can people in hell repent and turn to God

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posthuman

Senior Member
Jul 31, 2013
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i think this is a really great question :)

the only thing that I can think of that could prevent the entire population of hell from repenting is by the taking away of their free will

but I don't see how you could reconcile that with the character of God ???
i think that if we answer the related question, "what will keep us from sinning in heaven?" that will give us the solution to your question.


so we'll be with Him in eternity. what's to stop us from rebelling, as Satan did, and rejecting Him?
 

throughfaith

Well-known member
Aug 4, 2020
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That means Jesus died and then His living Spirit went to preach to those in prison before resurrecting. They were given the gospel and you can't have the complete gospel message without the crucifixion. Next Jesus resurrected.

In John 5:25-29 says the bad and the good, the dead and the living, will be resurrected and judged. So death, resurrection, then judgment? Then there is a delay between death and judgement. The important question here is where are these deceased people waiting before the resurrection?

This infers that there is a prison in the afterlife and that Jesus can go there, but it isn't identified as hell. However, that does not mean it isn't hell.

It does raise important questions about why someone would be given the gospel after judgement and sentenced to hell.

Therefore, it is logically inconsistent to say the spirits in prison are in hell. This only makes sense pre-judgement in the afterlife. This is where the idea of purgatory comes from.
Your making a doctrine out of a transitional verse . You may as well pick any verse and apply it for today .
 

Runningman

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Mar 4, 2020
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Your making a doctrine out of a transitional verse . You may as well pick any verse and apply it for today .
I don't really agree with that either. Like I said at the start, I am not totally sold on the idea of a paradise and prison purgatory even though it's strongly intimated. I just wanted to bounce some ideas off of people. I might make a thread on this later just to get a broader discussion going.
 

1ofthem

Senior Member
Mar 30, 2016
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Again, you're missing the broader context. I didn't include entire context to keep my post as brief as readable as possible. John 5:25-29. It's talking about those who are dead, whether they are righteous or wicked, hearing the voice of Christ, in context of resurrection.
Yes, they are indeed hearing the voice of Christ in resurrection. Isn't this the judgement? Verse 29 seems to be the key.

29 And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.

This is indeed the judgement, scripture goes even further to say that every knee shall bow and every tongue shall confess. We know not all will be saved. So just my thoughts, but seems to be implying that once these folks hear his voice and are resurrected they will be judged for their deeds prior to their death.
I do recall the rich man and Lazarus, but the word of God does not go against itself like you just suggested. The word of God is inerrant, it is peoples' understanding that is often flawed. Reread the verses again and think of how they can both be true. Jesus definitely preached to those who died in their sins, specifically those who died in the flood according to 1 Peter 3:18-20.
I'm not knocking the scripture referring to Lazarus and the rich man...I actually posted about it before anyone else did on here..lol But I've heard some people say that it is just a parable and the main emphasis is that even if one came back from the dead and witnessed to them they wouldn't believe... in reference to Jesus.

Scripture does not contradict itself in anyway so there has to be an explanation to these scriptures. Also many times in scriptures death is referred to as going to sleep in Jesus. Some people believe that once you die you go to sleep awaiting judgement day and others believe you go straight to heaven or hell. I'm not sure either way. That is something that I can say I will probably never know for sure in this life.
 

throughfaith

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Aug 4, 2020
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I don't really agree with that either. Like I said at the start, I am not totally sold on the idea of a paradise and prison purgatory even though it's strongly intimated. I just wanted to bounce some ideas off of people. I might make a thread on this later just to get a broader discussion going.
Its definitely not strongly intimated. This is a slippery slope ,where something is made of a one time occurrence, at a specific time for a specific reason. Where we lose its application in a particular setting and start to apply it as if its a pattern or repeated .
 

kaylagrl

Senior Member
Oct 18, 2014
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i think this is a really great question :)



i think that if we answer the related question, "what will keep us from sinning in heaven?" that will give us the solution to your question.


so we'll be with Him in eternity. what's to stop us from rebelling, as Satan did, and rejecting Him?

Because rebelling is sin and sin can't enter heaven?
 

shittim

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Dec 16, 2016
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Those who say they were taken there briefly report they could not think of God or Christ, it was taken from them that He even be in their thought.
 

Journeyman

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Jan 10, 2019
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the only thing that I can think of that could prevent the entire population of hell from repenting is by the taking away of their free will

but I don't see how you could reconcile that with the character of God ???
The afterlife is where what people did in this world with their free will is shown.

The unsaved will suffer torment by having their sinfulness exposed. Their torment is not endless, but they will be burned up and no longer exist.
 

Lucy-Pevensie

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Dec 20, 2017
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The afterlife is where what people did in this world with their free will is shown.

The unsaved will suffer torment by having their sinfulness exposed. Their torment is not endless, but they will be burned up and no longer exist.
Do you know any verses which state that hell won't be eternal ?
 

TMS

Senior Member
Mar 21, 2015
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“The Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptations and to reserve the unjust
under punishment for the day of judgment” (2 Peter 2:9).
There is not one single soul in hellfire today. The Bible says that God reserves, or holds back, the wicked until the day of judgment to be punished.

“So it will be at the end of this age. The Son of Man will send out His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all things that offend, and those who practice lawlessness, and will cast them into the furnace of fire” (Matthew 13:40–42).
“The word that I have spoken will judge him in the last day” (John 12:48).
The lost will be cast into hellfire at the great judgment at the end of the world—not when they die. God would not punish a person in fire until his or her case was tried and decided in court at the end of the world. Does it make sense that God would burn a murderer who died 5,000 years ago 5,000 years longer than a murderer who dies today and deserves the same punishment for the same sin?

“The hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice and come forth—those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation” (John 5:28, 29).
“That the wicked is reserved to the day of destruction? … Yet shall he be brought to the grave, and shall remain in the tomb” (Job 21:30, 32 KJV).
The Bible is specific. Both the unsaved and the saved who have died are in their graves “sleeping” until the resurrection day.

This explains how the unsaved don't sit in hell without a free will. They don't think at all because they are waiting for the judgement.
 

TMS

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Mar 21, 2015
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The wages for (or the result of) sin is death, not everlasting life in hellfire. The wicked “perish,” or receive “death.” The righteous receive “everlasting life.
“The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23).
“Sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death” (James 1:15).
“God … gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).

The wicked are not gifted eternal life.
the wicked do not live for ever, death = death not life in hell.
 

TMS

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Mar 21, 2015
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“The cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death” (Revelation 21:8).

The wicked die the second death in hellfire. If the wicked lived forever being tortured in hell, they would be immortal. But this is impossible because the Bible says God “alone has immortality” (1 Timothy 6:16). When Adam and Eve were driven from the Garden of Eden, an angel was posted to guard the tree of life so that sinners would not eat of the tree and “live forever” (Genesis 3:22–24). The teaching that sinners are immortal in hell originated with Satan and is completely untrue. God prevented this when sin entered this earth by guarding the tree of life.

“So it will be at the end of this age. The Son of Man will send out His angels, and they will ... cast them into the furnace of fire” (Matthew 13:40–42).
“They went up on the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city. And fire came down from God out of heaven and devoured them” (Revelation 20:9).
“If the righteous will be recompensed on the earth, how much more the ungodly and the sinner” (Proverbs 11:31).

The Bible says that God will kindle hellfire. After the holy city comes down out of heaven (Revelation 21:2), the wicked will attempt to capture it. At that time, God will rain down fire from heaven upon the earth, and it will devour the wicked. This fire is Bible hellfire.
 

1ofthem

Senior Member
Mar 30, 2016
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“The cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death” (Revelation 21:8).

The wicked die the second death in hellfire. If the wicked lived forever being tortured in hell, they would be immortal. But this is impossible because the Bible says God “alone has immortality” (1 Timothy 6:16). When Adam and Eve were driven from the Garden of Eden, an angel was posted to guard the tree of life so that sinners would not eat of the tree and “live forever” (Genesis 3:22–24). The teaching that sinners are immortal in hell originated with Satan and is completely untrue. God prevented this when sin entered this earth by guarding the tree of life.

“So it will be at the end of this age. The Son of Man will send out His angels, and they will ... cast them into the furnace of fire” (Matthew 13:40–42).
“They went up on the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city. And fire came down from God out of heaven and devoured them” (Revelation 20:9).
“If the righteous will be recompensed on the earth, how much more the ungodly and the sinner” (Proverbs 11:31).

The Bible says that God will kindle hellfire. After the holy city comes down out of heaven (Revelation 21:2), the wicked will attempt to capture it. At that time, God will rain down fire from heaven upon the earth, and it will devour the wicked. This fire is Bible hellfire.
Many scriptures suggest other wise. In many scriptures hell is referred to as eternal fire, eternal damnation, everlasting punishment, where the worm dieth not etc..

https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/...tional-verses-for-eternal-punishment-in-hell/

Here is a link to ten of the verses that speak about eternal punishment.
 

TMS

Senior Member
Mar 21, 2015
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“He will reward each according to his works” (Matthew 16:27).
“That servant who knew his master’s will, and did not ... do according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes. But he who did not know, yet committed things deserving of stripes, shall be beaten with few” (Luke 12:47, 48).

The Bible does not tell us how long the wicked will be punished before receiving death in the fire. God does specifically state, however, that all will be punished according to their deeds. This means some will receive longer punishment than others, based upon their works.
If God makes someone burn for 1000 years because they were bad for 70 years, i can't call God just or fair or loving.

“Behold, they shall be as stubble, the fire shall burn them; they shall not deliver themselves from the power of the flame; it shall not be a coal to be warmed by, nor a fire to sit before!” (Isaiah 47:14).
“I saw a new heaven and a new earth. ... And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away” (Revelation 21:1, 4).
Mal 4:1 For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the LORD of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch.
Mal 4:2 But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall.
Mal 4:3 And ye shall tread down the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I shall do this, saith the LORD of hosts.

The Bible specifically teaches that hellfire will go out—that there will not be left “a coal to be warmed by, nor a fire to sit before.” they shall be burned up. The Bible also says that in God’s new kingdom all “former things” will have passed away. Hell, being one of the former things, is included, so we have God’s promise that it will be abolished.

If God tortured His enemies in a fiery horror chamber throughout eternity, He would be more vicious and heartless than men have ever been in the worst of war atrocities. An eternal hell of torment would be hell for God also, who loves even the vilest sinner.

"Everlasting, not be quenched, eternal fire." These need to be look at carefully.

A few examples ......
Jud 1:7 Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.
Sodom is not burning today. The eternal part is Gods power and the everlasting effect.
2Pe 2:6 And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly;
If that is the example of what happens to the ungodly they were consumed.

Mat 25:46 And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.
Everlasting punishment. Does this mean burning alive forever, or everlasting destruction, Death forever.
life eternal is only for the righteous. Death is for the wicked.

Phm 1:15 For perhaps he therefore departed for a season, that thou shouldest receive him for ever;
for ever.... Onesimus is not received by Philemon today, He was not his servant after death.

Jon 2:6 I went down to the bottoms of the mountains; the earth with her bars was about me for ever: yet hast thou brought up my life from corruption, O LORD my God.
for ever..... Jonah wasn't in the water or the Whale for ever.

Hell is not for ever.
 

Lucy-Pevensie

Senior Member
Dec 20, 2017
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Jon 2:6 I went down to the bottoms of the mountains; the earth with her bars was about me for ever: yet hast thou brought up my life from corruption, O LORD my God.
for ever..... Jonah wasn't in the water or the Whale for ever.

Hell is not for ever.
This is a Messianic prophecy. Jesus was not in the grave or in hell forever. The Psalms have many corresponding prophecies about Messiah overcoming death & the grave. It's a prophetic theme throughout scripture.

It can't be applied to the eternal fate of the unsaved.
 

TMS

Senior Member
Mar 21, 2015
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death is for ever and hell means death.

31 times HELL is mentioned in the old testament, and in each instance it comes from the Hebrew word SHEOL which means grave.
Hell = grave....
in the New testament 11 times when hell is used it comes from the Greek word HADES which means grave.
Hell = grave..
Psa 16:10 For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.
Act 2:27 Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.
look up the Greek and Hebrew..
12 times in the new testament hell comes from the Greek word Gehenna, a transliteration of the "valley of Hinnom". just outside Jerusalem.
This was the place of punishment for the Jews and Jesus used this as an illustration of the way people would be punished at the end.
It was the city incinerator, in history divine judgement fell on the idols and idolatrous people, and what the flames didn't destroy the worms did. Skolex = maggots, the worms that didn't die....
Hell = Valley of Hinnom which was an incinerator to destroy.