Christian Reconciliation
Holy Bible Jesus Christ

Age and the Greek Words Aion and Aionios
by Mark Sanguinetti

Page 5

Yes, as long as anyone during this future age as described in the book of Revelation worships the beast, which as seen in Revelation 13:1-18 opposed and persecuted the church of Jesus Christ, they will thereafter experience torment. However, there are NO usages of the Greek word for age in Revelation, chapter 13. We have seen from 1 Corinthians 15:24-28 that at some point all dominion, authority and power that opposes Jesus Christ will be destroyed. This includes even death itself. Hence, there will be nothing left in existence that will require torment. As an example of godly purification, the word fire or pur in Greek is also used in 1 Corinthians 3:13-15.

13 Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire (pur); and the fire (pur) shall try every man's work of what sort it is. 14 If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. 15 If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire (pur).

With a loving and just God there is a goal of the purification and cleansing of mankind. And with the Lord Jesus Christ, after any man's work is burned with figurative fire for purification the final result is salvation for man as the above verse clearly states. Otherwise what is the point of the torment of man for their sins if this does not also involve purification from sin? What is this actually accomplishing? This would belittle or degrade God and paint a false picture of God as worse and more harmful than any evil dictator or king who has ever ruled a nation or kingdom. This could even be figuratively seen as much worse than the spiritual equivalent of Adolf Hitler on steroids in Germany before and during World War 2.

Another Greek word that is misunderstood is the related and descriptive adjective used word aionios. A definition of aionios is of or belonging to the age or ages. Since aion or age is often seen with a time limit then aionios can also mean enduring through or pertaining to a period of time. This related word could also simply refer to that which comes from God and relate to His purposes over a period of time or a number of periods of time. Also that God is the God of the ages. Certainly, God is eternal and this is part of God's characteristics and description and as the word aionios relates to God it can be viewed as eternal. However, as used with the word torment should not relate to eternal. It should relate to eternal only when associated with God. As an example, there are only two usages of this word (aionios), a descriptive adjective used in the book of Revelation. The book of Revelation teaches us about a future age or ages, and in the book of Revelation there are 25 usages of the noun aion, which is clearly used in a number of usages as we saw with a time limit. Also 24 of these usages in the book of Revelation for aion, are grouped together in pairs representing plural or multiple ages. There is also a usage with aion used as a noun grouped with aionios, the adjective as seen below from the book of Revelation 1:18. Here is the scripture, which gives us the words of Jesus Christ our Lord, which shows that He has the keys of death and has eternal life.

Revelation 1:18
18 I am the Living One; I was dead, and now look, I am alive for ever (aion) and ever (aionios)! And I hold the keys of death and Hades.

The above verse should be positive to any true believer in Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ alive for ever and ever. Next is the only other usage of aionios in the book of Revelation shown in 14:6. Clearly this is also not promoting eternal torment for mankind. Rather it is promoting the worship of God, which thanks to our Lord Jesus Christ will result in salvation for all who believe in Him. And here we see the gospel, which is the good news of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior offered to mankind. This gospel preached here is for ages and can be considered eternal as God is eternal. This tells us that the gospel of Jesus Christ will continue to be preached in future ages.

Revelation 14:6-7
6 And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting (aionios) gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, 7 Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.

The verses that combine two usages of aion in the same verse are Revelation 1:6, 4:9, 4:10, 5:13, 7:12, 10:6, 11:15, 14:11, 15:7, 19:3, 20:10, and 22:5. These verses are showing multiple ages or time periods. Here is an example of one of these verses, which shows the reign and Lordship of Jesus Christ over the kingdoms of this world. As we have seen and will continue to see this future reign of Jesus Christ as Lord is what ultimately will be eternal.

Revelation 11:15
15 Then the seventh angel sounded: And there were loud voices in heaven, saying, "The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever (aion) and ever (aion)!"

As previously explained when taken literally, how can there be multiple ages that are all eternal? And with multiple ages, one following the next, only the last one could be eternal.  Additionally, pertaining to the biblical usages of the words involving torment, only two of these usages in the New Testament are used in context with the Greek words aion, aionas or aionios. These words for torment when using the Strong’s Greek word numbering system are found with 928, 929, 930 and 931. One of these two I have already covered is found in Revelation 14:10. The only other usage is in Revelation 20:10. Shall be tormented here only deals with the devil and with the symbolic and figurative beast and false prophet. This evil symbolizes religious and political power trying to destroy God's people as seen in Revelation 13:1-18.

Revelation 20:10
10 And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire (pur) and brimstone (theion), where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever (aion) and ever (aion).

And even used here pertaining to the devil's future torment we see the same Greek words for fire and brimstone that we saw in Revelation 14:10, with burning brimstone regarded as having power to purify, and to ward off contagion. Hence, even for the evil sinister devil, God has a goal of purification, although the devil will not like it and experience painful torment. Any torment that the devil experiences in the lake of fire could come from the devil himself. As long as the devil comes only to steal and kill and destroy as scene in John 10:10, the devil will experience this from himself.