Nature of Hell
Wrong teachings about hell (everlasting torture in fire) blaspheme God by making Him appear as angry, cruel and vindictive – worse than the most wicked earthly father. At the same time, this teaching disregards the Heavenly Father’s Love, tenderness, and desire to have His children become happy. The equally erroneous corollary that some believe is that there is no hell, or if there is one, no one ever goes there.
In truth, hell is both a place and a condition of mind. It varies according to the soul condition, beliefs, evil thoughts, and recollections of evil deeds on the part of each individual. Therefore many different hells exist, having gradations and appearance of surroundings and causing different degrees of suffering depending on the defilement of the person’s soul. It is true that the condition of mind and soul can create an individual’s hell to a large extent and be the chief source of darkness and suffering. But in addition to that, the hell surroundings cause additional suffering that fallen souls may have to endure.
In the broadest sense, hell is everything outside of heaven. Heaven too is both a condition and a place, and it also consists of numerous spheres. In contrast to hell, where beings are in rebellion to God’s laws, in heaven everything operates in perfect harmony with divine ordinances. The spirit inhabitants of both heaven and hell, as well as the various subdivisions of both realms, are more real than both physical beings and places.
While the hells are places of darkness and suffering, there is no fire and brimstone, as nothing there could keep a fire burning. Although there are no demons or Satan, the evil spirits confined to hell can be more wicked, vicious and horrifying, than the devil has ever been imagined. The horrors and suffering of hell is as humanly inconceivable as the wonders and beauties of heaven. The suffering, however, is not inflicted by an angry or vindictive God. It is rather the result of each person’s earthly actions.
Purposes of Hells
In a nutshell, the existence of hells is for the purpose of the outworking of the law of compensation. When a person enters the spirit world, they become their own judge and executioner and come under the law of compensation (sowing and reaping) This law is necessary to preserve or restore harmony in the universe. While appearing harsh and cruel, it is a benign and beneficial law in that it works for a relatively short-term when the darkness and suffering are compared with an eternity of light and happiness. Even in hell, there is mercy and goodness of the Father, because the spirits confined there would actually be more unhappy if they were in heaven. The hell that they find themselves is in better agreement with their distorted soul condition.
Duration of Hells
As mentioned, hell is not a place of eternal punishment, but rather, as all parts of the spirit world are, a place of progression. Eventually, all those in the hells will leave upon being purified and forgiven. However, some may experience hell existence for centuries (humanly speaking, as time in spirit world runs differently) before they awaken and realize that they may become children of light and then start progressing in that direction. So the duration of one’s stay in hell varies depending to the individual’s soul condition when they arrived into the spirit world and their progress while in hell.
Benefits of Hells
A temporary stay in hell (the length of which depends on the individual’s soul condition and progress) enable the spirits to realize that the law of compensation is real and that there is a penalty to be paid for evil deeds and disregard for divine laws. Hell is also a place of probation, purification and progression. Hells assist in cleansing of souls to prepare them for higher realms. Once the penalty has been paid and forgiveness (forgetting the evil deeds, the memories of which add to the individual’s suffering in hell) is achieved, the spirit gradually moves from darkness to more and more light. If they learn about and start praying for the Divine Love, they will eventually progress to the Celestial Heavens where there is no limit to their further growth and progression. This has already been the case of some the world’s most evil men, including Nero and Caligula.
New Testament Revelations of Jesus of Nazareth, Chapter 9, pgs 450-465