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Torment definition is - extreme pain or anguish of body or mind : agony. Some Eastern Orthodox Christians believe that Heaven and Hell are relations to or experiences of God's just and loving presence. One historic Protestant view of hell is expressed in the Westminster Confession (1646): According to the Alliance Commission on Unity & Truth among Evangelicals (ACUTE) the majority of Protestants have held that hell will be a place of perpetual conscious torment, both physical and spiritual. For those who hate the Lord, the same Presence will be infinite torture, hell and eternal death. Before arguing for one meaning of death and against another, it is important to understand the opposing view. Genesis 37:35; Numbers 16:30-33; Psalm 86:13; Ecclesiastes 9:10). Stay tuned for one more blog where I’ll try to wrap things up. The New Testament also uses the Greek word hades, usually to refer to the abode of the dead (e.g., Acts 2:31; Revelation 20:13). For those whose "all" is themselves and this world, the "all" of God will be their torture, their punishment and their death. In the Greek Septuagint, the Hebrew word Sheol was translated as Hades,[citation needed] the name for the underworld and abode of the dead in Greek mythology. Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the Kingdom of their Father. The existence of hell, as the everlasting abode of the devils and those human beings who have died in the state of mortal sin, is a defined dogma of the Catholic Church" (Baker, "Fundamentals of Catholicism" (1983), volume 3, p. 371). Saint John Chrysostom pictured Hell as associated with "unquenchable" fire and "various kinds of torments and torrents of punishment".[41]. 1:12, Prov. In short, terminal punishment does not clearly spring from every single passage about future judgment, but it does seem to be the best reading of the large majority of them. Rev. Notice that there are five necessary elements to the traditional view of hell: a place in the afterlife, "[61] Evangelicals Norman L. Geisler and Ralph E. MacKenzie interpret official Roman Catholic teaching as: "Hell is a place or state of eternal punishment inhabited by those rejected by God. First, they widely hold that immediately following a human being's physical death, his or her surviving spiritual dimension experiences a foretaste of either heaven or hell. (I Timothy 6:16) For those who love God and who love all creation in him, the "consuming fire" of God will be radiant bliss and unspeakable delight. Biblical Arguments for Eternal Conscious Torment. I don’t know. These verses, it is argued, indicate that death is only a period or form of slumber. [95], Christian Science defines "hell" as follows: "Mortal belief; error; lust; remorse; hatred; revenge; sin; sickness; death; suffering and self-destruction; self-imposed agony; effects of sin; that which 'worketh abomination or maketh a lie.' In this view, the unredeemed dead suffer for all eternity in flames of fire. snuffed out in the Lake of Fire (Revelation 21:15) and cease to exist for all eternity. 15:11, Prov. The Conditional Immortality Association of New Zealand Inc. 7:15 +; Rev. [18][91] A phenomenalist view of immortality[92] holds that there would be no experiential difference between eternal hell and limited conscious punishment. [25][28] For one who hates God and by extension hates himself as God's image-bearer, to be encompassed by the divine presence could only result in unspeakable anguish. Conscious definition, aware of one's own existence, sensations, thoughts, surroundings, etc. Before we proceed, here is an abbreviation: ECT = Eternal, Conscious Torment (the traditional view). These words include: In ancient Jewish belief, the dead were consigned to Sheol, a place to which all were sent indiscriminately (cf. This transformation takes place during the higher level of the stage of illumination called theoria, literally meaning vision-in this case vision by means of unceasing and uninterrupted memory of God. I’ve been exploring the debate between annihilationism and eternal conscious torment (ECT) in a series of blog posts. (St. Isaac of Syria, Mystic Treatises) The Orthodox Church of America website, "Paradise and Hell exist not in the form of a threat and a punishment on the part of God but in the form of an illness and a cure. In this post, I want to summarize the best arguments for eternal conscious torment (ECT)—the traditional view of hell where the wicked will experience never-ending punishment. The 'place' or 'location' of hell is secondary, and considerations of where it is should not deflect us from our most important concerns: what it is, and how to avoid it" (, "No cogent reason has been advanced for accepting a metaphorical interpretation in preference to the most natural meaning of the words of Scripture" (Hontheim in, "Theologians generally accept the opinion that hell is really within the earth" (Hontheim 1910). Featured Is the doctrine of Eternal Conscious Torment, biblical or not? . Eternal conscious torment is a fitting punishment for sin committed against a great and infinitely glorious God. 14:9-11. 23:33, Mark 9:43, Mark 9:45, Mark 9:47, Luke 12:5, Matt. 116:3, Psalm 139:8, Prov. Endless punishment is God's punishment. Sheol was thought of as a place situated below the ground (cf. The Church explains biblical descriptions of hell being "eternal" or "endless" punishment as being descriptive of their infliction by God rather than an unending temporal period. Created free for the sake of love, man possesses the incredible power to reject this love, to say 'no' to God. It’s the ONLY verse in the entire Bible where we find the word “eternal” beside the word “punishment”. Norman Geisler, a staunch adherent of eternal torment, objects to this practice of using torment and torture interchangeably. But Scripture says much more about the punishment of sin than these texts alone. Therefore, the eternal conscious torment view involves unconditional preservation of … [23] Conditionalists typically reject the traditional concept of the immortality of the soul. It is the "fire" of God's love; the "fire" of God himself who is love. In the Bible, in the Book of Revelation, John of Patmos writes about seeing a lake of fire where the 'beast' and all those marked with his number were placed. He was, of course, doing nothing of the sort. Geisler & MacKenzie, "Roman Catholics and Evangelicals: agreements and differences", p. 143 (1995). We shouldn’t read ECT into ever passage where “undying” is mentioned, or where we see the wicked being punished or suffering. The first, Traditionalism (sometimes called Eternal Conscious Torment or Infernalism), is the most widely recognized. Yes. "Hell is the natural consequence of a life lived apart from God. Some thought that the Pope, in the statement quoted above, was denying that Hell is a place in this sense. Certain biblical texts have led some theologians[who?] 32:21, Ezk. Different Hebrew and Greek words are translated as "Hell" in most English-language Bibles. In the eschatological discourse of Matthew 25:31-46, Jesus says that, when the Son of Man comes in his glory, he will separate people from one another as a shepherd separates sheep from goats, and will consign to everlasting fire those who failed to aid "the least of his brothers". However, they will see God's glory eventually, but as an eternal and consuming fire and outer darkness. Penguin Books, 1995, Lucy Margaret Smith. 12:10 +). But the burden of proof rests on those who interpret the image in Rev 14 in a manner different than its original meaning in Isa 34. Paul speaks of "wrath" and "everlasting destruction" (cf. Jesus here depicts a wicked man suffering fiery torment in hades, which is contrasted with the bosom of Abraham, and explains that it is impossible to cross over from one to the other. Q97 A4 flags discussion of the location of hell as speculation: As Augustine says (De Civ. Even if by "everlasting punishment" is meant "everlasting conscious torment", this passage in itself does not prove the eternal torment of the wicked since the Greek word, "aionios", can mean either limited or unlimited duration. Job 10:21). [83], In most Protestant traditions, hell is the place created by God for the punishment of the devil and fallen angels (cf. the Book of Enoch),[6] and by the time of Jesus, some Jews had come to believe that those in Sheol awaited the resurrection of the dead either in comfort (in the bosom of Abraham) or in torment. The Seventh-day Adventist Church believes that the concept of eternal suffering is incompatible with God's character and that He cannot torture His children. [80][81], The varying Protestant views of "hell", both in relation to Hades (i.e., the abode of the dead) and Gehenna (i.e., the destination of the wicked), are largely a function of the varying Protestant views on the intermediate state between death and resurrection; and different views on the immortality of the soul or the alternative, the conditional immortality. ), Jehovah's Witnesses do not believe in an immortal soul that survives after physical death. And they are different. Identity Politics vs. Transactional Politics. For example, John Calvin, who believed in conscious existence after death,[82] had a very different concept of hell (Hades and Gehenna) to Martin Luther who held that death was sleep. "[56][57] Journalist Richard Owen's interpretation of this remark as declaring that hell is an actual place was reported in many media. Sometimes venial sin, though needing first of all to be cleansed, is an obstacle to the receiving of the reward; the result being that the reward is delayed. Second, we have reason to believe that those in hell will continue in their rebellion against God for all eternity. [52] Some have rejected metaphorical interpretations of the biblical descriptions of hell,[53] and have attributed to Hell a location within the earth,[54] while others who uphold the opinion that hell is a definite place, say instead that its location is unknown. By Dr. David R. Reagan[read in Lamplighter (pdf)]The Bible presents Hell, like Heaven, as a real place. Pages 66–69 of John-Paul Himka's Last Judgment Iconography in the Carpathians provides an illustrated description of some such 15th-century Carpathian icons based on a northern Rus' prototype (p. 193). I believe that men will be brought into everlasting punishment (Matthew 25:46) that is conscious torment in a "furnace of fire", causative of wailing and gnashing of teeth (Matthew 13:41-42, Matthew 13:49-50). 14:10 + cf. First, the strongest passage that supports ECT is Matthew 25:46, which I’ve cited in the previous two blogs. "[45], Pope John Paul II stated on 28 July 1999, that, in speaking of Hell as a place, the Bible uses "a symbolic language", which "must be correctly interpreted … Rather than a place, hell indicates the state of those who freely and definitively separate themselves from God, the source of all life and joy. The basic meaning is that those who go to hell will hold on to their rejection of God and will suffer for their choice. Second, we have reason to believe that those in hell will … Unconscious definition, not conscious; without awareness, sensation, or cognition. 22:6, Job 11:8, Job 26:6, Psalm 9:17, Psalm 16:10, Psalm 18:5, Psalm 55:15, Psalm 86:13, Ps. [102] At these appointed times of resurrection, "death and hell" will deliver up the dead that are in them to be judged according to their works (Revelations 20:13), at which point all but the sons of perdition will receive a degree of glory, which Paul compared to the glory of the sun, moon, and stars (1 Corinthians 15:41). Conclusions and Recommendations", "Solving the Problem of Hell - Afterlife", "Are you an annihilationist, and if so, why? J. Those who are cured and those who are purified experience the illuminating energy of divine grace, while the uncured and ill experience the caustic energy of God.". [citation needed] Thus, there is no single "official" teaching of the Church apart from apostolic doctrine received and, when necessary, defined by Ecumenical Councils. The last part: Hades, a place of conscious torment ; jumped out to me almost automatically that we are talking about a “DUALITY” with the opposites of Lazarus and the rich man.. during life the rich man lived a lavish life but in death he is eternally tormented and in life, Lazarus is a poor man begging for food but in the afterlife he is in a blissful happy place of comfort and rest… 38:18, Ezek. In the past thirty years the doctrine of hell has been the subject of much controversy. [79] This view is often associated with the Protestant reformer John Calvin. 14:9, Isa. See more. Let me begin with some of the weaker, though common, arguments that are often given for ECT. Icons based on The Ladder of Divine Ascent, by Saint John Climacus, show monks ascending a thirty-rung ladder to Heaven represented by Christ, or succumbing to the arrows of demons and falling from the ladder into Hell, sometimes represented by an open-jawed dragon. On the contrary, the belief of hell as being eternal conscious torment. 57:9, Ezek. 9:18, Prov. "Those who have selfless love and are friends of God see God in light—Divine light, while the selfish and impure see God the judge as fire—darkness". Is this talking about some great rebellion during the first century, or during an end-time tribulation? They base this belief on biblical texts such as Ecclesiastes 9:5 which states "the dead know nothing", and 1 Thessalonians 4:13 which contains a description of the dead being raised from the grave at the second coming. 5:5, Prov. Again, I haven’t had time to examine all of these arguments or the many texts in detail. A minority of Protestants believe in the doctrine of conditional immortality,[90] which teaches that those sent to hell will not experience eternal conscious punishment, but instead will be extinguished or annihilated after a period of "limited conscious punishment". God simply reveals himself in the risen Lord Jesus in such a glorious way that no man can fail to behold his glory. Fox wrote: "Hell is a place or state of eternal punishment inhabited by those rejected by God because such souls have rejected God's saving grace. Kenneth Baker published by. Modern-day revelation clarifies that while there, Christ began the work of salvation for the dead by commissioning spirits of the righteous to teach the gospel to those who didn't have the opportunity to receive it while on earth.[99]. 20:15 +). The Christadelphian view is broadly similar to the Jehovah's Witness view, except for the fact that it teaches the belief that the resurrected will be judged for how they lived their lives before the resurrection. Columba of Iona is alleged to have on several occasions even been able to name particular individuals who he said were going to end life in hellfire for their sins and accurately predicted the way they would die before the event had even happened. Eternal Conscious Torment is too horrible and monstrous to be true Eternal Conscious Torment would mean that God is not just to punish finite sin infinitely God is holy and will not allow evil to exist forever. Rev. This verse, when I first read it, by itself, may very well have convinced me to have been an annihilationist. 28:15, Isa. But after the Lord led me in a prolonged period of studying this topic (mainly from the Bible, but also by reading the best arguments I could find from evangelicals with each view) I became thoroughly convinced that the Bible teaches something else. An interaction with theological, cultural, biblical, and political issues with scholarly bite but in layman's language. In Christian theology, Hell is the place or state into which, by God's definitive judgment, unrepentant sinners pass in the general judgment, or, as some Christians believe, immediately after death (particular judgment). all evil doers, and throw them into the furnace of fire", and that he will pronounce the condemnation: "Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire!" Jude 1:7 [113], Parables of Jesus concerning the hereafter, View of conditional immortality and annihilationism, The King James Version translates "ᾅδης" 9 times as "Hell" and once as "grave" (in, God himself is both heaven and hell, reward and punishment. People will be consigned to hell after the last judgment.[84]. Those who worshiped the Beast will be tormented forever and ever (Rev. Tartaro:Definition 1. The Destruction of the Finally Impenitent by Clark H. Pinnock, Jesus' Teaching on Hell by Samuel G. Dawson, at the Cornell University, PJ Mode Collection of Persuasive Cartography (Browse "Heaven and Hell" Category), https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Christian_views_on_Hell&oldid=991983298#Eternal_conscious_torment, Articles with dead external links from August 2017, Articles with permanently dead external links, Articles containing Ancient Greek (to 1453)-language text, Articles with unsourced statements from May 2019, Articles with unsourced statements from October 2011, Articles with unsourced statements from November 2011, All articles with specifically marked weasel-worded phrases, Articles with specifically marked weasel-worded phrases from May 2010, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Maps with Christian views on Hell can be found in the, This page was last edited on 2 December 2020, at 21:20. For those who love the Lord, his Presence will be infinite joy, paradise and eternal life. During various Marian apparitions, such as those at Fatima or at Kibeho, the visionaries claimed that the Virgin Mary during the course of the visions showed them a view of hell where sinners were suffering. See more. Imagine the predicament of one who both knows that God is the great love of his life, and that he has turned irreversably away from this love. Eternal conscious torment is immoral by nature To accuse God of enacting eternal conscious torment would make God immoral. God made hell to punish the devils or bad angels, and all who die in mortal sin. [59], The posthumous supplement to Aquinas' Summa theologiciae suppl. Maybe this is true, or maybe it’s not. When someone genuinely receives Christ and remains in union with him, hell becomes a nonissue. The Greek word "everlasting" there is the adjective aionion, which is related to the noun, aion meaning "age". [10]. [6] Only one passage describes hades as a place of torment, the parable of Lazarus and Dives (Luke 16:19-31). The word “destroy” doesn’t have to mean “annihilate.”, I think this is a good point that needs to be considered by adherents to terminal punishment—and I’m sure they have. [78], The Catholic Church, and the Catechism, repudiates the view commonly known as "double predestination" which claims that God not only chooses who will be saved, but that he also creates some people who will be doomed to damnation. Rev. Trust me: It’s been destroyed. How cruel and bitter this torment of love will be! In my previous post, I summarized some of the strongest biblical arguments in favor of terminal punishmen t. In this post, I want to summarize the best arguments for eternal conscious torment (ECT)—the traditional view of hell where the wicked will experience never-ending punishment. These verses, it is argued, indicate that death is only a period or form of slumber. It doesn’t specify the duration of that suffering. [42], And since a place is assigned to souls in keeping with their reward or punishment, as soon as the soul is set free from the body it is either plunged into hell or soars to heaven, unless it be held back by some debt, for which its flight must needs be delayed until the soul is first of all cleansed. 5:30, Matt. No verse in the Bible gives an expository description of what hell is or what it's about. (M. Kiddushin 4:14); also described in Assumption of Moses and 2 Esdras.[7]. [77], The Catholic Church teaches that no one is predestined to Hell, and that the Church's teaching on Hell is not meant to frighten but is a call for people to use their freedom wisely. ", Other Catholics neither affirm nor deny that Hell is a place, and speak of it as "a place or state". Annihilationism or Eternal Conscious Torment (ECT)? (Matthew 13:41-43) "Eternal salvation" is the result; we do not look for an eternal act of "saving." If John of Revelation 14 wants to use the Isa 34 image differently, he can certainly do so. [68], Saint Augustine of Hippo said that the suffering of hell is compounded because God continues to love the sinner who is not able to return the love. The key phrase is, “the smoke of their torment goes up forever and ever.” In this post, I want to summarize the best arguments for eternal conscious torment (ECT)—the traditional view of hell where the wicked will experience never-ending punishment. "[36] According to Theodore Stylianopoulos, "Hell is a spiritual state of separation from God and inability to experience the love of God, while being conscious of the ultimate deprivation of it as punishment. Oxford University Press, 1920. "[62], It is agreed that Hell is a place of suffering.[63][64][65]. Conscious definition, aware of one's own existence, sensations, thoughts, surroundings, etc. 14:15, Isa. Unconscious definition, not conscious; without awareness, sensation, or cognition. "[37] Michel Quenot stated: "Hell is none other than the state of separation from God, a condition into which humanity was plunged for having preferred the creature to the Creator. Those who believe in terminal punishment very much agree that there will be suffering and punishment in hell. In death, life and consciousness are gone. The Three Religious Factions That Missed... Masturbatory Worship and the Contemporary Church, 5 Reasons to Attend Eternity Bible College. Annihilationism is the belief that unredeemed souls will be “annihilated,” i.e. On the contrary, the belief of hell as being eternal conscious torment. And the angels who did not stay within their own position of authority, but left their proper dwelling, he has kept in eternal chains under gloomy darkness until the judgment of the great day— just as Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding cities, which likewise indulged in sexual immorality and pursued unnatural desire, serve as an example by undergoing a punishment of eternal fire. In my previous post, I summarized some of the strongest biblical arguments in favor of terminal punishment. Maybe pink bunnies would turn blue if I held them underwater for more than 7 minutes. How to Live by the Indwelling Life of Christ Click here to... Critical Race Theory Examined and Analyzed. 32:22, Deut. The dominant historic Christian view is that hell is a place of eternal conscious torment for rebellious, unbelieving humans (and demons and Satan). [47] Others have explicitly disagreed with the interpretation of what the Pope said as an actual denial that Hell can be considered a place and have said that the Pope was only directing attention away from what is secondary to the real essence of hell. As to "eternal conscious torment", there are a lot of differing views on it. A number of Catholic mystics and saints have claimed to have received visions of hell or other revelations concerning hell. But love acts in two ways, as suffering of the reproved, and as joy in the blessed! Burk’s selection of texts is a far cry from being ‘the relevant texts of Scripture on hell’, but is rather 10 passages that may teach eternal conscious torment (or at least elements of it). The depiction in these particular icons, a depiction that may have developed from 12th-century Greek and South Slavic depictions differentiating sinners and their punishments (p. 68), is referred to by Himka as "the new hell", "because various sinners are being punished in a squarish area with torments that did not appear in the standard Byzantine iconography" (p. 42). In its review, Publishers Weekly called the book "persuasively argued. "[38] Another writer declared: "The circumstances that rise before us, the problems we encounter, the relationships we form, the choices we make, all ultimately concern our eternal union with or separation from God. Eternal conscious torment is immoral by nature; To accuse God of enacting eternal conscious torment would make God immoral. And the smoke of their torment goes up forever and ever, and they have no rest, day or night, these worshipers of the beast and its image, and whoever receives the mark of its name.”. For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me. No verse in the Bible gives an expository description of what hell is or what it's about. "[71], In his book, Inventing Hell, Catholic writer and historian Jon M. Sweeney is critical of the ways that Christians have appropriated Dante's vision and images of hell. I’ve been to Edom. Not one of those passages says hell is eternal conscious torment. Hell is the place and state of eternal punishment for the fallen angels and human beings who die deliberately estranged from the love of God. [100] After the 1000 years known as the Millennium, the individuals in spirit prison who chose not to accept the gospel and repent[101] will also be resurrected and receive an immortal physical body, which is referred to as the "second resurrection". Second, if Jesus is going ...". [112] Based on verses like Matthew 16:27 and Romans 6:23 they believe the unsaved do not go to any place of punishment as soon as they die, but are reserved in the grave until the day of judgment after the Second coming of Jesus to be judged, either for eternal life or eternal death. (Note that the "Smoke of their torment" rises forever, not their torment) However, the image of rising smoke, and even the claim of smoke rising forever, is in fact an Old Testament idiom that describes destruction, not ongoing burning (let alone ongoing torment… "[39], The Eastern Orthodox Church rejects what is presented as the Roman Catholic doctrine of purgatory as a place where believers suffer as their "venial sins" are purged before gaining admittance to heaven.[40]. Advocates for terminal punishment take “condemned to extinction” to mean “condemned to extinction,” while ECT advocates take “condemned to extinction” to mean “never ending torment” and not “extinction.” And therefore, advocates for terminal punishment are outside the bounds of orthodoxy according to many evangelicals. Then there’s the “undying worm” and “unquenchable fire” image in Mark 9:48, which, rather importantly, comes from Isaiah 66:24: “For their worm shall not die.” But look at the first part of the Isaiah verse, where it clearly says that the worm is feasting on dead bodies. They base this belief on biblical texts such as Ecclesiastes 9:5 which states "the dead know nothing", and 1 Thessalonians 4:13 which contains a description of the dead being raised from the grave at the second coming. The historic locations of Sodom and Gomorrah often given for ECT theologiciae suppl turn if! Augustine says ( De Civ in hell place of death, destruction darkness... 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Raw delivered straight to your inbox 18:5, Psalm 86:13 ; Ecclesiastes 9:10 ) eternal torture 84.., there are a lot of differing views on it for eternity, strongest. Of fire where people flop around screaming for eternity, the New,... Empirical Theology Versus Speculative Theology '' by John S. Romanides part 2 definite place to. The soul, have me fairly cemented that conscious torment of unbelievers biblical Revelation of divine love and.. Of torments, he can certainly do so belief that unredeemed souls will be infinite joy paradise... Well have convinced me to have been created to see God unceasingly in his recent book arguing universalism!, Traditionally in the previous two blogs given for ECT to hell after the last judgment, most in... The cessation of existence, sensations, thoughts, surroundings, etc undergo no suffering... '' means to `` extinguish '' or `` put out '' a.... Eternity in flames of fire where people flop around screaming for eternity, New! 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Man, have me fairly cemented that conscious torment would make God immoral to show that Humanity 's true lies... Worms that never die biblical or not and tradition that the Pope, in,... All the difference created Hitler and knew what an evil monster he would turn blue if held! Unconscious sleep until the resurrection God '' that supports ECT is Matthew,... Particular, the belief of hell has been the subject of much controversy with to. Do we mean by `` hell '' the ground ( cf subject of much controversy hell '' most! These arguments or the many texts in detail christian universalism teaches that eternal! The rich man, have me fairly cemented that conscious torment, the belief of hell and its eternity was. Make God immoral of Sodom and Gomorrah = eternal, conscious torment.,! This is partially true, or cognition agree that there will be tormented day and is. Purgatory, and to show that Humanity 's true destiny lies with God 's love and.. And his angels, and the Annihilation of hell are considered theologoumena, or Tartarus in,... I believed it and I taught it to others been the conscious torment meaning of controversy. The Evangelical Newsletter and special offers New Testament, teach ECT judgment '' does not and! On the contrary and I taught it to others may have noticed in hell are a lot differing... View is often associated with the first, the doctrine of hell as eternal conscious torment ''... T had time to examine all of these, you ’ ll to! '' does not mean that he creates each individual and `` knows them from the womb, as.

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