Does hell exist?

It is unbiblical to accept the reality of heaven while rejecting the reality of hell. Both are places of conscious eternal existence, according to the Scriptures (Revelation 20:14–15; 21:1–12). [Please note that in this article we use the term "hell" to refer broadly to the place of conscious eternal torment. Other articles explain the technical differences between the terms the Bible uses to discuss the afterlife.]

Jesus confronted people with hell and the danger of spending eternity there more than He described heaven. However, there are few details about hell in the Bible. It was created for demonic beings initially (Matthew 25:41). Three Gospels describe hell as a place of burning (Matthew 18:9; Mark 9:43; Luke 16:24). It is also described as dark (Matthew 22:13), full of grief (Matthew 8:12), and a place of continual anguish (Mark 9:48).

Throughout the ages, leaders and others have dismissed hell due to the difficultly of imagining an eternal place of punishment. It is much easier to focus on a lovely eternity of goodness. But the fact that many do not want to accept the reality of hell does not make it any less real.

Others have found it difficult to accept the reality of hell due to unbiblical depictions of hell, such as it being an underground fire with demons tormenting people with pitchforks and such. This is not the picture of hell painted by the Bible. Hell is certainly a terrible place. It is a place away from God. It is a place of punishment. It is a place of eternal existence for those who refuse salvation through Jesus Christ.

Imagine a place that is worse than losing your sight, or your limbs. Matthew 5:29–30 uses just that image to emphasize how much we should want to avoid hell. "If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body go into hell."

Thankfully, those who put their faith in Jesus as God's only Son, who He died on the cross for our sins, and was resurrected in power over death, don't have to face an eternity in hell (John 3:16–18). If you are uncertain how to receive salvation in Jesus, please look at the article here.


Related Truth:

Does heaven exist?

Is hell real? Is hell really forever?

What are the distinctions among sheol, hades, hell, the lake of fire, paradise, and Abraham's bosom?

What does the Bible say about God's judgment of us in the afterlife?

How can I be saved?


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