We have concluded, a priori, that the Old Testament must employ the word Aion in the sense of indefinite duration, because that was the uniform meaning of the word in all antecedent and contemporaneous Greek literature. Otherwise the Old Testament would mislead its readers. We now proceed to show that such is the actual usage of the word in the Old Testament.
And let us pause a moment on the brink of our investigation to speak of the utter absurdity of the idea that God has hung the great topic of the immortal welfare of millions of souls on the meaning of a single equivocal word. Had he intended to teach endless punishment by one word, that word would have been so explicit and uniform and frequent that no mortal could mistake its meaning. It would have stood unique and peculiar among words. It would no more be found conveying a limited meaning than is the sacred name of Jehovah applied to any finite being. Instead of denoting every degree of duration, as it does, it never would have meant less than eternity. The thought that God has suspended the question of man's final destiny on such a word would seem too preposterous to be entertained by any reflecting mind, did we not know that such an idea is held by Christians.
Endless duration is never expressed or implied in the Old Testament by Aion or any of its derivatives, except in instances where it acquires that meaning from the subject connected with it.
How is it used? Let us adduce a few illustrative
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