THE TEACHING OF THE SCRIPTURES about the eons provides answers to frustrating questions concerning the meaning of human existence. God’s purpose in creating man, and God’s purpose of the eons are inseparably related. Many are unfamiliar with this important subject because the facts have been concealed by incorrect and misleading translations of the Bible from the original languages into English.
The eons are the longest periods of time referred to in the Scriptures. Time-wise they are of indefinite duration, but event-wise they are distinctly marked off by great cataclysms which affect the whole earth.
THE EONS HAVE A BEGINNING
The words “eon” and “eonian” occur 199 times in the New Testament. They are translated as follows in the King James Version:
The fact that the same word translated “for ever”; “ever-lasting,” and “eternal” is also translated “world” is a shocking surprise to many believers. Had God meant “world” in these places He would have used the Greek word “kosmos” which means world. In the best literal translations the words “aion” and “aionios” are consistently rendered “age” and “age-abiding” or transliterated “eon” and “eonian.” See Rotherham’s Emphasized Version; Young’s Literal Translation; or The Concordant Literal New Testament.
God made the eons (Heb.1:2) and fitted them out (Heb.11:3) for the accomplishing of His purpose (Eph.3:8-11; 1:9-11). During the eonian times, sin, suffering and death enter God’s creation, serve their purpose and are abolished by Jesus Christ (1Tim.4:9-11; Col.1:20; 1Cor.15:22-28; Rom.5:18,19; Phil. 2:9-11; John 12:32,33; 1John 3:8).
The existence of God is not confined to the eons. He made the eons; therefore, He existed before they began. At the conclusion of the eons Jesus Christ will do away with sin (Heb.9:26) and will abolish death (1 Cor.15:22-26). All will then be subjected to God and God will be All in all (1 Cor.15:27,28). Therefore, God continues to exist after the eons have ended. The statement “from everlasting to everlasting thou art God” (Psa.90:2) is literally “from age to age thou art God.” This does not limit God’s existence to the eons any more than the statement, “I am the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob” (Ex.3:6), excludes Him from being the God of others also. The same is true of the reference to Him as “the eonian God” (Rom.16:25,26).
During the present wicked eon (Gal.1:4), Sin reigns, Satan who is said to be “the god of this eon” (2 Cor.4:4) blinds and deceives mankind, and death swallows up the race (1 Cor.15:22). But notwithstanding, God is over all and is in supreme control. He is the eonian God. In due time He will deliver the entire creation and bring good out of all the suffering mankind is called upon to endure (Rom.8;18-23).
Neither is it true that if the eons end, the life of believers in Christ must end. Believers do receive eonian life. But if this is all that God promised, there would be no assurance of life beyond the eons. However, at the end of the eons God abolishes death from His universe (1 Cor.15:26). This is accomplished by imparting the resurrection life of Christ to all who have not previously received it. Eonian life assures one of life up to that point. Beyond that, death is impossible. Furthermore, believers are made immortal when the Lord returns (1 Cor.15:50-57). When one has been made immortal, death is impossible.
In the Greek Scriptures endlessness is never expressed in terms of eons or of that which is eonian. The Scriptures never speak of “the endless eons of eternity.” Endlessness is expressed by the use of negatives: “not,” “no not,” “un,” “less.” For example: “Of His kingdom there shall be no end” ouk estai telos (Luke 1:33); “endless life” akatalutou (Heb.7:16); “endless genealogies” aperantois (1 Tim.1:4); “nevermore” ou me eti (Rev.18:21-23).
EON TWICE IN THE SAME PHRASE
words in parenthesis ( ) below = K.J.V.
– Joseph E. Kirk