Spiritual Terrorism
Christianity Without Insanity
Boyd C. Purcell, Ph.D. www.HealingSpiritualTerrorism.com and www.ChristianityWithoutInsanity.com
Symbolic Fire in the Holy Bible

Truth of Symbolic Fire in the Holy Bible Revealed A thru Z

A-ll in hell salted with fire [mixed metaphor for purified, Good News Bible] (Mk. 9:49).

B-uilding Christ’s church, that will destroy Hades/hell [“gates of hell not prevail”] (Mt. 16:18).

C-hrist baptizes with the Holy Spirit and with fire (Mt. 3:11).

D-evouring fire is like the tongue and burning sulfur the breath of God (Isa. 30:27, 33).

E-very believer’s works/deeds will be tested/refined by fire (I Cor. 3:10-14).

F-aith is tried/tested by fire…unto praise and honor at appearing of Christ (I Peter 1:7).

G-od is a consuming fire who burns with anger (Dt. 4:24; Heb. 12:29; Isaiah 30:27).

H-oly Spirit descended on the day of Pentecost like/as tongues of fire (Acts 2:3).

I-sraelites enslaved in iron furnace (Dt. 4:20), God, by night, led forth to freedom in/as pillar of fire (Ex. 13:21).

J-esus sending fire on earth burning chaff with unquenchable fire (Lk. 12:49; Mt. 3:12).

K-now God was in the burning bush, speaking to Moses, making ground holy (Ex. 3:2-5).

L-ove of God and God as fire cannot be antithetical; they must be mutually complementary (I John 4:8; Dt. 4:24; Heb. 12:29).

M-essiah/Christ’s refining fire will purify the Jewish people (Mal. 3:3).

N-othing more encouraging than fiery trials of life causing rejoicing (I Peter 4:12-13).

0-xymoronic: God’s infinite mercy [KJV] and eternal torture in literal hell fire (Ps. 136).

P-ersons: ministers/messengers of God are flames of fire (Heb. 1:7).

Q-uality of life on earth transformed by works/deeds being burned up (II Peter 3:10).

R-iver/stream of fire flows from the throne of God (Dan. 7:10).

S-heol/hell permeated with God’s fiery presence, since God is omnipresent (Ps.139:7-8).

T-hrone of God is fiery flames (Dan. 7:9), and in heaven is fiery sea of glass (Rev. 15:2).

U-nquenchable fire burns out as all fires do (Jer. 7:20; 17:27; Ez. 20:47-48; Mk. 9:43-48).

V-erily, the seven lamps/flames are the seven spirits of God (Rev. 4:5).

W-ord of God is like fire (Jer. 23:29) and burns in human hearts (Luke 24:32).

X-P: first two letters of Greek word for “Christ” whose eyes are flames of fire (Rev. 1:14).

Y-es, believers, saved [behavior refined] thru fire at Christ’s Judgment Seat (I Cor. 3:15).

Z-echariah, the prophet, declared the Lord will be a wall of fire around Jerusalem (2:5).


Christian Fundamentalists contend the Bible is literally true. This, of course, especially applies to the doctrine of hell fire. Based on the Biblical evidence [A—Z above], nothing could be further from the truth!” There are two Greek words that are essential to correctly interpreting Jesus’ parables. They are “exegesis” and “eisegesis,” the former meaning to read out of what is actually in the text, while the latter means to read into the text what is not there. In the parable of the Rich Man there is often more eisegesis than exegesis that results in the erroneous claim Jesus taught eternal conscious torment in literal hell fire. 

It has been wisely stated the best commentary on The Holy Bible is the Bible itself. Thus, let us look at what Jesus taught about Hades in the Gospel of Matthew. Our Lord declared that He would build His church, and the gates of Hades/hell would not prevail against it (16:18). This teaching of Jesus is in the form of a war metaphor in which any city of significant size had a wall built around it with large gates to close and barricade when an enemy army attacked. Such a city might need to be besieged for months or years in order to weaken it enough to bring in a battering ram, ram down the gates, and capture the city. In this parable the church is like a mighty army, and Hades/Hell is the walled city. Since the church shall destroy Hades/Hell, no one can be in Hades/Hell forever, as evidenced by all freely bowing and confessing Jesus is Lord to God’s glory (Phil. 2:9-11). People do not need to live in fear but can rejoice in their own, loved ones’, and neighbors’ salvation, since Jesus commanded us to love our neighbors as ourselves!