Are There Actually 2 Hells?

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Bill Wiese

Did you know that there are actually two hells? The current hell is called Hades in the Greek, and Sheol in the Hebrew. According to 49 verses in the Bible, it is located down deep in the earth.

The lake of fire is the future hell, which Jesus called Gehenna. Jesus used the word Gehenna 11 times in reference to the lake of fire, and James used it once. Currently, no one resides there. At Judgment Day, the current hell (Hades) will be delivered up and all the people in it.

Revelation 20:11-15 states, “Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away. And there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the thing, which were written in the books. The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.”

The books will be opened and those in the current hell, or hades, will stand before God at the Great White Throne Judgment. They will all be judged by the works they have done. Their actions, their thoughts and even their motives will be judged.

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Proverbs 24:9 says, “The thought of foolishness is a sin.” That means even a foolish thought would exclude a person from heaven. That’s an extremely high standard, and it leaves all of us guilty. In addition, the One they all denied as the Lord and Savior will be the Judge. Imagine the very One whose name many took in vain their entire lives will be their Judge. That should make you tremble! 

Those of us who have turned from our sins and received Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior prior to our death will not be present at this Great White Throne Judgment. All Christians will stand before a different judgment, mentioned in 2 Corinthians chapter 5. At this judgment rewards will be given (or withheld) for works done in obedience to God while we were alive on earth. This is not a judgment of sin, but a judgment to determine rewards. 

Again, the lake of fire (or future hell) currently sits empty. The first occupants will be the Beast and the False Prophet. This will be at the end of the seven-year tribulation period. After the seven years, the thousand-year reign of Christ will begin on the earth. At the end of the thousand years, the Beast and the False Prophet will still exist in that lake of fire.

Be warned … you do not want to be condemned to the lake of fire! It will be torment, pain and terror for all eternity. It will also be eternal separation from God, and all the good you experience in this life.

The question for you is, do you know if your name is written in His book?

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Bill Wiese is the author of New York Times best selling book, 23 Minutes In Hell, the story of his life-changing visit to hell in 1998. Bill has since authored six additional book titles, and continues to share his experience around the world. He and his wife Annette founded Soul Choice Ministries in late 2006 and have dedicated their lives to reaching the unsaved.  For more information about Bill Wiese and Soul Choice Ministries please visit us at: You can find more of Bill’s teachings at:

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