Gary, Gary, Gary, what are we going to do with you? I have no idea what Bible you have been reading, or what Bible you reference as a Hebrew Bible, but, my English translation of the Hebrew Bible mentions HELL several times prior to the Bible being 2/3’s finished. In other words times in the first two thirds of the Bible HELL is mentioned. Could it be that you’re as wrong about anything else as you are about that?
Dear Pastor Bill, I was very careful in choosing my words in my statement above. The Hebrew Bible is not the same as the King James Version of the Christian Bible. I know that you believe that the KJV is the only true Bible, but I cannot fathom where you obtain the evidence for this belief. I believe that you base this belief on very, very weak assumptions.
Anyway, let’s compare the passages you have listed below with the same passage in the Hebrew Bible and see if they say the same thing. If they do not, which Bible should we choose? If you say the KJV, then I must ask: How is it possible that English Bible translators in the early seventeenth century understood the Hebrew language better than the Jewish people themselves??
I will include, at times, some of the surrounding passages from the Hebrew Bible for the context of the passage in question.
22 For a fire is kindled in mine anger, and shall burn unto the lowest HELL
, and shall consume the earth with her increase, and set on fire the foundations of the mountains.Orthodox Jewish Bible (OJB):
20 And He said, I will hide My face from them, I will see what their end shall be; for they are a very perverse generation, banim in whom is no faithfulness.
21 They have moved Me to jealousy with that which is lo El (not G-d), they have provoked Me to anger with their vanities; and I will move them to jealousy with those which are lo Am (a nonpeople); I will provoke them to anger with a goy naval (foolish, senseless nation) [Ro 10:19].
22 For an eish is kindled in Mine anger, and shall burn unto the lowest Sheol, and shall devour Eretz and her increase, and set on fire the foundations of harim.
The word “Hell” does not appear in this passage.
It is a fundamentalist Christian assumption to believe that “Sheol” and “Hell” are the same place. My statement above specifically says that there is no mention of “Hell” in the first 2/3 of the Hebrew Bible. Why did the translators of the KJV substitute the word “Hell” for the Hebrew word “Sheol”???
In Genesis Jacob says that he will go down to Sheol to be with his dead son, Joseph. Are we to believe that the Patriarch Jacob was headed to an eternity burning in Hellfire, joining his son Joseph in that horrific pit of divine torture?? No. “Sheol” means “grave” or “depth of the earth”.
6 The sorrows of HELL
compassed me about; the snares of death prevented me;
Orthodox Jewish Bible (OJB):
And Dovid (David) spoke unto Hashem (God) the devarim of this shirah (song) in the day that Hashem had delivered him out of the palm of all his oyevim (enemies) and out of the palm of Sha’ul:
2 And he said, Hashem (God) is my rock, and my matzadah, and my deliverer;
3 The Elohei (G-d of) my Tzur; in Him will I trust; He is my mogen, and the keren of my Salvation, my stronghold, and my refuge, my Moshia; Thou savest me from chamas.
4 I will call on Hashem, Who is worthy to be praised; so shall I be saved from my oyevim.
5 When the waves of mavet (death) compassed me, the floods of scoundrels overwhelm me;
6 The chevlei Sheol (cords of Sheol) encompassed me; the snares of mavet confronted me;
7 In my distress I called upon Hashem, and cried to Elohai; and He did hear my voice out of His Heikhal, and my cry did enter into His oznayim.
Are we to believe that David was burning in Hell in this passage?? Again, no mention of “Hell”.
8 It is as high as heaven; what canst thou do? deeper than HELL
; what canst thou know? Orthodox Jewish Bible (OJB):
7 Canst thou search out the cheker Eloah (depths of G-d)? Canst thou probe to the tachlis Shaddai (the end, completeness of Almighty)?
8 It is like the heights of Shomayim; what canst thou do? Deeper than Sheol; of what canst thou have da’as?
9 The measure thereof is longer than ha’aretz, and broader than the yam (sea).
10 When Eloah passes by and arrests and convenes for judgment, who then can constrain Him?
Once again, no mention of “Hell”.
is naked before him, and destruction hath no covering. Orthodox Jewish Bible (OJB):
6 Sheol is naked before Him, and Avaddon hath no cover.
The word “Hell” not found in this passage.
17 The wicked shall be turned into HELL
, and all the nations that forget God.
Orthodox Jewish Bible (OJB):
17 (18) The resha’im shall be turned into Sheol, and all the Goyim that forget Elohim.
Sheol, not “Hell”.
10 For thou wilt not leave my soul in HELL
; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.
Orthodox Jewish Bible (OJB):
For Thou wilt not abandon my nefesh in Sheol; neither wilt Thou allow Thine Chasid to see shachat (corruption, the pit, the grave, the abyss of corruption;
We are seeing a pattern, aren’t we readers? The Hebrew Bible uses the word “Sheol” and the translators of the English King James Bible use the word “Hell”. What’s up? Why are the KJV translators changing the Word of God Almighty??
I could copy and paste all the rest of the passages below but I will let the reader do this himself or herself. Go to Biblegateway.com and look up these passages in the Orthodox Jewish Bible. I will bet you that you will not see the word “Hell” in any of these passages. Not only will you not find the word “Hell” you will not find the concept of someone being burned alive, in a pit of torture, in the afterlife, as a punishment from God in any of these Bible passages. I (and many Bible scholars) believe that the concept of Hell was brought into Second Temple Judaism from pagan sources: the Egyptians and the Greeks during the Greek occupation of Palestine in 300-200 BC.
Psalm 18:5 (KJV)
5 The sorrows of HELL compassed me about: the snares of death prevented me.
Psalm 55:15 (KJV)
15 Let death seize upon them, and let them go down quick into HELL: for wickedness is in their dwellings, and among them.
Psalm 86:13 (KJV)
13 For great is thy mercy toward me: and thou hast delivered my soul from the lowest HELL.
Psalm 116:3 (KJV)
3 The sorrows of death compassed me, and the pains of HELL gat hold upon me: I found trouble and sorrow.
There’s 10 references to “HELL” in less than the first ½ of the Bible…
Wrong, Pastor Bill. That is 10 references to “Sheol” in less than the first 1/2 of the Bible…
I believe the middle verses speak well for us..(me anyway)
I believe the ½ way mark is;
Psalm 118:8 (KJV)
8 It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man. 9 It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in princes.
I believe the ½ mark in the complete Word of God is in Pas 118 so I stopped there. I can show you several more if you’d like.
Now if you are referring only to the Old Testament then I would divide it a little differently agreeing that the middle of it would be somewhere close to between 2 Chronicles and Ezra… But even this way it is easy to see that HELL was mentioned prior to the 2/3’s mark of this Book also.
I believe the Greek occupation of Palestine
was about 539 BC…. The writing of Deuteronomy was approximately 1406 BC and the book of Job about 2150 BC…. No one but fundamentalists believe these dates are accurate. Many scholars believe that the Pentateuch was written in the sixth or seventh centuries by priests in Jerusalem during the reign of King Josiah.Authorship of the Penteteuch (Genesis, Exodus, Numbers, Leviticus, Deuteronomy): Today most academic scholars accept that the Torah has multiple authors, and that its composition took place over centuries. According to John Riches, Professor of Divinity and Biblical Criticism at the University of Glasgow: “The consensus of scholarship is that the stories are taken from four different written sources and that these were brought together over the course of time to form the first five books of the Bible as a composite work. The sources are known as J, the Jahwist source (from the German transliteration of the Hebrew YHWH), E, the Elohist source, P, the priestly source, and D, the Deuteronomist source. … Thus the Pentateuch (or Torah, as it is known by Jews) comprises material taken from six centuries of human history, which has been put together to give a comprehensive picture of the creation of the world and of God’s dealings with his peoples, specifically with the people of Israel.” —WikipediaAuthorship of the Book of Job: ascribed by Jewish tradition to Moses, it is generally agreed by scholars that the book comes from the period between the 7th and 4th centuries BCE, with the 6th century as the most likely date for a variety of reasons. —Wikipedia
In the 330s BCE, Alexander the Great conquered the area now called Palestine, and the region changed hands numerous times during the wars of the Diadochi, ultimately joining the Seleucid Empire between 219 and 200 BCE. In 116 BCE, a Seleucid civil war resulted in the independence of certain regions including the minor Hasmonean principality in the Judean Mountains. —Wikipedia
So maybe the subject of “HELL” has been around, in print, a little longer than you had thought….that’s of course using sources other than the Bible so I’ll admit they could be off a little bit… I can’t figure out if that answer is scientific or historical or mathematical. I suggest that you do some study of this subject, Pastor Bill.
More important than when the word “Hell” first showed up in recorded history is the thought of how long it will last. According to the only source I truly trust, the Bible, hell with death will one day be delivered up and will be cast into the lake of fire…..note;
Revelation 20:13‑14 (KJV)
13 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.
14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.
You have given no good evidence for why we should believe the Bible is true other than your own sincere, devout opinion.
I know, Gary, I can’t prove this is true by putting it in a test tube or under a microscope but try this for a change….why don’t you prove that the “HELL” you thought was first mentioned in about 539 BC (approximately 1500 years late) is not going to be cast into the lake of fire…..Maybe the evidence is not as clear as you had thought…. Just thinking how glad I am that I am;
Again, I suggest you research this subject, Pastor. Google the term “The Documentary Hypothesis”.
In Christ and Happy
Pastor Bill..Col 2:6