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Questions about 2 Thess. 1:6-10
and Reconciliation

Edited for the web

On Fri, 3 Dec 1999, Ps. Jim ------- wrote:

> 1. Please comment on these verses from 2nd Thess. 1:6-10.

"6 Seeing it is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you; 7 And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, 8 In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: 9 Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power; 10 When he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be admired in all them that believe (because our testimony among you was believed) in that day."

Hello Jim,

Thanks for writing. I assume that your major concern with the above passage is the words "eternal destruction" used by this particular translation. The word "eternal" in the version you quote is a translation of the word "aionion" in the Greek and means "age-lasting". The punishment was to be age-lasting, and not to go on without ending as it is commonly translated by many.

Below are some quotes from "A Pocket Cyclopedia" concerning the words Aion, aions, aionian:

The word rendered "everlasting," "eternal," "world" (often) in the New Testament, is some form of aion; that is, "age," "era," "epoch," etc. It never denotes, of itself, endless duration. It is applied, among other things, to the Jewish, Christian, and other future dispensations. "This world" (aion), "the world to come" (aion), mean the Jewish and Christian dispensations, and "eternal," "everlasting" (aionian) mean pertaining to those dispensations; that is, aion--lasting, or pertaining to the aion referred to. As "daily" cannot mean endless because its limit is defined by the noun "day," whence it is derived, so aionian cannot mean everlasting, inasmuch as no aion is without end. The worst possible rendering of aionian is everlasting. Every form of the word must denote a limited period, unless some term is associated with it to extend its meaning, as the aionian God. In that case the word is qualified by the noun, as the word "great" would be.

> 2. Do you believe that in the 2nd resurrction(Rev 20)everyone will be reconciled to God?

I believe, according to the Bible, that everyone will be eventually reconciled to God. That is the purpose of the eons (aions, ages), some reconciled now (in this age or eon), some at his coming (in that age or eon), and some at the end (at the consummation of the ages or eons).

Notice what is said in this passage from Philippians 2:9-11:
(My quotations are from the World English Bible)

"Therefore God also highly exalted him, and gave to him the name which is above every name; that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, those on earth, and those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."

Every knee and every tongue! "No one can say, 'Jesus is Lord,' but by the Holy Spirit" (1 Cor. 12:3).

Also, notice this passage from 1 Tim. 4:10-11,

"For to this end we both labor and suffer reproach, because we have set our trust in the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of those who believe. Command and teach these things."

God is the SAVIOR OF ALL MEN, and this, we are to command and teach!

Also, read the passage from 1 Cor. 15:20-28 in which I have inserted comments in brackets:

"But now Christ has been raised from the dead. He became the first fruits of those who are asleep. For since death came by man, the resurrection of the dead also came by man. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive."

[note the "all" in the passage.]

"But each in his own order: Christ the first fruits, then those who are Christ's, at his coming. Then the end comes, when he will deliver up the Kingdom to God, even the Father; when he will have abolished all rule and all authority and power."

[note the orders in the resurrection in the passage above: (1) Christ the first fruits, (2) those who are his at his coming, (3) the end. Note also, below, what happens at "the end."]

"For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy that will be abolished is death. For, 'He put all things in subjection under his feet.' But when he says, 'All things are put in subjection,' it is evident that he is excepted who subjected all things to him. When all things have been subjected to him, then the Son will also himself be subjected to him who subjected all things to him, that God may be all in all."

God ALL in ALL!

This has been a fairly brief answer to your questions, but I will be happy to help you with more info if desired.

In Christ,
Bro. Ken