THERE IS NO HELL
This post, with the addition of several other topics, may be read at the following link: Salvation, Hell,& Resurrection
There Is No Hell
Regardless of the many myths, opinions, teachings, and misunderstandings, there is no place called Hell where people are eternally tormented with fire. There are various scriptural reasons for this particular interpretation, such as: the parable of Lazarus and the rich man; the lake of fire in the Revelation; various references in Daniel – 7:9 his throne was like the fiery flame, and his wheels as burning fire; and several others.
What I have learned is that God is spiritually pictured as fire and His imminence may indeed be some type of fire that we are not familiar with. Fire represents the righteous judgment of God. Fire, from a human understanding, is the essence of God.
Exodus 3:2 And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush: and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed.
Exodus 24:17 And the sight of the glory of the LORD was like devouring fire on the top of the mount in the eyes of the children of Israel.
Deuteronomy 4:36 Out of heaven he made thee to hear his voice, that he might instruct thee: and upon earth he shewed thee his great fire; and thou heardest his words out of the midst of the fire.
Psalms 104:4 Who maketh his angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire:
Matthew 3:11 “I baptize you with water, for repentance, but the one coming after me is more powerful than I am — I am not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.
Acts 2:3 And tongues spreading out like a fire appeared to them and came to rest on each one of them.
There are over 500 instances of the word “fire” in the KJV. Many of them refer to actual fire as we know it, such as the fire of a burnt offering. It may be noted that burnt offerings to God are prepared with actual fire as spiritually symbolic of the fire of God. God perhaps receives things through His fiery essence which must be spiritually symbolized by actual fire when offered by an earthly person such as an Old Testament priest.
Paul writes in the book of Romans that an enemy who hungers should be given food and drink. This action will place coals of fire on his head. These are not actual hot coals which would burn as torture, but the righteous judgment of God as a spiritual symbol to that person.
Romans 12:20 Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head.
At the White Throne Judgment which occurs at the end of the Millennium, all works will be judged by the “Fire” of God, which again, is God’s righteous judgment. The specific type of His just sentencing is not communicated within scripture but it will be correctional not torturous. All will learn the ways of God and His laws.
1 Corinthians 3:13 Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is.
The Revelation is the only book of the Bible containing the term “lake of fire”. Daniel contains the phrase “streams of fire” but not a lake, although the streams of Daniel may perhaps be considered to flow into a lake as described by John.
The beast from the sea and the beast from the earth (false prophet) will both be placed into the lake of fire (for remediation perhaps?). In addition, this lake will be “burning with brimstone”. Brimstone can be and has been used to elicit death and torture, however, brimstone was used for purification during John’s time.
Revelation 19:20 KJV And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.
The “brimstone” (KJV, NASB), is actually sulfur (or Sulphur). The Greek word is theon, which, according to Thayer’s Lexicon, means: “divine incense, because burning brimstone was regarded as having power to purify and to ward off contagion.”
When John wrote the Revelation, sulfur, or brimstone, was thought of as a divine purification agent. The metaphor did not elicit pictures of a prison where men were tortured by fire, but a temple where men were purified by “divine incense” from burning sulfur. Thus, John uses “fire and sulfur” to indicate that men would be judged by God’s law (fire) including sulfur for the purpose of divine purification, or correction, so that they could be “saved so as through fire” according to Paul.
1 Corinthians 3:15 KJV If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.
The devil or Satan will also be placed into the lake of fire which will include brimstone.
Revelation 20:10 KJV 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 (scrutinized and examined) day and night for ever (an age) and ever (an age).
Most Bible version have mistranslated the Greek word “aion” as forever with the understanding of being eternal or without an end. Young’s literal version has it translated as “to the ages of the ages” which is more accurate without the sense of eternal or endless.
At some point after the millennial reign of Christ and the overcomers (see later) death and hell will be done away with. Hell is merely the state of death awaiting a resurrection.
Revelation 20:14 KJV And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.
The location of the souls of the dead are only hinted but not fully explained. Revelation 6:9 says that some souls (perhaps all) are under the altar of God in the heavenly dimension.
Revelation 6:9 NET Now when the Lamb opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been violently killed because of the word of God and because of the testimony they had given.
At the second resurrection, the most obstinate, non-Christian, or basically heathen types (more information below), will also be placed into the righteous judgment of the lake of fire for remediation and redemption.
Revelation 20:15 KJV And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.
The law of God is pictured as a fire in Deut. 33: 2, “from his right hand went a fiery law for them”. Later in 33:3 it is stated, ” Yea, he loved the people; all his saints are in thy hand”. The fiery law and the saints, who are filled with the fire of God, are both in His right hand.
The Lord God is a God of justice and love. He is not a God of torture and eternal punishment.
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