Doctrine of Eternal Punishments

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Staff member
I don't "get out" enough to know if this is a thing amongst otherwise bible believing folks, or rather it should indicate where there's this error, the whole faith is generally unsound. We get folks from time to time that know they can't get approved for membership, if they are honest and don't try to "fake" reformed just to get on only to flame out in some imagined blaze of standing for what they think is true, who settle for pestering the administrators through the contact form (which only some admins ever see). So this morning we had one who wanted to instruct the PB on the fact that there are no eternal torments awaiting the lost who don't flee to Christ for redemption. So I thought we could use that as a springboard to post information showing what the scriptures actually teach. Post some good links on this thread on the scriptures that give the doctrine of hell and eternal punishment. Maybe they will see it and learn better what the scriptures actually teach.

Here's one:


Staff member
Lastly, do not Socinians err, who deny, That any sin can deserve eternal punishment?
By what reasons are they confuted?
1st. Because all sins deserve eternal death, Rom. 6:23; Ezek. 18:24; Rom. 8:6, 13. 2nd. Because every sin is a transgression of the law, 1 John 3:4. 3rd. Whosoever shall keep the whole law, and ye offend in one point, he is guilty of all, James 2:10, 11; and therefore he deserves etternal punishment. 4th. Because those sins of infirmity and ignorance which the saints are subject to, and which the Papists call venial sins, will not suffer them to stand in judgment before God, nor can the saints be justified from them by faith; and therefore, in strict justice, they merit and deserve hell, Ps. 143:2 and 130:3, 4, 8. 5th. Because God commanded believers under the law to offer typical sacrifices for making a propitiation for such sins; and Christ did really, by his own precious blood, purge them away. For by no less price could they be purged, he being made a curse for them, that he might liberate those from the curse of the law, which they had deserved for such sins as well as for others, Lev. 4:2, 3, 14, 15, 20, 22, 24, 31; 5:17, 18; Gal. 3:13; Heb. 10:10, 12, 14, 22; 1 John 1:7, 9; Eph. 5:25-27; 1 Pet. 1:18, 19. 6th. Because every sin is against the supremest law-giver, against his holiness and goodness, against his infinite majesty, and floweth from a formal or virtual contempt of God; and therefore, the least sin cannot but deserve God's wrath and curse eternally, James 2:10, 11; Lev. 10:3 and 11:44, 45; 1 John 3:4; Eph. 5:6.​
David Dickson, Truth's Victory Over Error, on Westminster Confession of Faith chapter 6, Of the Fall of Man, of Sin, and the Punishment thereof (Presbyterian's Armoury Publications, 2002), 33. [This was MW's effort; I think later Banner or someone did a version as well]


Puritan Board Senior
Wilhelmus A’ Brakel: The Christian’s Reasonable Service (RHB Edition) Volume 4 pg. 348 - 350 :

The Final Judgment to be Greatly Feared by the Ungodly
Consider all the above collectively and bring it vividly to your attention. Christ will come to judgment; He will appear in a very conspicuous manner and every eye will see Him; He will come with great glory and as Judge to execute judgment; He will summon all men before Him and separate the good from the evil; He will examine everyone painstakingly and make all their deeds manifest; He will pronounce the sentence of life or death upon everyone‟s work. Thereupon He will execute the sentence and cast the ungodly into hell and usher the godly into heaven.

How this should cause the hair of the ungodly to stand on end for fear, for it will be a dreadful day for them! It is “that great and notable day of the Lord” (Acts 2:20). “For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the Lord of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch” (Mal 4:1). Then they will experience what is written: “The sinners in Zion are afraid; fearfulness hath surprised the hypocrites. Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire? who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings?” (Isa 33:14). Then they shall say “to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of Him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: for the great day of His wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?” (Rev 6:16-17). It is amazing that people who are so desirous to know future things and so careful to make provision for their own old age as well as for their children and grandchildren—and if possible gather treasures—are nevertheless so careless about this great and terrible day. Their conscience convinces them of sin, and if they would but give a little heed to their conscience, they would be fearful of wrath. This day makes no impression in the hearts of many, however; they neither wish to think of it nor reflect upon what it will be like. They ignore it, as if the likelihood of this day would be less if they do not think about it. The devils tremble for this day and Felix became very fearful when he heard Paul speak of the impending judgment. Who is, however, presently persuaded by the terror of the Lord to believe? It is a grievous sign when someone who lives in sin nevertheless does not tremble for this great judgment.
You who are careless, insensitive, comfortable in your sin, carnal, worldly-minded, of the earth earthy, immoral, fornicators, adulterers, proud boasters, gamblers, drunkards, liars, backbiters, hypocrites, and disobedient rejecters of the gospel—hear and take notice. How do you think you will fare? I assure you that you will be summoned to judgment just as you are. You will see the Lord Jesus in glory, sitting as your Judge upon the throne of His glory. The call will go out to you, “Adam, where art thou? What have you done?” You will then tremblingly appear, and there the history of your life, together with a review of all your private and public sins will be read to you. This will silence you and the Judge will look upon you in wrath, and in anger will address you as a cursed one. The godly will behold you with contempt and approve of your condemnation. All this you will have to endure for a long time with utmost anxiety. It will be unbearable to you that thosewhom you now despise will then be in glory and will judge you. Upon this will follow the eternal casting away into the pool which burns with sulphur and where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. There the smoke of your torment will arise to all eternity, and there the worm of your conscience, which will bite you furiously, will never die. There you will seek death but not find it, and in unbearable despair you will bite your tongue for grief. All this will come upon you. Where will you then flee? All grace will then be withheld from you; all hiding places will have been removed, and all refreshment, change of condition, and relief will then cease. Only your sorrows according to soul and body will have no end. Oh, that by the terror of the Lord we could persuade you and that we could save you through fear! Now the wrath of God can still be escaped, since Christ as the way, the truth, and the life is yet offered to you in the gospel. Therefore, repent now and believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved. May the almighty God now cause you to come tremblingly to the Lord and His goodness, so that you may stand in that day before the Son of man with great liberty and joy when He will come in His glory.

Regi Addictissimus

Completely sold out to the King
Shedd has an able defense in his Dogmatic Theology. Below is an excerpt along with the proof texts that he puts forth.

Shedd writes:

The mere perusal of Christ’s words when he was upon earth, without note or comment upon them, will convince the unprejudiced that the Redeemer of sinners knew and believed that for impenitent men and devils there is an endless punishment. We solicit a careful reading and pondering of the following well-known passages:

When the Son of Man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory; and before him shall be gathered all nations, and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats. And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. Then shall he say unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, you cursed, into everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels. And these shall go away into everlasting punishment. (Matt. 25:31–33, 41, 46)

If your right hand offend you, cut it off: it is better for you to enter into life maimed than having two hands to go into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched, where their worm dies not and the fire is not quenched. And if your foot offend you, cut if off: it is better for you to enter into life than having two feet to be cast into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched, where their worm dies not and the fire is not quenched. And if your eye offend you, pluck it out: it is better for you to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye than having two eyes to be cast into hellfire, where their worm dies not and the fire is not quenched. (Mark 9:43–48)

What shall it profit a man if he shall gain the whole world and lose his own soul? What is a man advantaged if he gain the whole world and be cast away? (Mark 8:36; Luke 9:25)

The rich man died and was buried, and in hell he lifted up his eyes being in torments. (Luke 16:22–23)

Fear not them which kill the body but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. (Matt. 10:28)

The Son of Man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend and them which do iniquity and shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth. (Matt. 13:41–42)

Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in your name? Then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, you that work iniquity. (Matt. 7:22–23)

He that denies me before men shall be denied before the angels of God. Unto him that blasphemes against the Holy Spirit, it shall never be forgiven. (Luke 12:9–10)

Woe unto you, you blind guides. You serpents, you generation of vipers, how can you escape the damnation of hell? (Matt. 23:16, 33)

Woe unto that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It had been good for that man if he had not been born. (Matt. 26:24)

The Lord of that servant will come in a day when he looks not for him and at an hour when he is not aware and will cut him in sunder and appoint him his portion with unbelievers. (Luke 12:46)

He that believes not shall be damned. (Mark 16:16)

You, Capernaum, which are exalted unto heaven, shall be brought down to hell. (Matt. 11:23)

At the end of the world, the angels shall come forth and sever the wicked from among the just and shall cast them into the furnace of fire. (Matt. 13:49–50)

Then said Jesus again to them, I go my way, and you shall seek me and shall die in your sins: whither I go you cannot come. (John 8:21)

The hour is coming in which all that are in their graves shall hear my voice and shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation. (John 5:28–29)

To all this, add the description of the manner in which Christ will discharge the office of the eternal judge. John the Baptist represents him as one “whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor and gather his wheat into the garner, but will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire” (Matt. 3:12). And Christ describes himself as a householder who will say to the reapers, “Gather together first the tares and bind them in bundles to burn them” (13:30); as a fisherman “casting a net into the sea and gathering of every kind, which when it was full he drew to the shore and sat down and gathered the good into vessels, but cast the bad away” (13:47–48); as the bridegroom who took the wise virgins “with him to the marriage” and shut the door upon the foolish (25:10); and as the man traveling into a far country who delivered talents to his servants and afterward reckons with them, rewarding the “good and faithful” and “casting the unprofitable servant into outer darkness, where there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth” (25:19–20).

Let the reader now ask himself the question: Do these representations and this phraseology make the impression that the future punishment of sin is to be remedial and temporary? Are they adapted to make this impression? Were they intended to make this impression? Is it possible to believe that that holy and divine person who uttered these fearful and unqualified warnings, eighteen hundred years ago, respecting the destiny of wicked men and devils, knew that a time is coming when there will be no wicked men and devils in the universe of God and no place of retributive torment? Did Jesus of Nazareth hold an esoteric doctrine of hell: a different view of the final state of the wicked from that which the common and natural understanding of his language would convey to his hearers and has conveyed to the great majority of his readers in all time? Did he know that in the far-off future, a day will come when those tremendous scenes which he described—the gathering of all mankind, the separation of the evil from the good, the curse pronounced upon the former and the blessing upon the latter—will be looked back upon by all mankind as “an unsubstantial pageant faded,” as a dream that is passed and a watch in the night?

Jesus Christ is the person responsible for the doctrine of eternal perdition. He is the being with whom all opponents of this theological tenet are in conflict. Neither the Christian church nor the Christian ministry are the authors of it. The Christian ministry never would have invented the dogma; neither would they have preached it in all the Christian centuries, like Jeremiah, with shrinking and in tears, except at the command of that same Lord God who said to the weeping prophet, “Whatsoever I command you, you shall speak” (Jer. 1:7).

Shedd, William Greenough Thayer. Dogmatic Theology. Ed. Alan W. Gomes. 3rd ed. Phillipsburg, NJ: P & R Pub., 2003. Print.
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