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aionian punishment
« on: October 24, 2012, 10:35:41 PM »

I know there are a few places here that discuss and talk about eonian punishment.  I know that Mr. Smith has spoken about it on several occasions, and written about it as well.  My query is this … what does this punishment include, or what exactly is it?  After judgement if that's where you go then you can go to punishment, where you are cast into outer darkness, and there is weeping, and gnashing of teeth, but what are the punishments? Not to be smart here,  but do you get a spanking for telling a white lie? Or do you get your hand cut off for stealing?  I have been thinking on this for a while and I believe at times I judge other people harshly because I forget we are all the same clay, just some are eating vessels, and some chamber vessels. I remember Ray saying people will be surprised to find out what their punishments will be. Does he teach more on this somewhere? I also know punishment has to do with correction, and making things right. Apologizing to people can do this is they are able to accept, is this a correcting punishment?, to apologize to all you have wronged?  Am I right to wonder about this? If I die tomorrow, and I am not chosen, should I be able to know what I have gotten myself into?


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Re: aionian punishment
« Reply #1 on: October 25, 2012, 12:17:10 AM »

Hi Gregory,
You have some valid questions that would take some time to answer.
Let me suggest that in general what God is doing among the human species on the earth is not punishment but rather training for a higher calling that will come eventually. In my view the main thing that God is teaching us is that we are not independent or self sufficient. We need God in order to live, both now and in the future and for all of the ages.
So when our training is completed, we should be able to acknowledge without any remaining doubt that we need God, we cannot continue to exist without God and that God is our all in all. Then and only then will God be able to grant us added powers and responsibilities to carry out His perfect plan for the future that God desires to share with all of His children.
Indiana bob


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Re: aionian punishment
« Reply #2 on: October 25, 2012, 11:34:56 AM »

Hi Greg,

I know there are a few places here that discuss and talk about eonian punishment.  I know that Mr. Smith has spoken about it on several occasions, and written about it as well.  My query is this … what does this punishment include, or what exactly is it?  After judgement if that's where you go then you can go to punishment, where you are cast into outer darkness, and there is weeping, and gnashing of teeth, but what are the punishments?

So it's those that come up in resurrection to condemnation/judgment that you are asking about.

John 5:28  Do not marvel at this, for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves shall hear His voice,
v. 29  and shall come forth, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have practiced evil to the resurrection of condemnation.

Well we see in Scripture that those that come up in condemnation, in the second resurrection will go into the Lake of fire.

Rev 20:14 And death and the unseen were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death-the lake of fire.
v. 15 And if anyone was not found written in the scroll of life, he was cast into the lake of fire."

So these people resurrected are in the lake of fire, which we know is Christ and the elect and where is that? When Jesus Christ returns, He comes "down out of heaven" to take over rule of this earth/world, the way of the world will be dramatically changed, it will become a "new earth."
Rev 21:1  Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more.
v. 2  And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her Husband.
Rev 21:3  And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, "Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be His people, and God Himself will be with them as their God.

The elect will have met Christ in the air and return and rule with Him. So you have all the condemned people resurrected back on earth... now what?
1Co 3:13  each one's work shall be revealed. For the Day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try each one's work as to what kind it is.
v. 14  If anyone's work which he built remains, he shall receive a reward.
v. 15  If anyone's work shall be burned up, he shall suffer loss. But he shall be saved, yet so as by fire.

This "fire" (Christ and the elect) is what will judge them, there will be an army of the elect to enforce Christ rule. They will have been resurrected in power and glory and will be ever present (won't need sleep, won't get tired) and there will be no crime from the wicked people. They people on earth will not be able to hide or sneak around and do wickedness, Christ and the elect will see all, nothing will escape their eyes.   

Isa 30:20  And Jehovah gives you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction; yet your teachers shall not be removed into a corner any more, but your eyes shall see your teachers.

Also there will be a rather great force of people raised physical in the second resurrection, I would think they would be given positions to serve and help Christ immediately to keep order. Think about all the righteous people from the OT (Heb 11), they will not be in the first resurrection, but are already servants of God's. Of course they were carnal when they died, but I believe they will quickly serve and obey God in this new world.

The daily living and correction and purging is how the people will be judged. There will be hard core criminals that will be raised up, people who have learned habitual wickedness for years in their past life. I would think they would need to be dealt with more harshly "many stripes," but they will do no harm under Christ's rule. Christ is now preparing the army He will need and He will have enough to rule with power and authority.

Rev 14:6  And I saw another messenger flying in mid-heaven, having good news age-during to proclaim to those dwelling upon the earth, and to every nation, and tribe, and tongue, and people,
v. 7  saying in a great voice, `Fear ye God, and give to Him glory, because come did the hour of His judgment, and bow ye before Him who did make the heaven, and the land, and sea, and fountains of waters.'
v. 8  And another messenger did follow, saying, `Fall, fall, did Babylon, the great city, because of the wine of the wrath of her whoredom she hath given to all nations to drink.'

Don't forget there is the whole host of angels that serve God as well. I guess it is hard to imagine how much this world will transformed under Christ's rule. But the main objective will be to teach the world truth and righteousness.

Isa 26:9  With my soul I desired You in the night; yea, with my spirit within me I will seek You early; for when Your judgments are in the earth, the people of the world learn righteousness.

mercy, peace and love



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Re: aionian punishment
« Reply #3 on: October 25, 2012, 12:33:09 PM »

Matthew 7:2

for in what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged, and in what measure ye measure, it shall be measured to you.

The story of Joseph and his brothers is a great example of this. When Joseph was ruling Egypt, long after his brothers had abused him and sold him into slavery, his brothers came to buy grain. Joseph accused them of being spies and threatened to imprison and even kill them:

Genesis 42: 18-22--On the third day Joseph said to them, “I am a God-fearing man. If you do as I say, you will live. If you really are honest men, choose one of your brothers to remain in prison. The rest of you may go home with grain for your starving families. But you must bring your youngest brother back to me. This will prove that you are telling the truth, and you will not die.”

Speaking among themselves, they said, “Clearly we are being punished because of what we did to Joseph long ago. We saw his anguish when he pleaded for his life, but we wouldn’t listen. That’s why we’re in this trouble.”

 “Didn’t I tell you not to sin against the boy?” Reuben asked. “But you wouldn’t listen. And now we have to answer for his blood!”

Imagine how their terror increased when they realized that this ruler of Egypt was Joseph! He comforted them, kissed them and wept with them (45:15) and they all moved down to Egypt. Everyone lives happily ever after, right? Wrong, paleface! (to borrow the proverbial colloquialism  ;D)

Jacob, the father of Joseph and his brothers, lived 17 more years after moving to Egypt (47:28). That whole time, Joseph's brothers never stopped fearing what might happen to them. For 17 years, they lived in fear. Why 17 years? Because "in what measure ye measure, it shall be measured to you." Joseph was 17 years old when they sold him into slavery. For the first 17 years of his life, his brothers were jealous of him, ridiculed him, teased him. Joseph probably was scared to be around them if Jacob wasn't present. Now it was being paid back to them.

After the 17 years in Egypt, Jacob died and Joseph's brothers became even more afraid:

And the brethren of Joseph see that their father is dead, and say, 'Peradventure Joseph doth hate us, and doth certainly return to us all the evil which we did with him.
' Genesis 50:15 (YLT)

Only after 17 years did they finally get the reassurance that Joseph had indeed forgiven them (50:21)

The same measure will apply for all who face eonian judgment. I don't know if a rapist will be raped, but maybe he will live in fear of being raped, and believe he's going to be raped. Christian preachers who condemn people to hell may live in stark terror of going to hell themselves. In the same way they judged others, they're going to be judged. I think they will believe that they will be going to hell forever, and it will terrify them. (This last paragraph is just speculation on my part; I may be wrong, but this is how I see "in what measure ye measure, it shall be measured you.")


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Re: aionian punishment
« Reply #4 on: October 26, 2012, 01:06:37 AM »

Dear Paul:
I think maybe you mean if there is no eternal torture in some fiery hell, then what is the Scriptural punishment for those who have not repented of their sin.  Is that what you  mean?  God's purpose is to judge people so that they see the error of their way and repent and turn from their sins.  What punishment did God have in store for Saul/Paul who is said to be the "chief of sinners" (I Tim. 1:15)?  God is going to bring severe judgment upon the world, but it is "judgment in RIGHTEOUSNESS" (Acts 17:31). When these judgments are in the earth the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness (Isa. 26:9).
I know of only one Scripture which promises very severe "punishment" for those who commit a certain ungodly and unspeakable sin, and that is found in (Heb. 10:29), and I know of only one person that I regrettably feel has committed this damnable sin
against our Lord and Saviour.
  I wish I knew of a way to salvage this person from the punishment described as worse that death.  Heb. 10:28-29 describes this punishment as "much sorer [Gk: worse, severer, heavier] (Ver. 29) than "dying without mercy" (Ver. 28).
Judgment is upon the House of God now (II Pet. 4:17).  And if we would judge ourselves now, we will not need to be judged later as Paul has taught in (I Cor. 11:31-32). God is not interested in punishing humanity, but in saving humanity.  I hope this helps your understanding.

God be with you,

The point is to judge ourselves now.  Actions speak louder than words.  If you sin and you repent then your actions speak to what you believe deep down.

When Peter asked Jesus how many times must he forgive his brother for sinning against him, sevenNo, seventy times seven.  I believe other gospels say 77 times.   At any rate, that's complete or perfect forgiveness that Jesus is speaking of.  Shall not the judge of the earth do right?

If your heart condemns you, God is greater than your heart.  1 John 3:20   

Again:  God is not interested in punishing humanity, but in saving humanity.

You know, I don't know about anyone else, but when there's little or no punishment for most sins, it has this really strange effect of taking all the fun out of going against God.

Dave in Tenn

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Re: aionian punishment
« Reply #5 on: October 26, 2012, 05:55:41 AM »,6636.0.html

This is the thread that Alex 'bumped' that may make a good companion for your question.

I have a fairly utilitarian view of what 'punishments' are set:  To truly change a heart, what works?  When I look around, I don't see prison working.  I don't see torture working.  I don't see beating children working.  I don't see wars really working, or politics, or religion, or philosophy.  Many punishments make things worse most of the time.  The rest of the time, they only affect behavior--maybe even only temporarily--but do so at the expense of the relationship.  I don't even see the fear of punishment working much of the time.  It never worked for me to change my heart.  I may be weird, but I'm not that unusual. 

It is worth remembering, I think, that 'good' is ALSO judged.  Is making people better (refining the good, producing the character of God in the fruit of His Spirit) punishment?  Yes, it happens under pressure and duress.  It's not all fun and games.  But you can't 'whip' or torture or maim somebody into being full of love, joy, peace, faith, etc.  These things may happen, and God always uses and intends evil for good, but it only 'works' for those who believe.  It's not enough to make somebody 'act right'.  My soul, didn't Israel prove that over and over?   

Whatever is working for you to change your heart and increase the Character and Spirit of God, I think will be what works for everybody.  Only the timing and the setting are different.  I see the next age as more work, but work done free of frailty and lusts and with the power of God.

Paul said, with a changed heart,

Rom 7:19-20  For what good I desire, I do not do. But the evil I do not desire, this I do.  But if I do what I do not desire, it is no longer I working it out, but the sin dwelling in me.

Rom 7:24,25  O wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me from the body of this death?  I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord!...

Paul isn't going to be a wretched man in the kingdom!  The good that he wanted to do, he will be able to do.  And the evil he did not want to do, he won't do.  What good did he want to do?  Among other things, he wanted to bring the ministry of reconciliation to the world and to help raise up people from babes to full maturity as they experienced their lives.  What evil did he not want to do?  He'd already had a changed heart and had stopped going around intentionally harming people.  What evil (that he did not want to do, but did) was it, then?  A few bad habits?  I used to think so, but I doubt that very much now.

We're weak in this life.  Even with our hearts changed, we can't do the good we want to do.  Maybe we don't know what it IS.  Maybe we do, but the odds and opposition are stacked too hard against us.  Maybe even the good we want to do ends up doing harm along the way.  Maybe that's the evil a converted Paul couldn't help but do.  Story of my life.  Wretched man that I am.  It ain't always gonna be this way. 

Who's going to save me from this body of death?  I thank God, through Jesus Christ, I will be saved though as by fire.  The good REFINED, the worthless REMOVED.  That's what the world is anxiously waiting for.  Each in his own turn.  One saving others, others saving still more others.  That's what Jesus did, that's what our brother Paul emulated.  There's our examples, I think.  The younger brothers will do what the Elder did and does. 

I'd be fearful to pronounce any 'punishment' on mankind or an individual in the Kingdom beyond life in the flesh.  When God's (righteous) judgements are in the earth, the whole world will learn righteousness.  What is righteousness?  How are we supposed to teach what we don't know?  What is righteous judgement?  Whatever else it is, it is RIGHT.  It will do the job required to change men's hearts and make them in the image of God, conformed to Christ.  So for me, it's back to 'What works?'           


« Last Edit: October 26, 2012, 06:36:57 AM by Dave in Tenn »
Heb 10:32  But you must continue to remember those earlier days, how after you were enlightened you endured a hard and painful struggle.


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Re: aionian punishment
« Reply #6 on: October 27, 2012, 07:10:42 PM »

I once read where L. Ray Smith mentioned that since the Jews had no concept of heaven or hell.....the Christians ended up adopting the same concept of that of the Greeks and Egyptians.....Heaven and Hell were rewards, and punishments for how you lived your life.....According to the scholars of those days.....if one had some fear of punishment maybe there would be some semblance of control to obey the laws of the land. They invented rewards for a good life, and punishments for bad life. Of course the trustee Christians could be counted on to further add to the pot of this theory! So it was not the religious who invented the idea of reward for a clean life....or punishment for bad life. This was credited to those with the ability to put fear into the people.  If the bad guys do not fear something or have any fear of punishment, then they would just do anything they wanted. So to help make them more docile, and or inspire a heart change! I remember reading something along the lines that L. Ray Smith mentioned this in a letter or email about this that made sense to me as well. Man made fear obviously does not bring about any real repentance or change in the heart. Where as the Father's plan will do and accomplish this. Though not for the wicked! The elect are the only ones that will 'get it' and Repent in this age. Where as the lake of fire will do its work to get the rest to bow the knee and confess Jesus as Lord. I bet one of you can find that email or info from one of his teachings......I honestly do not know where to begin to look.
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