Do Heaven and Hell Really Exist? Research Paper

Pages: 6 (2045 words)  ·  Style: MLA  ·  Bibliography Sources: 6  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Mythology - Religion

¶ … Heaven and Hell really exist?

The most common question that is often asked by people belonging from different religions is in relation to the reality of the existence of the heaven and hell, the end of the world, the outcomes of the actions of the people in the world and if the world will end. From these questions, the most important one is in relation to the existence of the heaven and hell. This question is the main fact to be considered in this paper. What is the heaven or hell, what is the reason of existence and do these really exist and what kinds of actions will define the final destination of a person. The research paper will argue on the reality and existence of heaven and hell as interpreted with the help of Genesis in the Old Testament. With the help of references taken from the Old Testament, main arguments that will help in building an argument in this paper will include the fate of sinners or pious ones, destination and fate of the soul after the death of a person and what has been mentioned in the Old Testament, kinds and definitions of heaven or hells if mentioned in the Old Testament.

Research Question

The question, which is to be taken into account in the paper, is in relation to the existence and the reality in relation to the presence of heaven and hell. The revelations made in the Genesis in Old Testament will be used in the paper to answer the question.

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Research Paper on Do Heaven and Hell Really Exist? Assignment

One of the most important facts that are often taught by religious organizations, especially the Christian ones, is that after death, good people often are sent to paradise or heaven. The first argument here is in relation to the final destination of the sinners, pious ones, and the souls after death, as highlighted in the Old Testament. It is believed that heaven is a place of uncountable happiness and fulfillment. One of the main religious teachings given to the believers in this case is that paradise or heaven is a place where a person lives happily endlessly. So much is known about the heaven or the paradise, still no one seems to be in a hurry to go there. Death has always been avoided (Madrid 56). Based on this one of the main questions that often come in people's minds is that even if good and righteous people go to heaven, what will the righteous ones do in heaven? Eternity seems to be a long time. What is the main aim of the righteous ones in the heaven? Nevertheless, heaven is not the only one confusion that comes to mind when life after death is considered. What is the fate of the unrighteous believers, wrongdoers and the sinners? Many followers of Christianity believe that the wicked ones belong to hell and will burn in hell. Other than the main concepts of heaven and hell, there are certain lobbies that argue about the presence of immortal soul meaning that every soul lives on the earth for a long time.

"And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good" (Genesis 1:21, King James Version).

One of the most important teachings of the Old Testament is relation to the death of the soul. It has been mentioned in the Genesis,

"God told Adam and Eve, two "living souls," that they would "surely die" if they disobeyed Him" (Genesis 2:17). In addition to this;

"God also told Adam that He had taken him from the dust of the earth and he would return to dust" (Genesis 3:19).

Thereby from here, it can be seen that the belonging of a soul in the heaven or hell has not been mentioned in the Old Testament, but the main fact that has been stressed is the death of the soul.

Nephesh is the main word used in Hebrew language for soul. Strong's Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible argues that the word Nephesh means the breathing creature. It is to be added here that when the word usage is noticed in the Bible, it does not mean a spiritual entity or a spirit within a person. The true meaning is a physical and a living creature. The word in many cases has been referred for humans and animals. One of the main examples in these cases is that of the creation of sea life (Rutherford 89).

Creature is the word translated from the Hebrew word 'nephesh'. One of the main facts that have been highlighted in the bible is that these sea creatures were created before the human beings. The term is often used for the animals and birds at many places in the bible. There are more than 130 places in the Old Testament where the word soul has been used for the human beings. Second chapter of Genesis is the first case where the word has been used for the human beings (Gibbs 85). It can be illustrated with one of the most important verses as follows;

"And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul" (King James Version, verse 7).

In addition to these, translation of Bible highlights that the human being became a living being or a person. The verse given does not mention that Adam was an immortal soul. The only main translation in this case is that the God gave breath of life to Adam and Adam died when this breath left him (Daley 90).

Many verses in the Old Testament mention that the human soul dies after death. God told Adam and Eve, two "living souls," that they would "surely die" if they disobeyed Him (Genesis 2:17). At another place in Genesis, it has been mentioned that God told Adam that He had taken him from the dust of the earth and he would return to dust (Genesis 3:19).

Some of the other plain statements that have mentioned the state of soul at death include Ezekiel 18.4 and 18.20. These verses highlight "the soul who sins shall die." Again, in this case the main word used for the soul is nephesh.

Second important argument is in relation to the definitions of heaven or hell as may have been mentioned in the Old Testament. Many people say that they could find very less definitions in the Christian scriptures. Many literary authors who have mentioned the concept in their writings include Paul Johnson. The British historian has mentioned that a genuine inventiveness that should be a part of the concept of heaven is greatly lacking. Adding, he says that there is no clear definition of heaven, which can be considered as a great hole in the Christian theology. If heaven were the main aim of the true and faithful Christians, there would be a clear explanation in the Word of God. One word that has been used in the bible for true Christians and the believers is 'saved ones'. There is no place in bible where the final dwelling of the Christian believers or the saved ones has been mentioned. At no place in the Bible has it been mentioned that heaven is the final dwelling for the saved ones (Bunyan 76).

Many kinds of heaven have been mentioned in the Old Testament, and one of these is the atmosphere. The air that surrounds the human beings and the earth is also mentioned as the heaven. One of the main passages in the Old Testament that refer to the atmosphere as the heaven is Genesis 7:11-12. With the mention of the great flood of the Noah's Day, "The windows of heaven were opened. And the rain was on the earth forty days and forty nights." There is an additional mention of "the birds of heaven," those that fly overhead (Job 35:11; Jeremiah 16:4). If a careful observation is made of the removal of Elijah with the help of a fiery chariot, it can be seen that he was only transported to another place on the earth rather being transported to an eternal heaven (Madrid 80).

The aforementioned argument highlighted the importance of heaven as highlighted in the Old Testament. Second important fact that is to be highlighted here is in relation to hell. Bible has mentioned three different hells. However, these three kinds of hells are very different as compared to the widely believed concept of the hell. The bible has used the word hell translated from a Hebrew and two Greek words. The main source of confusion in these cases is that the four words have different meanings. 'Sheol' used in the Old Testament has the same meaning as the word 'hades' used in the New Testament. Hades is a Greek word and it is misleadingly used in the New… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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