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Source: (consider it) Thread: Not having a hope in hell?
Late Quartet

Irredeemably speciesist?
# 1207

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What would 'not having a hope in hell' actually mean if one believed in hell being a fiery tormenting place. I ask, compared to what it would be to HAVE a hope in hell, is that also an option
(After a political comment on Corbyn's leadership: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-34577720 ).

Would not having a hope in hell mean something that much different if one believed hell to be the absence of God.

If we were talking about a biblical fiery lake, I do like what Walter Wink says about its location (where I think there's more hope associated with hell).

If we were talking about Hades, again, but again I'm not sure it makes much difference about what kind of hope you have there, though if we ascribe to Jesus descent to an 'other place' then is that the hope in hell ... as in, without Jesus' descent, no hope?

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Late Quartet is cycling closer to Route 6 than Route 66 these days.

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Lamb Chopped
Ship's kebab
# 5528

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I think the logic of the statement goes like this. Hell is a place of no hope. This situation (whatever is being referred to) is even worse and more hopeless--therefore, "we don't have a hope in hell," i.e. we don't have even as little (zero) hope as someone in hell might have, we have negative hope. It's hyperbole, of course.

I don't think your theological stance on the nature or existence of hell really affects the saying.

[ 20. October 2015, 12:20: Message edited by: Lamb Chopped ]

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Albert Ross
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# 3241

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Isn't this an abbreviated form of "not a snowball's hope in hell"? Meaning "not as much hope as ... ", that is "no hope".

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Elegant, concise and full of meaning.

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Jengie jon

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# 273

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Umh isn't the full quote "Does not have a snowball's hope in Hell"?

Jengie

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Late Quartet

Irredeemably speciesist?
# 1207

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I was pondering on the snowball in hell too, I thought that was a chance rather than a hope?

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Late Quartet is cycling closer to Route 6 than Route 66 these days.

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Albert Ross
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An internet search for "snowball hope hell" produces plenty of results.

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Elegant, concise and full of meaning.

Posts: 80 | From: Thames Estuary | Registered: Aug 2002  |  IP: Logged
Late Quartet

Irredeemably speciesist?
# 1207

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I've found a discussion about Zamhareer in Muslim thought is a part of hell with blizzards, but also in Dante's Divine Comedy Satan is, it seems, a frozen figure that beats an icy wind around the circles of hell.

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Late Quartet is cycling closer to Route 6 than Route 66 these days.

Posts: 897 | From: Sheffield | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
no prophet's flag is set so...

Proceed to see sea
# 15560

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'Until hell freezes over' is perhaps a variation.

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Eutychus
From the edge
# 3081

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Nice to see you back around, LQ!

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Belle Ringer
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# 13379

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Maybe the definition of hell is having no hope, that's when people commit suicide. Restore hope somehow, you restore life and end hell.
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Eutychus
From the edge
# 3081

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When I visited the European Court of Human Rights, the judge who showed us round said, in the context of "life means life" imprisonment, that she considered as a fundamendal human right the "right to hope".

Which I thought was pretty good.

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Let's remember that we are to build the Kingdom of God, not drive people away - pastor Frank Pomeroy

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Golden Key
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# 1468

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I'm used to "not even a snowball's *chance* in hell". As in, it would go all melty, and steam away--and you're worse off than *that*!

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The Phantom Flan Flinger
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I've often heard it as "not having a cat in hells chance" - not sure whether a cat would fare better or worse than a snowball...

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Gramps49
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# 16378

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Of course, the Inuit people of the north used to believe hell was in the sky because they feared the cold. The earth provided warmth and was considered the place of heaven.

If anything though, when we say Jesus went to the dead--or descended into hell we are affirming there is no place where God is not present.

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Alan Cresswell

Mad Scientist 先生
# 31

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That assumes no difference between "Hell = place of the dead" and "Hell = place of eternal damnation". In English we use the same word for both meanings. Which can get hellishly confusing at times.

IMO, wherever God is there is always hope. So God is in the place of the dead, because there is always hope of resurrection.

However, in the place of eternal damnation there is no hope, it is a place where God is not found. Of course, it may be entirely true that there is no where that God is not to be found - in which case a place of eternal damnation cannot exist.

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Jack o' the Green
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# 11091

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quote:
Originally posted by Alan Cresswell:
That assumes no difference between "Hell = place of the dead" and "Hell = place of eternal damnation". In English we use the same word for both meanings. Which can get hellishly confusing at times.


I blame the King James Bible for translating 'Sheol' in the Hebrew Bible as 'Hell' rather than something more appropriate like 'Hades', or simply leaving it untranslated.
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Boogie

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# 13538

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quote:
Originally posted by Alan Cresswell:
T

However, in the place of eternal damnation there is no hope, it is a place where God is not found. Of course, it may be entirely true that there is no where that God is not to be found - in which case a place of eternal damnation cannot exist.

If God is the creator and sustainer of all things then there can be no where that God isn't.

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Truman White
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# 17290

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quote:
Originally posted by Boogie:
quote:
Originally posted by Alan Cresswell:
T

However, in the place of eternal damnation there is no hope, it is a place where God is not found. Of course, it may be entirely true that there is no where that God is not to be found - in which case a place of eternal damnation cannot exist.

If God is the creator and sustainer of all things then there can be no where that God isn't.
That's what an old Pente preacher I knew used to say. If you'd gone to the grave with your sin, an eternity in the presence of a holy God was the worst place you could ever want to be.
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W Hyatt
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# 14250

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quote:
Originally posted by Alan Cresswell:
That assumes no difference between "Hell = place of the dead" and "Hell = place of eternal damnation". In English we use the same word for both meanings.

We do? [Confused]

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Alan Cresswell

Mad Scientist 先生
# 31

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Well, we do in Britain. I know, America has a different language that just has passing similarities to English [Biased]

Assuming someone believes there is a place where the dead reside, what is that called? When we recite the Creed "He descended into hell", is that not what is meant? More modern translations change that to avoid confusion with the more common contemporary uses of the word 'Hell', but that usage is still common - especially for those raised with older language usage in church.

There are two other more common uses of 'Hell'. One is the place of eternal damnation for the devil and all his angels, and those who do not find redemption in Christ - even if some would consider that to be a group with zero members they still have that concept of Hell.

The other is the kingdom where Satan rules. Which is popular, but not really supported by Christian Scriptures where (if he has a kingdom at all) he rules this world, although ultimately facing defeat from the superior claim of Christ to be Lord of all.

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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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# 76

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I prefer Whelk's chance in a Supernova.

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W Hyatt
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# 14250

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@Alan Cresswell

I guess it's the unconventional theology of my denomination, but this is the first I've ever heard of the first and last meanings you refer to, at least as meanings distinct from the second one. I've always assumed that Christ's descent was into the place where the eternally damned are (to save those who could be rescued), and it's a totally new concept to me that the kingdom where Satan rules is anything other than the place of eternal damnation.

The idea of using the word "hell" to refer to the place where the dead reside is just plain strange to me. There is no name for such a place as a whole that I know of, but I'm still incredulous about the word "hell" being used to refer to it. But then, this is one of the reasons why I continue to enjoy the Ship - to gain a broader perspective on people's religious beliefs.

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Ariel
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# 58

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quote:
Originally posted by Alan Cresswell:
Well, we do in Britain.

You might in your part of Scotland but I challenge you to tell anyone newly bereaved that their loved one is in Hell and see if they understand the same thing by it. Or try explaining someone's death to a small child. Don't most people say (for example) "Granny is now in Heaven"?

quote:
Assuming someone believes there is a place where the dead reside, what is that called? When we recite the Creed "He descended into hell", is that not what is meant?
Surely not. I always took that to refer specifically to the harrowing of Hell. The place where the dead reside is by default Heaven. Whether they actually qualify for it or not, in most people's minds that's where you go when you die.

[ 31. October 2015, 08:37: Message edited by: Ariel ]

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Baptist Trainfan
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quote:
Originally posted by Ariel:
[Or try explaining someone's death to a small child. Don't most people say (for example) "Granny is now in Heaven"?

No, they say "She's become a star in the sky" or some such guff which is supposed to soften the truth.
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Alan Cresswell

Mad Scientist 先生
# 31

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quote:
Originally posted by Ariel:
quote:
Assuming someone believes there is a place where the dead reside, what is that called? When we recite the Creed "He descended into hell", is that not what is meant?
Surely not. I always took that to refer specifically to the harrowing of Hell.
Yes, the harrowing of the place where the dead are, leading those who accept Him to Heaven. That isn't the same as Hell, the place of gnashing teeth where the fires never burn out.

But, it's a matter of theology that not all Christians accept, and that use of Hell isn't in common usage outside those churches which do share that view.

The range of views within the Church (and wider society) extend from:
  1. The dead cease to exist, and resurrection for those who are saved is a recreation of that person to live for ever with God in Heaven
  2. As above, but those who are not saved are recreated to exist eternally in the fires of damnation.
  3. When we die our souls rest in some form of existence - variously called Sheol, Limbo, "The Grave" - awaiting judgement
  4. Passing from the place of the dead (above) to heaven involves a period of purification (Purgatory)
  5. On death we pass straight to judgement, and then to Heaven or Hell depending on whether we've been naughty or nice.
And, some variations on that - can the dead get stuck passing to the place they belong, for example, or be called back in some sense?

The Harrowing of Hell, is descending to the no.3 option of place for the dead. Which is a different Hell to the place of damnation. And, you're right that use of "Hell" would not be used in contemporary society, only really in those parts of the Church which hold to the doctrine of the Harrowing of Hell. As you point out, in contemporary society, we would actually use "Heaven" for option 3.

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Dave W.
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Wikipedia has a long article on the Harrowing of Hell which describes the usage of "hell" to which Alan refers as a common abode for all the dead. It's also in the Catechism of the Catholic Church:
quote:
633 Scripture calls the abode of the dead, to which the dead Christ went down, "hell" - Sheol in Hebrew or Hades in Greek - because those who are there are deprived of the vision of God. Such is the case for all the dead, whether evil or righteous, while they await the Redeemer: which does not mean that their lot is identical, as Jesus shows through the parable of the poor man Lazarus who was received into "Abraham's bosom": "It is precisely these holy souls, who awaited their Saviour in Abraham's bosom, whom Christ the Lord delivered when he descended into hell." Jesus did not descend into hell to deliver the damned, nor to destroy the hell of damnation, but to free the just who had gone before him.

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