(Note: this is part of my Exegetical Compilation project.)
Proponents of hopeless punishment often cite Daniel 12:2 as evidence in their favor (whether ECT or annihilation), because it speaks of the resurrection of the wicked to “disgrace and everlasting contempt/abhorrence” (as the NASB translates it).
Not many verses later, though, Daniel asks what will be the final end or outcome of these events (v.8). The angel (possibly the visible YHWH) replies that in regard to the end time (v.10), “Many will be purged, made white and refined, but the wicked will act wicked and none of the wicked will understand, but the instructors will understand.” This language is similar to Malachi 4:1-3 (and its contexts back through Malachi 3. See exegetical comments on Matt 3:10-12.)
Back at Dan 12:3, “the instructors” are compared to those who lead the many to righteousness: they will shine brightly like the expanse of heaven and the stars AHD OLAM (which could mean forever and ever).
The wicked in other words won’t understand what the punishment and contempt is for, but the instructors will understand it’s for purging, making white and refining the wicked, leading them to righteousness.
Compare with Rev 22 where the righteous will keep doing what the righteous do even though the wicked keep doing what the wicked do: the wicked continue being filthy, but the Bride keeps going out with the Spirit to exhort those outside the NJ to slake their thirst, wash their robes and obtain permission to enter the NJ to be healed by the tree of life.
Compare also with Isaiah 66:24, which doesn’t yet speak of the resurrection of the rebels slain at the coming of Christ (and probably speaks of them being buried by the righteous – see notes on Isaiah 66), but where the only other OT occurrence of the term for abhorrence can be found. Jesus references this final verse of Isaiah in Mark 9 (and Matt 18) when speaking of the fire of Gehenna, and goes on (in Mark 9:49-50) to explain the purpose of the unquenchable fire is to salt everyone so that they will have salt in their hearts and be at peace with one another.
Members are encouraged to add further or alternate commentary below, and to post links to other discussions of these verses, whether here or off-forum.
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