article deals with one of the leading
mistranslations of the Greek New Testament into
English. Most leading selling English Bible
translations contain this error. Some of the Bibles
that contain this great error are: the King James
Version, the New International Version, the New
American Standard Bible, the New Revised Standard
Version, the Living Translation, the Amplified
Bible, all Catholic versions as well as many others.
This article serves only as an introduction to this
most important topic.
single error has caused much of Christianity to
completely misrepresent the True God of the
Christian Bible. If one accepts the proofs contained
in this article, they will find themselves in direct
conflict with much of "traditional"
Christianity. Only a few of those reading this
article will take the step of faith to turn aside
from the traditional stand and repent, that is,
change their minds and stand for the truth. But as
we have seen from many Bible stories, God doesn't
need a majority to accomplish His purposes in this
earth. A "remnant" will do just fine.
If it was found to be true that the concept of God
having created a place of "everlasting
punishment" called Hell was false, would that
change the world's view of God, of Christianity, of
themselves and their position with God?
is an obvious "Yes!" And that is precisely
what the world will learn in the next few
years…that God loves them and always has loved
them and it has NEVER entered His mind to eternally
torture anyone. This truth will change many people's
outlook on life, themselves and their neighbors.
This article is a Scriptural baby step towards
proving that the Christian Bible in its original
form NEVER taught a place of being "tormented
for ever and ever." This is a gross
Hebrew and Greek, the words rendered 'everlasting'
have not this sense. They signify a long duration of
time, a period, whence the phrase, 'during these
eternities and beyond.'" Dr. Lammenois
the way through it is never feasible to understand 'aionios'
(Greek word translated eternal, everlasting, and for
ever in many English Bible translations.) as
everlasting." Dr. Nigel Turner
me say to Bible students that we must be very
careful how we use the word 'eternity.' We have
fallen into great error in our constant usage of
that word. There is no word in the whole Book of God
corresponding with our eternal…" Dr. G.
(the Hebrew for aion) simply signifies for a long
time. The Hebrew Scriptures do not contain any
doctrine of everlasting punishment." Rabbi
statements from leading Greek and Hebrew scholars
may come as a shock to many Christians. One will not
hear statements like the ones above in a typical
Sunday school class, nor will one find them in some
of the most prominent Biblical language reference
works such as Strong's Concordance, Thayer's
Lexicon, Theological Dictionary of the New
Testament, Vine's Expository Dictionary of Biblical
How is an
average Christian not versed in the original
languages of the Bible to know which view is
correct? Our whole concept of Christianity radically
changes depending upon how one interprets these key
words. This short article has been prepared to prove
conclusively that those scholars and Bible
translations which have rendered the words "aion"
and its adjective in terms like "for ever and
ever," "everlasting," or
"eternal," are simply wrong. And one does
NOT need to know Greek or Hebrew to prove this out
MOST Christians will follow tradition rather than
"seeing if these things be so." It is the
exceptional person who is willing to go against the
tide of tradition and willing to stand for the truth
regardless of the persecution it may bring upon
themselves. If you are the type of person who wants
the truth regardless of what it will cost them, then
this article will be a blessing to you. We are going
to look at the Greek behind the English expression
"for ever and ever." We have many other
articles and books dealing with other mistranslated
words like "Hell," "damnation,"
English-speaking peoples have heard and used the
English expression "forever and ever."
This phrase has become an "idiomatic"
expression to most English-speaking people meaning
"eternity, perpetuity or everlasting."
This is an English rendering of actually several
DIFFERENT phrases found in the Greek New Testament.
seminary students have been taught that the
expression "forever and ever" is an
idiomatic expression meaning
"everlasting." Those of the Fundamentalist
persuasion, who believe the Bible should be
translated literally say that this term is
translated into the English literally, that is, it
is NOT an idiomatic expression, but a word-for-word
literal rendering. Both are wrong. The ancient
Greeks would probably render this translation
"idiotic," NOT idiomatic! You see, the
Greek construct of this term would make it extremely
difficult for a first century Greek to see how we
moderns even came close to concocting terms like
"forever and ever" from the Greek word
"aion" and its adjective "aionios"
and their derivatives. Let me explain.
idiom "It's raining cats and dogs" only
makes sense to us because we have been taught to
associate the meaning, "It's raining
heavily" with those words. Should a Chinese
person just beginning to learn English read
"it's raining cats and dogs," their
natural instinct would first be to take the phrase
literally. There is no way they could determine the
"idiomatic" meaning of that phrase unless
someone explained to them they were reading an idiom
and then gave them its meaning. An idiom is an
expression peculiar to a particular people or
language the meaning of which is not apparent to
those outside that group. Most languages have them.
American English is filled with them. "I'm
hip," "that's cool," "far out,
man," "I dig you," are some examples.
(I say "American" English because many
idioms of the United States are not idioms of other
translations contain the words "forever AND
ever." It sounds nice because we have heard and
read this expression thousands of times. Once a
tradition is set into the language or customs of a
particular people, it is difficult to remove.
However, just because a tradition has been around a
long time and has been assimilated by a large group
does NOT make it true. There are more traditions in
this world based upon pure falsehood and
superstition than one can imagine. Santa, the
Christmas tree, and the Easter Bunny are examples of
how pagan myths and superstitions have entered
christendom. Many of our Bible translations contain
material as far off from spiritual truth as is the
Easter Bunny. The phrase "forever and
ever" is one of them.
"forever and ever" is a traditional phrase
which has been around in English-speaking nations
for several hundred years. It has been accepted as a
true rendering of the Greek New Testament for a long
time by millions of people. Nevertheless, this
"tradition of the elders" is false.
Furthermore, it is a tradition that has cause great
havoc and produced many contradictions in our
English Bibles. Even more significantly, it is a
tradition that besmears the character of the God of
Christianity to such an extent that the original
writers of the Bible would not recognize this God as
the one they were inspired to write by in the first
place! For example:
Revelation 20:10 is one of several places where we
find the English phrase "forever AND
original it is written:
eis tous aionas ton aionon anabainei
Unto (or into) the eons of the eons.
for ever and ever.
Parallel NT in Greek and English
unto the ages of the ages.
to the ages of the ages.
Literal New Testament:
for the eons of the eons.
The part we
want to focus on in the Greek is the "aionas
ton aionon" part. As we can see, the literal
translations and the Greek clearly focus on
"ages of the ages," or "eons of the
eons," rather than "for ever and
ever" which actually makes no sense at all the
way the Greek is constructed here.
and "aionon" are in the plural in the
Greek. There is no plural of "ever" in
English. And if "ever" mean eternity, what
is the purpose of adding another "ever?"
How does "eternity and eternity" sound?
Sounds pretty stupid, doesn't it? Well, that's how
stupid our "for ever and ever" would sound
to an early Christian. However, "ages of the
ages," made perfect sense to them then and it
makes perfect sense to us in modern English.
word "eon" comes directly from the Greek
word "aion." Our "eon" DOES have
a plural form just like the Greek word "aion."
So then, our English word "age" AND our
English word "eon" work perfectly in
correctly translating this Greek phrase. Why don't
ALL of our English translations use these words
instead of "for ever and ever" which makes
so sense at all? Tradition!
mentioned before "aionas" and "aionon"
are both PLURAL forms of "aion." Ever is
singular. This should throw up a red flag.
Furthermore, the Greek word "ton" between
the two plural forms of "aion" means
"of" or "belonging to" or
"what comes out of" the aionon. It NEVER
means "and" in the Greek. Why did some of
our leading selling Bible translations violently
break translation rules in this phrase and translate
"ton"--and? Again…plain old tradition.
As we can see from the above examples, bringing the
plural forms of "aion" into a plural form
of age or eon works perfectly in the English. And
translating "ton" into "of the"
also works perfectly. There are many English
translations which of done exactly that either
directly in the text itself or in the margins or
footnotes. So why do SOME leading selling English
translations still violate the original Greek and
Hebrew text by grossly twisting this Greek phrase
into the nonsensical "for ever and ever?"
I'll explain the REAL reason at the end of this
fact that both "aionas," and "aionon"
were in their plural, if the King James Bible and
its cousins wanted to translate the Greek word
"aion" as "ever," AND stay true
to the Greek forms of speech, they should have come
up with the following rendering: "for the evers
As we can
plainly see, this is getting pretty messy. Neither
"for evers AND evers" nor "for evers
of the evers" makes any sense in English at
all. But "for the ages of the ages" or
"for the eons of the eons" makes perfect
sense both in the Greek and in the English.
MANY English Bibles who have broken the
"tradition of the elders" in this regard
in order to bring forth the true meaning of the
Greek Many more will do so in the years to come.
They have translated this Greek phrase "aionas
the eons of the eons." Concordant Literal New
"for the ages of the ages." Young's
Literal, and others
"for the aeons of the aeons." The New
Covenant by Dr. J.W. Hanson
"unto the ages of the ages." Rotherham's
Emphasized, and others
"through the ages of the ages." The Holy
Bible in Modern English
really more amazing is that the double construct
phrase of the Greek word "aion" appears in
two other forms in the Bible. In one form both aions
appear in the singular and in the other form, one
aion is singular and the other is plural. In order
for the "traditional" folks to be honest
in their translating and still maintain that "aion"
means "ever," they would have to give us
English that reads like this:
and ever," and "ever and everS," and
"everS and everS."
rational person can begin to see, our English
"forever and ever," has NO resemblance to
the original Greek form. The Greeks would NOT be
able to understand at all how we came to such a
meaning so remote from the original Greek. They
would NOT consider these Greek constructions
"idiomatic" expressions at all NOR literal
translations. They would consider it all theological
bunk. (Which is what it all really is.)
had no problem with plural forms of the word "aion,"
because it meant to them what our modern word
"eon" means to us. Eons are periods of
time, NOT eternity. "Eon, eons, eon of the eon,
eon of the eons, eons of the eons, made perfect
sense to the Greeks of the first century A.D. AND
they make sense in modern English. We have many
translations which have translated these Greek
phrases this way or similar ways, as I pointed out
previously. When we allow "aion" and its
derivatives to be an indeterminate period of TIME
(which is what it really means), rather than
"eternity," reason returns to us instead
of senseless meanings which only wreak havoc by
destroying the true image of the God of the Bible.
When it is
determined that "aion" means and has
always meant "an indeterminate period of
time" sometimes long enough to be called an
"age," sometimes as short as the three
days and nights Jonah spent in the fish (Jonah 2:6),
then we can easily see a number of ages in
succession. Then phrases like the "age of the
ages" becomes a particular age out of several
ages. This is exactly what the Greeks had in mind.
some examples where the Greek double construct of
aion shows three completely separate renderings
which the King James and its kissing cousin Bibles
hide from our hungry eyes. The Greek language is a
very precise language. If it uses three different
constructions of the double use of "aion,"
there is a very good reason for it. To arbitrarily
translate all of them exactly the same way
"forever and ever" as the KJV, NIV, NASB,
NRSB, Amplified, Living, etc. have done, is NOT
translating, its butchering the Greek through dark
(aionos ton aionon): Ephesians 3:21
Singular/singular (aiona tou aionos): Hebrews 1:8
Plural/plural (aionas ton aionon): Revelation 20:10,
1 Peter 4:11
"aion" in ALL its forms refers to
"ages" which have ends AND beginnings.
There are at least 5 ages (perhaps more) mentioned
in the Greek New Testament. There is only ONE
eternity, not multiples.
were "aions" in the past, then it means
they each must have ended for they are now past! The
New Testament writers spoke of "the present
wicked aion" which ended during that very
generation. Obviously, it was followed by another
"aion"-- the "aion" in which we
presently live. If there are "aions" to
come, it must mean that this one we live in will
There is a
verse which says "the consummation of the aions"
showing that each "aion" ends. So how can
they be eternal?
There is "the coming eon" (Matt.10:30,
There is "the present wicked eon"
There is "the oncoming eons (plural and
There is "the conclusion of the eon (present)
There is "the secret concealed from the eons
and Hebrew languages have several expressions which
are constructed similarly to the double construct of
the word "aion" as in "aionas ton
aionon." We frequently find expressions like
"King of kings," "Lord of
Lords," and "Holy of Holies." But
"for everS AND everS" makes no real sense
to anyone in any language except to the
traditionalist who refuses to let go of their
tradition because it would cost them more than they
are willing to let go of.
control, money, prestige, anger, wrath, vengeance,
self-righteousness, etc. are NOT things most of us,
especially religious folks of all persuasions are
willing to let go of easily or without a big fight.
Are you willing to let go of these things? We all
know how hard it is to let go of these things--but
let go we must--if we are to go on into a deeper
relationship with our Creator and Father. Unless we
let go of these traditions, our image of God is
nothing more than an idol, a false image formed in
our minds from false information. The greatest form
of idolatry is not bowing down to a stone or piece
of wood--it is holding our very life to a false
concept of God in our hearts and minds. Ezekiel
warned of such idolatry in the fourteenth chapter of
his book. Do not be deceived--the image of God as
one who created a place in which He is either going
to annihilate or torture many of the human beings He
created, is an idol of the magnitude of Moloch, or
Baal--nay, it is an abomination a thousand times
worse. The plain fact of the matter is that most of
Christianity has been and presently still is bowing
down to this hideous image. And we wonder why the
world is in the confusion that it is. We wonder why
the church is so full of hypocrisy. The answers
become very plain and simple when we become honest
enough with ourselves and our belief systems to look
at the facts regardless of what it will cost us.
that to follow Him would cost us our lives. Will you
lay down your inherited traditions so that the True
Image of God may rise in your hearts and minds and
find expression through your being? I warn you, just
as Jesus had to come against the very people who
claimed to represent Him and His Father, you too,
will find yourself standing against a huge army of
tradtionalists who refuse to allow the True Gospel
(which will set creation free) from coming forth.
You will understand what it means to "suffer
for His Name's sake." Jesus and His Father have
been greatly maligned by the traditional view of
Christendom. God is raising up an army of men,
women, AND children who will strike this false image
at its feet and destroy it forever. (Daniel 2:45) I
hope the reader is given the grace and boldness to
join in the cause.
Christian, please study this out. Ask some Greek
experts why some English translations have the word
"and" between the two "aions?"
Oh, make sure you find an expert who knows what the
word "is" is. You may discover there are
as many spinmeisters in theology as there are in
politics. Ask them why they don't make
"ever" plural like it is in the Greek. Let
them explain what "foreverS AND everS" or
"foreverS of the everS" means.
"Forever and ever," the present English
form in many of our Bibles would make absolutely NO
sense to those who were inspired to write these
words in the first place over 1900 years ago. When
we get honest enough with ourselves to examine
whether our beliefs are based upon tradition or the
Truth, we will discover that "forever and
ever" makes no sense period. We will discover
we have been duped. Paul warned 1900 years ago that
many wolves would enter the church after his
departure. John, the apostle warned that even during
his time there were MANY anti-christs. The fact
there are over 30,000 denominations of Christendom
should attest to their warnings. There is only ONE
body of Christ, not 30,000 of them. Paul warned
about following after men in his letters to the
Corinthians. (1 Cor. 3:1-10) Today, we have
literally thousands of denominations each built upon
the teachings of some man or woman. We have
Lutherans, Wesleyans, Calvinists, etc. We have those
who swear allegiance to the Pope or a Patriarch. It
is this error which has caused us to fall from the
truth and be trapped in systems of tradition which
make the word of God of no effect.
"Thus you have made the
word of God of no effect by your TRADITION.
Hypocrites! Well, did Isaiah prophesy about you,
saying: 'These people draw near to Me with their
mouth, and honor Me with their lips, but their heart
is far from Me. And in vain they worship Me,
teaching as doctrines commandments of men.'"
going to stay true to the "tradition of the
elders" or are we going to become faithful to
the Spirit which inspired the writers of the New
Testament? If we desire to be true to the Spirit of
inspiration, then we will have to abandon this
tradition, and many others that are outside the
parameter of this article.
why some scholars, Bible publishers and preachers
have not already abandoned this false translation is
because of what it would cost them should they
translate these words correctly. If they pull
further on this thread we have just exposed, and
unravel it completely by translating it honestly,
the whole concept of a hell in which people are
tortured endlessly (forever and ever) completely
falls apart! Many in Church leadership simply
haven't caught on to the fact that Love will draw a
lot more people than fear. Perfect love casts out
fear. We become what we worship. Look at church
history and see what the doctrine of endless
punishment has left behind…thousands of wars,
Christians killing each other and killing
non-believers by the tens of millions in the name of
God. Jesus' sword of His mouth has been replaced
with the sword in the hand leaving behind a river of
blood up to the horse's bridle.
believe God is going to torture most of mankind, our
actions in the world have and will continue to
reflect our beliefs and the nature of the God we
worship. We cannot rise to a higher level than the
concept of god we hold in our hearts. If our God
hates His enemies enough to have created a place to
do to them what no human on earth is capable of
doing to another human being, then we will, in a
measure manifest some of that hatred. Look to church
history. Those of us who read church history without
applying tons of whitewash will find a very gruesome
picture, regardless of whether they be Catholic,
Orthodox, or Protestant.
It has been
said that when the Catholic Mary, queen of England,
had thousands of Protestants burned at the stake
that she said something like, "I only do here
on earth what my God will continue to do to them
perpetually." The wars, hangings, burnings, and
drownings the Protestant denominations and the
Orthodox branches have committed proves that ALL
denominations of christendom which assemble under
the banner of a god who will endlessly torture or
annihilate most of mankind do NOT reflect the nature
and character of the One who laid down His life for
His friends AND His enemies.
your enemies and pray for those who persecute
you…" (Matthew 5:44) This is a far cry from
what "traditional" christendom has
manifested during the last 1600 years. I say, 1600
hundred years rather than 1900 years because the
early church of the first few centuries did NOT
believe in such a fiend. They knew this image
of God was the false image all the OTHER pagan
nations believed in. When the church was married to
the Roman Emperor under Constantine, and the Roman
Empire's military arm became an instrument of the
church used to destroy its enemies and its heretics
and apostates, the death knoll sounded. The
God of Christianity was changed from the Savior of
the World to the Eternal Torturer of most of
mankind. The God of Christianity was conformed to
the tyrant murderers who controlled the Church.
Those gentle-spirited Christians who believed in
non-violence were either killed or they headed to
the wilderness and became recluses.
church picked up the weapons of the Roman Empire as
its own (military and law), it brought forth the
darkness which we know today as "the Dark
Ages." During this time, the doctrine of
endless tortures was the main instrument church
officials used to hold the masses in check. Did it
produce holiness? Law-abiding citizens? Loving
people? Study this time period yourself and you will
find the greatest cruelty and superstitions that
mankind has ever experienced.
effect the early church had on civilization with the
effect the "Dark Ages" Church has had on
the world. The first taught that God loved all
mankind AND would reconcile all mankind. And
they laid their lives down as proof of their belief.
The "Dark Age" Church taught a cruel
fiendish god who was so hard that even the Pope
himself was not assured of his own salvation. And
this evil church took other's lives instead of
following Christ's and His early Church's example.
churches still exist. The early church whose
majority believed in the salvation of all mankind,
which has only one head, Jesus Christ--and the
"Dark Age" church, made up of many
thousands of denominations started by human beings,
which still teaches the Dark Age gospel that God
will only torture endlessly the great majority of
the rest of mankind. Only a remnant of those who
believe as the early church did has survived
throughout the dark diabolical centuries--but
survive it has. And now it is time for this rock cut
out of the mountain by the Hands of God to come
forth and strike this false image at its feet.
(Daniel 2:45) As I said earlier, God does not need a
majority to accomplish His work. Read about Gideon.