The Lake of Fire a metaphor?

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by evangelist6589, May 24, 2012.

  1. evangelist6589

    evangelist6589
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    Was listening to Hanegraaf last night and he said the Lake of Fire is a metaphor. I do not know where he got this view, but purely I think he is wrong. As much as I wish he was correct, I do not believe that he is. So what are your views on this one?

    John
     
  2. convicted1

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    Well, if the LoF is a metaphor, you're going to have a metaphor being cast into another metaphor in Rev. 20(hell being cast into the LoF). I am with you in wishing he was right, but he is plainly wrong, imo.
     
  3. freeatlast

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    There is simply no reason biblically to hold that the lake of fire is symbolic. Even in the story about Lazarus and the rich man the person was needing water to quench his thirst from the heat and flame. I would suggest that if the description of hell (the lake of fire) is not literal as given then we can forget about heaven being literal as given.
    However for the sake of argument if it is symbolic then it is pointing to something just as horrible as being burned 24/7 for ever and ever and the suffering that goes along with it. Whether it is literal tormenting flames or something equal is not the main issue. The issue is it is eternal without end and the suffering is equal to being burned forever in a body, not just in spirit and those their are suffering terribly because they refused to repent and believe.
    The sad thing here is today more and more people who claim to be Christians are rejecting the word of God trying to make it into fables. The lake of fire says it burns with fire so I hold it burns with fire. Because people form an incorrect picture of God in their minds as One who would never bring such suffering on anyone they reject what is written. This leads into annihilation instead of eternal torment and on and on. It is sad that Hank is taking this unbiblical position to discredit the word of God rather then simply allowing it to mean what it says.
     
  4. ktn4eg

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    While Hank H is right on a lot of things, I just can't buy into his views on a lot of his views, especially his views on a lot of things concerning future events. (Just my own personal opinion, of course.)
     
  5. HankD

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    Every verse in the Book of Revelation has to be interpreted in context.
    I don't believe anyone takes every single passage in the Book of Revelation as literal.

    BUT, even if the Lake of Fire is symbolic, what then (as FAL points out) is it in reality?

    We might assume that it is lesser than the literal but if it is indeed symbolic there is the possibility that its reality could be worse than the literal.

    HankD
     
  6. evangelist6589

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    He is in several areas. He was preaching his old earth views, and what amazes me how the word day can have a different def in Genesis as it does in Jonah. Or was Jonah in the whale for 3 thousand years?
     
  7. evangelist6589

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    His eschatology is off. His old earth views are off. His view of the book of Job is off, and his view of the role of women in the ministry is off.

    If someone can find me some Bible Answer-man broadcasts with Walter Martin (sermon audio had none) I would appreciate it. The audio tape was the norm in his days.
     
  8. evangelist6589

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    What amazes me is that he thinks he is so bright when his answers are so elementary when compared to that of Ken Ham, John MacArthur, and Morris.
     
  9. ktn4eg

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    Right on the mark, my friend!!! :thumbs:
     
  10. webdog

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    I think the phrase itself is a type of metaphor, but that doesn't mean there is not a place as described by the phrase. Lakes are naturally made of water, hence the phrase is figurative.
     
  11. webdog

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    What does that have to do with anything? Does one have to have a Phd. to understand and explain truth?
     
  12. convicted1

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    Some on here think you do....:rolleyes:
     
  13. percho

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    Only with God.
     
  14. Alcott

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    A limited number of people in the ancient world actually saw fire flowing-- volcanic lava. It has been my conclusion that this is an origin of the "lake of fire" concept. What seems to clinch it is that sulphur and its compounds are a huge component of an eruption or any activity in which the hot, molten earth far below makes itself evident on the surface. Besides volcanic eruptions, there are geysers and fumerols of superheated water, for example. And in all these the smell of sulphur is evident, in some cases maybe overcoming. And the fire and brimstone [=sulphur] idea is not exclusive to the Bible. The observations that led to the correct conclusion that there is enormous heat and hot sulphur 'down there' was inevitably (IMO) something ancient mythologies would take up into their folklore.

    While I can't say for sure if the Lake of Fire in Revelation is literal or not, it does happen that there are vast chambers of magma below the earth's surface. And I think this is what was in the minds of biblcial writers and their contemporary readers. Especially the time Revelation was written, Christianity was becoming more centered on the southern Eurasian regions, which are seismically active. Again, relatively few people had seen flowing sulphur and fire, but the stories and the effects were there.
     
  15. JonC

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    I suppose I think of it as a metaphor – a metaphor representing an existence infinitely worse than a "lake of fire" as we may comprehend the term. But I see no reason not to believe in a literal hell (I just think we can’t fully comprehend that existence). I likewise believe that our knowledge of heaven probably doesn’t measure up to its reality.
     
  16. webdog

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    Thanks for that, very interesting...I'll have to rethink my position and chew on this some more.
     
  17. Tom Butler

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    Here ya go:

    http://www.waltermartin.com

    Walter Martin went to be with the Lord in 1989, but his students still maintain a website. You might find what you're looking for there.
     
  18. jonathan.borland

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    Of course it's a metaphor for the worst imaginable punishment. Fire is light but it will be dark; a lake is water but fire and water don't go together without one extinguishing the other; fire burns things to ashes but will not do so to those in hell who will suffer forever without ever being burned up. Metaphor doesn't mean fantasy. It's using language we're familiar with to describe an awful place of eternal suffering and separation that no one alive has ever experienced. It is by definition metaphorical.
     
  19. Alive in Christ

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    Thats when when you went wrong.
     

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