“And if thine eye may cause thee to stumble, cast it out; it is better for thee one-eyed to enter into the reign of God, than having two eyes, to be cast to the gehenna of the fire — where their worm is not dying, and the fire is not being quenched; for every one with fire shall be salted, and every sacrifice with salt shall be salted.”
(Young’s Literal Translation (YLT) translated by Robert Young in 1862. It is one of the most literal translations, and Young went into translating it without an bias in beliefs…)
At the end of this verse, “Salted with fire” means “purified by fire.” Salt represents a purifying solution.
Notice that last part, “for every one with fire shall be salted.”
Hmm. Not once is hell mentioned here. Only Gehenna, which in Hebrew is referring to the Valley of the Son of Hinnom (a metaphor). It was a place in the Old Testament where mothers sacrificed their children to Molech, a pagan god. Later years, during the time of Jesus (before and after), this valley was where the wicked dead were thrown after dying or being executed… It was also a trash dump, and dogs were there, and these dogs “gnashed” their teeth together and wept.
Can you not agree that the word Gehenna is a mere idea or metephor for something God will use in order to salt all with salt, or “purify with fire” the wicked? Could it be possible that God would “sacrifice” His children (who have been wicked) in this “fire” (metaphor for something like God, the “all-consuming fire” not our earthly fire) in order to destroy everything evil, sinful, dead, and wicked inside us, in order to bring healing and right relationship?
It seems weird, yes, that Jesus would use this idea, Gehenna, to refer to casting the wicked into this fire… But what is Gehenna, according to this scripture? When it speaks of “everyone will be salted with fire, and every *sacrifice will be salted with salt”, is it referring to a possibility, or a fact, that God will cast *everyone into this Gehenna, “sacrificing” them in the fire, and salting them in the fire? Do you think this “metaphor” could be the same idea as the “lake of fire”?
In this life, we are called to “take up our cross daily” and “purify ourselves” of all ungodliness. In fact, Jesus called us to take on this purifying fire, which would cleanse us of all ungodliness and sin; the cleansing of our flesh. There are other verses that speak of going “through the fire” in order to cleanse our beings from our sinful flesh.
And in this verse above in Mark 9, it says that “everyone will be salted with fire.” The “Lake of Fire” is the *second death. And in Revelations it says that the saints, those who believed and followed Christ before the second coming, will not experience the second death in the age to come (age of Judgement). I wonder why? Well, is it possible that it’s because we already have experienced the “second death” - the death to our flesh, our sinful flesh? Have we, Christians, already experienced the “lake of fire” or “Gehenna”? I believe so.
Are we not called to “take up our cross” daily - die to our flesh, become alive in the Spirit - *sacrificing ourselves in th same way Christ did (accept not literally nailing ourselves to a cross), in order to cleanse ourselves of sin, die to death, and enter into life? Couldn’t this be the same reason people will be placed in this Lake of Fire, in order to let them die to death, be rid of sin, and enter into life?
But others, who haven’t in this life gone through it, will go through this second death, which has been said to support the idea of an “unending torment” in hell forever and ever… But in fact, it does not. Gehenna is characterized as a place of purification (yes, painful, sure. Was it easy for you, or is it easy, to die to our flesh daily? No. We wrestle and tremble, weep and “gnash our teeth” together at our sin, to be free from it and inherit Aionios Life)… The Lake of Fire means the very same thing. For the word “fire” here comes from the root word “Pur”, which is the same word used to translate into “pure” or “purity”…
So, we’ve got a fire that is purifying. And we see that it is “salt” that is indeed the solution which purifies EVERYONE. And we also see that this fire is unquenchable, it cannot be quenched. Well, why not? For indeed, the lake of fire and Gehenna are surely representing the “all-consuming fire”, which is a name for God. God embodies the “lake of fire”, which is the same as metephorical Gehenna. God is the “salt” which “purifies” the wicked from their wickedness. And in Revelations it speaks of some glorifying God in the fire (those who have already gone through it) and loving this fire, and others being “tormented” by it, because they are going through a purging. But will these latter few be continually tormented day and night? No. They will grow to love it, as the fire purifies them more and more, until the only thing that is left is God and man, one, together, cleansed and beautiful and full of life. This is when God will be “all in all”.
Whats more funny to me is this. Gehenna is characterized as a place “outside the gates of Jerusalem”… In Revelations, John speaks of Jesus reigning as King, and His chosen ones (those who diligently followed him on this earth) with him, for a thousand years. And the gates of the city (the New Jerusalem) will never be shut. But all those “outside the gates” were weeping and gnashing their teeth together (like the dogs where Gehenna was located in Jerusalem during the time Jesus was on the earth the first time)… Is it possible this Gehenna is a place where God places many of His children to be purified by the all-consuming fire (purified of all their sin and evil deeds)… Could this place, Gehenna, be talking about the purification process (a preparation) that many will go through in the “age of Judgement” (it has a beginning and an end), and at the end of that age of judgement, God will be “all in all” and He will say, “I am making ALL things new”? How beautiful is this, even knowing there will be pain many will go through, but that God will indeed restore all to Life.
This is amazing. Thank you, God, for your revelations and truth. But thank you more for your undying love, which will be shown through your purifying us all, in this life or the next, of all ungodliness and wickedness, into righteous and glorious beings, that will only glorify You *forever.
I can honestly and with all my heart, knowing this truth, praise God without a doubt in my mind of His love and compassion and grace towards ALL humanity, and towards myself.
Romans 5:8-9; 18 “But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. And since we have been made right in God’s sight by the blood of Christ, he will certainly save us from God’s condemnation. Yes, Adam’s one sin brings condemnation for everyone, but Christ’s one act of righteousness brings a right relationship with God and new life for everyone.” (NLT)