A CRUCIAL POINT ON HELL cf. CHRIST in Mark 9
As is by no means unusual in colourful, dramatic and insurgent teaching, moving like a missile into the heart of a complex or difficult matter of great concern to many for a long time, one has to be careful not to mistake imagery for substance, or the thrust of the theme, for its details.
Thus when Christ speaks of the worm
not dying in those committed to that destiny under enduring condemnation, there
is an obvious application which must not be missed. In Revelation 21:7-8 you
find the statement concerning the bliss of the kingdom to come, that there will be no
evil thing, for the celestial estate will not be enterable, but will be inviolable, not
subject to insurgence. There is an application parallel to this. The assurance
does not lack the following elements in Mark 9.
1) Evil, being vanquished, will not be restored in any sort of resurgence, revolution, stampede, Sphinx magic and so on. It WILL BE ACTIVELY DESTROYED FOR EVER. It will not lick its wounds and awake revenge. Its inherent claim to be a form of life is devastated for ever, and nothing active has one moment in which to grow, to recrudesce. It is finished forever. Heaven will be heaven without compromise, any kind of threat, while evil of any form, format, function or activity will be subject in short to everlasting destruction. Hell is its eternal outgoing, and it goes.
2) The territory of evil is not only annihilated; it is annihilative. That is, it has the opposite property, for just as life tends to grow towards maturity, so will this devilish and evil domain be conducted to deconstruction and that, actively. It is de-created by the power to which all creation looks. Its removal is not merely massive and eternal in practice; it is so in principle; not only in power but in procedure. It will be seen here no more. No longer will there even be a facility for futility in this world, due to the curse, but on the contrary, a facility for function, while rebellion like the dreams of a troubled child, is evanescent, evacuated of actuality, and in this case, a realm of ruin total, absolute, final, terminal and actively ensured.