LITERAL Hellfire Torment—Not A Bible Teaching

NeutralZone Posts: 1
edited June 9 in Bible Questions

The teaching of literal hellfire torment is commonplace in Christendom and non-Christian religions. This teaching defames the Creator and portrays him as a sadist who tortures people in literal flames of fire for all eternity—as punishment for wrongdoings committed during the relatively brief human lifespan.

Hellfire believers insist that the wicked will literally experience pain while burning in literal flames of fire—after they have died. So that brings us to the questions below.



1. Are there are scriptures in the Judeo-Christian Bible to support the teaching of literal hellfire torment? If you believe that to be the case, please quote up to three (3) scriptures and include Bible book, chapter, and verse, along with a brief explanation for why you believe the verses are talking LITERAL hellfire torment.

2. According to those who believe in literal hellfire torment, only wicked people will wind up in hell. Is that what you believe?

3. Does the Bible teach that humans have an immortal soul that survives the death of the person so that the soul can then be burned in eternal flames? If so, please present scriptures to that effect to prove it (no more than 3 scriptures at a time, please). Follow the steps indicated at Question #1.

4.  When people are being tortured in hellfire, wouldn't they have to KNOW or be conscious/aware of the fact that they are being burned? I mean to say, what's the point of punishing people in a burning hellfire if they aren't even aware?

5.    Those who believe in literal eternal torment say that the person's soul is being burned forever. What is the soul? Are animals souls also, or does the term "soul" apply only to humans?


". . . be swift about hearing, slow about speaking, slow about wrath. " (James 1:19)


  • Mark 9:38-30 Lexham English Bible (LEB) =>

    John said to him, “Teacher, we saw someone expelling demons in your name, and we tried to prevent him because he was not following us.”

    But Jesus said, “Do not prevent him, because there is no one who does a miracle in my name and will be able soon afterward to speak evil of me. For whoever is not against us is for us. For whoever gives you a cup of water to drink in my name because you are Christ’s, truly I say to you that he will never lose his reward. 

    “And whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it is better for him if instead a large millstone is placed around his neck and he is thrown into the sea. And if your hand causes you to sin, cut it off! It is better for you to enter into life crippled than, having two hands, to go into hell — into the unquenchable fire! And if your foot causes you to sin, cut it off! It is better for you to enter into life lame than, having two feet, to be thrown into hell! And if your eye causes you to sin, tear it out! It is better for you to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye than, having two eyes, to be thrown into hell, ‘where their worm does not die and the fire is not extinguished.’ For everyone will be salted with fire. Salt is good, but if the salt becomes deprived of its salt content, by what can you make it salty? Have salt among yourselves, and be at peace with one another.” 

     W. Hall Harris III et al., eds., The Lexham English Bible (Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2012), Mk 9:38–50.

    To me, hands & feet show personal choices what to ❤️ love most. Actions speak louder than words.

    Luke 16:14-31 LEB with Luke 16:14-15 pronouns "him" & "he"referring to Jesus =>

    Now the Pharisees, who were lovers of money, heard all these things, and they ridiculed him.

    And he said to them, “You are the ones who justify themselves in the sight of men, but God knows your hearts! For what is considered exalted among men is an abomination in the sight of God. 

    “The law and the prophets were until John; from that time on the kingdom of God has been proclaimed, and everyone is urgently pressed into it. But it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away than for one stroke of a letter of the law to become invalid. 

    “Everyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, and the one who marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery. 

    “Now a certain man was rich, and dressed in purple cloth and fine linen, feasting sumptuously every day.

    And a certain poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores, lay at his gate, and was longing to be filled with what fell from the table of the rich man. But even the dogs came and licked his sores.

    Now it happened that the poor man died, and he was carried away by the angels to Abraham’s side.

    And the rich man also died and was buried.

    And in Hades he lifted up his eyes as he was in torment and saw Abraham from a distance, and Lazarus at his side.

    And he called out and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus so that he could dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am suffering pain in this flame!’

    But Abraham said, ‘Child, remember that you received your good things during your life, and Lazarus likewise bad things. But now he is comforted here, but you are suffering pain. And in addition to all these things, a great chasm has been established between us and you, so that those who want to cross over from here to you are not able to do so, nor can they cross over from there to us.’

    So he said, ‘Then I ask you, father, that you send him to my father’s house, for I have five brothers, so that he could warn them, in order that they also should not come to this place of torment!

    But Abraham said, ‘They have Moses and the prophets; they must listen to them.’

    And he said, ‘No, father Abraham, but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent!

    But he said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be convinced if someone rises from the dead.’ ” 

     W. Hall Harris III et al., eds., The Lexham English Bible (Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2012), Lk 16:14–31.

    My experience with human belief is incredible stubbornness. Personally not aware of any Christian Debate discussion where somebody admitted personal belief change while have often encountered attitude: "I know what I believe, do not confuse me with the facts"

    Love is a choice. Each person has free will choice what to ❤️ love most. My choice is ❤️ Holy יהוה אלהים because eternal Holy יהוה אלהים first ❤️ loved me => provided Holy way of escape from sin punishment. Every creature in Holy Heaven is choosing to ❤️ Holy יהוה אלהים most. I can only imagine living in Holy ❤️ love with everyone as we worship together 🙏

    Immensely Thankful for me asking Holy יהוה אלהים for forgiveness from my sins against Holy יהוה אלהים being instantly forgiven (reason for me to always Keep Smiling 4 Jesus 😍) while my transformation to become Holy as Holy יהוה אלהים is a work in progress that includes יהוה Ruach HaKodesh (יהוה Breath The Holy) continually dwelling in me.

    Keep Smiling 😊

  • Pages
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    Welcome to the forum.

    Given the title used for this thread, and various statements made in your post, it will be correct to believe that you are one who does not consider this "teaching" to be at all biblical. 

    Yet, surprisingly your post is lacking even the briefest background as to why you view this as "Not a Bible Teaching"

    In simple terms, I find the opening remarks you make to be emotion-laced without providing meaningful substance supportive for the assertion of "Not a Bible Teaching"

    Regarding the opening remarks.

    "The teaching of literal hellfire torment is commonplace in Christendom and non-Christian religions."

    And why do you think that is? There is no specific engagement with that in your post.

    "This teaching defames the Creator"

    Indeed, this is your opinion; but, what evidence can you provide in support of that opinion? In other words, what are the specific grounds for the basis of this being slanderous to "the Creator"?

    "and portrays him as a sadist who tortures people"

    A continuation of opinion. According to Ezek. 18:23, 32, 33:11 God does not derive any kind of pleasure, sexual or otherwise, when exercising judgment. 

    Do you have other scripture in mind which you believe addresses that concern directly?

    "in literal flames of fire"

    Is it the word "literal" that you find disagreeable; and, instead prefer a metaphorical sense for "flames of fire", as you state it? Again, the lack of engagement leaves this unknown.

    "for all eternity–"

    Is "eternity" at issue? 

    "as punishment for wrongdoings committed during the relatively brief human lifespan."

    What importance does the length of lifespan for humans play in the administering of final judgment by God?

    "Hellfire believers insist that the wicked will literally experience pain while burning in literal flames of fire—after they have died."

    Do you think this is directly related to certain statements made throughout scripture (cf. Dan. 12:2; Is. 33:14; Mt. 13:42, 50, 18:8, 25:41, 46; Jude 7; Re. 20:10)?  

    Regarding "—after they have died" it is not clear what you were wanting to convey by that. Are you speaking of annihilation?

    As I understand the position­­ with which you consider non-biblical, the unrighteous are alive at the time of their judgment – those who have been raised from the grave, along with those still living at the time of Christ's return (cf. Jn. 5:28-29).

    And, following on that, the literal, or metaphorical, "eternal flames" are not said to consume the unrighteous. It is said to be an "eternal punishment" which is contrasted generally to the righteous receiving "eternal life" (cf. Mt. 25:46). 

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