What are your thoughts on this?
Does the human spirit have no personality? Though Samuel was no soul, only a spirit when he was called up by the witch, he had his own personality. Moses when he spoke with Yahushua before the disciples was a spirit only but his own personality was intact. The rich man and Lazarus both showed their individual personalities. Yahushua Himself preached to "spirits in prison" while apart from flesh. The spirits of the nephilim who wander the earth as demons had a personality in their flesh, and were souls but now are not. still they retain the traits of a personality when they involve themselves in the lives of living humans.
Where is the personality if it is not with the spirit? Has the Set Apart Ruach no personality? Man is made after His image and so a man's spirit was designed like His (though is now fallen).
Charlene i think what you are questioning and proposing both come from an earnest compassion for the lost, and a sincere desire to see them saved in Yahushua.
i imagine most who have repented and accepted Messiah have, at some point, questioned to learn and understand where mercy fits in to 'torment forever'.. at times, when people lose loved ones, they seek this answer,
personally, my understanding came from realizing what sin is. transgression of His law yes, but also, sin is completely unholy - whereas Yahuwah is completely holy. sin cannot abide with Him - and has no place in a perfect eternity.
and it stands to reason that 'in eternity it's always now' - an existence unconstrained by time. in eternity 'it's always now'.. something to consider maybe when thinking about final judgment.
we have to remember that only Yahuwah knows who will and won't repent, and when they each will, if ever. for those who will never repent, there is only sin, and that sin cannot exist in a holy eternity.
i remember the first time i read how He even removes some evil people from life in order to spare them a worse place in hell.. that amazed me because He has mercy even for His 'eternal enemies'.
and realizing that, by nature, Yahuwah gives every fallen individual the absolute best opportunity to accept salvation in Yahushua - this helped a lot.. knowing that no one is getting short-changed on chances for redemption.
He knows all of the various contingencies and choices for each of us, for every aspect of our lives, including our salvation.. and everyone gets one equal chance. (this is why i call Yahushua 'the great equalizer').
believers trust that everything we need to know about this earthly test, about life, death and afterlife is contained in the revealed Word of scripture. we know that our Creator is loving and not just 'Just' but also 'Merciful'.. if it were just justice, none of us would be saved.
the laws of physics established by our Creator are also involved here, and are something to consider.. the actual physical properties of 'the lake of fire' could be more involved than we can really imagine with our earthly minds.. we can, though, rest assured that even though it is a literal place, our Creator is in control, and is loving, and is totally capable of restraining sin in the best way possible.
cause and effect also need to be considered.. for an individual to 'cease to exist' would mean a lot of changes would it not.. our Creator is the Elohim of order, not chaos. Reason is established in Him, and i imagine that changing reality after the fact would effect a different reality, and thus would negate the lives we all led in that singular reality in which we accepted Yahushua.
as for spirits having individual personalities - i can tell you from personal experience that they absolutely do. i used to think of Satan as having a personality, but his unholy host as being more of a mindless army.. and i thought of YHWH as having a personality, but never considered that his holy host had personalities.. it just hadn't ever dawned on me.
then i became involved in the occult and demon worship and found out first hand that spirits do indeed have personalities.. some more than others, actually, and this may be a topic for a different discussion, but i can tell you that just like our Creator has a personality (which we see in scripture), and just like the Devil has a personality (which we also see in scripture) - each one of the spirit beings He created with free will has a personality.. not just humans, but all His children, whether they have chosen Him or refused Him.
the spirit is where our individuality is found. Yahushua, after dying a physical death, was resurrected, and retained His personality, though His flesh had been glorified. we are going to experience that same thing, we will shed the flesh, but our spirits will be resurrected in glorified bodies, just as His.
a note about 'fear' - 'of some have compassion, making a distinction, and others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire..' Jude 23,24
Peace in Yahushua
Yes, compassion for the lost, but also zeal for my Elohim. I would accept the traditional theory of everlasting torment, hard as it may be, if i were not convinced by Scripture otherwise. it is not misplaced sympathy, but rather deepening relational understanding of YHVH in the Word and in personal experience. Yes He does have a personality and each time i have encountered Him...been blessed by His presence I strongly feel two things: from myself, complete inadequacy and awe and from Him, COMPLETE AND ENVELOPING LOVE AND PEACE. "God is not willing that any should perish..." again, just look up the word. perish: to become destroyed or ruined : cease to exist, Merriam Webster. Here is a link that breaks down the Greek word apollumi which is translated as "perish" http://www.growthingod.org.uk/olethros.htm.
Yes we are to pull some back from the fire, but not fires of everlasting torment but of destruction. We wouldn't run into a burning building to rescue someone because we fear that they will be stuck in there burning forever, no. We rescue them so that they will not die. The imperative and urgency is between life and death. It is so important to the Father that we not die becaue we are His creation, precious to HIm and He wants better that that for us. He wants us to LIVE!!! "Oh that you would choose Life..." as any parent would want for their child or husband for wife. "And the spirit shall return to God who gave it..."Ecclesiastes 12:7 The body and the soul are perishable. And again if this was not so, then Yeshua would not have said as muchThe soul of man, the personal record, is what is destroyed. How will we be resurrected? Is it not that YHVH will call us to remberance? Is it not that His SPIRIT will cause us to live? It is His Spirit. Not ours. As for the fallen angels, as I said, do not know...