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Eternal Destinations



In this page, I will focus on a few aspects of eternal punishment and reward. I will provide some scripture about what the eternal destinations were before Christ's death, and what changed at His death. I will go ahead and provide the few scriptures about the rest of the punishments of various wicked agents such as the bottomless pit and the long term solution of God - the lake of fire or the second death. Then, I will move on to study some scripture about the rapture of the Church.


In my notes on Noah's flood, I talked about the angels who had produced offspring from the daughters of man in an effort to pollute man's blood line and thwart God's plan of salvation for mankind. I had made mention of the fact that these angels were now held in chains for their sin. I gave the scripture verses associated with this, but didn't take time to read them then since that wasn't the focus of that message.

I'll start this discussion with a little more information about that which may help clarify what happened and the results. I'll will start by reading from the book of Jude:

Jude 1:5-7:

1:5 I will therefore put you in remembrance, though ye once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed them that believed not.

1:6 And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day.

1:7 Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.

This passage of scripture is talking about several major judgments of God. The first verse describes how God dealt with the Israelis who were destroyed because they did not believe in God even after all He had done for them.

The second verse refers to the results of the judgment of God upon the wicked angels. When tied with the next verse, it also illuminates why the judgment occurred. Some points about this:

  1. The word "keep" can also be translated as preserved. The Amplified Bible suggests care for, guard, and hold to as other possible translations. The "estate of the angels" is referred to as a place of power in the Amplified Bible. Literally, this verse is talking of those angels who did not choose to stay in their own realm.
  2. The Greek for the word "habitation" is only used in one other place in the Bible (2 Cor. 5:1-2). In this passage, it is clearly speaking of a physical body as it appears on Earth today, and as it will appear in heaven. There is no reason to believe it means otherwise in this passage.

2 Corinthians 5:1-2:

5:1 For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.

5:2 For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven:

  1. The final punishment for these angels is to be chained in eternal chains under darkness until the judgment of the great day.
  2. More information about their sin can be gleaned from the next verse. Jude 1:7 discusses the sins of Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities of the plains, where the people gave themselves over to fornication and went after strange flesh. Their sin was sodomy - going outside the sex bounds God had laid out. These sinners were destroyed by fire. The verse is connected in two ways to the sins of the angels. The verse starts with "Even as" to provide the first direct link, and then continues with "in like manner" which I believe connects both the cities of the plain and the acts of the angels to those of Sodom and Gomorrha and strengthens the ties between the two verses and the types of their sin.

More information about the state of these angels can be found in:

2 Peter 2:4-6:

2:4 For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment;

2:5 And spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly;

2:6 And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly;

And then Peter continues in the following verses describing how God treats the just. From this passage we learn some more about the state of these angels. God didn't spare them, but cast them down to hell. The word for hell here is tartaros in the Greek and tartarus in the Latin, which is where this part of hell gets its name.

It is again made clear in this passage, that some angels sinned. These were not just the rebellious angels who fell with Lucifer. If they were just chained for rebellion, then all (including Satan) would be chained since God is a just God as described in this passage. He wouldn't punish some and not punish the rest, nor would He punish them differently.

Since rebellious angels are still around and will fight against Christ in the middle of Daniel's 70th week. (Rev. 12:7-17), this cannot be the sin to which Peter refers. Here, as with the scripture we read from Jude, the passage is tied to a scripture reference to Sodom and Gomorrha. In this case an intermediate reference in the time line is made to the salvation of Noah when the old world was destroyed by flood.

From this passage, we see again a description of this place called tartarus. It is inhabited by angels. It is in some place lower than the heavens. It is a place of darkness, both literally and spiritually. At the great white throne judgment, it will be cast into the lake of fire forming the second death.

Christ is recorded as speaking to these angels after His death in:

1 Peter 3:19-20:

3:19 By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison;

3:20 Which sometime were disobedient, when once the long suffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water.

The word for preach here is more in the line of announce than evangelize. Again, the reference is to being disobedient just before the time of Noah while the ark was being built. There would be no reason to preach just to humans of this time period who were in hell, even if the word spirit referred to the human soul. Any human who has died is in the same state now as those from Adam to Noah.

In general terms, if they were holy and died before Christ died on the cross, their soul was in Paradise, and if they died after Christ's death and believed on Him, they are in Heaven. If neither of these were true, they were in Hell. Instead, this passage refers to those fallen and chained angels who are being held in tartarus for their sins.

The only objection to the Bible interpretation of sons of God being angels in the passage preceding Noah's flood is associated with a question of how could the angels accomplish the sexual aspect of fathering the giant races with the daughters of man. Angels are mentioned many times in scripture, and usually in contexts where it is clear to the person being spoken to that an angel is doing the talking. But I would point out a couple of other instances where the people were with angels without their knowledge. The first deals with the two angels who went to Sodom to rescue Lot and his family. The second is a general reference in the New Testament.

Genesis 19:4-5; Hebrews 13:2:

19:4 But before they lay down, the men of the city, even the men of Sodom, compassed the house round, both old and young, all the people from every quarter:

19:5 And they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to thee this night? bring them out unto us, that we may know them.

13:2 Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.

It is clear from these scriptures that angels can appear in a form that looks perfectly human. Indeed, many references to angels include descriptions of human physical attributes. There is no reason to believe that the human appearance is partial and not complete. How this happens, I don't pretend to understand. Whether there are physical changes or limitations they assume to disguise their true nature, I don't know.

Assuming a scriptural interpretation that angels in some human-like form are capable of reproduction with mankind and did so with the daughters of man before Noah's day and afterward clarifies the whole issue of the giant races recorded in the history of the Bible. It also takes care of the problem raised by the existence of the giant races in light of God's command for species to reproduce after their own kind. Such extremes of size as recorded in various scriptures wouldn't be possible from two humans alone.

Places for Souls after Death but before Christ's Victory on the Cross

We have touched briefly on the difference in the eternal resting place of souls before and after Christ died on the cross. We will first study what happened to souls / spirits before His death and then go on to study what happens to righteous souls / spirits now.

Before Christ died on the cross and won victory over Satan, the righteous dead went to what is called Paradise or by the euphemism of Abraham's bosom. The wicked went to hell (Heb. sheol / Gr. hades). Descriptions of this are recorded in several places. We will read the account of Lazarus and the rich man found in Luke 16:19-31 since it is the most complete description of these two areas and give scripture references to others as needed.

Luke 16:19-31:

16:19 There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day:

16:20 And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores,

16:21 And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores.

16:22 And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried;

16:23 And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.

16:24 And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.

16:25 But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented.

16:26 And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence.

16:27 Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father's house:

16:28 For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment.

16:29 Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.

16:30 And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent.

16:31 And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.

Dake comments that this was a literal story of two beggars. One begged in his life on earth and the other begged in his life after death.

It can be seen from the actual experience of these two men that Jesus Christ was declaring in plain terms the reality of immortality of the soul, the consciousness of souls after leaving the body, the fact of different places for the righteous and the wicked between death and resurrection of the body, and the truth of torment for the wicked and bliss for the righteous.

Facts about Lazarus (Lk. 16:22):
  1. He was a beggar full of sores which the dogs licked (v 20-22)
  2. Laid at the rich man's gate to beg the crumbs of his table (v 21)
  3. Died and his body was buried (v 22)
  4. His soul and spirit were carried by the angels to paradise (v 22)
  5. He was with Abraham and all the redeemed (v 23)
  6. He was in comfort; no hell, no torment, no separation from the saved, no crying for mercy, no regrets of the past, and no thirst or punishment in hell fire (v 23-25)
  7. He retained soul and spirit faculties capable of enjoyment of eternity with God (v 24-26)

Facts about the rich man (Lk. 16:22):
  1. Clothed in purple and fared sumptuously every day (v 19)
  2. Died and his body was buried (v 22)
  3. His soul went to hell (v 23)
  4. He was in torment (v 23-25, 28)
  5. He possessed eyes that could see and distinguish persons (v 23)
  6. He cried for mercy and begged for Lazarus to bring a drop of water to cool his tongue (v 24)
  7. He still had a tongue, eyes, memory, intelligence, feelings, emotions, will, voice, reasoning powers, concern for his brothers, and all other soul passions and spirit faculties (v 23-31)

18 facts of the story are:
  1. Regardless of the state in this life the next life may be different (v 22-32)
  2. Poor people can be well off in the next life if they are saved. Otherwise, they will suffer hell like the unsaved rich
  3. The rich do not suffer hell unless they are unsaved
  4. The rich, like the poor, must make proper preparation for the next life or be lost and punished
  5. The rich and the poor both die and their bodies are buried
  6. The saved are carried by angels into paradise (v 22; Lk. 23:43), which was then in the lower parts of the earth (Mt. 12:40; Ps. 16:10), but since Eph. 4:8-10; Heb. 2:14-15 the righteous go to heaven (2 Cor. 5:8; Phil. 1:21-24; Heb. 12:22-23; Rev. 6:9-11)
  7. There is something real at death for angels to carry and a real place to put it (v 22)
  8. The unsaved go to hell when they leave their bodies (v 23; Jas. 2:26; Isa. 14:9; Rev. 20:7-15; Ps. 9:17, 55:15)
  9. The lost are in conscious torment in hell (v 23-28; Dt. 32:22; 2 Sam. 22:6; Ps. 18:5, 116:3, 139:8; Isa. 14:9-11; Ezek. 32:21; Cant. 8:6; Hab. 2:5)
  10. Souls and spirits have spirit forms with bodily parts, like the parts of the physical body. They wear clothes, talk, feel, etc. (v 22-24; Isa. 14:9-11; Mt. 17:3; Ps. 16:10; Heb. 12:22-23; Rev. 6:9-11).
  11. God only can put into hell (v 22-32; Ezek. 31:16; Ps. 9:17; Mt. 10:28; Lk. 12:4-5; Rev. 20:10-15; Mt. 25:41, 46; 2 Pet. 2:4; Jude 6-7)
  12. Souls are immortal in hell and heaven (v 22-32; 1 Pet. 3:4, 4:6; Lk. 20:38; 2 Cor. 5:8; Phil. 1:21-24; Heb. 12:22-23; Rev. 6:9-11)
  13. Prayer and conversations continue in hell and heaven (v 22-32; Isa. 14:9-11; Jonah 2:2; Ezek. 32:21; Rev. 6:9-11)
  14. Fire and torments are in the present and eternal hell (v 22-32; Rev. 14:9-11, 19:20, 20:10-15, 21:8; Isa. 66:22-24; Mt. 8:12, 13:42, 49-50, 24:51, 25:41, 46; Mk. 9:43-49)
  15. Unsaved ones are confined to hell until the judgment (v 26; Rev. 20:11-15)
  16. One can escape hell if conditions are met in this life (Pr. 23:14; Jn. 3:16; Tit. 2:11-14; Lk. 13:1-5; 2 Cor. 5:17-21)
  17. Both present and eternal hells are located in "the lower parts of the earth" (Ps. 63:9; Eph. 4:8-10; Mt. 12:40), "the nether parts of the earth" (Ezek. 31:14-18, 32:18-27), and "beneath the earth" (Pr. 15:24; Isa. 14:9-15; Ezek. 31:14-18, 32:18-27; Rev. 21:8)
  18. Satan, angels, demons, and men will be put into eternal hell (Mt. 8:29, 25:41; Rev. 20:10-15; 2 Pet. 2:4; Jude 6-7)

Not one of the above facts or scriptures could possibly apply to the grave, proving hell and the grave are two different things. See notes on Ps. 9:17; Lk. 12:5, 16:26; Rev. 20:3; Isa. 30:33.

Some other notes. At that point in time, before Christ's death, Satan was holding the souls of everyone who died hostage. After Christ died, Satan lost his power over the righteous dead. Before Christ's death, the righteous dead lived in paradise, which is a different place than heaven. Where they were, they could see the ungodly being punished in hell and converse with them. However there was a chasm between the two areas which prevented souls from moving from one place to the other. Even after a long time of torment, the word didn't spread fast. New arrivals to hell still tried to entreat saints to do things for them much as people alive on earth do today with the same success.

What Changed at Christ's Death

When Christ fulfilled His mission on earth and died on the cross as a sinless sacrifice, He broke the hold that Satan had on the righteous dead. Reading from:

Ephesians 4:7:

4:7 But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.

4:8 Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.

4:9 (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?

4:10 He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.)

4:11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;

At this point, all who were godly (the captives) were taken to heaven, and all godly people who have died since that time have their soul and spirit taken directly to heaven. The body remains in the ground until the time of the resurrection. For a couple of other scriptures on the subject, we turn to Hebrews:

Hebrews 2:14:

2:14 Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil;

2:15 And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.

and from:

2 Corinthians 5:8:

5:8 We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.

The paradise compartment of eternal rest is now empty. The great gulf still stands to bar the movement of the wicked dead to its space. Christ has been given the keys of hades and of death. In Revelation, the Bible records:

Revelation 1:18:

1:18 I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.

The abode of the wicked souls / spirits did not change at Christ's death. More souls are added there every day. This will continue until the second resurrection of the wicked after the Millennium in time for the white throne judgment. We will try to go ahead and cover the punishments of the various wicked beings mentioned in the Bible (without going too much into the prophecies of Revelation) and then go ahead and conclude the series with what the church can look forward to.

The Bottomless Pit or Abyss

The bottomless pit or the abyss is mentioned first in Revelation associated with the 5th trumpet identifying the first woe on men. It is a prison for evil spirits.

Revelation 9:1:

9:1 And the fifth angel sounded, and I saw a star fall from heaven unto the earth: and to him was given the key of the bottomless pit.

9:2 And he opened the bottomless pit; and there arose a smoke out of the pit, as the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit.

9:3 And there came out of the smoke locusts upon the earth: and unto them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power.

9:4 And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, neither any green thing, neither any tree; but only those men which have not the seal of God in their foreheads.

9:5 And to them it was given that they should not kill them, but that they should be tormented five months: and their torment was as the torment of a scorpion, when he striketh a man.

9:6 And in those days shall men seek death, and shall not find it; and shall desire to die, and death shall flee from them.

9:7 And the shapes of the locusts were like unto horses prepared unto battle; and on their heads were as it were crowns like gold, and their faces were as the faces of men.

9:8 And they had hair as the hair of women, and their teeth were as the teeth of lions.

9:9 And they had breastplates, as it were breastplates of iron; and the sound of their wings was as the sound of chariots of many horses running to battle.

9:10 And they had tails like unto scorpions, and there were stings in their tails: and their power was to hurt men five months.

9:11 And they had a king over them, which is the angel of the bottomless pit, whose name in the Hebrew tongue is Abaddon, but in the Greek tongue hath his name Apollyon.

Some facts about it. It is different from tartarus, sheol-hades, or the lake of fire. It is now locked. It is filled with tremendous amounts of smoke. There is enough that when the pit is opened, the sun and air will be literally darkened. It is filled with demon creatures of a description just read, and ruled over by a king with the name of Abaddon or Apollyon in the Greek. This name translates to destruction or destroyer. What the original sin of these creatures were is not known, but they had been bound for a long time. The beast, for example is said to have been, but not be currently on the Earth.

This place is also mentioned in Luke and is evidently a place where Christ has power and authority to command demons to enter. Whatever else there is about this area, demons do not want to go there. Reading from Luke 8 in the story of the man possessed by a legion of demons...

Luke 8:28:

8:28 When he saw Jesus, he cried out, and fell down before him, and with a loud voice said, What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God most high? I beseech thee, torment me not.

8:29 (For he had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For oftentimes it had caught him: and he was kept bound with chains and in fetters; and he brake the bands, and was driven of the devil into the wilderness.)

8:30 And Jesus asked him, saying, What is thy name? And he said, Legion: because many devils were entered into him.

8:31 And they besought him that he would not command them to go out into the deep.

8:32 And there was there an herd of many swine feeding on the mountain: and they besought him that he would suffer them to enter into them. And he suffered them.

The word translated as deep here is also translated bottomless pit 7 times and deep 2 times. The term bottomless pit appears in some other portions of scripture. The first two refer to the beast which comes from the pit and attacks the two witnesses in Revelation:

Revelation 11:7:

11:7 And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them.

17:8 The beast that thou sawest was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition: and they that dwell on the earth shall wonder, whose names were not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, when they behold the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.

Later references include those just before the beginning of the Millennium or thousand year reign of Christ, and the other is immediately after it.

Revelation 20:1:

20:1 And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand.

20:2 And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years,

20:3 And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season.

20:7 And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,

20:8 And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea.

20:9 And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.

This passage also gives a glimpse as to just how powerful the stubbornness of humanity and proclivity toward sin is. After 1,000 years of a peaceful reign with Christ, when Satan is loosed from the pit, he will still be able to deceive the nations and bring them together to battle Christ. These will be destroyed by fire from God out of heaven, and immediately after this, the final judgment or White Throne judgment occurs. Humanity is never mentioned as having any part of punishment in the bottomless pit. It is solely used for evil / unclean spirits, demons, and as a temporary place of torment for various evil angels who have crusaded against God and led nations to fall, or who will lead nations to fall in the future.

The Lake of Fire or Second Death

After the beast and the false prophet have done their best to destroy mankind, they are cast into the lake of fire. They are the first inhabitants that are listed in scripture.

Revelation 19:20:

19:20 And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.

After the Millennium, when Satan is loosed from the bottomless pit, does his dirty work again and deceives the nations again, he is finally cast into the bottomless pit. There is no record of any other being added here between the time when the beast and false prophet are sent here and Satan joins them.

Revelation 20:10:

20:10 And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.

Finally, getting back to humanity, all of the souls / spirits which were daily added to the torment compartment of sheol-hades are judged. These souls / spirits have remained in hell from their physical bodies death until the end of the Millennium when hell will deliver up the souls in it and the grave will deliver its bodies to be reunited and transformed to eternal bodies/soul/spirits that are then judged and cast into the eternal lake of fire.

Revelation 20:11-15:

20:11 And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.

20:12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

20:13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.

20:14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.

20:15 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.

At the great white throne judgment, the wicked will be judged according to their works. If their names are not in the book of life, they will be cast into the lake of fire. All who were saved at the rapture will stand before the judgment seat of Christ which we will get to later. This judges those throughout time which rejected Christ and God.

Dake has these comments about the White Throne Judgment.

Judgment of the wicked dead (Rev. 20:11-15; Acts 17:31; Rom. 2:16)
  1. Subjects: The wicked dead (Rev. 20:5-6, 12-15) who are not judged at the judgment of the nations 1,000 years before (Mt. 13:30, 39-50, 24:51, 25:3-46; Rev. 14:9-11, 19:20). These include all wicked men from Adam to end of Millennium.
  2. Time:
    1. End of the Millennium (Rev. 20:7-15)
    2. When heavens and earth are renovated by fire (Rev. 20:11; 2 Pet. 3:7-13; Heb. 1:10-12, 12:25-28; Rom. 1:21-23)
  3. Place: At the great white throne (Rev. 20:11; Ps. 9:7-8). The throne is literal and the white indicates absolute righteousness and justice of the judgment (Ps. 45:6-7, 96:10-13; Jn. 7:24; Acts 17:31; 2 Tim. 4:8), just as white robes indicate the righteousness of the saints (Rev. 19:8).
  4. Basis:
    1. Law of conscience (Rom. 2:12-16)
    2. Law of memory (Lk. 16:25)
    3. Law of Moses (Rom. 2:12-16)
    4. Law of character (Heb. 3:8-10; Eph. 4:19)
    5. Gospel (Rom. 2:12-16)
    6. Records of personal acts (Mt. 12:36; Lk. 12:2-9; Jn. 3:18; Rev. 20:12)
    7. The book of life (Rev. 3:5, 13:8, 17:8, 20:12, 15, 21:27, 22:18-19; Ex. 32:32-33; Ps. 69:28; Dan. 12:1; Lk. 10:20; Phil. 4:3)
    8. The Word of God (Jn. 12:48)
  5. Judges:
    1. God the Father (Rev. 20:12; Heb. 12:23-24, 13:4; Rev. 6:10; Rom. 2:12-16)
    2. God the Son (Jn. 5:19-27; Acts 10:42; 2 Tim. 4:8; Rev. 19:11)

    God will judge by Jesus Christ. The Father will decree, the Son will execute (Acts 10:42, 17:31; Rom. 2:16)

  6. Nature:It will not be a spiritual, invisible, endless process but a definite, literal, visible, and personal trial in God's court similar to a trial on earth (Rev. 20:11-15; Ps. 9:8; Mt. 7:2, 21; Acts 17:31; Rom. 2:12-16; Heb. 9:27)
  7. Universality:
    1. The sea gave up the dead in it. This could only refer to bodies, for souls and spirits of the wicked dead do not remain in the sea at physical death. They go to hell and await the resurrection of their bodies (Rev. 20:13; Lk. 16:19-31; Isa. 14:9). See Hell p. 620-622
    2. Death gave up the dead that are in it. This could only refer to bodies, for the body only dies a physical death (Jas. 2:26). Souls are dead in trespasses and in sins while yet in the body (Mt. 8:22; Eph. 2:1-9; 1 Tim. 5:6). Physical death only, therefore could be the reference.
    3. Hell delivered up the souls that are in it (Rev. 20:13). Souls and not the bodies of the wicked go to hell (see Hell, p. 620-622; Lk. 16:19-31, notes)
  8. Purpose:
    1. To give every man a fair trial before his eternal punishment (Acts 17:31; Ps. 9:8)
    2. To judge the secrets of men (Rom. 2:16)
    3. To judge idle words (Mt. 12:36)
    4. To judge all the works, thoughts, actions, and sins of man (1 Tim. 5:24; 1 Pet. 1:17; Rev. 20:12-13, 22:12; Rom. 2:5-6, 12-16)
    5. To mete out degrees of punishment according to deeds (Mt. 7:2, 10:15, 11:22-24, 12:41-45, 23:12-14, 33; Mk. 6:11; Lk. 10:14, 11:31-32; Rev. 20:11-15, 22:12)
  9. Length:Time in judging all the wicked is not known, but the length of the sentence for all will be eternal. (Mt. 5:30-33, 10:28, 13:42-50, 18:9, 23:15, 33, 24:51, 54:41, 45; Mk. 9:42-48; Lk. 12:5; Heb. 6:2, 10:26-31; Rev. 2:11, 14:9-11, 19:20, 20:10-15, 21:8, 22:15; Isa. 66:22-24)
  10. Results:All in death and hell sent to the lake of fire (Rev. 20:14-15)

The lake of fire is the final resting place of all the wicked beings God ever created. This includes Satan, the angels which followed him, demons, and men. It is eternal, and not a place you want to be.

Dake excerpt taken from Dake's Annotated Reference Bible, © 1961, 1963 by Finis Jennings Dake, and is reproduced on our web site with permission from representatives of Dake Publishing.