It is a pity that the noun (aion) has not always been rendered by the English word eon, or son, and the adjective by eonian or aionion; then all confusion would have been avoided. Webster's Unabridged, defines it as meaning a space or period of time, an era, epoch, dispensation, or cycle, etc. He also gives it the sense of eternity, but no one could have misunderstood, had it been thus rendered. Suppose our translation read "What shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the son?" "The smoke of their torment shall ascend for sons of sons." "These shall go away into aionian chastisement, etc." The idea of eternity would not be found in the noun, nor of endless duration in the adjective, and the New Testament would be read as its authors intended.
Let the reader now recall the usage as we have presented it, and then reflect that all forms of the word are applied to punishment only fourteen times in the entire New Testament, and ask himself the question, Is it possible that so momentous a doctrine as this is only stated so small a number of times in divine revelation? If it has the sense of limited duration, this is consistent enough, for then it will be classed with the other terms that describe the Divine judgments. The fact that so many of those who speak or write never employ it at all, and that all of them together use it but fourteen times is a demonstration that He who has made known his will, and who would of all things have revealed so appalling a fate as endless woe, if he had it in preparation, has no such doom in store for immortal souls.
We now pass to corroborate these positions by consulting the views of those in the first centuries of the Christian Church, who obtained their opinions directly or indirectly from the apostles themselves.
Was this article helpful?
Tap into your inner power today. Discover The Untold Secrets Used By Experts To Tap Into The Power Of Your Inner Personality Help You Unleash Your Full Potential. Finally You Can Fully Equip Yourself With These “Must Have” Personality Finding Tools For Creating Your Ideal Lifestyle.