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The Lord Jesus described this as "the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels."
Few issues
are more misrepresented in the history of Christianity than this!
Matthew 25:42.
In short:   the devil/Satan does not live there;   he has no authority there;   he has never been there – . . .yet!
to Hell in the Bible, depending upon the translation, should be of the New Testament word gehenna (γεεννα) metaphorically, from the Valley of Hinnom, where the trash of Jerusalem was burnt at that time. But this did not mean that humans condemned to that eternity are 'trash' in God's sight.
When the Bible says that – "God so loved the world/κόσμος/kosmos/all humanity..." – it remains true forever!
John 3:16.
The reality
of human existence, as made to represent God to His creation ("in His image") and therefore given authority, is that responsibility has accountability/consequences, and so to be out-of-gear/out-of-tune with the root of all existence (God Himself) and yet still in His direct/immediate unrestrained presence, is to experience an infinite contradiction and therefore an infinite level of pain, which defies description. . .
Therefore justly, God in His continuing love limits this to the personal level of an individual's failed direct human responsibility, which failure the individual has withheld from the substitutionary atonement of God Himself in Christ
by which any sinner is covered by the moral competence of Christ and so blessed accordingly.
Death ends volitional opportunity (choice); and, suffering does not change moral character; – so there is no purgatory!
older translations of the Bible translated both the Old Testament word she'ôl (שׁאול), and New Testament word hades (ᾅδης), as 'hell', when they both simply mean the place of the deceased (realm of the dead), and have no direct reference to any judgment of God such as the word 'hell' has, unless death itself is seen as judgment, as it sometimes can be.
Before the resurrection of Jesus, all the dead, righteous and unrighteous, waited there in Hades/She'ôl outside of any time-consciousness, but separated from each other with no possibility of transfer between, as Jesus Himself described (Luke 16:26).
This changed when the righteous dead of all generations entered the direct presence of God with Jesus Himself at His resurrection (Ephesians 2:5-6; 4:8).
(Between appearing to Mary Magdalene and later to His disciples in their Upper Room).
The Term:
The Bible's word for Hell is primarily a New Testament word (γέεννα/gheh'-en-nah)
derived from the Hebrew Ge-Hinnom arising from Israel's history of disobedience.
It comes
from the name of a valley ('valley of the son of Hinnom', 2 Chronicles 28:3) where certain kings of Judah re-instituted human sacrifice as had been practiced by the Canaanites before them, primarily of infant children, and was part of the Baal religious practice imported later from Phoenicia.
Among other, in the days of the prophet Isaiah it is written that king Ahaz of Judah –
"made offerings in the Valley of the son of Hinnom and burned his sons as an offering,
according to the abominations of the nations whom the LORD drove out before the people of Israel"
The horror of those acts, and the rightful judgment of God upon Jerusalem for it, made the place itself to be associated with absolute repugnance and so it became the refuse/garbage dump for the city of Jerusalem, and so a place which was always smouldering and where worms fed on carcasses, hence the metaphorical description of Hell as being where the worms never die and the fire does not go out.
2 Chronicles 28:3

Human Sacrifice
Infant Sacrifice.

Mark 9:48.
The term is thus a metaphor for the destiny of the worst kind.  
The statement of Jesus quoted under the article heading above is very significant.
  Why does God not simply blot Satan out of existence, and all his evil emissaries?  
God is absolutely just. Therefore recognition of differences-of-degree, in responsibility for actions, is necessarily part of His absolute justice.
In other words, God is fair; even to Satan and to every one of his servants. They were not made evil. They chose against the intrinsic character of the Creator, which is love, and in varying degrees gave themselves to damage, to deceive, and to destroy that which is good for their own perceived benefit.
Jesus referred to it as "the hell of fire" ('γεενναν του πυρος', Matt.5:22), "eternal fire" ('πυρ το αιωνιον', Matthew 18:8), and also quotes Isaiah (66:24) in describing Hell as "where their worm does not die and the fire is not quenched" (Mark 9:48).
In fact Jesus told us more about it than any other single source.
Both 'worm' and 'fire' are metaphors as much as the term gehenna itself. The rubbish dump of the city was a place where fire always smouldered in its refuse/garbage and worms (the larvae of flies) constantly fed upon the corpses of dead animals and other decaying matter. This unpleasant image is used by Jesus to express the inexpressible –
the eternal destination of those who have not only violated the essential character of God
but have despised His mercy available to all those who turn away from evil (repent).
Satan and his angels are the most obvious illustration of the future occupants of this state, because their choice to do evil was then unprecedented and in full knowledge of the character of what they were choosing to do, by contrast with their Creator whom they knew directly.
Apostle Paul, previously a persecutor of the Christian Church, states –
"I received mercy because I had acted ignorantly in unbelief".
Even in human society, ignorance is viewed judicially as a mitigating factor in guilt for a crime.

1 Timothy 1:13.
Satan and his hordes had no ignorance of any kind, for as part of God's administration of the universe they saw from God's angle of view, a morally unpolluted universe in the beginning, and also the quality of His divine character which they were directly setting themselves up to contradict. Repentance means to turn from the character of the act, not to simply regret it because of the consequence of being accountable.
Therefore for them there is no repentance because their own fully deliberate choice so hardened them against any wish/desire to ever repent.
repentance is not a fear of Hell. True repentance is not a desire to escape the consequences of one's actions.
True repentance abhors the deed committed because of the nature of the deed!
Fear of personal consequence, or social embarrassment and shame, may awaken conscience to focus on repentance, but it cannot take the place of personal repentance.
Apologising because someone has been caught out is not repentance, It does not change the direction of the inner person, as true repentance does. Preachers need to remember this. Fear of Hell does not motivate salvation. Fear of consequences may cause a person to reconsider their situation, but beyond repentance
their salvation is based on faith in God beyond themselves, and not on self-preservation.
beyond limit is available for the truly repentant, for those who hearts agree with God concerning the nature of their actions and the state in which it has left them.
For this reason, from before the beginning of creation the Creator was Himself willing to pay the price of justice for the truly repentant.
For this reason, Jesus Christ is described in the concluding book of the Bible as the Lamb of God
who was slain "from the foundation of the world" (Revelation 13:8).
"For God so loved the world [kosmos], that He gave His only Son,
that whoever believes/trusts in Him should not perish but have eternal life."
John 3:16.
What about those who have never heard the Christian gospel? Salvation is not derived from doctrine about Jesus. That is simply as 'scaffolding' for our faith/trust response toward God.
Salvation is derived from a personal positive response to God Himself, no matter what name or term is used for God!
God is to be trusted!
He who Himself paid the price for all sin is to be completely trusted with the eternal welfare of those whom we think have never heard the gospel as we understand it. If we love them, He who loves them more will open a way for us to reach out to them if there is a need.
Missionary outreach
is to be based on love
not on
rescue desperation.
He, who is absolutely just, is beyond measure in His compassion, and seeks no self-satisfaction in His judgement, but –
to be in His immediate presence unrepentant from that which we know is wrong (in conflict with His character)
is pain beyond measure, as infinite as the character contradicted by one's personal condition,
so therefore His judgement mitigates that infinite agony according to the real personal responsibility of each individual.
He is to be trusted!

Ultimate Discomfort!

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