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Reader comment on item: A Key Change to "The Pope and the Koran"
in response to reader comment: Conspiracies to Control The World

Submitted by Joe (United States), Mar 1, 2006 at 13:25

Hell, Satan, and Purgatory are not mentioned anywhere in the Bible.

Gehenna, in the New testament, has mistakenly been translated as Hell, although in actuality it was a town, characterized by prostitutes, drug abuse, and quite literally a burning garbage dump at the center. When Jesus said "Get thee to Gehenna" he was not referring to Hell.

But think about it, why would an omni-benevolent God force His creations into eternal damnation? In the Bible Hell is not mentioned, but eternal love and omni-repentance is. God would not force His creations into doom, but, that act is forced by ourselves. Hell is a state of mind, it is the absence of God, which and who is heaven and the source of all goodness. There is no double damnation. Death, and the absence of eternal life with God is punishment enough. This "Hell" is sealed by the sins of man at death. Those who hold hatred and those who hold God in contempt are perhaps sealed to this fate.

Hell as a doctrine was eliminated by the Vatican in its traditional sense in 1995. The Book of revelation, some argue should not be in the Bible, brought about the ideas of Hell on earth. This was later moved to a Hell below earth, or a supernatural Hell. The ideas of Hell itself are stemming from Greek and Zoroastrian influences. The Hebrews had no Hell, and neither did the apocalyptic Jews (aka Jesus). The Vatican is returning to Sola Scriptura in many ways, and eliminating the outside influences, but they still believe in good works as a means to salvation.

Philosophically, the idea of a soul is also Greek. The Jews had no idea of a soul. If there is an immediate judgement after death, only the soul can travel to Hell or to Heaven. However, the soul is not corporal, and therefor is unaffected by corporal punishments. Hell basically does not make sense. In Judaism, pre 165 bc, the dead went to She'ol, there was NO afterlife, and people were only remembered.

Jesus Christ conquered death through his blood sacrifice. He brought the power of penance and the power of bodily resurrection. He conquered She'ol, and allowed for the universal resurrection at the end of time after a judgment, where pre-fall Eden would be resurrected, and those good would join with the Father in unity, in a Heaven without sin or death. By dying as Man, He took away our deaths. In dying, he destroyed death for all.

Yes Jeffery, Hell is man's creation. Just as it took about 400 years for Purgatory to be official in Church Doctrine (1215), it took until 1988 for it to be abolished. There is a lag between what the popular culture believes and what the theological teachings are. Purgatory has roots with the Bishop of Hippo, where two Hells were perceived, and prayers could aid the dead. The apocalypse of Paul, and several other non canonical texts (including the testimony of Charle's the Fat and Gratians comments) started Purgatory. It was a church doctrine, not from scripture.

Satan is a whole new barrel. First off, the "Satan" of Genesis is actually a trickster. The serpent is not Lucifer or Satan, but in fact Astarte, a goddess in Baalism, who is represented by a serpent and a tree. At its creation, the second half of Genesis is a deterrent for those who were converting from Judaism. Satan in the Bible is always referred to as "The Satan", it is a title. There is no Satan, but merely temptations, perhaps even sent by God Himself. Lucifer was a fallen Babylonian king, cast out of his country. And yes, I am aware of the phrase that Satan "fell from the sky like bolts of lightening". The translation is ambiguous, and does not refer to a Lord of Evil being cast from Paradise. Do you not think the omnipotent God could either prevent it or destroy it?

Somehow I dont think GOD would approve of torchuring his children for all eternity ;)
Submitting....

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