Retribution, Future

Retribution, Future.

That man is a responsible being, and that his responsibility extends into his future state of existence, is generally admitted throughout the world. The denial of all punishment in a future state, rests chiefly upon the two unscriptural and contradictory dogmas — the immaculate spirituality and the mortal materialism of the human soul. The position believed to be taught in the Scriptures is this, that all sinners who do not repent and take refuge in the Saviour in the present life shall in the future state suffer everlasting punishment, as the necessary and just retribution of their sins. This doctrine, however awful it must be acknowledged by all to be, appears to be taught in the Scriptures, and has been held by very large portions of the Church in all ages. We shall not, however, depend upon this fact as a proof, though it affords what logicians call a violent presumption, that it was an original part of Christ ianity We present the following as Scripture proof, and urge,

1. Those passages which declare that certain sinners shall not enter the kingdom of heaven (Mt 5:20; Mt 7:13,21-23; Mt 18:3; Mr 10:23-27; Lu 13:24,26; Joh 3:3-5; 1Co 6:9-10; Galations 5:19-21; Eph 5:5; Heb 3:19; Heb 4:1,13). If some men, according to the language of these Scriptures, are to be excludec from heaven, they must necessarily sink to hell; fo the Scriptures give us no intimation of a middl state.

2. Those passages of Scripture which describe the future and final state of men in contrast (Ps 17:14-15; Pr 10:28; Pr 14:35; Da 12:2; Mt 3:12; Mt 7:13; Mt 14; Mt 21; Mt 8:11-12; Mt 13:30-43,47-50; Mt 24:46-51; Mt 25:23-46; Mr 16:16; Lu 6:23-24,47-49; Joh 3:16; Joh 5:29; Ro 6:21-23; Ro 9:21-23; Galations 6:7, 8 Php 3:17-21;

2Th 1:5-12; 2Ti 2:19-20; Heb 8:9; 1Pe 4:18). These passages are believed to refer to the final state of man because —

(1) in several of them the state is expressly called their end.

(2) The state of the righteous and that of the wicked are put in exact opposition to each other; and if one is not final, neither is the other.

(3) There is a dead silence about any succeeding state; and

(4) the phraseology of some of the passages will admit of no other interpretation.

3. Those passages of Scripture which apply the termi "everlasting" "eternal," "forever," and "for ever and ever" to this future state (Da 12:2; Mt 18:8; Mt 25:41-46; Mr 3:29; 2Co 4:18; 2Th 1:9; 2Pe 2:17; Jude 1:6-7,13; Re 14:10-13; Re 19:3; Re 20:10).

4. Those passages which express future punishment by phrases which imply its everlasting duration (Mt 10:28; Mt 12:31-32; Mr 3:35; Mr 9:43-48; Lu 9:25; Lu 14:26; Joh 3:36; Joh 8:21; Joh 17:9; Php 3:10; Heb 6:2; Heb 10:26-27; Jas 2:13; 1Jo 5:16).

5. Those passages which intimate that a change of heart and a preparation for heaven are confined to this life (Pr 1:24-28; Isa 55:6-7; Mt 25:5-13; Lu 13:24-29; Joh 12:36; 2Co 6:1-2; Heb 3:1-10; Heb 13:15-22; Re 22:11). 6. Those passages which foretell the consequences of rejecting the Gospel (Ps 2:12; Pr 29:1; Ac 13:40-46; Ac 20:26; Ac 28:26-27; Ro 10:12; 1Co 1:18; 2Co 2:15-16; 2Co 4:3; 1Th 5:3; 2Th 1:8; 2Th 2:10-12; Hebrews 2:1-3; 4:1-11; 10:26-31, 38, 39; 22:25-29; Jas 2:14; 1Pe 4:17-18; 2Pe 2:1-21; 2Pe 3:7). The Gospel being the only way of salvation for man (Ac 4:12), its rejection is tliat of the only method of salvation. SEE PUNISHMENT, EVER LASTING; SEE UNIVERSALISM.

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