VERSIONS OF HELL
William Robert West
The Rapture and Israel
A Resurrection To Immortaity
OVER NINETEEN PROTESTANT
VERSIONS OF HELL
NINE OTHER VERSIONS OF HELL
THREE CATHOLIC VERSIONS OF HELL
THIRTY-ONE PLUS VERSIONS OF HELL
Where is Hell? What is Hell? There are over 31 different versions of what Hell is that are commonly believed in Christianity and many more versions of what Hell is in non-Christian religion of the world. While some of the divisions have some features that are similar, they are all difference, and each division has sharp disagreements with all the other divisions. Those that believe any one of the thirty-one plus divisions of Hell are in conflict with all those that believe any of the other thirty plus divisions. It would not be possible for more than one of the many versions of Hell to be true. In the thousands of denominations around the world professing to be Christian there are countless divisions on what Hell is, where Hell is, who is over Hell, how long will Hell last, many others, with many others divisions of what Hell is in the non–Christian religions of the world; below is only thirty one of many very different, very conflating Hells.
THREE CATHOLIC VERSIONS OF HELL
1. The Dark Age Medieval Catholic version of Hell
2. The New Catholic version of Hell
3. The Nether World
A FEW OF THE MANY THE PROMINENT
DIVISIONS OF THE PROTESTANT VERSIONS OF HELL
1. Yesterday’s underground chamber Hell
2. Who knows where today’s Hell is.
3. The Calvin version of Hell
4. The Jonathan Edward versions of Hell
5. The Graphic view of Hell
6. Two Hells, the literal fire Hell
7. Satan doing the tormenting
8. God doing the tormenting
9. The Metaphorical view of both Heaven and Hell
11. Mental anguish only Hell, Billy Graham
12. The eternal sinning version of Hell
13. C. S. Lewis, the almost pleasant Hell
14. Protestant Traditionalist
15. Many Protestant Premillennial versions of Hell
16. Dante’s cold Hell with nine levels of torment
17. Realized Eschatology – A. D. 70 version
18. The “Sudden Realization” version of Hell i
19. Protestant Rephaim versions
NINE OTHER DIVISIONS OF WHAT HELL IS
1. Abraham’s bosom, the after Judgment Hell, A newer version, Church of Christ, Christian Church.
2. Edward Fudge version, the short Hell that will end
3. Christadelphians version of Hell
4. Church of God and others
5. Universalist version of Hell
6. Seventh-Day Advent version of Hell
7. Latter-day Saints version of Hell (Mormons)
8. The Grave is Hell version (Jehovah's Witnesses)
9. Christian Science Version of Hell
NO BIBLE HELL
1. There is nothing about Hell in the Bible. Hell was invented in the Dark Age by the Catholic Church.
Which Hell do you believe in? From where did Hell come?
THREE CATHOLIC DIVISIONS OF HELL
(1). The Medieval Dark Age Catholic version of Hell, the beginning of the belief in Hell was the Hell that was a chamber inside of the earth. A soul being immortal came from Greek philosophy, from the belief that souls had some kind of exists in a place inside of earth unto they were reincarnated, and was brought into the church by a few of the church fathers, by Augustine more then most others. The doctrine of Hell being an under ground chamber came soon after the immortal soul doctrine, and was fully developed by the Catholic Church in the Dark Age before the Protestant Reformation. It seems to be that in the past they believed that only a very few, the very bad will go to Hell at their death with no judgment, which the Catholics had made into a real place, but most souls that had been in Catholics will go to Purgatory at death. Later they made a few of the souls that had been in the very good will go to Heaven at their death with no judgment (an instant rapture). At death most Catholic now believe souls will go immediately to Purgatory, which seems to be a limited version of Hell, unto they have suffered enough to pay for their sins, or unto their love ones have paid all they can, then the souls that had been in them will go to Heaven. How long a soul will be in Purgatory is sometimes taught to be a short time, and sometimes a very long time to those who have no one to win indulgences for them, no one to pay. It has brought enormous wealth to the rich Catholic Church from the poor who paid what little they had, and even did without food to help a loved one out of Purgatory. The Catholic Purgatory gives no hope for heathens, heretics, or those not baptized. The Catholic Doctrine of Purgatory (1) makes some go to Heaven or Hell at death, (2) makes other Catholics get to Heaven as soon as they (not Christ) have suffered enough to pay for their own sins, (3) leaves no souls that had been in dead Catholics that will not already be in Heaven to be resurrected at the second coming of Christ. They, not Christ, will have suffered unto they have paid in full for their own sins, or others have paid enough money to free their souls from Purgatory. An example of the Catholic teaching on the selling of indulgences that was common before the time of Martin Luther as given by John Tetzel, a Dominican monk who said as soon as the money is given, “The soul escapes from purgatory, and flies liberated to heaven,” and “The Lord no longer reigns…He has given all power to the pope.” As quoted by F. LaGard Smith of Lipscomb University in “After Life,” pages 223-224.
Connelly – Field debate, “Tetzel had the presumption to say, that he had saved more souls out of purgatory by the sale of indulgences than Pater saved by his preaching,” page 254. If a soul in purgatory paid for the sins of the person, the sins are not forgiven by the death of Christ; the suffering of a soul in purgatory pays for the sins of the dead person that soul had been in.
S. M. BROWN, “Medieval Europe,” pages 348-259, 1932. “Hell is wide without measure, and deep and bottomless; full of incomparable fire, for no earthly fire may be compared therewith; full of stench intolerable for no living thing on earth might endure it; full of unutterable sorrow for no mouth may, on account of the wretchedness or the woe thereof, give an account not tell of it. Yea, the darkness therein is so thick that one may grasp it, for the fire there gives no light, but blinds the eyes of them that are there with a smothering smoke, the worst of smokes. And nevertheless in that same black darkness they see black things as devils, that ever maul them and afflict and harass them with all kinds of tortures; and tailed drakes, horrible as devils, that devour them whole and spew them out afterwards before and behind. At other times they rent them in pieces and chew each gobbet of them, and they afterwards become whole again, such as they previously were, to under go again such bale with recovery, and full well they see themselves very horrible and dreadful; and to increase their pains the loathsome hell-worms, toads, and frogs that eat out their eyes and nostrils, and adders and water-frogs, not like those here, but hundred times more horrible, sneak in and out of the mouth, ears, eyes, navel ever yet thickest. There is shrieking in the flame and chattering of teeth in the snowy waters. Suddenly they flit upon the heat into the cold, nor ever do they know of there two which is worst for them, for each is intolerable…And this same wan hope is their greatest torment, that none have any hope of any recovery, but are sure of ever ill, to continue in woe, world without end, even in eternity. Each chokes the other, and each in another’s torment, and each hates another and him self as the black devil; and as they loved them the more in this world, so the more shall they hate them there. And each curses another, and gnaws off the other’s arms, ears, and nose also.” As quoted by Robert L. Whitelaw in “The Last Resurrection,” pages 61-62.
This is the “Hell” that was taught by the Catholic Church, but there is nothing like it in the Bible. It came partly from pagan teaching, but mostly from made up torments by the Catholic Church.
(2). The new Catholic version of Hell.
POPE JOHN PAUL II, "Hell is not a punishment imposed externally by God, but the condition resulting from attitudes and actions which people adopt in this life...So eternal damnation is not God's work but is actually our own doing...More than a physical place, Hell is the state of those who freely and definitively separate themselves from God, the source of all life and joy." In a statement made to his general audience, July 28, 1999. - “The soul in the OT means not a part of man, but the whole man as a living being. Similarly in the NT, it signifies human life: the life of an individual conscious object (Matt 2:20; 6:25; Luke 12:22-23; 14:26; John 10:11,15, 17; John 13:37; Acts 27:10, 22; Phil 2:30; 1 Thess 2:8). Recent exegetes…have maintained that the NT dose not teach the immortality of the soul in the Hellenistic sense of survival of an immortal principle after death.” The New Catholic Encyclopedia, article “Soul, Human, Immortality of, In The Bible.”
There are other high up Catholics who have made statements like this, but I see no use in adding more when you have this from the Pope who is the top person in the Catholic Church who’s word is law, who Catholics say is “Lord God in the flesh.” Maybe this is why two of their English Bible translations do not have the word "Hell" in them, and who knows how many other Catholics translations in other languages do not; however, because it has been the official doctrine for centuries, and the decrees of councils and Popes, the Roman Catholic Church cannot officially not teach Hell is a place of endless torment without giving up completely their claim of infallibility. Protestantism has not made this claim of infallibility and many are giving Hell up.
(3). The Nether World, is this a new, a third Catholic division of what Hell is. More and more in today's writing, the Nether World is being used as if it is a Bible place that is clearly taught in the Bible; but I have yet to read where anyone told where it is in the Bible. Do both the Nether World and Abraham's bosom now exists at the same time? If so, how are they different? Are some souls now in Abraham's bosom and other soul are now in the Nether world both at the same time? The American Heritage Dictionary says, “NETHER, located beneath or below; lower or under: the nether regions of the earth.” Where did this world that is located beneath or under this world come from? It is not in the Bible; therefore, how could anyone know about it? It came from the Catholic Church. Like Hell, they mistranslated it from hades to get it into the Bible. Both Hell and Nether World were mistranslated from the same word, both from hades, and both from the same passage in difference translations, see Acts 2:27. Is this an attempt to make Hell be in a chamber inside of the earth?
Psalm 16:10 in two Catholic translations
1. SHEOL CHANGED TO HELL, “Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell" Douay–Rheims (Psalm 16:10, 1890).
2. SHEOL CHANGED TO NETHER WORLD, “For you will not abandon my soul to the Nether World" New American Bible Psalm (16:10, 1991).
Both are Catholic translations. THERE IS NO WAY THE SAME WORD IN THE SAME PASSAGE COULD MEAN BOTH “HELL” AND “NETHER WORLD.” They are two completely difference places.
1. “For Thou wilt not abandon my soul to Sheol” (Psalm 16:10 New American Standard). Sheol (grave) was not translated Hell or Nether World in it.
2. “You will not abandon me to the realm of the dead” (Psalm 16:10 New International Version). Sheol changed to “realm of the dead,” which is not in the Hebrew.
The Nether World is a new name being put into the Bible by the same people (the Catholic Church) who put Hell into the Bible, and it is being put into the Bible in the same way, by mistranslating the same word that was mistranslated to put in Hell.
1. First, hades was mistranslated Hell in Catholic translations that in the Dark Age they believed Hell was in a chamber in the earth.
2. Second, the same word, hades, in the same passage that was mistranslated “Hell” is now mistranslated Nether World in some Catholic translations. Nether World – a place that is beneath or in the earth.
SOME OF THE MANY DIVISIONS
OF THE EVER CHANGING AND GROWING
PROTESTANT VERSIONS OF HELL
As in any teaching of man there are divisions, thirty-one difference Hells that I know of and no doubt there are many divisions that I do not know of.
After much conflict among the reformers, most Protestants accepted souls going to Heaven or Hell one by one at the death of the persons they had been in without the Resurrection at the coming of Christ, going to Heaven or Hell before and without the judgment.
Unconditional immortality, which is the foundation on which Hell stands, was accepted by most Protestants mostly due to Calvin and those that followed him winning out over Martin Luther and his followers. If they had accepted Luther's views on immortality there would be no foundation for Hell. Many Protestants now believe souls that are in all who do not accept Christ will instantly be transported to Hell at the death of the person a soul had been in, transported to Hell before the resurrection and before the Judgment Day; that God has deliberately chooses to make these souls suffer and feel the pain without any letup forever; and that the souls that had been in the saved will go to their endless home in Heaven at the death of the persons that the souls had been in. The Westminster Confession says, "The souls of the righteous...are received unto the highest heavens...the soul of the wicked are cast into Hell." Does God judge them at death, them maybe thousands of years later, takes souls out of Heaven and Hell to judge them a second time at the resurrection to see whether He made a mistake in His first judgment at their death? This version is still believed by many today.
Both (1) an opposition to belief in Hell, and (2) divisions on what Hell is are both rapidly growing in the Protestant churches. From the Protestant Reformation unto now there have been many changes in both what and where Hell is, and many new Protestant versions of Hell.
(1). YESTERDAY’S HELL, THE UNDERGROUND CHAMBER HELL. Pagan philosophers mostly believed a soul was somewhere underground where a soul had some kind of existent unto it was reincarnated was believed in by most of the world that was not Christian. The Catholic Dark Age Pagan Catholic Hell where souls was kept someplace inside of the earth came from Pagan philosophers. That all Souls being in this underground chamber has been believed for centuries by Catholics, and by most Protestants unto lately.
(2). THE WHO KNOWS WHERE TODAY’S HELL IS. Lately many Protestants and even many Catholics have moved the dead from a chamber inside of the earth where they had believed it to be for many centuries (by many unto about the eighteenth and first part of the nineteenth century) to a new made up place that who knows where it is, maybe some place out in space, but not on or inside of the earth. When the dead goes to Heaven or Hell is believed by many Protestants (1) to be at the death of the person, and by many other Protestants (2) to be only after the second coming of Christ, not unto after they are judged at the judgment. (3) Others now have all souls in Abraham’s bosom where they believe all deathless souls will be unto the Judgment, and the souls that were in the lost dead persons will have some kind of torment unto the resurrection; then they believe the souls will be moved from where ever Abraham’s bosom is to Heaven or Hell. See chapter eight-part one “The Rich Man And Lazarus.”
(3). THE CALVIN VERSION OF HELL. The given no chance Hell. An early Protestant Version with a God that made most of mankind knowing that after their death He is going to torment souls that had been in them in Hell forever, and there is nothing a person can do to keep a soul that many believe is in them from going to Hell after they are dead, a God that made the conditions of salvation that most could not meet, but He is going to endless torment a soul because He made the person where he or she would not be able to meet His conditions. This God made most of mankind just so He could torment souls that He put in them forever as their creed says, "To his good pleasure;" if it were “to his good pleasure” to torment for eternity there would be no way to escape the conclusion that tormenting is just what such a God wants to do and takes pleasure (enjoyment) in doing it; predestinated endless torment could serve only one purpose, an infinite desire to torment; a torment by this evil Calvin God that will never end.
No amount of preaching or teaching can change the number of souls that shall be in Calvin’s Hell not even by one soul. The Westminster Confession says, "By the decree of God, for the Manifestation of his glory, some men and angels are predestinated unto Everlasting Life, and others foreordained unto everlasting death;" this view believes God loves a few and saves the souls that are in them, but that He hates most, that He could save the souls that are in all persons but He want to torment them; Calvinist believe God’s anger will be visited upon on the souls that had been in the dead rebels whose rebellion was preordained by God; how could anyone say God is love when they believe He dose not want most of mankind saved, that He made them just so He could torment souls? Some Protestants still believe this version of Hell that their God made most of mankind just so He could torment souls for eternity, but this version of Hell is not near as poplar as it was a few years ago and is losing believers even in the churches that teach it. Those who say they are orthodox Protestants but do not believe the Calvin Version of Hell for out number those who still believe it.
JOHN CALVIN said of those in Hell that they are, “Forever harassed with a dreadful tempest; that shall feel themselves torn asunder by an angry God, and transfixed and penetrated by mortal stings, terrified by the thunderbolts of God, and broken by the weight of his hand, so that to sink into any gulf would be more tolerable than to stand for a moment in these terrors.” There is nothing like this in the Bible, he made it up, it is pure slander of God.
In the Dark Age the Catholics invented Limbo to soften the doctrine on Hell by keeping infants out of Hell. The Protestant Reformation repudiated Limbo, but Calvin invented “the age of accountable” to do the same thing. Both are the inventions of man and there is nothing like them is in the Bible.
(4). THE JONATHAN EDWARD VERSION OF HELL. Also an early Protestant Version; this traditionalist version of Hell is an eternal concentration camp that is maintained by God with most souls in it. There was a time when most Protestants believed this version of Hell, but now only a few believe it. There are countless variations of the Jonathan Edward version of Hell, both major and minor variations, about as many as there are preachers who preach it with each preacher trying to out do the others in telling of the horrors of Hell; each one trying to make the God of Hell more evil then the others have. Most taught God had given Hell over to Satan with God making sure that Satan will roast most souls forever, and torment them however Satan wishes to. Some have demons peeling off the burning flash of those in Hell with God making sure they keep it up forever. Some now have changed from Satan to God doing the tormenting of Satan, the demons, and tormenting souls that had been in the lost, with God forever pouring in fire and brimstone, and thousands of other ways of tormenting. In the past it was taught in books and painting, (see 6 below) “Satan will be doing the tormenting version of Hell.” Now most that did believe this version of Hell have changed it to being God not Satan that is doing the tormenting. Jonathan Edward said God "will crush their blood out and make it fly, so that it will sprinkle his garment and stain all his raiment." They never tell how they know such details. Put all their horrors together and it would take many books to tell all the horrors that are pure fiction with nothing that is even remotely kin in the Bible to the countless horrors they tell of, or of the evil God they worship, yet they falsely preach these made up falsehoods and teach them as if they were the word of God; many of these preachers get very specific with the details of the torment. Edwards’ God is like a person that puts cats in a microwave oven for pleasure, and Heaven take delight in seeing the other souls squirming in agony. Jonathan Edward in “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God” said, “The smoke of their burning flesh shall be a sweet smelling savor in the nostrils of the Almighty.”
These "Hellfire" preachers are not as poplar as they once were, and their audience is much smaller and still getting smaller. It is unimportant to them if they have no Bible for their Hell or its horrors; the badly mistranslated King James Version is all they need to make their Hell believable to many with whatever kind of torments their imagination wanted to put in it. Some believers of the Calvin version also believe much of this version and mix the two version of Hell together. There is not much unity of belief among the Protestants of today. In almost any church if the preacher started preached sermons about Hell that are like the one's Edward preached he would be out of work very soon. The God Edward believed in would have no problem with tormenting souls that had been in the lost; his God would take great pleasure in tormenting, and according to Edward, the saints in Heaven will watch with pleasure and satisfaction. The worst torment any man can or ever has given to another man is nothing to what Jonathan Edward described his God is doing in his sermon, “Sinner in the Hands of an Angry God.”
The Protestant doctrines of Hell as taught by Calvin and Edward are as hideous and evil as anything that was taught in the Dark Age by the Catholic Church; God is made to use His power to keep souls that had been in sinners alive even while they are being burned with a fire that would kill in seconds just so his God can torment souls without end. When Jesus was in this world He loved sinners and give His life for them, but both Calvin and Edward makes neither God nor Christ not to have any compassion and no love for the souls that they say were not in the “few” that He has chosen to save.
In the not too distance past either the Calvin or the Edward Hell was taught and most Protestants believed one or the other one, but what is believed about Hell is ever changing and now most Protestants do not believed in either one, now both of these two views of Hell have been given up by many orthodox Protestant churches, and many others have toned down the Hell they teach unto todays Hell is noting like the older views of Hell.
(5). THE “REVISIONIST” VERSION OF HELL. Is a reaction to the traditional versions of Hell, an attempt to take the monster out of God that the Catholic, Calvin, Edward, and other divisions make Him to be by taking the Hell out of Hell. This version of Hell takes the suffering out of Hell and makes it into a place for those to live that have chosen to live separate from God. There will be no joy in this “Hell” as there will be in Heaven with God, but there will be no pain or torment by God, just bare existence.
(6). THE GRAPHIC VERSION OF HELL. The sinners will be tormented in the parts of their bodies that sinned.
WILLIAM CROCKETT, "In short, whatever member of the body sinned, that member would be punished more than any other in hell...In Christian literature we find blasphemers hanging by their tongues. Adulterous women who plaited their hair to entice men dangle over boiling mire by their...hair." page 46, “Four Views on Hell," 1997.
There is no way that this version of Hell could be harmonized with Vine’s teaching that a soul is, “The immaterial, invisible part of man;” his souls do not have tongues or hair.
(7). TWO HELLS, THE LITERAL FIRE HELL. Augustine said, “That hell, which also is called a lake of fire and brimstone, will be material fire and will torment the bodies of the damned.” This literal version of Hell is where the earthly bodies of the lost, not souls, are literally burning for all eternality but this fire can never burn them up; while the body is tormented in Hell, the soul will also be being tormented, body and soul are both tormented, but both are tormented separately; the body or person in one Hell, and a soul that had been in the person in another Hell.
SPURGEON, one of the best known of Baptist preachers, said, "When thou driest, thy soul will be tormented alone; that will be a hell for it; but at the day of judgment thy body will join thy soul and then thou wilt have twin hells, thy soul sweating drops of blood, and thy body suffused with agony. In fire exactly like that which we have on earth, thy body will lie, asbestos like, forever unconsumed, all thy veins roads for the feet of pain to travel on, every nerve a string on which the devil shall forever play his diabolical tune of hell's unutterable lament." From his sermon "The Resurrection of the Dead." Like most who believe God will forever torment many billions, he must have some revelation that is not in the Bible to tell him about their suffering. In his day most orthodox Protestants believed the Devil would be doing the tormenting, but today most orthodox Protestants think he was wrong, that God is the one who will be doing the tormenting. The man made "Hell" is forever changing. What was orthodox in his day is no longer orthodox. For many Baptists his truth is no longer truth.
(8). SATAN WILL BE DOING THE TORMENTING VERSION OF HELL. Satan and his angels will be doing the tormenting, but they could only be executing the will of God that the lost be tormented for they could not torment souls that had been in the lost without God letting them. This view was believed by most in the Dark Age, and by most Jonathan Edward preachers who often speak of “the devil Hell” as though Hell was a place that belonged to Satan. Most Protestants have now abandon the view of Satan and his demons doing the tormenting, but I remember that this was believed by most when I was a child, and was what most Protestants believed at that time. Many painting in museums and churches show Satan and his demons roasting those in Hell, and tormenting them in every way the painters could think up.
HENRY WARD BEECHES speaking of Michael Angelo's painting, The Last Judgment said, "Let anyone see the enormous gigantic coils of fiends and man; let anyone look at the defiant Christ that stands like a superb athlete at the front, hurling his enemies from him and calling his friends toward him as Hercules might have done; let anyone look upon that hideous wriggling mass that goes plunging down through the air-serpents and man and beasts of every nauseous kind, mixed together; let him look at the lower parts of the picture, where with the pitchforks men are by devils being cast into cauldrons and into burning fires, where hateful fiends are gnawing the skulls of suffering sinners, and where there is hellish cannibalism going on–let a man look at that picture and scenes which it depicts, and he sees what were the ideas which man once had of Hell and of divine justice. It was a night-mare as hideous as was ever begotten by the hellish brood it-self; and it was an atrocious slander on God...I do not wonder that men have reacted from these horrors."
There are hundreds or thousands of this kind of paintings in museums and Catholic Churches around the world, especially in Italy, that were painted in the Dark Age, and they show what was believed about who would torment the lost. These painting show a God that is bringing millions into existence ever year and then casting them to demons for the demons to torment.
Satan and his demons are never punished in this version of Hell. Satan and evil spirits are forever over "Hell," and will forever be able to torment most souls that had been in mankind. Instead of being punished, they will have forever triumphed over God, and they will forever have a kingdom of their own where they will work their evil on souls as they please to, and as it gives them pleasure. This version of Hell makes there be something like two kingdoms or two universes after the judgment, one with Satan over it with most souls that had been in the lost before the death of the persons, but these souls are now in Satan’s kingdom, and God over a much smaller number of souls in His kingdom. Both God and Satan would each have endless power in their kingdom in this division between Heaven and Hell; this Hell would mean God would not ever have a victory over evil.
(9). GOD WILL BE DOING THE TORMENTING VERSION OF HELL. Most Protestants have changed and now believe Satan and his angels will be tormented by God just as all souls that had been in the lost of mankind. There has been a major change by many Protestants from Satan doing the tormenting to God forever being in Hell and God Himself doing the tormenting of Satan, demons, and all the souls that had been in all lost persons. Not long ago most Protestants believe Satan would be doing the tormenting in Hell, now most Protestants say they were all wrong, that it will be God doing the tormenting.
(10). THE METAPHORICAL VIEW OF BOTH HEAVEN AND HELL. This view tells us we are not told what Heaven and Hell will literally be like. In this view we are told in pictures that tell us Heaven will be a place of beauty more than anything on this earth, and most that believe in Hell tell us that Hell will be worse than anything on this earth. Because we cannot understand what Heaven will really be like, we are given the picture of a city with gold streets and pearl gates to picture for us its great beauty and value, but Heaven will not literally be made of gold, pearls, or of anything that we have on this earth. The metaphorical view of Hell says Hell is pictured as a place of fire; being burned in fire is one of the worst pains we know of, but those that believes this version do not believe it will be literally fire, as we know it, or literal darkness as we know it. In this view none of the literal torments of the Calvin and Jonathan Edward Versions are possible for their torments are all things of this earth that will not be in the Metaphorical version of "Hell." This Hell that is taught by William Crockett in “Four Views On Hell” in 1997 seems to be growing rapidly, for it is looked on as a way to make God less evil, but in fact it does not for whatever would be symbolized by being tormented by endless fire would be just as bad if not worse than souls being endlessly tormented in a literal fire that cannot kill, and God would still be the one doing the endless tormenting and it would make Him just as evil.
(11). MENTAL ANGUISH VERSION OF HELL, Billy Graham and many others. This version of Hell changes Hell from being a real place that had been believed in by most Protestants; Hell is changed to being a state of mind.
BILLY GRAHAM, "Could it be that the fire Jesus talked about is an eternal search for God that is never quenched? That, indeed, would be hell. To be away from God forever, separated from His Presence." Page 75, “The Challenge: Sermons from Madison Square Garden,” 1969. He makes Hell be only a state of mind.
ISAAC WATTS in "The World To Come," page 300, makes the worm be the conscience of a person eating on himself for all eternally. A survey by US News, January 2000, page 47, says 53 percent of Americans believe Hell to be only mental anguish.
This is an attempt by some to lessen the negative effect of Hell making God cruel and sadistic, but the attempt is a complete failure. Replacing physical torment with mental anguish does nothing to change Hell by making the torment be less. Mental anguish can be worse than physical pain, and it would still be unbearable torment by God without end. Billy Graham, who is an orthodox Protestant, would in no way been called orthodox by Calvin or Jonathan Edward, nor would many others that now believe Hell is only mental anguish as he does. The old orthodox is some times the very opposite of the new orthodox. In the mental anguish version of Hell for sins after death, HELL IS NOT A PLACE BUT A STATE OF MIND, OF ANGUISH CAUSED BY SEPARATION FROM GOD, the souls that had been in sinners punishes themself; it is not God that punishes them, but where are all the souls that are punishing themselves? IF THEY ARE NOT IN HEAVEN OR HELL, WHERE ARE THEY?
ALEXANDER CAMPBELL, "The sinner's suffering by mental agony, produced by sin, greater than could be caused by material fire," "Five discourses on Hell," 1848. This version of Hell that is believed by Billy Graham, Alexander Campbell, and over 53 percent of Americans (A survey by US News, January 2000, page 47) is a totally difference Hell than the orthodox Hell of Calvin; the real material fire preached by Edward and Calvin has been replaced with, for lack of a better name, a spiritual fire that mentally torments, but this fire never burns up anything.
(12). THE ETERNAL SINNING VERSION OF HELL. Sin is self-perpetuating and the souls that had been in sinner cannot stop sinning even when tormented in Hell for it; therefore souls that keep sinning without end makes God have to keep tormenting them without end. This version makes evil be just as endless as God, and makes God never able to destroy evil.
DR. CRAIG, “Now, of course, nobody commits an infinite number of sins in the earthly life. But what about in the afterlife? Insofar as the inhabitants of hell continue to hate god and reject Him, they continue to sin and so accrue to themselves more guilt and more punishment. In a real sense then, hell is self-perpetuating. In such a case, every sin has a finite punishment, but because sinning goes on forever, so does the punishment.” Graig Bradley Debate.
This version of Hell is just another attempt to justify God for tormenting souls for all eternity for the sins that the persons commented in their lifetime. Some Protestants believe that the sins of a dead person in their lifetime was not enough for a soul to be tormented for all eternity, but all souls that had been in the lost dead persons that sins in their lifetime, these souls will keep on sinning after they are in Hell, and not one soul will ever stop sinning; therefore, the tormenting of these souls by God will never stop. If all souls in Hell grows worse and worse as time goes on, after millions of ages have passed the evil of these in Hell will be to terrible, to revolting to even think upon; who can believe the revolting evil that will exit, countless times more evil than when a soul is first put in Hell if evil will be growing without end, if the endless sinning version of Hell were true?
“Sin is the transgression of the law,” therefore, if there were sin after the Judgment Day there would have to be given a law to transgress. There is not one word about there beings a new law given to the souls that had been in the dead persons after the judgment; or not one word that there will be a law and sin after the judgment, and souls that had been in the lost will continue to sin is a one-hundred present made up adding to God’s word to try to justify endless torment by God. If it were true that the souls that had been in sinner could never stop sinning after death then would it not be true that the sinner cannot stop sinning in this lifetime; therefore, no one could ever be saved?
ALEXANDER CAMPBELL, "We do not maintain that men are punished eternally for sins committed in this life only. The analysis of the sufferings of a future retribution, which we have just given, is itself sufficient evidence of this fact; for the indulgence of voluntary depravity is itself both sin and punishment. As a consequence of past sins, the sinner has formed the habit of sinning. It is a law of man's nature, that habit creates both a tendency to certain acts, and a facility in their performance. As the result of the habit of sinning, formed in this life, a tendency to repeat acts of sin is carried on by the sinner into a future world; and every such act repeated in that world not only perpetuates, but increases the tendency to further acts of the same kind: and thus, as by every repeated act the tendency to sin is increased, and as every act also brings with it its own punishment, so, by the laws of man's mental and moral nature, the sinner's progress in both sin and suffering in a future world, is like that of a falling body, which increases its velocity as the square of the distance increase through which it falls. There is, therefore, just as little probability that a sinner, left to himself in a future world, should repent and turn to God, as that a falling body should arrest itself in its downward course, and ascend to the elevation from which it fell...surely the assumption that our doctrine supposes that God punishes sinners eternally for sins committed in this brief and frail life is wholly gratuitous." "Five Discourses On Hell," page 65, April 9, 1848, Daniel Davies Publisher.
Is he not saying that the person that steals in this life time will steal in the next, the person that commits adultery in this life time will commits adultery in the next life, or will there be a whole new and different kind of sins in the next life that souls will have to learn to be able to go on sinning? Is he saying the millions that live and die without ever hearing about God are harden sinners and that not a one would ever repent? Human nature is such that it can change; even the very bad sometimes do change in this lifetime. Is he saying God will change human nature in such a way that no soul will be able to change, not one of the many millions of souls will never be able to repent? Will God deliberately change all so that they cannot stop sinning so He can torment them for all eternally? This version of Hell makes even the worse sinners able to repent and change in this lifetime, but after death the souls that had been in all sinners will go on sinning with not one of them will ever be able to stop. It makes there be no end to sin.
Not many members of the Christian Church or the Church of Christ any longer believe as Alexander Campbell, but it is now being taught by many Protestants.
(13). C. S. LEWIS’S THE ALMOST PLEASANT HELL. In “Great Divorce” C. S. Lewis pictures Hell as not black, but only a little gray almost pleasant place where souls that are that are in Hell can take bus trips into Heaven for the day and return to Hell. See “The Destruction Of the Finally Impenitent” by Clark H. Pinnock at, http://www.abccoggc.org.jrad/volume2/issue1/jrad_v02.1_art2.htm. There is an almost constant rationalizing of the doctrine of Hell to make the God of Hell a less evil God, even making souls that we are told are immaterial and have no bodies but these souls with no bodies take bus trips from Hell to Heaven in a material bus.
(14). PROTESTANT TRADITIONALIST DIVISIONS OF HELL. Most who say they are orthodox and traditionalist believes souls that had been in the lost persons will be kept alive with some kind of punishment, but beyond this there is little agreement among them; most Protestants did believe Hell to have been a holding place inside of the earth, now most Protestants no longer believe Hell to be inside of the earth and have moved it to who knows where, maybe someplace out in space; have they not made up a place for Hell to be that was unknown about by early Protestants? Some believe much as did Jonathan Edward and Calvin, that there will be torment for all souls that are in Hell, wherever they believe Hell is, beyond anything that we can now know of. There are many others Protestants who utterly repudiate both Calvin’s and Edward's Hell; they believe that there will be some kind of endless punishment, but it may be nothing more then a little mental anguish, or just being deprived of all good. Others are at all points between the two, even when they are in the same denomination. In those who call themselves "traditionalists," there are wide ranges of views; yet, they all say they are orthodox and traditionalist! Orthodox is a big blanket, and growing bigger all the time. Even so, few if any who are orthodox and traditionalist believe the same, and there is now a world of difference in what is orthodox in the Protestants churches. Many who say they are orthodox do not believe in once saved always saved, infant baptism, Augustine's view on predestination, the millennium, and countless other differences in what is traditional and orthodox. Although they cannot agree among themselves on what is traditional, they attack all who do not believe in one of their many versions of "Hell" for not being orthodox or traditional, nonetheless accept many as being orthodox who believes in an entirely different "Hell," and even accept Premillennial, which has many who believe that Hell will be on this earth, and will last for only a short time; resurrected people, not souls will be burnt up in this Hell.
UNORTHODOX IN ORTHODOX CHURCHES. It may come as a surprise to many that there may now be more who say they are orthodox Protestants who do not believe Hell to be a real endless place of torment than there are orthodox Protestants who still believe Hell to be an actual real place of endless torment by God. When US New says 53 percent of Americans believes Hell to be only mental anguish, many of that 53 percent are orthodox Protestant, and this 53 percent is in addition to the many Protestant Premillennialists who do not believe Hell to be a place of torment; who believe Gehenna is Hell and all the lost will be resurrected and then totally destroyed in Gehenna. When some say that is only Jehovah's Witnesses teaching, they seem to be blind to the fact that this is the teaching of many of the orthodox Protestants, and the number of orthodox Protestants that do not believe in the Jonathan Edward or Calvin versions of Hell is now many times greater then the number that still do believe it. Much of what is accepted as orthodox today would have been called heresy 200 years ago by most all Protestant Churches of that time. It came as a surprise to me, as I am sure it will be to many, that many orthodox Protestants believe none of the saved will go to Heaven, but the saved will live on this earth for eternity; many Protestant Premillennialists believe this. It may also come as a surprise to many that those who say they are orthodox Protestant, but they do not believe Christ to be God, but Christ is a created being that did not exist before His birth. Many believe Him to be a chosen one by God, and that He is now in Heaven, but will come back to earth, set up the kingdom of God in Jerusalem, and will rule the kingdom, which will always be on this earth. It seems to be OK to not believe in Christ as being equal with God, but not OK not to believe God to be crueler than any other being, and not to believe that God will delight in tormenting all souls that had been in the lost forever.
(15). PROTESTANT PREMILLENNIAL DISIVIONS OVER HELL. From all the information I can find there are many more Protestants who believe in some form of Premillennial teaching than not. Premillennial variations found in the Protestants churches are pre–tribulation, mid–tribulation, post–tribulation, partial–rapture, many mini–raptures, already past rapture, the tribulation period, historic Premillennial, Post Millennialists, Dispensationalist, and many more; see my other book at http://www.robertwr.com/rapture.html Many of the Premillennial versions of Hell are somewhat similar to either the Seventh–Day Advent Version of Hell, or the Church of God Version of Hell. Many of the Premillennial versions of Hell are far from being what is thought of as being orthodox, but most all Premillennialists are thought of as being Protestant, orthodox and traditional. Many of them believe Hell is Gehenna will be restored on this earth, and believe all that the lost will be completely destroyed in Gehenna, not tormented by God in Hell.
(16). THE HELL WITH NINE LEVELS. It took nine levels of torment with each one worse than the one above it to satisfy the imaginative mind of Dante. The first level was for those who had committed no sins. Even the first of the levels, which he called circles, is a prison for those who he says committed no sins on earth, but were unbaptized and without knowledge of Christ. Each level or circle becomes increasingly worse, consistent with the degree of the guilt of the sinner. According to Dante the ninth circle of Hell is where the most evil go to, and it is reached by a hole near the Northern Hemisphere that goes down to the center of the earth.
(17). REALIZED ESCHATOLOGY, THE A. D. 70 VERSION OF HELL. It is difficult to pen down just what they believe. This Protestant version of this Hell seem to be that death is the end of those who are not faithful, and for unbelievers there will never be a resurrection. They believe the second coming of Jesus was in A. D. 70, the resurrection day was also in A. D. 70 when the Old Testament Saints where resurrected, there is no Judgment Day to come, no day that the earth will end. All the Old Testament faithful were resurrected in A. D. 70, which they believe to have been the second coming of Christ, and after A. D. 70 the Judgment Day of each person is the day of their death, (1) the death of the lost is their end, they will never be resurrected, (2) believers do not die, at the moment of the death of the earthly body they believe all the saved are change from life on earth to life in Heaven without a resurrection. This seems to be their general teaching, but whatever they believe is hard to understand, and I am sure that are many variations within Realized Eschatology.
(18). THE “SUDDEN REALIZATION” VERSION OF HELL. When the souls that had been in the lost stand before God at the judgment these souls will suddenly realize how good God is and will repent. Some say it will take only a short time, other say it will take a longer time unto these souls will be admitted into Heaven, but when they are admitted they may not have all the privileges of Heaven that the souls that had been in the persons that obeyed Christ will have. This is just another attempt to make God less evil then most orthodox Protestant versions of Hell makes Him, There is no passage that says there is a soul that can repent of the sins of the person it had been in after the person is dead.
(19). REPHAIM VERSION OF HELL–ONE OF THE MANY PROTESTANT VERSIONS OF HELL, BUT IT IS DEFINITELY NOT ORTHODOX. This version of Hell is Protestant; as far as I have been able to find no one teaches it but those who are called orthodox Protestants, but it cannot be called traditional or orthodox. God, angels, and souls are disembodied energy being capable of thought and speech without the need of a body. Rephaim is in the Hebrew Old Testament eight times; it is defined in some Lexicons as "departed spirits," "shades," "shadows," "ghosts," "name of the dead in sheol."
Three of the eight passages are in Isaiah. This is a book of many symbols, much like Revelation.
(1) Isaiah 14:9-11, "Sheol from beneath is moved for you to meet you at your coming: it rises up the dead (Rephaim) for you, even all the chief ones of the earth; it has raised up from their thrones all the kings of the nations. All they shall answer and say unto you, Have you also become weak as we: have you become like unto us? Your pomp is brought down to Sheol, and the noise of your viols: the worm is spread under you, and worms cover you." This is a symbolic description of the fall of Babylon, and it has nothing to do with a person, or an immortal something that had been in a dead person. In this metaphor the past dead nations are nations that no longer existed, kings that were in these dead nations raised up from their thrones, they were not in any kind of torment, the dead nations were surprised to see a nation as strong as Babylon joining them in sheol (grave); not many orthodox Protestants believe nations will be in Hell. If all souls that had been in the dead were alive, why would the souls that were already in sheol be surprised to see another soul join them after that soul had left the dead person it had been in when souls that were in all that die would join them? It would make no sense if they were surprised to see more souls joining them. Even the trees join in with the dead nations and talk (14:8). Only in a metaphor can past nations that are dead that no longer exist, and trees talk (Isaiah 14:8).
In this passage Rephaim, one word is translated,
1. “The dead,” two words in both the King James and the New King James.
2. “The spirits of the dead,” five words from one word in the New American Standard even though “ruach” (“spirits”) is not in the Hebrew they added it. There is no way to get “spirits” from “rephaim,” but the translators wanted to put immortal spirits in the Bible and added them.
3. “The spirits of the departed,” five words from one word in the New International Version. It also added “spirits” even though “spirits” is not in the Hebrew.
4. “The ancient dead,” three words from one word in the Revised English Bible even though “ancient” is not in the Hebrew, and that the meaning of Rephaim is not even remotely kin to the meaning of “ancient.”
(2) Isaiah 26:14, "They (the nations) are dead (Rephaim), they shall not live; they are deceased, they shall not rise; therefore have you visited and destroyed them, and made all remembrance of them to perish." This is about nations that did not remember God being literally destroyed. It has nothing to do with an "immaterial, invisible part of man" after death that cannot be destroyed. It is hard to believe this passage is used to prove that a person has an immortal immaterial, invisible soul, for if it were speaking of something in a person, then that something is dead, deceased, shall not rise, no resurrection, and all remembrance of that dead something that was in a person has been made to perish. If this were an immortal soul, it would be nothing like the immoral soul of today's theology, it would teach there is no life or resurrection after death for an immortal soul, but this passage is used anyway to somehow prove that a soul is alive after death, alive in either Heaven or Hell even though there is nothing about Heaven or Hell in it.
(3) Isaiah 26:19, "Your dead shall live; their dead bodies shall arise. Awake and sing, you that dwell in the dust; for your dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast forth the dead (Rephaim)." Isaiah is speaking of the nation of Israel that was dead, the people were slaves in bondage to another nation because they had left God, now they had repented and were being restored as a nation. Isaiah is not speaking of the resurrection of any individuals Jews, or the resurrection of any persons or souls.
In Isaiah 26:14, which is speaking of nations, the nations are dead and shall not rise, shall not be restored.
In Isaiah 26:19, which is speaking of Israel, it shall live, shall arise, the nation of Israel shall be restored.
If these passages were speaking of souls that had been in individuals, as Robert Morey in "Death and The Afterlife," on page 79 says he would have these souls both (1) “shall not rise” (Isaiah 26:14), and (2) “shall rise” (Isaiah 26:19).
Note, the King James Version in Isaiah 14:9; 26:14; and 26:19 translated the Hebrew proper name, Rephaim, to “the dead,” the New American standard changed it to “the spirits of the dead” Isaiah in 14:9, and “departed spirits” Isaiah in 26:14 and 26:19. Why did they change what God said; the Hebrew does not say “spirits of the dead” or “departed spirits;” neither one is a proper noun, Rephaim is a proper noun, and there is no authority for changing it into something that is not even close to what is said in the Hebrew Old Testament. Isaiah 26:19 is speaking of the nation of Israel, not of departed spirits. The New International Version in Isaiah 14:9 says “spirits of the departed” when neither “spirit” nor “departed” are in Isaiah 14:9 in the Hebrew but they added both. Is not this just another attempt of the translators to change God’s word to put their view into the Bible, even if they had to change the proper noun God used into something other than a proper noun?
The other five passages are in the poetical books
1. Job 26:5-6, "They that are deceased (Rephaim) tremble beneath the waters and the inhabitants thereof. Sheol is naked before God, and Abaddon ("Destruction" New International Version) has no covering."
2. Psalm 88:10-12, "Will you show wonders to the dead (Rephaim)? Shall they that are deceased arise and praise you? Shall your loving kindness be declared in the grave? Or your faithfulness in destruction?"
3. Proverbs 2:18-19, "For her ("adulteress" New American Standard Version) house sinks down to death, and her tracks lead to the dead; (Rephaim) none who go to her return again, neither do they reach the paths of life."
4. Proverbs 9:18-19, "But he knows not that the dead (Rephaim) are there; that her (the foolish woman or adulteress) guests are in the depths of Sheol."
5. Proverbs 21:16, "The man that wandered out of the way of understanding shall rest in the assembly of the dead (Rephaim)."
In all eight the noun “Rephaim” is changed to “dead” seven times and deceased one time in the King James Version, yet they are somehow used by some to prove a soul that is dead or deceased is not dead. All eight refer to nations or to lost persons, and speak of their death, deceased, destruction, dead, not ever attaining unto the paths of life again, resting with the dead. The dead are simply spoken of as being dead persons or dead nations; nothing is said about a soul being alive after the death of the person. There is nothing in any of the eight passages above that say anything about a soul being alive in Heaven, nothing about Hell, or nothing about the Abraham's bosom after judgment Hell at any time, nothing about Hell before or after the judgment; all eight of the passages where Rephaim is used are an undeniable contradiction to the orthodox doctrine of souls being alive and going to Heaven, Hell, or Abraham’s bosom after the death of the persons the souls had been in.
What do many believe? After adding “soul” that is not in these passages that are used to prove the souls that had been in the dead persons; both the good and the evil souls are now "Rephaim." Many who believe all souls that had been in the dead go immediately to Heaven or Hell at the death of the persons they had been in use it although the rephaim version would make a soul not be in Heaven or Hell where they believe the immaterial, invisible something, whatever a soul is, that is now in a person will be after the person is dead.
(1). The Protestant versions of Hell, that the souls that had been in the dead persons are now alive in Heaven or Hell.
(2). The Abraham’s bosom after judgment version of Hell, that these souls are now alive in hades with some on the good side of hades and some on the bad side (Luke 16), that no soul is now in Heaven or Hell, but both use these passages, they have souls now being in four very difference places simultaneously, (1) Abraham’s bosom, (2) Heaven, (3) Hell, (4) Rephaim.
(3). The Rephaim version of Hell, that souls that had been in both the good and the bad are now together and exist only as shades, or shadows, they are not in Heaven or Hell. Yet, those who believe the Protestant version, or the newer Abraham’s bosom after judgment version of Hell sometimes use "Rephaim" to prove "Hell" even though it would put souls from all the dead persons together, and not where they now believe these souls to be; Rephaim is definitely nothing like the immortal soul of today's theology. The attack on Hell that is coming from many in most all churches is forcing them to take views not many Christians believe. The Rephaim version seems to be used only by Protestants who are trying to prove a person has an immortal soul, but are hard pushed to find any passage to prove it.
Which way do they go? "Rephaim" is used by Protestants in a way that does not agree with what they believe and teach; most Protestants believe that the saved will be in their endless home with Christ in Heaven at death, but step away from this belief and say at death the souls that many believe were in both the saved and unsaved are together, but not together in Heaven or Hell, and souls have only a weak shadowy existence, and will have this shadowy existence unto the resurrection. Even if we did grant that Rephaim is the "immaterial, invisible part of man" after death, it would contradict their beliefs about the "soul" being in Heaven or Hell. It would make all the souls that had been in dead persons be "shades" "shadows." Anyway you look at it, the eight times Rephaim is used they do more to refute the belief of a soul going to Heaven at death than they do to support it. Are they so desperately in need of proof that a person has an immaterial, invisible something in them that can never die that they reach for anything, even if it is far from what they believe and want to find?
Robert Morey, an orthodox Protestant, has written one of the most accepted and used books in defense of the doctrine of Hell that has come out in recent years. In his book he makes an argument for Hell which I think shows just how desperate he is for any kind of proof. In "Death And The Afterlife," On page 79 he said from the meaning of Rephaim, when the body dies, man enters a new kind of existence. Mankind then will exist as spirits creatures, and experiences what angels and other spirits experience. Just as angels are disincarnate energy beings and are composed only of mind or mental energy, and are capable of thought and speech without the need of a body; when a person dies a soul that had been in that person becomes a disembodied energy being and it will be capable of thought and speech without the need of a body. This is nothing more than another desperate attempt to prove there is an "immaterial, invisible part of man" that has some kind of life somewhere without the resurrection. Not a one of the eight passages where Rephaim is used says anything about a Rephaim being like God and angels. Not one of the eight, or any passage in the Bible says God and angels are nothing but thoughts. He must have made that up out of thin air and hoped you would not see it is not in any of the eight passages. I wonder if he sees how low he is making his God if his God were like the Rephaim in the eight passages? That he is making his God be only "shades," "shadows," "ghosts," "name of the dead in sheol," and even making his God be dead.
(1). He has made his God, angels, and souls that are in mankind be nothing more than "energy beings,” to be nothing more than mental thoughts with no substance. Although he did not mention God, he has reduced God to being nothing more than thoughts, an "energy being." Morey's God has no body, no substance of any kind; therefore, Morey's Heaven can exist only in the mind of God who is nothing but mind; Heaven cannot be a real place; he must somehow make God, angels, and souls all have the same thoughts, or the Heaven that was only in the thoughts of each being would be an entirely different Heaven if their thoughts were not exactly the same thoughts. Any being, angels, demons, saved souls, and lost souls would each make their own Heaven or Hell in their own thoughts, if any one being had different thoughts that being would have a different Heaven or Hell than the others.
(2). He has made his God weak. Morey has made souls and angels be described as "Are you also become weak as we: have you become like unto us," even though this passage is speaking of nations, not angels or souls. "God is a Spirit" (John 4:24); Morey has spirits without bodies described as weak, as being nothing more than mental thoughts, which would include his God being described as weak, and being nothing more than mental thoughts. Is his God just weak mental thoughts, is that what your God is like?
(3). He has made the only difference in a soul after the death of the person and his God to be only a difference in intelligence. He says both are nothing but mind without any substance.
(4). He has made his God limited. According to Morey, God does not have any substance; God is only thoughts without a body. This has not entered the mind of most who believe persons now has immortal souls in them, and if it did most would reject it, but their belief that an immortal soul is now in a person means, according to Morey, a soul, God, and all heavenly being are nothing more than thoughts without a body. Robert Morey and others who try to prove persons now has an immortal soul in them has been pushed into this belief. The belief that a person has a dual nature dictates what they can believe about the nature of God. They believe the immortal spirit that is now in a person cannot now be seen for it has no substance; therefore, because God is spirit, then his God can have no substance; his God can be only a mind with no body.
(5). Morey has developed Plato's doctrine that the body is a prison to a soul, and that soul is set free by the death of the body, far beyond what Plato ever did. To put a soul, an "energy being" that is only "mind," back in a body at the resurrection would be to put it back in a prison.
(6). Also, Morey's Hell could only be mental anguish for souls. There would be no body to torment. He has made it impossible for Hell to be anything more than mental pain, only something in the minds of souls that are nothing but minds. None of the other "orthodox Protestant" version of Hell could be possible; therefore, he has made that which almost all Protestants have believed for centuries to be wrong.
(7). Morey has made Paul not know what he was talking about when he said, "It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body...there is also a spiritual body" (1 Corinthians 15:44). He cannot believe in the resurrection. How could he when he has made a soul be composed only of "mind," just as he says the angels and God now are composed only of mind? There could not be a mortal that "must put on immortality" (1 Corinthians 15:54), for his "energy being" is now just as immortal as it will always be, and even before the death of the person he believes a soul is now like God and angels now are. There cannot be a resurrection of any kind of body, not one in the image of Adam, or in the image of Christ, not the earthly body, or the new spiritual body for there will be no body, nothing but "mind." There cannot be a resurrection of the "mind or mental energy," for they tell us that at death this "mind or mental energy" would be just as it would always be; therefore, there could not be any kind of resurrection.
What is their no substance soul and no substance Heaven? What could Heaven be if Heaven has no substance? God made all things out of nothing. If a soul has no substance while it is in a person, it will still be nothing after it leaves the person. Are they saying when God made angels and souls that God made nothing out of nothing; and this God who made nothing out of nothing is Himself nothing?
THOMAS JEFFERSON in a letter to John Adams in 1820 said, "To say that God, angels, and the human soul, are immaterial, is to say they are nothing. At what age of the church the heresy of immaterialism crept in, I do not know; but a heresy it certainly is–Jesus taught nothing of it."
HEAVEN IS A REAL PLACE
“For Christ did not enter a holy place made with hands, a mere copy of the true one, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us,” (Hebrews 9:24; 8:5). The holy place made with hands was a real place that was a copy of the true holy place; a real place could not be a copy of something that did not exist, something that was only a thought in a mind that has no substance. Christ entered “INTO HEAVEN ITSELF.” If Christ and God were only thoughts with no substance, and Heaven was only something in their minds, it would mean a thought entered into the thoughts that were only in the mind of the thought; Morey makes this and many other passages to be pure nonsense. “In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you” (John 14:2-3). Thoughts do not have a house with dwelling places; Christ went to prepare a place for “you” not for thoughts only. Heaven is a real place with real dwelling places for a real “you.” You cannot prepare a place in a place that is not a place. There is not a hint of uncertainty in Christ’s statement about where He was going to prepare a place.
(1). “In my Father’s house.” Where is the father’s house? In Heaven, not on Earth.
(2). “I go to prepare a place for you.” Christ was on Earth when He said, “I go.” Where does He say He is going; to His Father’s house which is in Heaven.
NOTE, I have tried to give the views of the majority in each in the above Protestants versions of Hell. In each of them, there are many individuals and/or small groups who believe in many different variations of that believed by the majority.
Summary, Protestants that believe in Hell contradict each other as to what and where Hell will be.
1. Some believe Hell to be a lake of fire and brimstone.
2. Some believe Hell will be banishment away from the presence of God.
3. Some believe Hell to be only mental anguish.
4. Some believe God will give most of mankind to Satan to torment, as he wants to.
5. Some believe God will not only be doing the tormenting, and He will have great pleasure in the tormenting of souls.
6. Many believe a version of Hell that makes God be infinite cruel by creating million foreknowing that He was creating them with no chance to not be in Hell.
7. Some believe many other contradictory versions of Hell; without doubt there are many other Protestants versions of Hell that I have not covered.
NINE OTHER VERSIONS OF HELL
(1). The Abraham's bosom, or the after judgment Hell; a newer version of Hell. This version is based almost entirely on an interpretation of Luke 16:19-31 (see chapter eight, part one). Most members of the Church of Christ, the Christian Church and many Protestants believe it although it is not generally accepted as being orthodox or traditional Protestant. In this version all who do not obey Christ will go to Hell, but not unto after the coming of Christ and the judgment; and no one goes to Heaven or Hell before the judgment, no one is asleep in graves and no one will not be resurrected from graves at the coming of Christ. According to this version, at death all are alive in an intermediate holding place where the lost are alive and tormented, and the saved are alive and rewarded in a place called "Abraham's bosom" in Luke 16. Instead of all being in Heaven or in Hell unto the second coming of Christ, all are alive either on the good side or on the bad side, and at His coming Christ will take the living souls out of Abraham’s bosom, not out of graves that they are not in, at the resurrection that is not a resurrection, and the judgment, and judge them a second time to see whether He made a mistake the first time and had put the souls that had been in them on the wrong side of Abraham’s bosom.
This view has two places where God is going to torture all the souls that had been in the lost; (1) in one side of hades that is a temporary place of torture, and will last only unto the second coming of Christ, (2) and "Hell," which after the second coming of Christ Hell will be a permanent place where God will torture most souls without ever an end, an endless being tormented by God. It has no deathless souls that are now in Heaven or Hell, and no persons or souls will not be in either Heaven or Hell unto after the judgment. This is the view I was taught from the time I became a Christian, and I believed it a long time. I have many books and tracts in which well-known preachers and teachers, such as H. Leo Boles, E. M. Zerr, B. W. Johnson, and many others who teach this view; but lately it seems to be dying out in the church, and is being replaced by going immediately to Heaven or Hell at death before the Resurrection or Judgment, particularly at funerals where preachers often say a soul that had been in the dead person is now in Heaven. Most all think of and speak of their loved ones, not souls that had been in their loved ones, as now being already in Heaven with Jesus, not in Abraham's bosom unto the judgment.
In this version of Hell, “When a ‘faithful’ member dies, he or she does not ‘go’ to heaven or hell. The person is not ‘sentenced’ by Christ to heaven or hell until ‘Judgment Day’…There will be a resurrection of both the righteous and the unrighteous (Acts 24:15).” http://bible-the-real-world.awardspace.com/html/church_of_christ.html
(2). Edward Fudge version, The short Hell, God will torment the lost in Hell for a short time, then Hell will end, He uses the name Hell as if it was a name of a real place that is in the Bible, but thinks that real place will last for only a limited time, and will end with the total destruction of all souls in it, “The Fire That Consumes,” 1982 edition. Brother Fudge believes there is a Hell and all the lost will be in it, but believes it will be a short Hell that will end with the death of those that has been in Hell for a short time, and they will be tormented by God for as long as they are in Hell. He says, “They will be sentenced to hell where they will die” (“The Fire That Consumes,” 1982 edition), but did not give one passage that tells us the lost will “be sentenced to hell.”
Roger Dickson believes the duration of Hell will fit the crime, and then will end. It will be short for some souls, and longer for other souls. He says, "After the stripes have been given, then the destruction occurs, for which there is no reverse." "Life, Death, And Beyond," page 162ff. If I understand him right, he thinks the souls that had been in the lost will go to Hell, but the not so bad souls will not be tormented by God as long as the very bad. After the "punishment matches the crime" he says the souls will then be destroyed (page 163). (1) "Shall be beaten with many stripes" (Luke 12:47). This is used to prove there will be an end of a soul after the stripes. He seems to think, "Beaten with few stripes" could not be as long as "beaten with many stripes;” therefore, could not take forever; some souls would be tormented longer than others, but the torment will end with death for all. (2) This short Hell is different from the Church of God short Hell in that it will not be on this earth, and there will be no second chance, Fudge’s short Hell will end with death from which there will be no resurrection. (3) The Universalist also has a short place of torment by God, but it will end with all being saved.
The short Hell implies that there is a soul that is in a person and that God will torment all souls for the sins of the lost persons that souls had been in, some souls tormented much longer then God will torment others souls.
1. The fate of those not in Christ according to the Bible.
Death - Resurrection - Judgment - Second death
2. The fate of those not in Christ according to Fudge.
Death - Resurrection – Judgment - Torment in Hell – Second death
During the Judgment there most likely will be fear and regret when the lost see what they have lost by not being a Christian. Fudge then adds both a place and a time between the Judgment and the second death that is not in the Bible, he names the added place “Hell” and says that before the second death that God will torment souls in this place he called Hell, some of the souls tormented a shorter time, some souls tormented a longer time.
We are sometimes told there will be life and torment after the judgment in the lake of fire a short time for some, but a longer time for others. There is nothing in the Bible about some souls being tormented by God in the lake of fire longer than He will torment other souls, or about any place were God will torment persons or souls that had been in persons after the judgment; that there will be such a place, whether it is short or endless it is a 100% made-up addition to the Bible to teach God will torment the souls that had been most persons in Hell before He lets the souls die, whether the torment is endless or short. It is persons that commits “murderers, and fornicators, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars” (Revelation 21:8) not souls; it is the persons that committed these sins that will die the second death, not souls that cannot die, but we are told these deathless souls will die because of the sins of the persons they had been in; but God will torment these souls before He lets them die.
Death, pain, and torment. Natural death can be painless, or with much pain. A person can die in their sleep with no pain, or suffer for years and die slowly. Violent death is the same. It can be quick and painless, or death can come slowly with much pain. Two persons killed in an explosion; one is blown to bits instantly with no time for any pain, the other one is hurt badly and takes hours or even days to die with much pain. After the judgment, death is the punishment, not being tormented by God, the black darkness of endless nothing. There is nothing said about some dying with little pain, and other dying with much suffering. Not anything about God tormenting any after the resurrection and before their second death. The second death is not a place of life for a short time or a longer time, there is nothing about God tormenting them in a place called Hell or any other place.
F. LAGARD SMITH, a teacher of Bible at Lipscomb University in his book, “After Life, A Glimpse of Eternity Beyond Death’s Door,” also teachers there is a Hell, but a Hell that will end, no one will be tormented without end. He says on page 191 that sooner or later there is a point that the torment in Hell will end.
Death and only death is the wages of sin; there is no passage in the Bible that says wages of sin for a soul that will be torment in “Hell” for a short time any more than there is one that says souls will be torment in a “Hell” that has no end. The lake of fire is not a real literal lake of fire, it is a picture of death, any living being cast into a lake of fire would be dead almost instantly. John clearly said the lake of fire “is the second death” (Revelation 20:8), not life for a short time for some, but a longer life of torment for others. Their punishment is not being tormented by God unto they have paid for their sins and then the torment will end; their punishment is an endless death, an endless punishment, (Matthew 25:46). A place called “Hell” does not exist in the Bible, not a short Hell, or an endless Hell. Hell is altogether a pagan teaching of man that was not in the church unto the Dark Age Catholic Church.
(3). Christadelphians version of Hell. This version says those who never heard the Gospel will never be raised. Death is the end of them. Only those who heard the Gospel will be raised at the second coming of Christ, and judged to see whether they were faithful. The faithful will have endless life on Earth, which they believe will be restored to be like Eden before Adam sinned. The unfaithful of those who heard the Gospel and were raised will die the second death.
(4). Church of God version of Hell (and others). According to this version both Heaven and Hell will be on this earth. After the resurrection of earthly bodies on this restored earth, all will be given a second chance to accept Christ. Most will, but the few who will not accept Christ will suffer the second death; their torment will end in death from which there will never be a resurrection. The Church of God believes the saved persons will be raised and live on the earth restored to be the way it was before Adam sinned, with a body like Adam before he was put out of the garden; that no person will ever be in Heaven. I have not been able to find how they think Adam's body was different before he was put out of the garden than it was after. Many Premillennialists who are in most Protestant churches believe this version of Hell, or one that is very similar to it.
(5). Universalist version of Hell. The "age lasting" Hell. This Hell will last for only an age; then all will be saved. Universalist calls it a time of "attitude adjustments," or "age-during correction." They do not see it as God torturing souls in a literal lake or anything like that, they see it as simply a time when God will be correcting or teaching souls further unto they are fit for His kingdom. All, even the most evil, will eventually end up in Heaven. See chapter nine, “Universalist–The ‘Age Lasting’ Hell.”
(6). Seventh Day Advent version of Hell. They believe that at the second coming of Christ the unrighteous will be kill, the righteous will be taken back to Heaven for a 1,000 years. During the 1,000 years only Satan and his angels will inhabit the earth. At the end of the 1,000 years Christ will return to earth with the saved, and the unrighteous will be raised for judgment. Satan gathers his angels, and will the help of the resurrected unrighteous attempt to interfere with the judgment, they will be destroyed in a military battle that will take place outside of Jerusalem; they will never be in Hell. The judgment and destruction of the lost will take place on this earth. Their Hell will be on this earth and will last only unto those in it are burned too ashes, the second death. The saved will live forever with earthly bodies on a restored earth on which there will be no evil. Advent believe they will live forever on all this earth much as we now do, not just in Jerusalem, they will build houses, plant crops, and meet together each Sabbath Day. No person or soul that had been in any person will be in Heaven after the 1,000 years.
Just as with the Church of God version of Hell, many Premillennialists who are mixed in most Protestant churches also believe this version of Hell, or one that is very near the same. The number of those who are called Protestant but do not believe any of the orthodox Protestant versions of Hell is large and growing.
(7). Latter-day Saints (Mormons) version of Hell. They believe there will be three Kingdoms, Celestial, Terrestrial, and Telestial Kingdoms. According to Mormons all spirit were once in Heaven, some spirits were judged worthily to come to earth where they will end up in three states of “glory.” The highest, the Celestial Kingdoms will always live on this earth with cities, houses, animals, can have children and all things much as we now have. The two lower Kingdoms, the Terrestrial and Telestial Kingdoms will not be on this earth, but they do not seem to know, or do not tell outsiders just where they will be, but no soul in these two kingdoms will not be in Heaven where they had been before they came to earth, and they will not be on earth after the coming of Christ; those in these two Kingdoms that will not be on this earth will not be allowed to have children. All will be raised from the dead except for the sons of perdition, which they say are the once faithful Mormons that become apostates and left the Mormon Church; I have not been able to find if they say they have any revelation about what will be the fate of the other two kingdoms other then they will have little or no glory. Those who are not Mormons can go no higher then the lower Telestial Kingdom, which seems to be a very low state that is someplace not on this earth.
The Latter-day Saints Millennium is unlike any other version of the Millennium; in their Millennium they have both mortals and resurrected immortal living together on earth in the Millennium, having children, building houses, and doing most all things that normal people do now.
(8). Jehovah’s Witnesses, the grave is Hell. Jehovah’s Witness do not believe in the resurrection of the lost at the judgment; when the lost die, they are dead forever, Christ will not bring the lost dead out of their tombs. They believe the grave is Hell, and all go to it at death. There is no knowledge or torment in this Hell, just sleep or death. Some from many different groups believe this version of Hell. They get support mostly from the older translations like the King James Version, and most who believe it think the newer translations that translate only Gehenna into Hell are wrong. Jehovah’s Witnesses believe Gehenna is a trash dump. Gehenna is not the Hell they believe in. The Hell they believe in is going on now with all the dead in it, both the good and the bad are asleep in graves; all are asleep in this Hell but only the saved will wake up at the Resurrection. All the dead are now unconscious, and there is no torment of the wicked or reward of the righteous in "Hell" where all the dead, both the good and the bad now are. In this version Hell will end for the saved at the resurrection. They believe Hell is the “common grave of mankind” where all people go when they die and they are not conscious there.
This version is nothing more than a renaming of sheol and hades much like the King James Version does. In today's English Hell has come to mean a place of endless torment after death, and to translate hades into Hell is an untrue translation.
Jehovah’s Witness believe that only 144,000 chosen people will ever enter Heaven, and they will be changed to a spiritual body to live in Heaven where they will forever live and help Jesus govern the church that will forever be on this earth. All the saved will live forever on this restored earth, but the 144,000 that have been made perfect and are in Heaven.
A. B. ROBINSON, September 1996 (A Jehovah's Witnesses), "We do not have the word 'hell' in the NWT. We translate gehenna as gehenna, hades as hades and sheol as sheol. By doing this we can get the true import of these words. Gehenna is a garbage dump and sheol and hades often refer to the grave. We believe everyone who dies goes to 'hell' or sheol (hades). The dead are unconscious, asleep if you will (Ecc 9:5,19 and 1 Thes 4:13-16) and will remain such until they are resurrected. We also believe that 'hell' will be emptied, as is clearly stated in Rev 20:13.”
BRIAN HOLT in an e-mail to me said, "JW's do not have the word ‘hell’ in the NWT," then he said in the e-mail that everyone who dies goes to Hell. If Hell is not in their Bible, how do they know that sheol is Hell?
“THAT IS WHAT JEHOVAH’S WITNESSES TEACH”
CLARK PINNOCK said, "It seems that a new criterion of truth has been discovered which says that if Adventists or liberals hold any view, that view must be wrong. Apparently a truth claim can be decided by its association and does not need to be tested by public criteria in open debate. Such an argument, though useless in intelligent discussion, can be effective with the ignorant who are fooled by such rhetoric.” “Four Views on Hell,” page 161.
I have been told that what I believe "is what Jehovah's Witnesses have been teaching for years." One person said to me, “You believe the same thing Jehovah's Witnesses believe. Why don't you join them and leave us alone?” The problem with this is (1) I do not believe as they do, that a grave is Hell; that I believe what Jehovah’s Witnesses believe is an absolute false charge that is made for only one reason, to seek to scare anyone away by associating it with atheists, evolutionists, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Seventh Day Adventists, and others; I think those that do such are not being honest. (2) That most all denominations, whether they are occults, liberals, or whatever, teach many things that the Bible teaches, and many things that the Bible does not teach. Nothing is right or wrong because a denomination teaches it, not even right or wrong if the Jehovah's Witnesses denomination teaches it. It is right if the Bible teaches it, or wrong if the Bible does not teach it. Catholic, Baptist, Jehovah's Witnesses, Church of God, and all others each teach many things that the Bible teaches, and each one teaches many things that the Bible does not teach. Anything is right if the Bible teaches it even if the Jehovah's Witnesses teach it, and wrong if the Bible does not teach it. Jehovah’s Witnesses teach adultery is a sin; is it wrong to teach that adultery is a sin because Jehovah’s Witnesses teach it to be?
To say, "That is what the Jehovah's Witnesses teach," is said for the same reason the Baptist says, "That is water salvation," or "That is Campbellism." Their real problem is not that one of the occults teach it, but that they have no other answer, and know that they can turn many off just by saying, "That is what Jehovah's Witnesses teach," is just as the Baptist did with, "That is water salvation." They could not show that a person can be saved without baptism; therefore, they would say, "You believe in water salvation" for they knew this would make others prejudice and not believe the Bible. Now the same thing is being done to anyone who does not believe in Hell by saying, "You are nothing but a Jehovah's Witnesses," even though what I believe is far from what the Jehovah's Witnesses teach, they believe there is a Hell, but it is going on now, and I do not believe the Bible says anything about any kind of Hell; not one that is going on now, or one that will be at any time after death. Unto the resurrection when ALL the dead, both the saved and the lost, will be resurrected from their graves, death is death, death is not any kind of life, or any kind of Hell anyplace.
The Moslem religion believes in endless torment; can we say it is wrong because those who believe in endless torment believe something the Moslems teach? No, endless torment is wrong because the Bible does not teach it.
Why? What is the real reason they say that is what Jehovah's Witnesses teaches? I think one reason is that they just do not want to deal with it, do not want to take the time. The truth is that if Jehovah's Witnesses did believe as I do, they do not, but even if they did as long as the Bible teaches it I would say that it is great that they believe the Bible on that point, and I would wish that they believed the Bible on all points. If you made two lists, one a list of things any denomination believes that is not in the Bible, and a list of things that denomination believes that is in the Bible, both lists would be long. The persons who say "That is Jehovah's Witnesses teaching" believes many of the same things that would be on the list of things the Jehovah's Witnesses believes.
Some of the many things Jehovah's Witnesses teach that I do not believe.
1. Jesus was not the Son of God.
2. The Millennium.
3. Only 144,000 will go to Heaven.
4. All the rest of the saved will live forever on this earth for all eternity.
5. They don't believe in blood transfusions.
6. Hell is a grave and all the dead are now in Hell. Unfortunately, it is not true that they do not believe in Hell, but Jehovah’s Witnesses believe in a Hell that is now going on. The Hell they believe in is not the God Slandering Hell that many Protestants believe in, but they do believe in Hell, just not one of the many orthodox Protestant versions of Hell although many Premillennialists who are called orthodox Protestants believe much as they do, that Hell is or will be a grave.
If, "That is what Jehovah's Witnesses believes" makes anything wrong, it is such a broad argument that there is nothing in the Bible that is not destroyed by it, for there is no Bible teaching that is not believed by many religions.
Probable origin of this version of Hell. Sheol is translated Hell in the King James Version thirty-one times, and grave thirty-one times. It puts all in Hell or in graves, both the good and the bad, and a grave is a place that those in it know nothing, according to the King James Version Hell will end at the resurrection. If one believes the mistranslation of the King James Version, then he or she must believe a grave is Hell version of Hell for the Jehovah’s Witnesses belief about Hell is clearly taught in the Old Testament of the King James Version. The Jehovah's Witnesses and others who believe this version have all the proof they need in the mistranslations in the King James Version; I cannot see anyway that a person that believes the King James Version just as it is would not be forced believe in the same Hell that the Jehovah’s Witnesses believes in, the Hell they believe in is clearly taught in the King James Version.
(9). Christian Science Version of Hell. Both Heaven and Hell are only a state of mind; they believe there is no real Heaven or Hell.
THE BIBLE VERSION OF HELL
There is no Bible version of Hell. Both the name Hell and the concept, a place where God will forever torment the souls that had been in most of mankind was not known about in Old or New Testament times, not known about unto the Dark Age. Christ or Paul used neither the place nor the name. An endless place of torment for souls was not known about by anyone unto long after the last page of the Bible.
WHICH HELL DO YOU BELIEVE IN?
Most versions of Hell are based on the belief that a person has a soul in them that is immortal from birth and is not subject to death. That death is not death, the dead are more alive then the living, "You shall not surely die."
1. Some believe Satan is the tormenter. According to Jonathan Edward and most Hell fire preachers, and most Protestant in the past believed Satan will be doing the tormenting of all that are in Hell forever.
2. Some believe God is the tormenter. Today it has been changed to most believing God, not Satan will be doing the tormenting.
3. Some that are in many denominations believe Hell will be on this earth.
4. Some believe Hell will only last for a while; but will end with all that are in Hell being saved and going to Heaven.
5. Some believe Hell will only last unto the ones in it have paid for their sins, a short Hell, and then all that are in this Hell will be destroyed.
6. Some believe Hell is hot.
7. Some believe Hell is cold.
8. Some believe Hell is dark.
9. Some believe Hell is only mental anguish.
10. Some believe Hell is in a chamber inside of the earth.
11. Some believe Hell is who knows where. Most, but not all, now realize there is not a chamber inside of the earth where all souls are kept as it has been believed to be for centuries by Catholics and Protestant, but now have moved it. Now who knows where they now think Hell is, maybe somewhere out in space.
12. Some believe Hell is metaphorical, it is not literally hot, cold or dark; we cannot understand what it is really like, and are given pictures to tell us how bad it is.
13. Some believe Hell exists now, and the souls that had been in the lost dead are now being tormented in it.
14. Some believe Hell will not exist unto after the judgment.
15. Some believe all the dead are now alive in Abraham’s bosom, and will be unto the coming of Christ and the Judgment, and then the lost will be moved from Abraham’s bosom to Hell, the saved moved to Heaven.
16. Some believe Hell now exists with the angels that sinned in it, but no person will be in Hell unto after the judgment.
17. Some believe Hell is a place of separation from God without any torment from God, a place where God is not at, that the lost will have some kind of life that is life that does not come from God. They believe that although God is omnipresent (present in all places at the same time), nevertheless they believe God is not present in Hell. They believe those in Hell are separated from God; they believe death is separation from God, and the second death is an endless life separated from God.
18. Some believe Hell is a place of “fire and brimstone.” If you go back in time 50 or 100 years, most all preachers were teaching "Hell" to be a place of "fire and brimstone." Today "fire and brimstone" are almost never used by preachers, or in today's theology. Do you believe in the "Hell" of today or the "Hell" of 100 years ago?
There is no majority view of Hell today as there was in the past; no matter what view of Hell a person has that view is only a small part of those that believe in all of the many other versions Hells; if a person believes any one of the many versions of Hell, they must disbelieve all the other versions; therefore, every one that believes in any one of the many versions of Hells disagrees and are in conflict with all the vast majority that believe in the many other versions of Hells. Believes in Hell are becoming more divided and more in conflict with each other as time goes by; even if there were a Hell it would not be possible for more than one of the many version of Hell to be the truth; therefore, all the other versions, the majority that believe in Hells would be vain worship (Matthew 15:9).
DIVISIONS OVER WHAT WILL BE IN HELL?
What part of a person will be in Hell? It has been believed by most that it is a bodiless soul, not a person, that will be in Heaven or Hell, but now many are saying no it is not a soul, but it is a bodiless spirit that is the immortal being that is in a person, that a soul is not immortal; therefore, (1) some say it is a soul that is now in a person that will be in Heaven or Hell, (2) but others now say, not so, it is a spirit that will be in Heaven or Hell. Not only are there many divisions on what Hell is, there are also divisions on which immaterial, bodiless being they believe will be in Hell. One of the many examples of those that have switched from believing a soul is immortal to a spirit being the immortal something that is in a person is Robert L. Kramer in “Present Truth,” volume 10, page 12.
DIVISIONS OVER WHEN A SOUL
OR WHEN A SPIRIT WILL BE IN HELL
When will a soul, or when will a spirit be in Hell, will it be at death, or not be unto after the resurrection and judgment? Many say Hell begins at death; many others say not so, no soul or no spirit will be in Hell unto after the judgment; the strange thing is that there are many that say it is a soul that will be in Hell at one time, then at another time the same person will say it is a spirit that will be in Hell; they do not seem to know what they believe will be in Hell, (1) a person, (2) a soul, (3) or a spirit.
HELL HAS BEEN MOVED
Pagan philosophers mostly believed a soul was somewhere underground unto it was reincarnated. The first time Hell is used in the King James Version, it is a place on this earth, and it was the punishment and scattering of the nation of Israel (Deuteronomy 32:22-26). "Though they dig into Hell" (Amos 9:27 King James Version). The Church in the Dark Age believed Hell was an underground chamber. Yesterday’s Hell of the Middle Age Hell was inside of the earth as it is in, “The Divine Comedy ” by Dante Alighieri. Both the Catholic Church and the "Apostle's creed," which was used by many Protestants says Christ descended into Hell at His death; and preached to souls in prison. Many encyclopedias and lexicons still say Hell is under ground inside of the earth.
THE NEW OXFORD AMERICAN DICTIONARY says, “hell ‘hel’ a place regarded in various religions as a spiritual realm of evil and suffering, often traditionally depicted as a place of perpetual fire beneath the earth where the wicked are punished after death.”
When I was a child, I heard repeatedly that the Devil lived under the ground, and he would get you if you were bad; all where I grow up, all that I know anything about what they believed, mostly Methodist, believed Hell to be under the earth. Now almost no one believes Hell is under ground; it has been moved to some dark place on the backside of some far away no one knows where place. Most who believed Hell to be under the earth also believed the earth will end at the coming of Christ; I have never heard them explain how the earth will be destroyed, but the Hell that is under ground, inside of the destroyed earth that will not be destroyed; never the lest this is what most Protestants did believe for many centuries, and some still do. O-well, one place is as good as any other for there is no Bible teaching for any of them, they are all man made, and believing any of them is to believe a lie. "But in vain do they worship me, teaching as their doctrines the precepts of men" (Matthew 15:9). The only sure thing is that what is believed about Hell is that Hell is always changing to suit the times and the denominations.
BELIEVERS IN HELL must do away with death. If death is real, if when God said death He meant what He said when He said, “the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23), then Hell cannot be.
BELIEVERS IN HELL must prove that there is an immortal soul that is dwelling in a person, and this something that no one knows what it is, it is now just as immortal as it will be after the judgment; and this who know what this “soul” is that Christ will save; and whatever “it” is, it is believed that only “it” will be in Heaven, not you for according to most that believe in Hell, you will never be in Heaven for you will not exist after you are dead.
BELIEVERS IN HELL must make words like destroy, perish, die, death, lost be used only with a theological sense. If they are used, "In the fair, stipulated, and well-established meaning of the terms," then Hell cannot be.
BELIEVERS IN HELL must prove that Hell is in the Bible, both the name and the particular place they call Hell. If they do not prove there is a Hell, but teach it, they have added to the Bible.
BELIEVERS IN HELL must prove that the "nehphesh" animals have in Genesis 1:20; 1:21; 1:24; 1:30; 2:19 is mortal, but the same "nehphesh" men have in Genesis 2:7 is immortal.
FROM WHERE DID HELL COME?
It came from pagan philosophers, and was brought into the church along with Purgatory, the sale of indulgences, Limbo, worship of Mary and saints, Nether World, Holy Water, the rosary, forbidding Priests to marry, the crucifix-worshiping the cross-crosses on building, forbidding eating of meat on Friday, candle-burning, and many other teachings; and was opposed by such men as Luther, Tyndale, Moses Lord, E. D. Slough, Ashley Sidney Johnson, and many others. It came into the church in the Dark Age from Pagan Greek philosophers. They added things like Satan has a red suit, horns, and pitchfork and he is forever tormenting the damned. This view of Hell was made up and taught by the Catholic Church in the Dark Age to create fear of leaving the church. The church in the Dark Age, and the translators of the King James Bible were more influenced by this Pagan philosophy and writers of that time then they were from the teaching of God.
(1). Hell and other pagan teaching were brought into the Bible by reinterpreting four words in the King James Version, but much fewer times in later translations, and none at all in many translations. The American Standard Version, which many say is the most accurate translation uses Hell only 13 times; and even then has a footnote that says, "Gr. Gehenna" 12 times, and "Gr. Tartarus" 1 time. ("This honored version of 1901, long held to be the most accurate translation in the English language" Star Bible catalog, page 3, 1996).
GROWLER 1995 ENCYCLOPEDIA ASPS, "In Greek Mythology, Hades is the underworld ruled by the god of that name, who is also known as Pluto; in Nurse Mythology, Hel is a cold and shadowy subterranean realm." Both Hel and Hell are from the same root word–"Kel."
THE AMERICAN HERITAGE DICTIONARY, "KEL–1. O-grade from kal 1. A. Hell, from Old English Hell; B. HEL, from Old Nurse Hel, the underworld, goddess of death." Page 2108.
COMPTON'S 1995 ENCYCLOPEDIA, "Hell and Hades." "There is no fully developed teaching about Hell in the New Testament…Only in the course of later church history was it elaborated into official church doctrine."
ENCYCLOPEDIA BRITANNICA, "Old English. Hel, a Teutonic word from a root meaning 'to cover.'" Volume 2, page 402,
ENCYCLOPEDIA AMERICANA, "Much confusion & misunderstanding has been caused through the early translators of the Bible persistently rendering the Hebrew Sheol and the Greek Hades and Gehenna by the word hell. The simple transliteration of these words by the translators of the revised editions of the Bible has not sufficed to appreciably clear up this confusion and misconception." Volume 14, page 81.
WIKIPEDIA, the free Encyclopedia, “The modern English word Hell is derived from Old English hel, helle (about 725 AD…) reaching into the Anglo–Saxon pagan period, and ultimately from Proto–Germanic *halja, meaning ‘one who covers up or hides something’. (3) The word has cognates in related Germanic languages such as Old Frisian helle, helle, Old Saxon hellja, Middle Dutch helle (modern Dutch hel), Old High German helle (Modern German Hölle), and Gothic halja. (3) Subsequently, the word was used to transfer a pagan concept to Christian theology and its vocabulary.” From the article “Hell.”
DYREL COLLINS, “We assume that the word ‘Hell’ is a Bible word chosen by God to reveal his will. It is neither an O. T. nor N. T. word, but rather the word chosen by Bible translators to translate, Sheol (Grave), Hades…Gehenna (Valley of Hinnom) and Tartarus (The abode of angels that sinned). THUS ONE WORD IS CHOSEN TO TRANSLATE FOUR DIFFERENT PLACES AND IDEAS. The word ‘Hell’ therefore came to have a meaning beyond the concept involved in each word, but borrowing certain aspects from each and adding the idea of everlasting conscious torment for ‘a soul which cannot die.’” “Immortality: Only In Christ,” Star Bible Publications, Church of Christ, 2002.
SAMUEL CSONKA, "Every good Bible student knows Hades is not Hell." Truth Magazine, page 17, 1995. Then why do so many in the Lord's church teach it is?
THE DICTIONARY OF NEW TESTAMENT THEOLOGY, "The word Gehenna does not occur in the LXX or Greek literature...In contrast with later Christian writings and ideas, the torments of hell are not described in the NT...Neither does the NT contain the idea that Satan is the prince of Gehenna, to whom sinners are handed over for punishment." Volume 2, page 208–209.
CLINTON D. HAMILTON, who believed in Hell, said, "The New Testament is loaded with metaphors that describe Hell," and then he says Gehenna is one of the metaphors. On the page before he said that Gehenna is not used in secular Greek literature, not used in the Septuagint, and not by Josephus in the last part of the first century in any of his writings, “Truth Commentaries,” 1 Peter, pages 367-386, Guardian of Truth Foundation. When he said they did not use Gehenna, he is using it to mean Hell; therefore, he is saying Hell was not used by any of the above, neither is it in any of the Apocryphal books.
DOWNLOAD MY FREE BOOK “Resurrection And Immortality—Life In Christ” Free at: http://www.robertwr.com/resurrection.pdf
Table of Contents
Chapter 1: “The nature of man–what is man?”
Chapter 2: “Life or Death
Chapter 3: “The great doctrines of the Bible”
Chapter 4: “From where came Hell, from man or God?”
1. Unquenchable fire, weeping, gnashing of teeth
2. Old Testament history of Gehanna
3. Gehenna used by Christ on four occasions
4. The vanishing Hell
5. Twenty-nine plus version of Hell
Three Catholic versions of Hell
Seventeen plus Protestant versions of Hell
Nine other versions of Hell
Chapter 5: Sheol, Hades, and Tartarus
Chapter 6: The thirty-one Hell passages
Chapter 7: A strange and unexplainable silence of the Old Testament on punishment and life after death, life, death, torment, destruction, destroy, perish, die, and end
Chapter 8: Figurative language, metaphors, and symbolical passage
Part one, The rich man
Part two, The symbolic pictures in Revelation
Part three, The forever and ever of the King James Version
Chapter 9: Universalist, The "age lasting" Hell
Chapter 10: The results of attributing evil Pagan teachings to God
Chapter 11: Historical proof of the changing of the teaching of the Bible
Chapter 12: Israel’s destruction, scripture about the destruction of Israel that are misapplied to Hell
1. Israel’s weeping, gnashing of teeth
2. Outer darkness
3. Matthew 24, Preterits Eschatology, Realized Eschatology
4. A D 70 Doctrine
5. The day of the Lord
6. 2 Peter 3, After the Resurrection
The fate of those who not are in Christ
The fate of those who are in Christ
ALL THIRTEEN CHAPTERS ARE AT http://robertwr.com/resurrection.pdf
OTHER WEB SITES of William Robert West, Church of Christ
“THE RAPTURE AND ISRAEL” can be downloaded free at http://www.robertwr.com/rapture.pdf
THE PRINTED BOOK AT BOOKSTORES ask for ISBN 978-1452895352
Ch. 1 After the Judgment where will we spend eternity?
Ch. 2 When will the secret rapture come to pass? Will you miss it?
Ch. 3 Will there be cars without drivers after the rapture?
Ch. 4 What is the battle of Armageddon?
Ch. 5 Is Armageddon coming soon?
Ch. 6 Will Israel be restored? Will there be a worldwide conversion of Jews?
Ch. 7 Will the temple be rebuilt in Jerusalem?
Ch. 8 Will animal sacrifices be restored?
Ch. 9 What are the signs of the second coming of Christ?
Ch. 10 Who are the 144,000?
Ch. 11 Will there be one, two, or three resurrections?
Ch. 12 What is the "time of the Gentiles"?
Ch. 13 What is the "gap" theory?
Ch. 1 4 Who is the thirteenth tribe?
“THE INDICTMENT OF ETERNAL TORMENT: THE SELF-NEGATION OF A MONSTROUS DOCTRINE,” by E. D. Slough, a preacher in the Church of Christ, F. L. Rowe Publisher, 1914. I have put this book on the web free at
“LIFE IN CHRIST” by Edward White was published in 1875 may have been one of the first major protest against the doctrine of an immortal soul. For the most part this book teaches the truth on the doctrine of a soul and Hell however there are a few things in it that are unbiblical. I have put this book on the web free at
“A HISTORY OF THE DOCTRINE OF THE SOUL” by D. M. Canright. Although there are a few things in this book that I do not believe to be right, it is the best I have seen on the history of the origin of the belief in a soul being in a person that will leave the person at their death, that this belief came from pagan sources, and is not taught in the Bible.
GOOD WEB PAGES BY MEMBERS OF THE CHURCH OF CHRIST.
(1) Articles by Ken Fortier and C. Dickinson
(2) "The Maxey—Thrasher Debate" A debate on the eternal destiny of the wicked between two Gospel preachers.