33 For Tophet [Tophteh] is ordained [`arak] of old ['ethmowl]; yea, for the king [melek] it is prepared [kuwn]; he hath made it deep [`amaq] and large [rachab]: the pile [maduwrah] thereof is fire ['esh] and much [rabah] wood [`ets]; the breath [nashamah] of the LORD [Yahovah], like a stream [nachal] of brimstone [gophriyth], doth kindle [ba`ar] it. KJV-Interlinear
33 For a burning place has long been prepared; indeed, for the king it is made ready, its pyre made deep and wide, with fire and wood in abundance; the breath of the LORD, like a stream of sulfur, kindles it. ESV
The Lake of Fire, is herein described, and has many references in the book of Revelation, but the concept is documented and illustrated within the Old Testament, as we have here in this verse.
The word Tophet means, that which causes loathing or abhorrence, that which produces disgust and vomiting, to spit out.
The word occurs only in 2 Kings 23, and in several verses in Jeremiah chapters 7, and 19.
It is typically applied to a deep valley that is southeast of Jerusalem which was associated with the seed of idolatry, and more particularly of the worship of Moloch. The name given to that valley was Hinnom, or Tophet, and later referred to as Gehenna.
The valley was the place of worship of false gods, particularly Moloch, which included the construction of huge brazen images with a hollow trunk and arms which was heated and set on fire within, and then children were placed as a sacrifice within the hollow trunk. And in order to drown out their screams, drums were beaten.
In later times the valley became a dumping place for the filth and trash of the city of Jerusalem, including the dead which had nowhere else to be placed. And in order to reduce or get rid of the stench, fires were kept going, in order to keep things burning, and hence the valley became the symbolism of a vast never-ending Lake of Fire. A term which was used in the New Testament to describe the eternal and never-ending and continuing destruction of all that is corrupt and wicked and evil.
Note that the garbage of the city, the city of peace, was removed from the city, and destroyed at a location outside of the city. The Lake of Fire is not a part of the future eternal state of Christians, but excluded and located elsewhere.
Ordained of old, is a reference to an appointment of this eventual place, since the beginning of time. And since only God existed since the beginning of time, then the decree came from God.
It was to this place, the Lake of Fire, that Satan and all of his fallen angel associates, having been convicted, are now sentenced to, which sentence has not yet been carried out.
The king, is a reference to Satan, since in times old, he was the only one who had been condemned, and for which this place was originally prepared.
And by the way, the real Lake of Fire, is not on or of this present earth or universe, but will be located someplace beyond our knowledge and existence, since our eternal life will not be encumbered with anything bad, and certainly not a place like the Lake of Fire.
Deep and wide, is a reference to the vast capacity, such that this place can receive a huge volume of garbage. The garbage of course will consist of unbelievers, and Satan, and so forth.
With fire and wood in abundance, indicates unlimited resources of fuel, such that the fires will never end, and the burning will never end, and the destruction will never end.
In the final phrase, the breath of the Lord, like a stream of brimstone, kindles it, indicates that the breath of the Lord, being the perfect judgment of God, acts like air being blown over smoldering embers, igniting them into flames, and as with brimstone, of extreme intensity.
And the idea here is, the kindling, or the beginning of the fires, is started by the evil ones themselves. Evil, in effect is the cause of its own destruction.
Typically, the breath of God, is used to describe the spark of life, or the breath of life, and the same word, nashamah, is used in Genesis, to describe the spark of life or the breath of life, in Adam.
However here, instead of taking on life, which God breathes, evil uses that spark or breath, to bring about its own self-destruction.
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