Risen from the Dust
We know that heaven and hell are real places, and not simply states of mind, but are they physically tangible? In the scriptures, hell is often described as being underground, within the depths of the earth, and heaven is often described as being skyward or above us, "But those that seek my soul, to destroy it, shall go into the lower parts of the earth" (Psalm 63.9 KJV), "Though they dig into hell, thence shall mine hand take them; though they climb up to heaven, thence will I bring them down" (Amos 9.2 KJV bible). Does this mean that if we drill a hole deep enough into the ground we will eventually reach hell, and if we look far enough into outer space we will find heaven? Aside from the prevailing objection of common sense, such a literal interpretation is not supported by the scriptures either.
To help answer this question, consider the depiction of heaven and hell given in Luke 16, "And in hell [Hades] he [the rich man] lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame. But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented. And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence" (Luke 16.24-6 KJV bible). The rich man not only sees Lazarus with Abraham, but proceeds to communicate with Abraham. Abraham then explains to the rich man that there is an impassable gulf or chasm that separates the two sides, Paradise and Hades, from each other. Therefore, Lazarus cannot cross over to the rich man's side, and the rich man cannot cross over to Lazarus' side.
Now if heaven is in outer space, and hell is deep underground, then the two would be separated by the earth's crust, and the vast distances of space. If that is the case, then presumably Abraham and the rich man would not be able to see or speak to one another. Then, even if you assume that this conversation takes place in their minds' eye(s), we are still left with the description of a chasm that is quite different from miles and miles of solid rock. So at the very least we should conclude from this account that heaven and hell are on two separate and opposite sides of a spiritual, not physical realm, and that our notions of time and space aren't as relevant there.
Alexander 12 Nov 2012, 20:14Im sorry but one of your facts is very off and i feel the need to point this out. You see, as of that time Lazerus is not in Heaven. The bible states that Abraham's bosom, or paradice, is where he is at. Before Christ was crucified on the cross and payed for our sins, people couldnt go to heaven, their sins were only covered by the animals blood, not washed away as with Jesus's blood when he died for us. So in the Old Testament when people died they went to Abraham's Bosom (Paradice) so this is where Lazerus would have been, since Heaven is a different place. Therefore both Hell and Paradice could be underground, but im not and expert and have no clue about that, but just wanted to point out that Lazerus isn't in Heaven yet.
Doug Buckley 16 Nov 2012, 04:31Hi, please see ch.4 on the right or the "gulf of Hades" article in the articles section for a discussion of this.
ree 21 Mar 2013, 16:16lazaurus was not yet in heaven
Allan Raagas Azura 26 Apr 2013, 05:18In my Bible translation it says that, "The poor man died and was carried by the angels to seat beside Abraham at the FEAST IN HEAVEN." Luke 16:22 TEV. I'm not 100% sure if Lazarus is in Heaven with Jesus (because the Bible gives a little information or details about that matter), BUT all I want to say and I'm sure with it, Abraham and Lazarus is NOT in Hell or Hades. Revelation 20:14 NET says, "Then death and HADES were thrown into the lake of fire..." BUT, in some BIBLE VERSION like TEV, they use "WORLD OF THE DEAD" instead of Hades, what John 3:16 TEV says or promise to us, "... so that everyone who BELIEVES in Him may not DIE but have ETERNAL LIFE."So it means God promise an ETERNAL LIFE for us BELIEVERS in Heaven John 14:1-4 TEV, not eternal life in Hell or Hades because this place is place for the "DEAD".
Doug Buckley 27 Apr 2013, 10:49Hi Allan. Luke 16.22 says in the Greek, ειςG1519 PREP τονG3588 T-ASM κολπονG2859 N-ASM αβρααμG11 N-PRI. Literally "into the bosom (or chest) of Abraham".
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