Were You Created to Be Tortured Forever?

Discuss either theological doctrines, ideas about God, or Biblical criticism. I don't want any debates about creation vs evolution.

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unred typo
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Re: Were You Created to Be Tortured Forever?

Post by unred typo » Thu Apr 03, 2008 1:39 am

To answer Unred Typo's question-- I think the whole issue of God's foreknowledge and our free will is also beyond our understanding. But one thing I am sure of is that Judas and Pharoah and so on chose their actions-- God didn't force them into anything, or predestine them for something they had no say over. The Scriptures translated "God hardened Pharoah's heart" would be more accurately translated "God strengthened Pharoah's heart"-- enabling him not to weaken in the path he had already chosen and desired, so that God's purposes would be fulfilled. And His purposes, ultimately, were redemptive: to display His power so that both Israel and other nations would know that He was God, rather than their idols.
I may be over simplifying it, but it seems to me that if the future was non-existent as a ‘place’ or ‘thing’, but is only a figure of speech to describe a time or event that hasn’t come into being yet, then God’s foreknowledge and predestination could be understood in a different light which is more compatible with our logic and experience, and not really diminishing the powers and attributes of God.

As for your evaluation of the hardening of Pharaoh’s heart, etc., I concur completely. *thumbs-up smiley*
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KR Wordgazer
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Re: Were You Created to Be Tortured Forever?

Post by KR Wordgazer » Thu Apr 03, 2008 2:48 pm

Well, the future may be non existant as a "place" or "thing." I'm not sure. I kind of like Metacrock's metaphor of space-time being like a gradually expanding ball, and God as existing in the room where that ball is, but being both within and outside it (I think that's how he described it), but the Bible does talk a lot about God's foreknowledge. So I'm not certain if we humans are really accurately grasping the way time works, even with the advent of quantum physics. I feel sure God takes certain actions in the world, or allows certain events to come to pass, in order to accomplish His purposes. I know also that God has been shown to "change His mind" about what He's going to do in response to human repentance or prayer. But I also feel sure that much of the time He simply lets we humans and other creatures/natural processes unfold as they will. "No sparrow falls to the ground apart from the Father," I think means that God is with the sparrow when it falls, knows and cares about its falling-- but not that God specifically planned for or caused that particular sparrow to fall at that particular moment. I think He gives His creation more leeway than that.

How that all works together-- God's plans, God's foreknowledge, and God's creatures' free actions-- I'm not sure. But I do feel certain that God does not specifically create a specific person to do evil and to be sent to Hell.

Who knows? One of the reasons He may have waited 400 years to rescue the Hebrews from Egypt is that before then there had not been a Pharoah like that one, who would willingly choose to be that stubborn against Him. And I imagine that if Judas had chosen not to betray Christ, there would have been someone else.

But there is still that the prophecy that it was going to be one of His closest friends.

So I can only conclude that time must be a complex thing that we don't fully grasp the workings of-- and that God does.

CS Lewis, in "A Grief Observed," said something along these lines (I paraphrase, as I don't have the book with me):

Is it possible to ask a question that God can't answer? Certainly. "Is yellow square, or round?" "How many miles are there in a smell?" I fancy that most of our toughest questions (like free will and predestination) will end up being like this. We aren't asking the questions right. When we do, we will see that there never was any problem.
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Diaconeo
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Re: Were You Created to Be Tortured Forever?

Post by Diaconeo » Mon Feb 15, 2010 11:22 am

unred typo wrote:Now that we have a pretty good understanding of what hell is, maybe since I started this thread I should attempt to get my question answered. Does anyone here believe that God created Judas or Pharaoh or Esau specifically knowing they would end up in hell? Or is everyone who gives a flip actually in agreement that he didn’t know they would be the ones who would do such dastardly deeds from their conception, or as some believe, from the beginning of creation? :?
The simple answer to this is, No. In Matthew 25:41 (the sheep and the goats) Jesus makes if very clear that this place was "created for the Devil and his angels." There is nothing or noone in this place right now. We are told in Rev. 20 that the first two to go into this eternal fire are the Beast and False Prophet, followed 1000 years later by Satan (the Devil). The next thing to go into the Lake of Fire (LoF) is death (thanatos) and Hades. We can consider these things concepts or places or states of being, it doesn't matter to me for this debate, only that they are cast into the LoF. Now, we come to the hard part for many people, those people, the dead wicked humans that are cast into the LoF. These are those whose names are not found written in the Lamb's book of Life.

The Question, Were you created to be tortured forever?" is fundamentally flawed. No one or thing was created to go there, rather it was created as a place to put the wicked, namely the Devil and those angel' that followed him. Was this place created at the beginning of creation or later after the fall of all those rebellious angels? I can't say, but I can say that God foresaw the fall of Satan and those that followed him, so it may be that it was part of the original creation as part of the 'the heavens.' I won't say that with any kind of conviction, only that it is possible. Perhaps it was created after Satan's rebellion, I don't know. The one thing I do know, is that God created it as a place of punishment for the Devil and his angels, and that humans will have their part in it.

God originally Created Adam and Eve to live with Him forever and have fellowship with Him. This was God's plan from the start, however, and so neither of them were created for the LoF. No human afterward was 'created' in the sense of God creating them from nothing, but rather are a result of reproduction. I won't argue the fact that God's hand is involved in the recreation of this new life, but in the strictest of terms, we are not created, but are a part of the natural reproductive order that God set up from His first two created humans. It was a special gift that He gave man, and not angels. But for argument's sake, I'll accept the idea of creation to include man from after Adam. So did God create anyone to be tortured forever? The answer to that is a resounding NO.

The problem that this Questions does not deal with is imputed sin and righteousness. I include both, because you can't deal with one with out touching on the other. The real question is, Where you created/born with an imputed sin nature? The answer to this is a resounding YES. Paul deal with this in Romans 5. Everyone since Adam is born with Adam's sin. Because Adam sin, we have inherited his sinful nature. We are not sinful because we sin, rather we sin because we are sinful, born with an imputed sin nature. Because we are sinful, God will deal with us on that level, casting us away from Him. The answer to the problem of out imputed wickedness is imputed righteousness. Man cannot be righteous of his own doing, it's simply impossible. This does not preclude the act of doing 'good' things, but they are not in anyway going to make us righteous in God's eyes. Rather, it is solely by Christ's imputed righteousness that we are allow entrance into Eternal Life. On the other side of that coin is eternal death, separation from God for all eternity after death. Because of this imputed sin nature or wicked state, we all are headed to the same place, the Lake of Fire, and that is a fast pass, one way ticket. The only way to get off this train is to have Christ's righteousness imputed to us, and this is a topic for an entirely new post.

Most who ask the question, Are we created for eternal torment, believe in the doctrine of Free Will and do not accept the doctrine of Election. The real questions is this, Is God just in saving some from eternal death and torment? It is in discussing this question that people then are lead to, Were you created to be tortured forever.

Man was not and is not created to be tortured forever. Man will share in the Lake of Fire that was created as a place of eternal punishment for the Devil and his angels. Will they be there for eternity? Yes, it is an eternal torment. The kind of torment can be debated in another topic. But isn't being separated from God for all Eternity torment enough? I believe so.
"Those who go down to the Sea in Ships,
Who do business on Great Waters;
They have seen the Works of the Lord,
And His Wonders in the Deep." Ps. 107:23,24

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sgttomas
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Re: Were You Created to Be Tortured Forever?

Post by sgttomas » Wed Feb 17, 2010 1:30 am

Diaconeo,

I enjoyed reading the post. Looking forward to the rest of the post, relating imputed righteousness and the punishment in the Lake. I don't view the bible the same as you, so I....just want to avoid a lot of different debates about this-n-that because I am curious about how you deal with righteousness and punishment - as concepts in and of themselves. It's a fresh perspective.

Peace,
-sgttomas
Prophet Muhammad (God send peace and blessings upon him) is reported to have said, "God says 'I am as My servant thinks I am' " ~ Sahih Al-Bukhari, Vol 9 #502 (Chapter 93, "Oneness of God")

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