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The Fire That Consumes: A Biblical and Historical Study of the Doctrine of Final Punishment [Paperback]

Edward W. Fudge
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Oct. 1 2000
Evangelical Christians agree that a dreadful destiny awaits those who reject God's presence now. According to the traditional majority view, that destiny will involve everlasting conscious torment in Hell. However, believers are increasingly questioning the traditional view, finding it unbiblical and inconsistent with God's own character. The Fire That Consumes investigates the whole teaching of Scripture on the topic of final punishment, and concludes that Hell will involve the irreversible destruction of body and soul, leaving room for whatever degree of conscious torment God justly decrees in any individual case. An Evangelical Book Club Selection.

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"Forceful and to the point. Exceptionally even-handed." -- New Oxford Review

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Read Fully Before You Judge! Sept. 20 2003
By Babu
Edward Fudge presents excellent Biblical and exegetical arguments refuting the long traditional belief and doctrine about hell. The Bible teaches eternal punishment. But what is that eternal punishment? Is it eternal suffering or ultimately eternal destruction or loss of life? Is God's righteous wrath an end in itself or is God's righteous wrath a means to an end? Will a holy God allow sin and sinner to exist eternally in hell? Is eternal suffering necessary to satisfy God's eternal justice? Does the Bible really teach that everyone has an immortal soul? If the wicked will not suffer eternally how do we explain phrases in Scripture such as "unquenchable fire", "eternal fire", " ... where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth forever and ever." How can we logically and Biblically explain such phrases if those who go to hell will not suffer eternally? Edward Fudge Biblically answers these questions in his book "The Fire That Consumes." For those who may be interested I supplement what Edward Fudge says in my essay "The Bible Vs. The Traditional View of Hell" which can be found on my website at [...] In my essay I also answer some vexing problems and questions not answered in Edward Fudge's book. I am an educated and Reformed Baptist who believes in the Biblical doctrine of conditional immortality and the ultimate final annihilation and eternal destruction of the wicked.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Good Attempt, But Found Lacking Feb. 8 2003
By A Customer
This book is basically a rehashing and condensation of Froom's massive book "The Conditionalist Faith of Our Fathers" 1965/66. Fudge's book is admittedly the best one volume book in defense of conditionalism and annihilationism for the average reader. Even better than "Immortality or Resurrection?" by S. Bacchiochhi. However, like other books that promote this perspective, it doesn't directly deal/grapple/interact with the defenses of the traditional position that have been around for years and years. I'm now a "traditionalist" who used to hold to the view that Fudge's book attempts to defend, but after studying the issues from ALL perspectives I was forced to hold to the traditional understanding of Eternal Punishment (enduring torment) if I was going to be faithful to what the Scriptures ACTUALLY teach about hell and not what my preconceived notions would tell me "must be what the Bible has to mean". Our emotions can get in the way of exegesis and so we have to guard ourselves from interpreting the Bible from our own prejudices. If you really want to know the Biblical teaching on the subject of hell, I recommend that you do the research and get this book along with S. Bacchiocchi's and L. Froom's (if you can find this one) books and compare them with that champion the traditional view.
Master the the positions on all sides, and I'm confident that by prayer and diligent study you will end up convinced like I am that the traditional view is correct.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Solid but not totally consistent. Aug. 6 2003
A powerful book which models a view of hell from a more biblical perspective than the traditional view. The author fails to make his case on several occasions but overall this does not detract from the ultimate value of his work. A must read for those who are investigating the topic. I am presently writing a work which will supplement this authors' weaknesses. A bit wordy and unnecessarily exhaustive at points. Overall a job well done. Pastor Ken
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Subject and A Great Author To Explain It Jan. 25 2001
By A Customer
This is a very thought provoking subject. For anybody (and I don't know anybody who has not) who really wants to know what happens to us when we die, this book is for them. Edward Fudge does a great job in explaining his personal bias, however, always includes what other scholars say that disagree with his theory. It is a very even-handed approach to this study. Great reading!
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5.0 out of 5 stars The best book on the subject! May 13 2002
Absolutely incredible! This book answers the traditionalists, defends Conditionalism with the best arguments I have found. This book cannot be refuted in my estimation, a great book!
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