"Three? Did you say three eternal destinies?
I thought it was only heaven or hell..."
Can you imagine yourself asking this question? If so, it is not
surprising. After all, Christians have been preaching about heaven and hell
for almost two thousand years. During that same time however,
thoughtful people have struggled with another difficult question:
What happens to the millions who never had chance to hear about Jesus
Christ? Are they all going to hell?
There are many "pat" answers to this question. But these answers fail to
bring peace to the consciences of many sensitive people. It is hard for them
to accept a god that arbitrarily condemns anyone who didn't have a chance to
"believe" in Jesus Christ. It goes against a person's inborn sense of a just
and loving Creator.
Amazingly enough, the Bible presents many profound contradictions to the
"turn or burn" doctrine. In fact, the God who is described in the Bible gives
all of mankind a choice and the ability to choose good over evil. This is His
desire for all people. This is what will ultimately determine a person's
Every person will go to one of the Three Eternal Destinies of
Man. God does not decide this for a person, as though it were a matter
of fate. Each person chooses his own eternal destiny with each choice he
makes during his life. His actions indicate which path he is on. At the end
of each path of life is an eternal destiny. That destiny completely
hinges on what a person chooses to do during his life.
Perhaps the phrase eternal destiny has a bad connotation for you.
However, it is as simple as the word destination. Destination is
that place you arrive at. And you end up at the place you travel toward. The
further you go, the harder it is to get back to the place where you started.
Eventually you can't find your way back even if you try. In the same way,
however you live your life now determines where you will end up
Just like every person who was ever born, you have a conscience.
This tells you instinctively what is right and what is
wrong. It keeps a record of all that you do. Before eternity begins,
there will be a judgment. At this judgment you must give an account for what
you have done your conscience will either defend or condemn
you on that day.
Revelation 22:11 shows The Three Eternal Destinies of Man
(proving that God is fair to everyone)
All mankind is made up of three categories. Each category has its own
The first category contains two classifications of people
who do evil: the Unjust and the Filthy.
The Unjust take advantage of others for their own selfish gain.
The Filthy ruin the lives of others with their own moral corruption.
The second category is made up of those who do good:
called the Righteous (or Just).
The third category is the Holy.
Revelation 22:11 pictures each eternal destiny as the outcome of a way of
He who is unjust, let him be unjust still;
he who is filthy, let him be filthy still;
he who is righteous, let him be righteous still;
he who is holy, let him be holy still.
This means that the way a person chooses to live now is how he will be
forever and ever.
This is why it says "unjust still... filthy still...
righteous still... holy still."
Still means forever and ever.
For all the people in all the nations of the world there will be a
This judgment will be based on what they have done, regardless of what
they claim to believe.
Do not be surprised at this; the time is coming when all the dead in the
graves will hear His voice, and they will come out of their graves: those
who have done good will rise and live, and those who have done evil will
rise and be condemned. (John 5:28-29)
The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up
the dead that were in them, and each person was judged according to what he
had done. (Revelation 20:13)
God will give to each person according to what he has done. To those who
by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor, and immortality, He will
give eternal life. But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the
truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger. (Romans 2:6-8)
The people in each of the three categories of mankind will exist eternally
in a place that has been prepared:
The Unjust and the Filthy will go to the place prepared for Satan and his
angels - experiencing forever and ever a second death in the eternal lake of
The Righteous will go to the place that has been prepared for them since
the world began - enjoying a second life in the nations of God's eternal
The judgment of those who do evil will be fair.
No one is born unjust or filthy. People make themselves that way by the
things they do. All are born with the knowledge of God in their conscience.
They instinctively know right from wrong. The unjust and the filthy do not
like to retain that knowledge.9 Both classes
break the everlasting covenant of conscience10 and callous their hearts by ignoring the truth. As a
result, they hurt others and lead others astray from doing what is right.
Thus they earn for themselves the fate of Satan and his angels. At the
judgment,11 the second death will be their eternal
The judgment of those who do good will be fair.
The Righteous stay within the boundaries of conscience. They are born in a
fallen state, and so they do sin,13 but they do
not reject the instinctive knowledge of good and evil within them.14 Instead they obey their conscience; they do not sin so as to ruin
others. So, after paying for their sins in death15 they
will rise from the first death to face judgment.16 They
will not go to the second death because they do not deserve it. They do not
practice the deeds which the Bible describes as worthy of the decond
death.17 Since they persevere in doing
good18 their eternal destiny will be a second life in the
The judgment of the Holy will also be fair.
The Holy have already been judged worthy of eternal life. They do not need
to face the judgment that decides a person's eternal destiny.20 They will not go to a second life in the eternal nations or to a
second death in the lake of fire. They have already passed out of eternal
death and into eternal life.21 This is evident from the daily
life of self-denying love that they lead.22
Seeing that they would be willing to do His will,23 God
redeemed them with the death of His Son,24 Yahshua25 the
Messiah, and set them apart for His very own plan and purpose. (He did this
not because of any good thing that they had done, but only because of His
mercy. Most of those He has redeemed were actually on their way to the second
death.) Their response of wholehearted devotion shows that His suffering in
death for them was worthwhile. He said they will prove themselves worthy of
Him by leaving behind their own life, property, possessions, family, etc. to
become His disciples.26
Those who do not respond this way judge themselves as unworthy of eternal
life.27 He makes those who do respond into a new nation who
live their lives entirely for Him. Those who obey Him fully will never see
death at all, not even the first death.28 In eternity they
will be citizens of the Holy City,29 still part of
the holy nation that they entered in this age.30 They
will rule with Messiah Yahshua over the nations in the never-ending