Just happened to be researching this topic. (Sorry if Bible stuff bothers anyone who reads this, please ignore me if it annoys you.) Figured I'd hop in on it, since I study these things a lot. If anyone wants to do the research then, feel free, I definitely encourage it! I.. wanted to make this post, not to preach or anything, but because the topic of hellfire and eternal suffering is saddening to me and the mere idea of God actively taking people up to heaven because God needed another angel is... really depressing. Its contradictory if God is this... loving Creator, lover of mankind.. so I thought I'd share some... comforting messages, backed up with some simple scriptures...
A couple people already spoke about this, forgive my memory but it was about how we are dust. We decompose into dust, quite literally. (I like backing my stuff up with scriptures..) Genesis 2:7 supports that. "And Jehovah God went on to form the man out of dust-" We can see corpses rotting away and eroding.
But what actually happens? Psalms 146:4- "His spirit goes out, he returns to the ground; On that very day his thoughts perish." So.. think of your spirit, being a like.. candle. The wick completely melts away and the flame goes out.. Like our spirit when we die. We know nothing because... our thoughts perish along with everything else. Ecclesiastes 9:5 even states that "the dead know nothing at all."
What about hellfire? What's going there? Is there an afterlife? What about spirits living on? Well, let me share my findings with you! Hopefully, you find this interesting! I'll link my research.
Hellfire: There is no direct scripture for hellfire, this one is based more off of... personal interpretation. Let this sink in though! Romans 6:23, bring out that the wages sin pays is death. When we die, our sins are wiped clean. Why are we being sent to hell if we have nothing to be punished for?
What is Death?: Once again, personal interpretation. Death is the opposite of life. I think we all can agree to that...*nervous laugh* right? I think it is at least. Remember Lazarus? Jesus's friend who died and was dead for 4 days and Jesus's resurrected him? John 11:11 says that he fell asleep in death. Death is compared to literally falling asleep, like in Acts: 7:60 and 1Corinthians 15:6. "Fallen asleep in death." Ok we fall asleep... what the heck happens? Ecclesiastes 9:10 says it right there. "Whatever your hand finds to do, do with all your might, for there is no work nor planning nor knowledge nor wisdom in the Grave-" So... to put it frankly, no one is sent to heaven and no one is sent to hell. Everyone just...goes to sleep in death, Jesus who already knows the condition of the dead, did not say Lazarus was not in heaven with his dead family, wandering around as a spirit or was suffering in hell.
Afterlife?: Isaiah 26:14 helps us to appreciate that our loved ones are powerless in death as in they have no influence on the physical world. "They are dead; they will not live. Powerless in death, they will not rise up." This also ties in the "Spirit living on" theory as well.
Christian denominations that believe in an immortal soul get this teaching, not from the Bible, but from Ancient Greek philosophy. And God does not condone merging his teachings with human philosophies, and that is stated in Colossians 2:8.
I dont know.. this makes me feel better knowing that my dead family is just... sleeping. They have no influence in our world, nor are they suffering anywhere, nor did God take them away... Kind of soothing in a way...
(I also googled my scriptures.)
I love researching stuff like this! I hope you found my little studies to be interesting and sorry if you found this to be annoying too... I just thought I'd share my findings.. that's all!