9> N.T. 1a.ii: The GOD INSPIRED EXPLANATION of "THE LAST DAYS" & HEAVEN, in Philippians 3:17-21.





17 Brethren,

be Followers together of me,


Mark them which walk

so as you have us for an example.

18 ( Because many walk,

of whom I have told you often,


now tell you even weeping,

that they are

the enemies of the Cross of Christ:

19 Whose End is Destruction,

whose God is their belly,


whose glory is in their shame,

who mind earthly things.)

20 Because

our Conversation is in Heaven;

From Where also

we look for the Savior,

The Lord Jesus Christ:

21 Who Will Change our vile body,

that it May be Fashioned

Like His ( JESUS’ ) Glorious Body,

According to the Working whereby

He ( JESUS )

is Able to Even Subdue All Things

to Himself.”

( from Philippians 3:17-21)

The Lord Jesus Christ

Has All Things

Subjected to Himself.

In two short (and very inspiring) verses,

the Apostle marvelously

encapsulates, reiterates, and confirms his entire




In this brief paragraph, Paul is exhorting the Saints

to imitate him and their other leaders (17);

17 Brethren,

be Followers together of me,


Mark them which walk

so as you have us for an example.

In order to move them to do so, he brings before their eyes

the Final Destiny

of both Sinners and Saints.

As for worldly, gluttonous, and licentious men,

who walk as

The enemies of the Cross of Christ,


their (Final) End is Destruction,

by which Paul means, not Annihilation,


an Eternal “Tearing Down”

in Gehenna,


This Eternal “Tearing Down” in Gehenna

of the enemies of the Cross of Christ,

in their (Final) End is Destruction


to the Eternal “Building Up” in the World to Come





( as seen in Matthew 7:13, Romans 9:22, 1 Corinthians 5:5,

2 Corinthians 10:8, 1 Thessalonians 5:3 & 2 Thessalonians 1:9 ).

Matthew 7:13;

“Enter in at the Strait Gate:

for Wide is the Gate,


Broad is the Way,

that Leads to Destruction,


many there be which Go In There.”



The Gate of Heaven.

Enter ye in at the strait gate: By the “strait gate” is meant Christ Himself; Who elsewhere calls Himself “the Door”, ( John 10:7-9 ) as He is into His churches below, and into all the ordinances and privileges of it; as also to the Father, by Whom we have access to Him, and are let into communion with Him, and a participation of all the blessings of grace;

yes, JESUS is the Gate of Heaven, through which we have boldness to enter into the Holiest of all by faith and hope now;

as there will be hereafter an abundant entrance into the Kingdom and Glory of God, through His Blood and Righteousness.

This is called “strait”; because faith in Christ, a profession of it, and a life and conversation agreeable to it, are attended with many afflictions, temptations, reproaches, and persecutions.

“Entering” in at the “strait gate” meaning “Entering” in through Jesus Christ Himself is by faith, and making a profession of it: hence it follows, that faith is not the gate itself, but the Grace, by which men enter in at the right door, and walk on in Jesus Christ, as they begin with Him.

Because wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leads to destruction; so that THE GATE THAT LEADS to Heaven, being “JESUS CHRIST” and THE GATE THAT LEADS to DESTRUCTION may be easily known from the other.

There is no difficulty in finding out, or entering in at, or walking in the way of sin, which leads to eternal ruin.

The gate of carnal lusts, and worldly pleasures, stands wide open,

and many there be which go in thereat;

even all men in a state of nature;

the way of the ungodly is “broad”, smooth, easy, and every way agreeable to the flesh;

the way of the ungodly takes in a large compass of vices, and has in it abundance of company; but its End is Destruction.

Romans 9:22;

What if God, Willing to Show His Wrath,


to Make His Power Known,

Endured with Much Long-suffering

the Vessels of Wrath

Fitted to Destruction.”

What if God, willing to show His Wrath: The apostle proceeds to clear God from any charge of cruelty and unmercifulness, by observing his conduct in time, both towards those he passes by, and towards those he chooses; for in this and the following verse, nothing is said relating to any act of God before time, everything of that kind being considered already.

In this verse, the apostle considers the conduct of God towards the vessels of dishonor; and let it be observed, that these are called:

vessels of wrath fitted for destruction; they are said to be vessels, and so no longer considered in the clay, in the mass and heap of creature-ship, but as creatures formed and made, and brought into being;

and so to be used as instruments in God’s hands, to subserve His Ends and Purposes, and therefore called “vessels”;

and not only so, but “vessels of Wrath”, fallen sinful creatures, and so deserving of the Wrath of God, and objects of His Vindictive Justice, in whom He May Righteously display His Wrath and Vengeance:

hence they may be so called, being as vessels filled with His Wrath;

as such who are the instruments and executioners of His Wrath are called, in ( Isaiah 13:5 ) , (wmez ylk) , “vessels of His Wrath”;

and in ( Jeremiah 50:25 ) ; where the Septuagint use the same phrase as here: and they are moreover said to be “fitted for destruction”, as Haman is said to be by the Jews;  “because he was fitted for punishment”: so these are said to be “fitted for destruction”, that is, Eternal Damnation; not by God, for this does not respect God’s Act of Ordination to Punishment;

but by Satan, the god of this World, that blinds them, as Satan works effectually in them, and leads them captive at Satan’s will;

and by themselves, by their own wickedness, hardness of heart, and impenitence, do they treasure up to themselves wrath, against the day of wrath, so that their destruction is of themselves: a phrase somewhat like this is used in ( Psalms 31:12 ) , where the Psalmist, under some dismal apprehensions of himself, says, that he was like (dba ylk) , “a perishing vessel”, or “a vessel of perdition”;

the Septuagint render it, (skeuov apolwlov) , “a lost vessel”.

Now what is the method of the Divine Conduct towards such persons ?

Jesus endures [them] with much long-suffering; as He did the old world, before He destroyed it;

and as he did Pharaoh, before He cut him off: God not only supports such persons in their beings, amidst all their impieties and iniquities, but follows and fills them with His Providential Goodness, insomuch that many of them have more than heart can wish;

no, to many He affords the outward means of Grace, which they slight and despise;

externally Calls them, but they refuse, loving darkness rather than light, and therefore are inexcusable: now if after all this Patience, Indulgence, and Forbearance, when He could in Justice have sent them to Hell long ago, He is “willing to show His Wrath”;

God’s Displicency at sin and sinners, His Vindictive Justice, His Righteous Vengeance:

and to make His Power known; what it is He can do, by the utter Destruction and Damnation of such persons; what man in his senses can ever find fault with such a Procedure, or charge it with tyranny, cruelty, and unmercifulness ?

1 Thessalonians 5:3;

“Because when they will say, Peace and safety;

then Sudden Destruction

Comes on them,

as travail upon a woman with child;

and they Will Not Escape.”

For when they shall say; Or men shall say, that is, wicked and ungodly men, persons in a state of unregeneracy:

peace and safety; when they shall sing a requiem, to themselves, promise themselves much ease and peace for years to come, and imagine their persons and property to be very secure from enemies and oppressors, and shall flatter themselves with much and long temporal happiness:

then sudden destruction comes upon them; as on the men of the old world in the times of Noah, and on the inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah in the days of Lot; for as these, will be the days of the Son of man, as at the time of the destruction of Jerusalem, so at the last day;

see ( Luke 17:26-30 ) and as was the destruction of literal Babylon, so of Babylon in a mystical sense, or antichrist and his followers: and which will be

as travail upon a woman with child; whose anguish and pains are very sharp, the cause of which is within herself, and which come suddenly upon her, and are unavoidable; and so the metaphor expresses the sharpness and severity of the destruction of the wicked, thus the calamities on the Jewish nation are expressed by a word which signifies the sorrows, pangs, and birth throes of a woman in travail, ( Matthew 24:8 ) , and likewise that the cause of it is from themselves, their own sins and transgressions; and also the suddenness of it, which will come upon them in the midst of all their mirth, jollity, and security; and moreover, the inevitableness of it, it will certainly come at the full and appointed time, though that is not known:

and they shall not escape; the righteous judgment of God, the wrath of the Lamb, or falling into his hands; to escape is impossible, rocks, hills, and mountains will not cover and hide them; before the judgment seat of Christ they must stand, and into everlasting punishment must they go.

2 Thessalonians 1:9;  

“Who Will be

Punished with Everlasting Destruction

from the Presence of the Lord,


from the Glory of His Power”.


Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction; With destruction both of soul and body, though not with the annihilation of either;

their gnawing worm of conscience will never die, and the fire of divine wrath will never be quenched;

the smoke of their torment will ascend for ever.

Sin being committed against an infinite and eternal Being, will be infinite in its duration; nor will it cease to be in the persons punished, who will not be in the least reformed or purged from sin by punishment;

which will make the continuance of it just and necessary.

And these will be driven:

from the Presence of the Lord; as the former clause may express the punishment of sense the wicked will feel in their own breasts, this may intend the punishment of loss;

or what they will be deprived of, the Presence of the Lord, in which the happiness of angels, and of glorified saints lies;

and may also signify how sudden and terrible their Destruction will be.

As soon as the Lord Appears, they will perish at his presence like wax before the fire;

and so awful will be His Appearance, they will flee from it with the utmost terror, and call to the rocks and mountains to hide them from the face of the Lord, and to screen them from His wrath:

and from the glory of his power; or His Glorious Power, in which He Will Come, and which will be exerted, and shown in raising the dead, and gathering all nations before Him, in Passing sentence on them, and in Executing it.

For THE ETERNAL TRIUNE GODHEAD has Power, as to Save, so to Destroy, as to Glorify the bodies and souls of His saints, so to Destroy the wicked, both body and soul, in Hell;

and the Glory of His Power will be seen BOTH in the Glorification of the bodies and souls of His saints, AS WELL AS in the Tearing Down and Destruction of the wicked, both body and soul, in Hell;


Now it Will Be,

for worldly, gluttonous, and licentious men,

who walk as

The enemies of the Cross of Christ,

that their (Final) End is Destruction,

by which Paul means, not Annihilation,


an Eternal “Tearing Down”

in Gehenna,


which will be rendered ETERNALLY

to the troublers of the Lord’s People.


Adapted from

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