The Lake of Fire

Caution must be exercised when accepting anything in the book of Revelation literally, for in the very first verse John tells us that the things shown to him were “signified,” that is, they were “signed” to him. What follows makes it clear that symbols are the rule in Revelation. While some things may indeed be taken literally, most of what is written cannot. Chapter 20, in which we find the most frequent use of “the second death” and “the lake of fire,” is rich with symbolism. Abstract phenomenon such as “death” and “hell” are treated as substance and cast into “the lake of fire.” This should probably warn us not to literalize the account, for if “death” and “hell” are symbolically cast into “the lake of fire,” it may be that the lake also is a symbol.

Bert Bauman
The Gospel, page 34

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