If you’re good you go to heaven and if you’re bad you go to hell. This “explanation” is or was drummed into people from an early age. Hell is described as a place of eternal torment. A place where the soul burns in a perpetual fire without the soul ever dying. This forever and ever.
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AFear has always been a tried and tested means of keeping people docile to certain power structures. This recipe works to this day. This fear sometimes goes so far that affected people recognize the carefree or truth-knowing contemporaries as a danger and even fight or hand them over in the sense of the power structure. The “eternal roasting in hell” was so effective that entire royal houses were shaken or brought into line with Rome. Be it through the threat or execution of an excommunication or an interdict (“church strike”). According to the widespread and instilled dogmas, both measures inevitably led to a lost soul, damned to the eternally tormenting hell.
It may not have mattered to the secular ruler, but the subordinate and also affected people were anything but amused. This provided the desired pressure on the to be “corrected” ruler of a country. Prime examples would be Henry IV and his final repentance through his “Walk to Canossa”, as well as the English King Henry II in interaction with the then Archbishop of Canterbury Thomas Becket. A conflict between King John I and Pope Innocent III soon followed. The clashes ended in excommunications and church strikes. The result is the “protecting power” Vatican over the English Crown up to the present.
Today, hell has had its day as a fear monger for many people due to the “enlightenment” and the now widespread atheism. But there are additional “contemporary” and highly effective topics. But already with the “Hell” it was a matter of pure fiction in this form. AHowever, it was so effective that the story of an “immortal soul” within a “perpetually burning hell” even became an integral part of Protestant communities. For the Catholic Church, hell is also a basis for the extremely lucrative concept of selling indulgences. In order to reconcile this with the completely misleading idea of ”factory justice”, the early medieval “Catholic think tanks” also added purgatory and other “strange stuff” as well.
While the concept of “purgatory” is not mentioned with a syllable in the Bible, or even mentioned in passing, the term “hell” does appear. However, this is only in the New Testament. In Schlachter 2000 (German language) this word can be found a total of 9 times. In King James Version there are 54 entries about a hell.
Matthew 5:29: “And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell.”
Matthew 5:30: “And if thy right hand offend thee, cut it off, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell.”
Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”
Matthew 23:15: “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.”
Matthew 23:33: “Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?”
Mark 9:43: “And if thy hand offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter into life maimed, than having two hands to go into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched:”
Mark 9:45: “And if thy foot offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter halt into life, than having two feet to be cast into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched:”
Luke 12:5: “But I will forewarn you whom ye shall fear: Fear him, which after he hath killed hath power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, Fear him.”
James 3:6: “And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell.”
Then there are passages in which “hell” is described as a property, e.g.
Matthew 5:22: “But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire.”
It’s a fact: the word “hell” actually does exist in the Bible. In the 1912 Luther Bible (German), this word is even included in the Old Testament and 62 times throughout the entire edition. A huge difference to the Bible edition “Schlachter 2000” with only 9 occurrences.
However, a look at the original texts of the Old and New Testaments provides information about this and that also explains the reason. So there are three different interpretations in three different editions of the Bible.
1.Samuel 2:6 – Luther 1912: “Der HERR tötet und macht lebendig, führt in die Hölle [hell] und wieder heraus.”
1.Samuel 2:6 – Schlachter 2000: “Der HERR tötet und macht lebendig; er führt ins Totenreich [realm of the dead] und führt herauf!”
1.Samuel 2:6 – King James Version: “The LORD killeth, and maketh alive: he bringeth down to the grave, and bringeth up.”
It can be found “Hell”, “Realm of the Dead” and “Grave”. Three not exactly identical meanings.
A literal translation of this passage from the Hebrew reads: “Yahweh [is] putting [to] death and [is] keeping alive, [He is] bringing down [to the] unseen, and HE brings up.”
The Hebrew word for “unseen” is pronounced something like “Shaul” or “Sheaul” and means literally “the unseen” or “invisible” under the earth.
Here you can see very clearly what different variants can be formed from one and the same template.
The New Testament was written in ancient Greek. Here the origin translated as “Hell” is: “Gehenna”. This word was borrowed from the Hebrew word “Ge-Hinnom”. It’s hard to believe, but “Ge-Hinnom” actually exists and can still be entered and visited today. It is a valley or gorge south of the Old City of Jerusalem. However, this canyon has a monstrous past. In the days of the original inhabitants, even before Jerusalem was conquered by Israel, this was a place of idolatry. To “honor Moloch” they sacrificed people at this site, among other things, who were finally burned. Later, this horrible place turned into a kind of waste incineration plant. A place of disgust. The phrase “if you don’t hurry, you’ll go to Ge-Hinnom” might have been just as common as “if you’re not good, you’ll go to hell”.
The Hebrew word “Sheaul” in the Old Testament, which means “invisible subterranean” and simply describes the grave, became “realm of the dead” or “hell”.
The term “hell” is therefore nothing more than a translation of a word with an originally different meaning, but loaded with the imaginative ideas of those who would like to have people in rank and file. Fear is the trump card.
Although Hell is not what has been indoctrinated into human minds for centuries, it does represent a place or “facility” that will have fatal consequences for humans. The above Bible quotes from the New Testament are all statements of Jesus Christ and describe a number of characteristics. So it is recognizable in Mat 5:22 that hell is a judgment of God with the help of fire. In Mat 5:29 we read that it is not the soul that goes to hell, but “the whole body”. Mat 10:28 shows that in hell soul and body are destroyed. In Mat 23:33 this place is described as judgment. Mark 9:45 describes the fire of hell as unquenchable.
The propagists of a classical hell like to take the “eternal” punishment, an “eternally burning fire” as proof for their theses of an eternal stay in the burning hell. However, the Bible shows that something “lasting forever” should not be taken literally, but should be understood as an event with “eternal consequences”. According to a literal interpretation, smoke should still be visible over Sodom and Gomorrah today (Jude 1:7). Incidentally, such smoke would now be a valuable clue as to the exact positions of these two cities at one time. The destruction was “too thorough” for that. However, this smoke does not exist, but its consequences lasted at least until today and it will remain so. The “Hellfire” serves the final annihilation of human existence as a whole and is inextinguishable until the last existence is extinguished.
Another fatal consequence of the thesis of “eternal torment in hell” is the completely wrong image of God formed from it. The image of a relentless vengeance god who will torment short-lived humans forever after their transgressions. The complete opposite of the real character of God. What would the future eternal life of the saved be like if they knew that their once loved but unsaved children, parents, and friends would be tormented forever?
Theses are in circulation that describe a good-natured son Jesus Christ who is to be loved, but that the father God must be hated because of his desire for revenge. That is just as wrong as putting Mary above all else as the “Mother of God”.
The image of hell can safely be thrown overboard. It is actually a matter of God’s judgment, which will take away human existence as a whole once and for all eternity. This can also be seen from the descriptions in the disclosure, among other things. There the “2nd death” is described, which after being thrown into the “Lake of Fire” (e.g. Rev 19:20) will occur. The final and irrevocable separation from God. Eternal death, but by no means eternal torment.
The tale of an eternally tormenting hell simply supports the business model of works justice in connection with indulgences and also obscures the true plan of salvation based on justification by the grace of Jesus Christ by faith.