Since immortality means:
deathlessness, one cannot die and since the wicked are supposedly burning forever because they cannot die ... that is immortality!
And knowing full well, that immortality is in fact, a gift that GOD has ordained solely for the righteous ... the children of the Resurrection; it thus could not be for the wicked! Hence, the doctrine of the wicked burning whilst alive forever cannot be true! Case closed!
Since then ...
- I have learn that this doctrine has pagan sources.
- That the words translated everlasting/eternal/for ever are Greek
words which pertain to an age, eon, aeon, epoch i.e. the Age To Come
Thus eternal/everlasting life means Life in that Age [to Come], zoe aionios; and eternal fire means Fire in that Age [to Come] and everlasting punishment means Punishment in that Age [to Come]
The Scriptures split up time into Ages ... this Present Evil Age [Gal 1.4] and the Age To Come [Matt 12.32, Mark 10.30, Luke 18.30, Heb 6.5, Luke 20.35, etc]
Thus, some will receive Life in the Age To Come whilst others will receive Punishment & Destruction via Fire in the Age To Come.
The Jews call the Age To Come, Olam Haba
Always remember that the Bible is a Hebrew Book to be read with a Hebrew mindset; it is a Book full of Hebrew expressions, Hebraisms, etc; and that the NT is based on the Hebrew Bible i.e. the OT.
Although the NT is written in Greek ... it is written with a Hebrew mindset.
(One should not read later Greek/Hellenistic pagan ideas into the Scriptures)
Compare: (Dan 12:2) And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.
Thus the dead who are NOW asleep IN the dust of the earth ... will awake i.e. be resurrected ... Some, to Life in the Age To Come (Hebrew, Chayay olam, life in the Age).
Whilst others, to shame and contempt in the Age To Come i.e. Punishment.
The Hebrew word for 'everlasting' like their Greek equivalents speak of 'an age/epoch'
- Again, I learnt whilst studying the source of this erroneous doctrine, that is, that the wicked consciously burn forever; that the main reason behind this doctrine
is the so-called doctrine of the immortal soul - the immortality of the soul
Obviously then, if man indeed, had inherently a part of them that simply cannot die viz. a soul. If someone doesn't get saved; rejects the Gospel of GOD; and thus on Judgment Day is thrown in the Lake of Fire; since such a one is inherently immortal; hence such a one consciously burns forever!
Hence, the Problem!
However, I have learn that the doctrine of the immortality of the soul is not from Scripture but is from Pagan Sources!
The Bible does NOT teach that a human has a soul ... rather a Human is a Soul
Thus a human/person is mortal = a soul is mortal.
When one dies ... the whole person/soul dies! Awaiting the resurrection.
- For years like many, I believed that humans alone 'have souls' whilst animals/beasts etc don't!
Then to my shock I found out that the KJV translators subtly hid the fact that the Bible calls all living creatures, i.e. humans & animals, whether fowl, land-dwelling or marine, Living Souls!!!
(No doubt what greatly separate us is the fact that humans are made in the Image of GOD; animals/beasts are not!)
The translators hid the fact that the Hebrew word for soul, nephesh; is used to describe both humans and animals
They subtly translated living nephesh as living 'soul' when it comes to humans; and living 'creature' when it comes to animals! Thus promoting the false idea that humans alone are living souls whilst animals are not!
See for yourself ... the Hebrew word for 'soul' nephesh has already occurred four times in the Hebrew Bible before Gen 2.7 when it speaks of man!
The words below in bold are translated from the Hebrew words meaning 'living soul' (nephesh chayah):-
(Gen 1:20-21) And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven. 21 And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good.
(Gen 1:24) And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so.
(Gen 1:30) And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life ... literally in the Hebrew, wherein there is a living soul
Compare the Darby Bible's translation of this verse: Genesis 1:30 and to every animal of the earth, and to every fowl of the heavens, and to everything that creepeth on the earth, in which is a living soul, every green herb for food. And it was so.
(Gen 2:7) And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.
For other examples to confirm this usage of living soul, nephesh chayah, see Gen 2.19, 9.10,12,15,16; Lev 11.46
As one writer put it,
QUOTE: "The translators of our English versions have rendered us a disservice by concealing this fact. They were apparently so tied to the notion that the word "soul" must mean "immortal soul," the possession of man alone, that they were unwilling to reveal that "soul" is the common attribute of man and animal alike."
- Lastly, then in studying the word nephesh and its Greek equivalent, psuche; I have realized that we are a soul rather than we have a soul
[although nephesh/psuche is also used to describe your life, your personality i.e.
to lay down your life = to lay down your soul
to say that you are angry, one could say 'my soul is angry']
Thus when one dies, one's life ceases; one's personality ceases; one simply ceases to live/exist ... until they are awaken via resurrection
Thus one's entire being ... entire soul is mortal
- Souls die ... when one dies one becomes a dead soul!
Hence, a dead person is a dead soul!
Right now within tombs & coffins are dead souls. When we bury our loved ones, we are burying a dead person/soul
They sleep in the dust of the earth awaiting the resurrection. Incidentally, the word 'cemetery' comes from the Greek word,
koimeterion which means a sleeping place.
Concerning the Greek words aionios, aion; I will quote:
Nigel Turner, Christian Words, Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1980, p.456, 452
"Aionios" acquired the sense in the Christian language "belonging to the 'olam.' " The dispensation intended in this special sense was that of the future, the Kingdom of Christ, the reign of Messiah. The "aionios" Gospel is not therefore in Christian language the "everlasting" Gospel. Christians do not suppose that the Gospel lasts for ever. Rather it is the Gospel concerning the Kingdom-age (Rev. 14:6). ...
The "aion" to come is not therefore eternity as opposed to "time," and we must free ourselves from the philosophical concepts, "in time" and "out of time." . . .
[It is] misleading to translate the "aion" as "eternity," for the "aion" is still a period of time. It is no less imprecise to render "aionios life" as "eternal life."