The Purpose Of Hell

In the new testament of the bible the concept of hell is introduced. When god is unhappy with you, or you don't accept the message posited, the all-loving god sends you to hell-forever. A place of great torture, from which there is no redemption. Isn't punishment meant to correct behavior or attitude? Punishment is a temporary state, meant to teach and correct. So, even if one, while burning in hell, changes one's mind, understands the punishment and the message, too bad. What's the sense of this at all, other than to breed fear in people so they will accept the new testament message.

If god loves us all, created us all, and gives us the choice to either love him or suffer unbearable torture forever after death, where is the ethics or morality in this? It doesn't even make sense. Can you imagine forcing the love of your children in this way? Love me or else. God doesn't seem like an all loving being to me.

Jimmy805 Jimmy805
66-70, M
3 Responses Dec 15, 2012

Fundamentally, the evil doctrine of Helfire Torment is of Satanic, not godly origin:

Matthew 25:41, "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." Hell was created for the devil and his angels. Others who go there will be those who had a choice between God and satan, good and evil, righteousness and unrighteousness ...whether they know the Bible or not, Romans 2 speaks of the law written on people's hearts and being judged according to what they do know, now what they don't know... and rejected the good and chose to practice evil (like the d-evil).

If Hell truly was created for the devil and his angels, not mankind nor the righteous, then why was Jesus in hell after he died?

Acts 2:31

King James Bible
He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in HELL, neither his flesh did see corruption.

American King James Version
He seeing this before spoke of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in HELL, neither his flesh did see corruption.

Bible in Basic English
He, having knowledge of the future, was talking of the coming again of Christ from the dead, that he was not kept in HELL and his body did not see destruction.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Foreseeing this, he spoke of the resurrection of Christ. For neither was he left in HELL, neither did his flesh see corruption.

Webster's Bible Translation
He seeing this before, spoke of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in HELL, neither did his flesh see corruption.

Concerning Jesus, Acts 2:27 informs us -

King James Bible
Because thou wilt not leave my soul in HELL, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.

American King James Version
Because you will not leave my soul in HELL, neither will you suffer your Holy One to see corruption.

Bible in Basic English
For you will not let my soul be in HELL and you will not give up your Holy One to destruction.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Because thou wilt not leave my soul in HELL, nor suffer thy Holy One to see corruption.

Webster's Bible Translation
Because thou wilt not leave my soul in HELL, neither wilt thou suffer thy Holy One to see corruption:

Why didn't you quote from the New Revised Standard Version? It is among the few that actually translated from the original Hebrew for the OT and the original Greek for the NT. Acts 2:31 reads as follows: ‘He was not abandoned to Hades, nor did his flesh experience corruption.’
The Greeks had two places for the dead. Hades, which wasn't that bad of a place, it was just where the spirits of dead people go. Then there was Tartarus. Tartarus is what would most closely resemble the Hell that we most commonly think of.
The same can be said for Acts 2:27: 'For you will not abandon my soul to Hades,
or let your Holy One experience corruption.'
This whole argument can be chalked up to poor translations and those who get off on threatening people with hell.

I Peter 3:19, "After being made alive, he went and made proclamation to the imprisoned spirits--" Jesus went to hell to free those who would listen, the Bible says they were people from Noah's day who may not have had the opportunity to repent while on earth. Are you suggesting that ALL will be freed from hell?

I don't follow. Where does the Bible teach that these imprisoned spirits were/are in hell?

More importantly, do the living get sent to hell as well as the dead? I ask because the passage you cite says Jesus was alive, not dead, when he went to preach to the imprisoned spirits.

You're too confusing for me. Good luck!

What part did you find confusing? I'd be more than happy to clarify as best I can :)

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Hell was created for the devil and his angels, not mankind. Any person that goes there will be there by their own choices. Jesus is the Savior of all men, but especially of those that believe. Now, the days in which we live, is the time of faith... believe without seeing, but certain of its existence... both God and heaven! After death, after the earth passes away, faith will not be an option. It's not faith if you see with your eyes, and without faith it is impossible to please God. It's not God's will that any man should perish, but that all should come to a saving knowledge of Jesus. God has done all that He lovingly knows to do... He gave His very Son. From us He asks that we confess our faith in Him today.

So, accepting god on the basis of evidence won't work? We are to disregard any evidence of god (according to your response) and go strictly by faith? If god is all powerful and all loving and all beneficent, why doesn't he just forgive us? Why send someone loved to be tortured and killed.

All of creation around us is evidence of God's existence, so I don't understand your response unless you're trying to provoke an argument. In the beginning God gave Adam and Eve a perfect home, the garden of Eden. Man goofed it up, by choice. God didn't leave us to die, He sent His Son to die! Now, in humility (the hard part for most of us) He asks us to confess our love for Him. He wants a free relationship, not a forced one. You, even now, have the choice to accept Him, to love Him with your life, to give up any way of your own and make yourself completely His. He offers eternal life! Why would you do anything but run to Him and say 'yes'!!

Not trying to provoke. But asking for evidence of god is counter to having faith (of things not seen). But if one believes because of "all of creation around is us evidence" then faith is not required. And as you said, "without faith it is impossible to please god."

But back to my original question. Why torture someone for an eternity, for the "crime" of not getting it right, for not coming to the conclusion of Jesus being the savior, after a sincere search for truth. I am convinced that sincere and good people seek the truth but don't all come to the same conclusion that you have. What of all those people who have died without hearing the message of Jesus? Because they do not love him then they have "chosen" to go to hell.

I would recommend you read Romans chapter 2. God will judge people based upon their knowledge. For those who have never heard the name of Jesus I expect God to be the merciful God He is... "He is the Savior of all men, but especially of those who believe." (I Timothy 4:10) God didn't create hell to randomly throw people into... that's a wrathful God. His wrath is toward those who know better and still reject Him. Ultimately, that's all for Him to sort out, and I'm glad for that. Am I getting closer to your intended question. I've asked that question before, and what I've quoted, plus growing in my understanding of God's love, and Romans chapter 2 have all helped me.

One more thing... MANY people see the world around us and fail to see it as God's handiwork. They do not have eyes of faith. God is not asking us to be blind people. Faith is not blind. Faith sees what unbelievers cannot see. They need their heart softened by God's Spirit. We are to pray for them, as well as gently persuade them.

God has never tried to hide Himself from man in such a way that man could never find Him! Just the opposite... even after Adam and Eve sinned God goes in search of the "hiding" Adam and Eve (who now know they've done wrong). God continues His search for the lost today. He's looking for each one! And, sometimes He'll use you and me if we'll allow Him to you!

just "allow Him to!" (sorry for the confusing addition of the word 'you')

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