Continued  from   #17

The Second Resurrection

Scripture is clear that those who will participate in the great white throne judgment—that is, the wicked dead-—-will be resurrected to judgment. Jesus Himself affirmed that "a time is coming when all who are in their graves will hear his voice and come out—those who have done good will rise to live, and those who have done evil will rise to be condemned" John 5:28-29 NIV).


To clarify, Jesus is not teaching that there is just one general resurrection that will take place at the end of time. Contrary to this idea, the Scriptures refer to two resurrections (Revelation 20:5-6,11-15). The first resurrection is the resurrection of the saved, and the second resurrection is the resurrection of the wicked (unsaved).


We can be even more specific. The term first resurrection refers to all the resurrections of the righteous, even though they are widely separated in time. One resurrection of the righteous occurs at the rapture, before the tribulation period (1 Thessalonians 4:16); another at the end of the tribulation period (Revelation 20:4); and still another at the end of the 1000-year millennial kingdom. They all are "first" in the sense of being before the second (final) resurrection of the wicked. Accordingly, the term first resurrection applies to all the resurrections of the saints regardless of when they occur, including the resurrection of Christ Himself.

(HERE  WE  GO  AGAIN  WITH  THE  "SECRET"  RAPTURE  STUFF;  A  "RESURRECTION"  THEY  MUST  PUT  IN;  ALSO  A  RESURRECTION  WHEN  CHRIST  COMES  "VISIBLY"..... I  MEAN  BELIEVING ALL  THESE  THINGS  OF  THE  PROTESTANT  PROPHETS,  YOU'D  HAVE  TO  HAVE  A  NUMBER  OF  RESURRECTIONS.  WHEREAS  ONE  COMING  OF  CHRIST  -  VISIBLE  -  GLORIOUS  COMING  WITH  NO  FANCY  "TWO  PHASED  COMING"  AND  YOU  HAVE  ONLY  ONE  GENERAL  RESURRECTION  OF SAINTS,  from  the  time  of  Adam  to  the  glorious  return  of  the  Messiah.  And  yes  you  have  this  White Throne  Judgment  -  notice  the  word  "judge"  used  twice  in  this  passage  -  Keith Hunt)

  This is a wondrous resurrection, for God's people will now have bodies in which the perishable has become imperishable, and the mortal has become immortal. These bodies will be specially designed to enable us to live directly in the presence of God for all eternity, never getting sick and never dying.

(TRUE....I  AGREE  -  Keith Hunt)

The second resurrection, by contrast, is an awful spectacle. All the unsaved of all time will be resurrected at the end of Christ's millennial kingdom and be judged at the great white throne judgment (Revelation 20:11-15).

The bodies of the unsaved will also be imperishable and immortal. Their bodies will be eternal bodies, and though they will suffer the fires of hell, they will not burn up, but will last for all eternity in an environment of suffering. How horrific are the eternal consequences for choosing against Christ.


The Wicked. Dead Are Judged

Unlike believers, whose judgment deals only with rewards and loss of rewards, unbelievers face a horrific judgment that leads to their being cast into the lake of fire. As we have seen, this is the great white throne judgment (Revelation 20:11-15). Christ Himself will judge the unsaved dead of all time. This judgment takes place after the millennial kingdom, Christ's 1000-year reign on the earth.


We know that this judgment takes place after the millennial kingdom, for Revelation 20, after describing the millennium, states: " Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it" (verse 11). In other words, the millennium first takes place, and the judgment follows.

Those who face Christ at this judgment will be judged on the basis of their works (verses 12-13). It is critical to understand that they actually appear at this judgment because they are already unsaved. This judgment will not separate believers from unbelievers, for all who will experience it will have already made the choice during their lifetimes to reject God. Once they are before the divine Judge, they are judged according to their works not only to justify their condemnation but also to determine the degree to which each person should be punished throughout eternity.


When Christ opens the book of life, no name of anyone present at the great white throne judgment is in it. Their names do not appear in the book of life because they have rejected the source of life—Jesus Christ. Because they rejected the source of life, they are cast into the lake of fire, which constitutes the second death (verse 14) and involves eternal separation from God.


All those who are judged at the great white throne judgment have a horrible destiny ahead that includes weeping and gnashing of teeth (Matthew 13:41-42), condemnation (Matthew 12:36-37), destruction (Philippians 1:28), eternal punishment (Matthew 25:46), separation from Gods presence (2 Thessalonians 1:8-9), and trouble and distress (Romans 2:9).

Nevertheless, the Scriptures also indicate that there will be degrees of punishment in hell (Matthew 10:15; 16:27; Luke 12:47-48; Revelation 20:12-13; 22:12). These degrees of punishment will be determined at the great white throne judgment when Christ examines each person with His penetrating eyes.


Common observation shows that unsaved people vary as much in their quality of life as saved people do. For example, some saved people are spiritual and charitable, and other saved people are carnal and unloving. Some unbelievers are terribly evil (like Hider), while others— such as unbelieving moralists—are much less evil.

Just as believers have varied responses to Gods law and will have corresponding rewards in heaven, so unbelievers have various responses to God's law and therefore will have corresponding experiences in their punishment in hell. Just as there are degrees of reward in heaven, so there are degrees of punishment in hell. The great white throne judgment will apportion perfectly fair judgments against the wicked dead.



The Lake of Fire

The lake of fire will be the eternal abode of Satan, demons, the antichrist, the false prophet, and unbelievers throughout all history (Revelation 19:20; 20:10-15). It will be populated by unsaved human beings following the great white throne judgment. All residents will be tormented day and night forever and ever. It is eternal.


The lake of fire is another term for hell. The Scriptures assure us that hell is a real place. But hell was not part of God's original creation, which He called good (Genesis 1). Hell was created later to accommodate the banishment of Satan and his fallen angels who rebelled against God (Matthew 25:4l). Human beings who reject Christ will join Satan and his fallen angels in this infernal place of suffering.


Scripture describes the destiny of the wicked as a fiery furnace. Jesus said that in this fiery furnace would be weeping and gnashing of teeth (Matthew 13:42). This weeping will be caused by the environment, the company, the remorse and guilt, and the shame that afflicts all who are in hell.

Scripture uses a number of other terms to describe the horrors of hell, including unquenchable fire (Mark 9:47-48), the fiery lake of burning sulfur (Revelation 19:20), eternal fire (Matthew 18:8), eternal punishment (Matthew 25:46), destruction (Matthew 7:13), everlasting destruction (2 Thessalonians 1:8-9), the place of weeping and gnashing of teeth (Matthew 13:42), and the second death (Revelation 20:14). The horror of hell is inconceivable to the human mind.



What precisely is the fire of hell (or lake of fire)? Some believe it is literal. Indeed, that may very well be the case. Others believe fire is a metaphor for the great wrath of God. Scripture commonly uses this image.

• "The Lord your God is a consuming fire, a jealous God" (Deuteronomy 4:24).

"God is a consuming fire" (Hebrews 12:29).

"His wrath is poured out like fire" (Nahum 1:6).

"Who can stand when he appears? For he will be like a

refiners fire" (Malachi 3:2).

• God said, "My wrath will flare up and burn like fire
because of the evil you have done—burn with no one to
quench it" (Jeremiah 4:4 NIV).

How awful is the fiery wrath of God!

The best English translations of the Old Testament don't include the word hell. Instead, they transliterate the Hebrew word Sheol. Sheol can have different meanings in different contexts. Sometimes the word means "grave." Other times it refers to the place of departed people in contrast to the state of living people. The Old Testament portrays Sheol as a place of horror (Psalm 55:15) and punishment (Job 24:19; Psalm 9:17).

'When we get to the New Testament, we find that a number of words relate to the doctrine of hell. Hades seems to be the New Testament counterpart to Sheol. The rich man endured great suffering in Hades (Luke 16:23).

However, this was an intermediate state and not the rich man's eternal destiny. Hades is a temporary abode and will one day be cast into the lake of fire. In the future, the wicked in Hades will be raised from the dead and judged at the great white throne judgment. They will then be cast into the lake of fire, which will be their permanent place of suffering throughout all eternity.


Another word related to the concept of hell is Gehenna (Matthew 10:28). This word has an interesting history. For several generations, ancient Israel committed atrocities in the Valley of Ben Hinnom— including human sacrifices, and even the sacrifice of children (2 Kings 23:10; 2 Chronicles 28:3; 33:6; Jeremiah 32:35). The unfortunate victims were sacrificed to the false Moabite god Molech. Jeremiah appropriately called this valley a valley of slaughter" (Jeremiah 7:31-34).

Eventually the valley came to be used as a public rubbish dump into which all the filth in Jerusalem was poured. Not only garbage but also the bodies of dead animals and the corpses of criminals were thrown on the heap, where they perpetually burned. The valley fires never stopped burning. And there was always a good meal for a hungry worm.

This place was originally called (in the Hebrew) Ge[gen]hinnom (the valley of the son[s] of Hinnom). It was eventually shortened to the name Ge-Hinnom. The Greek translation of this Hebrew phrase is Gehenna. It became an appropriate and graphic term for the reality of hell. Jesus Himself used the word 11 times in reference to the eternal place of suffering of unredeemed humanity.











Keith Hunt

To be continued