What is Tartarus?

According to ancient Greek mythology, Tartarus was a low place, possibly underground, of torturous existence where the wicked are sent to suffer. Tartarus was a place for horrible monsters and the vilest criminals.

The Greek word Tartarus is used once in Scripture, in 2 Peter 2:4: "For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to chains of gloomy darkness to be kept until the judgment." The word "hell" here is translated from the word Tartarus.

Sinning angels are mentioned in Genesis 6:1–4 where they were called "sons of God" and they took advantage of human women and their offspring. Jude 1:6 describes: "And the angels who did not stay within their own position of authority, but left their proper dwelling, he has kept in eternal chains under gloomy darkness until the judgment of the great day." These are believed to be the "spirits in prison" to whom Jesus proclaimed in 1 Peter 3:19–20. Evidently these particular fallen angels are in Tartarus, which is what it seems other demons feared in Luke 8:31.

When Peter mentioned Tartarus, he was condemning false teachers who intentionally impart heresy into the church. He provides several historical references of God's actions and says that " … the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment until the day of judgment" (2 Peter 2:9). God does not take lightly those who would intentionally lead His children astray (Matthew 18:6).

Related Truth:

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

Is paradise the same thing as heaven? What is paradise?

Gehenna – What is it?

What happens after death?

How can I be sure that when I die I will go to heaven?

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