REPLACEMENT THEOLOGY SERIES LESSON 3
IS THERE A HELL?
Hebrews 10:25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
We will have the fellowship of the Spirit and the renewal of the Word. I have missed you all very much, yet my prayers for you all have kept you close to me.
REVIEW AND OVERVIEW OF THE PAST TWO LESSONS:
As is stated in Revelation 12:9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.
There is a well-established system of false, pagan religious beliefs that the majority of mankind accepts as truth. All governments are themselves, a false religion. Most of our educational system especially in the areas of science, health, history, and origins are all based upon evolution, which denies the true reason for our existence – that of becoming a Spirit Being in the Family of Yahweh, and the true Creator.
Romans 1:20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Deity; so that they are without excuse.
Romans 1:25 Who changed the truth of Yahweh into a lie, and worshiped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.
Romans 1:28 And even as they did not like to retain Yahweh in their knowledge, Yahweh gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;
Unless we are blessed enough to have our minds open to the truth, we cannot escape deception!
Acts 26:18 To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto Yahweh, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.
Mankind is living a lie. Everything is phony and counterfeit, even our food, money, the world’s religions, patriotism, our freedoms, etc.
So why is all this and the subject of Replacement Theology so important? It is important because this knowledge of the truth is Salvational for all of us. It completely encompasses our entire relationship with our Creator and gives us our very purpose for being. We must purge our lives of all the false pagan beliefs and methods of worship in order to keep our Sanctification with him.
It is so very important to Yahweh that we worship Him the way He commands us too. Our Covenant Relationship with Him is a legal contract. His commandments are not the 10 suggestions. Set Apart Days and Sabbaths are commanded assemblies. They protect our relationship with Him and keep us in Covenant Relationship with Him. These things are Salvational. It is what sets us apart from the rest of the world.
John 17:17 Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.
John 17:18 As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.
John 17:19 And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.
Strong’s #G37 hagiazō hag-ee-ad’-zo
From G40; to make Set Apart, that is, (ceremonially) purify or consecrate; (mentally) to venerate: – hallow, be Set Apart, sanctify. This cannot be accomplished without someone separating himself or withdrawing from fellowship with the world. It means to withdraw from fellowship with the world by first gaining fellowship with Yahweh.
John 4:23 But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.
1 Peter 1:14 As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance:
1 Peter 1:15 But as he which hath called you to be Set Apart, so be ye Set Apart in all manner of conversation;
1 Peter 1:16 Because it is written, be ye set Apart; for I am Set Apart.
1 John 5:20 And we know that the Son of Yahweh is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Yahshua Messiah. This is the true Elohim and eternal life.
1 John 5:21 Little children, keep yourselves from idols. Amen.
There are hundreds of Scriptures that tell us to seek and hold to the truth and reject false and pagan ideas and methods of worship. This is a life-long pursuit of learning, growing and putting sin out of our lives.
In the first lesson of Replacement Theology, we learned a simple definition. Replacement Theology is “any false doctrine or teaching that replaces a true one.” In the first two lessons, we studied some of these false replacement doctrines:
- The use of the word “church.” The word church is pagan in origin. There is no such word found in scripture. Both the original Hebrew and Greek refer to those in Covenant Relationship with Yahweh as a “congregation” or an “assembly.”
- The Jews are not the chosen people. The chosen people are the whole house of Israel containing all 12 tribes. They have been called to be in Covenant relationship with the Gentiles grafted in later. This is very important to know so we can understand our true identity with Yahweh.
- Where is heaven and is heaven the reward of the saved. We explained what and where heaven is. It is not the reward of the saved. Rulership on earth in the Kingdom of Yahweh is. This is so important because if people don’t really know where they are going, they won’t know what path to take to get there. They also will not know how to prepare themselves for rulership and marriage with Yahshua.
We also proved that there are no men in heaven waiting to start the Millennial Kingdom, but those who are dead are asleep in Messiah and the rest of us wait for the Resurrection.
IS THERE A HELL?
Where is it? What is it? Is there an ever-burning hell where sinners are tormented for all eternity?
This is a subject where Replacement Theology introduced by the pagan writers and the Catholic Church have concocted a fear religion and it is one of the worst corruptions of all. They changed the self-defining scriptural definition to fit their own doctrine to hold people in fear and captivity.
Some of the followings are excerpts from a reprint article from Herbert W. Armstrong entitled “Is There a Hell?”
COMMON IDEA OF HELL:
First, what is the generally accepted common belief in our Western world about hell? Here’s the terse and brief summation of this popular belief, which is quoted from the Encyclopedia Americana:
“… As generally understood, hell is the abode of evil spirits; the infernal regions . . . whither lost and condemned souls go after death to suffer indescribable torments and eternal punish . . . Some have thought of it as the place created by the Deity, where He punishes with inconceivable severity, and through all eternity, the souls of those who through unbelief or through the worship of false gods have angered Him. It is the place of divine revenge, unhampered, never ending.”
Now where, and how, did this popular belief about hell originate?
The Encyclopedia Americana states further: “The main features of hell as conceived by Hindu, Persian, Egyptian, Grecian and Christian theologians are essentially the same. The Western religious leaders from Roman times through the Middle Ages borrowed the doctrine of eternal torture from the pagan philosophers. Certain writers of the Middle Ages had such tremendous influence on the Christian-professing world, that their writings and teachings came to be generally accepted and believed, until it became the doctrine of the Christian-professing world. Among these influential writers were Augustine and Dante Alighieri.
What About the Millions of Heathens?
In spite of missionaries from the West, actually more than half of all the people on this earth have never so much as HEARD the ONLY name by which men may be SAVED – the name of Yahshua Messiah! Now is there some other way by which men may be saved? The Bible says there is NOT!
Acts 4:11 This is the stone which was set at naught of you builders, which is become the head of the corner.
Acts 4:12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.
That means that thousands of millions of people on this earth have lived, and DIED, without ever having known anything about Divine salvation – without SAVING KNOWLEDGE – never having heard the ONLY name by which men may be saved! Now think what that means! IF all unsaved go immediately to hell at death – the hell commonly believed in – then more than HALF of the people who have lived on this earth have been consigned there – and they are there, now, without ever having been given so much as a CHANCE to escape it!
Ask yourself candidly, do you believe THAT is the plan by which an all – wise, all – merciful, loving Elohim is working out his purpose here below?
Now what is the TRUTH?
1 Timothy 2:3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of Yahshua our Saviour;
1 Timothy 2:4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.
This is Yahweh’s will, that all men come to the knowledge of the truth. If that time is now, then the Almighty Yahweh has failed – but that time is not now. There are yet future judgment periods where the rest of mankind who have never had any bible knowledge or knowledge about our Savior and Messiah will have their first chance to receive salvation. The plan of salvation is for all of mankind.
Hell, Fire in the Bible
Yahshua said in a passage very often quoted: “And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out: it is better for thee to enter into the kingdom of Yahweh with one eye, than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire: where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched. For every one shall be salted with fire, and every sacrifice shall be salted with salt” (Mark 9:47-49).
Now exactly what is this hell fire? This word hell is an English word. Mark wrote, originally, in the Greek language. The word originally inspired, which Mark actually wrote, was the Greek word Gehenna, which certainly does refer to FIRE.
But in most passages in the New Testament where the English word hell is found in our English translations, the original Greek word was a different word, Hades-which does NOT refer to FIRE at all, but has an altogether different meaning.
Incorrectly Translated “Hell”
Remember we merely read a translation of the Bible from its original languages. A leading Bible dictionary, called A Dictionary of the Bible, edited by James Hastings, says this:
“In our Authorized Version the word ‘hell’ is unfortunately used as the rendering of three distinct words, with different meanings. It represents, (1) the ‘Sheol‘ of the Hebrew Old Testament, and the ‘Hades’ of …the New Testament… It is now an entirely misleading rendering. especially in the New Testament passages. The English revisers, therefore, have substituted the original Greek word ‘Hades’ for ‘hell’ in the New Testament. In the American revision the word ‘hell’ is entirely discarded in this connection. . .. The word ‘hell’ is translated (2) as the equivalent of the Greek word tartaros, (2 Peter 2:4; compare with Jude 6), and, (3) as the equivalent of the Greek word ‘Gehenna.'”
Hell is an old English word, and 370 years ago, when the Authorized Version was translated, the people of England commonly talked about putting their potatoes in HELL for the winter – a good way of preserving potatoes – for the word then meant merely a hole in the ground that was covered up – a dark and silent place – a GRAVE.
And now the Greek word Gehenna. I quote from Hastings:
“Gehenna: the word occurs twelve times in the New Testament. This term ‘Gehenna’ represents ‘the Valley of Hinnom’ (Nehemiah 11:30, 2 Kings 23:10, etc.). The place was . . . a deep narrow gorge in the vicinity of Jerusalem, understood to be on the south side.
It is repeatedly mentioned in the Old Testament (Jeremiah 19:6, etc.). It became an object of horror to the Jews, and is said to have been made the receptacle for bones, the bodies of beasts and criminals, refuse and all unclean things. The terrible associations of the place . . . the fires said to have been kept burning in it in order to consume the foul and corrupt objects that were thrown into it, made it a natural and unmistakable symbol of dire evil, . . . ABSOLUTE RUIN. So, it came to designate the place of future punishment.”
Hell – A Place of Destruction
Gehenna was a place of DESTRUCTION and DEATH – not a place of living torture! Yahshua was talking to Jews who understood all about this Gehenna or Valley of Hinnom. Utter DESTRUCTION by fire was complete. NOTHING was left, but ashes!
Every text in the Bible translated from this Greek word Gehenna means complete destruction – not living torture – NOT eternal LIFE in torment! THE BIBLE says, in Romans 6:23, “The wages of sin is DEATH” – not ETERNAL LIFE in torture. The PUNISHMENT revealed in the BIBLE is DEATH – the cessation of life. Eternal life is the GIFT of Yahweh!
Then WHY have we been believing that PUNISHMENT is ETERNAL LIFE in fire? And WHY have we been believing we already have eternal life and don’t NEED to come to Yahweh through Yahshua to receive it as HIS GIFT?
The PUNISHMENT is DEATH. It is the second death, from which there shall be no resurrection! The PUNISHMENT is for ETERNITY – DEATH for eternity – ETERNAL punishment – but NO where does THE BIBLE say anything about the PAGAN teaching of eternal punishing. It’s eternal punishment, not eternal punishing!
When Yahshua spoke of being cast into “Gehenna FIRE,” he was using this expression as an illustration of the LAKE OF FIRE, which THE BIBLE reveals is to be THE PLACE of this final punishment – this second DEATH. He referred to Revelation 20:14: “And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.” THAT fire will be much hotter than Dante’s imaginary HELL!
What Happens to “Hell“?
Do people go at DEATH to the fictitious hell of Dante’s imagination to be TORTURED by flames of fire forever – and then are they to be brought OUT, to go into a JUDGMENT, to see if Yahweh had made a mistake in having punished them so long in this “hell“?
Notice Revelation 20:13-15: “And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book or life was cast into the lake of fire.” The LAKE OF FIRE which Yahshua referred to is a place of DEATH, not of eternal life – the SECOND DEATH – ETERNAL punishment!
Notice what Yahshua said in Matthew 10:28: “. . . fear him which is able to DESTROY both soul and body in [GEHENNA].” Here in plain language Yahshua said the SOUL could be destroyed – and that it would be DESTROYED in the GEHENNA that has been falsely translated by the English word hell! Gehenna is a place of DESTRUCTION!
Again, Yahshua used this word Gehenna as quoted in Matthew 23:33: “Ye serpents,” he said to the Pharisees, ” . . . how can ye escape the damnation of [GEHENNA]?” – the second DEATH – eternal PUNISHMENT!
The ancient rebellious cities Sodom and Gomorrah suffered, as we read in Jude 7, the vengeance of ETERNAL FIRE. But they are not still burning. They were burned up FOREVER – eternal DESTRUCTION!
Now what happens in this “hell” – derived from the Greek word Gehenna? Let the Set Apart Word of Yahweh answer: “For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble; and the day that cometh shall burn them up saith Yahweh Elohim, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch. But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall. And ye shall tread down the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I shall do this, saith the Messiah of hosts” (Malachi 4:1-3).
Yahweh Is Love – and Justice!
Yahweh is an Elohim of LOVE – or MERCY, as well as an Elohim of ABSOLUTE JUSTICE! If he were the vain, angry, unjust god pictured by the pagans who invented this popular conception of heaven and hell, then, according to the common belief of the illustration of Lazarus and the Rich Man, saved mothers up in heaven are hearing the shrieks, seeing the indescribable AGONY, writhing, of their own lost children down in hell – actually able to carry on a conversation with them – yet UNABLE to help them. Would THAT be the heavenly BLISS it is generally represented? Psalm 37 OUGHT to make plain to us this matter of heaven and hell. Notice! “For evildoers shall be cut off; but those that wait upon Yahweh, they shall inherit the earth. For yet a little while, and the wicked shall not be; yea, thou shalt diligently consider his place, and it shall not be. But the meek shall inherit the earth; and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace. The wicked plotteth against the just, and gnashed upon him with his teeth. But the wicked shall perish, and the enemies of Yahweh shall be as the fat of lambs: they shall consume; into smoke shall they consume away. For such as be blessed of him shall inherit the earth; and they that be cursed of him shall be cut off! The righteous shall inherit the land, and dwell therein forever” (Psalm 37:9-12, 20, 22, 29). And notice Psalm 104:35: “Let the sinners he consumed out of the earth, and let the wicked be no more. And now, Isaiah 66:24: “And they shall go forth, and look upon the carcasses of the men that have transgressed against me: for their worm shall not die, neither shall their fire be quenched; and they shall be an abhorring unto all flesh.”
Never to Be Quenched?
“Neither shall their fire be QUENCHED.” Does that mean burning forever and never burning up? Try this test: Put a piece of paper in a pan. Light it with a match. Now, don’t QUENCH that fire! Don’t put it out – for that’s what “quench” means. Very soon the paper will burn up. Then put it down on the floor and step on it! Now it’s merely ashes under the sole of your feet – precisely as THE BIBLE plainly says the wicked shall be! In Jeremiah 17:27, Yahweh warned the Jews that Jerusalem would be burned, and the fire would not be quenched – unless they repented. In Jeremiah 52:13, you read the account of the burning of Jerusalem. That fire was NOT QUENCHED! It is NOT still burning! Do you know that THE BIBLE teaches the resurrection of all who die? The apostle Paul said his HOPE was the hope of the RESURRECTION! As the resurrection is true doctrine, then the pagan myth of an eternal TORTURE, beginning at death, is as deceptive as Satan himself! If all Unsaved – even all who never heard the ONLY name Yahshua Messiah – are roasting, screaming, in such a hell, and can never get out, HOW can there be a RESURRECTION? Thank Yahweh! – there is to be a resurrection to JUDGMENT, as well as a resurrection to eternal life of the dead IN Messiah! Yes, thank Yahweh, he so LOVED the world – we NEED not perish, but through Yahshua we may have EVERLASTING LIFE!
The lake of fire is an act of mercy.
Ezekiel 18:32 For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith Yahweh Elohim : wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye.
Those who develop the Mind of Messiah, i.e., Yahweh’s character which is that of serving, loving and giving selflessly to others. It will come naturally and be a delight for all eternity in the Kingdom of our Heavenly Father.
Those who have willfully rejected Yahweh and His way of life would be miserable in the Kingdom. So, Yahweh in His great mercy will quickly burn up the wicked to save them from a life of eternal misery in the Kingdom. Next time we will cover more on Replacement Theology.
Luke 20:34 And Yahshua answering said unto them, the children of this world marry, and are given in marriage:
Luke 20:35 But they which shall be accounted worthy to obtain that world, and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry, nor are given in marriage:
Luke 20:36 Neither can they die any more: for they are equal unto the angels; and are the children of Yahweh being the children of the resurrection.
Human beings who do not qualify to be given Eternal Life, will mercifully just be burned up in the Lake of fire. Spirit beings who cannot die will remain in the Lake of fire.
Mathew 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.
Mathew 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
Revelation 20:10 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 day and night forever and ever.
We have this wonderful opportunity to help the rest of mankind receive Salvation. So let us remain faithful to our great calling and continue to put out false doctrines out of our lives