The smoke of their torments shall ascend for ever and ever. Whosoever was not found written in the book of life, was cast into the lake of fire—the lake burning with fire and brimstone. This is the second death. How can life forever be called a Second death? Because, answers St. Augustine, to live in everlasting suffering is rather death than life. For no death can be worse than that death which never dies.
The wicked, after the day of judgment, will not be consumed or annihilated , but will remain alive in soul and body, to endure the torments to be inflicted on them by the justice of God for all the sins committed by them in the body. Souls are immortal by their very nature, and bodies will be rendered immortal at the general resurrection.
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And as the reprobate shall never fail to endure the torments for their sins, so the justice of God will never fail to inflict those torments. They shall never live to pay the uttermost farthing; or, rather, no payment or satisfaction at all can be made there. One part of their misery is the horror of despair; and it were not perfect hell if any hope could lodge in it. The favour of God is not to be obtained when there is no means left to obtain it ; in that world to come there is no place for merit, or satisfaction, or virtue.
As the tree falls, so it lies ; no change can be wrought in man within those flames, no purgation of his sin, no sanctification of his nature, no justification of his person, and, therefore, no salvation for him forever. The Scripture speaks in the same way of the duration of the pains of the wicked and the glory of the just, and as this will be eternal, so also will the pains of the wicked be.
The same word is used alike in both cases. Thomas assigns the following reasons to show us the equity of this duration of the torments of the damned : —. The same may be said of perpetual banishment. If an exile could always live, he would always remain an exile. The pains of hell cannot be said to be infinite in intensity, because God alone is capable of an infinite action ; and no creature could endure infinite suffering. They may, however, be said to be infinite in extent or in duration, as they are to last always And the pain of loss, as well as the pain of sense, inflicted for mortal sins, will never be diminished or interrupted, although the accidental pains—such as the vexations of the demons, their reproaches, and the reproaches of others, can be subject to change and diminution.
Let us consider what must be the state of the soul as to its intellect and will in the midst of all these pains and horrors. According to St. Thomas, the soul in hell will retain all its natural knowledge. It will know whatever it knew here on earth. It will consider the evil work which it did and for which it is condemned, and all the delightful goods it has lost ; and by the thought of both it will be the more tortured.
It will also know some of the things which go on here on earth, as the demons will manifest them to it ; or as God will make them known to it at the particular judgment, or by some other special way. Thus the rich man who was buried in hell knew that his brothers here on earth were leading sinful lives. In that state the lost souls will think of God, but only as the avenger and punisher, as St.
Thomas teaches ; and from this are born their depraved will and their hatred of God. The same Saint teaches that, before the Day of Judgment those souls know that the blessed spirits are in a state of inestimable happiness. In the last judgment they will see the glorified bodies of the saints, and after the judgment they will be entirely deprived of the vision of the blessed.
They will, however, retain the memory of their glory, which will only serve to their own sorrow out of envy for the happiness of the saints; and because they have lost the state of happiness which so many others have obtained. In regard to the wills of the damned. We have first to state that the wills of the devils are entirely bad in such a way that they sin mortally by every act which proceeds from their own will ; they are obstinate in sin as they have reached their term, in which they remain as to the same state of mind and will, because in all things they act out of pride and rebellion.
As to men, it is held that every deliberate act of their wills is evil : because they also are obstinate and confirmed in evil, and they cannot desire that which is good, except through some perverse motive. Neither the one nor the other will ever repent of their sins. They will have hatred towards God because of their punishments, and this hatred will cause many of them to blaspheme Him. Finally, as the blessed no longer merit by their good works in heaven, and their essential glory is not increased by them; so neither do the damned demerit by their sins, or deserve an increase of their punishments.
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The reason is because both the blessed and the lost are beyond the state of merit or demerit; they have reached the term of their reward or punishment, and they are no longer capable of meriting or dementing. But the very will of the damned, and the sing committed through it, are a pain and a punishment to them; as the goodwill of the blessed serves to their reward and happiness. All the reasons assigned by infidels against an eternity of punishment are of no value, and they are not new, but as old as unbelief itself.
To this we answer that the number of those sins of a lost soul is only an accessory thing. God pardons seventy times seven times; that is, an indefinite number of times, anyone who truly repents. If, then, anyone be condemned to hell for only one mortal sin, it is because such a one died freely in a state of final impenitence, with the knowledge and acceptance of all its consequences.
He has laughed at the justice of God; he has condemned His mercy. It is the sinner who has condemned himself, who has been his own executioner. If an obstinate sinner should live eternally here on earth, he would always remain in evil, and be always deserving the same punishment. His sin, in his intention and will, is eternal; and it is therefore just that the penalty last forever. There would be no eternal hell were it not that God is infinitely good, and that He loves His creatures in an infinite manner.
It is this love, contemned and trampled underfoot to the last hour, which calls forth, on the part of God, the definite and final abandonment of the soul. God would pardon the lost soul if it would repent. The damned will never repent, and they will never repent because in that state they are incapable of repentance. Their will was fixed in evil at death; therein it will remain forever, as it is no longer free to turn to good. That is to say that God should give the damned a new trial, or a new period of probation. But on this supposition, either the damned will accept the grace of God, or they will refuse to accept it.
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If they accept it they will be saved, and their portion and happiness will be the same as those just souls who faithfully observed the law of God in this life ; and from this it would follow that a man could live here on earth any kind of life — he could hate both God and man, and commit all manner of iniquity, and die with blasphemy on his lips, and depend on grace and repentance in the next life. Lara Adrian. Sweet Ruin. Kresley Cole. Immortal Nights. Under a Vampire Moon. Laurell K. Magic Stars. Ilona Andrews. Resurrected Book 9 in the Vampire Journals.
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The War of Blood and Bones: Orcs. Enforcer: The Collection. Assassin Spy Action Thriller Series 4. Gaza was one of the most prominent cities in the kingdom of the Ph. It may even have been her capital. Tell the towers thereof. Mark ye well her bulwarks. Consider he palaces.
Gaza undoubtedly boasted about her defenses. Her city was impregnable. What a laughing stock Gaza was when word spread that there was a gaping wide hole in the wall where once her gates had been. Gaza was defenseless. The gates of a city were also the place of business and concourse. The elders met in the gates to make political decisions; and the businessmen met in the gates to strike business deals c. Ruth ; Psalm ; Prov. Therefore for Samson to remove the gates was a blow to the security, the commerce and the politics of the city.
It would be like enemy coming into a major city and singlehandedly destroying parliament, business sector and security service at the same time. Last time we saw that Samson by burning the Ph fields devastated their economy. Now in one night he brings one of the prominent cities to its knees. It was all the more humiliating for the Philistines because Samson turned the tables on them and overturned the plot they had made to capture and kill him.
When Samson entered Gaza the Ph saw their chance. They closed the gates and surrounded Samson planning to kill him in the morning. All the men of Gaza had to do, they thought, was wait until morning and when it was light they would kill him. To that end they laid wait for him in the gate.
It is strange, however, that they did not kill him while he slept; probably they fell asleep in the guard rooms of the towers of the gate.
Certainly, nobody expected Samson to rise at midnight, but Samson was the kind of man who did what he pleased. And the woman seems to have failed to give warning to the men of Gaza. If the men of Gaza really did plan to kill him and it was not some empty boast remember he had killed 1, men with the jawbone of an ass. Did they really want to risk a violent confrontation with Samson? It must have been a rude awakening to find gate in which they had been hiding being lifted off the ground and hoisted on to the shoulders of Samson.
Certainly, none attempted to resist Samson in anything. They were powerless.
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Samson is a type of Christ in his work as judge. As a type he is a dim reflection of Christ and His work, but what does this extraordinary event tell us about Christ? And remember that Christ is the Seed of Abraham. Just after Abraham passed the trial of his faith in sacrificing Isaac God made the promise recorded in Gen. Samson, a descendant of Samson, possessed and spoiled the gates of his enemies. Jesus Christ did so in a greater way than Samson did.
Samson was unafraid to enter the citadel of the enemy and the gates of Gaza could not prevail against him. There is a gaping hole in his defenses. And now, we who were in the kingdom of darkness, whose gates Christ has smashed down, are free to live in the kingdom of God where we and our children are safe. The weight of such a burden would crush a man not endowed with supernatural strength but Samson was empowered by the Spirit of Jehovah, the same Spirit who brought the world into being, and the same Spirit who brings dead sinners to life. Therefore, we are not at all worried by unbelieving critics of Scripture who call this Jewish folklore or legend.
Nothing shall be impossible with God! But we are much more impressed by the greater weight which the greater Samson bore for us. Samson carried several tonnes a maximum of about 60 miles. Jesus Christ carried a wooden cross through the city of Jerusalem and up the hill of Calvary, but the wood of the cross was not the crushing burden. The burden Christ bore was the crushing, well nigh overwhelming burden of sin and guilt.
And in carrying that burden Christ did not deposit our sins on a hill before Hebron. He removed our guilt completely. It is gone, forever removed from our account and God will never hold it against us. In the midst of victory there is shameful defeat. Samson sleeps with a prostitute! Before he had married a Ph woman which was a terrible sin because he married an unbeliever but here he is sleeping with a woman he meets on the streets of Gaza.
And she is a harlot! A prostitute or a harlot is a woman who sleeps with men for money, who sells her body to men for sex in exchange for financial reward. This is a gross violation of the 7 th Comm. It may have been that Samson was not looking for a harlot but he lingered too long and was ensnared by her charms. Since Gaza was some 80km from home it is unlikely Samson went that far to look for a prostitute but he should not have been lingering in the city of the enemy near dark.
What was he doing there anyway? Samson saw the harlot and he did not turn his eye away from her; he did not shut his ears to her seductive, flattering words; he did not flee from her house.