Jesus in Hell? Where was He for 3 days?
“He descended into hell.” This phrase from the Apostles’ Creed is the subject of much debate.Some say it should never have been included, and others say it’s an important part of the Creed.Since there are highly respected scholars on both sides, I am reluctant to take a firm stand.
Thus I shall attempt to “believe all that the Bible teaches—and resist the temptation to go further.” Was Jesus in Hell?
Was Jesus in Hell?
Verses that support this claim include Matthew 12:38-41 (″the Son of Man will be in the midst of the earth for three days and nights″); Romans 10:6-8 (″Who will descend into the abyss?: that is, to raise Christ from the dead″); and Ephesians 4:7-10 (″But what does ‘he ascended’ mean other than that he descended to the lower parts of the earth?″) Contemporary historians who disagree with this statement claim that it was not included in the Creed until the seventh century and that it has no historical precedent.In spite of the fact that the term does not appear in the earliest forms of the credo, according to Michael Bird’s research, ″…the descent was entirely universal among the church fathers of the second and third centuries″ (see, for example, Irenaeus, Against Heresies 5.31.1-2).
According to J.I.Packer and Alistair McGrath, the significance of this remark lies in the fact that it serves as another further proof that Jesus did, in fact, die on the cross.B.F.Westcott agrees, and he goes on to say, As it is, it brings our understanding of the Lord’s death to a close.Death, in our understanding, is the severance of the body from the soul.
According to this interpretation, Christ’s death was a complete and total sharing of our lot.His remains were put to rest in the tomb.It is believed that his soul has entered the condition into which we believe ours will one day arrive.He has gained for God and has made every state of human experience sacred in his presence.
- We are unable to go where He has not gone.
- He bore our nature in its life state; he bore our nature in its death state.
- While it is possible that Jesus’ soul spent those three days in Hell, Hades, Gehenna, or Abraham’s bosom, this is speculative and goes well beyond what the Bible teaches us.
- Despite the fact that the notion of Jesus in hell (as we understand it now) may make us shudder, we must remember that it was through His death that He took on ourselves our sins and became sin for us.
- Who are we to advise God how he should deal with sin in the first place?
- Perhaps this is one of the things we will be able to ask when we sit at His feet in the hereafter.
- Donald Cole reminds us that we have until then to
Was Jesus in Hell?
Scriptures cited in support of this claim include Matthew 12:38-41 (″the Son of Man will be in the heart of the earth three days and three nights″); Romans 10:6-8 (″Who will descend into the abyss?: that is, to raise Christ from the dead″); and Ephesians 4:7-10 (″But what does ‘he ascended’ mean unless it also means that he descended to the lower parts of the earth?″) Contemporary historians who disagree with this statement assert that it was not included in the Creed until the seventh century and that it has no historical precedent.In spite of the fact that the term does not appear in the earliest forms of the creed, according to Michael Bird’s analysis, ″…the descent was entirely universal among the church fathers of the second and third centuries″ (see, for example, Irenaeus, Against Heresies 5.31.1-2).
It has been suggested that this sentence is significant because it is another additional assurance that Jesus did, in fact, die on the cross, according to J.I.Packer and Alistair McGrath.Affirmed by B.F.Westcott, who goes on to say: Currently, it brings our understanding of the Lord’s death to a conclusion.Death, in our understanding, is the severance of the physical body from the spiritual.
It is believed that Christ’s death was a complete and total sharing of our fate.In the tomb, his body was placed.It is believed that his soul has entered the state into which ours will eventually arrive.Every circumstance of human existence has been blessed by him as a victory for God.
- We are unable to go where He has not already gone.
- Rather than carrying our nature as it was alive, he bore it as it was dead.
- Whether Jesus’ soul was in Hell, or Hades, or Gehenna, or Abraham’s bosom for those three days is a subject of conjecture that goes much beyond what the Bible tells us about Jesus’ life.
- Despite the fact that the notion of Jesus in hell (as we understand it now) may make us shudder, we must remember that it was through His death that He took on our sins and became sin for us.
- Who are we to advise God how he should deal with sin in the first instance?
- If we sit at His feet in Heaven, perhaps this will be one of the things that we can ask.
- Donald Cole tells us that we have till then to be patient.
- Is Jesus Really Raised from the Dead? : A Journey Through the Book of Revelations
- Observations on the Evidence for Jesus’ Resurrection
- The Beliefs of the Early Christians Regarding Jesus and the Bible
In The Apostles’ Creed (Thomas Nelson, Kindle Edition), R.Albert Mohler writes, ″The Apostles’ Creed is a statement of faith that is based on the teachings of Jesus Christ.″ On page 147 of Michael F.Bird’s What Christians Ought to Believe (Zondervan Academic, Kindle Edition), he says, ″Christians should believe that…″ Crossway Publishing Company’s Kindle edition of J.I.
Packer’s book Affirming the Apostles’ Creed (Crossway Kindle Edition) says, ″What the Creed signifies is that Jesus…truly died, and that his resurrection came from that true death, not a simulated death.″ For example, Alister McGrath writes on page 62 of his book I Believe (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press): ″It is a proclamation of the belief that Jesus actually did die.″ B.F.Westcott’s The Historic Faith (London: Macmillan, 1885), pp.76-77, is a classic example of historical faith.A word of clarity is in need.
Perhaps the most appropriate explanation for this statement in the Apostles’ Creed is that Jesus’ soul was sent to ″hell,″ as we understand it.My argument is that we should be cautious about dismissing a concept just because we don’t agree with it or find it objectionable.In All You Need to Believe (Foundations of the Faith) by C.Donald Cole (Moody Publishers, Kindle Edition), page 81, C.
- Donald Cole explains the importance of believing in God.
Did Jesus Descend to Hell Between His Death and Resurrection?
We know from Jesus’ response to the thief that when someone dies, they are instantly brought into the presence of the Father.″Truly I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise,″ says Jesus in Luke 23:42.″Truly I tell to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.″ This remark also informs us that Jesus died and was resurrected by His Father.
We don’t know much more than that regarding Jesus’ whereabouts throughout those three days.It’s important not to read too much into a parable or narrative, as this might lead to confusion.″What occurred after Jesus died?″ by Randy Alcorn is the subject of the following passage.
Did Jesus Descend to Hell? Bible Verses for this Theory
1 Peter 3:18-20 is the scripture of Scripture most frequently cited by people who believe in the existence of hell.In order to bring us to God, Christ had to die in our place in order to be raised from the dead in the spirit, after having been put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit; through which He also went and made proclamation to the spirits now in prison, who had once been disobedient, while the patience of God waited in the days of Noah, during the construction of the ark, in which a few, that is, eight people were brought safely through the water.″ ″In which also He went and made proclamation to the spirits now in prison,″ they say, referring to the verses in question.According to legend, Jesus descended into Hell and preached to the souls of the damned.
But why is this so?There is no indication in the Bible that a lost soul who has died receives a second opportunity at redemption.Is it possible that Jesus went to hell just to punish the lost souls even more?However, there is another reading of this verse that is more logical.Here’s where you can get your FREE Holy Week Guide.
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Interpreting the Scripture
Jesus was crucified in the body, yet he was raised to life by the Holy Spirit after his death.The term ″brought alive″ is a passive verb, which means that someone other than Jesus was responsible for bringing Jesus back to life.Either Jesus was brought back to life by the Spirit, or He was brought back to life by His spirit.
Regardless of the outcome, the Spirit must have had a role.The chapter then goes on to tell us who these souls in prison are: they are those who did not listen to Noah (who was preaching repentance to the world in the power of the Holy Spirit under the direction of God at the time of his imprisonment).As a result, the same Spirit who raised Jesus as a testament ″in order that He may bring us to God″ also spoke to those souls who are now in jail in Noah’s day; and they are in prison because they did not listen to the preaching when it was being given to them at the time.However, just eight persons heeded the warning and were saved—″brought safely through the floodwaters″ The term ″jail″ is used in a metaphorical sense.It is said in Luke 16:26 that lost spirits are withdrawn and restrained, and this is supported by the Bible: Furthermore, a wide gap has been established between us and you, in order that anyone who seek to pass over from here into you will not be able to do so, and that none who wish to cross over from there will be able to do so.″ Jesus did not go to hell for those three days, according to the Bible, which is not mentioned anywhere else.
In actuality, virtually little is said about what transpired during the event.Most people believe Jesus’ physical body stayed in the tomb, just as ours will remain in the grave once we die.In Colossians 1:18, Paul writes that He was taken up to be with the Father, and three days later the Spirit resurrected His body (in the same manner that our bodies will be raised—as the first-born from the dead, as well).The distinction is that God did not allow Jesus’ body to degrade like other people’s bodies did.
Other Bible Verses about Jesus’ Descent to Hell
Other Bible scriptures, such as Romans 10:6-7, Ephesians 4:8-9, and Acts 2:27, that are used to support the belief that Jesus went to hell between his crucifixion and resurrection have caused consternation among believers.However, as discussed in this ZondervanAcademic.com article, these verses are frequently taken out of context and given meaning that is not intended by the author.The Apostle’s Creed was later amended to include the phrase ″and he fell into hell.″ During his video, Did Jesus Descend into Hell Before He Was Resurrected?, Garrett Kell addressed this question.
Adapted from ″What occurred after Jesus died?″ by Randy Alcorn, Eternal Perspective Ministries, 39085 Pioneer Blvd., Suite 206, Sandy, OR 97055, 503-668-5200, CC BY-SA 2.0.
Why did jesus descend into hell for 3 days
What does it mean when Jesus descended into Hell?
The statement ″he fell into Hell″ is interpreted by the Reformed as alluding to Christ’s agony and humiliation prior to his death, and that this humiliation had a spiritual component as part of God’s punishment for the sin that he suffered on Christians’ behalf.
Why did Jesus descend to hell the dead?
According to the traditional view, Christ descended into hell as a victorious king in order to declare to the saints who had died before him that he had triumphed over sin, death, and the devil.
What did Jesus mean by hell?
This information comes from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. In Christian theology, Hell is the place or state into which unrepentant sinners are consigned by God’s final judgment, either in the general judgment or, as some Christians believe, immediately after death, if they have not repented (particular judgment).
Did Jesus say he would rise on the third day?
They will sentence him to death and hand him over to the Gentiles, who will humiliate him, flog him, and crucify him. ″He will be brought back to life on the third day!″
What are the four last things in Catholicism?
The Four Last Things, also known as the Quattuor Novissima in Latin, are the four last stages of the soul’s journey through life and the afterlife. Death, judgment, heaven, and hell are the four final stages of the soul’s journey through life and the afterlife.
Who is the Holy Spirit?
Because he is the Creator Spirit, he existed prior to the formation of the cosmos and, via his might, God the Father created the universe in and through Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit, according to the majority of Christian denominations, is the third Person of the Holy Trinity – the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit – and is Almighty God.
Where is Hell located?
In fact, he is the Creator Spirit, who was present before to the formation of the cosmos and whose might enabled God the Father to create everything in Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit is considered to be the third Person of the Holy Trinity – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – and to be Almighty God by the vast majority of Christian churches.
When was hell invented?
The view of hell offered by St.Augustine set the tone for official teaching for the next 1,500 years to come.However, it was Augustine of Hippo and his book, City of God, which was published in A.D.426 and set the tone for official teaching for the following 1,500 years.Augustine was born in Hippo and died in Rome.
- He maintained that Hell did not exist to rehabilitate or discourage sinners, but rather to punish them.
What does 1peter 3 19 mean?
The view of hell offered by St.Augustine set the tone for official teaching for the following 1,500 years to follow.The official theology of the Catholic Church was established by Augustine of Hippo and his book, City of God, which was first published in A.D.426 and has remained in effect for the past 1,500 years, according to historians.It was not the purpose of Hell, he contended, to reform or discourage sinners.
Is hell in the Bible?
THE LOCATION OF HELL IS DESCRIBED IN THE BIBLE. ″For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the belly of the whale, so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in THE HEART OF THE EARTH,″ Jesus Christ declares in Matthew 12:40. Hell is clearly defined in the Bible – it is located within the earth!
Who will enter heaven?
The text is translated as follows in the World English Bible: ″Not everyone who calls out to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven; but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven will enter.″
What Jesus says about heaven?
As Jesus told his disciples to pray, they should say: ″Thy kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven.″ Beginning in the third century, some Christian instructors attempted to combine this with other sorts of Platonic thinking, resulting in the notion of ″leaving earth and ascending to heaven,″ which became popular by the Middle Ages and spread throughout Europe.
What did Jesus do on the 3rd day?
Following the first two days, he will restore us, and on the third day, he will bring us to life so that we may live before him.″
Did Jesus die on Good Friday?
On Good Friday, Christians commemorate Jesus’ execution and death on the cross at Calvary, which took place on the day before Easter. Traditionally, it is held on the Friday preceding Easter Sunday, as part of the Paschal Triduum, and it may overlap with the Jewish celebration of Passover.
What is the actual date of Jesus resurrection?
Following the contrast between the synoptic date of Jesus’ last Passover, on the one hand, and John’s subsequent ″Jewish Passover,″ on the other, recent astronomical research proposes Jesus’ Last Supper occurred on Wednesday, 1 April AD 33 and the crucifixion occurred on Friday, 3 April AD 33 and the Resurrection occurred on Sunday, 4 April AD 33.
Why did Jesus ‘descend into hell’?
People are sometimes referred to as having ″gone to hell and back.″ The Bible says the same thing about our Savior as does Christianity.According to the Apostles’ Creed, a declaration of faith with origins that may date back to the questions asked of baptismal applicants in the late second century, the statement is found.As a result, it serves as a reminder that the redeeming power of Christ is available to all peoples and all periods, including those who entered and exited human history prior to his death and resurrection.This idea is often referred to as the ″harrowing of hell,″ which comes from a medieval English term that was used to describe the looting and devastation that occurs during times of conflict and is still used today.He is unable to escape from his own home in hell, which heralds the complete victory of the divine conqueror over Satan.
- Christ takes the fight to the devil himself, releasing those who have been waiting for this day for a long time.
- This belief, like many others in the Christian tradition, is not based on the specific teachings of Jesus as recorded in the gospels, but rather on his personal experience as God’s anointed instrument of salvation, as is the case with many others.
- If Christ is the Savior of everyone, how can he rescue those who lived before us?
- This was a question raised by early Christians.
- The virtuous who believed in the God of Jesus but lived before the Messiah’s entrance in human history came to be known as ″the church from the time of Abel,″ which means ″the church from the time of Abel.″ Advertisement A slew of theories arose in response to the question of how Christ may bring about their salvation, but the central notion was that people would not be able to experience the delights of God’s presence until redemption had been achieved through his death and resurrection.
According to tradition, they were considered to be residing someplace in hell or an outer chamber of the underworld, having been denied the final rewards of Christ’s redeeming work.In several New Testament passages, such understandings appear to be inferred, particularly in relation to the time period separating Jesus’ crucifixion on Friday and the finding of an empty tomb on Sunday.An excellent illustration of this may be seen in Luke 16, when an uncaring, affluent man is allocated to the netherworld, while a suffering beggar is granted rest in the ″bosom of Abraham″ (Luke 16:22).
- As mentioned more than once in Acts 2:42, God did not leave Christ to the netherworld.
- The metaphorical depiction of the hereafter as a pit or chasm appears in numerous places in the New Testament and also in the Hebrew scriptures.
- Jews believed in the concept of sheol, or the underworld, as a place where the dead were to be buried throughout the time of Christ’s mission.
- It was characterized rather literally with the same images that one would apply to a grave: a place of dust, worms, inaction, and decay, to name a few elements of the description.
- This was a fact that the earliest Christians had to deal with.
- With the belief that God possessed power over death (as depicted in Ezekiel 37’s narrative of the dry bones), Christ Jesus came to be represented as the agent who won Yahweh’s eventual triumph over sheol, even for those who were already in the place of punishment.
- According to the author, this story appeared in the March 2013 issue of United States Catholic (Vol.
- 78, No.
- 3, page 46).
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- Web Gallery of Art has licensed the use of this image under a Creative Commons license.
Why Did Jesus Descend into Hell?
It should be understood that there is no such thing as a foolish question.Take, for example, the question that was recently made to me at a church mission.During a break, a woman came up to me and said, quite shyly, ″I’m sorry.″ ″The Creed is prayed every Sunday at Mass, and after all these years, I have to admit that I have no understanding what we are talking about when we talk about Jesus descending into hell.Father, I appreciate your help.What was the reason for Jesus’ descent into hell?″ She had absolutely no need to be embarrassed.
- It’s a really good question.
- That is why, with this edition of the newsletter, I am providing you with the solution because, who knows?
- You may be reciting the Creed with a picture in your mind of Jesus hanging out with Lucifer for three days, just like the rest of us.
- By the way, it was not what He was up to at the time.
- To understand what we mean when we say that Jesus ″descended into hell″ – an event that theologians refer to as the ″harrowing of hell″ – we must first understand that the word ″hell″ in this context refers to a loose translation of Hebrew and Greek terms that pre-date Christ and refer in general to the realm of dead.
Sheol was the name given to this world by the Hebrews.The Greeks referred to it as Hades.By the way, if you really want to impress your friends and family, remind them that our English term ″hell″ derives from a Germanic designation for the place of the dead in Teutonic mythology, which they will be impressed by.
- When it comes down to it, hell is just the place where the dead reside since the Beatific Vision has not been manifested to them.
- While ″hell″ has come to signify the flaming land of the damned in our modern ears, the ″hell″ in question in Scripture – and in the Creed – was a place where both the virtuous and the bad were imprisoned ″while they await the redeemer″ (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 633).
- Aquinas and other Church academics understood the afterlife as consisting of four distinct realms or abodes, which they divided into four categories: 1.
- Limbo of the Children, a place of happiness for unbaptized children under the age of reason (note that Limbo of the Children is not an official Church teaching); 2.
- Limbo of the Fathers, also known as the bosom of Abraham (this is the abode of the Old Testament faith, which Christ emptied by His redemption); 3.
- Purgatory (the abode of those who are being purified for Heaven); and 4.
- Gehenna (the place of torment and punishment) (the abode of the eternally damned, who have rejected God in this life and have committed mortal sins without repentance – what we in English now call ″hell″).
- So what do you think about Christ’s ascension?
- As you are aware, and as the Catechism emphasizes in passage 633, not all of the dead are assigned the same fate as the living.
- It was in our Lord’s Parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus that we first learned about this ″realm of the dead″ notion of hell (see Lk 16:19-31).
- Upon their deaths, the wealthy man and Lazarus, the poor man, respectively, are resurrected to a location most Jews would recognize as the bosom of Abraham, or Limbo of the Fathers, a tranquil place of rest for the souls of those who have died in God’s love – but it is not the same place as Heaven.
- As a reminder, Christ is recounting the tale, which means He hasn’t yet died and risen from the dead.
- As a result, it would be impossible for Lazarus and Abraham to be in Heaven itself since Christ hasn’t yet opened the gates of Heaven via His redeeming work.
- The fall of Adam and Eve had resulted in the closing of the gates of Heaven.
- In this world of the dead, holy spirits such as Adam, Eve, Abraham, Moses, and others awaited the arrival of the Redeemer.
- Not until Christ has reconciled us to the Father via His redeeming work on the Cross that He will be able to rise from the dead and obtain power from the Father to reopen the portals of Heaven for us and all the redeemed, according to the Bible.
- As a result, when we state in the Creed that Christ descended into hell, we are acknowledging that He did so in order to release the just who had died before Him.
- According to what the Catechism teaches, ″Although Jesus did not descend into hell to release the wicked or to demolish the pit of damnation, he did so in order to free the righteous who had gone before him.
- His journey into hell takes the Gospel message of salvation to its fullest conclusion.
- During this time, Jesus’ messianic ministry comes to an end.″ (633-634).
- Finally, allow me to refer you to an old sermon delivered on Holy Saturday by a member of the early Church that embodies the essence of this occasion.
According to the Catechism (635), the homily runs as follows: ″Today, on the face of the planet, there is a tremendous silence and a great stillness.″ Because the King has fallen asleep, there is a deafening quiet.The earth trembled and remains motionless because God has fallen asleep in the flesh and has awoken everyone who has slept since the beginning of time.He has gone in quest of Adam, our first parent, as if he were looking for a misplaced sheep.He has gone to release Adam from his shackles and Eve from her captivity with him, out of a deep desire to visit people who live in darkness and under the shadow of death.He is both their God and the son of Eve, and he has come to free them from pain.
″I am your God, and for your sake, I have taken on the form of your son.I command you, o sleeper, to come to your senses.I did not create you to be a prisoner in hell, as some people believe.
- I am the life of the dead, and I command you to rise from the dead.″ Sister Helena and Father Dan Cambra, MIC, serve as spiritual directors for the Sodality of Holy Souls of the Marian Fathers.
What did Jesus do for three days after he descended into hell?
Q.I’d like to ask you a question.In your opinion, what did Christ ″do″ for the next three days after he was cast into hell?In terms of what Jesus accomplished between the time he was crucified and the time he was risen from the dead, the Bible doesn’t tell us much, but it does provide us with a handful of interesting suggestions.″Christ likewise suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unjust, in order to bring you to God,″ Peter writes in his first epistle to the Corinthians.
- When he was put to death in the body, he was raised to life in the Spirit, through which he went and made proclamation to the imprisoned spirits—to those who had been rebellious long before, when God waited patiently throughout Noah’s days while the ark was being constructed.″ Consequently, it is possible that Jesus traveled in the Spirit between his death and resurrection, actively preaching the gospel to people who had drowned in the great flood hundreds of years previously.
- Perhaps these individuals were judged to have missed a legitimate opportunity to respond to God because of the enormous depravity that existed on the planet at the time, and so Jesus returned and preached the gospel to them in its entirety, in light of his just finished death on the cross.
- Since the purpose of this section of the letter is to develop an analogy between baptism and rescue from the flood in the ark, it’s possible that on this occasion Jesus also proclaimed his gospel to other ″imprisoned spirits″ who had lived at different times in history, despite the fact that Peter does not mention any other historical figures.
- Later in this letter, Peter states more broadly that ″the gospel was preached even to those who are now dead, so that they might be judged according to human standards in regard to the body, but live according to God’s standards in regard to the spirit.″ ″The gospel was preached even to those who are now dead,″ Peter writes.
- There is a strong indication from Paul that some of people who heard the gospel under these conditions responded favourably to it.
The author of Ephesians cites from Psalm 68, ″When he ascended on high, he carried prisoners in his train,″ and then relates these words to Christ, saying, ″What does ‘he ascended’ signify except that he fell to the depths of the earth?″ (Ephesians 3:16).It would be the souls who responded favorably to the gospel when it was preached that would be considered ″captives,″ and Jesus would lead them out of their ″imprisonment.″ This scriptural indication about what Jesus accomplished between his death and resurrection led the community of Jesus’ followers to construct the notion of the ″harrowing of hell″ as a result of their observations.The word ″harrow″ means to despoil, and the concept is that Jesus defeated hell and freed those who were held captive there.
- This belief has a long and illustrious history in the church’s art and literature.
- The Rev.
- Christopher R.
- Smith is an ordained clergyman, author, and biblical scholar who lives in the United States.
- For the past twenty-five years, he has been involved in parish and student ministry.
- He worked as a consulting editor for the International Bible Society (now Biblica) on The Books of the Bible, an edition of the New International Version (NIV) that presents the biblical books according to their natural literary outlines, rather than chapters and verses, as opposed to the traditional chapter and verse format.
- His Understanding the Books of the Bible study guide series is based on this structure, as is his Understanding the Books of the Bible blog.
- He also worked as a consultant for Tyndale House on the Immerse Bible, a version of the New Living Translation (NLT) that presents the Scriptures in their natural literary forms, without the use of chapters and verses or section titles, as well as other projects.
- Harvard University awarded him a Bachelor of Arts in English and American Literature and Language in addition to a Master of Arts in Theological Studies from Gordon-Conwell.
- He received his Ph.D.
- in the History of Christian Life and Thought, with a minor concentration in Biblical Studies, from Boston College, which is affiliated with Andover Newton Theological School.
- View all of Christopher R Smith’s blog entries.
Did Jesus ‘Descend into Hell’ after his death?
Following his crucifixion, did Jesus ″Descended into Hell,″ as millions of Christians say in The Apostles’ Creed every week during their weekly church services?It is supported by nearly 2,000 years of Christian tradition, as well as a biblical reference in 1 Peter 3:19-20: ″After being raised from the dead, he went and made proclamation to the imprisoned spirits – to those who had been disobedient long ago when God waited patiently in the days of Noah while the ark was being built.″ (This is the New International Version.) What is referred to as the ″harrowing of hell″ is what Christ experienced while descending into Hades or hell between his death and resurrection.During the early centuries of the Christian church, it was thought that after his death, Christ went into hell in order to save the souls of the righteous, such as Adam and Eve.In his descent, Jesus tears down the walls of hell, frees the inmates, and brings the righteous to the kingdom of heaven.Ancient paintings from the Eastern Orthodox Church, as well as similar icons that are still in use in Greek and Russian Orthodox churches today, depict Christ standing over the broken gates of hell, angels binding Satan and Satan crushed under the gates of hell, while Christ pulls out two figures representing Adam and Eve who have been imprisoned because of their sin.
- The figures represent Adam and Eve because they were imprisoned because of their sin.
- The Interrogatory Creed of Hippolytus, written around 215 A.D., is an early version of the Apostles’ Creed that alludes to Christ’s ascension into the world of the dead.
- The Lord Jesus Christ, God’s only Son, is my personal Savior and Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, died on the cross, and was then buried; he descended to the dead after his resurrection (or ″he descended into hell″ or ″hades″ depending on the translation).
- He was raised to life again on the third day, after which he ascended into heaven, where he is now sitting at the right side of the Father, and he will return to judge those who are alive and those who are dead.
- Here are some other Bible scriptures that are relevant: 6 in 1 Peter 4:6 For this reason, the gospel was proclaimed even to the dead, so that, though they would be judged in the body like men, they would be able to dwell in the spirit as God.
2.27 and 31 of Acts as a result of your refusal to abandon me to the world of the dead, as a result of your refusal to allow your holy one to witness deterioration As a foreshadowing of what was to come, he talked of the Messiah’s resurrection, stating that he had not been abandoned to the realm of the dead, nor had his body begun to decay.Paul writes in Ephesians 4:8 that In order to explain this, it is told that ″when he climbed on high, he led an army of prisoners, and he bestowed gifts on mankind.″ 9 ″He ascended,″ after all, what else could it possibly signify except that he had also plunged into the lower regions of the earth?10 He who descended is also he who soared far beyond all the heavens, in order that he may fill all things with himself.) 17th chapter of Revelation When I first saw him, I collapsed at his feet, as if I were dead.
- In response to my fear, he placed his right hand on my shoulder, telling me, ″Fear not, I am the first and last, 18 as well as the living one; I died and lo, I am alive for evermore, and I hold the keys to Death and Hades.″ This weekend, on Easter Sunday, millions of Christians will gather to commemorate the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.
- What exactly is Hell?
- During the time that the Bible was being written, human ideas about hell were still in flux.
- Hell, according to historian Alan Bernstein, author of the book ″The Formation of Hell,″ has a rich cultural heritage that predates the Christian doctrine of hell.
- Following their Babylonian captivity, when they were subjected to the torment of ungodly enemies who appeared to be living an unjustifiably good life on Earth, the ancient Hebrews turned their attention to the afterlife.
- During the Babylonian exile, Jews were exposed to Zoroastrianism, which asserts there is an eternal struggle between good and evil, with good triumphing in the end.
- The Hebrew concept of ″Sheol″ – the realm of the dead – may also have been influenced by the Greek mythology of Tartarus, a place of everlasting punishment for the Titans, a race of gods defeated by Zeus, Bernstein writes.
- From about 300 B.C.
- to 300 A.D., those influences combined with Hebrew speculation about an eventual comeuppance to the worldly wicked.
- In translating the Bible from Hebrew to Greek, the Greeks used the terms Tartarus, Hades and Gehenna.
- In Greek thought, Hades is not a place of punishment; it’s where the dead are separated from the living.
- The term Gehenna referred to a ravine outside Jerusalem that was used as a garbage dump.
- It had once been a place of child sacrifice and became a symbol of pain and suffering.
- As a garbage dump, it was probably often a place of fire as trash was burned, emphasizing the symbolism of the flames of eternal damnation.
- The Bible contains a litany of colorful images of hell as both fire and darkness, as in the Gospel of Matthew, which refers to ″the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels″ and ″the outer darkness″ where ″men will weep and gnash their teeth.″ In Revelation 20:14, it is described as a lake of fire: “Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire.
- This is the second death, the lake of fire.” Note to readers: if you purchase something through one of our affiliate links we may earn a commission.
Did Jesus Actually Descend into Hell?
In the Christian church, there has always been a hot button issue that comes up every so often.This issue is concerned with the question of whether or not Jesus went to hell.There are schools of thinking that believe He did and schools of thought that believe He did not.Scripture does not provide a straightforward response to this topic; nevertheless, with more study, a more complete understanding can be gained.In some parts of the world, Christianity has always been viewed with suspicion, and this is no exception.
- Kings, emperors, and other rulers have called councils to debate and resolve concerns and contingencies in order to counteract this trend.
- The outcome of these conferences was a collection of creeds that served as expressions of religious belief.
- These creeds were developed with the help of biblical texts and theologians of the day, among other sources.
- The Nicene Creed and the Apostles’ Creed are the two most well-known creeds in the Christian church, and they are both written in Latin.
- Both creeds express similar ideas, however the Apostles’ Creed contains the phrase ″he fell into hell,″ whereas the Creed of the Holy Spirit does not contain this phrase.
The image is courtesy of Getty Images/Kesu01.
Where Did The Idea of Jesus Descending to Hell Originate? And Did Jesus Descend to Hell?
The Apostles’ Creed is an enlarged form of the Old Roman Creed, which was in use as early as the second century and was adopted by the Church of Rome.The grounds for the formation of the Apostles’ Creed are not well understood by academics.Historically, early church leaders believed the credo was penned by the apostles themselves, although we don’t know for sure.That Jesus had gone into hell is thought to have been added later, about AD 390, to the Bible.This would have occurred at the same time as a bishop by the name of Apollinarius was giving a lecture.
- The implication of his statement was that because Jesus was not entirely human, he could not be an effective sacrifice for the sins of humanity.
- During the Council of Constantinople in 381 AD, this dogma was formally rejected and condemned.
- There are a variety of explanations for why this line is not included in the Nicene Creed.
- It was during the Council of Nicaea in AD 325 that the Nicene Creed was formulated.
- In response to the teachings of a man named Arius, Emperor Constantine convened a council of church leaders to draft a formal declaration of faith.
Constantine desired for the Christian church to have a declaration of faith that would unify all of the denominations under one roof.This would have occurred prior to the inclusion of the phrase in the Apostle’s Creed.Apart from the establishment of these creeds, there are scripture passages that are held up as proof that Jesus was crucified and afterwards resurrected.
- The biblical passage 1 Peter 18-22 is commonly used as supporting evidence by academics.
- Together with Ephesians 4:9, this passage contributes to the development of the idea that Jesus may have gone into hell following his death on the cross.
Understanding the Language and Meaning of the Apostles Creed
It is vitally crucial to be able to comprehend the language of a paper.A person must be familiar with the language and understand the meaning of the terms in that language.When there is a miscommunication, the entire meaning of a document or statement might be altered.Christians and researchers today must recognize that writings from the early church were written in a variety of languages that can be difficult to decipher and interpret.When it comes to translating Hebrew or Greek into English, we must proceed with caution.
- Hell is referred to as Sheol in the Hebrew Bible, which means ″hell″ in English.
- This term literally means ″hell,″ but it refers to the current version of Hell.
- The concept of individuals who have died in their sin and are lost will be ushered into this region instantly upon death is what the phrase Sheol refers to.
- The New Testament has a reference to hell written in the Greek language.
- Because the Apostle’s Creed was originally written in Greek, we shall devote a significant amount of time to this language.
The ″abode of the dead″ is difficult to translate from Greek to English because it is described by only two words.″Gehenna″ is the Greek name for the location of hell, and it means ″hell.″ This term refers to a place of final punishment or a physical location.This term does not appear in the Apostles’ Creed.
- The phrase ″he descended into Hell″ is included in the Apostles’ Creed, and it is written in the Greek language as ″Hades.″ The Greek term for death, Hades, alludes to the condition of being dead.
- It is possible to interpret it as ″descended to those underneath.″ It does not allude to the location we know as hell as we know it now; rather, it refers to the physical condition of being dead.
- Kenneth West, a theological researcher, describes this in the following remark concerning 1 Peter 3:18-22.
- We know that our Lord as the man Christ Jesus was taken to a place of the dead known in the Old Testament as ‘Sheol,’ and known in the New Testament as ″hell,″ with ″hell″ being the translation of the Greek word for ″death,″ ″hell,″ and ″hellfire″ being the translation of the Greek word for ″hellfire.″ The phrases of the Apostles Creed have been reinterpreted by modern churches to imply something else.
- This is a transformation that has occurred as time has progressed.
- Words in the English language began to have distinct meanings from their older equivalents during the time of the Renaissance period.
- More specifically, the term ″hell″ came to refer to the location where Satan resides.
- This was not what hell was like in the biblical languages, according to the Bible.
- Many churches nowadays do not say the Apostle’s Creed, which is a sad state of affairs.
- The ones who still do so often do so without including this statement.
- Photo courtesy of Aaron Burden via Unsplash.
Did Jesus Descend to Hell?
The gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke provide accounts of the events that occurred soon after Jesus’ death.Each report provides a vivid and understandable explanation of the events that took place.The Bible tells us that Jesus cried out and surrendered His spirit in Matthew 27:50-53.Then the curtain of the sanctuary came crashing down, and the ground shook violently.The tombs of the saints were revealed when the rocks were divided.
- Afterwards, the curtain of the Temple was ripped in two from top to bottom, as recorded in Mark 15:38.
- The Bible writes in Luke 23:44-45, ″It was now around midday, and darkness fell over the entire area until three o’clock, for the sun’s light had vanished.″ There was a rift in the sanctuary’s curtain that ran down the middle.″ Among the three, Matthew’s narrative is the most vivid and detailed.
- Daniel, Elijah, and Zechariah all foretold of an earthquake and a period of darkness, which he describes in detail in his narrative of the event.
- Even more significantly, Matthew informs us that the curtain has been ripped in two.
- It is referenced in all three narratives, which demonstrates the significance of this event in human history.
The curtain signified the distinction between the clean and the impure.Located in the Temple, it was suspended above and above the entrance to the Holy of Holies.This location was so sacred that no one other than the high priest was allowed to enter.
- Aaron was permitted to enter and put the blood on the atonement seat on the Day of Atonement, according to Exodus 26, and he did so.
- The Israelites were not permitted to enter the presence of the Lord at their leisure.
- This says a great deal about the ripping of the curtain, doesn’t it?
- Is it possible that Jesus went to hell?
- Because of Jesus’ death and resurrection, we no longer had to go through rituals or make sacrifices in order to enter God’s presence, as we had done in the past.
- It had been decided to make the ultimate sacrifice.
- Everything predicted by the prophets of the Old Testament had come to pass.
- Photograph courtesy of Getty Images/Tanya Sid
Why Do Some People Think Jesus Descended into Hell?
The concept that Jesus went into hell is still held by many Christians today, although many have called this belief into doubt.Some people are unable to comprehend this notion for whatever reason.According to Fr.Sev Kuupuo, the reason Jesus did descend to hell and the goal of His descent were as follows: ″Jesus descended to Hell in order to release souls who had been imprisoned.″ The mission of Jesus’ ascension into Hell was to bring about the release of the holy people of the Old Testament.Others believe that Jesus Christ went to Hell in order to endure the whole severity of suffering, which is the full impact of human sin, in order to provide a total atonement for the sins of humanity.″ It is claimed that the fulfillment of Jesus’ atonement for our sins could not take place unless Jesus entered the area of punishment known as Hell.
- He had to save the holy people of the Old Testament who were waiting for Him in Abraham’s bosom as well as the rest of the world.
- In support of this idea, R.C.
- Sproul states that, ″He travels to hell to free those spirits who have been imprisoned from the beginning of time.″ ″His mission in hell is one of victory, releasing Old Testament saints,″ says the author.
- In conclusion, those who believe that Jesus descended into hell believe that He did so in order to save souls and to fulfill the sacrifice for our sins on the cross.
- It is not a notion that He traveled to that location and stayed for a time.
Photograph courtesy of Getty Images/Tomertu
Why Do Some People Believe Jesus Did Not Descend into Hell?
Many different reasons are used by those who profess their opinion that Jesus did not descend into hell in order to support their position.The most widely held belief is that Jesus was God manifested in human form.He is the one who created the area we know as hell.He expelled Satan from heaven and sentenced him to an eternity in hell.After all, if God created hell and decided its purpose, how could he possibly visit it?
- Wasn’t Jesus a holy figure who had no business being in this place?
- This has been investigated by others, and they have come to their own conclusions based on what they have discovered.
- They have comprehended the significance of this sentence.
- In fact, Jesus did descend to hell, which is defined as the abode of the dead, not as the region of perpetual torment, in the Greek language.
How Should Christians Respond to This?
There are numerous possible responses to this topic, and each answer will be shaped by the individual’s viewpoint.The fact that Christians do not live in Greek culture makes it difficult for them to understand what is meant by this remark.They are unable to communicate in Greek.We just do not understand what some terms in Greek mean.Our answer should be to devote the necessary time to studying the Scriptures.
- Investigate the Biblical languages in greater depth.
- Inquire of your pastor or a fellow believer in Christ about anything.
- This will assist you in comprehending and processing something that is genuinely beyond the grasp of our human minds.
- According to John Jones of the First Presbyterian Church, ″no confessional declaration should be confirmed unless the affirmer understands what the statement entails.″ According to its appropriate interpretation, the Apostles’ Creed expresses a fundamental theological truth.″ It has been suggested that the Apostles Creed contains a sentence that is problematic among certain Christians.
- The key to comprehending this statement is to be familiar with the meaning of the terms.
Before taking a position on anything, we must first conduct thorough research.When it came to atonement, Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice.He was executed by hanging on a cross.
- He did really die and pass into the realm of the dead.
- The brilliance of this is that he did not remain in that location.
- He climbed to his feet once again and will return.
Millard J.Erickson’s ″Introducing Christian Doctrine″ was published in 1992 by Baker Publishing Group in Grand Rapids, Michigan.″The Veil Was Torn in Two,″ by Daniel M.Guertner, is available online.Having a strong desire for God.
- The 19th of April, 2019.
- (Retrieved on March 4, 2020) .
- Kenneth S.
- Wuest’s Word Studies in the Greek New Testament is available online.
B.Eerdmans Publishing Company, Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1973.Credit for the image: Getty Images/nu1983 Homeschooling her two children while also serving with her husband as he pastors a rural church in West Virginia is what Ashley Hooker does in her spare time.
- She is also a freelance writer who writes on faith.
- Currently, she works as a contributing author for the Journey Christian magazine in the United States.
- When Hurricanes Katrina and Harvey wreaked havoc on the United States, she traveled to Mississippi and Texas with the North Carolina Baptist Men’s Missionary Society.
- For many years, she participated on numerous committees in her local church, with a particular emphasis on evangelism.
- She also traveled to West Virginia and Vermont to share the Gospel with others.
- Her desire is to spend her time writing and spreading the love of Christ to everyone she comes into contact with.
He Descended into Hell, or Did He?
The Apostles’ Creed is one of the oldest ancient confessions of the Christian faith.To this day, it is still in use by a large number of Protestant groups as well as the Roman Catholic Church, among others.In spite of this, it has a particular phrase that has sparked much dispute throughout history.The creed is as follows: I believe in God the Father Almighty, the Almighty Creator of heaven and earth, and I believe in the Holy Spirit.I believe in Jesus Christ, God’s only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary, as revealed in the Bible.
- He was crucified, killed, and was buried as a result of his ordeal under Pontius Pilate.
- He was sent into the depths of hell.
- He resurrected from the dead for the third time on the third day.
- He has climbed to the throne of God the Father Almighty and is now sitting at the right hand of the Almighty.
- He will travel to that location in order to judge the living and the dead.
For the sake of my own salvation, I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Holy Catholic (or Universal) Church, the communion of saints, the forgiving of sins, the resurrection of the body, and a hereafter in which we will live forever.Amen.It is the statement ″he fell to hell″ that has been the source of ongoing debate in the church for centuries.
- In the days after his death on Friday and resurrection on Sunday, what happened to Jesus is unclear.
- Is it possible that he truly went to hell?
- If not, where did he disappear to?
- Let’s take a look at this crucial and intriguing issue in further detail.
- Understanding the Terminology Used in the Bible Regarding the Afterlife First and foremost, some crucial subtlety is required.
- When the question ″Did Jesus genuinely fall into hell?″ is posed, we must first clarify the concepts used in the discussion.
- Unless we are referring to the land of agony where people who are not in Christ go to face God’s anger in the intermediate state and then for all eternity, the answer is no.
- Jesus didn’t go to that place.
- Hell, on the other hand, had a different connotation in the ancient world, and the Latin word for ″hell″ meant something along the lines of ″the place of the dead.″ Ancient peoples, including Jews and early Christians, held that after death, your body was buried or otherwise disposed of, and your spirit was transported to a place of rest.
- As a result, when early Christian writers wrote things like ″He went to hell″ or ″He descended to the dead,″ they were referring to this.
- They were implying that Jesus died in the same way that all human people do.
- His body was laid to rest, and his spirit was transported to the land of the dead.
- The New Testament makes use of a variety of phrases to allude to the location where the dead are interred—what we would refer to as ″the intermediate state.″ The phrase ″hell″ is sometimes used in a broad sense, referring to the location where everyone’s soul goes after they die, without distinguishing between virtuous and sinful people.
- One such phrase is ″the abyss,″ which appears in Romans 10:7.
- However, in other instances, the New Testament makes use of special terminology.
- ″Paradise,″ for example, is a representation of the last resting place of the virtuous dead.
- In Luke 16, the word ″Abraham’s bosom″ is used to refer to Abraham’s breast.
- Then there are words like as ″Gehenna″ and ″Hades,″ which relate to the location where the unrighteous dead are buried.
- Essentially, the Old and New Testaments both teach that there is one place of the dead that is separated into two compartments: the virtuous compartment (e.g., paradise, Abraham’s bosom, etc.) and the wicked compartment (e.g., hell, the lake of fire, etc).
- Gehenna, Hades, Sheol, etc.).
What Do You Think of 1 Peter 3?For the purpose of considering Jesus’ descent, we must now analyze 1 Peter 3:18–22, a scripture that not only provides valuable insight into this topic but has also been a source of much debate throughout church history.The text reads as follows: For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, in order that he might reconcile us to God, having been put to death in the flesh but raised to life in the spirit, in which he went and proclaimed to the spirits in prison, because they had previously refused to obey, when God’s patience waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, namely, eight persons, were brought safely through water…Because of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, who has ascended into heaven and is sitting at the right hand of the Father, with angels, authorities, and powers subjected to him, baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the power of the Holy Spirit.This scripture, I believe, is quite straightforward in that it discusses what occurred to Jesus between his death and resurrection.
Jesus’ descent is mentioned here, but Peter also speaks about the entire path of Christ’s obedience—his life, death, and resurrection—in this passage.That is, until you come across the words, ″in the spirit, in which he went and declared to the spirits in jail.″ However, some translators have interpreted it differently, and I believe it is referring to Jesus’ activities between his death and resurrection.If you take that term to apply to the time period between Christ’s death and resurrection, it refers to the time when Christ went out and ″announced″ his triumph over Satan, death, and all evil, which was accomplished via his substitutionary death.
- The following is his pronouncement of triumph for the righteous dead.
- At one point during the fall, it’s almost as if Jesus is shouting, ″Hey everybody, I won!″ and proclaiming his victory to everyone there in the land of the dead.
- Take note that the underworld, also known as the land of the dead, was not only regarded as the residence of the dead, but was also regarded as the residence of Satan and bad angels in ancient times.
- In 1 Peter 3, he is preaching it to people who live under the surface of the earth.
Afterwards, in the words of Philippians 2:10–11, Christ will announce his triumph to those on the earth following his resurrection, and subsequently to those in heaven following his ascension.At the end of both 1 Peter 3 and Philippians 2, we see that he is being recognized as Lord by all people in heaven, on earth, and under earth—that is, the place where the dead are interred.In a narrative sense, I don’t believe Philippians 2 is alluding to the descent, but I do believe it substantiates the concept that Jesus’ triumph has been announced not only to people who are living today, but also to those in heaven (i.e., the angels) and to those who are under the ground.Jesus is referred to as ″King″ in that country as well.
- The account in 1 Peter 3 explains how this occurred.
- What makes Jesus the King that he is?
- He got down to the ground and declared his victory there.
- Author Michael Heiser makes an interesting case in his book The Unseen Realm (which I don’t agree with in its whole) that this land of the dead is, in fact, the kingdom of the serpent as described in the Old Testament.
- During his ascension, Jesus kicked down the gates of the kingdom of the serpent, demonstrating that he is also King there.
This is consistent with the narrative of the Old Testament, which states that Yahweh is not just the King of Israel, but also the King of the entire world.God, in the person of Jesus, penetrated even the realm of death and announced his victory as he descended into the depths of the earth.What We Stand to Lose if We Don’t Take the Descent In my opinion, there are numerous fundamental systematic doctrinal reasons why we must affirm Jesus’ descent after his execution, all of which are presented in the Bible.The most important reason is that it provides a clear picture of why the old heresy of Apollinarianism is not real.
Apollinarianism holds that when God the Son became incarnate, he simply took on a human body, not a human soul, as is often believed.To put it another way, according to Apollinarian philosophy, Jesus was merely a material creature on earth, in terms of his human nature, during his time here.He was solely aware of his physical body and the procedures by which it functioned throughout that time.And what better theory to use to oppose this error than the concept of Jesus’ descent, which holds that Jesus, according to his human soul, deliberately went to the region of the dead and declared triumph there?In the early church, it was extremely significant in terms of its significance.
According to my research, the emphasis placed on the descending clause in successive revisions of the Apostles’ Creed may have been due to the church’s ardent opposition to Apollinarianism at the time.As an added bonus, when addressing Jesus’ descent, the early church stressed something we had already discussed: that Jesus is King over everything, including the realm of death.As a result, it is significant in terms of soteriology.
The fact that Jesus came down to earth tells us something about the atoning work he performed for our redemption.During his ascension, Jesus was victorious over the dominion of the adversary.The reason for this was because of the labor he had previously completed on the cross.
- In his slide, he wasn’t attempting anything novel.
- instead of doing anything new, he was taking what he had previously done and applying it to the domain of the dead Death has no power over the righteous because Jesus has already died the death we deserved for our sins—on the cross, in penal substitution—and therefore death has no power over us.
- In the face of death and the world of the dead, he has achieved victory by his death on the cross.
- The idea of Jesus’ descent argues that his most important deed in redemption was to offer himself as a substitute for sinners during his crucifixion.
- In addition to his victory over death and, thus, his capacity to raise us from the grave and into new life in him, this substitution has a number of other consequences.
- Taking on the Opponents’ Counter-Arguments The notion of Jesus’ descent is not widely accepted in many evangelical communities today.
In many cases, the arguments opposing this belief are based on statements made by Jesus at his crucifixion.Let’s take a quick look at what they are.First and foremost, in John 19:30, Jesus declares, ″It is finished.″ This was right before he was killed.
- It has been argued that, if Jesus’ mission of salvation was truly completed, why did he need to descend into a land of resurrected bodies?
- When Jesus st