Heaven and Hell: September 28, 2005, class #3

Heaven and Hell: September 28, 2005, class #3

Sorry it took so long to get these notes and ideas posted from last week’s class—it’s been a very busy week at work, and I haven’t had the time at home to get as much done as I’d hoped. So, unfortunately, this is a bit raw. But, fortunately, I have the audio done, and I have a couple other articles on this topic I can add in subsequent posts as well.

Without futher ado, here’s the audio file, it’s about an hour and twenty minutes long, and it includes some after-class discussion for a few die-hards who hung around to grill the unfortunate teacher. The audio is kinda poor, but it comes with the use-what-you-got technology category. If you can’t listen via the player below, here’s a link to the file.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

The main topic today was whether or not Christ spent any time in Hell. I argue against that proposition, even though Augustin, Calvin, and the Early Church’s Apostle’s Creed vote for Christ’s descent. Below are the passages I referenced in class.

Matthew 27:50-53
And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit.

At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth shook and the rocks split. The tombs broke open and the bodies of many holy people who had died were raised to life. They came out of the tombs, and after Jesus’ resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many people.

Before diving into our main topic, I addressed the question from last week about the meaning and nature of the saints who were resurrected at Christ’s death, in the passage shown above. I didn’t really have much to say about this, other than that we believe it happened, but there is no other biblical data providing any mention or commentary about this event. What I conclude is that Christ’s death on the Cross, completed the work of salvation, and that the immediate resurrection of many saints in Jerusalem is primarily a demonstration of his power over life and death. This plays into my argument that Christ’s work on the Christ was complete. He cried out “it is finished!” (John 19:30) And upon his death, proof that it was finished came in the appearance of many who were previously dead. The events that Matthew describes here all point to the significance and the impact of Christ’s death. They are markers for the eternal and universal impact his sacrifice had on all of creation. Creation responded, the dead responded, and even the spiritual world was changed, signified by the tearing of the veil from top to bottom.

Next, we look at an Old Testament Psalm by Kind David:

Psalm 16:10-11
“because you will not abandon me to the grave, [a] nor will you let your Holy One see decay. You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.”

[a] Hebrew: Sheol (See definition below)

This Psalm was referenced by Peter as being a prophecy of Christ, which we’ll see in a moment. But first, notice that the Psalmist uses “Sheol” as the location of the Holy One. In Old Testament theology, the destination for everyone at death was Sheol. Both the righteous and the unrighteous went there. In many ways, Sheol is identified with “The Pit” and “the grave,” but it’s a mistake to make it a synonym for the physical resting place. It is basically “the underworld.”

However, the Septuagint, the Greek translation of the Old Testament, invariably used the word “hades” to translate “Sheol.” Now, Hades is the New Testament equivalent of the underworld, as a destination for unbelievers and believers, alike, but it has more hellish connotations that heavenly ones. Unfortunately, early English translations always translated the Greek “Hades” as “Hell”, and so the confusion begins.

Now, when Peter quotes this passage, keep in mind that the current Greek versions of the OT, which Peter was probably familiar with, translated “Sheol” as “Hades,” and to the NT believer, Hades was a common destination for everybody who died. So, Peter, quoting the Psalm, uses “Hades” when saying “you will not abandon me to the grave.” Again, many early English Bibles translated this as “Hell,” so, we get the beginning of a theology that says Christ went to Hell, where he was not abandoned.

As you can see, below, the modern NIV simply, and correctly, translates Hades as “the grave” here.

Acts 2:25-35
David said about him:

   ” ‘I saw the Lord always before me.
      Because he is at my right hand,
      I will not be shaken.
    Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices;
      my body also will live in hope,
    because you will not abandon me to the grave,
      nor will you let your Holy One see decay.
    You have made known to me the paths of life;
      you will fill me with joy in your presence.’

“Brothers, I can tell you confidently that the patriarch David died and was buried, and his tomb is here to this day. But he was a prophet and knew that God had promised him on oath that he would place one of his descendants on his throne. Seeing what was ahead, he spoke of the resurrection of the Christ, that he was not abandoned to the grave, nor did his body see decay. God has raised this Jesus to life, and we are all witnesses of the fact. Exalted to the right hand of God, he has received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit and has poured out what you now see and hear. For David did not ascend to heaven, and yet he said,

   ” ‘The Lord said to my Lord:
      “Sit at my right hand
    until I make your enemies
      a footstool for your feet.” ‘

Note, also, that Peter’s extended commentary on this passage and on Christ, drives the point home that Christ was in the grave, and he was not abandoned there. Notice, he says nothing in this passage about Christ going to Hell as we know it.

Luke 23:39-46
One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: “Aren’t you the Christ? Save yourself and us!”

    But the other criminal rebuked him. “Don’t you fear God,” he said, “since you are under the same sentence? We are punished justly, for we are getting what our deeds deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong.”

    Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom. “

    Jesus answered him, “I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise.”

    It was now about the sixth hour, and darkness came over the whole land until the ninth hour, for the sun stopped shining. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.” When he had said this, he breathed his last.

Greek word used here: paradisos/paradeis

Notice in this passage that Christ tells the criminal that today you will be with me in paradise. This is a statement of immediate impact. There’s no delay allowing for Jesus to take a quick Hellish detour to tussle with Satan over the keys of death.

Ephesians 4:7-13
But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it. This is why it says:

   “When he ascended on high,
      he led captives in his train
      and gave gifts to men.”

(What does “he ascended” mean except that he also descended to the lower, earthly regions? He who descended is the very one who ascended higher than all the heavens, in order to fill the whole universe.) It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.

The Ephesians passage is also used to bolster the Hell trip because the text says Christ descended to the “lower, earthly regions.” The assumption is that from the point of view of Paul, Christ descended even lower than the Earth into Hell. But a clear reading of the text denies this. The descent referred to here is a parallel to the ascent Christ ultimately made: to Heaven. Where did Christ descend to? To earth, of course! He came down from Heaven to Earth to die for our sins. Elsewhere, in Philippians 2, Paul talks about how Christ made himself of no repute so that he could become like a man. This is the main meaning of descent here: Christ condescended and made himself as low as any man.

Of course, he did descend even deeper, and that was into the grave. This passage is not a legitimate foundation for “Road Trip to Hell” theology.

1 Peter 1:10-12
Concerning this salvation, the prophets, who spoke of the grace that was to come to you, searched intently and with the greatest care, trying to find out the time and circumstances to which the Spirit of Christ in them was pointing when he predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow. It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but you, when they spoke of the things that have now been told you by those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven. Even angels long to look into these things.

1 Peter 3:18-22
For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive by the Spirit, through whom also he went and preached to the spirits in prison who disobeyed long ago when God waited patiently in the days of Noah while the ark was being built. In it only a few people, eight in all, were saved through water, and this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also-not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a good conscience toward God. It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ, who has gone into heaven and is at God’s right hand-with angels, authorities and powers in submission to him.

I chose these two passages from Peter to show together because the first passage supplies a phrase that helps makes Peter’s meaning even clearer. This is the primary passage (from chapter 3) used to prove that Christ descended to Hell, because it says he preached to the captives in prison (to either the unrighteous in Hell, or possibly the righteous in the “waiting room” area of Hades.)

But Peter is not saying that Christ actively preached to people actually in Hell. He’s saying that Christ preached through Noah to the people who—even now—are languishing imprisoned in Hell. Notice how in chapter one Peter says that it was actually Christ, speaking through the prophets, that predicted his sufferings and glory. In the same way that Peter says Jesus spoke through the prophets he also spoke through Noah to his generation.

John 1:1
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Note: Jesus is the eternal Word (John 1:1), and Noah was a preacher of righteousness (2 Peter 2:5), therefore Jesus was ultimately preaching through Noah.

Revelation 1:18
I am the Living One; I was dead, and behold I am alive for ever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and Hades.

This is the primary passage that has been added to the general misunderstanding, implying that he keys Christ holds are the same keys he took from Satan. Unfortunately, there’s simply no evidence anywhere that Christ had to wrestle anybody for anything.

Keys represent glory, honor, power, and control. Whoever holds the key to your house, has free access to it. Possession of the key is tantamount to owning the right to access and make use of a thing. It’s true with your car, your house, your apartment, your place of work, and even to the city of Chicago, assuming mayor Daley has given you the “keys to the city.” Considering that Christ said this:

John 14:6
Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

The we can assume (safely, I think) that Christ, being the way the truth and the life always held the power to life and death. A fellow class member reminded me of Christ’s saying that “I am the resurrection.” Again, evidence that Christ never lost the power over life and death at all.

John 11:25-26
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; 26and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?”

Going on to buttress my claim that the work of Christ on the cross was complete and finished upon his death, I present the following passages.

The blood of Christ saves us from sin, his death on the cross as payment, not some trip to Hell:

1 John 1:7-9
But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin. If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.

1 Peter 1:18-19:
For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.

Romans 3:21-25:
But now a righteousness from God, apart from law, has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. God presented him as a sacrifice of atonement, through faith in his blood.

Christ’s substitutionary death for us on the cross effected our salvation, not a trip to Hell:

2 Corinthians 5:21:
God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

The work was finished on the cross, not elsewhere:

John 23:43,46:
I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise. … Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.

1 Corinthians 1:17:
For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel-not with words of human wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.

I had a little fun at Creflo Dollar’s expense by quoting extensively from what is allegedly one of his sermons. I’ve not heard this sermon, so I cannot verify he actually said this, but I’ve seen so many corroborations to this effect that I have no reason to believe that Dollar, a Word of Faith style preacher, would’ve said these things. This illustrates what you get when you take the doctrine that Christ went to Hell to it’s full, logical conclusion:

This is quoted from http://www.letusreason.org/Wf42.htm

“Somehow, Jesus has got to get to hell in order to get the keys that they stole from Adam in the garden of Eden. Now Lucifer was in that garden illegally. Now somehow, Jesus is going to have to end up in hell, illegally. But in order to get to hell. He’s got to look like a sinner. Or they’re not going to receive Him into hell, you’ve got to be a sinner. He’s got to somehow look like that serpent on that stick in Moses’ day. He’s got to look like a serpent in order to be taken in.”

“And Jesus who had never sinned, made an exchange with His covenant partner. He says, “Let Me wear your coat of sin. It’ll make Me look like a sinner. I’ve never sinned, but if I can put your coat of sin on, when I get back I’m going to give you my coat of righteousness.” So the Bible says that He who had not sinned was made sin. And hell looked up there and they couldn’t figure out how but they snatched Him. Get Him! So now Jesus entered in legally into hell. But He was there illegally. Because once you get to hell there’s got to be some record of your sin.”

“Now He had to stay there 3 days and 3 nights because that’s what His word said. Jesus said “tear this temple down and in 3 days I’ll raise it up again”. Some of you all said what? Jesus went to hell, that’s what the whole book of Acts chapter 2 says that He suffered the pains of hell. You better hope He went to hell because if He didn’t go you and I would have to. You better hope He became every sickness, disease and depression and every piece of mess in the world because whatever He didn’t become you and I would have to become. “

Creflo explains “When I began to read how his blood has cleansed me I loved him more. When I began to read how he went to hell for I began to love him more.”

He describes the scene like this, “And there’s Jesus right in the pit of hell. Grabbin the devil by his collar, and say you remember when you came into My garden illegally? Well I’m in hell illegally and I come to take the keys of authority that I gave to Adam and I want every key but He said I not only want the key you took from Adam I want the key that you took for all of My children. That had to take on this sin, I’m here to set them all free. …Then on the 3rd day Jesus, oh lord, [tongues] listen to this, was the first born again man. He was born hallelujah, hallelujah, He was born from death to life. … He was born from life to death, then in hell was born from death to life and was raised up from the dead as the first fruit of many brethren” (Our Equality with God Through Righteousness 1/21/2001)

Creflo Dollar goes on to explain Jesus, “Suffered everything He suffered when He was here on this planet. Whipped with the cat of nine tails. Crucified on the cross at calvary. Somebody says ‘Oh that’s suffering’ But He not only suffered when He was in a physical body, His spirit stepped off the cross, went to HELL. The Bible says in the book of acts the pains of hell. Suffered everything that a man could ever suffer. Somebody say ‘What?’ Yep. You better hope He went through everything that you could ever go through, because whatever Jesus did not take on, you and I would have to take on.” (Changing your World magazine, Creflo Dollar 1/17/2003)

Also for your enjoyment, I give you the creed I read in class:

The Apostle’s Creed
I believe in God, the Father Almighty,
    the Creator of heaven and earth,
    and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord:

Who was conceived of the Holy Spirit,
    born of the Virgin Mary,
    suffered under Pontius Pilate,
    was crucified, died, and was buried.

He descended into hell. [See Calvin]

The third day He arose again from the dead.

He ascended into heaven
    and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty,
    whence He shall come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy *catholic church,
    the communion of saints,
    the forgiveness of sins,
    the resurrection of the body,
    and life everlasting.


And finally, here are some word studies I copied-and-pasted out of a Word Study application I have on my computer:

Paradise Defined
paradeis (parádeisos; gen. paradeísou, masc. noun.)

Paradise. This is an oriental word which the Greeks borrowed from the Persians, among whom it meant a garden, park, or enclosure full of all the vegetable products of the earth. In Xenophon’s economics, Socrates said that the king of Persia took particular care, wherever he was, to have gardens or enclosures full of every beautiful and good thing the earth could produce. These were called paradises. The original Eastern word pardes occurs in Neh 2:8; Ecc 2:5; Son 4:13. In Sanskrit, paradésha and paradisha meant a land elevated and cultivated. In Armenian, pardes means a garden around the house planted with grass, herbs, and trees for food and ornament. The Sept. uses it to refer to the Garden of Eden (Gen 2:8). In later Jewish usage and in the NT, parádeisos is used for the abode of the blessed after death. Paradise, before Christ’s resurrection, has been thought to be the region of the blessed in Hades although it was not specifically called by that name (Luk 16:23). Jesus said He would take the repentant thief with Him to paradise (Luke 23:43).

Hades in the NT was the world or abode of the dead in general. According to the notions of the Jews, Hades was a vast subterranean area where the souls or the spirits of the dead existed in separate states until the resurrection of their bodies. The region of the blessed during this interval, or the inferior paradise, was thought to be in the upper part of this receptacle. Beneath this was the abyss, Gehenna or Tartarus, in which the souls of the wicked were subjected to punishment.

The expression “the paradise of God” means the celestial paradise where the spirits of the just dwell with God. By comparing 2Co 12:4 to 2Co 12:2, we see that it is also called the third heaven. This is an allusion to the three heavens: the lower heaven or hemisphere; the middle heaven or firmament; and the superior heaven, i.e., the highest heaven, the abode of God, the angels, and glorified spirits, the spiritual paradise (cf. Eph 4:10; Heb 4:14; Heb 7:26; Sept.: Deu 10:14; 1Ki 8:27; see Rev 2:7 in relation to Gen 2:8).
Syn.: ouranós (G3772), heaven.
Ant.: hades (G86), abode of the dead; géenna (G1067), the place of eternal punishment; or Tartarus (G5020).

Heaven Defined
(ouranós; gen. ouranoú, masc. noun. Heaven, sky, air. The sing. and pl. are used similarly and interchangeably. There is no difference in meaning between them.)

(I) In the NT, in a physical sense, it means the over-arching, all-embracing heaven beneath which is the earth and all that is therein. In this not only do the fowl of the air fly (Mat 6:26; Mat 8:20; Mat 13:32), but the clouds are suspended (Mat 24:30; Mat 26:64; Luk 12:56) and the rain is formed (Jam 5:18); also the sun, moon and stars are placed in the same celestial expanse (Mar 13:25; Heb 11:12).

(II) It is also used for that heaven where the residence of God is, called by the Psalmist “the holy heavens” (a.t.), or “heavens of holiness” (a.t.), of separation (Sept.: Psa 20:6). It is God’s dwelling or resting place (Mat 5:34, Mat 5:45, Mat 5:48); where the blessed angels are (Mar 13:27); from whence Christ descended (Joh 3:13, Joh 3:31; Joh 6:32-33, Joh 6:38); where after His resurrection and ascension “He sitteth at the right hand of the Majesty on high” (a.t. [Heb 8:1]) and appears in the presence of God on our behalf (Heb 9:24); and where a reward is reserved for the righteous (Mat 5:12; 1Pe 1:4).

(III) The heavens are used metonymically of God in the OT (2Ch 32:20 [cf. 2Ki 19:25; Isa 37:15-16; Dan 4:23, Dan 4:28]). Ouranós, heaven, is used with the same sense in the NT (Mat 21:25; Mar 11:30-31; Luk 15:18, Luk 15:21; Luk 20:4-5; Joh 3:27). Thus, the kingdom of the heavens, or heaven, is syn. with the kingdom of God (Mat 19:23-24).\

(IV) In 2Co 12:2, Paul was raptured to the third heaven and returned. This is called Paradise (2Co 12:4) which is applied to the state of the faithful souls between death and the resurrection where they are admitted to immediate communion with God in Christ, and to a partaking of the true Tree of Life which is in the midst of the paradise of God (Luk 22:43; Rev 2:7).

(V) There is a final heaven which in Heb 11:16 is referred to as a better or a heavenly country; in Heb 13:14 as a continuing city; and in Rev 21:2 the holy city, new Jerusalem. It is the place where the believers are going to receive their inheritance which is incorruptible (1Pe 1:3-5). See also Mat 6:19-20; 1Co 2:9; Col 3:2; Rev 21:1-5. Consult a Gr. concordance for the rest of the references.
Deriv.: epouránios (G2032), heavenly, what pertains to or is in heaven; ouránios (G3770), heavenly; ouranóthen (G3771), from heaven; messouráne¯ma (G3321), mid-heaven, the midst of the heavens.
Syn.: parádeisos (G3857), paradise.
Ant.: ge¯´ (G1093), earth; geénna (G1067), hell, everlasting punishment; háde¯s (G86), the state or place of departed spirits.

Hades Defined
(háde¯s; gen. hádou, masc. noun from the priv. a (G1), not, and ideín, the inf. of the 2d aor. eído¯ (G1492), to see. In Homer and Hesiod the word is spelled Haïde¯´s meaning obscure, dark, invisible. Hades, the region of departed spirits of the lost (Luk 16:23).)

It corresponds to Sheol in the OT which occurs 59 times. In the NT, Háde¯s occurs only 10 times. It is found nowhere in John’s gospel, the epistles of Paul, the Epistle to the Hebrews, or the General Epistles. Three of the occurrences are on Christ’s lips (Mat 11:23 [with Luk 10:15]; Luk 16:18; Luk 16:23). In two of these, the words are obviously used in a figurative sense: in the case of Capernaum to express an absolute overthrow, a humiliation as deep as the former loftiness and pride had been great; in the case of the Church, to express a security which shall be proof against death and destruction. The third occurrence, in the story of the rich man and Lazarus (Luk 16:19-31), is of a different kind and has even been taken to put our Lord’s confirmation on the Jewish idea of two compartments in Hades, distinct from and yet near one another. In Act 2:27, Act 2:31, the word Háde¯s occurs in a quotation from Psa 16:10 in an application of OT faith in the advent of Christ, His death, and His resurrection. Therefore, it has again the meaning of the world of the departed into which Christ passed like other men, but only to transform its nature from a place accommodating both believers and unbelievers to one for unbelievers only (Mat 11:23; Mat 16:18; Luk 10:15; 1Co 15:55; Rev 1:18; Rev 6:8; Rev 20:13-14).

In all the NT passages except Mat 11:23; Luk 10:15, Hades is associated with death. It expresses the general concept of the invisible world or abode into which the spirits of men are ushered immediately after death. The prevalent idea connected with it in its association with death are those of privation, detention, and just recompense. The thought of the relative reward of good is subordinate, if expressed at all, to the retribution of evil and to the penal character pertaining to Hades as the minister of death. In none of the passages in which the word itself occurs have we any disclosures or even hints of purgatorial fires, purifying processes, or extended operations of grace.

The state of human beings in Hades is immediate and irreversible after death, although it does not constitute the eternal state, for Hades itself later becomes the exclusive place for unbelievers. It is cast into the lake of fire (Rev 20:14), while the reign of the just becomes paradise (Luk 23:43; 2Co 12:4; Rev 2:7) which is ultimately absorbed into the final heaven (Rev 21:1). Our Lord conclusively teaches in the story of the rich man and Lazarus that there is no possibility of repentance after death. It is in this light that 1Pe 3:18-20 should be viewed (cf. phulake¯´ [G5438], prison).
Unfortunately, both the OT and NT words have been translated in the KJV as “hell” (Psa 16:10) or the “grave” (Gen 37:35) or the “pit” (Num 16:30, Num 16:33). Hades never denotes the physical grave nor is it the permanent region of the lost. It is the intermediate state between death and the ultimate hell, Gehenna (Géenna [G1067]). Christ declares that He has the keys of Hades (Rev 1:18). In Rev 6:8 it is personified with the meaning of the temporary destiny of the doomed; it is to give up those who are in it (Rev 20:13), and is to be cast into the lake of fire (Rev 20:14).

Syn.: Géenna (G1067), the final destiny of the wicked, hell; tartaróo¯ (G5020), the prison of the fallen angels or evil spirits; ábussos (G12), abyss, the place where the dragon (dráko¯n [G1404]), i.e., Satan, is bound during the millennial reign (cf. Luk 8:31; Rev 9:11); límne¯ (G3041) and toú purós (G4442), lake of fire, the place into which the beast and the false prophet are cast after their defeat by Christ. An additional statement in Rev`21:8 describes those who have their part in the lake of fire, compare the description of those who are outside the city (Rev 22:15).
Ant.: parádeisos (G3857), paradise; kólpos Abraám (kólpos [G2859], bosom; Abraám [G11], Abraham), Abraham’s bosom; ouranós (G3772), heaven.

Tartarus Defined
(tartaróo¯; contracted tartaro¯´, fut. tartaro¯´so¯, from Tártaros (n.f.), the subterranean abyss of Greek mythology where demigods were punished.)

It is mentioned in the pseudepigraphal book of Enoch as the place where fallen angels are confined. It is found only in its verbal form in 2Pe 2:4 meaning to cast into or consign to Tartarus. It is part of the realm of death designated in Scripture as She’o¯l (H7585) in the OT and Háde¯s (G86) in the NT. These angels are being held in this netherworld dungeon until the day of final judgment. Peter’s usage of this term is not evidence either that Christianity was a syncretistic religion or that Peter himself believed in the pagan myths about Tartarus. Peter has adpated a word and not adopted a theology.

[tags]BlogRodent, Heaven, Hell, Heaven-and-Hell, theology, church, Christianity, Pentecostal, Evangelical, Assemblies-of-God, death, eternity, afterlife, paradise, hades, gehenna, universalism[/tags]

3 thoughts on “Heaven and Hell: September 28, 2005, class #3

  1. David Edgren

    It is always hard to explain something from scripture that is really a product of pagan mythology. Hell.

    It is always hard to explain something from scripture that is really a product of Satan’s first temptation of Humanity. Eternal life without God.

    I’m a Seventh-day Adventist Pastor for good reason. The Bible is being devastatingly misinterpreted by many theologians and denominations.

    For an Biblical view of Hell from the Adventist perspective see: “

    For an Biblical view of the state of the dead from the Adventist perspective see: “

  2. Rich Post author

    I don’t find the concept of Hell hard to explain at all. What are sometimes difficult to explain are linguistic issues.

    The doctrine promulgated by the link you provide is so bizarre as to not even require a response from me.


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