Greg P, on 23 October 2010 - 01:35 AM, said:
SDG, on 22 October 2010 - 09:02 PM, said:
If you mean to imply a preponderance of evidence for annihilation over against eternal punishment, I dispute that. Furthermore, I suspect that efforts to defend this thesis will very quickly resort to placing more weight on warnings of physical death than such warnings would seem to bear.
Well, i dunno. Most of the NT language regarding the future state of the wicked is lifted straight from passages in the OT (the worm that dieth not, unquenchable fire, weeing and gnashing of teeth etc...) The context of those OT verses is very clearly total extermination and not some horror movie premise featuring supernatural bodies burning endlessly in conscious torment.
I am curious about the exegetical moves that get you from weeping and gnashing of teeth (not an OT combo so far as I know) to total extermination. I have not often noticed weeping and teeth-gnashing from exterminated people.
I suppose in theory you could have weeping and teeth-gnashing on behalf of
the exterminated, from other people -- though again I can't find teeth-gnashing used in that way in the OT; it seems always to be a reference to the defiant rage of the wicked.
At any rate, when Jesus appropriates that language, it seems clearly to be the wicked themselves -- bound and cast into outer darkness, or into the furnace of fire, or thrust outside the kingdom -- who are weeping and/or gnashing their teeth.
The imagery of destruction (furnace of fire) is balanced with images of exclusion and exile, and across both
sets of images Jesus invokes weeping and gnashing of teeth, making it difficult to see the note of destruction as dominant.
Edited by SDG, 23 October 2010 - 12:50 PM.