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Thread: Justification of Eternal Punishment

  1. #1
    MannyO
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    Justification of Eternal Punishment

    Have any of you heard of Cliff Knechtle? He's an apologetic pastor who visits college campuses, discussing theological issues with students. I agree with much of what he says - such as his arguments for the existence of God, and his arguments against moral relativism. Though much of what he teaches is intellectually sound, there's also much falseness that he espouses, such as the 'acceptance' of Jesus Christ, and everlasting Hell.

    I was watching one of his videos the other day. In the video a person asks him about Hell and he responds with an analogy. Through the analogy Cliffe attempts to explain why unending Hell, is a just, valid and deserving punishment. His reasoning is that offences committed against higher authority figures deserve more severe punishments. Thus an offence committed against God - the highest authority - demands the most severe punishment.

    Here is the video that contains Cliffe's analogy. It starts from 16.05, ending at 19:13:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UdlgI6oh7oM

    Let me ask the following question, in response to Cliffe's analogy:

    Why is that crimes comitted against higher authorities (e.g. police officer, president) should be deserving of harsher penalties or punishments?

    Is it because society says so? If so, what makes society right?

    I believe that Cliffe's analogy is faulty and incorrect. He seems to imply that the more authority a person has, the more valuable or worthy he or she is. But don't we, as humans, all have the same level of value? What is it about authority that gives a person more (perceived) value?

    Isn't it unfair to say that the penalty for hitting the president should be greater than hitting a teacher? If I hit the president, why should the value of my penalty go up dramatically just because he has more authority? I believe that the penalty for hitting the president or hitting the chief of police or hitting a teacher, should be the same. All are humans and therefore have the same value. So the value of the punishment should be the same. It should unaffected by status, titles, authority, age, race, or any other such external factor. Our legal system(s) should be objective.

    If a civilian who abuses an authority figure should receive a more severe punishment; should those in authority who commit an abusive crime also receive a more severe punishment? If the president hits a common civilian, should he be dealt with more severely, because of the authority he possesses?

    Now, we know that the highest authority is God. When we 'slap God in the face' (as Cliffe puts it), offending Him, by breaking His Law, His solution is of course to punish us. This is so that we might learn from punishment. But if a person is forever being punished - via eternal hell - how will they ever reach the end goal, for which that punishment was intended? Even human authority figures grasp the concept of remedial punishment. How much more does God? In dealing with a rebellious child a parent might turn the child over, give a few slaps, and that's it. They don't perpetually slap their child. If wicked human beings (Matthew 7:11) don't even go to such torturous lengths, what makes Cliffe think that the good God (Luke 18:19) would perpetually punish His own creations? And not even just continuously punish them, but punish them in the most wicked of ways - roasting and burning in inextinguishable fire! The doctrine of Hell is not even punishment, it's abuse. Far be it for the loving God, who is Love, to abuse anyone. And to do so would essentially mean He'd be abusing Himself, because we are all, to some extent, extensions of Him.

  2. #2
    LIFETIME MEMBER jamie's Avatar
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    Cliff's point on eternal punishment is moot.

    He has not dealt with us according to our sins nor punished us according to our iniquities. For as the heavens are high above the earth so great is His mercy toward those who fear Him.

    As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us. (Psalm 103:10-12 NKJV)

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    All that Adam and Eve did was eat forbidden fruit and caused the fall of all of humanity.

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    TOL Legend musterion's Avatar
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    much falseness...such as the 'acceptance' of Jesus Christ
    "Accept" has essentially the same meaning as "receive," which is abundantly seen as quite biblical here:

    http://biblehub.com/greek/edexanto_1209.htm

    So...

    KJV: And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.

    HCSB: ...and with every unrighteous deception among those who are perishing. They perish because they did not accept the love of the truth in order to be saved.
    Those upon whom God will take flaming vengeance refuse to receive/accept the love of the truth, meaning they reject the Gospel, meaning they refuse to receive/accept Christ in order that they might be saved.

    So you are mistaken.
    "There is one thing worse than going to Hell. That would be going to Hell and having it be a surprise."
    Terence Mc Lean

    [most will be very surprised]


    Everyone who has not believed the Gospel of grace is not saved, no matter what else they believe or do.
    By that measure, how many professing Christians are on their way to the Lake of Fire?

  5. #5
    MannyO
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    Quote Originally Posted by musterion View Post
    "Accept" has essentially the same meaning as "receive," which is abundantly seen as quite biblical here:

    http://biblehub.com/greek/edexanto_1209.htm

    So...

    Those upon whom God will take flaming vengeance refuse to receive/accept the love of the truth, meaning they reject the Gospel, meaning they refuse to receive/accept Christ in order that they might be saved.

    So you are mistaken.
    The words 'receive' and 'accept' are really quite different, though they seem essentially the same. Let me provide a biblical example of how the two words differ. In John 20:19-22, when Jesus appeared to the disciples and breathed on them saying: 'Receive the Holy Spirit'; do you think He was requiring their consent, or acceptance, to receive it? Did Jesus ask them, 'Who wants to accept the Holy Spirit?'. Similarly at Pentecost what consent or acceptance was required of them before they received the Spirit? Was it their choice to allow the Holy Spirit to fill them and cause them to speak in tongues? (Acts 2:4)

    Now let me ask you, Musterion... who or what is God that we can decide to accept or reject Him? Do you know that there are many things in life which you do not, and cannot, choose to reject. Can you choose not to be stricken with an illness? Can you choose not to be affected by gravity? Can you reject death? So if you, sir, cannot even reject and deny these physical things, what makes you think that you can reject the most powerful of all that is spiritual... God Himself?

    The doctrine of accepting Christ is not just about the possibility of acceptance but also the possibility of rejection. If you allow for one you must allow for the other. By saying that people can accept Christ, one must also automatically say that they can reject him. And therein lies the lie! But I am here saying to you that it is impossible to reject God, and so it is also impossible to accept Him.

    Consider Saul on his way to Damascus, when he was stopped by Christ... what choice did he have as to whether to obey Christ's command: 'Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do' (Acts 9:6)? Doesn't the word 'must' imply that it was a necessity for Saul to do it?

    Do you think that Saul, after having had the Lord of lords appear to him, could just have carried onto Damascus as if nothing had happened? But if you believe in the doctrine of accepting Christ, you have to allow for the possibility that Saul could have turned Christ down, and passed Him up on His 'offer'.

    This is what is insinuated by the doctrine of accepting Christ: that when it comes to God, we have free choice. I tell you, plain and simply: "No we don't!"

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    LIFETIME MEMBER jamie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MannyO View Post
    This is what is insinuated by the doctrine of accepting Christ: that when it comes to God, we have free choice. I tell you, plain and simply: "No we don't!"
    Right, God's call is irresistible. We can do it the easy way or the hard way but we can't beat God.

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    The Bible says clearly that the wages of sin is death, not eternal conscious torment in hell.

    Romans 6:23
    For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

    Cliff is mistaken if he believes in the infernal doctrine.

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    LIFETIME MEMBER jamie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Timotheos View Post
    The Bible says clearly that the wages of sin is death, not eternal conscious torment in hell.
    Cliff is promoting Satan's lie, "Then the serpent said to the woman, 'You will not surely die.'" (Genesis 3:4 NKJV)

  9. #9
    TOL Legend chrysostom's Avatar
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    the answer is as simple as the second death
    the questions are also simple
    does God want you to suffer eternally?
    no
    can God do something about it?
    yes
    a voice crying in the wilderness :chrysost:

  10. #10
    Over 500 post club Word based mystic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jamie View Post
    Cliff is promoting Satan's lie, "Then the serpent said to the woman, 'You will not surely die.'" (Genesis 3:4 NKJV)
    yes. also add that to genesis 3:22 he might stretch out his hand, and take also from the tree of life, and eat, and live forever "-- 23therefore the LORD God sent him out from the garden of Eden

    God did not want man to live forever in that state of decay and sin and misery.

    It was never the Fathers heart to have never ending torture.

    Fathers heart and never ending torture is contradictory to any loving creator.

    rather like scripture says and timotheos quotes, the wages of sin is death
    and they shall perish
    punishment will happen and perish/death is the eternal judgement.
    no one or any creature has never ending life unless they are in CHRIST.

    only those in Christ are imperishable and indestructible
    all the rest are bound for the end of the ages destruction.
    Last edited by Word based mystic; April 14th, 2015 at 06:46 AM.

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    TOL Legend chrysostom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Word based mystic View Post

    It was never the Fathers heart to have never ending torture.

    Fathers heart and never ending torture is contradictory to any loving creator.
    .
    amen
    a voice crying in the wilderness :chrysost:

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    Over 4000 post club Caino's Avatar
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    There is the choice of life eternal or death, annihilation, cessation of existence. Lakes of fire and eternal torment are fabrications on the part of the priest to keep the flock afraid, for their own good of coarse.

    Eternal torment would make God eternally evil.

    "Mortal man was never the property of the archdeceivers. Jesus did not die to ransom man from the clutch of the apostate rulers and fallen princes of the spheres. The Father in heaven never conceived of such crass injustice as damning a mortal soul because of the evil doing of his ancestors."UB

  13. The Following User Says Thank You to Caino For Your Post:

    freelight (January 22nd, 2017)

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    TOL Legend chrysostom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Caino View Post
    eternal torment is a fabrication on the part of the priest to keep the flock afraid, for their own good of coarse.

    .
    why did you have to say that?

    it detracts from your post

    big time
    a voice crying in the wilderness :chrysost:

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    Over 4000 post club Caino's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chrysostom View Post
    why did you have to say that?

    it detracts from you post

    big time
    Because that's who writes scripture, the literate, elite priest class. Starting with the shamans and medicine man, evolved religion over thousands of years has grown into the professional priest class. Over time they have incorporated true events and the wisdom of the ages into their records and removed other material that did not support beliefs contemporary to their writing, but still, that's who writes and or decides what goes into scripture. Then for control purposes, they tell the flock that God wrote it.

    After the Church at Rome made the final list of which books made the cut, they sealed Christianity into a 4th century understanding of God and worldview. It served a purpose for a time in a much different age, but today this stagnant practice of burying the talents under the rock of superstition has turned off thinking man. The Church is shrinking, dying.

    "Mortal man was never the property of the archdeceivers. Jesus did not die to ransom man from the clutch of the apostate rulers and fallen princes of the spheres. The Father in heaven never conceived of such crass injustice as damning a mortal soul because of the evil doing of his ancestors."UB

  16. #15
    TOL Legend chrysostom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Caino View Post
    Because that's who writes scripture, the literate, elite priest class. Starting with the shamans and medicine man, evolved religion over thousands of years has grown into the professional priest class. Over time they have incorporated true events and the wisdom of the ages into their records and removed other material that did not support beliefs contemporary to their writing, but still, that's who writes and or decides what goes into scripture. Then for control purposes, they tell the flock that God wrote it.

    After the Church at Rome made the final list of which books made the cut, they sealed Christianity into a 4th century understanding of God and worldview. It served a purpose for a time in a much different age, but today this stagnant practice of burying the talents under the rock of superstition has turned off thinking man. The Church is shrinking, dying.
    your bitterness exposes you
    and
    not the church
    a voice crying in the wilderness :chrysost:

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