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"They Shall Be Ashes"

Many believe that evil people will "burn in hell," alive, forever. The Bible does say that those who are judged by God to be hopelessly evil are going to burn, but not forever. Those cast into the lake of fire (see also Planet On Fire!) will be burned to death, the second death, after they had been resurrected to physical life for judgment. They will be burned to ash on that day (ashes don't burn, either alive, or forever), after which it will be as though they had never existed i.e. "it shall leave them neither root nor branch":

Fire

"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. 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. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire." (Revelation 20:12-15 KJV)

"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. But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall. And ye shall tread down the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I shall do this, saith The Lord of hosts." (Malachi 4:1-3 KJV)

The Holy Bible plainly describes two resurrections and two deaths. There is nothing complicated about how, why and when they happen. All are perfectly and simply logical in purpose and sequence.

1. The First Death: Until Christ Returns, The Dead Are Dead

Everyone that has ever lived and died through all of time, up to the day of Christ's return, is dead. They are in absolute unconsciousness, regardless of whether their bodies are in graves (see What Happens When You Die?) or if their bodies were completely destroyed, such as by cremation (e.g. see What Happened To Tonto?). That is the first death.

"it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment" (Hebrews 9:27 KJV) (see also The End Is Coming Soon)

"For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not any thing" (Ecclesiastes 9:5 KJV)

"For that which befalleth the sons of men befalleth beasts; even one thing befalleth them: as the one dieth, so dieth the other; yea, they have all one breath; so that a man hath no preeminence above a beast: for all is vanity. All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again" (Ecclesiastes 3:19-20 KJV)

2. The First Resurrection Will Occur At Christ's Return

All of those who repented and lived according to God's Word through the ages will be resurrected from the dead, or transformed if alive that day, to spirit beings at Christ's return. Their Judgment Day will be at that point, otherwise they will not be in the first resurrection which will be to spirit (see When Will You Be Judged?). They will rule the world with Christ for the next 1,000 years.

"For this we say unto you by the word of The Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of The Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For The Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God [see also The Feast Of Trumpets]: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, To Meet The Lord In The Air" (1 Thessalonians 4:15-17 KJV)

"This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ [see also The King Of The King Of Kings], and shall reign with Him a thousand years" (Revelation 20:5-6 KJV)

3. The Second Resurrection Will Occur At The End Of The 1,000 Years

The rest of humanity that lived through all of the ages will be resurrected back to physical life (unlike those of the first resurrection who will be resurrected as spirit) at the end of the 1,000 years when they will face their Judgment. Those judged good will be granted eternal life and transformed to spirit just like those who were resurrected 1,000 years earlier at Christ's return.

"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. 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." (Revelation 20:12-13 KJV)

"And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life" (Daniel 12:2 KJV)

4. The Second Death

Those of the second resurrection who are judged evil will be cast into the lake of fire which is the second death. To repeat, there is no "ever burning hell" (or part-time hell - see Purgatory). They will be killed and burned to ash, an eternal death, an absolute oblivion of which there is no return.

"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. 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. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire." (Revelation 20:12-15 KJV)

"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. But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall. And ye shall tread down the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I shall do this, saith The Lord of hosts." (Malachi 4:1-3 KJV)

Fact Finder: What did Jesus Christ say about the "gates of hell"?
See Through The Gates Of Hell


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