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What and Where is Hell Anyway?

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message 1: by Jerry (last edited May 11, 2009 09:35PM) (new)

Jerry Melisaratos | 31 comments When most people think of hell, they think of Satan in that red suit with two horns and a pitchfork somewhere in the depths of the Earth where souls are tormented day and night on some kind of giant char broiler. Do something wrong in life and you're condemned to an eternal damnation. None of this could be further from the truth, and we should know better, "Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices" (II Corinthians 2:11).


The English word hell comes from the Anglo-Saxon hel, or in the genitive case helle, which means a "hidden place", from the Anglo-Saxon word helan, meaning "to hide". The word for hell in the Old Testament is the Strong's Concordance word #7585 sheol in Hebrew, which simply means "grave." In the New Testament it's the Strong's word #1067 geenna, or gehenna, in Greek, which was the name of a valley outside of Jerusalem where the city trash was burned. The word was meant to portray a state of degradation and tormented death. In eleven other locations of the New Testament it is the Strong's word #86 hades in Greek, meaning "unseen place" or "grave". Whether it's the word sheol in the Old Testament, or gehenna or hades in the New Testament, they all mean either the grave or a tormented state of death.

Don't get me wrong, there are repercussions for sin and there is a need for repentance. Hell is not "the happiest place on Earth", or in heaven for that matter. God is righteous and just and He will deal with the unsaved, just not in hell. A good view of the torments of hell can be found in The Apocrypha in the Second Book of Esdras starting in verse76.


There is a lake of fire in the book of Revelation 20:10: "And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever." Don't let this verse confuse you into thinking God really does torment these individuals, or anyone else for that matter, forever in a fiery hell. A better description of this is in Revelation 14:11: "And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever:" It's the smoke from their extinguishing that rises for ever. The smoke is compared to a lamb on a spit in Psalm 37:20: "But the wicked shall be as the fat of lambs: They shall consume; into smoke shall they consume away."


We see the difference between the lake of fire and hell spelled out starting in Revelation chapter 20:

13. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.

14. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.

15. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.

Notice that if hell were the traditional burning dungeon of God, how could it be cast into a lake of fire? The lake of fire is a one-time situation that exists after the Millennium and should not be confused with hell in that the lake of fire exists for the sole purpose of the termination of all souls not passing judgment. Why would a loving God have His children burn forever in torment? He wouldn't.


So where is hell? If we refer to the scriptures we know that the soul leaves the body immediately after death and returns to God in Heaven to await the consummation of this age and then judgment. "Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God Who gave it" (Ecclesiastes 12:7). "We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord" (II Corinthians 5:8). Remember the story of Lazarus and the rich man in Luke 16:20? We are shown all the dead waiting in heaven with a gulf that divides them that have overcome in life from those that have not? "And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom" (Luke 16:23). The rich man asked for Lazarus to come to him but was told he couldn't because of the gulf . This is the true meaning and location of hell: dieing and waking up in heaven in anguish and torment from the realization that you blew it in the flesh.


Don't let anyone scare you with the threat of burning for ever in some kind of Dante's Inferno. God has better things to do with His children than that. Hell is simply the tormented state of death in heaven knowing you didn't overcome in the flesh. You're going to heaven one way or another when you die. What side of heaven you're on will be determined by your actions in the flesh. Get it right now so that you don't end up like the rich man in anguish knowing that you blew it when you had the chance.

Jerry Melisaratos
Author of Five W's of God - The who, what, where, when, and why of God and His plan for creation
www.fivewsofgod.com


message 2: by Katie (last edited May 02, 2009 11:31AM) (new)

Katie W I could see how you and many others would want to believe that hell doesn’t exist and that everyone goes to heaven and I think your heart is in the right place, but your desire to believe that has blinded you to the truth.

I agree that God is love and doesn’t want anyone to perish (“The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” 2 Peter 3:9). But God is also good and just and can have no part in evil (“God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.” 1 John 1:5). Our sin separates us from God who is holy and good. Yet even so, God continues to love us and does not want us to be separated from Him and knew that we couldn’t save ourselves.

That’s why Christ had to die for us to pay the death penalty for our sins—to do for us what we couldn’t and to give us the opportunity to return to God.

If we repent (turn from our sinful ways to follow God) by believing/accepting Christ’s sacrifice, God promises that our sins (past, present, and future) are washed clean; we’re made pure and righteous and holy. This is a gift because of God’s love for us. It’s by God’s grace and mercy (nothing of our own doing) that we have the opportunity to receive salvation and inherit eternal life in heaven with God who loves us and even now to have God’s Holy Spirit dwell in us. God loves us so deeply and wants to be with us and for us to be with Him! And that is clearly what God desires for all of us.

But if we refuse to accept Christ’s sacrifice and deliberately continue to sin and do evil, we already stand condemned and have missed our opportunity for salvation. The penalty/consequence for sin is death, eternal separation from God, and torment in hell. This makes God weep. But there’s nothing God can do if we refuse to accept grace and Christ’s sacrifice. God who is good and just can have no part in what is evil.

[This is all written in John 3: 3, 14-21:
In reply Jesus declared, “I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again. […] the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life. For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son. This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what he has done has been done through God."]

There are many passages that talk about heaven and hell including Luke 16:19-31 about Lazarus & the rich man that you mentioned. I disagree with your interpretation of that passage. The rich man didn’t feel remorse for his sinful actions on earth—he only felt remorse for the consequences of those actions—the torment he now suffers. He couldn’t cross over to where Lazarus and Abraham were and they couldn’t cross over to where he was so they are clearly in two different places. And also, there is no torment in heaven (“And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.” Revelation 21:4). So the rich man couldn’t possibly be in heaven. He is in an entirely different place (hell) a place of torment and punishment and suffering.

There are many other passages throughout the Bible that talk about heaven and hell—how those who are made righteous by faith (God’s grace and Christ’s sacrifice) will inherit salvation and eternal life but those who deliberately continue in sin and seeking only their own selfish desires will remain condemned and perish an eternal death and pay the just consequences and punishment for their sin.

Some of these include
Matthew 13: 24-30, 36-43 – The Parable of the Wheat and the Weeds
Matthew 13: 47-48 – The Parable of the Good and Bad Fish
Matthew 17:8-9 & Mark 9:47-48 – How sin leads to death and should be removed even at extreme costs
Matthew 23:33 – the Pharisees
Matthew 25:31-46 The final judgment)
“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the creation of the world.’ &
"Then he will say to those on his left, 'Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.”
Mark 16:15-16
“He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.”
Luke 19:41-44 “you did not accept your opportunity for salvation.”

And also throughout the Old Testament in the life stories and in the Psalms and Proverbs such as this
Psalm 37:17
“for the power of the wicked will be broken, but the LORD upholds the righteous.”

I can’t possibly list all of the references they are so numerous!

So basically, God is love and God is also just; those are both parts of his perfect character. Justly we all deserve death and punishment for our sins, which are evil. But God is also love and mercy. God wants to know us (to love us and have a relationship with us) and to help us and save us and doesn’t want us to face an eternal death and separation from Him; that’s why He sent Jesus to die for us to take the death penalty for our sins. But the choice is ours of whether to accept grace (Christ’s sacrifice) and repent and turn from following sin to following God or to continue deliberately in sin—the consequences of which are very clear and frequently warned about—eternal separation from God and torment in hell—a very real place. The good news is heaven is also a very real place and everyone has the opportunity to go there because of God's love and Christ's sacrifice. Where we go depends on whether we choose to accept that gift of God’s grace.



message 3: by Katie (last edited May 02, 2009 12:57PM) (new)

Katie W I wanted to add that the subject of heaven and hell relates closely to my own personal testimony. When I was around five or six years old, I was riding in the backseat as my parents drove home from my grandparents’ house. During that drive a bad thunderstorm came up and as a child I was gripped by fear. I wondered if I could possibly die in that storm. And if I died, I knew that I would go to hell.

Even then, at that young age, I knew that I had sinned (that I had done things that were evil and wrong) and that I deserved to go to hell (to face punishment for what I had done). I couldn't save myself, and I wanted to be assured I was going to heaven so that very day I accepted Jesus as my savior.

At the time, my decision was motivated solely by fear and guilt and a desire to be assured of going to heaven, and my life didn’t change much as a result of my decision.

As I got older, around the time I was in middle school, I noticed that the youth pastor at my church and his wife were filled with incredible joy and I wanted what they had. From observing them I realized it wasn't about fear. God doesn't want us to go to hell, to be separated from Him. God loves us, wants to be with us and to have a relationship with us, and that's why He sent Jesus.

As I realized that, I began to spend time with God and started to know God personally not just as my savior from hell but as my lover and friend. I began a personal relationship with God and began to fully experience God’s love—and that changes everything! It has completely and totally changed my life for the better. And since then my relationship with God has continued to grow and it means everything to me.



message 4: by Jerry (last edited May 03, 2009 04:14AM) (new)

Jerry Melisaratos | 31 comments Dear Katie,
Great work. I agree with you on almost everything you said. There are repercussions for sin and that hell does exist, just not in the traditional sense. I didn't mean for it to sound like everyone goes to heaven and it's all good. I do belive it states the rich man was in heaven though, seperated by a gulf that neither the rich man nor Lazarus could cross. So you are right, they are in two different places but both those places are in heaven. Those that overcame were on one side and those that didn't were on te other side. Your reference to Revelation 21:4 takes place after judgment, death being sent to the lake of fire, and upon entering the eternity. This is why it states that there is no crying or pain and the former things are passed away. Thank you so much for the post, it was a great read. God bless.


message 5: by Katie (new)

Katie W Hello Jerry,

Thanks for your comments. I meant to write back sooner but got busy. To me, reading the passage about the rich man and Lazarus, I'm not convinced that the rich man was in heaven. It seems more reasonable to me that he was in hell because he was suffering in fire and torment. It was a place he wanted to leave but couldn't. Since he couldn't leave he at least wanted to go back and warn his brothers so they could avoid his fate. I think that parable is meant as a warning to people to repent and turn to God because God doesn't want anyone to perish in hell.

I don't believe there will be separate parts of heaven but that everyone who chooses to accept Christ's sacrifice and turn from sin and pursue God will go to the same place to be with God and dwell in God's presence. Those who refuse to acknowledge their need for God and refuse to turn from their rebellion and sin and pursuit of self have missed their opportunity for salvation and will face punishment in hell. I think the warnings about this are clear as are the messages about the good news of salvation that is available to all, the rewards of repenting and turning back to God, accepting the free gift of grace, and choosing to obey and follow God. Thanks again for your comments and for seeking after the truth. God bless.


message 6: by Jerry (new)

Jerry Melisaratos | 31 comments Katie wrote: "Hello Jerry,

Thanks for your comments. I meant to write back sooner but got busy. To me, reading the passage about the rich man and Lazarus, I'm not convinced that the rich man was in heaven. It s..."

Hi Katie,

You are right. There won't be separate parts in heaven after judgment but I think if you read Luke 16 again you'll see that the rich man is in hell but he can see Lazarus and Abraham on the other side of the gulf in heaven. The rich man even spoke to Abraham. This gulf separates the over comers from those who have not overcome. Remember the Bible states that to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord. I don't know if you have ever read the Apocrypha, but in II Esdras starting in verse 76, it gives a good view of what hell consists of in heaven. You're also right about this being a warning to repent. Thanks for responding and may God bless you.



message 7: by Amber (new)

Amber (amberbounds) | 1 comments I can't believe that Heaven could hold any place where there will be any type of sorrow or seperation from God. How, then could it be heaven? Referring to the final judgment John wrote, "And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.” (Revelation 20:14)Hell was cast into the lake of fire. So, while hell may not be a fiery place, doesn't this suggest that after the judgement it will become one? And if hell is eternal separation from God then doesn't that mean it and it's occupants will burn for eternity. God is pure and holy and cannot be in the presence of anything that is not pure and holy. That's why in the old testament the animals that were offered up to Him had to be without spot or blemish. Not because God was being picky, but because being a Holy God, he COULDN'T accept anything less than perfect. That's why we needed Jesus to come and be our perfect sacrifice, because without the covering of His blood upon our acceptance of Him as Savior we could never enter into Heaven and fellowship with the Father.
I would love to believe the theory of no hell, but I just can't believe that knowing how Holy God is.


message 8: by Jerry (last edited May 14, 2009 12:33AM) (new)

Jerry Melisaratos | 31 comments Amber wrote: "I can't believe that Heaven could hold any place where there will be any type of sorrow or seperation from God. How, then could it be heaven? Referring to the final judgment John wrote, "And death ..."

First let me say it's great to meet people who study God's word. I never said there is no hell, there is. I just think the scriptures paint a different hell than the one we are used to hearing about. I don't know how far along you are in God's word but let me throw some things at you to mull over.
First there are three Heaven and Earth ages. The first age was when Satan rebelled against God and a third of God's children followed. It ended with what's called the "foundations" of the Earth in the New Testament. When you see the word "foundation" it is the Greek word "katabole" and it means "to cast down, disruption, or ruin". The second Heaven and Earth age begins in Genesis 1:3 which is the one we're in now. The third one starts after judgment as we see in Revelation 21:1; "And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away;" The word "first" here means former. So we have three different fazes of
Heaven and Earth.
You're right in that heaven shouldn't hold a place of sorrow, and it won't in the third age as we see in Revelation 21:4, but in the second Heaven and Earth age we know that the soul returns to God at death as we see in Ecclesiastes 12:7,II Corinthians 5:6-10, and in Acts 24:15 we read that both just and unjust return to God.If you read Luke 16:22 again you'll see just that. Lazarus goes to Heaven and is with Abraham but the rich man that did not overcome is there also in torment. He can see Lazarus and Abraham and can even talk to them but can't cross the gulf that seperates them. The rich man is in hell as are all awaiting judgment seperated from those that overcame.
At judgment, the lake of fire is the tool God uses to extinguish the souls. Hebrews 12:29 says that God is a "consuming" fire and that's exactly what He does. We see how that works in Ezekiel 28:18&19 with Satan. He's consumed from the inside out and no longer exists. We see it comes from the lake of fire in Revelation 20:10 and I know it says they are tormented day and night for ever but in Revelation 14:11 it is the smoke of their torment is what rises forever. This is confirmed in Psalm 37:20 where it also states they "perish".
Imagine someone who passes judgment and has eternal life. How good would it be if old uncle Joe, or anyone else in the family, is burning somewhere day and night for ever. Isn't that sorrow as opposed to Revelation 21:4? We know God loved us so much He gave His only Son. Wouldn't it make more sense if He just extinguished the soul and took that energy back rather than have one of His children in torment for ever. That doesn't sound like a loving God to me. Most of the scriptures we read of hell are idioms or figures of speech. We know the Bible can't contradict itself and we just read scriptures saying that Satan is consumed as are those in Revelation 20:9. You're right, God is pure and holy and there would be no reason to have a burning hell in His presence for ever.
I cover this in much more depth in my 460 page book along with all three Heaven and Earth ages. You can pick up a used one on Amazon.com for under $2.
I hope this helps a little bit or clears up what I meant to convey. Again, God bless you for taking the time to read God's word. I hope we talk again soon.



message 9: by Lynai (new)

Lynai I really don't care knowing or discussing where hell is and what it looks like. It's enough for me that hell is real as what the Scriptures say and it's a place I wouldn't want to be whether now or in the future nor would I want to live in eternity there forever.

Knowing that hell is real is enough for me to appreciate my salvation more, thank God for His gift of grace, and share the good news of salvation to others.


message 10: by Syedm (new)

Syedm | 3 comments Lynai: Yes i do believe that Hell is Real, As scripture says that not only that but there is many scientific signs that shows that scriputres are TRUE
if you have a time please read atleast once

THE QUR'AN AND THE MODERN SCIENCE COMPATIBLE OR INCOMPATIBLE

http://www.irf.net/book3.zip




message 11: by Tiffany (new)

Tiffany (mtiff) Well katie, I am convinced. Sorry Jerry but I am not convinced as you used other books contrary to the words of Jesus to back up your argument.


message 12: by Skylar (new)

Skylar Burris (skylarburris) A good book on this topic is Surprised by Hope.


message 13: by Lyn (new)

Lyn (lyncote) Surprised by Joy by CS Lewis, his autobiography is good for any subject.



message 14: by Sharon (last edited Jun 03, 2009 04:22PM) (new)

Sharon Ellis | 39 comments The place known as "Hell" is a cruel place that is seriously away from the Good place of God. Its inhabitants are all of the souls who did not wish to be with God, and so they know they are not and never will be. - so deep a question. More thinking and seeking the answers to the mysteries needed.


message 15: by Tiffany (new)

Tiffany (mtiff) Sharon wrote: "The place known as "Hell" is a cruel place that is seriously away from the Good place of God. Its inhabitants are all of the souls who did not wish to be with God, and so they know they are not and..."
good answer!



message 16: by LadyCalico (last edited Jun 08, 2009 01:20PM) (new)

LadyCalico I've got to agree with Sharon--your conception of hell is totally consistent with mine. I spent most of my life as a nominal Christian in a liberal mainstream church, until we were blessed by a fervid and scriptural pastor who made me realize that God is not an afterthought. Since God took center stage in my life in my early 50's, I look upon my former life as waste, hopelessness, and misery--I just didn't know any better. The only thing about it that was not a waste was that my life experiences were preparing me to meet Christ in my old age and to have a heart for the unsaved to motivate my ministry. Now that I enjoy a real relationship with my Savior, I see a life without Him and without the opportunity for service in His name as a true hell. No there is no place in Heaven for the wretched creature I used to be or it would not be a Heaven. The main difference in my old life and hell is that a sinner still alive in the flesh always has the Blessed Hope of forgiveness and salvation available for the asking--hell does not. I think God wants us to know there is a Satan and know there is a hell, but doesn't want to give us much detail and doesn't want our thoughts dwelling upon them. I think He purposely kept the information on hell sketchy and symbolic, because our eyes, minds, and hearts, should be focused on Christ and Heaven...think on these things.


message 17: by Jerry (new)

Jerry Melisaratos | 31 comments Lola4 wrote: "I've got to agree with Sharon--your conception of hell is totally consistent with mine. I spent most of my life as a nominal Christian in a liberal mainstream church, until we were blessed by a fe..."
Your focus is absolutely right.




message 18: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Ellis | 39 comments Hi from Sharon,
You see, I had an angel of the Lord appear to me, and from then on, Jesus made it His good pleasure to begin the joyful experience in me of growing to know Him personally - what a magnificent treat to have His Love persue me. Isn't it the most Amazing Grace that He persues each one of us individually and personally! :)
Sharon


message 19: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Ellis | 39 comments Hi all, If you will please click onto my photo, I have updated my page with some of my testimony about the miraculous experiences I had.
The sharing of our testimony is for the building up of our faith.
Peace, Sharon


message 20: by Moody (new)

Moody Claire (singurl) | 17 comments Well, I must say... I'm very impressed and very glad that all of you are talking about God and His words.

In my opinion, it doesn't matter what hell is. What it looks like or where it is. The mere fact that God won't be with us is my very description of hell itself.

The important thing, at least for me, is that we live with and by His love and care through others and through His words.

God Bless us all!


message 21: by Jerry (new)

Jerry Melisaratos | 31 comments SiNgUrL wrote: "Well, I must say... I'm very impressed and very glad that all of you are talking about God and His words.

In my opinion, it doesn't matter what hell is. What it looks like or where it is. The me..."

Well said




message 22: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Ellis | 39 comments Thank you Tiffany


message 23: by Pau (new)

Pau | 21 comments Heaven and hell, they were delicate things to tackle. It doesn't matter where were these places, what matters most is that on the Big Picture, focus on the relationship with God before focusing to those places. There would be a righteous time for these places to open and witness them.


message 24: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Ellis | 39 comments I think many here would delight in the things God has done in my life and the lives of others He has allowed me to see and be part of. I begin my book at the part where God allowed His Angel to appear to me - and the miraculous takes off from there and just keeps on going! Please click on my photo - take a look at my Christian Inspirational True Story -
Communions With Christ
Amazon.com
Faith is built by the sharing of our testimonies - God is amazing.


message 25: by Jay (last edited Sep 09, 2009 12:18PM) (new)

Jay Franklin (jayd808) | 8 comments Jerry wrote: " When most people think of hell, they think of Satan in that red suit with two horns and a pitchfork somewhere in the depths of the Earth where souls are tormented day and night on some kind of..."

"The biblical materials for a concept of God do not organize themselves. They do not automatically arrange themselves into a satisfactory form. They achieve that form only when the human mind, seeking to understand its own faith, begins to work on them and to set them out in more intelligible ways.

To organize the biblical materials, we soon find that we need to draw on such philosophical categories as good and evil, freedom and necessity, person and nature, mind and will, essence and existence, being and knowing.

Of course, the application of these notions to God is an attempt to speak of what lies beyond the world within terms drawn from this world, and so is only justified if we always add a postscript to that effect."
Fr. Aidan Nichols

I think heaven and hell fall into that too. Rather than quibble over Biblical interpretations (Does the parable of Lazarus at the gate mean there is one side of Heaven called hell and another where the occupants of each can view each other? I’d rather not answer) – I’d rather take some rich, well thought out poems or narratives where someone has constructed a vision based on scripture and we can think about it.

Take Dante’s Divine Comedy or Milton’s Paradise Lost for example. Look what this becomes in the hands of an imaginative Biblical scholar who also happened to translate it (Anthony Esolen):

http://payingattentiontothesky.com/20...

These images grab you and stay with you. And the lessons drawn are profound in their Christian nature. BTW No fire at the center of Dante's hell but ice. Why that image? Read the above...

In Christ,

dj









message 26: by Jerry (new)

Jerry Melisaratos | 31 comments Thanks for your thoughts Derek. It's not so much about quibbling as it is a desire to read and learn every inch of the Bible. This was never meant to take your mind off the big picture but merely a comment on what I believe to be a big misconception of what and where hell is. Peace.


message 27: by Mickey (last edited Sep 20, 2009 09:52AM) (new)

Mickey Mullen (mrmullenvcncom) | 632 comments Does it matter where hell is? God told Adam, "thou shalt surely die if you eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil." Does it matter what the tree was? Adam disobeyed God. The religious community is disobeying God along with the sinners. The problem with mankind is, they think they are alive but they are dead. You have to be quicken in his righteousness before you are made alive. It wasn't until I was 31 years of age before I longed after the things of God. Psalm 119;40 Behold I have longed after thy precepts: (laws) quicken me (make me alive) in thy righteousness. Once upon a time I was dead but on 12/1/1968 at 9 PM I was made alive.


message 28: by Jerry (new)

Jerry Melisaratos | 31 comments You're right Mickey, in the greater scheme of things it doesn't matter where hell is. This was just an article to clarify what I think are misconceptions about hell. I question your comment though that "the religious community is disobeying God." Which religious community? Do you know them all to be able to pass judgment? Is all mankind dead except you? Maybe you should know the person before you proclaim them dead. I'm sure you mean well but this is a pretty broad and judgmental statement to make but I'm glad that your alive.Peace.


message 29: by Mickey (new)

Mickey Mullen (mrmullenvcncom) | 632 comments When Jesus was on the earth and spoke the Word that the Father had gave Him to say, wasn't he being judgmental? Lets say Noah (according to most preachers) preached for 100 years while he was building the ark, wasn't he being judgmental. I have heard we are not to judge St Matthew 7;1 What about 5 Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye. 13;16 But blessed are your eyes, for they see: and your ears for they hear. The beam (as Jesus put it ) has been removed where I can make such a statment. If you send me the address of the true church I would travel to the ends of the earth to be a member.


message 30: by Jerry (new)

Jerry Melisaratos | 31 comments Jesus can be judgmental because He is God, you're not. Just because Noah, or anybody else for that matter, preached doesn't mean he judged. There is a big difference. I'm glad the beam has been removed from your eye but I don't think that means you can judge people you don't even know. You're not the first or the only one to be saved. As for the address of the true church, find one in your area that teaches the scriptures chapter by chapter and verse by verse and I think you'll be fine. Peace.


message 31: by Mickey (new)

Mickey Mullen (mrmullenvcncom) | 632 comments St Matthew 20;23 Ye shall drink indeed of my cup, and be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with: 3;16 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straighway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God (Holy Ghost) descending like a dove, (Holy Ghost) and lighting upon him: It never lighting upon Him but it went in His mouth and down His throat. How could I know this if it never happened to me and there was no water involved with me.

St John 16;7 Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter (Holy Ghost) will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.

You still haven't answeared my question which church teaches the scripture chapter by chapter and verse by verse? I went to a church for 13 years that would die for the verse The Acts 2;38 and they only taught a watered down version of the Bible in Sunday School. Peter in the Gospels never showed me he understood Jesus at all.


message 32: by Jerry (new)

Jerry Melisaratos | 31 comments Shepherd's Chapel in Gravette, Arkansas is one church which you can attend in person or watch on any form of t.v. It will cover the Bible chapter by chapter and verse by verse by a man who has taught for over 50 years and is a well known linguist well versed in Biblical languages and the Massorah. God bless and good luck.


message 33: by Mickey (new)

Mickey Mullen (mrmullenvcncom) | 632 comments The earth is full of them Mr Magee goes thru the Bible in five years. Those people have an explanation for each verse. How could Satan deceive all the nations with out his part in the Bible? Which Bible does He use? Mr Magee said, St John 3;5, because it mentions water, it means the washing of the Word. How shallow is that. One preacher said he almost went into a Bar one time.

Most preachers have there Aunt pay their way thru Bible College, then they get a big church with a lot of money coming in. I was a drunk, smoking, swearing, and sex maniac. Which one of us did Jesus come to save? I was thirty one years of age before I even thought about the things of God. What does the Bible say about that.
St Matthew 6;33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousnesss: and all these things shall be added unto you. St John 5;42 But I know you, that ye have not the LOVE OF GOD IN YOU. (in you) Yes it is put in you, it is physical like rain, snow, tornadios, huricanes, air, sun, moon, jupitor, the ground, trees. Etc..


message 34: by Jay (new)

Jay Franklin (jayd808) | 8 comments Your discussion here forced me into a search. I came across a wonderful article by the late Avery Cardinal Dulles which he wrote in First Things back in 2003. There were references to some controversies at the time which I have removed as they seemed too topical for my wants, but I’ve kept the overall survey aspect of the Church’s teachings on hell – it is an invaluable resource and timeless overview of the topic. Whether it be commenting on the New Testament or Paul or dealing with contemporary theologians (von Balthasar, Rahner) writings on the topic, Cardinal Dulles presents his materials and interpretations with consummate skill. Reading selections here:

http://payingattentiontothesky.com/20...

if you would like to follow up.

dj


message 35: by Jerry (new)

Jerry Melisaratos | 31 comments Thank you Derek. I will check it out.


message 36: by Jerry (new)

Jerry Melisaratos | 31 comments I just read the article and find no contradiction in it to my article. Hell is a bad place where the dead go to await judgment. It is not eternal nor is it to be confused with the lake of fire which this article seems to do a couple of times. In the book of Revelation, hell is cast into the lake of fire and no longer exists. The story of Lazarus, I feel, is still the best depiction of hell in the New Testament. It was a great read though and thanks for sharing Derek.


message 37: by Shalonda (last edited Feb 10, 2010 08:24PM) (new)

Shalonda Williams-Lynard (shalondatreasurewilliams) | 15 comments From my study, Hell is the grave. When Satan got kicked out, it was to the earth, so he is not below the earth. There is no below the earth (except in outer space), there is the middle of the earth which is the earth's core (hey that's hot). Honestly I think that it shouldn't matter. I know that I believe a lot of things different from other seekers, but I believe that as spirits, our after life (earthly life) experience isn't going to be physical like we believe it is. There will be no flesh to torture. I think that this is the reason that Christ even clarified where heaven was, so that we would throw away these old notions. These are just my thoughts. Peace


message 38: by Jerry (new)

Jerry Melisaratos | 31 comments Shalonda wrote: "From my study, Hell is the grave. When Satan got kicked out, it was to the earth, so he is not below the earth. There is no below the earth (except in outer space), there is the middle of the earth..."

Beautifully said Shalonda. Peace to you also.




message 39: by Mickey (new)

Mickey Mullen (mrmullenvcncom) | 632 comments Shalonda wrote: "From my study, Hell is the grave. When Satan got kicked out, it was to the earth, so he is not below the earth. There is no below the earth (except in outer space), there is the middle of the earth..." Satan was kicked out of heaven to the earth, so he was doomed. He wants to take as many people with him so he is the destroyer of people. You would have to show me where it says Christ clarified where heaven is? I believe there is a heaven to gain and a hell to shun.




message 40: by Shalonda (new)

Shalonda Williams-Lynard (shalondatreasurewilliams) | 15 comments Mickey wrote: "Shalonda wrote: "From my study, Hell is the grave. When Satan got kicked out, it was to the earth, so he is not below the earth. There is no below the earth (except in outer space), there is the mi..."

The kingdom of heaven, the kingdom of God are all used interchangeably as far as my understanding goes. Jesus said that the kingdom of God is within you. That it is not something that you will be able to say look here and look there. "I believe there is a heaven to gain and a hell to shun." Can you explain that to me please, Mickey. It may not be far off from what I believe. But, we'll see :-)



message 41: by Jerry (last edited Feb 12, 2010 02:12AM) (new)

Jerry Melisaratos | 31 comments Mickey wrote: "Shalonda wrote: "From my study, Hell is the grave. When Satan got kicked out, it was to the earth, so he is not below the earth. There is no below the earth (except in outer space), there is the mi..."

Mickey, even though Satan was on the Earth at one time, he is not now. He was dispatched behind Jesus in Matthew 4:10 and Luke 4:8 and is in Heaven until being cast out by Michael in Revelation 12:9 which is still future.

As for Heaven, would you not say that where God is, there is Heaven. Does not the Bible say that to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord, meaning when you die? Would you not say that Abraham, who Lazarus saw at his death, is in Heaven? You are right in that there is a Heaven to gain and a hell to shun.


message 42: by Jerry (new)

Jerry Melisaratos | 31 comments Shalonda wrote: "Mickey wrote: "Shalonda wrote: "From my study, Hell is the grave. When Satan got kicked out, it was to the earth, so he is not below the earth. There is no below the earth (except in outer space), ..."

Shalonda, I don't believe that the kingdom of Heaven and the kingdom of God are interchangeable or even the same thing. I believe the kingdom of Heaven is where God is, a specific location, where as His Kingdom is His whole domain including Earth and all that is created.


message 43: by Mickey (new)

Mickey Mullen (mrmullenvcncom) | 632 comments In St John 3:5 it says that a person will enter into the kingdom of God after there saved. They are still on the earth but are still part of the kingdom of God. I wouldn't bet that God wants any part of the earth. It greived Him at His heart that He had made man Genesis 6:6.


message 44: by Mickey (new)

Mickey Mullen (mrmullenvcncom) | 632 comments Jerry wrote: "Mickey wrote: "Shalonda wrote: "From my study, Hell is the grave. When Satan got kicked out, it was to the earth, so he is not below the earth. There is no below the earth (except in outer space), ..." In St Matthew 4:10 Jesus was being tested to see if He would follow God Or Satan. Satan had offered Jesus all the kingdoms of the world but he refused. Jesus told Satan to get away from him, He never ment from the earth. Where do you think all the sin on the earth comes from? It comes from Satan, he wants as many with him as possible, and is doing a real good job of it. So in regard to the other reply Satan has all the kingdoms of the world and not God.

Shalonda wrote: "Mickey wrote: "Shalonda wrote: "From my study, Hell is the grave. When Satan got kicked out, it was to the earth, so he is not below the earth. There is no below the earth (except in outer space), ..." Don't you believe some are going to be saved and some that are not. That is what I ment about, "a Heven to gain and a hell to shun"




message 45: by Shalonda (new)

Shalonda Williams-Lynard (shalondatreasurewilliams) | 15 comments To be absent from the body is to be back to your natural state which is spirit. God is not separate from anything in His creation. I do not believe that God is far off from us. I know that He is in all things. I won't say that my understanding, neither either of yours is wrong. This is all according to your faith. It is my thoughts that everything depicted in the scriptures was told from a natural standpoint because that is what we know. The spiritual things are the things that Jesus spoke in parables about and he knew that not everyone would understand if he spoke it plainly.

Honestly, who here believes that God did not know what He created when creating us and this world? He did and He uses each thing or spirit as He wills. Even Satan is under subjection to God. That's why I can't be concerned about him. Think about this, what was God's purpose of sending him to Job? He has a job, but he has to yet answer to God. Not later but now.

I have learned that I was giving too much credit and thought to what satan was doing. I have to ask God what is the purpose of everything in my life. Yes even the "bad" things. Why? Because there is a lesson to be learned and glory and praise to be given to God for showing me that it is only temporary. I do believe that there is a translation, though I can't remember which it is that uses the words interchangeably and I am convinced that Jesus wanted us to stop looking around for what is already apart of us.


message 46: by Jerry (new)

Jerry Melisaratos | 31 comments Mickey wrote: "Jerry wrote: "Mickey wrote: "Shalonda wrote: "From my study, Hell is the grave. When Satan got kicked out, it was to the earth, so he is not below the earth. There is no below the earth (except in ..."

All the sin of the world comes from man's fallen nature acquired in the Garden of Eden and from Satan's spirit and influence. Again, the passage in Revelation 12:7-9 is in the future where Satan and his angels are at war with Michael and his angels and then they are cast down to earth from Heaven, "neither was their place found anymore in heaven." verse 8. Jesus did say "Get behind Me, Satan!" in Like 4:8 and Jesus is now in Heaven at the right hand of God so I believe he is being held by Michael until the end.
I don't believe Satan will return to earth until the Tribulation as the anti-christ.

Shalonda, well said. Peace to you both.


message 47: by Mickey (new)

Mickey Mullen (mrmullenvcncom) | 632 comments Jerry wrote: "Mickey wrote: "Jerry wrote: "Mickey wrote: "Shalonda wrote: "From my study, Hell is the grave. When Satan got kicked out, it was to the earth, so he is not below the earth. There is no below the ea..." (Cast down to earth from heaven?) Satan has already been cast out of heaven, in Isaiah 14:12 How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! 13 ---I will sit also upon the mount (all) of the congregations, (Churches and Religions) (He is being held by Michael until the end?) What kind of thinking is that? If Satan is not on the earth, who can we blame for causing all the trouble on the earth? St Luke 23:46 ---Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit: And having said thus, he gave up the ghost. His spirit left before His physical body. I'm not sure how Michael got into the conversation?


message 48: by Mickey (new)

Mickey Mullen (mrmullenvcncom) | 632 comments Jerry wrote: "Mickey wrote: "Jerry wrote: "Mickey wrote: "Shalonda wrote: "From my study, Hell is the grave. When Satan got kicked out, it was to the earth, so he is not below the earth. There is no below the ea..." Jesus spoke in parables to hide the truth, it is the parables that the preachers don't understand, that is why there are thousands of churches.




message 49: by Shalonda (new)

Shalonda Williams-Lynard (shalondatreasurewilliams) | 15 comments Mickey wrote: "Jerry wrote: "Mickey wrote: "Jerry wrote: "Mickey wrote: "Shalonda wrote: "From my study, Hell is the grave. When Satan got kicked out, it was to the earth, so he is not below the earth. There is n..."

And this I believe to be somewhat true Mickey. You have to remember, however that Jesus was not about staying in one spot anyway. He spoke in temples because there were people there that needed to hear him. In those temples he read from scrolls. But, Jesus ventured so far. He also spoke on mountains and in towns and in these places it doesn't speak(that I remember) of him reading from scrolls. He did that for those that read from scrolls and for those that didn't he spoke to them where there were. It's funny how we often get extra deep about certain things but when you get the real message of Christ it is that love, faith and Our Creator are the first and foremost things to be concerned about. Oh and not being a hypocrite. He spoke a lot about that to the Pharisees and teachers of religious law.

What do you think the foremost message of Jesus was?


message 50: by Jerry (new)

Jerry Melisaratos | 31 comments Shalonda wrote: "Mickey wrote: "Jerry wrote: "Mickey wrote: "Jerry wrote: "Mickey wrote: "Shalonda wrote: "From my study, Hell is the grave. When Satan got kicked out, it was to the earth, so he is not below the ea..."
I believe the foremost message of Jesus Shalonda was love your neighbor as yourself.

I agree with you Mickey on message 48. As for message 47, Michael got in this because I believe it is Michael who holds Satan ( which I believe II Thessalonians 2:7 is referring to)until casting him out of Heaven in Revelation 12:7 which I believe to be future tense. Indeed Satan has been on the earth and will be again but I believe just as Jesus left the Earth so has Satan until he is cast out at the appointed time to fulfill the role of anti-christ. This doesn't mean that all the bad and sin in the world left with Satan. There are still demons, Satan's spirit, and the fallen nature of man to fill in the gaps. Just my belief. Peace



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