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Is there any Scriptural basis for the Protestant concept of the "Immortal Soul"?  In the Systematic Theology of Lewis Sperry Chafer (a disciple and cohort of Scofield), I found no citations of Scripture which support the concept, but simply a statement that the concept is not to be questioned.

With the understanding that the Protestant Faith is distinct from the Christian Faith, it may be said that the concept of an immortal "soul" having existence independent of the body is a principal pillar upon which the Protestant Faith is built.  Accordingly, it is no exaggeration to say that, were that pillar removed, the Protestant Faith would collapse.  Thus, it behooves the Protestant to identify a Scriptural basis for the concept of the Immortal Soul.

3 Answers

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by (3.4k points)
When this question was presented to the host of a Questions-and-Answers broadcast of a major Protestant radio network, the only answer which the host was able to give was to cite several passages  of Scripture in which the wicked are condemned to punishment which is everlasting.

But then, is not death without possibility of resurrection of the category "everlasting"?  Curiously, an unregenerate Jewish rabbi likewise notes that a punishment which is "everlasting" is not necessarily a punishment which is inflicted repeatedly for evermore.

Another remark by the same unregenerate Jewish rabbi indicates that the Protestant concept of the Immortal Soul likely is Talmudic in origin.  The rabbi said that, inasmuch as (according to Jewish thinking) (1) death does not appertain to that which is alive, and (2) the soul is alive, the soul is not subject to death and never dies.
0 votes
ago by (300 points)
The soul is eternal. Where will you spent eternity it is up to you. Either Eternal damnation where there is wailing and gnashing of teeth or the new heaven and new earth wherewith dwelleth righteousness.
ago by (3.4k points)
On what basis do you make the assertion, "The soul is eternal."?
No such declaration can be found within the pages of the Scripture.
Phenomena such as punishment and destruction are termed "everlasting" simply because they never are abrogated, not because they are in progress for evermore.   For example, destruction by fire is everlasting, for it cannot be undone; but once the burning object is reduced to ash, the flame dies out.
ago by (300 points)
“The devil, who deceived them, was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone where the beast and the false prophet are. And they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.”
Revelation 20:10
“And the smoke of their torment ascends forever and ever; and they have no rest day or night, who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name.””
Revelation 14:11

“And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment,”
Hebrews 9:27

“And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”
Matthew 10:28

“But even Moses showed in the burning bush passage that the dead are raised, when he called the Lord ‘the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.’ For He is not the God of the dead but of the living, for all live to Him.””
Luke 20:37
0 votes
ago by (300 points)
Oh yeah? Explain this,

“And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried; And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.”
Luke 16:22-24

Then He will also say to those on the left hand, ‘Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels:”
Matthew 25:41

“in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power, when He comes, in that Day, to be glorified in His saints and to be admired among all those who believe, because our testimony among you was believed.”
II Thessalonians 1:8-10

Revelation 21:8 (KJV)
But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.

Matthew 7:19 (KJV)
Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

Matthew 18:8 (KJV)
Wherefore if thy hand or thy foot offend thee, cut them off, and cast [them] from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life halt or maimed, rather than having two hands or two feet to be cast into everlasting fire.

Matthew 18:9 (KJV)
And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast [it] from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life with one eye, rather than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire

What part of fire don’t you understand? You are deceived and deceiving others.
ago by (3.4k points)
You demonstrate yourself unworthy of an answer.

Proverbs 26:4 - Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him.
ago by (300 points)
Because all you are falsely teaching is that you can sin and not die just like the devil told eve. “Go ahead and disobey GOD. Thou shalt not surely die”. The wages of sin is still death.
If you sin, you will die and not inherit the kingdom.
“He the says I know GOD and does not keep his commandments is a liar and the truth is not in him” 1 John 2:4

All you trying to do is lessen the pain of punishment making the word of GOD of none effect. You are in denial. If you die as a sinner and refuse to obey and come clean on GOD’s terms not yours or the church system of error then you will be in hell standing next to the rich man tormented in flame wishing someone would wet the tip of your tongue. But you deny TRUTH. You want to believe a lie. Believe it. GOD is not gonna stop u. You gotta love the TRUTH scripture says. otherwise, GOD will send strong delusion so u can believe a lie.
ago by (300 points)
What part of tormented in flame no rest night and day forever wailing and gnashing of teeth don’t you comprehend? Nowhere in scriptures says soul is annihilated in hell fire. NOWHERE.
ago by (3.4k points)
(1) The story about the rich man and Lazarus is a parable.  Jesus does not attempt to correct the theology of the Talmudic Jew; that would be futile; the Jew was not willing to receive correction and instruction.  Rather than enraging the Jew by explaining that the concept of "Afterlife" is Talmudic myth, Jesus uses the notions of the Jew concerning the "Afterlife" to warn the self-righteous Jew that the economic and bodily condition of a man in the present life is not a reliable indicator of the status of the man in the eyes of God.  Moreover, in the parable Jesus calls attention to a hallmark of the Jew, which is his lack of mercy.

The fact of the matter is that, apart from the Resurrection, there is no life beyond the Grave.  Man is a chemical organism which at birth is animated by a Spirit of Life imparted by the Lord God.  Upon death, the Spirit returns to the Creator.  When animation ceases, man decomposes and his very existence ceases.  The animating spirit is not an "Immortal Soul"; it is not sentient, but it does preserve the identity of the individual -- his personality, character, and memory.  The identity is preserved so that, upon resurrection, the individual may be recreated; unless the identity is preserved, resurrection is pointless.  God is able to destroy the record maintained in the animating spirit, and thus eliminate the possibility of resurrection; this is the meaning of destruction of the "soul" in Gehenna, Matthew 10:28.

(2) Citations from the Book of Revelation are irrelevant.  Even the most rudimentary investigation of the Book of Revelation quickly reveals beyond doubt that the book is a forgery which no rightful place in the Canon of Scripture.

It is obvious to any Greek scholar that the Apostle John, an uneducated fisherman, Acts 4:13, was incapable of the literary style of the Book of Revelation.  The Book of Revelation is written in an ornate, literary form of Greek which is far removed from the simple earthy style of Greek found in the Epistles of John.

And it is obvious to any student of the Scripture that, at every turn, the Book of Revelation contradicts the teaching of the Scripture as a whole.  Accordingly, in obedience to the exhortation "Prove all things" of 1 Thessalonians 5:21, the Christian ought disregard the teaching of the Book of Revelation and should toss the book into the waste bin or the incinerator.
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