Bible Questions and Answers

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Hell as a place of eternal fiery torment is a pagan fiction adopted by apostate Christianity.

In the KJV Old Testament ‘hell’ is the translation of the Hebrew ‘sheol’.

The same word is translated ‘grave’ 31 times, ‘hell’ 31 times and ‘pit’ 3 times.

Genesis 44:31 It shall come to pass, when he (Jacob) seeth that the lad is not with us, that he will die: and thy servants shall bring down the gray hairs of thy servant our father with sorrow to the grave (sheol).

The word clearly means grave, it is not a place of eternal torment.

In the KJV New Testament things are a little more complex.

‘Hell’ is the translation of 3 different words.

1. Hell is the translation of the Greek ‘hades’.

It is translated ‘hell’ 10 times and ‘grave’ 1 time.

‘Hades’ is the Greek equivalent of the Hebrew ‘sheol’.

This is seen when Psalm 16:10 is quoted.

Psalms 16:10 For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell (sheol); neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.

Acts 2:27 Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell (hades), neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.

It refers to the time that Jesus lay in the tomb.

Clearly ‘hades’ means ‘grave’.

1 Corinthians 15:55 O death, where is thy sting? O grave (hades), where is thy victory?

At the final judgment ‘hades’ is to be emptied (when the dead are raised to judgment) and then metaphorically destroyed along with death (no more sin = no more death = no more graves).

Revelation 20:13… and death and hell (hades) delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. 14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.

2. Hell is the translation of the Greek ‘gehenna’.

It occurs 12 times and is a transliteration of the Hebrew meaning the ‘valley of Hinnom’.

The valley of Hinnom was where idolatrous rites had been carried out involving the sacrifice of children.

In Jesus’ day it was used as a rubbish tip, and fires were constantly burning to consume rubbish.

Matthew 5:29 And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell (Gehenna).

To consign someone to ‘gehenna’ was a metaphor for casting them out with the rubbish to be destroyed.

Gehenna is 3 times used in conjunction with ‘fire’, translated ‘hell fire’ meaning the ‘fire of gehenna’ - the fire of the rubbish tip. There is no sense in which it implies eternal torment; rather it implies eternal destruction.

3. Hell is in one instance the translation of the Greek ‘tartarus’. In Greek mythology ‘tartarus’ was deeper than ‘hades’.

2 Peter 2:4 For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell (tartarus), and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment;

There are some difficulties here. God’s angels do not sin,

The Greek word translated ‘angel’ means ‘messenger’ and can be applied to men to whom God has given authority.

Peter is referring to the occasion when Korah, Dathan and Abiram tried to supplant Moses and Aaron.

The earth opened and swallowed them up, thus burying them deeper in the earth than a normal burial.

Numbers 16:32 And the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed them up, and their houses, and all the men that appertained unto Korah, and all their goods.

They remain in the earth awaiting the resurrection to judgment.

The false doctrine of eternal torment in a place called ‘hell’ depends on men having an immortal soul or spirit which continues in a conscious existence after death.

The Bible flatly contradicts this.

Death is a punishment for sin.

Ezekiel 18:20 The soul that sinneth, it shall die.

Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death;

The Bible denies that there is consciousness in death.

Ecclesiastes 9:5 For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not any thing..,

Psalms 146:4 His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish.

Death is spoken of as sleep – we all experience the unconsciousness of sleep.

We have no separate conscious existence while our body sleeps.

1 Kings 2:10 So David slept with his fathers, and was buried in the city of David.

Acts 7:60 And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.

In old English ‘hell’ meant a covered place. One ‘helled’ potatoes by covering them to protect from frost.

The word is retained in ‘helmet’ meaning a head covering.

The doctrine that God created man and will consign the majority of them to eternal conscious fiery torment is completely false.

It is in truth a blasphemous doctrine, for it maligns the creator.

God loves his creation, he offers man eternal life for obedience.

His punishment for those who choose not to obey him is eternal death.

The oblivion of death is the only punishment for sin.

We are to love our enemies in the same way that God loves his enemies. God provides for their bodily needs.

Matthew 5:43 Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. 44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; 45 That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. 46 For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same? 47 And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so? 48 Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.

I hope you find this helpful.

God bless,