The Spirits In Prison

An illuminating side-light is thrown on this subject by commentators on 1 Pet. 3:18-20, in which Christ is said to have "preached unto the spirits in prison." Alford says our Lord "did preach salvation in fact, to the disembodied spirits, etc." Tayler Lewis —(70) "There was a work of Christ in Hades, he makes proclamation 'ekeruxen' in Hades to those who are there in ward. This interpretation, which was almost universally adopted by the early Christian church, etc." Professor Huidekoper.(71) "In the second and third centuries every branch and division of Christians believed that Christ preached to the departed." Dietelmair(72) says this doctrine "in omni coetu Christiano creditum." Why preach salvation to souls whose doom was fixed for eternity? And how could Christians believe in that doctrine and at the same time give the aionian words the meaning of eternal duration?

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