I got to thinking about Hell last night.  The image of Hell that we have is people suffering in flames surrounded by demons tormenting them.  As my last post covered, this is not completely true because Hell was actually created FOR the demons/fallen angels to be tormented (Matthew 25:41).  Satan and his demons will be suffering right next to all the humans who rejected Christ while alive.  But the main thing that people think of when they think of hell is probably some variation of “hot”, “flames”, “burning” or some such.

People don’t talk about the psychological punishment in hell.

Let me ask you a question: Do you have any regrets? Any words you said you wish you hadn’t? Anything you’ve done that you wish you could have done differently (or not at all)?  I think we both know the answer to those questions, because none of us are perfect.

You see, that’s one of the great parts of being a believer in Christ:  we are forgiven.  We don’t live with regret.  I believe that when a Christian dies he or she is taken into the presence of Christ immediately (2 Cor 5:8).  And after the Great White Throne Judgment Christ will “wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain” (Rev 21:4). So believers will not live with regret on the new earth.

But the unsaved?  I think that will actually be the worst part of Hell.  I saw an episode of the British show “Black Mirror” (I don’t recommend the series because it’s got some inappropriate stuff in it) but the episode “White Christmas” had a man being tormented inside a scenario reminding him of his greatest regret over and over, and at the end of the episode, the technology existed to speed up his clock so every hour of real time would literally feel like a thousand years to him. The last words of the episode were “Leave him there until tomorrow” (or something like that).  So this man would be tormented by the knowledge of what he had done for 24,000 years before they came back the next day.   Add in unbearable pain from flames and another billion years of time and you will have only scratched the surface of how bad hell is.

Little wonder that I don’t wish anybody to “go to hell” and that I try to warn people both in real life and on the internet of the danger they are in if they don’t trust Christ.

The acronym YOLO (“You Only Live Once”) is used to refer to the belief that you only get one life and you should pack as much enjoyment into it as you can, because this is the only chance you get to have fun.   I prefer to think of it with Hebrews 9:27 in mind:

And inasmuch as it is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment,

Those who say “Only God can judge me” seem to forget that one day He will.


About Steve Picray

I am a conservative Baptist Pastor in the midwestern United States. Every day I commit my life to Jesus Christ. This blog is my view on life. My prayer is that, by reading what I write, you will learn more about me, more about God, and be assisted in becoming the person God means for you to be. If you have a question, just e-mail me at spicray AT gmail DOT com. God Bless!
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11 Responses to Hell

  1. steve bournias says:

    (Matthew 25:41). says everlasting fire NOT hades It is an illustration not literal. The devil will be reduced to nothing Hebrews 2;14-KJ says destroyed look that english word up. The body dies and so what is left with a nervous system to suffer? People ignorant of Jesus BC where are they?

    • Steve Picray says:

      Hebrews 2:14 uses the Greek word καταργήσῃ (render inactive, destroy). I don’t need to look up English words because the Bible wasn’t written in English. If you base your doctrine solely on the meaning of English words the translators chose and you don’t look at the original meanings, your theology will be lacking.

      The Bible says repeatedly that some people will suffer forever. One verse off the top of my head is Matthew 25:46 “everlasting punishment.”

      • steve bournias says:

        κόλασιν αἰώνιον is the Greek you said you prefer instead of the English….

        “Eternal” Punishment (Matthew 25:46) Is NOT Found In The Greek New Testament.

        By Tony Nungesser and Gary Amirault

        The entire concept of eternal or everlasting punishment hinges primarily on a single verse of Scripture– Matthew 25:46. This is the only place in the entire Bible where we find these two words together AND only in some Bibles. There are over a dozen English translations which do NOT contain the concept of “eternal punishment” on ANY of their pages, NOR the pagan concept of Hell.

        The Greek form for “everlasting punishment” in Matthew 25:46 is ”kolasin aionion.” Kolasin is a noun in the accusative form, singular voice, feminine gender and means “punishment, chastening, correction, to cut-off as in pruning a tree to bare more fruit.” “Aionion” is the adjective form of “aion,” in the singular form and means “pertaining to an eon or age, an indeterminate period of time.” (Note: the two words in many, not all translations become reversed when bringing the Greek into English, that is, “kolasin aionion” literally punishment everlasting is reversed to everlasting punishment so as to make better sense in English.)

        “Aionion,” as shown above, is the singular form of the adjective of the Greek noun “aion.” Many people unfamiliar with the Greek do not realize that the endings of the same word change (inflection) to indicate its mood, case, gender, etc. Therefore, “aionion” may appear with different endings. “Aionion, aioniou, aionios,” for example, are all different inflections of the adjective form of the noun “aion.”

        The noun “aion” in Greek literature has always meant “an indeterminate period of time. It could be as short as the time Jonah spent in the belly of a fish (three days or nights even though the KJV has him in the “belly of Hell” “forever,” obviously a mistranslation; see Jonah 2:2, 2:6.), the length of a man’s life, or as long as an age.

        The Bible speaks of at least 5 “aions” and perhaps many more. If there were “aions” in the past, then aions must have an end. The New Testament writers spoke of “the present wicked aion” which ended during that very generation. Obviously, it was followed by another “aion”– the “aion” in which we presently live. If there are “aions” to come, it must mean that this one we live in will also end.

        There is a verse which says “the consummation of the aions” proving that each “aion” ends. So how can they be eternal?
        There is “the coming eon” (Matt.10:30, Luke 18:30
        There is “the present wicked eon” (Gal.1:4)
        There is “the oncoming eons (future)(Eph.2:7)
        There is “the conclusion of the eon (present) (Mt.13:39,40)
        There is “the secret concealed from the eons (past) (Eph.3:9)

        Plainly, the Greek word “aion” transliterated “eon” cannot mean “eternal.” A study into the Greek of the Biblical period and before will bear this out.

        “Aionion” is the adjective of the noun “aion.”

        Since grammar rules mandate an adjective CANNOT take on a greater force than its noun form, it is evident that “aionion” in any of its adjective forms (ios, ou, on) CANNOT possible mean “everlasting” or anything remotely indicating eternity or unending time.

        For example, “hourly” cannot mean “pertaining to days, weeks, months, or years. The word MUST mean “pertaining to an hour.” Therefore, “aionion,” the adjective form of the noun “aion” which clearly means a period of indeterminate TIME, CANNOT mean, “forever and ever, eternal, everlasting, eternity, etc.” or other words which connote timelessness or unending ages.

        Therefore, those many Bibles which do NOT contain the teaching of everlasting punishment or Hell are true to the original languages of Greek and Hebrew. Those which teach everlasting punishment or Hell are false. Scholars are just as easily subjected to the “traditions of the elders” as the rest of us. It’s time to let the original Greek and Hebrew languages of the Bible break down the traditions of men.

        Here is a list of Bibles which have taken major steps towards correcting many of the corruptions found in the King James Bible, NIV, NASB, NRSV, Amplified, as well as other leading selling Bibles:

        Some of them are published by leading Evangelical Christian publishers like Baker Book House, Kregal and Eerdman’s Publishing. Here’s a partial list of some English Bible translations that do NOT contain Hell nor the concept of everlasting punishment: Rotherham’s Emphasized Bible (Kregal Publishers), Young’s Literal Translation of the Holy Bible (Baker Book House Publishers; Robert Young is author of the famous Young’s Concordance), Concordant Literal Translation of the N.T. (Concordant Publishing Concern), Scarlet’s New Testament (Nathaniel Scarlett, 1798), The New Testament (Abner Kneeland, 1823) Emphatic Diaglott (Greek/English Interlinear), The New Covenant (J.W. Hanson, 1884), New Testament in Modern Speech (Weymouth, 1910), The Restoration of Original Sacred Name Bible (1976), The Twentieth Century New Testament (1900), The New Testament of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Anointed (James L. Tomanek)1958), The Western New Testament (1926), The New Testament, a Translation (Rev. Edgar Lewis Clementson, 1938), The People’s New Testament (Arthur Overbury), The New Testament, A New Translation based upon the Oldest Manuscripts (Johannes Greber, 1980) Jonathan Mitchell New Testament (2009) Far Above All New Testament (2009).

        There are other translations like the Companion Bible King James Version, American Standard Version (1901), the Newberry Reference Bible (Still published by Kregal Publications), and the Riverside New Testament by Ballantine (1934) which contain footnotes, marginal readings and appendages which point out that several key Greek and Hebrew words have been MIStranslated by such Bible versions as the King James Bible.

        For much more information on how this word as well as words have been mistranslated in many leading selling Bibles, write to the address below or visit our internet site. http://www.tentmaker.org

        • Steve Picray says:

          It seems the major point of the wall of text you copypasted is that in Matthew 25:46 the words “everlasting punishment” don’t refer to eternity, but rather to a set period of time. Since the word for everlasting (“αἰώνιον”) is used BOTH in relation to the amount of time of the punishment AND the amount of time the saved will live (ζωὴν αἰώνιον), I need clarification. Does this verse mean:
          A. The punishment of the unsaved is not everlasting, and neither is the life of the saved,
          B. Our life with Christ is eternal, as is the punishment of those in hell, or
          C. You believe the word αἰώνιον means two totally separate things even though the context and structure of the verse (a comparison of two like things) demands that the word be interpreted the same both times.

          So which is it?

  2. steve bournias says:

    Question: you assert that by death any unsaved will go to eternal torment…where do you send babies? heaven or hell? young children/ heaven or hell? aborted fetuses/ heaven or hell? unsaved Native Americans ”Indians” before Europeans arrived in the new world? Chinese persons of the era before any missionaries ever arrived there? Are the babies that go to heaven babies up there or fully grown? Are there nurseries in heaven?Where did people go BC to heaven or hell? Where did King David go heaven or hell?[Acts 2:24] Nobody ascended to heaven BC [John 3;13]

    Are there fingers, tongues and eyes in hell? Does a poor man that dies emaciated from hunger require angels [plural] to carry him to the literal bosom of Abraham?If a beggar is lame and must be carried to the gate of the rich man why does he go back there every day and not go elsewhere where he might get more than crumbs? How do the dos know to be there every day to lick his ulcers?No mention in Luke 16 that the beggar was ”saved”.When did he become a skilled preacher that he might go warn the many brothers of the rich man to repent? Does the soul or spirit of the rich man have a nervous system that can feel literal pain in hell? Fire is oxidation. Oxygen and a carbon that produce light heat and flame. Where does the fuel come from to keep hell burning eternally?
    Do evil spirits have a nervous system so they can suffer eternally? Does the devil and his angels have any burnable body?

    • Steve Picray says:

      I do not have all the answers. The bible does not give direct answers to all the questions you ask. I can tell you that based on some of the things I read in Scripture, I believe that all those who die before they reach the age where they can understand their need of salvation will go to heaven. So babies (including aborted babies) and young children go to heaven.

      As for the rest of your first paragraph, this short four minute video answers it.

      How do we know Lazarus was “saved”? Because Jesus says he went to Abraham’s Bosom. Do the dead in hell have bodies? I believe they do. And your question of where the fuel comes from? You’re describing a supernatural place and complaining that it doesn’t seem to obey the natural laws of our universe. Don’t you see how silly that is?

      For the rest of your questions, I will have to ask God when I get to heaven.

      • steve bournias says:

        Kolasin does not refer to punishment. It means cutting off…By the way the illustration says that When the Son of man arrives….a future event…the literal goats go to literal fire yes? or are these symbolic goats going to a literal fire? You presume that the goats are the unsaved yes? Yet they address Jesus as ”Lord” when did we this or that and not do this or that? Know of too many unsaved calling Jesus Lord? Th sheep go where? Heaven? Says”enter into life” NOT to heaven. The goats depart….depart from where to where?
        Doesn’t say the sheep are saved. Says they attend to the needs of the least of Christ’s brothers. Doesn’t say the goats are unsaved. Says they do not attend to the needs of Christ’s brothers. Your use of texts from this illustration of Christ to prove your ”hell-fire” eternal conscience torment entirely out of context from what is actually stated versus your Dante’s Inferno eternal barbecue pit theology is not rightly dividing the word of truth.Rather it is butchering it and piecing together bits and pieces of it from here and there to paint a picture of horror. God threatens people with unending eternal torment if they don’t accept your idea of Christ.So you think you are a shoe-in to go to heaven. Show us a scripture where Christ says that YOU are going to heaven please and that when you arrive there you will politely ask God the unanswered questions that your narrow pagan scare theology teaches.

        • Steve Picray says:

          The word κολασιν means punishment. You’re saying it doesn’t but it does. My Greek lexicon defines the word as “punishment”. Every biblical resource I have says the Greek word means punishment, so if you are saying it doesn’t mean punishment you’re going to have to show me who else on earth says it doesn’t mean punishment.

          The sheep and the goats. Did you read the words in verses 31-32? It uses the word ὥσπερ which means “as, just as” showing very clearly that the Lord is judging the nations (v.32) JUST AS a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. So no, these are not literal animal members of the sub-family Caprinae. They are people.

          The “sheep” (saved gentiles) go to glory, according to verse 34 “…inherit the kingdom prepared for you…”. The “goats” (unsaved gentiles) go to hell according to verse 41″…depart from me you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels.” And the summation in verse 46 clearly explains what will happen: The saved (“righteous”) will pass into eternal life while the unsaved will go into everlasting punishment. And yes, you’re right, it doesn’t say heaven. That’s probably because according to Revelation 21-22 believers don’t live in “heaven” in eternity future. We will live on the new earth, but with God who will be among us and we will worship Him forever.

          You’re right, it doesn’t say the sheep are saved. It says they gave aid and comfort to Christ’s brothers (the Jews) during the tribulation. I understand this passage to be saying that during the tribulation the only people helping the Jews will be believers. “A Gentile going out of his way to assist a Jew in the Tribulation will mean that Gentile has become a believer in Jesus Christ during the Tribulation. By such a stand and action, a believing Gentile will put his life in jeopardy. His works will not save him; but his works will reveal that he is redeemed.” (BKC).

          God threatens people with unending eternal torment if they don’t accept your idea of Christ No, God threatens people with unending eternal torment if they don’t accept Christ, not my idea of Christ. The Bible is not a hard book to read, it’s pretty clear that if you place your faith in Christ, you will receive eternal life, and if you don’t place your faith in Christ, you will be tormented forever, first in hell, and then in the lake of fire (Rev 20:10-15).

          I find it amazing that you are referring to my belief system as “pagan” when what I believe in this area has been the accepted teaching of the Bible regarding hell for the past two thousand years at least. This is the orthodox, fundamentalist view: Saved people go into the presence of God (colloquially referred to as “heaven”) and unsaved people go to hell.

      • steve bournias says:

        Lazarus was saved by going to Abraham’s LITERAL bosom? Was he there all by himself? How did Lazarus get saved without accepting Christ? Where on Abraham’s bosom were the other pre-christian saved? How comfortable is it for two males to be so close on one another’s chest for all eternity?Since all things here are literal correct? Nothing is symbolic?
        Silly? Not me. You. Because your theology is entirely without any solid scriptural foundation. One wrong assumption upon another. No verse says babies go to heaven like you assert. No verse says anything you have argued. Its entirely your own imagination run wild.

        • Steve Picray says:

          Obviously we don’t have all the details, but Christ gives us enough. From the context it seems that “Abraham’s Bosom” was a place. In Luke 16:26 Abraham says And besides all this, between us and you there is a great chasm fixed, so that those who wish to come over from here to you will not be able, and that none may cross over from there to us. which clearly indicates there are two locations with a chasm between. And the context also tells us that the people on Abraham’s side (known as “Abraham’s Bosom”) is a place of comfort (v. 25) and the people on the other side are tormented in flame (v. 23 “In Hades he lifted up his eyes being in torment”, v24 “for I am in agony in this flame”, v25 “and you are in agony” v28 “this place of torment”.

          Babies don’t go to heaven? I was pretty clear that I wasn’t being dogmatic about that. In 2 Samuel 12:23, David’s one year old child has just died, and he states, “I will go to him, but he will not return to me.” I understand this to mean that David will eventually go to be with his son (in Abraham’s Bosom most likely since he died before the Resurrection of Christ). It COULD simply mean “I will go to him” in the sense that the baby was dead and David will soon be dead, but given the fact that there are only two possible destinations in the future, I choose to believe that my child that died in my wife’s womb at 15 weeks is now in heaven rather than burning forever in hell because the child didn’t get to be old enough to choose Christ. You believe what you like in this area. I’m not dogmatic about it, but when I get to heaven I will find out for sure.

          And if you have decided that my theology is silly, pagan, and without any solid scriptural foundation, why do you persist in asking me questions? My answers are not going to be to your liking since they will be consistent with the things I have learned from the Bible, which you so plainly reject.

          • Todd Brubaker says:

            Numbers 14:29 The carcasses of you who have complained against Me shall fall in this wilderness, all of you who were numbered, according to your entire number, from twenty years old and above.
            Remember in the time of Moses where all those who were of the age of 19 and younger were not to die in the dessert but could enter the promised land, “after 40 years”. This was after Joshua’s report of giants in the land and the people were afraid and balked when God had said to them “take the land!” It was a type of judgement for those without faith who spoke against God, to wandered in the dessert for forty years and then die never crossing into the promised land, and a type of grace for those entering into the promise land who were under the age of “accountability.” You don’t think the kids were following there parents lead and gripping at Moses as well? They shared the same sin of disbelief. Nineteen and younger. The point is, I believe in the age of accountability and this is a president in scripture for just that, in regard to children NOT going to hell. I have heard Christian idiots preach that Children as young as 5 years are in hell? I do not believe that for one second and never will of my God!!! The age of accountability speaks of ones ability to come to that certain place of understanding or maturity and or awareness so to speak, “as a child surely does not have,” and only then are they accountable. It is my belief that, that age is more that likely a bit different person to person and only God truly knows when a young person is NOW accountable for their sins even though we are all born into sin. I see the above story / scripture as real president..Please excuse all my run on sentences.. Thought this might be interesting for Steve..

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