Pickle Publishing "Biblical Doctrine of Hell"
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A Response to the Video:
Seventh-day Adventism, the Spirit Behind the Church

by Bob Pickle

Answers to Questions Raised by:
Mark Martin, Sydney Cleveland
Dale Ratzlaff, The White Lie
. . . and

Discern Fact from Fiction

Salvation, Cont.; Conditional Immortality

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#160: "Another thing that people might not be aware of is that Seventh-day Adventists do not teach the biblical doctrine of hell."—Mark Martin.

#160: They don't teach the biblical doctrine of hell. Actually, they do, and always have.

Adventists, unlike Jehovah's Witnesses, believe in taking the Bible literally when it says that hell will be a fire.

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. . . . 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. (Mal. 4:1-3)

They take this passage just as it reads. There will be a fire that burns up the wicked.

For evildoers shall be cut off: but those that wait upon the LORD, they shall inherit the earth. For yet a little while, and the wicked shall not be: yea, thou shalt diligently consider his place, and it shall not be. But the meek shall inherit the earth . . . .

But the wicked shall perish, and the enemies of the LORD shall be as the fat of lambs: they shall consume; into smoke shall they consume away. (Ps. 37:9-11, 20)

So while the redeemed will inherit the earth, the wicked will consume into smoke.

"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life" (John 3:16). Those who believe in Christ have eternal life. Those who do not will perish in hell's fire.

Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil. (Heb. 2:14)

And how will Jesus destroy the devil? Regarding the end of Satan, the "covering cherub" that had been in "Eden," Ezekiel says:

Therefore will I bring forth a fire from the midst of thee, it shall devour thee, and I will bring thee to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that [p. 109] behold thee. . . . thou shalt be a terror, and never shalt thou be any more. (Ezek. 28:18, 19)

Seventh-day Adventists do indeed believe these simple Bible verses. The question is, does Mr. Martin?

When it's all over, "God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away" (Rev. 20:4).

If the wicked did have eternal life in hell fire, even though they never accepted Christ, and if they were never burned up, though the Bible says they will be, how could this verse be true? Sorrow, crying, and pain would continue forever instead of being "no more."

The verses just cited are but a small sampling. Of the 265 verses in the paper, "Immortality: Conditional or Innate?," 148 verses from 88 chapters from 27 biblical books deal with hell. Check it out for yourself at http://www.pickle-publishing.com/papers.

Under "Point 78" and "Point 78a" in the documentation package is a tract by MacGregor Ministries on hell. In its first paragraphs it indicates that Adventists do not think that hell is hot. This of course is not true. Adventists believe that hell will be so hot, it will burn up the entire earth, just like the Bible says:

But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. (2 Pet. 3:10)

The MacGregor Ministries tract makes no attempt to deal with any of the 148 verses of Scripture that declare that "the wages of sin is death" rather than eternal life in hell. It does however make this statement: "When we really believe the word of God as it is written, and don't try to 'figuratize' or 'spiritualize' it away as the cults do . . . ." Thus, by MacGregor Ministries' own admission, Seventh-day Adventism is not a cult. Adventists do not spiritualize the Word of God away when it says that Satan and the wicked will be "consumed," "destroyed," "turned into ashes," "perish," and "never be any more."

On the other hand, since MacGregor Ministries does not take these simple Bible verses literally, is it calling itself a cult? If so, such a conclusion is unwarranted. Just because MacGregor Ministries spiritualizes away what the Bible says about hell, that in itself doesn't make it a cult.

Speaking of hell, what sin is the only one mentioned in all three of Revelation's lists describing those who will end up in the lake of fire?

But . . . all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death. (Rev. 21:7, 8)

And there shall in no wise enter into [the New Jerusalem] any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb's book of life. (Rev. 21:27)

For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie. (Rev. 22:15)

Since lying is the only sin included in all three lists, it would be well for the contributors to the video to consider the following: It is indisputable that this video, whether intentionally or not, contains a number of false statements. In light of the fact that lying can exclude people from the blessings of eternal life and send them to hell, why not play it safe? The best course is to repent, confess, and make things right as far as possible. The Lord is merciful and He will pardon, for Jesus died and shed His blood for us. We have the sure promise of His Word that every sin repented of will be forgiven.

A Response to the Video

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