Hell

But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God (John 1:12 ESV)

Hell is a place originally created for Satan and the fallen angels. It is a place of eternal punishment and separation from God. Hell is also the place for the unclean spirits of offspring of the fallen angels. Finally hell became a place for human unbelievers too, who have in effect, committed the unforgivable sin by rejecting God who saves through Messiah: to reject the offer of salvation is ‘unforgivable' because it is the same conduit and means for 'salvation'.

While the Bible gives many names for what we loosely understand as Hell, and granted there may be different places for holding, waiting, torment and judgement (Outer Darkness for example); the Bible does not provide a schematic of different levels of hell. 

Many ideas surrounding ‘hell’ emerged from Greek mythology and more recently the Divine Comedy by Dante (1308-1321). The theme is that Virgil guides Dante through nine concentric circles of hell, denoting increase of wickedness toward the centre of the earth where Satan is imprisoned. In each circle's sinners are punished in a manner appropriate to their crimes. According to Dante, the circles range from the first, for the unbaptized and virtuous pagans, to the other extreme: the very centre of hell, reserved for those who have committed treachery against God. This is a fictional account of Hell.

It is possible that there are varying degrees of punishment in hell. In Revelation 20:11-15 there is a reference to people being judged according to what their acts as 'recorded in the books (Revelation 20:12). While this may or may not indicate that the 'lake of fire’ is made up of varying degrees of punishment, let’s not loose sight of the fact that clearly God’s emphasis is on avoiding eternal separation. God states that it is His desire that no one would perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16).

Jesus notes in Matthew 7:13-14 that few enter by the narrow gate and many take the wide road that leads to destruction. Jesus emphasises to follow Him and to avoid hell.

Luke 16:19-31 illustrates a compleeling description of hell punishment, where a rich man begs for a drop of water to quench his pain. While this is a different kind of pain to the knashing of teeth for eaxample, or torment for ever and ever the Bible favours no degree or levels of hell, but focuses only on avoiding it altogether by receiving him.  (John 1:12) (Matthew 28:18-20).

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