crazymulgogi at gmail.com
Tue Mar 14 13:04:23 EST 2006
Exactly. "hell" and sheol are two quite different things. In the
Hebrew bible, there is no idea of "heaven or hell", and She'ol is the
place all go when they're dead. It can be translated by "Underworld"
or something, but we can call it She'ol, too. Only in Judaism, so not
in the cultic Israelite religion as far as we can judge reading the
classic corpus of the Hebrew bible, did the idea of heaven or hell
start to develop. After all, "a living dog is better than a dead lion"
Of course, the ideas of heaven, hell, underworld, continue to live on
and they are always mixed up, as good religion must do, without caring
much for "theological system". Therefore, in Judaic and Christian
texts (most interestingly, the pseudepigrapha and the apocryphal
writings), in one and the same text we can find expressed the ideas of
resurrection in a coming era, a straight road to heaven after death,
"astral" immortality, i.e. "the righteous turn into stars after death"
(because their soul shines so strong we can still see them in the
For example, "Life of Adam and Eve; 2Baruch (Syriac), Assumption of Moses, etc.
A common word for "hell" is Gehinnom/Gehenna, the valley of the Molokh
sacrifice, and Gan (garden) for "heaven". Gehinnom, of course, is a
"real place": it's still there, but..
The word "real", however, is always meaningless when applied to ideas
or texts. In religion, things that have meaning are real, things that
do not, disappear. So Sheol is definitely real, according to the
Hebrew text, otherwise we wouldn't have heard of it.
2006/3/14, Alexander Oldernes <alexander at oldernes.no>:
> The Hebrew equivalent of the Greek word hades is $)WL (SHeOL).
> Sheol is continually associated with death and not life. (1Sa 2:6; 2Sa 22:6; Ps 18:4, 5; 49:7-10, 14, 15; 88:2-6; 89:48; Isa 28:15-18; also compare Ps 116:3, 7-10 with 2Co 4:13, 14.)
> Job 10:21 speaks of death as "the land of darkness" and Psalm 115:17 as a place of "silence". Ecclesiastes 9:4-6,10 shows that the dead has no conscious.
> Regarding Sheol, the Encyclopaedia Britannica (1971, Vol. 11, p. 276) noted: "Sheol was located somewhere 'under' the earth. . . . The state of the dead was one of neither pain nor pleasure. Neither reward for the righteous nor punishment for the wicked was associated with Sheol. The good and the bad alike, tyrants and saints, kings and orphans, Israelites and gentiles-all slept together without awareness of one another."
> Since $)WL refers to a common grave for mankind, the word "hell" is not a good translation, since "hell" suggests a contrast with "heaven" as a dwelling-place of the righteous after death.
> When Jonah was in the belly of the fish, he called it "the belly of Sheol" (NJB), since he was as good as dead.
> I haven't found any info about a geographical place named Hades or Sheol, if that is what you are asking about.
> Alexander Oldernes
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: <STORMVOLCANO at aol.com>
> To: <b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org>
> Sent: Tuesday, March 14, 2006 1:17 PM
> Subject: [b-hebrew] hell
> > is hades a real place according to the hebrew text?
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