Bill Weiss on Annihilation

Man will not be annihilated, because God made us in His image (Gen.1:26, 35:18; Ps. 26:9; Is. 38:17; Ec.12:7; Pr. 23:14; Ps.116:8; Ps. 34:22; Job 33:28; 1Kings 17:22; 1Sam .25:29). We will exist forever either in heaven or in hell. Also, if there is no eternal suffering, then why did Jesus come down and die for us? What did He save us from?

Jesus said in Matt. 25:46, “These shall go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into life eternal.” The word for eternal is aionios. Since those in heaven are eternal, so are those in hell. He said similar things in John 5:29 and Mark 16:16, Dan.12:2; Matt.13:30,41,49.

Rev.14:10-11 is so clear. It states, “he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb: and the smoke of their torment ascendeth up forever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night.” (They are in His presence, so they must exist. Also, you have to exist to have no rest day nor night).

Rev. 20:13-14 state that “death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.” How can hell deliver up those which were in them if they do not exist? And why would they be judged if they were simply annihilated? There are many verses on degrees of punishment (Matt.10:15, 16:27, 23:14-15; Luke 12:47; Heb.10:28-29). Why have varying degrees of punishment if all are annihilated? In Matt. 25:46 Jesus said, “eternal punishment.” Even the word “punishment” denotes an existence. How can one be punished if they do not exist?

Matt.13:42, “There shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.” (One must exist to gnash).

Matt.18:8, “…to be cast into everlasting fire.” (Why have everlasting fire?).

Mark 9:43, “…to go into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched.”

John 15:6, “…cast them into the fire, and they are burned.”

Jude 7, “…suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.”

Is.33:14, “…who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings.” (How is one burned “everlasting” if they do not exist?).

Dan.12:2 “some to everlasting life, and some to shame & everlasting contempt. (One would have to exist to experience everlasting shame & contempt).

Is.66:24, “for their worm shall not die, neither shall their fire be quenched. They shall be an abhorring to all flesh.” (One must still exist to see them).

Job15:30, “He shall not depart out of darkness…” (That statement presupposes their existence).

Ps.49:19, “they shall never see light.” (One must still exist to never see light).

Ps.14:9-10, “Hell from beneath is moved for thee to meet thee at thy coming…they shall speak and say unto thee, art thou also become weak as we? (One must still exist to be able to speak).

Ez.32:21, “the strong among the mighty shall speak to him out of the midst of hell.” (One must still exist to speak).

Ps.21:8-9 …”Thou shalt make them as a fiery oven in the time of thine anger.”

Job 18:15, 21, “Brimstone shall be scattered upon his habitation…Surely are the dwellings of the wicked.” (One would have to exist to “dwell” in a place).

Also see 2 Thes.1:9, Luke 3:17; Jude 13; 2 Pet. 2:17; Is. 38:17-18; Mal. 4:1; Jer.20:11; Is. 45:16; Pr. 9:18.

Luke 16 makes it clear that one still exists after death. Some say it was only a parable. However, according to most commentaries and scholars, it was not. No parable ever had a specific name in it. This has three names. Also, Jesus said in verse 25, “And Abraham said…” Notice Jesus is quoting Abraham as saying. If this was a parable then it would not have been Abraham saying. Jesus would have been lying because Abraham would not have been speaking. But even if it was a parable, then tell me what it means? The man said he was in torment in the flame. He also said that if one would repent, they would avoid the place. He was concerned for his brothers and didn’t want them to come there also. So what is the lesson if this was a parable? If people do not go to hell, then Jesus certainly conveyed the opposite with this explanation.