1. Freda Smy says:

    My wife and I have been reading your blog, we are finding them really refreshing actually! This is the first time I have commented though …
    ***”I wonder if, when the kingdom comes in all its fullness, there will be no inside, or no outside?”***

    Rev 22:15 Outside are the dogs and the sorcerers and the immoral persons and the murderers and the idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices lying. (New American Standard Bible )
    You have spoken about the upside down kingdom well my comment is that because we have been persecuted etc, etc. the Lord tells us to not get even with such people and take courage because ‘blessed are we…” and to leave room for Him to deal (wrath)with these people in His time ….. according to my understanding this surely means that “they” we be left on the outside???

  2. Matt Hyam says:

    It is certainly true that we in the West do not really know what it is like to be persecuted – I certainly do not.

    However, if you read on from the passage you have referred to you see that from within the city, who’s gates will never be shut (Rev 21:25) the Spirit and the bride say, “come…” Who could they be speaking to other than the ones outside, who, as we read earlier, have been thrown into the lake of fire (20:15) and apparently had come through it???

    I cannot imagine that this was a pleasant experience in the least. The much quoted passage in Matthew 25 talks about “eternal punishment”. The Greek word for eternal is “aoinios” and means “of the Age” and the Greek word used here for punishment is “kolasis” which does not mean punishment at all (that would be timoreo). Kolasis, according to ancient sources, was always for the benefit of the recipient, and not the satisfaction of the one giving it out (which is what timoreo is). The implication is that there are consequences and there is a reckoning but it is about discipline and purification not punishment.

    Can we hope this? Can we allow ourselves to believe that God’s mercy really does NEVER come to an end? Will he truly restore ALL things to himself?

    I think that my hope (along with most of the Greek Early church fathers) is that he can and will… but I could be wrong.

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