People are either saved or perish

In trying to show that all men would be saved, someone pointed out that the word translated as “perish” (Apollumi) in 2 Thessalonians 2:10 is the same word translated as “lost” in Luke 19:10.

Yes, it is the same word. But to understand the word in context, we need to take a look at its definition. Apollumi means:

  1. to destroy
    1. to put out of the way entirely, abolish, put an end to ruin
    2. render useless
    3. to kill
    4. to declare that one must be put to death
    5. metaph. to devote or give over to eternal misery in hell
    6. to perish, to be lost, ruined, destroyed
  2. to destroy
    1. to lose

Now let us look at the different places in scripture where this word is used:

Matthew 2:13 “destroy”

13 Now when they had gone, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, “Get up! Take the Child and His mother and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you; for Herod is going to search for the Child to destroy Him.”

Matthew 5:29 “lose”

29 “If your right eye makes you stumble, tear it out and throw it from you; for it is better for you to lose one of the parts of your body, than *for your whole body to be thrown into hell.

Matthew 8:25 “perishing”

25 And they came to Him and woke Him, saying, “Save us, Lord ; we are perishing !”

Matthew 9:17 “ruined”

17 “Nor do people put new wine into old wineskins ; otherwise the wineskins burst, and the wine pours out and the wineskins are ruined ; but they put new wine into fresh wineskins, and both are preserved.”

Matthew 10:6 “lost”

6 but rather go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.

Matthew 10:28 “destroy”

28 “Do not fear those who kill the body but are unable *to kill the soul ; but rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.

Matthew 10:39 “lose” and “lost”

39 “He who has found his life will lose it, and he who has lost his life for My sake will find it.

Matthew 10:42 “lose”

42 “And whoever *in the name of a disciple gives to one of these little ones even a cup of cold water to drink, truly I say to you, he shall not lose his reward.”

Matthew 12:14 “destroy”

14 But the Pharisees went out and conspired *against Him, as to how they might destroy Him.

Matthew 15:24 “lost”

24 But He answered and said, “I was sent only **to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”

Matthew 16:25 “lose” and “loses”

25 “For whoever *wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever *loses his life for My sake will find it.

Matthew 18:11 “lost”

11 [“For the Son of Man has come to save that which was lost.]

Matthew 18:14 “perish”

14 “So it is not the will of your Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones perish.

Matthew 21:41 “bring” – in context means destroy

41 They said to Him, “He will bring those wretches to a wretched end, and will rent out the vineyard to other vine-growers who will pay him the proceeds at the proper seasons.”

Matthew 22:7 “destroyed”

7 “But the king was enraged, and he sent his armies and destroyed those murderers and set their city on fire.

Matthew 26:52 “perish”

52 Then Jesus said to him, “Put your sword back into its place ; for all those who take up the sword shall perish by the sword.

Matthew 27:20 “death”

20 But the chief priests and the elders persuaded the crowds to ask for Barabbas and to put Jesus to death.

Mark 1:24 “destroy”

24 saying, “What business do we have with each other, Jesus of Nazareth ? Have You come to destroy us? I know who You are-the Holy One of God !”

Mark 2:22 “lost”

22 “No one puts new wine into old wineskins ; otherwise the wine will burst the skins, and the wine is lost and the skins as well; but one puts new wine into fresh wineskins.”

Mark 3:6 “destroy”

6 The Pharisees went out and immediately began conspiring with the Herodians against Him, as to how they might destroy Him

Mark 4:38 “perishing”

38 Jesus Himself was in the stern, asleep on the cushion ; and they woke Him and said to Him, “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing ?”

Mark 8:35 “lose” and “loses”

35 “For whoever *wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever *loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it.

Mark 9:22 “destroy”

22 “It has often thrown him both into the fire and into the water to destroy him. But if You can do anything, take pity on us and help us!”

Mark 9:41 “lose’

41 “For whoever *gives you a cup of water to drink because of your name as followers of Christ, truly I say to you, he will not lose his reward.

Mark 11:18 “destroy”

18 The chief priests and the scribes heard this, and began seeking how to destroy Him; for they were afraid of Him, for the whole crowd was astonished at His teaching.

Mark 12:9 “destroy”

9 “What will the owner of the vineyard do ? He will come and destroy the vine-growers, and will give the vineyard to others.

Luke 4:34 “destroy”

34 “Let us alone ! What business do we have with each other, Jesus of Nazareth ? Have You come to destroy us? I know who You are-the Holy One of God !”

Luke 5:37 “ruined”

37 “And no one puts new wine into old wineskins ; otherwise the new wine will burst the skins and it will be spilled out, and the skins will be ruined.

Luke 6:9 “destroy”

9 And Jesus said to them, “I ask you, is it lawful to do good or to do harm on the Sabbath, to save a life or to destroy it?”

Luke 8:24 “perishing”

24 They came to Jesus and woke Him up, saying, “Master, Master, we are perishing !” And He got up and rebuked the wind and the surging waves, and they stopped, and it became calm.

Luke 9:24-25 “lose” and “loses”

24 “For whoever *wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever *loses his life for My sake, he is the one who will save it. 25 “For what is a man profited if he gains the whole world, and loses or forfeits himself ?

Luke 9:56 “destroy”

56 for the Son of Man did not come to destroy men’s lives, but to save them.”] And they went on to another village.

Luke 11:51 “killed”

51 from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah, who was killed between the altar and the house of God; yes, I tell you, it shall be charged against this generation.’

Luke 13:3 “perish”

3 “I tell you, no, but unless *you repent, you will all likewise perish.

Luke 13:5 “perish”

5 “I tell you, no, but unless *you repent, you will all likewise perish.”

Luke 13:33 “perish”

33 “Nevertheless I must journey on today and tomorrow and the next day; for it cannot *be that a prophet would perish outside of Jerusalem.

Luke 15:4 “lost”

4 “What man among you, if he has a hundred sheep and has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine *in the open pasture and go after the one which is lost until he finds it?

Luke 15:6 “lost”

6 “And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and his neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost !’

Luke 15:8-9 “loses” and “lost”

8 “Or what woman, if she has ten silver coins and loses one coin, does not light a lamp and sweep the house and search carefully until she finds it? 9 “When she has found it, she calls together her friends and neighbors, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the coin which I had lost !’

Luke 15:17 “dying”

17 “But when he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired men have more than enough bread, but I am dying here with hunger !

Luke 15:24 “lost”

24 for this son of mine was dead and has come to life again ; he was lost and has been found.’ And they began to celebrate.

Luke 15:32 “lost”

32 ‘But we had to celebrate and rejoice, for this brother of yours was dead and has begun to live, and was lost and has been found.’ “

Luke 17:27 “destroyed”

27 they were eating, they were drinking, they were marrying, they were being given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all.

Luke 17:29 “destroyed”

29 but on the day that Lot went out from Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven and destroyed them all.

Luke 17:33 “lose” and “loses”

33 “Whoever *seeks to keep his life will lose it, and whoever *loses his life will preserve it.

Luke 19:10 “lost”

10 “For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.”

Luke 19:47 “destroy”

47 And He was teaching daily *in the temple ; but the chief priests and the scribes and the leading men among the people were trying to destroy Him

Luke 20:16 “destroy”

16 “He will come and destroy these vine-growers and will give the vineyard to others.” When they heard it, they said, “May it never be!”

Luke 21:18 “perish”

18 “Yet not a hair of your head will perish.

John 3:16 “perish”

16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.

John 6:12 “lost”

12 When they were filled, He said to His disciples, “Gather up the leftover fragments so that nothing will be lost.”

John 6:27 “perishes”

27 “Do not work for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you, for on Him the Father, God, has set His seal.”

John 6:39 “lose”

39 “This is the will of Him who sent Me, that of all that He has given Me I lose nothing, but raise it up on the last day.

John 10:10 “destroy”

10 “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy ; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.

John 10:28 “perish”

28 and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish ; and no one will snatch them out of My hand.

John 11:50 “perish”

50 nor do you take into account that it is expedient for you that one man die for the people, and that the whole nation not perish.”

John 12:25 “loses”

25 “He who loves his life loses it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it to life eternal.

John 17:12 “perished”

12 “While I was with them, I was keeping them in Your name which You have given Me; and I guarded them and not one of them perished but the son of perdition, so that the Scripture would be fulfilled.

John 18:9 “lost”

9 to fulfill the word which He spoke, “Of those whom You have given Me I lost not one.”

Acts 5:37 “perished”

37 “After this man, Judas of Galilee rose up in the days of the census and drew away some people after him; he too perished, and all those who followed him were scattered.

Acts 27:34 “perish”

34 “Therefore I encourage you to take some food, for this is for your preservation, for not a hair from the head of any of you will perish.”

Romans 2:12 “perish”

12 For all who have sinned without the Law will also perish without the Law, and all who have sinned under the Law will be judged by the Law ;

Romans 14:15 “destroy”

15 For if because of food your brother is hurt, you are no longer walking according to love. Do not destroy with your food him for whom Christ died.

1 Corinthians 1:18-19 “perishing” and “destroy”

18 For the word of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 19 For it is written, “I WILL DESTROY THE WISDOM OF THE WISE, AND THE CLEVERNESS OF THE CLEVER I WILL SET ASIDE.”

1 Corinthians 8:11 “ruined”

11 For through your knowledge he who is weak is ruined, the brother for whose sake Christ died.

1 Corinthians 10:9-10 “destroyed”

9 Nor let us try the Lord, as some of them did, and were destroyed by the serpents. 10 Nor grumble, as some of them did, and were destroyed by the destroyer.

1 Corinthians 15:16-19 “perished”

16 For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised ; 17 and if Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless ; you are still in your sins. 18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. 19 If we have hoped in Christ in this life only, we are of all men most to be pitied.

2 Corinthians 2:15 “perishing”

15 For we are a fragrance of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing ;

2 Corinthians 4:3 “perishing”

And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing,

2 Corinthians 4:9 “destroyed”

9 persecuted, but not forsaken ; struck down, but not destroyed

2 Thessalonians 2:10 as “perish”

10 and with all the deception of wickedness for those who perish, because *they did not receive the love of the truth so as to be saved.

Hebrews 1:11 “perish”


James 1:11 “destroyed”

11 For the sun rises with a scorching wind and withers the grass ; and its flower falls off and the beauty of its appearance is destroyed ; so too the rich man in the midst of his pursuits will fade away.

James 4:12 “destroy”

12 There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the One who is able to save and to destroy ; but who are you who judge your neighbor ?

1 Peter 1:7 “perishable”

7 so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ ;

2 Peter 3:6 “destroyed”

6 through which the world at that time was destroyed, being flooded with water.

2 Peter 3:9 “perish”

9 The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.

2 John 1:8 “lose”

8 Watch yourselves, that you do not lose what we have accomplished, but that you may receive a full reward.

Jude 1:5 “destroyed”

5 Now I desire to remind you, though you know all things once for all, that the Lord, after saving a people out of the land of Egypt, subsequently destroyed those who did not believe.

Jude 1:11 “perished'”

11 Woe to them! For they have gone the way of Cain, and for pay they have rushed headlong into the error of Balaam, and perished in the rebellion of Korah.

Just as the opposite of lost is found (Matthew 10:39; Luke 15:6; Luke 15:8-9; Luke 15:24; Luke 15:32), so It is abundantly evident that the opposite of save is destroy or perish (Luke 9:56; Luke 19:10; 1 Corinthians 1:18-19; 2 Corinthians 2:15; 2 Thessalonians 2:10; James 4:12). So people are either saved (and have eternal life) or they perish (and have “the punishment of eternal fire” – as we see in Jude 1:7).

Jude 1:7

In a similar way, Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding towns gave themselves up to sexual immorality and perversion. They serve as an example of those who suffer the punishment of eternal fire.


3 Responses

  1. careful now. You’ll end up being told you’re way too harsh if you keep talking like that.

    Your post looks a lot like mine (minus all the scriptural itemization.).

    Thanks for being bold enough to sacrifice popularity in favor of the truth. May God bless you come “That Day” with peace and eternity.

  2. It’s not so much a certain post as it is an open conversation regarding hell and the certainty of what the unforgiven can expect. It’s not a very popular subject. to the Christian, it’s a wonderful topic. For it reminds us of what we are rescued from. To the world it’s, “the stench of death”.

    I am not given to drawing back from portraying the state the lost can expect. Others might speak of soft things. By His Grace, I cannot.

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