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Showing posts from May, 2008

What the Bible Teaches about the Destiny of the Wicked

The destiny of the wicked in eternity is commonly referred to as Hell. The English word “hell” is used in the New Testament to translate three different Greek words: gehenna γεέννα (Matt. 5:22, 29-30; 10:28; 18:9; 23:15, 33; Mk. 9:43, 45, 47; Lk. 12:5; Jas. 3:6), hades ᾅδης (Matt. 11:23; 16:18; Lk. 10:15; 16:23; Acts 2:27, 31; Rev. 1:18; 6:8; 20:13-14), and Tartarus ταρταρόω (2 Peter 2:4). Other terms denoting the place where the wicked are punished include “the furnace of fire” (Matt. 13:42, 50), “eternal fire” (Matt. 18:8; 25:41; Jude 1:7), “the lake of fire” (Rev. 19:20; 20:10, 14, 15), “the outer darkness” (Matt. 8:12; 22:13; 25:30), and “the blackness of darkness” or “utter darkness” (Jude 1:13).

Hades is described in Luke 16:23ff as a place of (1) self-awareness, (2) torment/agony in flames, (3) memory and remorse, (4) perception of Paradise, and (5) separation from God and the righteous by a great chasm. It is the temporary holding place for the wicked dead until the Great Whit…