Author Topic: ALL forms of Universalism are False: Hell is real and literal Eternal Torment  (Read 7163 times)

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Alumina

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Hello. I am the King James Bible Believer who has been discussing with Gary the falsehoods of any form of universalism, including "Christian" universalism. I am here on the forum to have a polite but firm Biblical-based discussion on this topic. My stance is simple and direct and based on the Words of God:

1 Jesus Christ is God and we are saved and eternally secure by faith alone in the Lord Jesus Christ alone, period. The Born-Again believer has Unconditional Eternal Security. I am totally and completely against ALL forms of "lordship salvation" which seek to add human works of obedience to eternal life which is by faith alone in Him alone. This includes the "Arminian" idea that unless you have faith in Jesus plus good works you lose your salvation, AND, the "Calvinistic" idea that unless you have faith in Jesus plus good works, you prove you were never saved or elect. BOTH camps are WRONG. Once we are saved we are to live the rest of our lives for Jesus, in order not to keep salvation or prove salvation but to honor God out of love and to build up rewards. ALL saved people will have joy in Heaven but some will have greater levels of authority and power and ability than others, depending on what we did with our lives after salvation, here on Earth. This includes both doctrine and practice, and what we did with the "Three T's: Time, Talent, Treasure. However, even the "worst" Born Again Christian is eternally secure and a child of God forever.

2 All mankind/humankind are NOT children of God automatically. ALL humans are creations of God. ONLY those who have been saved by the LORD JESUS CHRIST are "sons of God"/children of God. This includes Old Testament saints as well as Church Age saints (I am a Biblical Dispensationalist). When people say to me "God would not send His children to Hell", I agree totally. God would never do this because His children are part of Him (family wise) and God sends to Hell those who have used their free will choice to reject Jesus as their only eternal Savior. Calvinism is wrong: Jesus DID die for ALL humans, but all humans will NOT be saved. Only those who believe.


3 I have been reading some of the detailed posts on this forum. I see alot of emotionalism attempting to masquerade as Biblical evidence. Atheists do this alot: They pretend to rely on scientific or rational arguments but it all boils down to their own emotional arguments against God.    Jesus Himself warned people of Hell and the apostle Paul and others warned people of Hell. Time and time again the issue is believe. If everyone makes Heaven there was no reason for Jesus to come and die for us and go through the horror He did. He bore Hell for the believer, literally, because that was the ONLY WAY to save us. We MUST BELIEVE IN HIM and Him ALONE to be saved.

 4 I believe someone can be saved by trusting in the finished work and person of Jesus Christ and still go to Heaven even if they deny Hell, if they have trusted in HIM alone. However, some clarifications are vital: This is only if they have been deceived about it. Ie, if you have never believed in the existence of Hell why did you trust in Jesus? What are you saved FROM? Jesus is God and God IS love. Amen. But God is holy and His love includes His judgement.

One of the core problems I notice here is this:

Gary and others seem to think that because Jesus died for all, all humans will ultimately accept Jesus and be in heaven. If I am wrong, please correct me on your stance. Problem: Once the person bodilly dies and they see the truth face to face it is too late. The people in the Book of Revelation, for example, who take the Mark of the Beast have the opportunity to repent but Scripture clearly states they refuse and what do they do? They curse God all the more. These are NOT atheists, mind you, they recognize it is God sending plagues down on them and they hate Him all the more. Once someone dies lost, they are instantly hardened against God like the devils.

Why do you think Satan and the fallen angels can never and will never repent of their hatred and unbelief? Not only did Jesus not die for angels, but, they are forever set and confirmed, hardened in their hate against Him. They SAW directly and have committed the Blasphemy of the Holy Spirit. The Unforgivable SIN! It is like Charles Stanley said, a state in which you die having never believed in the Lord Jesus Christ.
There are two families in the universe: The family of God, in Jesus Christ, and the family of Satan. There is no neutrality and no middle ground. You are either a member of one or the other, spiritually. Everyone who rejects the Lord Jesus Christ is a child of Satan, no matter how outwardly nice they appear to be, and, once they die in that lost state, they are forever joined to him to burn forever with Him.

Instead of distorting Scripture out of context to make yourselves feel better, warn people that unless they turn to Jesus Christ alone as God and Savior, they will forever burn.

I do not harbor angst to you in this forum, I am here to have loving but truthful Biblical discussion and I welcome all and any comments.




Offline Molly

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It is possible to go from children of satan to children of God, isn't it?

and were by nature children of wrath Eph 2:3

Why could this happen only in this life and in this age?

Seems like a short time to get eternity right.

Is there anything that states that we have only this life span to get it right?

Remember Jesus led captivity captive when he ascended on high.

Why did those get another chance?  Weren't they already 'dead'?

He raises Lazarus from the dead.  why did he get another chance?

Offline shawn

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What I find interesting, is that you state Gary and members here resort to "emotionalism".  Looking at your last several paragraphs, you would be very hard pressed to support any of that Biblically.  Using the VERY symbolic book of Revelations as a literal accounting of events is short sighted at best.  And using it to say our loving heavenly Father would burn people for eternity for temporal sin is just nonsense.  Taking that stance you should hope you are right...because I can't imagine taking that stance and being wrong. 

Instead why not look at the UR points supported by Scripture found throughout Gary's articles and this forum.  How about addressing the points about ages, Gehenna, etc.


Offline jabcat

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If you've believed in and called on Jesus as your Savior, as He has graciously given me faith to do, then I consider you my brother in Christ.  If you want to discuss in the manner you say (lovingly), then we should be able to do that.  Jesus, Son of God, Savior, is the heart of the gospel. If the Holy Spirit sparks an interest in a truth in scripture, causes us to wonder about it and desire to know more, then our heart is in a place where we can receive.  (On the other hand, Saul...:)

I would like for you to see that God has a Plan to work all things according to His will, and it's not His will that any should be lost.  I would like for you to see that His Plan is of the ages, and it will culminate in His righteousness and the knowledge of the Lord covering the whole earth as the waters cover the sea.  I would like for you to see that He will become All in All, not all in some.  I would like for you to see that in the oldest manuscripts Jesus only spoke of temporary discipline, not in a pagan concept later added by translators.  But if your heart hasn't been prompted to see it or really seek to understand it, and if your goal is to just fight against it, then I'm personally OK with us just disagreeing over it and moving on.  If you or I are at a place where either one of us adamantly insists we have "all the right views and answers, have interpreted every scripture perfectly and therefor everyone else's '-ism' is completely without merit", then there's probably not much either of us can say to help the other "see".  "Contend for sound doctrine", yes.  But we all see through a glass darkly, and God will reveal all in due time.  James.
Neither should there be vulgar speech, foolish talk, or coarse jesting--all of which are out of character--but rather thanksgiving.  Eph. 5:4  **  Saved 1John 3.2, Eph. 2:8, John 1:12 - Being saved 2Cor. 4:16 2Peter 3:18 - Will be saved 1Peter 1:5 Romans 8:23

Offline reFORMer

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ALL saved people will have joy in Heaven but some will have greater levels of authority and power and ability than others, depending on what we did with our lives after salvation, here on Earth.

 4 I believe someone can be saved by trusting in the finished work and person of Jesus Christ and still go to Heaven even if they deny Hell, if they have trusted in HIM alone. However, some clarifications are vital: This is only if they have been deceived about it. Ie, if you have never believed in the existence of Hell why did you trust in Jesus? What are you saved FROM? Jesus is God and God IS love. Amen. But God is holy and His love includes His judgement.

. . . . . . .

Gary and others seem to think that because Jesus died for all, all humans will ultimately accept Jesus and be in heaven. If I am wrong, please correct me on your stance.

Just one topic for me to bring some clarity to at this time:  "Heavens" occurs just a few pecentage points more often than the singular "heaven."  Scripture speaks of, "War in heaven." (Rv 127)  Jesus says, "Heaven and Earth shall pass away, but my word shall never pass away."  These examples, and others following, show the popular way people think of the word heaven(s) obviously differs from the Bible's way of using these words.  It is part of what I call, "Cartoon Christianity."  We may start there, but we don't have to stay there.

The phrase,"Go to heaven" is never used in the Bible.  The closest is in 2 Co 11, where Paradise may or may not be connected to the third heaven.  Heaven is spoken of in Scripture as being our place of origin (Rev 2110) and our present place of abode, we "sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus" (Ep 26;) but, never is heaven spoken of as our destination.

Salvation, Greek: sozo, is very distorted when used to refer to a better place in death.  I hear this in so many I wonder how much the resurrection is on their mind and if they even believe in it at all.  Where ever one is in death we shall all be raise out of it, "Each in their own order." (1 Co 15)  Salvation is, to "Keep from injury or evil, such as disease, drowning, but specially from sins and their effect." (Keyword Concordance, A. E. Knoch)  What we are saved from is the death in Adam.  We are transferred into the life of Christ, being, "...made partakers of the Divine nature."  "For even as, in Adam, all are dying, thus also, in Christ, shall all be made alive." (1 Co 1522)  Salvation is God's process to accomplish His self described purpose, "Let us make man in our in image and likeness, and let them have dominion..." (Gn 126

The result of salvation is described by Paul as, "...a perfect man...the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ." (Ep 413)  I think it should become clear that if this is the purpose for every man woman and child who has the gift of the Holy Spirit within and upon them, then to meet as members of His body, with Christ the head present and leading forth out of each and every member is central to how this image and likeness if brought forth, both corporately and individually.  To have other mediators who "do church" for us is one of the foremost evidences of the present apostasy and the means by which the people of God are robbed of their gifts and blessings, their callings and their inheritance as children of God. 
I went to church; but, the Church wasn't on the program!  JESUS WANTS HIS BODY BACK!!  MEET WITHOUT HUMAN HEADSHIP!!!

Offline shawn

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If you've believed in and called on Jesus as your Savior, as He has graciously given me faith to do, then I consider you my brother in Christ.  If you want to discuss in the manner you say (lovingly), then we should be able to do that.  Jesus, Son of God, Savior, is the heart of the gospel. If the Holy Spirit sparks an interest in a truth in scripture, causes us to wonder about it and desire to know more, then our heart is in a place where we can receive.  (On the other hand, Saul...:)

I would like for you to see that God has a Plan to work all things according to His will, and it's not His will that any should be lost.  I would like for you to see that His Plan is of the ages, and it will culminate in His righteousness and the knowledge of the Lord covering the whole earth as the waters cover the sea.  I would like for you to see that He will become All in All, not all in some.  I would like for you to see that in the oldest manuscripts Jesus only spoke of temporary discipline, not in a pagan concept later added by translators.  But if your heart hasn't been prompted to see it or really seek to understand it, and if your goal is to just fight against it, then I'm personally OK with us just disagreeing over it and moving on.  If you or I are at a place where either one of us adamantly insists we have "all the right views and answers, have interpreted every scripture perfectly and therefor everyone else's '-ism' is completely without merit", then there's probably not much either of us can say to help the other "see".  "Contend for sound doctrine", yes.  But we all see through a glass darkly, and God will reveal all in due time.  James.

Well said.

Offline jabcat

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Thanks Shawn, you too.  Some good questions and suggestions have already been raised for consideration.  Blessings.
Neither should there be vulgar speech, foolish talk, or coarse jesting--all of which are out of character--but rather thanksgiving.  Eph. 5:4  **  Saved 1John 3.2, Eph. 2:8, John 1:12 - Being saved 2Cor. 4:16 2Peter 3:18 - Will be saved 1Peter 1:5 Romans 8:23

Offline WhiteWings

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Hello. I am the King James Bible Believer who has been discussing with Gary the falsehoods of any form of universalism, including "Christian" universalism.
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1 Jesus Christ is God and we are saved and eternally secure by faith alone in the Lord Jesus Christ alone, period.
What do you think the word "Christian" in "Christian Universalism" is refering to?
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I am totally and completely against ALL forms of "lordship salvation" which seek to add human works of obedience to eternal life which is by faith alone in Him alone.
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Once we are saved we are to live the rest of our lives for Jesus, in order not to keep salvation or prove salvation but to honor God out of love
What if you don't do such 'works'? Does it mean you were not saved in the first place?
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and to build up rewards.
Building for gains is works. The only works of love are for the benefits of others. Not for personal gain. So you do promote works.
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ALL saved people will have joy in Heaven but some will have greater levels of authority and power and ability than others, depending on what we did with our lives after salvation, here on Earth.
Blessed are the meek.
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2 All mankind/humankind are NOT children of God automatically. ALL humans are creations of God. ONLY those who have been saved by the LORD JESUS CHRIST are "sons of God"/children of God. This includes Old Testament saints as well as Church Age saints
Did Abraham worship Jesus for the Blood He would shed on the cross many centuries later?
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(I am a Biblical Dispensationalist). When people say to me "God would not send His children to Hell", I agree totally. God would never do this because His children are part of Him (family wise) and God sends to Hell those who have used their free will choice to reject Jesus as their only eternal Savior.
Proverbs 16:9 A man's heart plans his way: but the LORD directs his steps.
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Calvinism is wrong: Jesus DID die for ALL humans, but all humans will NOT be saved. Only those who believe.
Only ===> Especially
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3 I have been reading some of the detailed posts on this forum. I see alot of emotionalism attempting to masquerade as Biblical evidence.
I really doubt you even come close refuting those posts. That said show us your proof for the claims you made in your first post.
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If everyone makes Heaven there was no reason for Jesus to come and die for us and go through the horror He did. He bore Hell for the believer, literally, because that was the ONLY WAY to save us. We MUST BELIEVE IN HIM and Him ALONE to be saved.
You really have no clue what Jesus mission was on earth, do you?
The wages of sin is death. Jesus died to pay those wages. Remember His nearly last words "paid in full".
Without the death of Jesus not a single person can enter heaven. Unless they are without sin of course. And we both know nobody, except Jesus, reaches that standard..... So think of the most perfect/pure/saintly person you can imagine (besides Jesus). Then image all humans taht ever lived are as good as that person. How many would make it into heaven?
Answer: Exactly zero. None.
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I believe someone can be saved by trusting in the finished work and person of Jesus Christ and still go to Heaven even if they deny Hell, if they have trusted in HIM alone.
Now we are getting somewhere! Believing in Christ is what counts. Not hell, or any other thing.
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However, some clarifications are vital: This is only if they have been deceived about it. Ie, if you have never believed in the existence of Hell why did you trust in Jesus?
Because Jesus is on every page of the Bible. Hell isn't on a single page. Hell is a satanic doctrine promoted by those who want to defame the kind nature (God=Love) of both Father and Son. Those hell promoting dark minds did more harm to Christianity than science/atheism you mentioned earlier. Assuming Christian Universalist really don't believe in hell; does that mean they are decieved in your opinion?
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What are you saved FROM?
According to your doctrine Father sent His Son to save us from Himself...
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Jesus is God and God IS love. Amen. But God is holy and His love includes His judgement.
Nobody on this forum, I'm aware of, denies there will be judgement. The diffrence between us (you, other forum members) is that you believe in satanic justice and we in Fatherly correction/discpline. Yep, correction, the word Jesus always used.
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Gary and others seem to think that because Jesus died for all, all humans will ultimately accept Jesus and be in heaven. If I am wrong, please correct me on your stance.
That part of UR you understood correctly.
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Problem: Once the person bodilly dies and they see the truth face to face it is too late.
Belief and kneel is the requirement. I see no time restriction.
http://tentmaker.org/forum/bible-verses-used-to-assert-not-all-will-be-saved/hebrews-927-after-death-comes-judgement/
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The people in the Book of Revelation, for example, who take the Mark of the Beast have the opportunity to repent but Scripture clearly states they refuse and what do they do? They curse God all the more. These are NOT atheists, mind you, they recognize it is God sending plagues down on them and they hate Him all the more. Once someone dies lost, they are instantly hardened against God like the devils.
Which verse that states it's to late for them (at that point)?

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Why do you think Satan and the fallen angels can never and will never repent of their hatred and unbelief? Not only did Jesus not die for angels, but, they are forever set and confirmed, hardened in their hate against Him. They SAW directly and have committed the Blasphemy of the Holy Spirit. The Unforgivable SIN! It is like Charles Stanley said, a state in which you die having never believed in the Lord Jesus Christ.
The unforgiveble sin is a unBiblical doctrine.
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There are two families in the universe: The family of God, in Jesus Christ, and the family of Satan. There is no neutrality and no middle ground.
Don't worry Alumina. Once your veils or darkness are ripped away you are also adopted into God's family.
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You are either a member of one or the other, spiritually.
A bit like the sheep hearing the voice of the Shepherd. And not to forget the sheep of the other flock that will also respond to the Good Sheperd that even saves that single sheep.
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Everyone who rejects the Lord Jesus Christ is a child of Satan, no matter how outwardly nice they appear to be, and, once they die in that lost state, they are forever joined to him to burn forever with Him.
Same for the "Christians" who make lengthy posts to slander God's loving character, His will and His ability to make that will come true.
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Instead of distorting Scripture out of context to make yourselves feel better, warn people that unless they turn to Jesus Christ alone as God and Savior, they will forever burn.

I do not harbor angst to you in this forum, I am here to have loving but truthful Biblical discussion and I welcome all and any comments.
Same for me Alumina! Just as you meant good calling us liars, emotionalists, Word-twisters and decieved I meant well calling you peddler of demonic doctrine.

 :welcome:  :newb:
« Last Edit: July 16, 2012, 02:10:30 PM by WhiteWings »
1 Timothy 2:3-4  ...God our Savior;  Who will have all men to be saved...
John 12:47  And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world.
Romans 4:5 But to the one who does not work, but believes in the one who declares the ungodly righteous ...

Offline lomarah

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Hi Alumina and welcome! I used to believe basically the same things you did. I come from a Baptist/Wesleyan background. You had mentioned that you see a lot of "emotionalism" in UR beliefs. Well that may be true and I honestly don't think that's a bad thing. If something seems wrong to your conscience it very well could be. One of the main things that brought me to the truth of God's plan for the ages was the birth of my daughter. I just knew that Love could never (and would never) let her be tormented in "Hell" forever and ever, no matter what she did or didn't do, or no matter what she believed. I had quite a dark period in my life around this time because even though my heart knew it, my head was still fixed on hell passages and teachings of the church. I cried out to God for the truth and He answered. He led me to a "UR" website and led me to 3 books that either hinted at or openly taught UR. I was NOT looking for books that taught UR and the titles of these books gave no indication that they even suggested it. I got all three books in one trip to the library. (I also later learned that I had put one book back that I was contemplating on borrowing that taught ET. If that's not an indicator I don't know what is.) I also was not looking for the website, it appeared in a link on the side of my email one day and caught my eye. I know you will likely chalk all this up to coincidences but I can assure you, these were no coincidences!

In regards to what are we saved from: like many others have stated, we are saved from SIN and DEATH. This is what the Bible teaches. Find a verse that says we are saved from Hell if you can. (In the OT often David would say in the Psalms, You have saved me from the "pit" or from "Sheol" which is the grave. He was not talking about some fiery torture pit for sure.) The Lord purifies us with His holy fire and burns all of the impurities out of us. This will happen to every soul, INCLUDING those in the "church" who call Jesus "Lord, Lord" and yet continue to work iniquity.

Also, how was Jesus' death and resurrection in vain if He saves EVERYONE, not just a select few?? He is the Saviour of all. Isn't that a true victory? YES and AMEN! Likely what is hindering you from seeing this is the false belief that "Christians" (those who say, "Jesus is Lord") are "in" and get transferred to some pearly gated, golden streeted mansion in the clouds upon death. Not so. The purified are the only ones allowed to enter. No sin will enter the kingdom and we will all be purified beforehand, either in this life or the next. We are saved from SIN and from DEATH, THROUGH the purifying fire of God! We all must go through this and be purified! Sin hurts us and it hurts those around us and God will not allow that sin to continue to hurt us. He loves us too much.

I pray that your eyes and heart will be opened to the truth Alumina. God really IS Love.

Blessings.
From Him and through Him and to Him are all things.

Offline Molly

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Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
--John 14:6




John 10:9 I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. He will come in and go out, and find pasture.


For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.  Eph 2:18

Offline Molly

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It doesn't get any more emotional than this.


Then Jonah prayed to the Lord his God from the fish's belly. 2 And he said:

"I cried out to the Lord because of my affliction,
And He answered me.

"Out of the belly of Sheol I cried,
And You heard my voice.
3 For You cast me into the deep,
Into the heart of the seas,
And the floods surrounded me;
All Your billows and Your waves passed over me.
4 Then I said, 'I have been cast out of Your sight;
Yet I will look again toward Your holy temple.'
5 The waters surrounded me, even to my soul;
The deep closed around me;
Weeds were wrapped around my head.
6 I went down to the moorings of the mountains;
The earth with its bars closed behind me forever;
Yet You have brought up my life from the pit,
O Lord, my God.

7 "When my soul fainted within me,
I remembered the Lord;
And my prayer went up to You,
Into Your holy temple.

8 "Those who regard worthless idols
Forsake their own Mercy.
9 But I will sacrifice to You
With the voice of thanksgiving;
I will pay what I have vowed.
Salvation is of the Lord."

10 So the Lord spoke to the fish, and it vomited Jonah onto dry land.

--Jonah 2

Offline Molly

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Salvation H3444 is of the LORD.H3068

--Jonah 2


Y'shû‛âh is LORD.

-- Jonah 2

Offline lomarah

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Yes Molly, amen!

Also - every knee will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father.

No man can say Jesus is Lord apart from the Holy Spirit.

 :HeartThrob:
From Him and through Him and to Him are all things.

Offline Molly

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Why does he put that name above every name?

Because it is the function, the salvation of all men,  that is closest to his heart.


Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else.

--Isa 45:22


Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn.  Isa 60:3

« Last Edit: July 16, 2012, 04:13:55 PM by Molly »

Offline Molly

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but, never is heaven spoken of as our destination.

I disagree.

For we know that if our earthly house, this tent, is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal [aionios] in the heavens.
--2 Cor 5

Offline Sherman

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Hello. I am the King James Bible Believer who has been discussing with Gary the falsehoods of any form of universalism, including "Christian" universalism. I am here on the forum to have a polite but firm Biblical-based discussion on this topic. My stance is simple and direct and based on the Words of God:

Frankly, "IF" one assumes the KJV is "THE" correct translation, as it seems your intro would indicate, then we don't have much to talk about for the KJV errantly translates Sheol, Hades, and Gehenna as "Hell" 63 times.  Thankfully, modern translations are increasingly correcting these mistakes in the KJV.  Even the NKJV corrects 32 of these mistakes and only continues to mistakenly translate Sheol, Hades, and Gehenna as Hell 31 times. 

"IF" one tries to understand scripture through the lense of the KJV, then one will certainly be predisposed to believe in Hell because in the KJV Hell is all over the place, though of course the Hebrew and Greek text doesn't support such.  Sheol means grave/realm of the dead.  Hades (Greek word used to translate Sheol in the LXX0 simply means "realm of the dead".  In Greek mythology, all went to Hades upon death; and within Hades people were consigned to different realms.

And Gehenna, which Matthew (almost exclusively) quotes Jesus warning of, is actually a transliteration of the Hebrew Ga Hinnom, which was a reference to the valley of Hinnom just outside and SE of Jerusalem.  The best translation would be "Hinnom Valley".  It was/is a "real" place and thus needs to be interpreted metaphorically, not literally.  What did Jesus mean by warning of being cast into Hinnom Valley where there was an "eternal" fire and had "worms that die not"?  First note that "worms that die not" is a reference to Maggots which are worms that do not die, but seem to appear from nowhere when dead flesh is exposed and disappear (die not) when the dead flesh is consumed. 

1) Many theologians believe Hinnom Valley was one of Jerusalem's trash dumps. This fits the concept of being a place of "eternal" fire and maggots.  If this aspect of Hinnom Valley is what Jesus was alluding to, then Jesus is metaphorically warning of a person's life being "trashed", "going to the dogs" as we might say today.  And if so, it says nothing of punishment in the afterlife. 

2) Hinnom Valley was the place where the Israelites sacrificed their children to the idol Molech via fire, which was the straw (hay bale) that broke the back of God's grace and resulted in the destruction of Jerusalem and Babylonian captivity.  IF this aspect of Hinnom Valley is what Jesus was alluding to, then Jesus is warning of the real-life bondage and destruction of sin in a person's life.  If you give your life over to sin, you'll be so consumed by evil that you'll even sacrifice your own children to your idols!  And in the context of Jesus speaking specifically to the Jews He could have also been warning of the coming destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans.  Neither of these though imply endless torment, of course.

3) And the Pharisees used Hinnom Valley as a metaphor of non-specific punishment in the afterlife, with many, if not all being purified through such punishment of sin in the afterlife (less than a year long), and for some the possibility of annihilation or indefinitely long torment for the especially wicked like Herod.   IF Jesus is referencing this metaphorical use of Hinnom Valley then He is warning of non-specific, and primarily remedial type punishment in the afterlife for sin.  The Mark 9 passage would seem to lean this direction, especially when one considers that after warning of the fire of Hinnom Valley in the previous verses, Jesus then says that "everyone will be salted by fire"!

So which did Jesus mean by His warnings concerning Hinnom Valley?  Well, He does not specify, but leaves it open to speak to people, graphically and emotionally warning of the death and destruction that comes as a result of sin!  If we sin, whether we are believers or not, children of God or not, sin brings death and destruction, a trashed life, the fear of anger and punishment from God in this life and the life to come, death and destruction to all that we know, and increasing bondage to evil!  Jesus meant His warnings to illicit an emotional response from His audience, the children of God, and to emotionally motivate them to live righteously and not give in to our baser selfish desires!

Well, anyhow, "IF" one limits his/her study of scripture to the KJV, then one will naturally be limited by the mistakes in the KJV.

Offline Molly

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Don't put all the blame on King James Version.  [and btw, what IS the judgment of Gehenna?  It doesn't sound so pleasant.]



New International Version (©1984)
"You snakes! You brood of vipers! How will you escape being condemned to hell?

New Living Translation (©2007)
Snakes! Sons of vipers! How will you escape the judgment of hell?

English Standard Version (©2001)
You serpents, you brood of vipers, how are you to escape being sentenced to hell?

New American Standard Bible (©1995)
"You serpents, you brood of vipers, how will you escape the sentence of hell?

King James Bible (Cambridge Ed.)
Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?

International Standard Version (©2008)
You snakes, you children of serpents! How can you escape being condemned to hell?

Aramaic Bible in Plain English (©2010)
Snakes! Offspring of vipers! How will you escape from the judgment of Gehenna?

GOD'S WORD® Translation (©1995)
"You snakes! You poisonous snakes! How can you escape being condemned to hell?

King James 2000 Bible (©2003)
You serpents, you generation of vipers, how can you escape the judgment of hell?

American King James Version
You serpents, you generation of vipers, how can you escape the damnation of hell?

American Standard Version
Ye serpents, ye offspring of vipers, how shall ye escape the judgment of hell?

Douay-Rheims Bible
You serpents, generation of vipers, how will you flee from the judgment of hell?

Darby Bible Translation
Serpents, offspring of vipers, how should ye escape the judgment of hell?

English Revised Version
Ye serpents, ye offspring of vipers, how shall ye escape the judgment of hell?

Webster's Bible Translation
Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?

Weymouth New Testament
O serpents, O vipers' brood, how are you to escape condemnation to Gehenna?

World English Bible
You serpents, you offspring of vipers, how will you escape the judgment of Gehenna?

Young's Literal Translation
'Serpents! brood of vipers! how may ye escape from the judgment of the gehenna?

Offline lomarah

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The judgment of Gehenna is likely getting all the garbage (sin) burned in us. That's how I take it... but it's just an inference.
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Offline WhiteWings

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Bible semantics
The English word Hell comes from the Anglo-Saxon word Hel, meaning, simply, a hidden place or a place covered over, although the Bible contains four different words, which, for some reason, have all been rendered using this word. In the Old Testament we find it used in place of the original Hebrew word lwav Sheol, and in the New Testament the same word is used in place of the Greek word geenna Gehenna - an anglicised transliteration of the Hebrew Mnh-ayq Gehinnom. We also find the word Hell used in place of the Greek words adhv Hades and tartarow Tartarus.

The word Sheol more often means "the grave," although in some instances it is also rendered as "the underworld." Its predominant use in the Old Testament is to describe the "place of the dead," nothing more. Hades, often disputed to be the Greek equivalent of Sheol, means unseen, concealed, or invisible, and is also the name of the underworld in Greek mythology. The word Tartarus, likewise, can be found in the classical Greek literature of the Homeric and Hesiodic periods were it was used to describe a place of darkness reserved for the chastening of the Titans. The word cannot be found anywhere in the Hebrew of the Old Testament, though, and appears only once in the New Testament. Tartarus, like Hades, could, therefore, be considered to be of pagan origin and one cannot accept belief in either of these places without also accepting the Greek mythology associated with them. Gehenna is the only word in the Bible which can predominantly be associated with fire, although, the word refers to a place located outside Jerusalem, in the Valley of Hinnom, where fires were kept up for the burning of the city's rubbish. The fires of Gehenna were, then, physical, and actually existed in this world, not the next. That these words are not rendered consistently, though, throughout the Old and New Testaments, is perplexing to say the least, and one can only assume that the translators may well have intended to impose upon their readers a sense different from that of the original Greek and Hebrew. What is often not clear, however, is whether or not such words refer to the physically dead, or the spiritually dead.

Hellenization

Judea had been occupied by many different nations over the years, the effect of which was twofold; not only were the Jewish people often scattered among other nations, they were also subject to the cultural influences of those nations. Cross-fertilisation and integration of religious ideas often took place during such periods, though, and it is well known that some Jews even tried to synthesise Pagan spirituality with their own religious traditions. Later generations of exiled Jews, however, such as the third century BCE 'Diaspora, became so integrated into Greek speaking Alexandria, that they could no longer understand Hebrew, and had to have the Torah translated into Greek. This translation, known as the Septuagint, is the version quoted in almost all New Testament works today, although it is no longer used by Jews.

It is maintained that the Septuagint is 'a reasonably free rendering of the original Hebrew texts which takes into account what Greek speaking readers would understand, and what they would expect to hear.' Unfortunately, though, the actions of the "expert scribes" may well have been very lapse, or even very mischievous, given that they rendered in line with Greek mythology and philosophy, and thus the presence of the word Hades. That this was erroneous can be shown, especially in the story of Joseph in the book of Genesis, where it is obvious that the writer meant "grave," not the "House of Hades." For example, when Joseph's brothers return to Canaan, Jacob says to them:

'…My son shall not go down with you; for his brother is dead, and he is left alone: if mischief befall him by the way in which ye go, then shall ye bring down my grey hairs with sorrow to the grave…' (Genesis 42:38)

The term "…then shall ye bring down my grey hairs with sorrow to the grave…" is a euphemism, meaning that, by taking away his son, Benjamin, they would be the cause of his death in his old age. Although the margins of later Christian revisions often contain a reference to the original Sheol, we are still left with the dilemma of believing that they both mean the same thing, when in fact, they do not.

The problem which now remains, however, is whether the semantic signal generated by the word "Hell," triggers the Sheol concept of "the grave" or rather, the Hades concept of the place of the Hundred-handed and the three headed watchdog named Cerberus? Given that both words developed within two entirely different cultures, it remains somewhat of a quandary as to why the scribes never transliterated Sheol into Greek in the first place, as they did with Gehenna elsewhere. Although it is doubtful whether Hades should ever have been written into the Canon of Jewish, and Christian, religious texts, the sad fact remains that the conceptual link which has developed between Sheol and Hades has become so much of a tradition that it is difficult to break.

Eternal damnation

A closer look at the likes of "eternal damnation" and "everlasting punishment," etc., also reveal problems for those of a "hell fire" persuasion. For example, in the gospel of Matthew, it states:

'...Then he shall answer them, saying, "Verily I say unto you, inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me. And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal." (Matthew 25:45,46).

Now in this passage, the words spoken by Jesus are "aionion kolasin," which are, incorrectly, rendered as "everlasting punishment." There are, in fact, a number of Greek words, which, despite having slightly different meanings, have all been rendered as either eternal, everlasting, or for ever. In the Old Testament the most common word used is Mle olam, which means the hidden time, and is derived from the Chaldee alam, to hide. In the New Testament, we find the word aiwniov aionios, or aionian, meaning of, or belonging to, an age. Aionios is the adjective of the Greek noun aion, which means age, but which is also rendered as course or world. Aionion does not mean everlasting or eternal. Had Jesus meant everlasting or eternal he could have used a word like aidion, which does mean eternal; as in aidion timorion, which means "eternal torment," or, eirgmon aidion, which means "eternal imprisonment."

The Greek word kolasiv kolasin, likewise, may be defined more as a form of chastisement, as in pruning or checking for the purposes of discipline or correction. Thus, he who seeks to punish does so, not for past wrongs, but for the sake of the future. Thus, the act of pruning or correcting the person is so that they benefit from it, and there is no retribution involved. The word "damnation," comes from the Greek word krisiv krisis, which, more accurately, means a judgement, or a separating, although, the word has also been rendered as condemnation and accusation. Subsequently, the words translated into the term "eternal damnation" may equally, be translated as just "a period of judgement," or even "a period of correction."
The valley of Hinnom

It is often suggested that Jesus himself spent a large part of his ministery warning people about Hell, the eveidence for which, comes from the New Testament synoptics, where the word appears about 15 times. In the Greek of these gospels, however, the actual words used by Jesus were Hades and Gehenna, which, as we have seen, offer slim evidence indeed for a place of eternal damnation. Now even if Jesus was fluent in Greek, and well versed in their mythology, the fact remains, that he was a Jew, who came to fulfil Jewish Messianic prophecy, not Greek mythology. To this end, it can usually be shown that, far from warning people about punishment in the afterlife, Jesus is, more often, talking about punishment in this life. For example, in the gospel of Matthew Jesus is quoted as saying:

'...Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, 'Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgement.' But I say unto you, that whosoever is angry with his brother, without a cause, shall be in danger of the judgement: and whosoever shall say to his brother, 'Raca' shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, 'Thou fool,' shall be in danger of hell fire.' (Matthew 5:21,22).

An exegesis of this verse will, however, disclose that it conceals far more than it reveals to the unsuspecting eye. For, in using the word "judgement," Jesus is referring to the lower ecclesiastical court of 3 judges who presided in the Synagogue, and in using the word "council," he is referring to the Supreme, or Great Council of the seventy, also known as the Sanhedrin. Moreover, in using "Gehenna," Jesus is referring to the well-known geographical location, south of the city, the place where the bodies of the "wicked" were, allegedly, disposed of by burning. Gehenna, incidentally, became the object of utmost loathing to many Jews, and, more importantly, was often employed as a symbol of any great woe or judgement. In rendering the verse as it is above, the translators disguise the fact that Gehenna was in this world, as were both the Judges and the Sanhedrin. The verse may, therefore, be translated just as accurately as:

'...Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, 'Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the [judges].' But I say unto you, that whosoever is angry with his brother, without a cause, shall be in danger of the [judges]: and whosoever shall say to his brother, 'Raca' shall be in danger of the [Sanhedrin]: but whosoever shall say [to his brother], 'Thou fool,' shall be in danger of [an even greater woe].'

When the verse is translated thus, and taken in context with verses 16 to 26, it becomes clear that Jesus is talking figuratively and not literally, or even metaphorically, as many have supposed. The verse is about anger and the law of murder, and how exacting and demanding the kingdom of God is in this life, not the next. And the moral of the story is, of course, that the greater the anger, the greater the potential consequences of that anger.
The offending eye

Jesus uses the word Gehenna again further on down in the same chapter, the full account of which reads:

"…Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart. And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell. And if thy right hand offend thee, cut it off, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell…" (Matthew 5:27-30).

Jesus is talking about transgressing the law of adultery here, which was regarded as a great social wrong, as well as a great sin. However, no one should suppose that he is speaking literally about the removal of body parts. Hypocatastasis is the nature of the vocabulary here, and the right-eye should be seen, only as an implied representation of something which is a stumbling block, as should the hand, which was often the symbol of human action.

The word offend in this verse is rendered from the Greek word skandalizw skandalizo, which means; to cause one to stumble, or even to entice one to sin. However, in reality it is seldom the eye, or the hand, which leads a person into mischief, for these are only outward actions which result from that which is within - the mind, or the heart, etc. Given this, the same verses may be translated, just as accurately, as:

"…And if [a married woman is the object of your desire, then remove this stumbling block] from thee: for it is profitable for thee that [this part of thee] should perish, and not that thy whole body [be subject to even greater woe because of it]…"

It is clear, then, that the stumbling block, in this instance, is adultery, and rather than Jesus warning people about a literal Hell, he is in fact, giving sound advice on the consequences of it, in this life. It is likely that such 'stumbling blocks,' were so much a part of the nation at the time, that removing them, or giving them up, was so difficult, that it was like giving up a body part, and hence the symbolism of the allegory. The reader should be reminded, however, that as with most allegories of this nature, there is often another meaning concealed within, as we shall see later.

The undying worm

To the light bed-time reader, the Gospel of Mark, apparently, provides us with a little more information about Gehenna which is not mentioned elsewhere, although beneath the surface, rather than support the view of a literal Hell, it actually undermines it:

'...And if thy hand offend thee, cut it off. It is better for thee to enter into life maimed, than having two hands to go into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched. Where their worm dieth not and the fire is not quenched. And if thy foot offend thee, cut it off. It is better for thee to enter halt into life, than having two feet to be cast onto hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched. Where their worm dieth not and the fire is not quenched. And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out. It is better for thee to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye, than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire. Where their worm dieth not and the fire is not quenched. For everyone shall be salted with fire, and every sacrifice shall be salted with salt. Salt is good. But if the salt have lost its saltiness, wherewith shall ye season it. Have salt in yourselves and have peace one with another...' (Mark 9:43-50)
Aside of the contingent hypothesis, the term "enter into life," in these verses, surprisingly, has nothing to do with entering into the after-life, or heaven. The word "enter" is rendered from the Greek word eisercomai eiserchomai, which means to come in, or go out, but can also be used metaphorically to denote entrance into a condition, or state. These words, therefore, refer to vitality, and entering into fullness of life whilst in this world, rather than the next. To be maimed, of course, is to be wounded, injured, or hurt, be that physically, or psychologically, and the result of removing a stumbling block from some individuals would have exactly that effect - giving up sin hurts, in other words.

The term "…Where their worm dieth not and the fire is not quenched…" is repeated three times in this verse, thus, among other things, drawing the attention of the reader to its importance. The "worm" in this verse is rendered from the Greek word skwlhx skolex, the name given to a specific type of worm, which feeds on decaying matter - a detritivore in fact. The equivalent Hebrew word is hmr rimmah, a worm, or maggot, also associated with decay. Now the writer of Mark's Gospel would have us believe that Jesus is quoting from the Old Testament book of Isaiah, but the problem with this, is that the worm referred to in Isaiah is not associated with decay at all - quite the opposite, in fact:

For as the new heavens and the new earth, which I will make, shall remain before me, saith the LORD, so shall your seed and your name remain. And it shall come to pass, that from one new moon to another, and from one Sabbath to another, shall all flesh come to worship before me, saith the LORD. And they shall go forth, and look upon the carcasses of the men that have transgressed against me: for their worm shall not die, neither shall their fire be quenched; and they shall be an abhorring unto all flesh (Isaiah 66:22-24).

The Hebrew word used here is elwt towla, meaning specifically coccus ilicis, the female worm, or grub, from which, the much sort after, scarlet dye was extracted. In the Old Testament the word is nearly always translated as "scarlet," the colour predominantly associated with wealth and importance, etc., and, not surprisingly, a colour which was a prominent feature of the Tabernacle. Perhaps the most important occurrence of this word, though, is in the book of Job, where it is used in reference to, none other than, "the son of man" himself:

How much less man, that is a worm? [rimmah] and the son of man, which is a worm? [towla]. (Job 25:6)

Job makes it clear that there is a distinction to be made between these two worms, as one is associated with death and decay [rimmah], the other with royalty, the "son of man" [towla]. The life-cycle of the towla was, then, evidently, symbolic of the shedding of Jesus' blood on the cross - or on a tree, as Acts would have it - and, subsequently, the resurrection and the eternal life which was to follow. That this is the sense in which towla is used in Isaiah 66 is evident from other words used in verse 24; the word "abhorring," for example, comes from the Hebrew word Nward dera'own, which can also be translated as aversion or contempt, and to hold someone in contempt is, of course, to despise them. That Jesus was "a reproach of men, and despised of the people" is attested to in Psalm 22:6, where again, we find the word towla translated as worm. The word "unto" is rendered from the Hebrew word la 'el which can also mean by, and the word "flesh" is rendered from the Hebrew word rsb basar which can also mean mankind.

It should also be remembered that the latter portion of the book of Isaiah was, for the most part, written to reassure those in Jerusalem, that God was going to fulfil his promises to the faithful. The fate of the rebellious, however, is also described, especially in chapter 65:1-16, for example, and it is this fate which is aptly summed up in chapter 66:24, in the term "…the carcasses of the men that have transgressed against me." This is evident from the fact that the word transgressed is rendered from the Hebrew word evp pasha, which also means to rebel.

What is more important, though, is that the "worm" and the "fire" mentioned here, does not refer to those who have "transgressed" or rebelled against the Lord. The worm here is towla, which was not a symbol of death or decay, but rather, a symbol of wealth, status, and eternal life through the son of man. So it is the faithful who shall "go forth" and it is "their seed" and "their name," that will remain, just as the "new heavens and the new earth," but it is they, also, who will be "despised by all mankind," just as Jesus was. It is their fire which shall not be quenched, not the fire of the carcasses of the rebellious.

It would appear then, that the writer of Mark, either did not know the real significance and symbolism of the undying worm when he constructed his gospel, or he simply could not find a Greek equivalent for it. In the latter case, it remains a mystery why he did not, then, transliterate the Hebrew towla, instead of using the Greek word skolex. That the writer of the Gospel of Mark completely misses the importance of the Old Testament symbology has proved to be totally misleading, for it presents the unwary reader with what appears to be just another allusion to Hell, when in fact, it is not.
1 Timothy 2:3-4  ...God our Savior;  Who will have all men to be saved...
John 12:47  And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world.
Romans 4:5 But to the one who does not work, but believes in the one who declares the ungodly righteous ...

Offline KingKenny

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Just thought I'd throw my two pence (or cents since many of you are from the US).

The emotional aspect of Universalism is kind of our "moral witness" (Hope Beyond Hell). When the doctrine of eternal torment is challenged and discussed logically; "let us reason" (Isaiah 1:18), it falls apart and goes against everything Jesus Christ and ultimately, God stands for. How can we "dwelleth in love, dwelleth in God" (1 John 4:16) and "overcome evil with good" (Romans 12:21) when eternal torment is the exact opposite of what we're asked to do. God says "vengeance is mine" (Romans 12:19), but remember that He will never have vengeance if it doesn't end. He will never be satisfied because the will of man is exalted above the will of God. We are our own gods if our will is higher than God's own will.

God broke my will one day and my word, it broke me bad. If He could do that to me (and I didn't ask for him. In fact, I believed in the Ancient Aliens stuff until one random morning), then He can do it for everyone, otherwise, He is lazy. God's creation proves he is not lazy.

One final thought; if God is powerless to save everyone, then Satan has claimed victory with the majority of souls because God overcomes evil with evil. God is supposed to be impartial, yet He is partial in the doctrine of ET. You cannot serve two masters (Matthew 6:24). ET requires us to be unequally yolked with love and torment, two masters of such contradiction that they do not deserve to occupy the same space.

The day God's will is in everyone, therefore He is All in All is the day we will all glorify his name together. What a beautiful thought.

Offline jabcat

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I'd ask that we please keep this thread on topic and not get into discussing "rabbit trails" that we have and can discuss in other threads.

That said, hoepfully this will be helpful to the direction of the thread.  First of all, I believe anyone who knows me knows that holding the scriptures (accurately translated, Spirit revealed) in high esteem is one thing I'll "go toe-to-toe" with someone on.  However, I personally believe mistranslations of gehenna, sheol, aion, kolasin aionios, etc., have been very significant in the huge numbers of Christendom that have accepted the eternal hell distortion.  Some, for some reason (God's will) have been given the blessing to have UR revealed to them, despite their primary use of translations that have those translational errors in them. 

Molly, you are one, who was apparently very blessed to not have been indoctrinated with fear, retribution, focus on God's anger, etc., and His supposed intent to torture most of His creation "forever"; and then having that burned into your consciousness, and then reinforced ("proved") by whatever translation you read.  I believe you're by far the exception.  Most believe those teachings are of God, "because the Bible (their version) says so".  I know absolutely wonderful people - people who are "better than me" so to speak - who cling to the idea of eternal torment, and cannot - absolutely CANNOT see past what their translation says about it.  "It's in the Bible!"  On the other hand, I believe some of those who do still primarily use versions that translate as "hell", "had" to be exposed to other ideas about it, i.e., be informed that there indeed are translational errors, and that those words in the manuscripts actually do say something else than what their translations says, to then help them be able to see past/through what they're reading and into the truth of the matter.   Not that "they can no longer or should no longer primarily use their favorite translation", but that they have had their eyes opened to be able to read what's there, but know that it actually means something different (accurate translation of such).  And then for a few maybe it makes absolutely no difference what they read;  they just know the truth.  However, I believe by far, most have been influenced by whatever their primary translation says;  and even though God can and does many times cut through it and bring truth, IMO, it's still a big part of where the vital difference between the sharing of truth or error becomes so important.  We are affected by both/either.  (That's a long 2 cents :)

So maybe we can agree that Molly's statement of "don't blame it ALL on the KJV" is a good standard, while also accepting that many have been very much affected by what their primary (or only) version of the Bible says?   I am one that was, and I believe that to be very true.

Blessings to all.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2012, 12:53:19 AM by jabcat »
Neither should there be vulgar speech, foolish talk, or coarse jesting--all of which are out of character--but rather thanksgiving.  Eph. 5:4  **  Saved 1John 3.2, Eph. 2:8, John 1:12 - Being saved 2Cor. 4:16 2Peter 3:18 - Will be saved 1Peter 1:5 Romans 8:23

Offline reFORMer

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So, where's alumina?
I went to church; but, the Church wasn't on the program!  JESUS WANTS HIS BODY BACK!!  MEET WITHOUT HUMAN HEADSHIP!!!

Offline WhiteWings

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So, where's alumina?
In the Refiners Fire  :yes:
1 Timothy 2:3-4  ...God our Savior;  Who will have all men to be saved...
John 12:47  And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world.
Romans 4:5 But to the one who does not work, but believes in the one who declares the ungodly righteous ...

Offline WhiteWings

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I'd ask that we please keep this thread on topic and not get into discussing "rabbit trails" that we have and can discuss in other threads.
The opening post isn't really focussed on a single aspect of UR. That's a blessing for rabbits
1 Timothy 2:3-4  ...God our Savior;  Who will have all men to be saved...
John 12:47  And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world.
Romans 4:5 But to the one who does not work, but believes in the one who declares the ungodly righteous ...

Offline lomarah

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Hahhhaha rabbit smilie ftw!!
From Him and through Him and to Him are all things.