Matthew 8:12: "But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer
Matthew 22:13: "...take him away, and cast him into outer
Matthew 25:30: "And cast ye the
unprofitable servant into outer darkness..."
Torturing prisoners with sulphur:
Revelation 14:10: "...and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the
Lamb." The "Lamb" here refers to Jesus. It is not
clear whether Jesus and the angels are present as torturers or
merely as observers.
Worms -- apparently flesh-eating:
Mark 9:44-48: "Where their worm dieth
not..." The immortal worm is repeated three times in this
passage for emphasis. One point of interest is that the author of
Mark refers to "their worm" not to "the
worms." That seems to imply that each prisoner has his own worm.
Luke 16:23-26: "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
Prisoner's reaction to the torment:
Matthew 8:12: "...there shall be weeping and gnashing of
Matthew 13:42: "... there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth."
Matthew 13:50: " there shall be wailing and gnashing of
Matthew 25:30: "... there shall be weeping and gnashing of
The punishment in Hell lasts forever:
The torment is apparently for all eternity; it never ceases:
Matthew 25:46: " And these shall go away into everlasting
Mark 9:43-48: "...it is better for thee to enter into life maimed, than having two hands to go into hell, into the fire that never shall be
quenched" The unquenched fire is mentioned three times in this
passage for emphasis.
Revelation 14:11: " And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor
A Roman Catholic children's booklet on Hell:
Various faith groups within Christianity embellished the
descriptions of Hell that appear in the Bible. Starting in the mid-1850's
the Roman Catholic church distributed a fear-based booklet written by Fr. John
Furniss called "The sight of Hell." It was intended to
educate and motivate children in Ireland and England. William Meagher, the
Vicar General in Dublin wrote an approbation, saying that he found that
the booklet had "a great deal to charm, instruct, and edify our
youthful classes, for whose benefit it has been written." Some of
Fr. Furniss' thoughts are listed below. 1 Remember that
this booklet was written for children!. Today, many would regard exposing this material to children would be a form of child abuse:
Hell is located in the center of the earth, 4,000
miles from the surface.
"Millions on millions are shut up there. They
are tormented with the most frightful pains. These dreadful pains make
There is "an upper hell, and a middle hell,
and a lower hell." Punishments became progressively more
horrendous as one descends.
"...torrents, not of rain, but of fire and
brimstone, are rained down."
"...hell is filled with sulfur and smoke...
they are stifled and choked each moment..."
"There is in hell a sound like that of many
waters...It is the sound of oceans of tears running from the countless
millions of eyes. They cry night and day."
"...the devil is king of hell, he is also
"The prison of each soul is different,
according to its sins."
"The [devil's] first stroke will make your
body as bad as the body of Job, covered from head to foot with sores
and ulcers. The second stroke will make your body twice as bad as the
body of Job...How then will your body be after the devil has been
striking it every moment for a hundred million of years without
"The sinner lies chained down on a bed of red-hot blazing fire!"
"How will you feel in hell, when millions of...[flesh-eating
worms] make their dwelling-place in your mouth, and ears, and eyes,
and creep all over you, and sting you with their deadly stings through
Various inmates, little boys, girls, teenagers, and
are forced to wear a dress made of fire,
are trapped in a burning coffin,
are forced to stand on a red-hot floor,
suffer from blood boiling in their veins, or
are trapped in a red-hot oven.
"A mortal sin of one moment deserves the
everlasting pains of hell." That is, eternal torture in Hell
is a reasonable punishment for a single brief indiscretion lasting
only a brief instant on earth.
Versions of Hell in non-Christian religions:
Shelby Hoebee, an undergraduate at Arizona State University studying psychology and medicinal biochemistry, described concepts of Hell taught by non-Christian religions. Some are:
Niflheim is described in ancient Norse and Germanic religions. It is a cold world of ice and snow, ruled by Hel -- from which the English word "Hell" was derived. A giant snake feeds on the dead. People in Niflheim are in constant pain.
Tuonela is a gloomier version of Earth found in pre-Christian Finland. Unlike most places for the dead, this one allows visitors.
The House of Lies is the Zoroastrian version of Hell. After death, each person is brought to the Chinavat Bridge where they are judged on the basis of their good and bad works while on earth. If they fail the test, the bridge turns, dumping the person into a demon-filled pit. Here, they are continually tortured.
Duat is a Egyptian land of the dead ruled by Osiris, the god of the dead. The mass of each person's heart was compared to that of a feather. Those with heavy hearts received punishments from serpents and devouring demons.
Gehanna was originally the name of a garbage dump outside Jerusalem which was continuously burning. Followers of the god Moloch were said to perform human sacrifices there. It became interpreted as the Hebrew version of Hell where evil people were punished for their sins.
Hades is described in ancient Greek and Roman religions where the dead were housed. Tartaros is a deep black dungeon that is part of Hades, and is full of sinners who being tortured.
Naraka is temporary version of Hell taught by some branches of Buddhisn, Hinduism, Jainism and Sikhism. Here, the dead pay for their sins during life. After they are sufficiently punished -- perhaps after billions of years -- they are reborn.
Diyu is a version of Hell conceived by traditional Chinese culture. It is composed of multiple levels with such descriptive names as: the Chamber of Tongue Ripping, the Chamber of Scissors, the Chamber of Steamer, the Cauldron of Boiling Oil, the Chamber of Dismemberment, the Mountain of Flames, etc. 2