Sheol Enumerated: Hell in the Old Testament

Words, which are signs of ideas, were used by the inspired writers in their ordinary acceptation, as they must be by all who speak and write to be understood. In order, therefore, to have a correct view of their language, it is necessary to ascertain what sense they affixed to their words, and this we can only learn by consulting scripture usage. That men have attached ideas to some scripture terms which they were never meant to convey, will not be denied. That this is not the case with the words Sheol, Hades, Tartarus, and Gehenna, which we propose to examine, ought not to be taken for granted.

Most Christians have supposed that the word hell denotes a place of eternal punishment for all the wicked. Wherever they meet the word, it calls up the idea of such a place, and by many it will be deemed the worst of heresies to give it any other signification. The cry of heresy ought not, however, to deter us from candidly inquiring, “what is truth” on this deeply interesting question.

There are four words in the original languages of the Bible, which are translated by the word hell, in our common version. These are Sheol, Hades, Tartarus, and Gehenna. The first two are translated grave, as well as hell; the two last always hell in the common version [King James].

To continue reading this Bible article, click here.

Author: Walter Balfour

Keywords: Gehinnom, Valley of the Son of Hinnom, Moloch, Hinnom, valley of Ben-Hinnom, Valley of Hinnom, Ge Hinnom, Sons of Hinnom, After death, After life, Afterlife, annihilation, Annihilationism, Cast to hell, Cast down to hell, Chains of darkness, Damned go to hell, Death, Death state, Departing soul, Departing spirit, Destroyed in hell, destructionism, Dieing, Dives and Lazarus, Dominion of the grave, Do the wicked go to hell, Eternal fire, Eternal judgment, Eternal judgement, Eternal punishment, Eternal torment, Eternal hell, Eternal pit, Everlasting fire, Everlasting judgment, Everlasting judgement, Everlasting hell, Everlasting hellfire, Everlasting hell fire, Everlasting pit, Everlasting punishment, Everlasting torment, Everlasting torture, Ever lasting fire, Ever lasting judgment, Ever lasting judgement, Ever lasting hell, Ever lasting hellfire, Ever lasting hell fire, Ever lasting pit, Ever lasting punishment, Ever lasting torment, Ever lasting torture, Eternal hellfire, Eternal hell fire, Eternal torture, Eternal soul, extinctionism, Fable hell, Fabled hell, Fiery hell, Fire not quenched, Gehenna, Gehena, Gehenna fire, Gehena fire, Go to hell, Going to heaven, Grave, Gravedom, Hell, Hellfire, Hell fire, Hell forever, Hell invention of the church, Hell real, Hades, Immortal spirit, Immortal soul, Life in hell, Lost souls in hell, Man's mortality, Never ending fire, Never ending hell, Placed in hell, Punished in hell, Punished for eternity, Punished in hell for eternity, Reserved in hell, Rich man Lazarus, Rich man Lazaras, Roasting in hell, Send to hell, Sent to hell, Sheol, Sleeping in hell, Soul in hell, Soul punished in hell, Soul sleep, Soulsleep, Spirit in hell, State of the dead, Tartarus, There is no hell, Torment in hell, Tormented in hell, Undieing worm, Undying worm, Unquenchable fire, Waiting in hell, Wicked punished in hell, What happens when I die, What happens when we die, When the roll is called up yonder, Where do the lost go when they die, Where do the wicked go when they die, Where do we go when we die, Wicked hell, Worm does not die, Worm won't die, Worm will not die, Worm dieth not, Worm do not die, eternal reward, reward in heaven, heavenly reward

Bible reference(s): Genesis 3:19, Deut. 32:22, 2 Sam. 22:6, Job 11:8, Job 26:6, Ps. 9:17, Ps. 16:10, Ps. 18:5, Ps. 55:15, Ps. 86:13, Ps. 116:3, Ps. 139:8, Prov. 5:5, Prov. 7:27, Prov. 9:18, Prov. 15:11, Prov. 15:24, Prov. 23:14, Prov. 27:20, Ecc 9:10, Isa. 5:14, Isa. 14:9, Isa. 14:15, Isa. 28:15, Isa. 28:18, Isa. 57:9, Isa 66:24, Ezek. 31:16, Ezek. 31:17, Ezek. 32:21, Ezek. 32:27, Amos 9:2, Jon. 2:2, Hab. 2:5, Matt. 5:22, Matt. 5:29, Matt. 5:30, Matt. 10:28, Matt. 11:23, Matt. 16:18, Matt. 18:8-9, Matt. 23:15, Matt. 23:33, Mat. 25:41, Mk. 9:43-47, Lk. 10:15, Lk. 12:5, Luke 12:20, Lk. 16:22-23, Acts 2:27, Acts 2:31, Jas. 3:6, Jude 1:7, 2 Pet. 2:4, Rev. 1:18, Rev. 6:8, Rev. 20:13, Rev. 20:14, 2 Esdras 2:29, 2 Esdras 4:7, 2 Esdras 4:8, 2 Esdras 7:36, 2 Esdras 8:53

Source: An Inquiry into the Scriptural Import of the words Sheol, Hades, Tartarus and Gehenna, translated Hell in the Common English Version. Revised, with essays and notes, by Otis A. Skinner (Boston: A. Tompkins, 1854).

Page indexed by: inWORD Bible Software.