Q: What does the analysis of the Greek text indicate for “continuous wrath” against the “object”(person who disbelieves) in Christ?

Put it another way: Does the Greek text show from John 3:36 that the rejector of Christ has abiding wrath on him in such a way to prove against annihilation? Or does such evidence for an anti-annihilation doctrine via John 3:36 find to be insufficient via the Greek?

Some might say: “the wrath of God certainly abides on him who rejects Christ, but the wrath burns him out of existence!” Hence the question I asked!

The wrath of God “remaining” on someone sounds to me even in the English to show that eternal conscious punishment is a exegetical & experiential reality.

“The one who believes in the Son has eternal life. The one who rejects the Son will not see life, but God’s wrath remains on him.” ‭‭John‬ ‭3:36‬ ‭NET‬‬

“He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.”” ‭‭John‬ ‭3:36‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

“The one who believes in the Son has eternal life, but the one who disobeys the Son will not see life—but the wrath of God remains on him.” ‭‭John‬ ‭3:36‬ ‭LEB

“Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever disobeys the Son will not see life, but must endure God's wrath.” ‭‭John‬ ‭3:36‬ ‭NRSV‬‬

  • Are you not "scraping the bottom of the barrel" to find support for your contention? God's wrath remains on the person just as Sodom and Gomorrah suffered eternal fire - fire that did not go out until all was consumed. Jude 7.
    – Dottard
    Jan 21, 2022 at 20:27
  • @Dottard I never said you had to answer it Dottard. ;p. Yet, even some would say Jude 7 means that the fire merely burned them away eternally, rather than reach the truth about the eternal punishment of the wicked.
    – Cork88
    Jan 21, 2022 at 20:38
  • ... and I never said you did.
    – Dottard
    Jan 21, 2022 at 20:39
  • 1
    Where do we learn about the eternal punishing of the wicked?
    – Dottard
    Jan 22, 2022 at 3:20
  • 1
    @Dottard I've been saved for about 10 years now, I believe scripture too. Believers can err with respect to Scripture interpretation. It's obvious that eternal destruction is 1 angle of Hell, another Angle is the furnace of fire(Matt 13) where there is weeping and gnashing of teeth. You also haven't addressed the obvious as I said before: Annihilation is: Aphanizo – ἀφανίζω, which means: to remove out of sight, disappear, vanish away. 2 Thess 1:9 Does NOT use "Aphanizo" so those who are punished with everlasting destruction are in a continual state of ruin. It appears you are incorrect.
    – Cork88
    Jan 22, 2022 at 17:30

1 Answer 1


JOHN 3:36 He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.”

For the most part, the ‘Greek’ is accurately translated, it is pretty straightforward. BUT - The only real part of the Greek that could be ‘argued’ is the translation of ‘on’ - [Greek] ‘epi’ - “the wrath of God abides on him.”

Arguably that should possibly be translated as ‘in’, that is, “the wrath of God abides in him.” But then it would ‘comfortably’ traditional doctrine - but it would better fit Biblical doctrine, namely that of the apostle Paul.

ROMANS 1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them.

Paul explains that [the sense of , or feeling’ of] Gods wrath is an inward intuition. Something that ‘man’ [intuitively] ‘perceives’.

So that one Greek word which can legitimately be translated as either ‘in’, or ‘on’, makes a significant difference. One had God as the originator of that wrath, the other has ‘man’s’ own separated spirit as the originator of that wrath. Huge difference!

Man’s ‘separated’ therefore/thereby ‘unrighteous’ spirit ‘senses’ that unrighteousness, therefore will know it is deserving of Gods wrath - whereas God only has Love for man.

  • Some things you said I find confusing, other things you said make sense. Would you say that such a verse does indeed prove against annihilation? Could you clarify since it was part of my question? ;)
    – Cork88
    Jan 22, 2022 at 0:34
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    @Cork88 Man (man’s ‘spirit’) is eternal. The difference for believers is that they have eternal life.
    – Dave
    Jan 22, 2022 at 1:47
  • ἐπί with the dative can mean "in", but not with the accusative. So it cannot legitimately be translated as "in" or "on" arbitrarily. Jan 22, 2022 at 13:19
  • @DanielRidings That’s interesting - so what is your understanding that it (epi) should or could be in this verse? (John 3:36)
    – Dave
    Jan 22, 2022 at 18:56
  • @Dave My understanding? Pretty much the way you introduced your answer, that the translations in general are accurate. I haven't given it a lot of thought, but if we picture wrath as being something other than anthropomorphic, then there are a myriad of ways wrath could be materialized on someone. Jan 23, 2022 at 4:42

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