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To this I answer, that no temporal miseries since the world began, or ever shall be, could equal them in severity, and no place known to a Jew, could be more fitly chosen by the prophet, as an emblem to represent them.

6th, The prophet adds, that “all the evil which the Lord had spoken he would bring upon them.” The following words of the apostle, i Thess. ii. 16, sufficiently explain this,_" for the wrath is come, or coming upon them to the uttermost.”—And the words of our Lord, quoted above," for these be the days of vengeance, that all things that are written may be fulfilled.” Luke xxi. 22. This part of the prediction, compared with these passages, show, that the prophet did refer to the dreadful punishment which God brought upon the Jewish nation at the end of the world, or age, and described, Matth. xxiv. For all the evil which the Lord had spoken,” he did not bring upon them, until the destruction of their city and temple by the

Roman army

Such are the principal things contained in this prophesy. of Jeremiah. It is then put beyond all fair debate, that Gehenna was made an emblem of punishment to the Jews; and nothing but ignorance of their own Scriptures, could prevent their fully knowing this. It was made an emblem of temporal punishment, and a very striking emblem indeed. But that it was made an emblem of eternal punishment to the Jews, or any of the human race, does not appear from this prophesy of Jeremiah, or any other part of the Bible. these things will be kept in view, as they have a very important bearing on the passages about Gehenna in the New Testament. Gehenna, the valley of Hinnom, or tophet, is made by Jeremiah an emblem of the temporal calamities coming on the Jewish nation. That in this very way, it is used in the New Testament, we shall show when we come to consider the passages

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where it occurs. Dr. Campbell, is so far correct then in saying, that Gehenna was made an emblem of punishment, but is certainly mistaken in saying, that it was made an emblem of future eternal punishment for the devil and his angels, or any other beings in the uni

Supposing, Gehenna to have been made an emblem of the place of eternal torment to the wicked, it is certain, it was not done by the Old Testament writ

Dr. Campbell assures us, that in this manner it does not occur in the Old Testament. That he is correct in this, is plain from the places in which it occurs. Is it not then deserving particular notice, that the Old Testament writers should use the term Gehenna, as an emblem of temporal and not of eternal punishment ; and yet we are told, that in process of time it came to be used as an emblem of eternal punishment; but no man can tell us on whose authority this was done ?


اميرة : زه تا




Before we consider the texts, where Gehenna occurs in the New Testament, it is of importance to notice the following facts. They have been altogether overlooked, or but little attended to in discussions on this subject.

1st, The term Gehenna, is not used in the Old Testament, to designate a place of endless punishment to the wicked. This fact is so palpable, that Dr. Campbell, declares positively, Gehenna has no such meaning there. All admit this fact; which ought to lead all, to

examine carefully, if Gehenna in the New Testament, can mean a place of endless misery. We ought not to take this for granted; but be sure we correctly understand the passages which speak of Gehenna. This has been too long believed without any examination. The admitted fact, that Gehenna has no such sense in the Old Testament, ought to create the suspicion, that the sense of Gehenna is misunderstood in the New.

2d, It is also a fact, that those who believe Gehenna, designates a place of endless punishment in the New Testament, entirely overlooked its meaning in the Old. All admit, its literal original signification to be, the valley of Hinnom. But not one of them takes the least notice, that Gehenna was used also by Jeremiah, as a source of imagery, or emblem, to describe the punishment God threatened to the Jewish nation. But why overlook this sense of Gehenna in the Old Testament? Is it not possible, yea, is it not probable, that this may be its sense in the New ? All critics admit, the language of the New Testament is derived from the old, and ought to be interpreted by it.

3d, The fact is also notorious, that those who believe Gehenna in the New Testament, designates a place of endless punishment, give it this sense on mere human authority. Dr. Campbell above, says, Gehenna came gradually to assume this sense, and at last came to be confined to it. But no divine authority is referred to, for the origin of this sense attached to the term Gehenna. Professor Stuart, refers to the later, Jews, the Rabbinical writers, as authority. And finally tells us

“ Gehenna came to be used as a designation of the infernal regions, because the Hebrews supposed that demons dwelt in this valley.” But who can believe, the term Gehenna in the New Testament, is used in a sense which originated in a silly superstitious notion ?

4th, Another fact is, the word Gehenna only occurs twelve times in the New Testament. The following are

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all the texts, Math. v. 22, 29, 30, and xviii. 9. Mark ix. 43–47. Luke xii. 5. Math. x. 28, and xxiii. 15, 33. James iii. 6. The rendering of Gehenna in these texts, is uniformly hell in the common version. The fact, that Gehenna, is only used twelve times, in the New Testament deserves notice, for Dr. Campbell and others say, this is the only word in the Bible, which designates a place of endless punishment. Now, supposing this to be true, do most Christians know, that their place of endless punishment, is only mentioned twelve times there? But correctly speaking, Gehenna was not used even twelve times originally. It occurs eleven times in the Gospels of Mathew, Mark, and Luke, which all know, are only three histories of the same discourses in which Gehenna was used by our Lord. Viewing the subject in this light, few words of such importance, occur so seldom in the New Testament as the word Gehenna. I notice this, to show the difference, between our Lord and modern preachers as to the frequency of their use of the word hell, which is the rendering of Gehenna. Allowing it used twelve times in the New Testament, this is not so often, as many preachers use it in the course of a single sermon. That they never ought to use the texts, in which Gehenna occurs, in proof of a place of endless punishment, we shall show afterwards.

5th, The fact is also indisputable, that the word Gehenna is used by our Lord, and by James, but by no other person in the New Testament. Any person who can read English, may satisfy himself of the correctness of this fact, by reading the texts referred to above. John, wrote the history of our Lord, as well as Mathew, Mark, and Luke, but he never speaks of Gehenna, either in his Gospel or Epistles. What is more remarkable, Luke, though he uses Gehenna once in his Gospel, never uses it in the Acts, which contains the history of the Apostles' preaching for thirty years.

Paul, Peter, and Jude, are entirely silent about Gehenna, which is very strange, if it designated a place of endless punishment to the wicked. The writings of those persons, who have never mentioned Gehenna, form two thirds of the New Testament. But surely, it is a very natural expectation, warranted by the frequency of other important subjects mentioned, that all the writers in the New Testament should often speak of Gehenna, if it did mean a place of endless misery. And if they did believe this, yet were silent about it, they were not so faithful to their hearers as most modern preachers. But can any man believe, our Lord's disciples understood him to mean by Gehenna a place of endless misery, yet most of them never said a word about it in their preaching, or in their letters to the churches ? Is it at all propable, that they would lay aside the term Gehenna, used by their Lord to designate a place of endless misery, and adopt some other language to express it? We strongly doubt this.

6th, But another striking fact is, all that is said about Gehenna in the New Testament, was spoken to Jews, and to Jews only. No Gentile, is ever threatened with Gehenna punishment. This fact is indisputable, which every person can satisfy himself about, by simply reading the texts where Gehenna is used, with their respective contexts. It is of no consequence to decide, to whom the Gospels were originally addressed, for in the eleven places where our Lord used the term Gehenna, it is certain he was speaking to Jews. And in the only other place where Gehenna occurs, it is certain, James wrote to the twelve tribes which were scattered abroad. James i. 1, Comp. Chap, iri 6. It forms no objection to this fact--" That our Lord's ministry was among the Jews, and not among the Gentiles, hence could not say to the Gentiles as to the Jews

how can ye escape the damnation of hell, (Gehenna).” The Apostles' ministry was among the Gentiles;

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