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CHAPTER XXIV.

Future Misery. Q. 1. What are the evidences that there is a future state of misery for those of mankind who die impenitent?

A. 1. The plain and explicit declarations of the Scriptures, in relation to this subject, are decisive evidence of the truth of this doctrine. (a) 2. The opposition made to the instruction of Moses and the Prophets, Christ and the Apostles, by the impenitent, to whom they preached, is evidence that they did teach this doctrine. Their hearers would never have been so bitter against the truths they taught, if they had declared that all men would be saved. 3. The concern in many for their own future salvation, produced by the preaching of Christ and His Apostles, is an evidence that the doctrine of future punishment was taught by them. 4. The great solicitude for the salvation of souls which the Prophets, Christ, and the Apostles manifested, proves beyond a doubt, that they believed in the doctrine of the future misery of the wicked, and that they taught it.

(a) John v. 29. 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.-Mark xvi. 16. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved ; but he that believeth not shall be damned.-Ps. ix. 17. The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God.-Prov. xi. 7. When a wicked man dieth, his expectations shall perish ; and the hope of unjust men perisheth.—John viii. 36. He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life; and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.-Phil. iii. 19. Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is their shame, who mind earthly things.--Matt. xxv. 30. And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.Matt. vii. 13. Enter ye in at the strait gate; for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat.-Prov. i. 31. Therefore shall they eat of the fruit of their own way, and be filled with their own devices.

Q. 2. Why does God inflict misery or penal evil upon the wicked in the world to come?

A. He does it because they deserve it, and because the general good requires it. By punishing the wicked God shows His hatred of sin and love of holiness, maintains the authority of His law aud government, vindicates His character as moral Governor, and promotes the general good of the universe.

Q. 3. How long will the future misery of the wicked continue ?

A. Eternally. Reason teaches that God may punish sinners so long as they continue to sin, and there is no reason to suppose that those who die impenitent will ever cease to sin; for as inful volition or exercise will never produce a holy one. Sinners, too, will always deserve to be punished. God may, therefore, justly punish them forever. With respect to the duration of future punishment, mankind are not proper judges, for they know not the full demerit of sin. This God alone can determine; and He speaks of it in the Scriptures as eternal,'« everlasting, forever,' 'forever and ever.' We must therefore renounce the Bible, or believe the doctrine of endless future punishment. (6)

Q. 4. Is there any evidence that those who die impenitent will be restored or annihilated, in any period in eternity ?

(6) Matt. xxv. 46. And these shall go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into life eternal.—2 Thess. i. 9. Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power.-Rev. xiv. 11. And the smoke of their torment ascendeih up forever and ever, and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image ; and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.-Dan. xii. 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.-—Mark iii. 29. But he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of eternal damnation.Matt. xxvi. 24. The Son of man goeth, as it is written of him but wo unto that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! it had been good for that man if he had not been born. See alss reference (e).

A. There is none. The punishment of the future world is not disciplinary or remedial. It is not so in the case of rebel angels. And we have no evidence, from reason or revelation, that it is so with the finally impenitent of the human race. Further, neither reason nor Scripture gives us any assurance or intimation whatever, that the finally impenitent can expiate their sins by suffering for a limited time. The doctrine of annihilation, or literal destruction of the wicked, is nowhere taught, but is everywhere expressly or impliedly opposed in the Bible. The doctrine, then, of restitution and of annihilation is unscriptural and false. (c)

Q. 5. By what language is the future punishment of the wicked represented in the Sacred Scriptures ?

A. It is represented by terms the most terrific and affecting. It is called death,' worm that never dieth,' bottomless pit,' darkness,'«mist of darkness, blackness of darkness forever,' 'Jake of fire and brimstone,''fire that never shall be quenched,” suffering the vengeance of eternal fire,'furnace of fire, 'fire prepared for the devil and his angels.' Though these expressions are metaphorical, yet they convey the idea of the greatest and most dreadful pains and torments. The capacities and faculties of the wicked will be much enlarged after death, so that they will

(c) Luke xvi. 22-26. 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. And in hell he lifted up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. 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. But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy life-time receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things; but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented. And besides 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 ihence.-Rev. xxii. 11. He that is unjust, let him be unjust still; and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still; and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still; and he that is holy, let him be holy still.

be capable of suffering much more misery in the future than in the present state.

Q. 6. Will there be different degrees of punishment inflicted

upon

the wicked hereafter ? A. There will. Some will endure more misery than others, though all will be punished eternally This idea may be thus illustrated ; two cords may extend around the earth, yet one be twice as large in diameter as the other; two persons may be afflicted with the same malady during the same length of time, yet one suffer thrice the distress of the other. Punishment in eternity will be according to the number, magnitude, and aggravation of offences committed in this state of existence. (d)

Q. 7. Is the future misery of the wicked bodily, or mental, or both ?

A. It is both. As the body and soul constitute the person that sinned in this life, so they both will constitute the person that will suffer in the life to come, after the separate state closes, though before this time the soul only will suffer. The representations of Scripture on this subject, though they should be considered figurative, seem to convey the idea of corporeal punishment. And it is reasonable to conclude there will be bodily sufferings, because the soul cannot suffer greatly without affecting the body, and the finally impenitent will be completely miserable. But bodily distress will not be the principal punishment of the wicked. Mental sufferings will chiefly constitute their misery. These will arise from various sources, viz. 1. Clear convictions of sin, guilt, and ill desert; 2. Recollection of the kind admonitions and remonstrances of God, of His ministers and people, and that salvation was once within their reach, but now, by their neglect, is removed to

(d) 2 Cor. v. 10. For we must all appear before the judgment-seat of Christ ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.-Rev. xx. 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.-Rom. ii. 6. Who will render to every man according to his deeds.

an infinite distance from them, and that they must dwell forever in utter despair ; 3. Raging desires of ease and pleasure never gratified; 4. Association with the devil and his angels, and all wicked and impenitent men, who will torment one another; 5. The knowledge that God overrules their sin and misery for the good of His friends; 6. Banishment from the favorable presence of God; 7. A view of the righteous in exquisite happiness; and, 8. The sinfulness and malignity of their own hearts. These will constitute a hell within them, and lay a foundation for wretchedness without intermission, abatement, or end. (e)

(e) Matt. xxv.41. Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels.—Matt. xiii. 30.40, 41, 42. 49,50. Let both grow together until the harvest ; and in the time of the harvest, I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them; but gather the wheat into my barn. As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire, so shall it be in the end of this world. 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. So shall it be 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; there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.—Rev. xix. 20. And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet, that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived ihem that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worship ped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.—Rev. xx. 10. 14, 15. And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night forever and ever. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosocver was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.—Rev. xxi. 8. But the fearful and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone; which is the second death.-Rev. xiv. 10. The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone, in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb.—Matt. iïi. 12. Whose fan is in his hand, and

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