DEFINITION OF THE DAY “HADES”

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      HADES- (Ha’ dez)- The Greek noun hades is used 61 times in the Greek OT (Septuagint) to translate the Hebrew term she’ ol, which refers to the grave or the realm of the dead (Gen 37:35; 1 Sam 2:6; Prov 15:24; cp Ps 16:10 and Acts 2:27, 31). Although the biblical writers were familiar with pagan concepts of a realm of departed spirits ruled by a deity (the meaning of hades in pagan Greek literature), and they occasionally alluded to such ideas, this concept is not taught in Scripture. The picture generally presented by Sheol is the tomb, where the bodies of the dead lie in silence.

Hades in the NT, on the other hand, can represent a place of torment for the wicked, Jesus uses the term in this way in His condemnation of Capernaum in Matt 11:23 (parallel Luke 10:15) and in the parable of the rich man and Lazarus in Luke 16:23 where the rich man is said to be “in torment in Hades. ” When the term hades is used as the equivalent of the Hebrew she’ ol, as it is in Acts 2:27, 31 where Peter is quoting from Ps 16:8-11, it refers simply to the grave. This is probably also the case in Rev 20:13-14 whether the resurrection there includes only the wicked or also the righteous.

Old Testament teaching on the afterlife is less clear than in the NT (see Gen 5:24; 1 Sam 2:6; 2 Kings 2:11; Job 19:25-27; Pss 16:8-11; 17:15; 49:15; 71:20; Eccles 12:7; Dan 122; Hos 13:14). However, the NT is clear not only that there is a bodily resurrection (John 11:24-25; Rom 6:5; 8:11; 1 Cor 15:20-21) but that the believer who dies goes immediately to the Lord (Luke 23:43; 2 Cor 5:1-8; Phil 1:21-23).

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