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Pharisees believed in ECT?
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TOPIC: Pharisees believed in ECT?

Re: Pharisees believed in ECT? 1 year, 11 months ago #4002

  • Timothew
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MacGregor, you seem to really want to find some evidence for ECT.

Good luck with that.
Τιμοθέῳ γνησίῳ τέκνῳ ἐν πίστει
Tim Wiesner

Re: Pharisees believed in ECT? 1 year, 11 months ago #4003

  • Mcgragor
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Quite the opposite Timothew, just forcing myself to really try to examine all the evidence. The thought of a never ending torment in hell is overwhelming to me, but I am not in the place of God nor can I understand His ways.

I know regardless of what hell is, He gave Himself for me and for that you can find no greater love as I assume everyone else on here would agree. We don't question His mercy, which is extreme, its the justice or wrath on those that are not His we are questioning and my limited understanding does not make or break a doctrine.

With that being said, I certainly see the evidence for CI. I'd like it to be true, but my feelings are secondary to what the scriptures teach and unlike you, I still see a lot of evidence for ECT.

Re: Pharisees believed in ECT? 1 year, 11 months ago #4011

  • webb
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McGragor said,
To me, if the Jews during the time of Christ believed in ECT its a very strong argument to take what Jesus said and assume that's the way they would have understood it. Otherwise, would they have not challenged Him?

It's true that the Pharisees mostly believed in ECT. It's also true, I'd say, that Jesus didn't go out of his way to refute the idea of ECT. For the most part he just carries on the tradition of the Hebrew Bible, esp. Isa. 27:1-5 and 66:22-24, which picture the end of those who are hostile to God and God's beloved as fiery extinction. If the Pharisees over-interpreted Jesus' words just as they over-interpreted Isaiah's, I can't see that as evidence for anything.

Jesus does take up the image (which arose in the intertestamental period) of Sheol/Hades being a place of fire and misery. But that is imagery about the condition between death and resurrection. Jesus adds his own imagery on this score, talking about being imprisoned in debtors' prison for a long, long time. But none of this (whether taken more literally or less literally) is germane to the question of ECT. Whatever your state between death and resurrection, the key question there is, what happens when you are raised for final judgment and are condemned? Jesus says not a word about that. In one single place speaks of "a resurrection of judgment," and that is it.

The question I would pose to you is a theological one.

Imagine a God whose pleasure and glory it is to give billions of human beings a small (indeed, within the overall scheme of their existence, infinitesimal) portion of the gifts of life and agency, before subjecting them to a never-ending, infinitely extended regime of exquisite agony.

Imagine a God whose pleasure and glory it is to give billions of human beings a small portion of the gifts of life and agency, and, if they insist on misusing these gifts to their own harm and the harm of their fellow created beings, taking them away.

I would suggest that if you are in doubt as to which of these two Gods is the real one and which has been made up by human beings, you have a problem of faith, not a problem of doctrine.

Re: Pharisees believed in ECT? 1 year, 11 months ago #4013

  • Mcgragor
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Webb,

I think you ignore a key rule in hermeneutics by downplaying what the Pharisees believed as irrelevant, but I do appreciate that you have looked into this and agree that ECT is not a new concept.

Concerning the nature of God issues, this can be argued from an opposite perspective with implications we see going on around us now. Everyone in their sinful nature thinks God is unfair, but its by faith we accept the revelation He has given us.

Think about it. The LGBT community believe a loving God would never condemn them for what is natural in their nature. They would say their inclusiveness actually makes them more loving than the Christian God.

So when we give nature of God arguments, we need to consider that someone is always going to be on the other side of that argument, until we have a God that will allow anything and still love everyone right into glory.

ECT is horrible to think about. It is in fact overwhelming to me, but how I feel about it doesn't make it true or untrue. I am actually perplexed by the staunch ECT supporters that seem to just pass it off. For whatever reason this is weighing heavy on me, so I appreciate the discussions here and I plan on continuing to study this out.

Re: Pharisees believed in ECT? 1 year, 11 months ago #4014

  • webb
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Macgragor,
Everyone in their sinful nature thinks God is unfair

I'm not asking you to exercise your conscience in your sinful nature. I'm asking you to exercise your conscience in your highest, most loving and just nature, formed in you as a reborn child of God. Does the renewed-in-Christ person that you are think your Father God is like the first or the second characterization? If you're not confident, I'm asserting that there is a matter of faith to be dealt with, and that no amount of intellectualizing is going to take the place of that exercise of faith. At some point a person has to ask themselves, do I believe in a God who brings billions of human beings into existence with the express purpose of subjecting them to literally unending torment, or not? It's possible that the Bible is not going to close the door so firmly on this question that no exercise of faith is ever going to be required.

Re: Pharisees believed in ECT? 1 year, 11 months ago #4015

  • Timothew
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Mcgragor wrote:
Quite the opposite Timothew, just forcing myself to really try to examine all the evidence. The thought of a never ending torment in hell is overwhelming to me, but I am not in the place of God nor can I understand His ways.


You said
Man how I wish such a verse or two were there...


You are not examining the evidence to find the truth. You are searching for evidence that favors your POV, and when it isn't there you say that you wish it were there. God's ways are not "never ending torment in hell." Perhaps the reason you can't understand His ways is because you are making assumptions about Him that are not true.

I used to hold the same view you hold and because I examined the Scriptures, I rejected that view in favor of the view of Scripture. Scripture (Psalm 92:6-7, as one of many examples) has STRONG language specifically stating that the wicked will be destroyed forever:
Senseless people do not know,
fools do not understand,
that though the wicked spring up like grass
and all evildoers flourish,
they will be destroyed forever.

Why reject the plain language of Scripture because of what the Pharisee might or might not have believed? If they believed in ECT it is because they were wrong, as they were wrong about a lot of things. It doesn't matter what they believed, it matters what the Bible says, and the Bible says that the wicked will be destroyed.
Τιμοθέῳ γνησίῳ τέκνῳ ἐν πίστει
Tim Wiesner
Last Edit: 1 year, 11 months ago by Timothew.
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