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The Tale Of The Castaways
The New Testament Greek word (see also Translation Of Translations) pronounced ad-ok-ee-mos means not approved and/or rejected. It is variously translated in the King James Version as "castaway" (in both a noun and verb connotation), "rejected" or "reprobate."
In this example, the apostle Paul (see Paul's Blindness Lesson and Was Paul Among Them?; also Is Your Religion Your Religion? and What's Your Angle?) spoke of a "castaway" as someone who doesn't win because they didn't prepare themselves to/and enter into the required effort.
"9:23 And this I do for the gospel's sake [see The Gospel of The Kingdom of God], that I might be partaker thereof with you. 9:24 Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. 9:25 And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. 9:26 I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air: 9:27 But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway." (1 Corinthians 9:23-27 KJV)
What "race" was Paul talking about? Who were examples of Christian (i.e. "that Rock was Christ") "castaways"? He continued on to finish the teaching:
"10:1 Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; 10:2 And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea [see The Night Crossing and Why Through The Sea?]; 10:3 And did all eat the same spiritual meat; 10:4 And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ [see 'The God Of The Old Testament' and 'Before Abraham Was, I AM' also Crossing Sinai]. 10:5 But with many of them God was not well pleased: for they were overthrown in the wilderness.
"Cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth"
A "tale" is often now regarded as another word for a lie e.g. "a tall tale." But the original meaning of the English word simply meant to count; the word "tally" is the same as "tale." The King James Version uses "tale" both ways - in these examples meaning an accounting, or a count (notice that "accounting" means "a counting").
"5:18 Go therefore now, and work; for there shall no straw be given you, yet shall ye deliver the tale of bricks." (Exodus 5:18 KJV)
In contrast to those who will be "accounted worthy" of salvation ("20:35 But they which shall be accounted worthy to obtain that world, and the resurrection from the dead" Luke 20:35 KJV), what is it that will cause some to be "cast away" ("9:25 For what is a man advantaged, if he gain the whole world, and lose himself, or be cast away?" Luke 9:25 KJV)? The answer is found in the same Greek word, where it is also translated as "reprobate" (which means "refusing what is considered right and good").
"1:28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; 1:29 Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, 1:30 Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 1:31 Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: 1:32 Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them." (Romans 1:28-32 KJV)
It takes time to grow in grace and knowledge (see Growing In The Grace And Knowledge), after the Holy Spirit makes it possible. Perhaps the reason that the "end time" (see How Long Will 'The End Time' Last?) is going to be so uniquely terrible is that the calling of true Christians will end at least a few years before Christ's return, in order to give them sufficient time to repent, or not (see When Will You Be Judged? and Could Christ Return Tonight?). The rest will be called later, but in the mean time, the world is going to run wild. Satan is going to find it extra easy to deceive for that short time.
"3:1 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. 3:2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, 3:3 Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, 3:4 Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; 3:5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.
For those who refused to repent, after they have had the means and opportunity to do so, they are going to be cast away, not on an island in the sea, but in a flood of fire in which there will be no escape (see also The Floods Brought By Christ).
"25:30 And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Fact Finder: (a) Is there "an ever burning hell" coming? Or does the Word of God say that all of those who refuse to repent are simply going to be incinerated into oblivion? (b) What does "through the gates of hell" mean in the Bible?