The Great Light

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The Creation Concept

The Great Light

Is Gehenna a symbol of hell?

Gehenna in the Old Testament

Gehenna in the New Testament

Gehenna in Prophecy

Jesus is the Light of the World

Sheol in Jonah 2:2

Gehenna and the Gospel

What is our promised "rest"?

Judgment and the lake of fire

Metaphors of the judgment

Eternal Torment?

Gehenna in J.A. Alexander's Matthew Commentary

Is the soul immortal? Edward White's "Life in Christ"

Winchester's Dialogues

Hanson's Aiõn-aiõnios

The Great Light

Isaiah wrote: "The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined." [Isaiah 9:2]

Who does not have to face death? This "great light" will shine upon every person!

The message of Jesus was the "great light" of Isaiah's prophecy. Matthew wrote: "Now when Jesus had heard that John was cast into prison, he departed into Galilee; And leaving Nazareth, he came and dwelt in Capernaum, which is upon the sea coast, in the borders of Zabulon and Nephthalim: That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying, The land of Zabulon, and the land of Nephthalim, by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles; The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up. From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand." [Matthew 4:12-17]

Matthew identifies the "great light" of Isaiah 9:2 as the message of Jesus, the gospel.

John identified Jesus as the true light, who enlightens every man. "That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world." [John 1:9]

In the creation story of Genesis 1, the sun is also called a "great light". "And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night"  [Genesis 1:16]. The sun was also created as a "sign" [Genesis 1:14], but what did it represent?

Since the sun is a great light, and the gospel that Jesus taught is a great light, is it not obvious that the sun represents the gospel?

It is the sun that clothes the woman in the prophecy of Revelation 12. "And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun" [Rev 12:1]. She is clothed with the gospel, the "great light" that Jesus taught, the gospel of the kingdom of God.

Although Jesus brought his message to the people of Israel, those who heard it were not enlightened, as they rejected him. John said, "He came unto his own, and his own received him not" [John 1:11].

The city of Capernaum was one of those cities in which he performed his miracles, but Jesus chastised them for their response: "And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted unto heaven, shalt be brought down to hell: for if the mighty works, which have been done in thee, had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day." [Matthew 11:23]

Most of the Jews reject Christ's message to this day. It is not the Jews who are "clothed with the sun" in Revelation 12:1, because the sun represents the gospel that Jesus brought. It is those who believe his gospel, and have the spirit of Christ in them, who are "clothed with the sun". But Joel's prophecy said the sun would be turned to darkness. "The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and terrible day of the LORD come." [Joel 2:31]

What is it that has turned the sun to darkness? The smoke from the bottomless pit! "And he opened the bottomless pit; and there arose a smoke out of the pit, as the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit." [Revelation 9:2]

A foul "smoke" of false doctrines from the "bottomless pit" obscures the message of the gospel, that clothes the heavenly woman, who represents all the saints of God. One of these false teachings is that the resurrection occurred in the first century AD! It was identified as false by the Apostle Paul [2 Timothy 2:17-19]. But the smoke lingers.

And it is the "beast" from the "bottomless pit" who makes war with God's 2 witnesses, the word of God and the spirit of God, and kills them. "And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them." [Revelation 11:7]

The bottomless pit is the source of the "smoke", representing false teachings, that turns the light of the gospel to darkness, and also the sinister "beast", who makes war against the spirit of Christ, and the word of God.

The outcome of the war is described in Revelation 12:7-9 "And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him."

This is clearly a spiritual war, and it is waged over many centuries, and the question is, on which side are we? Some of the stars are cast to the earth, they follow the tail of the dragon. These stars are saints who do not remain "in Christ". The outcome of this war is that the saints will overcome "by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony". Satan is called "the accuser of our brethren" [Revelation 12:10].

Now we see all these things in place. The gospel is obscured because of false teachings, such as the pagan doctrine of unending infernal suffering of unbelievers. People are confused, because there are thousands of sects and denominations, and many claiming their way is right. Who can deny that the light of the gospel is turned to darkness because of all the confusion? While Jesus said his disciples were "the light of the world" [Matthew 5:14], he also warned that their light could be turned to darkness. He said, "The light of the body is the eye: therefore when thine eye is single, thy whole body also is full of light; but when thine eye is evil, thy body also is full of darkness." [Luke 11:34]

Peter says that prophecy is our light in this present age, which he compares to the night. "We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts." [2 Peter 1:19]

Of course, the "day star" he refers to is the sun, which represents the true light of the gospel.

Is Gehenna a symbol of hell?

Most of the references to "hell" in the New Testament are translations of the word "Gehenna," the valley of Hinnom.

For centuries, theologians have claimed Gehenna represents the place of infernal torment of the souls of the  wicked. 

The valley of Hinnom has a detailed history in the Bible. Below is the account provided in Easton's Bible Dictionary:

Gehenna: (originally Ge bene Hinnom; i.e., "the valley of the sons of Hinnom"), a deep, narrow glen to the south of Jerusalem, where the idolatrous Jews offered their children in sacrifice to Molech (2 Chronicles 28:3; 33:6; Jeremiah 7:31; 19:2-6). This valley afterwards became the common receptacle for all the refuse of the city. Here the dead bodies of animals and of criminals, and all kinds of filth, were cast and consumed by fire kept always burning. It thus in process of time became the image of the place of everlasting destruction. In this sense it is used by our Lord in Matthew 5:22, 29, 30; 10:28; 18:9; 23:15, 33; Mark 9:43, 45, 47; Luke 12:5. In these passages, and also in James 3:6, the word is uniformly rendered "hell," the Revised Version placing "Gehenna" in the margin.

The sacrifice of children to Molech was proscribed in the law of Moses.

Leviticus 18:21
And thou shalt not let any of thy seed pass through the fire to Molech, neither shalt thou profane the name of thy God: I am the LORD.

Leviticus 20:2
Again, thou shalt say to the children of Israel, Whosoever he be of the children of Israel, or of the strangers that sojourn in Israel, that giveth any of his seed unto Molech; he shall surely be put to death: the people of the land shall stone him with stones.

Did Jesus refer to Gehenna as "the place of everlasting destruction," implying hell is a place of infernal torment as the pagans believed?

I suggest Jesus was influenced more by what the law of Moses said, and by the history of Gehenna recorded in the holy scriptures, than by all the traditions and superstitions of men. So we should look in the scriptures for the significance of Gehenna, rather than assume that human tradition and speculation is correct. 

Indeed, belief in a subterranean place of torment for the souls of the unrighteous dead was a popular superstition among the Jews in the time of Jesus. The Pharisees believed in the immortality of the soul, according to Josephus, who says they taught "that every soul is imperishable, but that only those of the righteous pass into another body, while those of the wicked are, on the contrary, punished with eternal torment" -Josephus Wars 2.8.14

Also, "they hold the belief that an immortal strength belongs to souls, and that there are beneath the earth punishments and rewards for those who in life devoted themselves to virtue or vileness, and that eternal imprisonment is appointed for the latter, but the possibility of returning to life for the former" -Josephus Ant. 18.1.3

Jesus warned his disciples, "Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees", referring to their doctrines. [Matthew 16:6, 12]

Gehenna in the Old Testament

Worship of Molech was introduced in Israel under the reign of Solomon.

1 Kings 11:7
Then did Solomon build an high place for Chemosh, the abomination of Moab, in the hill that is before Jerusalem, and for Molech, the abomination of the children of Ammon.

King Josiah destroyed these pagan shrines:

2 Kings 23:10
And he defiled Topheth, which is in the valley of the children of Hinnom, that no man might make his son or his daughter to pass through the fire to Molech.

Ahaz introduced the evil practice again:

2 Chronicles 28:3
Moreover he burnt incense in the valley of the son of Hinnom, and burnt his children in the fire, after the abominations of the heathen whom the LORD had cast out before the children of Israel.

Manasseh continued the evil practise, sacrificing even his own children.

2 Chronicles 33:6
And he caused his children to pass through the fire in the valley of the son of Hinnom: also he observed times, and used enchantments, and used witchcraft, and dealt with a familiar spirit, and with wizards: he wrought much evil in the sight of the LORD, to provoke him to anger.

Jeremiah said it was because of these evils that the city of Jerusalem was taken into captivity by Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon. And Jeremiah wrote that God said for them to do such things 'never came into his mind'.

Jeremiah 32:35
And they built the high places of Baal, which are in the valley of the son of Hinnom, to cause their sons and their daughters to pass through the fire unto Molech; which I commanded them not, neither came it into my mind, that they should do this abomination, to cause Judah to sin.

The judgment of those who did such things was that they were killed and their bodies were thrown into Gehenna, which became known as a place of shame and destruction. Jeremiah wrote.

Jeremiah 7:30-34
For the children of Judah have done evil in my sight, saith the LORD: they have set their abominations in the house which is called by my name, to pollute it. And they have built the high places of Tophet, which is in the valley of the son of Hinnom, to burn their sons and their daughters in the fire; which I commanded them not, neither came it into my heart. Therefore, behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that it shall no more be called Tophet, nor the valley of the son of Hinnom, but the valley of slaughter: for they shall bury in Tophet, till there be no place. And the carcases of this people shall be meat for the fowls of the heaven, and for the beasts of the earth; and none shall fray them away. Then will I cause to cease from the cities of Judah, and from the streets of Jerusalem, the voice of mirth, and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom, and the voice of the bride: for the land shall be desolate.

Jesus' use of 'Gehenna' as a place of shame, and as symbolic of the fate of those rejected as unfit for the kingdom, shows that they are not in a place of infernal torment. None of those who were thrown into Gehenna in the Old Testament suffered any more after death, although their smoke continued to rise, and their bodies decayed. Worms became flies, they did not die, as Isaiah observed. [Isaiah 66:24]

Since Jeremiah said that for the people to burn their sons and their daughters in the fire as a religious sacrifice had "never come into God's heart," because it was evil, and condemned by the law, how much more, is it unthinkable that God himself would subject his own offspring to such a fate!

It is God's condemnation of that evil practice throughout scripture and in the history of Israel that the scriptures associate with 'Gehenna', and that is why Jesus uses that as a metaphor for the place of the unrighteous dead. It is NOT a place of infernal suffering, as such things 'never came into the mind of God'. It was a place associated with God's condemnation of cruel, inhuman, pagan depravity.

To attribute such behaviour to God is a serious mistake indeed! God's law shows us his character, and his law condemns that sort of cruelty. Why do some Christians say God not only throws people into a fiery hell, but that their suffering there will last forever? Clearly they don't understand that he is a God of love!

Gehenna in the New Testament

In no place where the word Gehenna is used in the New Testament does it have anything to do with torment. There are references to worms that don't die, and fire that cannot be quenched, but nothing about souls suffering torment.

Matthew 5:21-22
Ye have heard that it was said to them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment: but I say unto you, that every one who is angry with his brother shall be in danger of the judgment; and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council; and whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of the hell [i.e., Gehenna] of fire.

Jesus associated Gehenna with fire. But what kind of fire? Is it natural fire, or is the 'fire' a metaphor?

Matthew 5:29-30
And if thy right eye causeth thee to stumble, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not thy whole body go into hell. And if thy right hand causeth thee to stumble, cut it off, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not thy whole body go into hell [i.e., Gehenna]. 

Matthew 10:28
And be not afraid of them that kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell [i.e., Gehenna].

Notice that Jesus says that when one is cast into Gehenna both the soul and body are destroyed. Therefore, it cannot refer to a place of unending infernal suffering. 

Luke 12:4-5
And I say unto you my friends, Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. But I will warn you whom ye shall fear: Fear him, who after he hath killed, hath power to cast into hell [i.e., Gehenna]: yea, I say unto you, Fear him.

Jesus makes a distinction between death and being cast into Gehenna, as Gehenna is a symbol for the fate of those who are declared unfit for the kingdom of God. They are raised up in the judgment with the people who heard Jesus preach, but rejected him. [Matthew 10:15, Matthew 11:24, Mark 6:11]

Matthew 18:9, Mark 9:43-45
And if thy hand cause thee to stumble, cut it off: it is good for thee to enter into life maimed, rather than having thy two hands to go into hell [i.e., Gehenna], into the unquenchable fire.

This is no natural fire, as the fires of the literal Gehenna have all gone out. I suggest it refers to the "fire" of God's word, in the judgment, which consumes all the false beliefs of man. [Jeremiah 23:29, 2 Peter 3:7]

Matthew 23:15
Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte; and when he is become so, ye make him twofold more a son of hell [i.e., Gehenna] than yourselves.

Matthew 23:33
Ye serpents, ye offspring of vipers, how shall ye escape the judgment of hell [i.e., Gehenna]?

Jesus associated Gehenna with judgment. In the judgment, the knowledge of God fills the earth, as water covers the sea. [Isaiah 11:9] And it is a 'fire' that destroys all false beliefs.

James 3:6
And the tongue is a fire: the world of iniquity among our members is the tongue, which defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the wheel of nature, and is set on fire by hell [i.e., Gehenna]. 

None of the above associate hell with Satan; none of the above say that Satan's domain is Gehenna, or hell.

Gehenna in Prophecy

When the prophet Jeremiah described the boundaries of the holy city, he included the area of Gehenna, which he referred to as "the valley of the dead bodies." 

Jeremiah 31:38-40
And the whole valley of the dead bodies and of the ashes, and all the fields as far as the Brook Kidron, to the corner of the Horse Gate toward the east, shall be holy to the LORD. It shall not be plucked up or thrown down anymore forever. 

Eventually, Gehenna is to become holy to the Lord! Does not this prophecy suggest there is hope for those cast into it? 

Jesus is the Light of the World

The apostle John spoke of Jesus when he said: "That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world" (John 1:9). Down through the centuries, Jesus Christ has given Christian men of science "light" or knowledge about astronomy and the physical world, that culminated in the scientific revolution. That is shown by the prophecy of the 2,300 days in Daniel 8:13-14 which foretold the cleansing of God's sanctuary of heaven, or the universe. It was man's concept of the heavens that was "set right" at the time of the scientific revolution, 23 centuries after Daniel's vision.

In the scientific revolution, the old cosmology, which kept the ancient world in darkness and ignorance about the nature of the universe, was completely destroyed.

The development of mathematics, the exploration of the earth, and the protestant reformation all contributed to the intellectual environment in which the scientific revolution occurred.

The reformation allowed independence of thought, that was suppressed in countries dominated by the Roman Catholic Church. What is interesting in studying the developmets that led to the scientific revolution is that almost all of those involved were devout Christians, men who looked to Jesus Christ for their light, and for understanding of the natural world.

Ernest Naville showed that the great discoverers in science in past times such as Galileo, Kepler, Bacon, and Newton, were nearly always devout men. This was also true of men like Faraday, Brewster, Kelvin, and a host of others in more recent times.

The astronomical side of the scientific revolution is often supposed to have begun with Copernicus, but his ideas were not generally accepted for another two centuries. For example John Milton's poems feature a Ptolemaic universe, published in the late 17th century.

Many devout Christians, including both Catholics and Protestants, contributed to the great revolution in astronomy that eventually overthrew the old geocentric cosmology forever. This was accomplished in the mid eighteenth century, 23 centuries from the date Daniel gave for his vision of the 2,300 days.

By the mid eighteenth century Sir Isaac Newton's discoveries had become well known and popularized. His books were being translated to English and French. The period became known as the "Enlightenment".

Most of the men involved in the scientific revolution who are listed above were Christians. The scientific revolution was a movement within Christianity, and the truths that were discovered were gifts of Jesus Christ to mankind. He is the "true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world" as John wrote (John 1:9). And as the sun gives light to both the evil and the just, the light of modern science that Christ has given is enjoyed by all.

Steven Dutch wrote,

The late Professor G. J. Romanes has, in his "Thoughts on Religion," left the testimony that one thing which largely influenced him in his return to faith was the fact that in his own university of Cambridge nearly all the men of most eminent scientific attainments were avowed Christians. "The curious thing," he says, "is that all the most illustrious names were ranged on the side of orthodoxy. Sir W. Manson, Sir George Stokes, Professors Tait, Adams, Clerk Maxwell, and Bayley - not to mention a number of lesser lights, such as Routte, Todhunter, Ferrers, etc., --were all avowed Christians" (page 137). ... anyone who knows the opinions of our leading scientific men is aware that to accuse the majority of being men of unchristian or unbelieving sentiment is to utter a gross libel.

This is supported by the following statement by James Orr in 1908 on the relation of Christianity to other world views.

Relation of Christianity to world-theories

This is perhaps the place to point out that, whatever the character of the world-view involved in Christianity, it is not one in all respects absolutely new. It rests upon, and carries forward to its completion, the richly concrete view of the world already found in the Old Testament. As an able expounder of Old Testament theology, Hermann Schultz, has justly said--"There is absolutely no New Testament view which does not approve itself as a sound and definitive formation from an Old Testament germ--no truly Old Testament view which did not inwardly press forward to its New Testament fulfilment."

This is a phenomenon which, I think, has not always received the attention it deserves. What are the main characteristics of this Old Testament conception? At its root is the idea of a holy, spiritual, self-revealing God, the free Creator of the world, and its continual Preserver. As correlative to this, and springing out of it, is the idea of man as a being made in God's image, and capable of moral relations and spiritual fellowship with his Maker; but who, through sin, has turned aside from the end of his creation, and stands in need of Redemption. In the heart of the history, we have the idea of a Divine purpose, working itself out through the calling of a special nation, for the ultimate benefit and blessing of mankind. God's providential rule extends over all creatures and events, and embraces all peoples of the earth, near and remote. In view of the sin and corruption that have overspread the world, His government is one of combined mercy and judgment; and His dealings with Israel in particular are preparative to the introduction of a better economy, in which the grace already partially exhibited will be fully revealed. The end is the establishment of a kingdom of God under the rule of the Messiah, in which all national limitations will be removed, the Spirit be poured forth, and Jehovah will become the God of the whole earth. God will make a new covenant with His people, and will write His laws by His Spirit in their hearts. Under this happy reign the final triumph of righteousness over sin will be accomplished, and death and all other evils will be abolished. Here is a very remarkable "Weltanschauung," the presence of which at all in the pages of the Hebrew Scriptures is a fact of no ordinary significance. In the comparative history of religions, it stands quite unique.

Speculations on the world and its origin are seen growing up in the schools of philosophy; but on the ground of religion there is nothing to compare with this. The lower religions, Fetishism and the like, have of course nothing of the nature of a developed world-view. The rudiments of such a view in the older nature-religions are crude, confused, polytheistic--mixed up abundantly with mythological elements. Brahmanism and Buddhism rest on a metaphysical foundation; they are as truly philosophical systems as the atomistic or pantheistic theories of the Greek schools, or the systems of Schopenhauer and Hartmann in our own day. And the philosophy they inculcate is a philosophy of despair; they contain no spring of hope or progress. Zoroastrianism, with its profound realisation of the conflict of good and evil in the universe, perhaps comes nearest to the religion of the Old Testament, yet is severed from it by an immense gulf. I refer only to its pervading dualism, its reverence for physical elements, its confusion of natural and moral evil--above all, to its total lack of the idea of historical Revelation.

The Biblical conception is separated from every other by its monotheistic basis, its unique clearness, its organic unity, its moral character, and its teleological aim.

It does not matter for the purposes of this argument what dates we assign to the books of the Old Testament in which these views are found whether we attribute them, with the critics to the age of the prophets, or to any other. These views are at least there many centuries before the Christian age began and they are found nowhere else than on the soil of Israel. This is the singular fact the critic has to face, and we cannot profess to wonder that, impartially studying it, voices should be heard from the midst of the advanced school itself unhesitatingly declaring, Date your books when you will, this religion is not explicable save on the hypothesis of Revelation!


Dutch quote:

Ernest Naville, 1884. Modern physics: Studies historical and philosophical. T. & T. Clark

James Orr, D.D., 1908. Christian View of God and the World, NEW YORK, CHARLES SCRIBNERS's SONS

Sheol in Jonah 2:2

Jonah 2:2
Out of the belly of hell [sheol] cried I, and thou heardest my voice.

Comment from a web site: "Yes, Jonah was in the belly of a fish, but there can be no doubt that this story is a picture of a rebellious man repenting in sheol, then being pardoned and restored and used of God."

The translators of the KJV translate "sheol" as "hell" 31 times, and "grave" 31 times, and "pit" 3 times. It is often synonymous with the grave. It simply means "the state of death". In scripture, it is never connected with concepts of hell, or infernal torment. Both the righteous and wicked went to sheol.  

Sheol has very much the same meaning as the Greek word Hades, that is the unseen, or the grave, but Hades was also the name of a Greek deity, and has mythological associations. Jonah was in "sheol" while in the belly of the fish, and prayed to God, and God saved him. He was a type of all those who end up in sheol, because he was saved out of it. The people of Nineveh may be compared with unbelievers, those who reject the gospel. At first Jonah was unwilling to preach to them. But when he was delivered from the belly of the fish, he went to preach to the people of Nineveh as God had commanded. Similarly the saints of God who are raised from the grave will teach the nations, and God will eventually save them too, just as he showed mercy to the people of Nineveh. Jesus said Jonah's 3 days in the belly of a fish was a sign to his generation. Jonah was saved from sheol, just as Christ was delivered from sheol, after 3 days.

Luke 11:29-32
And when the people were gathered thick together, he began to say, This is an evil generation: they seek a sign; and there shall no sign be given it, but the sign of Jonas the prophet.
For as Jonas was a sign unto the Ninevites, so shall also the Son of man be to this generation.
The queen of the south shall rise up in the judgment with the men of this generation, and condemn them: for she came from the utmost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and, behold, a greater than Solomon is here.
The men of Nineve shall rise up in the judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: for they repented at the preaching of Jonas; and, behold, a greater than Jonas is here.

There have been many interesting variations in the English translations of Jonah 2:2, especially in the rendering of "sheol", as shown below. Some translators tried to identify sheol with the traditional hell, but the use of sheol for the fish which had swallowed Jonah has caused them some trouble, and has given rise to various interpretations.

John Wycliffe's Translation: 1382-1395
and seide, Y criede to God of my tribulacioun, and he herde me; fro the wombe of helle Y criede, and thou herdist my vois.

Original King James Version: 1611
And said, I cried by reason of mine affliction vnto the LORD, and hee heard mee; out of the belly of hell cried I, and thou heardest my voyce.

Darby Translation: 1890
and he said: I cried by reason of my distress unto Jehovah, and he answered me; Out of the belly of Sheol cried I: thou heardest my voice.

Young's Literal Translation: 1898
And he saith: I called, because of my distress, to Jehovah, And He doth answer me, From the belly of sheol I have cried, Thou hast heard my voice.

Jewish Bible (JPS): 1917
And he said: I called out of mine affliction unto the LORD, and He answered me; out of the belly of the nether-world cried I, and Thou heardest my voice.

The Holy Bible from Ancient Eastern Manuscripts (Lamsa): 1957
I cried to the Lord in my distress and he answered me; out of the depths of Sheol cried I, and thou heardest my voice.

New Catholic Liturgical Bible: 1963
Out of my distress I called to the Lord, and he answered me; from the midst of the nether world I cried for help, and you heard my voice.

The Amplified Bible: 1965
And said, I cried out of my distress to the Lord, and He heard me; out of the belly of Sheol cried I, and You heard my voice.

New Life Version: 1969
saying, "I called out to the Lord because of my trouble, and He answered me. I cried for help from the place of the dead, and You heard my voice."

The Living Bible: 1971
"In my great trouble I cried to the Lord and he answerd me; from the depths of death I called, and Lord, you heard me!"

The New International Version: 1973
He said: "In my distress I called to the Lord, and he answered me. From the depths of the grave I called for help, and you listened to my cry."

The Holy Bible an American Translation: 1976
...and said: "In my distress I called to the Lord, and He answered me. From the belly of the underworld I cried, and You heard my voice."

Good News Bible: 1976
"In my distress, O Lord, I called to you, and you answered me. From deep in the world of the dead I cried for help, and you heard me."

The New American Standard Bible: 1977
and he said, "I called out of my distress to the LORD, And He answered me. I cried for help from the depth of Sheol; Thou didst hear my voice."

The New King James Version: 1985
And he said: "I cried out to the Lord because of my affliction, And He answered me. Out of the belly of Sheol I cried, and You heard my voice."

New Revised Standard Version: 1989
...saying, "I called to the Lord out of my distress, and he answered me; out of the belly of Sheol I cried, and you heard my voice."

The Message: 1993
 He prayed: "In trouble, deep trouble, I prayed to God. He answered me. From the belly of the grave I cried, 'Help!' You heard my cry."

21st Century King James Version: 1994
and said: "I cried by reason of mine affliction unto the LORD, and He heard me. Out of the belly of hell cried I, and Thou heardest my voice."

Contemporary English Version: 1995
When I was in trouble, LORD, I prayed to you, and you listened to me. From deep in the world of the dead, I begged for your help, and you answered my prayer.

New Living Translation: 1996
He said, "I cried out to the Lord in my great trouble, and he answered me. I called to you from the land of the dead, and Lord, you heard me!"

Holman Christian Standard Bible: 1999
I called to the LORD in my distress, and He answered me. I cried out for help in the belly of Sheol; You heard my voice.

English Standard Version: 2001
saying, "I called out to the LORD, out of my distress, and he answered me; out of the belly of Sheol I cried, and you heard my voice."

New Century Version: 2005
"When I was in danger, I called to the Lord, and he answered me. I was about to die, so I cried to you, and you heard my voice."

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