BIBLICAL CENTER FOR BIBLE STUDIES

God's love... "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." (Joh 3:16)

 IS HADES A CONSCIOUS PLACE?

Deu 25:1  If there be a controversy between men, and they come unto judgment, that the judges may judge them; then they shall justify the righteous, and condemn the wicked. 



Deu 25:2  And it shall be, if the wicked man be worthy to be beaten, that the judge shall cause him to lie down, and to be beaten before his face, according to his fault, by a certain number. 

Deu 25:3  Forty stripes he may give him, and not exceed: lest, if he should exceed, and beat him above these with many stripes, then thy brother should seem vile unto thee. 


Esa 53:1  Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed?   

Esa 53:2  For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him. 

Esa 53:3  He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. 

Esa 53:4  Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. 

Esa 53:5  But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. 

Esa 53:6  All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. 

Esa 53:7  He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth. 

Esa 53:8  He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken. 

Esa 53:9  And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth. 

Esa 53:10  Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand. 

Esa 53:11  He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. 

Esa 53:12  Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors. 


Luke 12:42  And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season? 

Luke 12:43  Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing. 

Luke 12:44  Of a truth I say unto you, that he will make him ruler over all that he hath. 

Luke 12:45  But and if that servant say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming; and shall begin to beat the menservants and maidens, and to eat and drink, and to be drunken; 

Luke 12:46  The lord of that servant will come in a day when he looketh not for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in sunder, and will appoint him his portion with the unbelievers. 

Luke 12:47  And that servant, which knew his lord's will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes. 

Luke 12:48  But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more. 

Luke 12:49  I am come to send fire on the earth; and what will I, if it be already kindled? 


God is the Supreme Judge who gave the ordinance of Deuteronomy 25, verse 3. This rule means that any punishment has a limit! 

In Isaiah 53, verse 5, God uses the Hebrew word stripes, 5221(Nakah) 
, and the strong 
 H2250 (Chabbuwrah)
 that signify to be wounded, smitten, beaten, killed.  When Jesus was crucified and died, did He go to hell? The Bible's answer is yes: 


Act 2:22  Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know: 

Act 2:23  Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain: 

Act 2:24  Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it. 

Act 2:25  For David speaketh concerning him, I foresaw the Lord always before my face, for he is on my right hand, that I should not be moved: 

Act 2:26  Therefore did my heart rejoice, and my tongue was glad; moreover also my flesh shall rest in hope: 

Act 2:27  Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption. 

Act 2:28  Thou hast made known to me the ways of life; thou shalt make me full of joy with thy countenance. 

Act 2:29  Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulchre is with us unto this day. 

Act 2:30  Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne; 

Act 2:31  He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, neither his flesh did see corruption. 

Act 2:32  This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses. 

Act 2:33  Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear. 

Act 2:34  For David is not ascended into the heavens: but he saith himself, The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand,
 
Act 2:35  Until I make thy foes thy footstool. 

Act 2:36  Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ. 

In this chapter, the Greek number used for hell is
 86 (hades)
By definition, the word  
hadēs
 does not mean "Physical eternal fire". Here are some of its 
definitions: 
the grave, death, the lower regions.  
 So, Jesus' body was put under the ground, but not His soul. The prophecy concerning His death does not only confirm that, Jesus said it also with one of the malefactors on the cross:  

Luke 23:42  And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. 

Luke 23:43  And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise. 

His soul was in heaven. As the Scriptures says: "
neither his flesh did see corruption."  So, It is Scriptural that hell is not a physical burning place.               


GRAVE OR HELL

Hell is the actual condition of the spiritual and physical death of mankind. The present situation of the entire human race will disappear for ever, when Christ comes again. This is what we read in the book of 1 Corinthians: "The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.


1Co 15:26. The Greek number for this word is 2288which means physical death.

 later in the chapter, we read the following statements: 

1Co 15:53  For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. 

1Co 15:54  So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. 

1Co 15:55  O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? 

1Co 15:56  The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. 

1Co 15:57  But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 


Please, analyse carefully verse 55, in the second question. The Greek word "grave", 86 (hades), is used as a synonymy of death or hell. So, the Bible clearly states that hell will be destroyed as the last enemy.  Now, in Luke 12:47-48, we can understand why God uses the expression to "
be beaten with few stripes." 
as a punishment of the wicked. Here, this is related to physical death, as spiritual death already occurred since the fall of Adam. Yes, Jesus gives eternal life to His people, but He will take away the life of sinners whose sins have not been forgiven: 
 "For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath." 
Matthew 13:12 

The Greek number for "beaten" is 1194 , which signifies to be wounded. It also reflects the same idea to be smitten unto death. Actually, Christ will not beat the unsaved with physical stripes, He will kill them. The few stripes implies that the verdict has a limit. Again, death is the limit, as the Bible indicates it :  For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. Romans 6:23

Nevertheless, some people keep having confusion when they read some expressions like "weeping and gnashing of teeth", "everlasting fire", and "everlasting punishment". We have this example in the following passages:


Mat 25:29  For unto every one that hath shall be given, and he shall have abundance: but from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath. 

Mat 25:30  And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. 

Mat 25:31  When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: 

Mat 25:32  And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: 

Mat 25:33  And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. 

Mat 25:34  Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 

Mat 25:35  For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: 

Mat 25:36  Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. 

Mat 25:37  Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? 

Mat 25:38  When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? 

Mat 25:39  Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? 

Mat 25:40  And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. 

Mat 25:41  Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: 

Mat 25:42  For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink: 

Mat 25:43  I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not. 

Mat 25:44  Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee? 

Mat 25:45  Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me. 

Mat 25:46  And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal. 


The "weeping and gnashing of teeth" is true when many will stay on earth for final destruction, on the last day. The everlasting fire and punishment is also true when wicked people, already separated from God, will cease to exist for ever without the breath of God. This punishment is eternal. What about the eternal fire? Jesus answers that in
Luke 12:49,  "I am come to send fire on the earth; and what will I, if it be already kindled?" May I ask you a question? When and where Jesus put that fire? Did not Jesus say it was already kindled? Again, if no one can not say it was a physical fire, why the religion defines the allegorical language of eternal fire as a real fire. Earlier in verse 41, of the same chapter of Luke 12, we read this irrefutable statement: "
Then Peter said unto him, Lord, speakest thou this parable unto us, or even to all?" You see, Jesus was talking in Parable. As we have always said, that is the nature of the Bible. Don't you see the everlasting fire and punishment are mentioned in the parable of God's judgment on the last day? We need to understand that Christ, the eternal fire, is already kindled as the Gospel of Judgment. The fire is eternal, because Christ the gospel is eternal: 
Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away. Luke 21:33; Deu:4 :24; 9:3; He 12:29

At the same time the punishment is eternal because the sinners, who have not been reconciled with God, are separated from God, since their birth till their destruction. They have not the privilege to become His children. Therefore they cease to exist because their spirit returns to God who breathed it in Adam.

2Th 1:4  So that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that ye endure: 

2Th 1:5  Which is a manifest token of the righteous judgment of God, that ye may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which ye also suffer: 

2Th 1:6  Seeing it is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you; 

2Th 1:7  And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, 

2Th 1:8  In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: 

2Th 1:9  Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power; 

2Th 1:10  When he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be admired in all them that believe (because our testimony among you was believed) in that day. 


So, Hades or hell is not a conscious place. It is not the traditional belief of eternal and physical fire. From its etymological point of view, Hell means death and the grave. These conditions will also cease to exist before the creation of the new heaven and earth.