Q: #282. Is Hell in the center of the Earth?
A: The Bible does not answer this question. However, there are some clues that this is at least a possibility. The Bible says that Hell is:
A Furnace Of Fire – (Mt 13:42,50)
Eternal Fire – (Jude 1:7)
Unquenchable Fire – (Mt 3:12)(Lk 3:17)
Everlasting Fire – (Mt 25:41)
A Fire That Never Shall Be Quenched – (Mk 9:43-48)
When describing the direction of Hell, the Bible says this:
(Mt 12:40) “So shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth”
(Eph 4:9) “(Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?” (Also see: Ps 63:9)
(Amos 9:2) “Though they dig into hell”
(Isa 14:9) “Hell from beneath” (Also see: Prov 15:24)
(Isa 14:15) “Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.”
(Ezek 31:16) “I cast him down to hell with them that descend into the pit”
(Ezek 31:17) “They also went down into hell with him” (Also see: Ezek 32:27)
(2 Pet 2:4) For God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell”
(Rev 5:3) “Under the earth”
These two things can certainly describe the “center of the earth.” The Earth is made up of four layers: crust, mantle, outer core, inner core. The inner core is made of solid metal, the outer core of liquid metal. It is estimated that temperatures there are between 7000 – 9000 degrees Fahrenheit. That certainly fits a Biblical description. Obviously, the descriptions of the direction fit too (it is app. 3959 miles to the center of the Earth).
To me, the most intriguing place in the Bible in regards to this is found in (Num 16:30-33)(NASB) “But if the Lord brings about an entirely new thing and the ground opens its mouth and swallows them up with all that is theirs, and they descend alive into Sheol, then you will understand that these men have spurned the Lord.” (31) As he finished speaking all these words, the ground that was under them split open; (32) and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed them up, and their households, and all the men who belonged to Korah with their possessions. (33) So they and all that belonged to them went down alive to Sheol; and the earth closed over them, and they perished from the midst of the assembly.”
I used the NASB version for these verses because the KJV is pretty hard to understand here. The KJV uses the word “pit” rather than “Sheol.” If you look in Strong’s (KJV edition) for the word “Sheol” it says: “Sheol see HELL.” If you go to Hell, you see that the Hebrew word for “pit” in these verses (or “Hell” in every KJV verse) is “showl” (which is where “sheol” comes from). So, are these verses saying that Korah, and those who rebelled with him were sent alive straight down to “Sheol” (or “Hell”) (i.e. the center of the earth) when the ground opened up beneath them?
(See Ps 55:15 for a parallel verse in which David says to God “And let them (my enemies) go down quick (alive) into hell.”)
However, because the Bible is unclear on where Hell is, it is just as possible that Hell could lie in a whole other plane or dimension. Ultimately though, the most important thing about Hell is not where it is or the punishment one will face when he gets there, but rather that it is ETERNAL separation from God (2 Th 1:9)(Rev 21:27). There can be NOTHING worse than this! You can make a decision for Jesus TODAY and spend eternity with Him instead. Go here.
P.S. I should add that it is wise to avoid the teachings of those who claim to have “been to Hell” and then come back. I have seen a number of these, and while they are quite compelling, I have yet to see one that doesn’t run contrary to the Bible in numerous ways. I would also warn you about another “hoax” that has been going on for years in which it is claimed that some geologists in Siberia drilled a hole 14.4 kilometers (about 9 miles) into the Earth and then heard and recorded people screaming. (Why is it that things like this [or dead people coming back to life] are always reported to occur in some remote part of the world where it can never be verified??)