|Easton's Bible Dictionary|
The miserable fate of the wicked in hell (Matthew 25:46; Mark 3:29; Hebrews 6:2; 2 Thessalonians 1:9; Matthew 18:8; 25:41; Jude 1:7). The Scripture as clearly teaches the unending duration of the penal sufferings of the lost as the "everlasting life," the "eternal life" of the righteous. The same Greek words in the New Testament (aion, aionios, aidios) are used to express (1) the eternal existence of God (1 Timothy 1:17; Romans 1:20; 16:26); (2) of Christ (Revelation 1:18); (3) of the Holy Ghost (Hebrews 9:14); and (4) the eternal duration of the sufferings of the lost (Matthew 25:46; Jude 1:6).
Their condition after casting off the mortal body is spoken of in these expressive words: "Fire that shall not be quenched" (Mark 9:45, 46), "fire unquenchable" (Luke 3:17), "the worm that never dies," the "bottomless pit" (Revelation 9:1), "the smoke of their torment ascending up for ever and ever" (Revelation 14:10, 11).
The idea that the "second death" (Revelation 20:14) is in the case of the wicked their absolute destruction, their annihilation, has not the slightest support from Scripture, which always represents their future as one of conscious suffering enduring for ever.
The supposition that God will ultimately secure the repentance and restoration of all sinners is equally unscriptural. There is not the slightest trace in all the Scriptures of any such restoration. Sufferings of themselves have no tendency to purify the soul from sin or impart spiritual life. The atoning death of Christ and the sanctifying power of the Holy Spirit are the only means of divine appointment for bringing men to repentance. Now in the case of them that perish these means have been rejected, and "there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins" (Hebrews 10:26, 27).
This expression occurs in the Old Testament only in Dan. 12:2 (R.V., "everlasting life").
It occurs frequently in the New Testament (Matthew 7:14; 18:8, 9; Luke 10:28; Comp. 18:18). It comprises the whole future of the redeemed (Luke 16:9), and is opposed to "eternal punishment" (Matthew 19:29; 25:46). It is the final reward and glory into which the children of God enter (1 Timothy 6:12, 19; Romans 6:22; Galatians 6:8; 1 Timothy 1:16; Romans 5:21); their Sabbath of rest (Hebrews 4:9; Comp. 12:22).
The newness of life which the believer derives from Christ (Romans 6:4) is the very essence of salvation, and hence the life of glory or the eternal life must also be theirs (Romans 6:8; 2 Timothy 2:11, 12; Romans 5:17, 21; 8:30; Ephesians 2:5, 6). It is the "gift of God in Jesus Christ our Lord" (Romans 6:23). The life the faithful have here on earth (John 3:36; 5:24; 6:47, 53-58) is inseparably connected with the eternal life beyond, the endless life of the future, the happy future of the saints in heaven (Matthew 19:16, 29; 25:46).
Noah Webster's Dictionary
1. (a.) Without beginning or end of existence; always existing.
2. (a.) Without end of existence or duration; everlasting; endless; immortal.
3. (a.) Continued without intermission; perpetual; ceaseless; constant.
4. (a.) Existing at all times without change; immutable.
5. (a.) Exceedingly great or bad; -- used as a strong intensive.
6. (n.) One of the appellations of God.
7. (n.) That which is endless and immortal.
Int. Standard Bible Encyclopedia
e-tur'-nal (`olam; aionios, from aion):
The word "eternal" is of very varying import, both in the Scriptures and out of them.
In the Old Testament, the Hebrew word `olam is used for "eternity," sometimes in the sense of unlimited duration, sometimes in the sense of a cycle or an age, and sometimes, in later Hebrew, in the signification of world. The Hebrew `olam has, for its proper New Testament equivalent, aion, as signifying either time of particular duration, or the unending duration of time in general. Only, the Hebrew term primarily signified unlimited time, and only in a secondary sense represented a definite or specific period. Both the Hebrew and the Greek terms signify the world itself, as it moves in time.
2. Aion, Aionios:
In the New Testament, aion and aionios are often used with the meaning "eternal," in the predominant sense of futurity. The word aion primarily signifies time, in the sense of age or generation; it also comes to denote all that exists under time-conditions; and, finally, superimposed upon the temporal is an ethical use, relative to the world's course. Thus aion may be said to mean the subtle informing spirit of the world or cosmos-the totality of things. By Plato, in his Timaeus, aion was used of the eternal Being, whose counterpart, in the sense-world, is Time. To Aristotle, in speaking of the world, aion is the ultimate principle which, in itself, sums up all existence. In the New Testament, aion is found combined with prepositions in nearly three score and ten instances, where the idea of unlimited duration appears to be meant. This is the usual method of expressing eternity in the Septuagint also. The aionios of 2 Corinthians 4:18 must be eternal, in a temporal use or reference, else the antithesis would be gone.
In Romans 1:20 the word aidios is used of Divine action and rendered in the King James Version "eternal" (the Revised Version (British and American) "everlasting"), the only other place in the New Testament where the word occurs being Jude 1:6, where the rendering is "everlasting," which accords with classical usage. But the presence of the idea of eternal in these passages does not impair the fact that aion and aionios are, in their natural and obvious connotation, the usual New Testament words for expressing the idea of eternal, and this holds strikingly true of the Septuagint usage also. For, from the idea of aeonian life, there is no reason to suppose the notion of duration excluded. The word aionios is sometimes used in the futurist signification, but often also, in the New Testament, it is concerned rather with the quality, than with the quantity or duration, of life. By the continual attachment of aionios to life, in this conception of the spiritual or Divine life in man, the aeonian conception was saved from becoming sterile.
4. Enlargement of Idea:
In the use of aion and aionios there is evidenced a certain enlarging or advancing import till they come so to express the high and complex fact of the Divine life in man. In Greek, aiones signifies ages, or periods or dispensations. The aiones of Hebrews 1:2, and 11:3, is, however, to be taken as used in the concrete sense of "the worlds," and not "the ages," the world so taken meaning the totality of things in their course or flow.
5. Eternal Life:
Our Lord decisively set the element of time in abeyance, and took His stand upon the fact and quality of life-life endless by its own nature. Of that eternal life He is Himself the guarantee-"Because I live, ye shall live also" (John 14:19). Therefore said Augustine, "Join thyself to the eternal God, and thou wilt be eternal."
Eternal (166 Occurrences)
Matthew 18:8 If your hand or your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off, and cast it from you. It is better for you to enter into life maimed or crippled, rather than having two hands or two feet to be cast into the eternal fire. (WEB ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV NIV)
Matthew 19:16 Behold, one came to him and said, "Good teacher, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?" (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Matthew 19:29 Everyone who has left houses, or brothers, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name's sake, will receive one hundred times, and will inherit eternal life. (WEB ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV NIV)
Matthew 25:41 Then he will say also to those on the left hand,'Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire which is prepared for the devil and his angels; (WEB ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV NIV)
Matthew 25:46 These will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life." (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Mark 3:29 but whoever may blaspheme against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin" (WEB KJV ASV WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Mark 9:43 And if your hand is a cause of trouble to you, let it be cut off; it is better for you to go into life with one hand than to have two hands and go into hell, into the eternal fire. (BBE)
Mark 10:17 As he was going out into the way, one ran to him, knelt before him, and asked him, "Good Teacher, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?" (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Mark 10:30 but he will receive one hundred times more now in this time, houses, brothers, sisters, mothers, children, and land, with persecutions; and in the age to come eternal life. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Mark 16:20 They went out, and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word by the signs that followed. Amen. (See NAS)
Luke 10:25 Behold, a certain lawyer stood up and tested him, saying, "Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?" (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Luke 16:9 I tell you, make for yourselves friends by means of unrighteous mammon, so that when you fail, they may receive you into the eternal tents. (WEB ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV NIV)
Luke 18:18 A certain ruler asked him, saying, "Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?" (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Luke 18:30 who will not receive many times more in this time, and in the world to come, eternal life." (WEB ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV NIV)
John 3:15 that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life. (WEB ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV NIV)
John 3:36 One who believes in the Son has eternal life, but one who disobeys the Son won't see life, but the wrath of God remains on him." (WEB ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV NIV)
John 4:14 but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never thirst again; but the water that I will give him will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life." (WEB ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV NIV)
John 4:36 He who reaps receives wages, and gathers fruit to eternal life; that both he who sows and he who reaps may rejoice together. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
John 5:24 "Most certainly I tell you, he who hears my word, and believes him who sent me, has eternal life, and doesn't come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life. (WEB ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV NIV)
John 5:39 "You search the Scriptures, because you think that in them you have eternal life; and these are they which testify about me. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
John 6:27 Don't work for the food which perishes, but for the food which remains to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you. For God the Father has sealed him." (WEB ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV NIV)
John 6:40 This is the will of the one who sent me, that everyone who sees the Son, and believes in him, should have eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day." (WEB ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV NIV)
John 6:47 Most certainly, I tell you, he who believes in me has eternal life. (WEB ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV)
John 6:54 He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
John 6:68 Simon Peter answered him, "Lord, to whom would we go? You have the words of eternal life. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
John 10:28 I give eternal life to them. They will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
John 12:25 He who loves his life will lose it. He who hates his life in this world will keep it to eternal life. (WEB KJV ASV DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
John 12:50 I know that his commandment is eternal life. The things therefore which I speak, even as the Father has said to me, so I speak." (WEB ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV NIV)
John 17:2 even as you gave him authority over all flesh, he will give eternal life to all whom you have given him. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
John 17:3 This is eternal life, that they should know you, the only true God, and him whom you sent, Jesus Christ. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Acts 13:46 Paul and Barnabas spoke out boldly, and said, "It was necessary that God's word should be spoken to you first. Since indeed you thrust it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of eternal life, behold, we turn to the Gentiles. (WEB ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV NIV)
Acts 13:48 As the Gentiles heard this, they were glad, and glorified the word of God. As many as were appointed to eternal life believed. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Romans 1:20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: (KJV WEY BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
Romans 1:23 And by them the glory of the eternal God was changed and made into the image of man who is not eternal, and of birds and beasts and things which go on the earth. (BBE)
Romans 2:7 to those who by patience in well-doing seek for glory, honor, and incorruptibility, eternal life; (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Romans 5:21 that as sin reigned in death, even so grace might reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Romans 6:22 But now, being made free from sin, and having become servants of God, you have your fruit of sanctification, and the result of eternal life. (WEB ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV NIV)
Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Romans 14:23 But he who doubts is condemned if he eats, because it isn't of faith; and whatever is not of faith is sin. (24) Now to him who is able to establish you according to my Good News and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery which has been kept secret through long ages, (25) but now is revealed, and by the Scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the eternal God, is made known for obedience of faith to all the nations; (26) to the only wise God, through Jesus Christ, to whom be the glory forever! Amen. (WEB)
Romans 16:25 Now to him that is able to establish you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery which hath been kept in silence through times eternal, (ASV BBE)
Romans 16:26 but now is manifested, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the eternal God, is made known unto all the nations unto obedience of faith: (ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV NIV)
1 Corinthians 9:25 And every man who takes part in the sports has self-control in all things. Now they do it to get a crown which is of this world, but we for an eternal crown. (BBE)
1 Corinthians 15:53 For this body which comes to destruction will be made free from the power of death, and the man who is under the power of death will put on eternal life. (BBE)
2 Corinthians 3:11 For if the order which was for a time had its glory, much more will the eternal order have its glory. (BBE)
2 Corinthians 4:17 For our light affliction, which is for the moment, works for us more and more exceedingly an eternal weight of glory; (WEB KJV WEY ASV DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
2 Corinthians 4:18 while we don't look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal. (WEB KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
2 Corinthians 5:1 For we know that if the earthly house of our tent is dissolved, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal, in the heavens. (WEB KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Galatians 6:8 For he who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption. But he who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. (WEB ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV NIV)
Ephesians 3:11 according to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord; (WEB KJV WEY ASV BBE WBS NAS RSV NIV)
2 Thessalonians 1:9 who will pay the penalty: eternal destruction from the face of the Lord and from the glory of his might, (WEB WEY ASV BBE NAS RSV)
2 Thessalonians 2:16 Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God our Father, who loved us and gave us eternal comfort and good hope through grace, (WEB WEY ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV NIV)
1 Timothy 1:16 However, for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first, Jesus Christ might display all his patience, for an example of those who were going to believe in him for eternal life. (WEB ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV NIV)
1 Timothy 1:17 Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, to God who alone is wise, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen. (WEB KJV ASV BBE WBS NAS NIV)
1 Timothy 6:12 Fight the good fight of faith. Lay hold of the eternal life to which you were called, and you confessed the good confession in the sight of many witnesses. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
1 Timothy 6:15 Which at the right time he will make clear, who is the eternal and only Ruler, King of kings, and Lord of lords; (BBE)
1 Timothy 6:16 who alone has immortality, dwelling in unapproachable light; whom no man has seen, nor can see: to whom be honor and eternal power. Amen. (WEB WEY ASV DBY NAS RSV)
1 Timothy 6:19 laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold of eternal life. (WEB KJV WBS)
2 Timothy 1:9 who saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given to us in Christ Jesus before times eternal, (WEB ASV BBE)
2 Timothy 2:10 Therefore I endure all things for the chosen ones' sake, that they also may obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory. (WEB KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Titus 1:2 in hope of eternal life, which God, who can't lie, promised before time began; (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Titus 3:7 that, being justified by his grace, we might be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Hebrews 5:9 Having been made perfect, he became to all of those who obey him the author of eternal salvation, (WEB KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Hebrews 6:2 of the teaching of baptisms, of laying on of hands, of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment. (WEB KJV ASV DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Hebrews 9:12 nor yet through the blood of goats and calves, but through his own blood, entered in once for all into the Holy Place, having obtained eternal redemption. (WEB KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Hebrews 9:14 how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without blemish to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? (WEB KJV WEY ASV DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Hebrews 9:15 For this reason he is the mediator of a new covenant, since a death has occurred for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first covenant, that those who have been called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance. (WEB KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Hebrews 13:20 Now may the God of peace, who brought again from the dead the great shepherd of the sheep with the blood of an eternal covenant, our Lord Jesus, (WEB WEY ASV BBE DBY NAS RSV NIV)
1 Peter 1:23 Because you have had a new birth, not from the seed of man, but from eternal seed, through the word of a living and unchanging God. (BBE)
1 Peter 1:25 But the word of the Lord is eternal. And this is the word of the good news which was given to you. (BBE)
1 Peter 5:4 And at the coming of the chief Keeper of the sheep, you will be given the eternal crown of glory. (BBE)
1 Peter 5:10 But may the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a little while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. (WEB KJV WEY ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
2 Peter 1:11 For thus you will be richly supplied with the entrance into the eternal Kingdom of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. (WEB WEY ASV BBE NAS RSV NIV)
2 Peter 2:4 For if God did not have pity for the angels who did evil, but sent them down into hell, to be kept in chains of eternal night till they were judged; (BBE)
2 Peter 2:17 These are fountains without water, and mists before a driving storm; for whom the eternal night is kept in store. (BBE)
1 John 1:2 (and the life was revealed, and we have seen, and testify, and declare to you the life, the eternal life, which was with the Father, and was revealed to us); (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
1 John 2:25 This is the promise which he promised us, the eternal life. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
1 John 3:15 Whoever hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life remaining in him. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
1 John 5:11 The testimony is this, that God gave to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
1 John 5:13 These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
1 John 5:20 We know that the Son of God has come, and has given us an understanding, that we know him who is true, and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Jude 1:6 And the angels who did not keep to their kingdom but went out from the place which was theirs, he has put in eternal chains and in dark night till the great day of the judging. (BBE DBY NAS RSV)
Jude 1:7 Even as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities around them, having, in the same way as these, given themselves over to sexual immorality and gone after strange flesh, are set forth as an example, suffering the punishment of eternal fire. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Jude 1:21 Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to eternal life. (WEB KJV ASV BBE DBY WBS NAS RSV NIV)
Revelation 14:6 I saw an angel flying in mid heaven, having an eternal Good News to proclaim to those who dwell on the earth, and to every nation, tribe, language, and people. (WEB ASV BBE NAS RSV NIV)
Revelation 15:3 And they give the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and full of wonder are your works, O Lord God, Ruler of all; true and full of righteousness are your ways, eternal King. (BBE)
Genesis 9:16 And the bow will be in the cloud, and looking on it, I will keep in mind the eternal agreement between God and every living thing on the earth. (BBE)
Genesis 17:7 And I will make between me and you and your seed after you through all generations, an eternal agreement to be a God to you and to your seed after you. (BBE)
Genesis 17:8 And to you and to your seed after you, I will give the land in which you are living, all the land of Canaan for an eternal heritage; and I will be their God. (BBE)
Genesis 21:33 And Abraham, after planting a holy tree in Beer-sheba, gave worship to the name of the Lord, the Eternal God. (BBE DBY NIV)
Genesis 49:26 Blessings of sons, old and young, to the father: blessings of the oldest mountains and the fruit of the eternal hills: let them come on the head of Joseph, on the crown of him who was separate from his brothers. (BBE RSV)
Exodus 31:16 And the children of Israel are to keep the Sabbath holy, from generation to generation, by an eternal agreement. (BBE)
Deuteronomy 11:21 So that your days, and the days of your children, may be long in the land which the Lord by his oath to your fathers said he would give them, like the days of the eternal heavens. (BBE)
Deuteronomy 33:15 And the chief things of the oldest mountains, and the good things of the eternal hills, (BBE)
Deuteronomy 33:27 The eternal God is your dwelling place. Underneath are the everlasting arms. He thrust out the enemy from before you, and said,'Destroy!' (WEB KJV JPS ASV BBE DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV NIV)
2 Samuel 23:5 For is not my house so with God? For he has made with me an eternal agreement, ordered in all things and certain: as for all my salvation and all my desire, will he not give it increase? (BBE)
1 Kings 10:9 May the Lord your God be praised, whose pleasure it was to put you on the seat of the kingdom of Israel; because the Lord's love for Israel is eternal, he has made you king, to be their judge in righteousness. (BBE NIV)
1 Chronicles 16:17 And he gave it to Jacob for a law, and to Israel for an eternal agreement; (BBE)
Ezra 3:11 And they gave praise to the Lord, answering one another in their songs and saying, For he is good, for his mercy to Israel is eternal. And all the people gave a great cry of joy, when they gave praise to the Lord, because the base of the Lord's house was put in place. (BBE)
Psalms 16:11 You will make clear to me the way of life; where you are joy is complete; in your right hand there are pleasures for ever and ever. (See NIV)