Will Lost Souls Suffer Eternally?

Most of the believers of traditional Christianity have almost no understanding of what occurs upon death of believers and unbelievers.

What will happen to “the wicked” lost unbelieving souls? According to the Bible viewed in its proper context, such a person will cease exist in any form and they cannot be located in any place. Thus, they are not alive to suffer any sort of conscious torment thou religion still teaches such pagan ideas.

“For yet a little while, and the wicked SHALL NOT BE [they will cease to exist]: yea, thou shalt diligently consider his place, and it shall not be.” Psalms 37:10.

Note that the proper Bible hermeneutic or interpretive rules tell us we should always interpret the words of the Bible literally, unless the context clearly makes it otherwise. That’s how God intended His Word to be understood and interpreted. Otherwise, when the Bible is not taken literally, our understanding of the Word is left to the opinions and imaginations of fallible sin-laden mankind. Let’s here apply this hermeneutic rule as we read these verses below, noting the words; perish, ‘shall not be,’ destroy[ed], ‘be no more,’ death, die, consume, devour, ‘bring to ashes,’ etc.

• Will the wicked go on living and suffering for eternity or will they perish forever?

“But the wicked shall PERISH, and the enemies of the LORD shall be as the fat of lambs: they shall CONSUME; INTO SMOKE shall they CONSUME AWAY.” Psalms 37:20.

• Some ask; “So, the wicked will be destroyed and not burn forever?” Correct!

“But the transgressors shall be destroyed together: the end of the wicked shall be cut off [Heb. karat, by implication… be destroyed, consumed].” Psalms 37:38.

• But doesn’t “cut off” only mean they will be separated from God? This idea is a false religious tradition.

“As smoke is driven away, so drive them away: as wax melteth before the fire, so let the wicked perish at the presence of God.” Psalms 68:2.

• So, then this must mean that the wicked will be no more or be consumed!

“Let the sinners be consumed out of the earth, and let the wicked be no more. Bless thou the LORD, O my soul. Praise ye the LORD.” Psalms 104:35.

• So, there will be a final destruction of the wicked, they will not burn in hell for eternity?

“The LORD preserveth all them that love him: but all the wicked will he destroy.” Psalms 145:20.

  • What method will God use to destroy the wicked?

“Behold, they shall be as STUBBLE; THE FIRE SHALL BURN THEM; they shall not deliver themselves from THE POWER OF THE FLAME: THERE SHALL not be a coal to warm at, nor fire to sit before it.” Isaiah 47:14.

• But many say, “I thought the soul never dies?” To “die,” below, means the person of the soul “ceases to alive.” Jesus warned of this in in Matt 10:28.

“Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sinneth, it shall die [cease to be alive]. Ezekiel 18:4.

“And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to DESTROY BOTH SOUL AND BODY IN HELL. Matthew 10:28 (KJV)

• How does God feel about the final destruction of the wicked?

“Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but [rather] that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel?” Ezekiel 33:11.

• So, after the destruction of the wicked, sin and its manifestations will not rise up again?

“What do ye imagine against the LORD? he will make an utter end: affliction shall not rise up the second time. For while they be folden together as thorns, and while they are drunken as drunkards, they shall be devoured as stubble fully dry.” Nahum 1:9-10.

• How complete will the final destruction of the wicked be?

“For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall BURN THEM UP, saith the LORD of hosts, that it SHALL LEAVE THEM NEITHER ROOT NOR BRANCH.” Malachi 4:1.

• Does the New Testament talk about the destruction of the wicked? Jesus said;

“Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:” Matthew 7:13

• Does the New Testament speak about the soul dying? Jesus said;

“… but rather fear him which is able to DESTROY BOTH SOUL AND BODY IN HELL.” Matthew 10:28b.

“[the very person] Who shall be punished with everlasting DESTRUCTION from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power;” 2 Thessalonians 1:9

• When will all of this take place? Jesus said;

… the tares [darnel, weeds, the imposters of the good wheat] are gathered and BURNED IN THE FIRE; SO, SHALL IT BE IN THE END OF THIS WORLD [ages].” Mat. 13:40.

• Matthew 25:41 speaks of “everlasting fire” for the wicked. Does this ‘fire upon the wicked’ go out? Jesus said;

Yes, according to the Bible, the fire does go out for the wicked. But we must let the Bible explain itself. We know that Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed with ‘everlasting, or eternal fire’; that fire turned them “into ashes as a warning to “those that after should live ungodly.” The fire is everlasting, but for the consumed wicked… it is out or comes to an end

“as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.” Jude 1:7.
“And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly;”
2 Peter 2:6.

These cities are not burning today. The fire went out when everything was ‘burned up.’

Likewise, everlasting fire will cease its work upon the wicked after it has Turned The Already Dead Wicked To Ashes.

“And ye shall tread down the wicked; for THEY SHALL BE ASHES under the soles of your feet in the day that I SHALL DO THIS, SAITH THE LORD OF HOSTS.” Malachi 4:3.

The fire and its effects are Everlasting, but not the burning of the wicked lost.

The “… everlasting fire, [is] prepared FOR THE DEVIL AND HIS ANGELS:” Matthew 25:41

• Doesn’t Matthew 25:46 say the wicked will receive “everlasting punishment”?

 “And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.” (Matt. 25:46)

NOTE: Notice the words refer to an “everlasting punishment,” is not “everlasting punishing.” Punishing would be ongoing or continuous, while a “punishment” is ONE CONCLUSIVE ACT. The “everlasting punishment of the wicked is DEATH [annihilation], so this death is everlasting. Nowhere in the Bible does it say the wicked will receive a continuing eternal lifeLife and Death are exact opposites.

• What will happen to the saved? They will enjoy the opposite of “perishing,” which is to have Christ’s resurrection life, which is HIS everlasting life.

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish (Gk. apollymi, be utterly destroyed), but have (the) Everlasting Life.” John 3:16.

• What are the wages of sin according to the book of Romans?

“For the wages of sin is death [not eternal suffering]; but the gift of God Is Eternal Life Through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Rom. 6:23.

• What will happen to the Devil, will he also be destroyed with the wicked of mankind?

[Concerning Lucifer] Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness: I will cast thee to the ground, I will lay they before kings, that they may behold thee. Thou hast defiled thy sanctuaries by the multitude of thine iniquities, by the iniquity of thy traffick [peddling as a monger]; therefore I will bring forth a fire from the midst of thee, it shall devour thee, and I will bring thee to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold thee.” Ezekiel 28:17-18.

• Why is it impossible for the wicked to be in the presence of God? This is because;

our God is a ‘consuming’ fire.” Heb. 12:29.

• What example does the Bible use to show that God will destroy the wicked by fire? Peter wrote;

“And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly;” 2 Peter 2:6.

• Where will this fire occur that destroys the wicked?

“But THE HEAVENS AND THE EARTH, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, RESERVED UNTO FIRE AGAINST the day of judgment and perdition [Gk. apoleia, DESTRUCTION] OF UNGODLY MEN.” 2 Peter 3:7.

Both the heavens and the earth were corrupted by Lucifer and both need to be purged and renewed by fire.

• Doesn’t God want us to repent?

“The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, Not Willing That Any Should Perish, But That All Should Come To Repentance.” 2 Peter 3:9.

• What exactly will happen to the whole earth?

“But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the ELEMENTS SHALL MELT WITH FERVENT HEAT, the earth also and the works [of to the Devil and man] that are therein SHALL BE BURNED UP.” 2 Peter 3:10.

• Doesn’t Jude 1:7 talk about eternal fire’?

“Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire. Jude 1:7.

Note that these ‘cities’ are not burning today. The fire went out after everything was Burned Up for Eternity. Likewise, everlasting fire will go out for those wicked who are turned to ashes.

• Where will the fire come from? We have the example of destruction upon the Devil and his cohorts at the end of the Millennium.

“And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and FIRE CAME DOWN FROM GOD OUT OF HEAVEN, and DEVOURED THEM.” Revelation 20:9.

Is the “second death” final?

“And death and hell [Gk. hades, the grave] were cast into The Lake Of Fire. This is the SECOND DEATH.” Revelation 20:14.

• Are there any more verses that talk about the second death?

“But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall Have Their Part In The Lake Which Burneth With Fire and brimstone: which is the Second Death.” Revelation 21:8.

• Will the Devil be burned up completely? No! Will the Devil cease to exist? No!

“Thou [Lucifer] hast defiled thy sanctuaries by the multitude of thine iniquities, by the iniquity of thy traffic [mongered merchandise]; therefore will I bring forth a Fire From The Midst of Thee, it shall devour (Heb. akal, eat at) thee, and I [The Lord] will bring thee to ashes [Heb. eper, worthlessness] upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold thee. (sealed in the “pit”) 19All they that know thee among the people shall be astonished at thee: thou shalt be a terror, and Never Shalt Thou Be [a Terror] Any More. Ezekiel 28:18-19

• What about the verse in Revelation 20:10 where it talks about the devil, the beast and false prophet being tormented for ever and ever. Doesn’t that show that hell fire is forever or eternal?

“And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever (Gk. aion, age upon age).” Rev. 20:10 (KJV)

The pagan tradition that teaches ‘eternal torment of lost souls’ is not true. The verse applies only to the Devil and his angels, not to lost mankind. This religious error has done more to drive people to atheism and insanity than any other religious invention of the Devil. It was widely use in the Catholic church during the middle ages to raise money for their Cathedrals. The idea of ‘eternal torment of lost souls’ is slander upon the loving character of a tender, gracious heavenly Father. This lie has done untold harm to the Christian cause of the gospel.

By contrast, lost mankind will be destroyed “for ever,” meaning “until his death.”

“For this God is our God for ever and ever [age upon age]: he will be our guide even unto death [Heb. mut labben, meaning, as long as he lives] Psalm 48:14 (KJV)

“Then his master shall bring him [his slave] unto the judges; he shall also bring him to the door, or unto the door post; and his master shall bore his ear through with an aul; and he shall [willingly] serve him for ever.” [obviously only ‘until death’]” Exodus 21:6 (KJV)

“But Hannah went not up; for she said unto her husband, I will not go up until the child be weaned, and then I will bring him, that he may appear before the LORD, and there abide for ever.28Therefore also I have lent him to the LORD; as long as he liveth he shall be lent to the LORD. And he worshipped the LORD there.” 1 Samuel 1:22, 28

The wicked lost souls will burn in the hell-fire only ‘as long as they live,’ meaning until they are judged, die and are consumed in ‘hell-fire.’

Questions or Comment?

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