In “the end of sin” Jefferson Vann shares his translation of Isaiah 66, and shows that it does not predict a never ending hell, but an actual destruction of sinners in hell.
Isaiah 66 (JDV)
Isaiah 66:1 Thus says Yahveh: The sky is my throne and the land is my footstool; where is this house that you would build for me, and where is this — my resting place?
Isaiah 66:2 All these things my hand has made, and so all these things are mine already, says Yahveh. But this is the one to whom I will show regard to, to the humble and contrite in breath, who is anxious about keeping my word.
Isaiah 66:3 Whoever merely slaughters an ox is like one who kills a human being; whoever merely sacrifices a lamb, like one who breaks a dog’s neck; whoever presents a grain offering, like one who offers swine’s blood; whoever makes a memorial offering of frankincense, like one who blesses an idol. These have chosen their own ways, and their souls take pleasure in their detested things;
Isaiah 66:4 I will choose to mistreat them too, and bring upon them what they are terrified of; because, when I called, no one answered, when I spoke, they did not listen; instead they did what was evil while I looked on, and whatever did not please me, that is what they chose.
Isaiah 66:5 Listen to this word from Yahveh, you who are anxious about keeping his word: Your own people who hate you and exclude you for my name’s sake have said, Let Yahveh show his glory, so that we may see why you are joyful; but it is they who will be put to shame.
Isaiah 66:6 Listen, an uproar from the city! A voice from the temple! The voice of Yahveh, dealing retribution to his enemies!
Isaiah 66:7 Before she was in labour she gave birth; before her pain came upon her she delivered a son.
Isaiah 66:8 Who has heard of such a thing? Who has seen such things? Can a land be born in one day? Can a nation be delivered in one moment? Yet as soon as Zion was in labour she delivered her children.
Isaiah 66:9 Will I open the womb and not deliver? says Yahveh; will I, the one who delivers, shut the womb? says your God.
Isaiah 66:10 Rejoice with Jerusalem, and be glad for her, all you who love her; rejoice with her with joy, all you who are mourning over her–
Isaiah 66:11 to testify that you will nurse and be satisfied from her consoling breast; that you may drink deeply with delight from her glorious full breast.
Isaiah 66:12 Because this is what Yahveh says: I will extend wholeness to her like a river, and the wealth of the nations like a stream overflowing; and you will nurse and be carried on her side, and rocked back and forth on her knees.
Isaiah 66:13 Like a mother calms her child, that is how I will calm you; you in Jerusalem will experience this calm.
Isaiah 66:14 You will see, and your heart will rejoice; your bodies will flourish like the vegetation; and it will be known that the hand of Yahveh is with his servants, and his indignation is against his enemies.
Isaiah 66:15 Because you will watch Yahveh come in fire, and his chariots like the storm wind, to pay back his anger in fury, and his rebuke in flames of fire.
Isaiah 66:16 Because Yahveh will execute judgment by fire, and by his sword, on all flesh; and those slain by Yahveh will be numerous.
Isaiah 66:17 Those enemies who sanctify and purify themselves to go into the gardens, following the one in the centre, eating the meat of pigs, detestable things, and mice, will come to an end together, says Yahveh.
Isaiah 66:18 Because I know what they are doing and what they are thinking, I am coming to gather people from all nations and language groups; and they will come and will see my glory,
Isaiah 66:19 and I will perform a miraculous sign among them. I will send escapees from them to the nations, to Tarshish, Put, and Lud– which draw the bow– to Tubal and Javan, to the distant coastlands that have not heard about my fame or seen my glory; and they will declare my glory among these nations.
Isaiah 66:20 They will bring all your relatives from all the nations as an offering to Yahveh, on horses, and in chariots, and in canopied wagons, and on mules, and on dromedaries, to my holy mountain Jerusalem, says Yahveh, just like when the Israelites bring a grain offering in a ceremonially clean container to the temple of Yahveh.
Isaiah 66:21 And I will take some of them to be priests and as Levites as well, says Yahveh.
Isaiah 66:22 Because like the new sky and the new land, which I am making, will stay in my presence, says Yahveh; so your descendants and your name will stay.
Isaiah 66:23 At it will happen consistently, from one new moon to the next new moon, and from one Sabbath to the next Sabbath, all flesh will come to worship in my presence, says Yahveh.
Isaiah 66:24 And they will exit and look at the dead bodies of the men who had rebelled against me; because their worm will not die, their fire will not be quenched, and they will be a repugnance to all flesh.
the end of sin
The prophet’s words end with a mixture of hope and horror. While God is calling his own, and all the nations to himself, he is also warning that “those slain by the LORD shall be many.” The devouring fire and worms cannot be stopped, which is not a sign of “unending judgment” (ESV Study Bible notes), but a sign that the dead bodies will be unable to prevent their destruction. Those who go out and look on the dead bodies of the rebellious will have a sure witness that the LORD’s victory is final. No more rebellion, no more sin.
LORD, thank you for making an ultimate end of sin.