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Author Topic: Gehenna/Valley of Hinnon  (Read 2560 times)

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patmokgoko

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Gehenna/Valley of Hinnon
« on: October 21, 2012, 07:37:19 AM »

Hi family, is there any evidence that the Valley of Hinnom was made a garbage dumb(Gehenna) by the Israelites after captivity
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Kat

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Re: Gehenna/Valley of Hinnon
« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2012, 11:22:55 AM »


Hi patmokgoko,

This is from Blue Letter Bible, virtually the same thing that Ray said about the Valley of Hinnom.


What Is Gehenna?

Another Greek word that is translated hell is "Gehenna." This word is used twelve times in the New Testament with Jesus employing it eleven times. Gehenna is derived from the Hebrew ge hinnom or the "valley of Hinnom." Hinnom was probably the name of a person in ancient Israel. The valley of Hinnom is a deep narrow glen just outside of Jerusalem. It was also called Tophet, or the valley of dead bones. Jeremiah wrote.

The whole valley where dead bodies and ashes are thrown, and all the terraces out to the Kidron Valley on the east as far as the corner of the Horse Gate, will be holy to the LORD. The city will never again be uprooted or demolished (Jeremiah 31:40).

Place Of Child Sacrifices

In Old Testament times this had been the scene of the practice of child-sacrifice under some of the godless kings of Israel. The prophet Jeremiah wrote.

And they have built the high places of Tophet, which is the Valley of the Son of Hinnom, to burn their sons and their daughters in the fire, which I did not command, nor did it come into My heart (Jeremiah 7:31).

To Molech

The children were sacrificed to the false god Molech. The image of Molech had the head of a bull with outstretched arms. A fire burned in the stomach of the idol while the child was placed in the arms and then sacrificed.

Ahaz

Speaking of the evil king Ahaz, the Bible says.

And he made offerings in the valley of the son of Hinnom, and made his sons pass through fire, according to the abominable practices of the nations whom the LORD drove out before the people of Israel (2 Chronicles 28:3).

He made his own sons pass through this horrible place of human sacrifice.

Abominations Stopped By Josiah

During the reign of Josiah the sacrifices were stopped.

And he defiled Topheth, which is in the Valley of the Son of Hinnom, that no man might make his son or his daughter pass through the fire to Molech (2 Kings 23:10).

Place Of Burning Refuse

The valley became the dumping ground for the sewage and refuse of the city. It was a place of crawling worms and maggots. By defiling this place with refuse, Josiah stopped the child sacrifices. Fires burned continually to destroy the garbage and impurities. Hence the name Gehenna came to be used as a symbol of punishment. The prophet Isaiah wrote:

And they shall go forth and look upon the corpses of the ones who have transgressed against Me. For their worm does not die, and their fire is not quenched. They shall be an abhorrence to all flesh (Isaiah 66:24).

From this valley a terrible and putrid smoke arose continually.

Topheth has long been prepared; it has been made ready for the king. Its fire pit has been made deep and wide, with an abundance of fire and wood; the breath of the LORD, like a stream of burning sulfur, sets it ablaze (Isaiah 30:33).

Jesus And Gehenna

Jesus used the symbolism of Gehenna to describe the place of everlasting punishment.

It is better for you to enter into life maimed, than having two hands, to go to Gehenna into the fire that shall never be quenched (Mark 9:43).

Fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into Gehenna (Luke 12:5).

He spoke concerning Gehenna, not only to warn people, but to condemn the hypocritical religious leaders. Jesus said.

Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you travel land and sea to win one proselyte, and when he is won, to make him twice as much a son of Gehenna as yourselves (Matthew 23:15).

Outside The City

The symbolism of Gehenna is also found in its location. Gehenna is a place outside the city of Jerusalem. The ultimate fate of the wicked is suffering outside of the gates of the New Jerusalem.

Comparison To Hades

Gehenna is not Hades. Hades is a temporary place of the dead where only their souls exist. In Gehenna, wicked dead exist in both body and soul. The suffering in Gehenna is eternal while the suffering in Hades is temporal.

Presently Unoccupied

Gehenna, or hell, is presently unoccupied. In the future, when God judges the wicked angels along with evil humanity, then hell, or Gehenna, will become inhabited.

Summary

Gehenna, or the valley of Hinnom, is an actual valley in the city of Jerusalem. In Israel's past, it was used as a place of child sacrifice. From the reign of Josiah onward, it was used as a garbage dump where the fires burned the refuse continuously. Jesus used it as an illustration of the final judgment of the wicked. Gehenna is the permanent place where both the body and the soul are reunited to spend eternity apart from God. It is located outside the new Jerusalem, the place where believers will be with the Lord.

http://www.blueletterbible.org/faq/don_stewart/stewart.cfm?id=168
« Last Edit: October 21, 2012, 11:25:02 AM by Kat »
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Patric

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Re: Gehenna/Valley of Hinnon
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2012, 01:31:56 PM »

Copied from Bible-truths email by L. Ray Lewis

http://bible-truths.com/lake16-D4.htm

IS THERE ETERNAL FIRE AND IMMORTAL WORMS IN GEHENNA?

UNQUENCHED FIRE:

In Mark 9:43-47 two additional concepts are added to the teaching on Gehenna:

    "And if your hand offend you, cut it off: it is better for you to enter into life maimed, than having two hands to go into hell [Gk: 'Gehenna'], into the fire that never shall be quenched: [1] Where their worm dies not, and [2] the fire is not quenched."

Christians have foolishly been taught and foolishly believed that a fire which is never quenched is in fact, an eternal, never-ending fire. This is decidedly not true. A fire which is not quenched is one that is not "put out," for that is what quench means. "Quenched"-Greek: kabah, "expire, extinguish, put out, quench." Who shall we trust on this most important doctrine: Christian theologians or God's Word? Here is proof that the phrase "shall never be quenched" never means endless or eternal in the Scriptures:

    [1] "Because they have forsaken me, and have burned incense unto other gods, that they might provoke me to anger with all the works of their hands; therefore my wrath shall be kindled against this place, and shall not be quenched" (II Kings 22:17 & II Chron. 34:25).

Did that fire that "shall not be quenched," burn eternally? Is it still burning in Jerusalem today? NO.

    [2] "And the streams thereof shall be turned into pitch, and the dust thereof into brimstone, and the land thereof shall become burning pitch. It shall not be quenched night nor day; the smoke thereof shall go up for ever: from generation to generation it shall lie waste; none shall pass through it for ever and ever" (Isa. 34:9-10).

Let's get real for a moment shall we. If this fire was to never be quenched because it was eternal and endless, just how do we explain the fact that God said there would be owls, porcupines and hedgehogs living there (Verse 11)? And that there would be thorns in her palaces, nettles and brambles in the fortresses growing quite nicely (Verse 13)? Do these plants not burn in fire? Do wild animals and birds like living in fire and smoke?

    [3] "See you not what they do in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem? The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead their dough, to make cakes to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto other gods, that they may provoke me to anger. Therefore thus says the Lord GOD; Behold, mine anger and my fury shall be poured out upon this place, upon man, and upon beast, and upon the trees of the field, and upon the fruit of the ground; and it shall burn, and shall not be quenched" (Jer. 7:17-20).

Well what have we here. If this not to be quenched fire is eternal, then we finally have a verse of Scripture that affirms that "the children" will be burned along with the men, beasts, trees, and fruit. Not only do Christians believe in "immortal souls, and "immortal worms," but now we have immoral beasts, trees, and fruit that supposedly will burn in this not to be quenched fire for all eternity.

Listen, it matters not if one contends that a few of these prophecies are for the yet future, or that they have been all totally fulfilled as Preterists contend. If they have already been fulfilled, and fires not quenched, are endless and eternal, then those fires kindled way back BC must STILL BE BURNING, but they are not still burning. And if this is a Futurists prophecy yet to be fulfilled, then we are faced with torturing not only immortal beasts, trees, and fruit, but CHILDREN as well. Am I going to fast for anyone? Maybe it's time to come out of Babylon.

    [4] "But if ye will not hearken unto me to hallow the sabbath day, and not to bear a burden, even entering in at the gates of Jerusalem on the sabbath day; then will I kindle a fire in the gates thereof, and it shall devour the palaces of Jerusalem, and it shall not be quenched" (Jer. 17:27).

Again we ask: are the gates of Jerusalem still burning today? Or will the physical wooden gates of Jerusalem burn forever? Eternally? Do we now have Scriptural proof for "immortal wooden gates?"

    [5] "And say to the forest of the south, Hear the word of the LORD; Thus says the Lord GOD; Behold, I will kindle a fire in thee, and it shall devour every green tree in thee, and every dry tree: the flaming flame shall not be quenched, and all faces from the south to the north shall be burned therein. And all flesh shall see that I the LORD have kindled it: it shall not be quenched" (Ezek. 20:47:48).

More immortal trees? And how can they burn forever when they are devoured?-'burn up, consume, devour' (Strong's #398).

In every instance of fire not quenched in Scriptures, it never stands for endless or eternal fire, burning immortal wood, immortal trees, immortal fruit, immortal beasts, immortal children and immortal men. Why then should we think that Jesus was speaking of "immortal" worms that die not and endless eternal fire not quenched? (Mark 9:44). It's unscriptural and it is absurd.

Okay, but doesn't the Scriptures also speak of "eternal fire?" No, the Scriptures don't, but one verse in some bibles do:

ETERNAL FIRE:

    "Even as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set for an example suffering the vengeance of ETERNAL FIRE" (Jude 7).

Well there it is: Sodom and Gomorrah and all the cities of the plain are suffering the vengeance of ETERNAL fire. Or are they?

This is the only time "eternal" fire is used in the King James, however, "everlasting" fire (translated from the same Greek word aionios) is used twice (Matt. 18:8 and 25:41).

Now then, how could it be endless or eternal, seeing that the area of Sodom and Gomorrah and that whole plain on which there were multiple cities, are not on fire today? Nor was it on fire in Christ's time, or in Israel's time, or in any time since Abraham. The Greek word aion, translated "eternal" and "everlasting" in these verses means "age" or pertaining to an age. Neither the Hebrew nor the Greek manuscripts had a word that can be properly and accurately translated as either "eternal" "everlasting," or "endless time" (in fact, authorities have stated that no language on earth before the second century AD had a single word that mean "eternity" or "endless time.") Eonian or age-abiding fire is decidedly not eternal, never-ending fire.

Gehenna symbolized and represented to the Jewish mind, JUDGMENT. And as such Jesus uses it in describing His judgments first upon His followers, and then upon the whole world. "Fire and worms" do not present a pleasant picture, and the Judgments of Christ, likewise, are not pleasant:

    "Now no chastening for the present seems to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised [trained] thereby" (Heb. 12:11).

The "eternal fire" of Jude 7 is no longer burning in Sodom and Gomorrah, seeing that it was not "eternal" but "eonian" and therefore is no longer burning. Many natural forest fires through history have never been quenched, but they are no longer burning. The fire from God in Jerusalem as recorded in Jer. 17:27, likewise is no longer burning, Yet it was not extinguished. They burned themselves out. It merely means that these fires will not be put out or extinguished, or quenched, but will cease upon completion of their purpose.

So also is the case with their "worms that die not." There was fire and worms in the garbage dump of Gehenna, and they both had a part to play in the destruction of the flesh of animals and dead criminals (plus other garbage). But none were immortal or eternal. One stupid web site on the subject of hell, which people send me continually, states that the long 6 foot tube worms at the bottom of the ocean found around smokers (vents from subterranean lava), are the worms of hell which they say is under the crust of the earth. Nonsense, the worms of these Scriptures are specifically identified.

WORM DIES NOT:

The word "worm" appears in most bibles three times in Mark 9. However, Mark 9:48 is the only time it appears in the earliest and best Greek manuscripts. Mark 9:44 is spurious, and Mark 9:45b ("...into the fire that never shall be quenched") and 9:46 are all spurious. The one time it is used in verse 44, it is a quotation from Isa. 66:24. Worm is translated from the Hebrew word Itola, and is defined as "a maggot." It's one time use in the Greek is from skolex, and also is defined as 'a maggot.' These are not tube worms at the bottom of the ocean, but rather maggots. And as any school boy knows, maggots are not immortal, but rather in a few short days turn into common house flies, which then lay more eggs on garbage, produce more maggots which then produce more flies to lay more eggs... And hence, they do not die [out] but just keep reproducing over and over. I am sure that some of the flies at your last picnic may have been descendants of the very maggots of which Jesus spoke of from the Gehenna city garbage dump at Jerusalem.

Now then, what was the purpose of these maggots and fire in the valley of Gehenna? To destroy that which is putrid and worthless; to purge; to purify the city of its garbage. That was their physical purpose and Jesus has the same thing in mind when He uses these symbols, word pictures, and analogies to represent His spiritual sin-purging judgments.

We know that Peter said, "For the time is come that judgment must begin at the House of God..." (I Pet. 1:17); and that Paul said, "For if we would judge ourselves..." (I Cor. 10:31); and Jesus said that we ourselves must "Agree with our adversary quickly," and we ourselves must "pluck it [our eye] out and cast it from us," etc. But do all these things constitute being judged by "worms and fire?" Absolutely. Gehenna fire does not represent eternal torture in literal flames upon the wicked. It represents cleansing and purging of His called and chosen Elect, now, in this Church age.

Listen: We like Jesus are to be a Sacrifice:

    "I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God..." (Rom. 12:1).

And just what is it that Jesus will do to all and every "sacrifice?"

    "For everyone shall be salted with fire." (Mark 9:49)

And just "who" is the everyone of this verse? Read the previous verse. The everyone is all those for whom "...their worms dies not and the fire is not quenched" (Verse 48). And just "who" is the their of this verse? Read the previous verse. The their is "And if thine eye..." The thine is YOU. You are the thine, and the their, and the everyone which shall be "...salted with fire."

And just when will this fire of which Jesus spoke, start burning?

    "I am come to send fire on the earth; and what will I, if it be already kindled?" (Luke 12:49).

    "Fire, came I to cast upon the earth,-and what can I wish, if, already, it hath been, kindled?" (Rotherham).

This spiritual Gehenna purging and purifying fire of Christ was already kindled when He called His disciples, and it has been with us ever since, and I can personally testify that it is with us today in every life that Jesus is purging from the rotten flesh of the carnal mind.

ELEVEN TIMES ON FOUR OCCASIONS JESUS SPEAKS OF GEHENNA

    [1] Sermon on the mount: Matt. 5:22, 29, 30; 18:9 are all the same one occasion.

    [2] Warning the apostles Whom to fear: Matt. 10:28 & Luke 12:5 are both the same one occasion.

    [3] Offending little ones: Matt. 18:9 [see also 8] & Mark 9:43,45,57 are the same one occasion.

    [4] Upbraiding the Pharisees: Matt. 23:15 & 33 are both the same occasion. (James 3:6 uses Gehenna making 12).

We will now go through the use of Gehenna on four occasions (once by James):

[1] Matt. 5:22, 29, 30

"...but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell [Gehenna] fire" (Matt. 5:22).

Now we already discussed the absurdity of being tortured in literal fire for all eternity (as Christian orthodoxy teaches) for calling a brother "fool." It is not, in fact, as egregious a sin as is calling a brother raca, which carries a rather benign penalty of being brought before the Council.

    "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 [Gehenna].

This is the very same penalty for calling a brother fool. Mark well what Jesus is saying. One does not avoid Gehenna by plucking out one's eye. No, not at all, that plucking out or cutting off of one member IS GEHENNA FIRE, but it can be handled one member at a time, whereas to not deal with these sins when they arise will result in ALL of the person being "cast" into this purging spiritual fire of Gehenna, and God won't ask you if you want to volunteer first.

    "...for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell"

Same scenario as above.

[2] Matt. 10:28 & Luke 12:5

    "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 [Gehenna].

    "But I will forewarn you whom ye shall fear: Fear him, which after he hath killed hath power to cast into hell [Gehenna]; yea, I say unto you, Fear him."

Luke's account is the same as Matthew's, however, it is a shorter version. From Matthew we learn that God is "able to destroy" our very soul in Gehenna. But that is not a wicked thing, but a good thing. It is a good thing to loose (apollumi-destroy) our carnal soul for God's sake, and this destruction of the soul for God takes place in Gehenne. See Matt. 10:39 losing (destroying, "mortifying the deeds of the body" Rom. 8:13) takes place in spiritual Gehenna, Verse 28.

[3] Matt. 18:8-9 & Mark 9:43, 45, 47

    "Wherefore if your hand or your foot offend thee, cut them off, and cast them from you: it is better for you to enter into life halt or maimed, rather than having two hands or two feet to be cast into everlasting [eonian] fire. And if your eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from you: it is better for you to enter into life with one eye, rather than having two eyes to be cast into hell [Gehenna] fire" (Matt. 18:8-9).

This is the very same teaching Jesus gave on the Mount, but we now have one added factor. The "Gehenna fire" of verse 9 is also called "eonian fire" in verse 8. They are therefore the same. Eonian fire is Gehenna fire and Gehenna fie is eonian fire. This phrase "eonian fire" is found only one other time in Scripture:

    "Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting [Gk: 'aionios/eonian' or 'age-abiding'] fire, prepared for the devil and his angels" (Matt. 25:41).

And so Matt. 18:8 is a pivotal Scripture in our understanding of Gehenna fire, everlasting fire, and lake of fire. The spiritual Gehenna fire, is the very same eonian fire which are used to Judge Gods people-the House of God. Then Jesus tells us it is also the very same fire that will be used to Judge Satan's messengers. And these messengers/angels of Satan are his "transformed" [Gk: metaschēmatizō, 'disguised'] ministers of righteousness: "Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works" (II Cor. 11:15).

All of Satans ministers-the deceived clergymen of the Church, MYSTERY BABYLON THE GREAT, MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND THE ABOMINATION OF THE EARTH, will not be judged until the Resurrection to Judgment at the Great White Throne, and that Judgment is in The Lake of Fire. Thus we now have it on the authority of Jesus Christ, that Gehenna fire, eonian fire, and lake of fire, are all the same spiritual fire of God, seeing that "Our God is a consuming fire" (Heb. 12:29), and God does not change.

Jesus says that Gehenna fire is eonian, not eternal. And the ministers of Satan will go into this eonian fire. Now then if the fire is eonian for us, then it is likewise eonian for them. We only go through God's Gehenna/eonian fire for our eon, our life. A man's life is an eon, his eon. So eonian fire cannot be eternal, or we, God's chosen Elect, would go through Gehenna fire for all eternity. Now then, since it is only a temporary fire for us, the very SAME fire can be only temporary for the rest of humanity as well. Truly, the Scriptures do not contradict.

On the very same occasion recorded in Mark 9, we have two more additions to this teaching: The mention of "their worms die not," and "everyone shall be salted with fire."

We already discussed the meaning of these worms earlier in this paper. But this added phrase of our Lord is very instructive. Notice again that Jesus is speaking to His twelve apostles (Mark 9:35), not the multitudes. So, when He states that, "everyone shall be salted with fire" in Verse 49, He is telling His Apostles that THEY will be salted with fire. Hence this Gehenna fire cannot be eternal, but it is good, "Salt IS GOOD" (Verse 50).

This is admittedly a strange phrase, as technically we do not "salt" anything "with fire." It is a kind of play on words. As we salt food to bring out its best, so God will salt us with fire, to bring out our best. But once more, it is not eternal torture, it is temporary purification.

[4] Matt. 23:15 & 33

    "Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves"

    "You serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell [Gehenna]?"

This one might seem a little more severe on the surface than the others, but it's not. In the first verse Jesus says that they turn their proselytes into children of hell or Gehenna. Let's think about that for a moment. I have now been accused, literally hundreds of times, of leading people into hell, and that I will receive so much greater punishment and damnation from God for leading "others" into hell.

Imagine that? One person can be responsible for, and the single cause of another person loosing their salvation and then being tortured in literal fire for all eternity, and God can't or won't do anything about it. I guess it's just a matter of being at the wrong place at the wrong time. If all those hundreds of thousands of people had just not come to our site for some reason, they would then be saved, but now they are being lead into the eternal torment of an eternal hell. What a Christian crock.

Imagine the mother and father of such a person that would be consigned to an eternity of torture because of my false and deceitful teachings, asking God why He didn't close me down? or prevent their daughter from coming to my site? or protecting them from being deceived by me in the first place? How hard could that be for God Almighty to save a precious son or daughter from being deceived by me? But no, it is assumed that I outsmarted God, and conquered one of His dear Sons or Daughters, and became the sole reason for them loosing their salvation. What do you suppose God would say to such a scenario? Well as it will not and cannot happen, we don't need to surmise such utter unscriptural nonsense.

Did the Pharisees encompass land and sea to make one proselyte and then turn that convert in a "child of Gehenna?" Yes, of course they did, Jesus said they did. But will that "child of Gehenna" loose salvation and be tortured eternally in some Christian hellhole of fire because they were outsmarted by these Satan-inspired clergymen? Of course not. Not only will those the Pharisees deceived and turned into children of Gehenna not loose salvation, but this hypocritical blind leaders of the blind will not loose salvation either.

Verse 33 tells us how they will be saved. They will be saved by "the DAMNATION of Gehenna." What is this damnation? It is JUDGMENT. We have gone over this many times in our "Lake of Fire" series. The word "damnation" is from the Greek word, krisis, and it means "tribunal, justice, accusation, condemnation, damnation, JUDGMENT." What specific judgment is Jesus talking about? Why the damnation of JUDGMENT OF GEHENNA. Is not this "judgment" then an evil thing? No, it is a RIGHTEOUS thing! It's just that the old English word "damnation" sounds so terrible and awful, when it is not.

It can be a stern word, but remember that Jesus is coming to judge the world in "righteousness," (Acts 17:31)

    "Because He hath appointed a day, in the which He will judge the world in righteousness by that Man [Jesus] Whom He hath ordained; wherein He hath given assurance unto all men, in that He hath raised Him from the dead."

The word judge in this verse is from the same Greek word krisis, and it is not an evil word. Let's back up a few verses and we will see exactly how fair and good this word is krisis/judge is:

    "Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment [Gk: krisis], mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone" (Matt. 23:23).

Look at the company this word krisis keeps: "righteousness, assurance, mercy, and faith." Oh how the Church has perverted the simple and righteous words of God. Jesus upbraided the Pharisees for not exercising proper krisis/judgment with Israel. Listen: to judge, is to set things right. Men can only make feeble attempts at doing this properly, but I assure you that when God Almighty sets His hand to "set things right," they WILL BE SET RIGHT! Just as God has brought many of us to our knees for the sins we have committed, so will God bring this whole world to its knees. It will be emotionally traumatic and painful, but it will be a good thing. Men will be forced to look at themselves with open spiritual eyes, and they will HATE what they see. They will eventually desire with their whole heart to be cleansed and rid of all these carnal ways.

THE FINAL NAIL IN THE COFFIN FOR ETERNAL HELL FIRE

The Apostle James proves all that Jesus said with regards to Gehenna/hell fire.

    "And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defiles the whole body, and sets on fire the course of nature; and it [the tongue] is set on fire of hell [Gk: gehenna]."

I'll admit that this does not sound like an easy Scriptures. How is the tongue set on fire by Gehenna? What does that mean? The answer is found in the whole chapter beginning with verse 1:

    "My brethren, be not many masters [teachers], knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation [Gk: krima, condemnation, judgment]" (James 3:1).

Teachers must be very careful in what they teach, the words that come out of their mouth, because if they are not correct words, then their Judgment will be much more severe than with others. Now verse 2:

    "For in many things we [James includes himself] offend all. If any man [including himself] offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body" (James 3:2).

It is the "words" that are spoken by the "tongue" that will come into Judgment.

Notice what Jesus taught:

    "But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: these are things which defile the man" (Matt. 15:18-20).

    "But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment" (Matt. 12:36).

    "O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks" (Matt. 12:34).

And what does Jeremiah tell us is the disposition of the universal heart of man?

    "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked [Heb: 'exceedingly weak']: who can know it?" (Jer. 17:9).

Jesus used the examples of our eyes, hands, and feet that are used as instruments of offense, and must therefore be spiritually cut off. And this spiritual cutting off occurs in Gehenna fire."

James is merely adding another member of our bodies, the tongue, into this same symbolic teaching. Notice how James liken the destructive power of just "little things" in nature, to the very small tongue of the human body:

A literal very small bit in a horses mouth can turn the whole body of the beast, with very little effort (James 3:3).

A literal very small helm [rudder] can turn great ships in fierce winds, with very little effort (Verse 4).

A literal little fire can burn a great amount of material, even a whole forest, with very little effort (Verse 5).

And so the metaphor, "the tongue is a fire," (the tongue is not a literal fire), means that it is like a literal fire in certain ways. What ways? [1] "the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity" and it [2] "defiles the whole body" and [3] "sets on fire the course [wheel] of nature" (Verse 6).

The phrase "course of nature" is translated as "the wheel of our natural life" by Rotherham's Emphasized Bible, and as "the wheel of our lineage" by The Concordant Literal New Testament. The meaning is something like Elton John's song "The Circle of Life" from Disney's, The Lion King.

And James informs us that no man can tame this little monster called the tongue. For if he could, then he would be "a perfect man, and able to bridle [to curb, conquer, and control] the whole body" (Verse 2).

And what is the solution to bridling the tongue (which speaks for and in behalf of the deceitful "heart")? Why to "fight fire with fire." Set the tongue on fire with Gehenna fire-Gehenna JUDGMENT! (Verse 6). Right there is the solution to the whole enigma of what is Gehenna fire; what is eonian [falsely called everlasting] fire; and what is the LAKE of fire.

Gehenna fire is first and foremost for Christ's disciples (the Elect), and is first taught by Jesus on the sermon on the mount to His disciples. It is therefore not literal fire, nor is it everlasting fire. "Gehenna fire" (Matt. 18:9 is also called "eonian [NOT 'everlasting'] fire" in Matt. 18:8, and also in Matt. 25:41 where this eonian fire prepared for the devil and his ministers will be judged in the resurrection to Judgment in "The Lake of Fire" (Rev. 20:15 & 21:8). The Gehenna fire, eonian fire, lake of fire, are all the Judgment of God. These fires are all the same ONE fire that come from the same ONE God, and "Our [One] God is a consuming FIRE" (Heb. 12:29).

And so Gehenna fire has nothing to do with eternal torture, but rather with eonian chastisement and Judgment-for the House of God's elect, now, and for those who obey not the Gospel of God, in the Judgment of Gehenna/lake of fire, later.

I understand how severe the trials and tribulations of life can be, but take heart, the purging fire of Gehenna is not for naught:

    "I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that you may be rich; and white raiment, that you may be clothed, and that the shame of your nakedness do not appear; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see. As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent. Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me. To him that overcomes will I grant to sit with Me in My throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with My Father in His throne. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says unto the churches" (Rev. 3:18-22).
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Craig

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Re: Gehenna/Valley of Hinnon
« Reply #3 on: October 22, 2012, 09:42:40 AM »

Who's L. Ray Lewis?

Does he play football for Baltimore, I think?
« Last Edit: October 22, 2012, 10:18:07 AM by Craig »
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Craig

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Re: Gehenna/Valley of Hinnon
« Reply #4 on: October 22, 2012, 06:28:15 PM »

We're just messing with you Patric. :) ;)

You were probably watching the Baltimore game while posting.  That would me my story. 8)
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Patric

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Re: Gehenna/Valley of Hinnon
« Reply #5 on: October 22, 2012, 06:37:37 PM »

HA HA HA HA talk about your classic typos!
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