Maxey - Thrasher Debate

Eternal Destiny of the Wicked
Perpetual Torment or Ultimate Extinction
(An In-Depth Biblical Discussion)

Thursday, March 28, 2002

Thomas Thrasher's Comments On
Al's Last Post & The Nature of Man

After reading Al’s fourth article, I think I will borrow his sentiment “that there are so many statements made by HIM in dire need of clarification and correction that I hardly know where to begin.” However, as usual, I choose to begin by reviewing a few of his remarks in that article.


I wish to point out first that there is much in his discussion of “spiritual death” and “figurative language” with which I agree, and that I believed for years before I ever heard of Al Maxey.

Al declares his agreement with my conclusion “that ‘death’ is a separation.” He says, “I think the word ‘separation’ aptly depicts the severing of one thing from another.” He recognizes “three major types of ‘death’ which directly affect man --- physical, spiritual and eternal,” and he acknowledges that “the concept of ‘separation’ is detected in each of them.”  He also says, “… in each of the three major views: physical, spiritual and eternal … a ‘separation’ has occurred, and in each that separation results in a loss of life in some sense.” Again, he says, “Yes, in each of the three (physical, spiritual and eternal) a separation takes place.” I am glad that Al has made his agreement on this abundantly clear.

However, Al thinks I fail “to perceive that it is the resultant state of such a separation in each of these three views of death that truly defines ‘death,’ rather than the mere fact of separation itself.” He then asks, “… what is the nature of that separation (what exactly is being separated) and what is the resultant state? How does such separation impact the person or persons involved?”

Although I addressed this in my third article, I will seek to clarify these matters by summarizing these points on the following chart.



Type of Death

What/who are Separated?

Resultant State/Impact


(James 2:26)




Body returns to dust/corruption

(Gen. 3:19; Eccl. 12:7)


Spirit resides in Hades/comfort or torment

(Lk. 16:22-26; Acts 2:31)


(Isaiah 59:1-2; Ephesians 2:1)




Sin/no fellowship with God

 (1 Tim. 5:6; Rom. 6:12)


Holiness/desires sinners’ repentance

(1 Pet. 1:15-16; 2 Pet. 3:9)


(Matthew 25:41-46)




Hell/eternal fire and eternal separation from God

(Lk. 12:5; Mt. 10:28; Rev. 20:15)


Heaven/eternal fellowship with His servants

(Heb. 9:24; Rev. 21:3-4; 22:1-5)



Al states: “I believe Thomas has further failed to perceive the distinction between literal and figurative language in one's analysis of the biblical concept of death.”  No, I recognize that “figurative language” is sometimes used. However, my point was this: when a PERSON dies (physically, spiritually, or eternally), he does not become non-existing! I will discuss this concept more a little later.

Al comments on 1 Timothy 5:6 (and similarly on Matthew 8:22 and Ephesians 2:1-2), saying, “Thus, there is NO conflict whatsoever in declaring one ‘dead even while she lives,’ for two completely different applications of ‘death’ are in view --- one physical, one spiritual.” He is correct, UNLESS one takes the position that “death” means that the non-existence or extinction of the WHOLE PERSON occurs!

·        Al wrote: “PHYSICAL death is indeed a separation of the entire person from life (the animation of the physical body). Man is a unified whole … when man dies, man is dead ... ALL of him.” So, Al teaches that when a person dies physically the ENTIRE PERSON is dead.

·        However, he also wrote, “Thomas is partially correct in saying … that death ‘is not cessation of existence or extinction.’ In the physical sense, that is correct”! So, when one dies physically, the ENTIRE PERSON does NOT become extinct!

·        Therefore, when the entire person dies, the entire person does not become extinct! Consequently, physical death is NOT extinction of the entire person!

·        Yet, when I asked Al, “Is he [Al] denying that he believes ‘death’ is extinction, annihilation, or cessation of existence?” he answered, “No, I am not denying that at all. I am affirming it.” So he is affirming that death IS “extinction, annihilation, or cessation of existence”!

That is what I meant when I said his position was “puzzling.” So, when a man dies PHYSICALLY, does he cease to exist or not???  Does he become extinct? Is he annihilated? Does any part of man survive when he dies?

Al explains, “… However, with regard to ‘spiritual death’ something HAS ceased to exist. What no longer exists … is a saving relationship with that God. She has been severed from the very Source of Life Himself. She is DEAD with regard to relationship with deity; that relationship NO LONGER EXISTS!!!” Note: Al contends that in spiritual death the PERSON still exists, but SOMETHING (the relationship with God) does not.

He also says, “It was this that the father similarly spoke of in the Parable of the Prodigal Son (Luke 15). Because of the son's willful severing of himself from the home of the father, he was, during that time, considered ‘dead,’ but came back to ‘life’ when the relationship was restored (vs. 24, 32). Thus, this ‘spiritual death’ is indeed an extinction of something precious beyond compare…” Notice again that Al contends that in spiritual death the PERSON still exists, but SOMETHING (the relationship with the Father) does not.

I am going to agree with this statement and submit the following chart making use of this concept.



Type of Death

What Does Exist

What Does Not Exist


The Person

(Matthew 22:32;      Luke 16:23-31)

A physical, bodily indwelling (James 2:26; Luke 16:22-23)


The Person

(1 Timothy 5:6; Ephesians 2:1-3)

Fellowship with God                   (1 John 1:6; 1 Timothy 5:6)


The Person

(Matthew 25:46;     Mark 9:43-48)

Fellowship with God         (Matthew 25:41; 7:23).


For each type of death something does not exist (the listing is not exhaustive). However, in each case of death, the PERSON continues to exist! I will demonstrate this further in the section on “THE NATURE OF MAN.”


When Peter quoted David’s prophecy (“You will not leave my soul in Hades, nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption”), he recognizes the “dual nature” of Jesus:


·        His physical body: “His flesh” would not see “corruption”--His body would not return to the dust, because He would be raised from the dead (verse 31).

·        His soul: “His soul” was not left in Hades--it would re-enter His body when it was raised (cf. James 2:26).

·        Jesus had told the repentant criminal, “Today you will be with Me in Paradise” (Luke 23:43). When Jesus and this former criminal died on their crosses, their souls/spirits continued to exist in Hades (more specifically in the Paradise portion of Hades). Just before dying, Jesus said, “Father, into Your hands I commend My spirit” (Luke 23:46). “Jesus, when He had cried out again with a loud voice, yielded up His spirit” (Matthew 27:50).

Al’s response is little more than an effort to explain away the clear teaching of the apostle Peter with reference to Hades (Acts 2:27, 31). He says, “What Thomas has failed to perceive, however, is the Jewish concept of the nature of man.” Actually, I have little concern for the “Jewish concept”--I sought to explain the inspired concept expounded by the apostle Peter! Anyone who reads the New Testament should quickly be able to recognize that the Jews had many misconceptions, false notions, and improper attitudes to which the Lord and the inspired writers called attention. Just think of their false concept of the Messiah! Will Al acknowledge this, or will I need I cite a long list of examples as proof?

Al refers to Luke 16:22-23 and Luke 23:43, saying, “Both of these are very significant passages … I consider both of these to be important enough to warrant independent in-depth examination, and will devote the necessary time to both in a future post …” We await his promised explanations of these verses and look forward to discussing them further.

He adds, “If man is WHOLLY MORTAL, with NO PART of him surviving physical death, as I believe the Scriptures teach, then the question of an ‘Intermediate State’ between physical death and resurrection becomes moot!!” (my emphasis, TNT). Again, “However, if man by nature is wholly mortal, then immortality becomes a GIFT bestowed by a gracious life-Giver (as Scripture teaches), and not something inherently ours which can never be taken from us!” I do not believe that immortality is “something inherently ours,” as Al implies that I do! Except for the case of God, where immortality exists (whether of angels, the devil and demons, the human spirit, or the human body in the resurrection), it is conferred by God—it is not inherent, but derived.


In responding to my question (What Bible verse PROVES the “qualitative” aspect of aionios?), Al cites Jude 7 -- Sodom and Gomorrah underwent "the punishment of ETERNAL fire." He then says, “In what sense was this fire ‘eternal’? Is it still burning? Of course not. It is ‘eternal’ in the qualitative sense that it depicts a fire which had its origin in the realm of the Eternal One … The fire itself lasted only for a few hours… The fire had done its work and was no longer needed. It was ETERNAL fire in the sense that it came from GOD, and was sent from OUT OF HEAVEN, but it clearly went out. This is the ‘qualitative’ sense of the word.

I think Al’s conclusion that there is a “qualitative” use of eternal in this verse misses the point entirely (I could quote several “scholars” on this passage who disagree with Al’s conclusion). The point of the verse is that Sodom and Gomorrah (referring to the people who lived in these cities) were punished for their ungodliness by fire from God that serves as a figure/type/symbol of the final punishment of the wicked in “eternal fire.” The text says they “are set forth as an example.” The words “an example” are translated from deigma, which is “met. [metaphorically, TNT] an example by way of warning, Jude 7”  (The Analytical Greek Lexicon, page 86). The fact that ungodly people back then lost their physical lives by means of fire from God serves as “an example by way of warning” people in this age about the “eternal fire” awaiting the ungodly at the coming of the Lord. The following chart provides a few examples of types and antitypes.






Water of the Flood

1 Peter 3:20-21


Most Holy Place

Heb. 9:6-12, 23-26


Passover Lamb

1 Cor. 5:7

Jesus Christ


2 Peter 2:4

“False teachers” (vv. 1-3)

“The unjust” (vv. 9-10)

“These” (vv. 12-19)

Ancient World

2 Peter 2:5

Sodom and Gomorrah

2 Peter 2:6


Jude 5

 “Ungodly men” (v. 4)

“These dreamers” (v. 8)

“Ungodly” (v. 15)


Jude 6

Sodom and Gomorrah

Jude 7

“Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of His saints, to execute judgment on all, to convict all who are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have committed in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him” (Jude 14-15).

“The Lord knows how … to reserve the unjust under punishment for the day of judgment” (2 Peter 2:9).



A significant part of Al’s “evidence” in this debate consists of quotations from an array of supposed “scholars.” His remarks about Hades consist mostly of quotations from a variety of sources, including Dillard Thurman, Willliam Tyndale, Justyn Martyr, John Milton, and (several times) Samuele Bacchiocchi. He continues to quote Edward Fudge rather freely as well. I wonder if my opponent realizes that I can produce a multitude of quotations from “scholars” who agree with the views I hold, and who disagree with his? If he denies this simple fact, I may take time to prove it in my next article! However, my quoting from such men would not prove my position true any more than his quoting men proves his true! I suggest that he give more time and attention to discussing Bible passages and less to what some “scholar” thinks. Obviously, if we are discussing the meanings of words, we may need to cite dictionaries/lexicons for definitions.

Al quotes a portion of Ecclesiastes 9:2-10, as if it supports his position that Sheol is an unconscious state. However, what he fails to report to our readers is that these statements relate to what happens “under the sun” (on earth). Look at the context:

·        “All this I have seen, and applied my heart to every work that is done UNDER THE SUN …” (8:9)

·        “There is a vanity which occurs ON EARTH …” (8:14).

·        “… a man has nothing better UNDER THE SUN … the days of his life which God gives him UNDER THE SUN” (8:15).

·        “… the business that is done ON EARTH …” (8:16).

·        “… the work that is done UNDER THE SUN …” (8:17).

·        “… in all that is done UNDER THE SUN … after that they go to the dead” (9:3).

·        “… Nevermore will they have a share in anything done UNDER THE SUN” (9:6).

·        “… life which He has given you UNDER THE SUN … labor which you perform UNDER THE SUN” (9:9).

·        “… I returned and saw UNDER THE SUN …” (9:11).

·        “This wisdom I have also seen UNDER THE SUN …” (9:13).


Al states: “… the many and varied issues we will be discussing in the course of this debate all hinge upon our understanding of the nature of man. I respectfully urge Thomas … to present his understanding from God's Word of the nature of man.”

I am happy to do so, not by quoting the opinions of so-called “scholars” (such as permeate so much of Al’s material), but by quoting God’s word. I believe that man is basically a two-fold being: BODY and SPIRIT/SOUL (e.g., James 2:26). Sometimes there is a three-fold distinction (e.g., 1 Thessalonians 5:23). Regardless, the point I want to emphasize is that there is more to man than the physical body. My conviction is that the Bible makes this fact abundantly clear.

Matthew 22:31-32, “… have you not read what was spoken to you by God, saying, ‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.”

·        Abraham had been physically dead  for many centuries (Genesis 25:8)

·        Isaac had been physically dead for many centuries (Genesis 35:29).

·        Jacob had been physically dead for many centuries (Genesis 49:33).

·        However, they were still LIVING in the time of Moses (Exodus 3:6), because God said, “I am” [present tense] the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

·        They were still living in the time of Jesus, because He said “God is” [present tense] the God of the LIVING (Matthew 22:32).

·        They were still living in the time of Jesus, because He said “God is not the God of the dead” (Matthew 22:32). Jesus was not denying that these men had died physically, but He was affirming that they were living as spirits (in Hades, Luke 16:22-31). Even though their physical bodies had returned to the dust, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob were still alive!

Matthew 17:1-3, “… Jesus … was transfigured before them…. And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, talking with Him.”

·        Moses had died many centuries earlier (Deuteronomy 34:5).

·        How could Moses appear at the transfiguration of Jesus if all there was to Moses had ceased to exist? He obviously still existed despite his BODY’S return to the dust!

·        He was still MOSES—he had retained his identity even after his death!

James 2:26, “For as the BODY without the SPIRIT is dead, so faith without works is dead also.”

·        James did NOT say “the spirit without the body is dead”! It is the BODY that is dead when the SPIRIT departs. Man is more than a physical body—he is also spirit, and that survives physical death.

Ecclesiastes 12:7, “Then the DUST will return to the earth as it was, and the SPIRIT will return to God who gave it.”

·        Man’s BODY will return to dust, but his SPIRIT will return to God.

Daniel 7:15, “I, Daniel, was grieved in my SPIRIT within my BODY, and the visions of my head troubled me.”

·        Note that Daniel’s spirit was WITHIN his body, but distinguished from it.

Acts 7:59, “And they stoned Stephen as he was calling on God and saying, ‘Lord Jesus, receive my SPIRIT.’”

·        Stephen died and his body was buried (Acts 7:60; 8:2), but his SPIRIT was in the care of God.

1 Corinthians 2:11, “For what man knows the things of a man except the SPIRIT of the man which is in him? …”

·        A man’s SPIRIT is IN him (if he is alive).

2 Peter 1:13-14, “Yes, I think it is right, as long as I am IN THIS TENT, to stir you up by reminding you, knowing that shortly I must PUT OFF THIS TENT, just as our Lord Jesus Christ showed me.”

·        Peter certainly had an existence in addition to the physical body (“this tent”), for he speaks of being IN his body now, but PUTTING OFF his body later on.

·        “Put off” is translated from apothesis, meaning “a putting off or away, laying aside” (The Analytical Greek Lexicon, page 48).

Revelation 14:13, “Then I heard a voice from heaven saying to me, ‘Write: ‘BLESSED are the dead who die in the Lord from now on….’”

·        The word “blessed” is translated from makarios, meaning “blessed, fortunate, happy, usu. in the sense privileged recipient of divine favor” (A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature by Bauer, Arndt, Gingrich & Danker, page 486); “happy, blessed” (The Analytical Greek Lexicon, page 256).

·        If the dead cease to exist/become extinct/return to dust, how can the dead be “happy”?

·        However, if (as the Bible teaches) they go into Paradise (Luke 23:43) and comfort (Luke 16:25), it is quite easy to understand how they can be happy, fortunate, and blessed.

John 19:30, “So when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, ‘It is finished!’ And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit.”

·        When Jesus “gave up His SPIRIT” (and died), his BODY remained upon the cross for some time before it was removed and placed in Joseph’s tomb.

·        However, Jesus’ SPIRIT still existed after He died, and so did the spirit of the “thief on the cross,” because Jesus said to him, “Today you will be with Me in Paradise” (Luke 23:43). I believe Jesus told him the truth!

Matthew 10:28, “And do not fear those who kill the BODY but cannot kill the SOUL. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both SOUL and BODY in hell.”

·        Someone in this world might kill the BODY, but he cannot kill the SOUL! God can destroy (ruin) BOTH in hell. There is more to man than his physical body.

Hebrews 12:9, “Furthermore, we have had human fathers [“fathers of our FLESH”—ASV, KJV] who corrected us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much more readily be in subjection to the Father of SPIRITS and live?”

·        We receive the physical BODY from our parents, but the SPIRIT comes from God.

2 Corinthians 12:2-3, “I know a MAN in Christ … whether IN THE BODY I do not know, or whether OUT OF THE BODY I do not know, God knows … and I know such a MAN—whether IN THE BODY or OUT OF THE BODY I do not know, God knows.”

·        The inspired apostle knew that a MAN could exist without being in his physical BODY. So there is more to MAN than his physical body!

1 Thessalonians 5:23, “Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole SPIRIT, SOUL, and BODY be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

·        Whatever distinctions one may make in the spirit and the soul in this verse, it is obvious that they are not the body. Therefore, there is more to a PERSON than his BODY!

2 Corinthians 4:16, “… Even though our OUTWARD MAN is perishing, yet the INWARD man is being renewed day by day.”

·        The PHYSICAL BODY (outward man) will eventually die and decay, but the SPIRIT (inward man) will live on.

·        The physical body is one of the “things which are seen” and it is “temporary” (until putting on immortality, 1 Corinthians 15:53); however, man’s spirit is one of the “things which are not seen” and it is “eternal” (cf. 2 Corinthians 4:18).

·        Ephesians 3:16, “That He would grant you … to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the INNER MAN.”

2 Corinthians 5:6-8, “Therefore we are always confident, knowing that while we are at home IN THE BODY we are absent from the Lord…. We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be ABSENT FROM THE BODY and to be PRESENT WITH THE LORD.”

·        How could a person be “absent from the body” and be anywhere, according to the teaching of my opponent?

·        Isn’t it clear, according to Paul, that each person has an existence apart from his physical body? We can be “present with the Lord” though “absent from the body”!

Philippians 1:21-24, “For to me, to live is Christ, and TO DIE IS GAIN. But if I live on IN THE FLESH, this will mean fruit from my labor; yet what I shall choose I cannot tell. For I am hard pressed between the two, having a desire to DEPART AND BE WITH CHRIST, which is FAR BETTER. Nevertheless to REMAIN IN THE FLESH is more needful for you.”

·        Paul said, “To die is gain.” If physical death brings non-existence, then how could that be GAIN for Paul?

·        Paul said, “To depart” (die physically) is “far better.” However, if death results in CESSATION OF EXISTENCE, how could this be “far better”?

·        If death means total extinction/ceasing to exist for the WHOLE PERSON, then death involves “nothingness.” If Paul continued to live, he had the joy of being a Christian (Philippians 4:4) and preaching the gospel that saves souls (Romans 1:16). If Paul died, according to Al’s view, he would cease to exist, become nothing! If Al’s position is true, why was this a difficult choice for Paul??? Surely, to continue to live physically, serving the Lord and preaching the gospel, is “far better” than becoming “nothing”!!!

·        The truth is that, when Paul died physically, he would BE (exist) in a BETTER state (one of comfort in the presence of righteous people, Luke 16:22-25).

The primary point I want people to understand from these passages is that THERE IS MORE TO MAN THAN HIS PHYSICAL BODY!  When the body is dead, the PERSON still exists as a SPIRIT BEING.


Al asks me four (unnumbered) questions. I have numbered them for convenience in replying.

#1. Did Jesus actually provide a true ‘substitutionary’ death for mankind at the cross?

#2. In other words, in the lyrics of a well-known hymn we frequently sing, did Jesus truly ‘pay it all’?

#3. Was the ultimate ‘wage’ of sin ‘paid in full’ by Jesus on behalf of the redeemed who accept that gift of His sacrifice, or will wicked men, who do not accept that gift of life in Him, pay a greater price after the judgment?

#4. If the wages of sin for the unredeemed is everlasting separation from God, with accompanying perpetual torture, did Jesus pay that price?



#1. I was unable to find “substitutionary” in the Bible, so I checked Webster’s New World Dictionary (Third College Edition). There was no definition for “substitutionary”; however, “substitute” was defined as “a person or thing serving or used in place of another” (page 1336). Therefore, I would say, “Yes.” In dying upon the cross, Jesus did what we could not do--He was “a person … serving … in place of another”:

·        Isaiah 53:4-11, “Surely He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows … He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed … And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all … By His knowledge My righteous Servant shall justify many, for He shall bear their iniquities.”

·        Hebrews 9:26, “… but now, once, at the end of the ages, He has appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself.”

#2 & #3a: Yes, when Jesus died upon the cross, He “paid it all” (the FULL PRICE) so that sinners may receive forgiveness of their sins and avoid the penalty for sin--eternal separation from God in hell.  The word of God confirms this fact:

·        Romans 3:23-25, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God set forth to be a propitiation by His blood …”

·        Matthew 26:28, “For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.”

·        Matthew 20:28, “Just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”

·        Ephesians 1:7, “In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, …”

·        Hebrews 9:12, “… with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption.”

·        Revelation 1:5, “… To Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood

#3b (Will wicked men, who do not accept that gift of life in Him, pay a greater price after the judgment?): If by “greater price” you means “greater than what Jesus’ paid,” then “No”!

(1) The PRICE Jesus paid was the offering of a HOLY, JUST, and SINLESS man for all SINNERS:

·        1 Peter 3:18, “For Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust …”

·        Romans 5:8, “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

·        1 Peter 2:21-24, “… Christ also suffered for us … who committed no sin …who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree …”

·        Acts 3:14, “But you denied the Holy One and the Just …”

(2) The PRICE sinners pay is a penalty for THEIR PERSONAL SINS:

·        2 Corinthians 5:10, “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.”

·        Revelation 20:12, “… And the dead were judged according to their works …”

(3) The PRICE Jesus paid was sufficient to obtain salvation for ALL MEN for ETERNITY:

·        1 John 2:2, “And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world.”

·        John 1:29, “… Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!”

·        Hebrews 5:9, “… He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him”

#4: If you are asking whether Jesus was tortured in eternal separation from God, then “No” (cf. Luke 23:43). However, if the final penalty for the wicked is utter extinction forever (as you believe), then Jesus didn’t suffer that either!  Furthermore, if (as you believe) the wicked will receive temporary torment before becoming extinct, Jesus didn’t suffer that either!



1. When “God created man in His own image” (Genesis 1:27), what was made “in the image of God”—the physical body, the spirit, the breath, or something else?

2. If the wages of sin for the unredeemed is “utter extinction forever,” did Jesus pay that price?

3. Do you believe that Jesus’ death upon the cross was the cessation of life for the ENTIRE PERSON, not just a part of him”?

4. Which of the following individuals exist now?

                 __ Adam

                 __ Abraham

                 __ Moses

                 __ Elijah

                 __ Lazarus (Luke 16)

                 __ Paul



In some of my preparations for a concurrent debate with an atheist, I was reading another debate involving a well-known atheist. He commented that “the New Testament does as a matter of fact plainly, emphatically and repeatedly threaten eternal punishment in hell. I would add that the punishment threatened is (or at least includes) being burned, literally being burned in literal fire or something awfully like it…. Now, I don’t mean oxidized, consumed or cremated as indeed happens, rather mercifully, when we are burned … Now, I say this is preached in the New Testament” (Dr. Warren I. Matson, The Warren-Matson Debate on the Existence of God, pp. 38-39). I do not cite Matson’s remark as proof of the truth of my position, but only to indicate how obvious it is, even to an atheist, what the New Testament says about the eternal destiny of the wicked. Matson does not BELIEVE what the New Testament says on this subject, and (sadly) neither does my friend and brother Al Maxey!


Thomas N. Thrasher



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