Jude 1:5-7

Bob Utley:

  • Apollumi: “This term has a wide semantic field, which has caused great confusion in relation to the theological concepts of eternal judgment vs. annihilation. The basic literal meaning is from apo plus ollumi, to ruin, to destroy.” – pg. 104.
  • “Herein lies the confusion. The term has such a wide semantic usage that different NT authors use it in a variety of ways. I like Robert B. Girdlestone, Synonyms of the Old Testament, pp. 275-277. He relates the term to those humans who are morally destroyed and waiting eternal separation from God versus those humans who know Christ and have eternal life in Him. The latter group is “saved,” while the former group is destroyed.” – pg. 104.
  • “I personally do not think that this term denotes annihilation (cf. E. Fudge, The Fire That Consumes). The term “eternal” is used of both eternal punishment and eternal life in Matt. 25:46. To depreciate one is to depreciate both!” – pg. 104.
  • ““in eternal bonds” This is literally “chains.” Chains are used on angels in I Enoch and Satan is bound with a “great chain” in Rev. 20:1-2. The term “eternal” may mean “powerful,” “adequate,” “sure,” not literally eternal, because these angels are only held until judgment day, when other means of incarceration shall be used (cf. Rev. 20:10,14-15). The point is, some are imprisoned now, so as to control their evil activities.”[1] – pg. 107.
  • ““under darkness” The term Tartarus (not used in Jude, but present in the II Pet. 2:4 parallel) was used in Greek mythology for the holding place of the Titans, the half divine, half human giants. This fits the angelic interpretation of Gen. 6. I Enoch describes the new abode of these rebellious angels (cf. I Enoch 10:5,12) as eternal darkness. How different from heavenly brilliance (glory). The rabbis divided Sheol into “Paradise” (for the righteous) and Tartarus (for the wicked). The term “abyss” (cf. Luke 8:3, Rev. 9:1; 11:7; 20:3) is synonymous with the metaphors of darkness used in verse 13b.”” – pg. 107.
  • “The NT speaks clearly of eternal punishment (cf. Matt. 18:8; 25:41,46; II Thess. 1:9; Heb. 6:2; Rev. 19:20; 20:11,14-15; 21:28; and also I Enoch 54:1). This subject is difficult to discuss because the Bible does not give much information about heaven or hell. It affirms their reality, but does not reveal specific information, usually describing them in metaphorical language. Jesus uses the “valley of the sons of Hinnom,” which was just south of Jerusalem and was used by the Israelis under Manasseh for the worship of Molech, the Canaanite fire god who required child sacrifice. The Jews, out of shame and regret for their own
    participation in these fertility rites, turned this locality into the garbage dump for Jerusalem. Jesus’ metaphors of fire, smoke, and worms came from this place, Gehenna.” – pg. 108.
  • “Evil at all levels will be removed and segregated from God’s creation. Hell is the Bible’s way of describing this permanent divide.” – pg. 108.
  • “Before I leave this topic let me express the pain with which I approach this subject. This is the only suffering in the Bible that is not redemptive. This is not the will of God for anyone. It is a result of willful, continuous rebellion, both angelic and human. It is an open, bleeding sore in the heart of God that will never heal! God’s willingness to allow free will among His creatures results in some painful, eternal losses.” – pg. 108.


  • Utley, Bob. James & Jude. Bible Lessons International. Note: Utley offers good insights into the passage in a balanced manner.
  • Constable, Thomas. Notes on Jude: 2010 Edition. Note: Unfortunately, Constable essentially skirts the entire conversation as far as it regards the nature of post-mortem punishment.
  1. [1]Is the word eternal here different from that used previously? If not, how can Utley make an argument that eternal previously used must be in its durative sense while abrogating this sense just a few verses later? Need further study.

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