Thursday, August 4, 2022

Death and Afterlife 20 - What is Hades?


What kind of place is Hades?

Saint Hippolytus the Roman writes: Hades is the place “in which all souls are detained until the time that God has determined.”

This is not a place where people enter a dormant existence. It is where eternal torment begins and continues in Hell after the Second Coming. We are tormented by all the desires we carried with us, but are now not able to fulfill.

Ezekiel; says:

“If a wicked man turns from all his sins which he has committed, keeps all My statutes, and does what is lawful and right, he shall surely live; he shall not die. None of the transgressions which he has committed shall be remembered against him; because of the righteousness which he has done, he shall live....

But when a righteous man turns away from his righteousness and commits iniquity, and does according to all the abominations that the wicked man does, shall he live? All the righteousness which he has done shall not be remembered; because of the unfaithfulness of which he is guilty and the sin which he has committed, because of them he shall die.” (Ezek 18: 21–22, 24)

God allows us to judge ourselves before He judges us through our conscience.

Bishop Theophilus of Antioch (c. AD 180):

He ... will examine all things, and will judge righteous judgment, rendering merited awards to each.

To those who seek immortality by patient endurance in well-doing, He will give life everlasting, joy, peace, rest and an abundance of good things.

To the unbelieving and despisers, who do not obey the truth but are obedient to unrighteousness, when they will have been filled with adulteries and fornications, ... there will be anger and wrath, tribulation and anguish. At the end, everlasting fire will possess such men.

Repentance is not possible at this time.

St. John Chrysostom also tells us, “When we depart to that place, we have no longer the option of repentance, nor of washing away our misdeeds.”

This same sentiment is echoed by St. Cyprian of Carthage:, St. Basil the Great, St. Gregory Nazianzen.

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