of this eternal separation from God.

Jer. 15:14 - in my anger a fire is kindled which shall burn forever. Hell is the proper compliment to the eternal bliss of heaven.

Judith 16:17 - in the day of judgment the Lord will take vengeance on the wicked and they shall weep in pain forever. Hell is a place that sinners have prepared for themselves by rejecting God, who desires all people to be saved in His Son Jesus Christ. God sends no one to hell.



Tradition / Church Fathers

"If any one confesses Christ Jesus the Lord, but denies the God of the law and of the prophets, saying that the Father of Christ is not the Maker of heaven and earth, he has not continued in the truth any more than his father the devil, and is a disciple of Simon Magus, not of the Holy Spirit." Ignatius of Antioch, To the Philadelphians, 5 (A.D. 110).

"…Christ Jesus, our Lord, and God, and Saviour, and King, according to the will of the invisible Father, 'every knee should bow, of things in heaven,, and things in earth, and things under the earth, and that every tongue should confess' to Him, and that He should execute just judgment towards all; that He may send 'spiritual wickednesses,' and the angels who transgressed and became apostates, together with the ungodly, and unrighteous, and wicked, and profane among men, into everlasting fire; but may, in the exercise of His grace, confer immortality on the righteous, and holy, and those who have kept His commandments, and have persevered in His love, some from the beginning of their Christian course, and others from the date of their repentance, and may surround them with everlasting glory." Irenaeus, Against Heresies, 1,10,10 (A.D. 180).

"…thus also the punishment of those who do not believe the Word of God, and despise His advent, and are turned away backwards, is increased; being not merely temporal, but rendered also eternal. For to whomsoever the Lord shall say, 'Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire,' these shall be damned for ever; and to whomsoever He shall say, "Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you for eternity,' these do receive the kingdom for ever, and make constant advance in it; since there is one and the same God the Father, and His Word, who has been always present with the human race, by means indeed of various dispensations, and has wrought out many things, and saved from the beginning those who are saved, (for these are they who love God, and follow the Word of God according to the class to which they belong,) and has judged those who are judged, that is, those who forget God, and are blasphemous, and transgressors of His word." Irenaeus, Against Heresies, 4,28,2 (A.D. 180).

"But do you also, if you please, give reverential attention to the prophetic Scriptures, and they will make your way plainer for escaping the eternal punishments, and obtaining the eternal prizes of God." Theophilus of Antioch, To Autolycus, 1:14 (A.D. 181).

"[T]hese have further set before us the proofs He has given of His majesty in judgments by floods and fires, the rules appointed by Him for securing His favour, as well as the retribution in store for the ignoring, forsaking and keeping them, as being about at the end of all to adjudge His worshippers to everlasting life, and the wicked to the doom of fire at once without ending and without break, raising up again all the dead from the beginning, reforming and renewing them with the object of awarding either recompense." Tertullian, Apology, 18:3 (A.D. 197).

"Therefore after this there is neither death nor repeated resurrections, but we shall be the same that we are now, and still unchanged--the servants of God, ever with God, clothed upon with the proper substance of eternity; but the profane, and all who are not true worshippers of God, in like manner shall be consigned to the punishment of everlasting fire--that fire which, from its very nature indeed, directly ministers to their incorruptibility." Tertullian, Apology, 48:12 (A.D. 197).

"[T]he world when thou shall know what it is to live truly in heaven, when thou shalt despise that which is here esteemed to be death, when thou shalt fear what is truly death, which is reserved for those who shall be condemned to the eternal fire, which shall afflict those even to the end that are committed to it." Letter to Diognetus 10:7 (A.D. 200).

"Of which voice the justification will be seen in the awarding to each that which is just; since to those who have done well shall be assigned righteously eternal bliss, and to the lovers of iniquity shall be given eternal punishment." Hippolytus, Against the Greeks, 3 (ante A.D. 225).

"Oh,what and how great will that day be at its coming, beloved brethren, when the Lord shall begin to count up His people, and to recognize the deservings of each one by the inspection of His divine knowledge, to send the guilty to Gehenna, and to set on fire our persecutors with the perpetual burning of a penal fire, but to pay to us the reward of our faith and devotion!" Cyprian, To Thibaris, Epistle 55 (58):10 (A.D. 253).

"But, however, the sacred writings inform us in what manner the wicked are to undergo punishment. For because they have committed sins in their bodies, they will again be clothed with flesh, that they may make atonement in their bodies; and yet it will not be that flesh with which God clothed man, like this our earthly body, but indestructible, and abiding for ever, that it may be able to hold out against tortures and everlasting fire...The same divine fire, therefore, with one and the same force and power, will both burn the wicked and will form them again, and will replace as much as it shall consume of their bodies, and will supply itself with eternal nourishment ...Then they whose piety shall have been approved of will receive the reward of immortality; but they whose sins and crimes shall have been brought to light will not rise again, but will be hidden in the same darkness with the wicked, being destined to certain punishment." Lactantius, Divine Institutes, 7:21 (A.D 310).

"The real and true life then is the Father, who through the Son in the Holy Spirit pours forth as from a fountain His heavenly gifts to all; and through His love to man, the blessings of the life eternal are promised without fail to us men also. We must not disbelieve the possibility of this, but having an eye not to our own weakness but to His power, we must believe; for with God all things are possible. And that this is possible, and that we may look for eternal life, Daniel declares, And of the many righteous shall they shine as the stars for ever and ever. And Paul says, And so shall we be ever with the Lord(1): for the being for ever with the lord implies the life eternal. But most plainly of all the Saviour Himself says in the Gospel, And these shall go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into life eternal." Cyril of Jerusalem, Catechetical Lectures, 18:28 (A.D. 350).

"[I]nto eternal punishment; the just, however, into eternal life." Basil, Rules brieflyTreated, 267 (A.D. 370).

"We believe in one Catholic and Apostolic Church, and in One baptism of repenetance, and in the resurrection of the dead and the just judgment of souls and bodies, and in the kingdom of heaven, and in eternal life." Epiphanius, The Man Well Anchored, 120 (A.D. 374).

"[T]o judge the living and dead, of Whose kingdom there will be no end...look forward to the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come. Amen." Creed of Constantinople (A.D. 381).

"When you hear the word fire, you have been taught to think of a fire other than the fire we see, owing to something being added to that fire which in this there is not; for that fire is never quenched, whereas experience has discovered many ways of quenching this; and there is a great difference between a fire which can be extinguished, and one that does not admit of extinction. That fire, therefore, is something other than this. If, again, a person hears the word 'worm,' let not his thoughts, from the similarity of the term, be carried to the creature here that crawls upon the ground; for the addition that it 'dieth not' suggests the thought of another reptile than that known here. Since, then, these things are set before us as to be expected in the life that follows this, being the natural outgrowth according to the righteous judgment of God, in the life of each, of his particular disposition, it must be the part of the wise not to regard the present, but that which follows after, and to lay down the foundations for that unspeakable blessedness during this short and fleeting life, and by a good choice to wean themselves from all experience of evil, now in their lifetime here, hereafter in their eternal recompense." Gregory of Nyssa, Great Catechism, 40 (A.D. 383).

"And he said not the afflictions are so, but 'the things that are seen;' all of them, whether punishment or rest, so that we should be neither puffed up by the one nor overborne by the other. And therefore when speaking of the things to come, he said not the kingdom is eternal; but, 'the things which are not seen are eternal,' whether they be a kingdom, or again punishment; so as both to alarm by the one and to encourage by the other." John Chyrsostom, Homilies on 2nd Corinthians, 9:17,18 (c. A.D. 392).

"His fourth and last contention is that there are two classes, the sheep and the goats, the just and the unjust: that the just stand on the right hand, the other on the left: and that to the just the words are spoken: 'Come, ye blessed of my Father, and inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.' But that sinners are thus addressed: 'Depart from me, ye cursed, into the eternal fire which is prepared for the devil and his angels.' ...And as in one Gospel our Lord promises the Apostles a hundred fold, in another seven fold, for leaving children and wives, and in the world to come life eternal." Jerome, Against Jovianianus, 2:18,19 (c. A.D. 393).

"But because this is absurd, they who desire to be rid of eternal punishment ought to abstain from arguing against God, and rather, while yet there is opportunity, obey the divine commands. Then what a fond fancy is it to suppose that eternal punishment means long continued punishment, while eternal life means life without end, since Christ in the very same passage spoke of both in similar terms in one and the same sentence, 'These shall go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into life eternal!' If both destinies are "eternal," then we must either understand both as long-continued but at last terminating, or both as endless. For they are correlative,--on the one hand, punishment eternal, on the other hand, life eternal. And to say in one and the same sense, life eternal shall be endless, punishment eternal shall come to an end, is the height of absurdity. Wherefore, as the eternal life of the saints shall be endless, so too the eternal punishment of those who are doomed to it shall have no end." Augustine, City of God, 21:23 (A.D. 426).

"For there are two kinds of compunction, as you know: one that is afraid of eternal pains, the other that sighs for heavenly rewards; since the soul that is athirst for God is first moved to compunction by fear, and afterwards by love. For in the first place it is affected to tears because, while recollecting its evil doings, it fears to suffer for them eternal punishments." Gregory the Great [regn. A.D. 590-604], To Theoctista, Epistle 26 (ante A.D. 604).



Copyright 2001 - 2007 © by John Salza. All Rights Reserved.

19 posted on 04/27/2009 12:56:20 PM PDT by GonzoII ("That they may be one...Father")
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To: GonzoII

I am of the same school of thought.

I believe a lot of people “wish” it to be the other way but I believe the Bible to be rather clear.

It’s not a chance worth taking. Accepting God’s love and forgiveness is obviously the better way.

20 posted on 04/27/2009 1:51:36 PM PDT by boycott
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