With My Jealousy
The word Gehenna, or the Greek word “geenna,” is used twelve times in the New Testament, eleven times in the Gospels per Yahshua, and once in James; and in each case it is translated as “hell.” In the Old Testament, this same word, or location, is referred to thirteen times and is translated as Hinnom or Ben-hinnom (NAS). Never is it translated as “hell” in the Old Testament.
Where is Gehenna? Gehenna, or the Valley of Hinnom, is a deep, narrow valley just west and southwest of Jerusalem. It separates two mountains or hills. To the west is the Hill of Evil Counsel. And to the east is Mount Zion. Located in the Valley of Hinnom at one time was a town called Topheth. This was the place where the Jews had burned their children to Molech and Baal (Jeremiah 7:31-34).
Solomon erected high places for Molech (1 Kings 11:7). Ahaz and Manasseh made their children "pass through the fire" in this valley (2 Kings 16:3; 2 Chronicles 28:3; 33:6). And this reprehensible practice of infant sacrifice continued until Josiah “defiled Topheth” so “that no man might make his son or his daughter pass through the fire of Molech.”
Afterwards, Gehenna became a garbage dump and a cesspool for sewage. It was a place of burning fires that consumed the debris. Thus, Gehenna became associated with two things: the abominations of the children being offered to Molech, and the filth and detestable waste.
For this reason, when the early translators gave man his first Bibles, the word “geenna” was translated “hell.” But the question arises as to why so? The same location was never translated as “hell” in the Old Testament. And other cities and locations in the New Testament were translated by their names. Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Zion, Galilee, even Sodom and Gomorrah, were all translated as the local that they were. But not so with Gehenna, or the Valley of Hinnom. For some reason, translators wanted to make it an exception and give it their own identity, their own personal fulfillment and meaning.
Actually, this grave error is a revealing testimony within itself. Yahweh declared regarding Gehenna that men performed things there that “did not come into My mind” (Jeremiah 7:31). Even so, carnal theologians have come up with translations and ideas that equally did not come into His mind; appropriately, including their meaning assigned to this valley. While the writers of the Scriptures were inspired to record what Yahweh had them to write, the translators were not so inspired, at least by Yahweh. This concoction of an eternal hell where men suffer endlessly is TOTALLY false! It is completely contrary to Yahweh’s word and His ways and His laws. Leave it to Christians to incorporate heathen ideas into Yahweh’s word and give us this falsehood regarding Gehenna that we have had for almost 2,000 years. (For further study on this, read the two writings in our FAQ section, question number five.)
To advance Satan’s lie of an eternal hell, translators of the King James version actually took their liberty to translate four separate words into this lie. From the Old Testament was the word – sheol. And from the New Testament were three words – Gehenna, hades, and tartaros. Each of these was translated – “hell.” We will consider here each one.
Tartaros is used one time and is found in 2 Peter 2:4 where it talks about angels that sinned and were cast into tartaros and committed to pits of darkness, reserved for judgment. Tartaros was the Greek mythological god that personified the pit beneath the earth where the Titans were imprisoned.
The word “Gehenna” seems to have the meaning “valley of sighs” or “valley of groaning.” But there is one word associated with this valley that has a much surer meaning, and that is the town within it – Topheth.
Though some try to assign the meaning of this town relative to its ill location, we find that the Hebrew word “topheth” is used elsewhere in the Scriptures. In Job 17:6 we read – “But He has made me a byword of the people, and I am one at whom men spit (topheth).” Thus, as listed in at least one Bible dictionary, the meaning of “Topheth” is “spittle or spat upon.” More on this shortly.
If Gehenna is not some eternal place of torment as Christianity has led us to believe, then what is it? The answer is in the natural Gehenna to which Yahshua actually referred. As one would expect, this valley and its surroundings are the object lesson that holds the key to what it truly represents.
As we have seen, Hinnom is a valley between two hills. On the west is the Hill of Evil Counsel. On the east is Mount Zion. And in the valley is Topheth, or “spat upon.” Appropriate to what we see here, the west almost always speaks of death, while the east speaks of life, the rising of the light, and Yahshua’s return. The Hill of Evil Counsel receives its name from the supposed location of the house of Caiaphas where Judas went to arrange for Yahshua’s betrayal, and where the Jews made plans to put Him to death.
If one stood on this Hill of Evil Counsel and wanted to get to Zion, how would they get there? In order to go directly to Zion, there would be only one way – through the Valley of Hinnom, or Gehenna!
On the day of Pentecost when the Spirit fell on the church, or the former rain, Peter stated that Yahshua “was neither abandoned to Hades, nor did His flesh suffer decay. This Jesus God raised up again, to which we are all witnesses” (Acts 2:31-32). In order for Yahshua to put off the body of this flesh and put on immortality, what path did He have to follow? He had to first suffer death, stay in the grave for a period of time, come up from the grave, and ascend alive into heaven.
The Greek word used here – “Hades” – is comparable to the Hebrew word – “Sheol.” For example, when we read this same passage in Psalm 16:10, instead of the word “Hades,” we find the word “Sheol” – “For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol; neither will You allow Your Holy One to see the pit.” “Sheol” is death, and death alone. It is the grave, and not some eternal place of torment. If it was torment as the theologians of Molech want us to believe, then why did Job declare while in his great sorrows – “Oh that You would hide me in Sheol, that You would conceal me until Your wrath returns to You, that You would set a limit for me and remember me!” (Job 14:13). The fact was, Job was in such sorrow that he wanted to die, to go to Sheol, to go to the grave, for he knew that in that sleep rest, he would escape those sorrows that afflicted him daily in this life. If “Sheol” was a place of torment, why would Job have wanted to go there? He was already in torment, in hell, and wanted to escape it in Sheol, in the grave. Thus, Yahshua did not go to some tormenting “hell” where a devil punishes and holds people, but to the grave where He waited.
What are we seeing here? The church must follow the way of its Master. In order for the church to enter into Zion, in order for the church to experience immortal life, it too had to go the way of the Savior. It too had to go to the grave for a period of time, to go to Hades, to go to Sheol, to go to death, yes, even to go to Gehenna, before it could ascend Mount Zion. Whether it be the physical testimony wherein one must descend into Gehenna in order to get from the Hill of Evil Counsel over to Zion, or Yahshua’s own testimony of descending into the grave in order to enter into immortal life, both reveal the same path for the church – Gehenna is a breach period of descending into death.
The church began as a work that was destined for corruption. Between possessing earthly cursed flesh and existing in a world that remained under the government and control of Satan, as well as being under his apostleship (Shelah and Clay of Spittle, page 8), the church quickly listened to the voices of the Hill of Evil Counsel. When it did, the church then entered into its breach period – it descended into the Valley of Hinnom! Christianity is Gehenna!
And very briefly, this is the identical picture we find in Exodus 33:21-23 where the church is revealed as standing on the rock with Yahweh, then being hidden in the cleft of the rock wherein it cannot see, then finally Yahweh removing His hand and men seeing His back, His works that He has already performed. The cleft of the rock where men are essentially blinded, and the Valley of Hinnom, are the same – breach Christianity.
Quite appropriately, the Greek word “hades” actually comes from two words – “a” (alpha), which means “not,” and the verb “horao,” which means “to see,” thereby producing the noun with the meaning – “to not see.” “Hades” means “to not see.”
In John 9:4, when Yahshua was about to heal the sight of the man who had been blind from birth by making clay of spittle and sending him to the Pool of Siloam (read Shelah and Clay of Spittle), He told His disciples – “We must work the works of Him who sent Me, as long as it is day; night is coming, when no man can work. While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.” Is it not clear then that when Yahshua left this world, just as He said night came upon the world? If the Light of the world is not here, then there has been no light whereby men can see. As He foretold, there has been darkness instead, and the works that He would perform have thus actually never been accomplished. Gehenna is therefore precisely that period of darkness which Yahshua foretold. Certainly when one is in the grave, they do not see. They are in darkness; they are asleep. Equally, on the larger picture, this is precisely that which the church has entered ever since Yahshua left this earth. The church entered into Hades, into a period in which, specifically as the word “Hades” reveals, it has not been able to see. It (along with the whole world) has been in darkness, in the cleft of the rock.
And if Yahweh does not cut this darkness short from three “days” to two, then as Yahshua declared in His own prophetic and intercessoral three hours of darkness on the cross, it will be “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?”!
What again was the name of the town that occupied the Valley of Hinnom? Was it not Topheth, or “spat upon.” And what was it we learned in the writing, The Sandals and the Staff, regarding spitting? Did we not learn that Yahshua spat in the face of Christianity, thereby declaring it to be “the house of him whose sandal is removed” because it failed to “build up his Brother’s house” (Deuteronomy 25:5-10)? This is equally what Gehenna represents. It is Topheth Christianity that fails to build up Yahweh’s house, but rather turns it into a robbers’ den (Matthew 21:13).
Likewise, Christianity causes its children to pass through the fires of Molech, and it is where all detestable things and dung and refuse find there place. Christianity’s doctrines and their ways are detestable to Yahweh. Even as men performed things in Gehenna that “did not come into Yahweh’s mind,” so Gehenna Christianity has performed and taught things that have never entered into Yahweh’s mind.
So next time when someone tells you to “go to hell,” just let them know you have already been there, thank you, and it is the place where not only the church but all mankind has been for 2,000 and even 6,000 years!
While we cannot cover all the passages dealing with this issue regarding Gehenna, there are a few more we will touch on relative to its clear representation of Christianity. First, in Mark 9:47-48 we read the words of Yahshua – “it is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye, than having two eyes, to be cast into Gehenna; where there worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.” There is one worm that does not die, and that is the worm, Satan, who was cast down to this earth where he rules. For 2,000 years he has corrupted the manna of the word of God. He has made his way into every aspect of the church, one way or another, and has corrupted it.
And for the fire? The only time the word “Gehenna” was used outside of that by Yahshua, is found in James 3:6, where we read – “And the tongue is a fire, the very world of iniquity; the tongue is set among our members as that which defiles the entire body, and sets on fire the course of our life, and is set on fire by Gehenna.” James was a Jew, and he was entirely familiar with Gehenna, as well as the teachings of Yahshua and what He said regarding it. So when he said the tongue was set on fire by Gehenna, he was clearly referring to the fire that burned in that city dump just west, south-west of Jerusalem. This understanding provides us a new and clearer picture of what James was relating. The tongue is often a filthy dump fire. And today, we see that same filthy fire burning in the teachings of Christianity. It is a fire that has defiled “the entire body” of Christ.
When Yahshua spoke to the Pharisees, He was equally, and even more so, speaking to the church, and here is what He said. “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites, because you travel about on sea and land to make one proselyte; and when he becomes one, you make him twice as much a son of Gehenna as yourselves” (Matthew 23:15). Again, the issue here is making men sons of Gehenna, sons of corrupt Christianity.
And if you still think that “hell” is some distant place where men will suffer eternally in wrath and pain, then consider this from Yahshua. In Matthew 10:28, Yahshua said – “And do not fear those who kill the body (which of course is natural and of this earth), but are unable to kill the soul; but rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in Gehenna.” Hold on! How can Yahweh throw one’s body in Gehenna if it is some distant eternal place of punishment? The body is a temporal earth work. So in order for Yahweh to throw one’s body and soul into Gehenna, then it must be here on earth. And this is precisely what He did to the church. It received information from the Hill of Evil Counsel, and from there the church was thrown into Gehenna.
Now, if the Hill of Evil Counsel was the beginning of the church, and it was, and clearly the Valley of Hinnom has been the breach period of Christianity where men have not seen the truth but have been covered in dung and garbage and darkness, and the worm, Satan, has exercised freely there, and the unquenchable fire has burned, then very importantly, how does one come out of that place and go to Zion?
The answer is – now that the 2,000 year breach period of the church is complete and Satan’s tenure is at an end, Yahweh is opening the way for the Bride to come out of the afflicted body of Christ. It is the Bride that will be in the first resurrection and ascend Mount Zion. As written in the little book of Obadiah, verse 21 – “The saviors will ascend Mount Zion to judge the mountain of Esau (Christianity), and the kingdom will be Yahweh’s.”
Thus we find once again the same pattern we have seen in the opening section. The first two parts are the period of Christianity – the Hill of Evil Counsel and Gehenna. And the third part is the promise of Zion.
In Matthew 12:40 Yahshua said – “for just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the sea-monster; so shall the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.” But in Matthew 16:21, 17:23. and 20:19, as well as in Luke 9:22, 18:33, and 24:7, three times in each of these Gospels but not once in Christianity Mark, and once more in Luke 24:46 following His crucifixion, Yahshua clearly stated that He would suffer death, but would rise again on the “third day.”
There is an apparent difference between “three days and three nights,” and on the “third day.” Why were both of these conflicting periods given? Because Christianity was given a tenure of “three days and three nights” of Gehenna; but, Yahshua must cut their days short to two and return on the “third day,” or following two “days,” or 2,000 years. Thus, even as Yahshua spent two days in the grave and rose again on the “third day,” so the church has spent 2,000 years in the grave and in darkness, and will equally rise again on the third “day.” These two “days” in the grave are the “two parts” that are “cut off and die.”
And let us make some comments here regarding another misunderstood passage regarding Hades that will come up in the closing section. Now that you know what Hades really is, that it is the grave and not some Satan, tormenting hell, this brings new and true understanding to Yahshua’s HIGHLY misunderstood words in Matthew 16:18. It has been noted that if you say something often and by the right authority, people will accept it as truth. Look at what happened to the people of Germany under the repeated rhetoric of Hitler. The oft repeated message of hell is equally the case, and Matthew 16:18 is one verse that roles off of people’s tongues when it comes to defending Christianity regarding Satan being their substitutionary head – “And I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades shall not overpower it.”
First, and most importantly, you will notice that Yahshua did not say that the gates of Gehenna would not prevail against the church. Remember, Gehenna was an open dumpsite that had no gates, so no one would have been able to relate to that if He had said it regarding Gehenna. Also, prophetically it would have made no sense at all if Gehenna, or Christianity, would not prevail against the church. Gehenna is the church. The gates of Gehenna would not prevail against itself. That would not be. So what is actually being said here?
First, very importantly this account is found solely in first Remnant Matthew. Let us get straight to the point. The first Remnant has the promise of the first resurrection; but, they had to descend into Hades, or go to the grave. That is where they are now. And indeed the first Remnant is the rock that Yahshua Himself laid, and upon which He will indeed build His church. However, Christianity is not built upon that rock; but rather, it is the house built upon the wilderness sand of flesh man, and will not stand when these latter rain waters come upon it (Matthew 7:24-27). Already its false doctrines are falling when exposed to the light of truth.
When Yahshua said that the gates of Hades would not prevail against the church, He was clearly saying that the grave would not have the power to prevail against, to hold, the first Remnant. Again, this promise is recorded in first Remnant Matthew alone, and when Yahshua spoke this to Peter, He was in fact literally speaking to the first Remnant. They are the dead in Christ who rise first so as to be in the first resurrection, and the second Remnant will be built upon that rock, their work, even their government. Like the foundation that was laid by Zerubbabel that incurred a breach delay period afterwards, so the rock of the first Remnant has experienced a breach delay period in which it too has not been built upon. But, the second Remnant will now build the church on THAT rock. (To be covered in the closing section.) Therefore this passage in Matthew, this promise, has absolutely nothing to do with Christianity, and everything to do with the two-part Remnant; and the time of its fulfillment is now!
Thus, the rights spoken of in the next verse (Matthew 16:19) do not belong to Christianity either, but exclusively to the Remnant. The keys of the kingdom of heaven were given to the first Remnant, and the power to bind and loose on earth and in heaven belongs to them as well, and it is the second Remnant that receives that authority. Already the second Remnant has experienced the authority to unseal the scrolls and to see truth that was bound with the departing of the first Remnant. It is all a matter of law, of legal rights, of authority. The second Remnant has the legal rights given to the church in the beginning via the first Remnant.
I trust this section has been very helpful and valuable to you in understanding the true meaning of Gehenna. Now let us turn to that for which this entire writing has been titled. Once again we will see this all important and highly revealing testimony regarding this subject two-part/third part truth.
Continue to page 3 of He Was Jealous With My Jealousy for PHINEHAS