When I was a young boy, one word often tormented me – Eternity. I could hear sermons about God, about sin, about judgment, or even about the devil, and it didn’t put me up nor down. But when the pastor started preaching on eternity, that rocked my world. It didn’t matter if he spoke of the foreverness of heaven or the foreverness of hell, it was the concept of foreverness that deeply disturbed me for days – and nights.

I think it was because the idea of eternity is so different to our experience of life in this earth where everything has an end; both good things and bad things eventually come to an end. But eternity brought me into a dimension, a realm, where nothing ever ended.

I believe God used that one word, eternity, (and its siblings like everlasting, forever, etc.) to convict me of my spiritual need and to cultivate spiritual concern. And now that I am a preacher myself, I find myself often returning to the same theme, hoping and praying that it will have the same effect on others as it did on me. As one year ends and another begins, it’s a good time to consider what is “everlasting.”

Bad things that will last forever

Everlasting Punishment (Matthew 25:46): Implies infinite crime

Everlasting Destruction (2 Thess.1 :9):  Destruction not of being but of well-being

Everlasting Darkness (Jude 10) – A night with no moon, no stars, and no morning

Everlasting Fire­ (Matthew 18:8): Causes everlasting weeping, wailing, gnashing of teeth

Everlasting Contempt (Daniel 12:2): Despised, belittled, and disregarded

Everlasting Confusion (Jer.20: 11): Disorder, disorganization, chaos, unpredictability

Everlasting Chains (Jude 6): Bondage, limitation, oppression, powerlessness

Everlasting Worm (Mark 9:44): Worm of conscience gnawing and chewing away forever

Good things that will last forever ­

Everlasting Kindness (Isa.54: 8): Not sporadic and spasmodic

Everlasting Salvation (Isa.45: 17): Not just physical/temporary deliverances, but spiritual/eternal

Everlasting Light (lsa.60: 19): A morning with no cloud, no sunset, and no night

Everlasting Consolation (2 Thess.2:16): Healing, comfort, warmth, peace, relaxation

Everlasting Love (Jer. 31:3): A love with no beginning or end

Everlasting Kingdom (Dan. 4:3): Because of an everlasting King

Everlasting Arms (Dt.33:27): Arms = defense, protection, support, strength

Everlasting Joy (Isa. 51:11): Unending smiles, laughter, delight, happiness

Everlasting Covenant (Isa. 55:3): Promises that will never be broken, no matter the circumstances

Everlasting Name (Isa. 56:5): How can you get a better name than a son or daughter of God?

Everlasting Life (Matt. 19:29): Infinite in quantity and quality

  • David Jennifer Roelofs

    Dr. Murray, this really touched home. You have taken the words right out of my own mouth. Thank you for this post.