Hell

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Hell – 17 February 2008

Have you ever wondered what is really meant by “hell’? These definitions are found in Webster’s Seventh New Collegiate Dictionary: a nether world in which the dead continue to exist; Hades; the nether realm of the devil and the demons in which the damned suffer everlasting punishment.

In Romans 12:20 of the Bible the expression “burning coals” is used to describe a feeling of guilt or conviction:

20 "But if your enemy is hungry, feed him, and if he is thirsty, give him a drink; for in so doing you will heap burning coals upon his head."
~ New American Standard Bible

I believe that hell is not so much a physical lake of fire or place of physical torment (since such a state does not fit with the retribution of a loving God) as it is an eternal conviction, or constant burning reminder, of the unrepented evil that one did in life. This is not the same as remorse, because remorse leads to repentance; and repentance is the key to salvation.

Revelation 20:14-15 says:

14 Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death.

15 If anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he [or she] was thrown into the lake of fire.
~ New International Version

The King James Version of the above passage says that “death and hell were cast into the lake of fire.” (Revelation 20:14)

In the King James Version of the Bible, the word “hell” is mentioned 31 places in the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament) and 23 places in the New Testament for a total of 54. The New American Standard Bible and the New International Version each mention the word “hell” only in the New Testament: 13 places and 14 places respectively; while in the New Living Translation, the word “hell” appears twice in the Hebrew Bible (OT) and 17 times in the New Testament for a total of 19.

No matter where you look in the scriptures, hell appears to be a very unpleasant experience whether it entails physical, emotional, or spiritual pain.
 


"Joyful Curmudgeon"
An oxymoron?
No! I see all the beauty of God's creation and I'm joyful.  At the same time, I see all the suffering and corruption going on in the world, and feel called to help expose and end it so that we may have true peace and compassion.

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