explain this Scripture: "Death and hell were cast into
the lake of fire, this is the second death?"
<ANSWER>--The first death came upon Adam because of sin,
and death has been reigning in the earth since, and men have
died because of inherited sin. Death is spoken of in the Scriptures
as a great enemy. Under the reign of Christ the dead shall return
from the land of the enemy, the tomb, the death condition. (`Jer.
31:15-17`; `John 5:28,29`). All those who have become Christ's
in this life receive their trial now. Those who have had no
opportunity to accept the Lord will be given a trial then, and
if obedient will be rewarded with eternal life on the earth.
The reign of Christ is for the purpose of restoring all that
was lost in Adam (`Acts 3:19-22`) and as the Scriptures declare:
"He must reign till He hath put all enemies under His feet.
The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death" (`1 Cor.
15:25,26`). In the Scripture quoted in your question, "hell"
is from the Greek word <"Hades,"> meaning the
tomb. Death means the result of the curse that came upon Adam.
The words used by our Lord were figurative. The "lake of
fire" is a symbol of complete destruction, here called
the "second death," therefore the second death refers
to that death from which there will be no resurrection.
is meant by the "Second Death" mentioned in the book
<ANSWER>--The first death, the death which came upon the
human family through the disobedience of Father Adam, extended
to every member of the human race. But according to God's providence,
foreknown and fully declared, Christ died for the sins of the
whole world; and in due time every member of Adam's race is
to be recovered from that sin and from its death penalty, which
for six thousand years has been upon the race. In other words,
as Adam brought mankind under the first death penalty, so Christ
will release all mankind from that death penalty and give every
member of the race a full and fair opportunity to attain perfection
and eternal life. Whoever refuses that favor and opportunity--whoever
sins willfully and deliberately against that light, will come
under the sentence of death again; and this time it will not
be Adamic death, but Second Death. And the difference between
the two deaths is that the latter will know no revocation--there
will be no redemption from it and no resurrection.
explain `Rev. 20:10`, particularly the last clause of the verse
which reads: "and shall be tormented day and night for
ever and ever." (E.W.D.)
<ANSWER>--All Bible students recognize that the expressions
of this chapter and verse are highly figurative. Where it is
stated that a "beast and false prophet" are to be
cast into the "lake of fire and brimstone," no reasoning
mind would say that literal beast, or a literal false prophet
were meant; but that these were symbols, and represent false
and beastly systems. And if not an actual beast is meant, so
also with the "lake of fire and brimstone." This lake
would fittingly symbolize absolute destruction, for whatever
is cast into fire and brimstone, the two most destructive agencies
known to mankind, is immediately destroyed and not preserved
in any sense. As stated in the `14th verse`, it is the "second
death"--annihilation. To our understanding, the "devil"
here mentioned is not Satan himself, but is an evil system--a
devilish power. These evil systems--false civil and ecclesiastical
powers--in the end of the Age are to be "tormented day
and night," as long as they last, with financial, social,
and religious difficulties and pains. "Forever and ever"
is from the Greek <aionion> which signifies lasting. The
"torment" will last until these Satanic systems are