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Hades
Excerpt from the Lexham Bible Dictionary, the most advanced Bible dictionary.
A word that in ancient Greek literature could refer to the Greek god of the netherworld or the netherworld itself.By New Testament times, “Hades” could refer simply to death or the grave, as opposed to gehenna (“hell”), which was always a place of judgment. In the New Testament, Hades is sometimes personified (Rev 6:8; 20:13–14) and sometimes seen as a place (Matt 11:23; 16:18; Luke 10:15; 16:23; Acts 2:27, 31; Rev 1:18). In some places it is placed opposite heaven (Matt 11:23; Luke 10:15) or Abraham’s bosom (Luke 16:23). In the Septuagint, hadēs is almost always used to translate the Hebrew שְׁאוֹל‎ (she'ol) (sheol; e.g., Psa 9:18 LXX [Eng. 9:17]; Prov 1:12; 15:11; Job 14:13).
Dictionaries
The Lexham Bible Dictionary
Hades
Hades (ᾅδης, hadēs). A word that in ancient Greek literature could refer to the Greek god of the netherworld or the netherworld itself.By New Testament times, “Hades” could refer simply to death or the grave, as opposed to gehenna (“hell”), which was always a place of judgment. In the New Testament,
The Anchor Yale Bible Dictionary
Hades, Hell
HADES, HELL. The Greek word Hades (ha̧dēs) is sometimes, but misleadingly, translated “hell” in English versions of the NT. It refers to the place of the dead but not necessarily to a place of torment for the wicked dead. In Greek religious thought Hades was the god of the underworld; but more commonly
Baker Encyclopedia of the Bible
Hades
Hades. Abode of all the dead (in Greek and some Jewish literature) or the abode of the wicked dead (in Christian literature).In Greek mythology Hades was originally the god of the underworld (also named Pluto), a brother of Zeus. He was the abductor of Persephone and thus the cause of winter. His realm,
The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, Revised
Hades
Hades hāʹdēz [Gk. há̧dēs]; AV HELL; NEB also DEATH (Mt. 16:18; Acts 2:27, 31), DEPTHS (Mt. 11:23; Lk. 10:15), DEATH’S DOMAIN (Rev. 1:18). The underworld or realm of the dead.In Greek mythology Hades was originally the proper name of the god of the underworld (Homer Il xv.188), and the underworld
Tyndale Bible Dictionary
Hades
HADES* Abode of the dead. In Greek mythology Hades was originally the god of the underworld (also named Pluto), a brother of Zeus. He was the abductor of Persephone and thus the cause of winter. His realm, which was called by his name (and also called Tartarus), was the dark land where the dead existed.
The HarperCollins Bible Dictionary (Revised and Updated)
Hades
Hades (hay´deez), in Greek mythology, the god of the underworld, which was the abode of the dead. By extension, Hades came to refer to the realm of the dead itself. In the lxx, the word “Hades” is used to translate Hebrew sheol as well as other Hebrew words and phrases that refer to “the pit,” “stillness,”
The Wycliffe Bible Encyclopedia
Hades
HADES. Hades is another name of Pluto the Gr. god of the underworld. The name was transferred to the realm of the dead itself. The Hades of the Greeks was in two parts. The deeper part, where souls were punished, was sometimes called Tartarus, and the place of blessed souls was called the Elysian Fields
Eerdmans Dictionary of the Bible
Hades
Hades (Gk. hádēs)Originally the name of the Greek god of the underworld, but later the name of the underworld itself. Found in Homer, numerous Greek papyri, the LXX, Philo, and Josephus, as well as the NT, it is translated “hell” in most English versions of the Bible. In the LXX Hades is the name
Eerdmans Bible Dictionary
Hades
Hades [hāˊdēz] (Gk. hádēs).* The realm of the dead, derived from the name of the Greek god of the underworld. In the LXX the term translates Heb. še˒ôl, the gloomy underworld abode of the departed (Eccl. 9:10; Isa. 7:11; see Sheol). During the intertestamental period Hades came to be regarded
Dictionary of Deities and Demons in the Bible
Hades
HADES ἍιδηςI. Hades is the Greek name for the underworld and its ruler, as is the case in the Bible. The spelling of the name sometimes varies (Aides/Hades, Aidoneus) and the etymology is debated. The most recent analysis sees a link with the root *a-wid-, ‘invisible’ (Ruijgh 1991:575–576, but see
The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church
Hades
Hades (Gk. ᾅδης). The place or state of departed spirits. The word is used in the *Septuagint as a translation for the Hebrew ‘*Sheol’ (e.g. Is. 38:18). In later Judaism the term took on a more definite meaning, of a place of reward for the pious dead, or alternatively, and later, of a place of waiting
The New Unger’s Bible Dictionary
Hades
HA´DES (Gk. hadēs, “unseen”). This word occurs several times in the original and in the NASB and NIV, although KJV renders “hell” (Matt. 11:23; 16:18; Luke 10:15; 16:23; Acts 2:27, 31; Rev. 1:18; 6:8; 20:13–14; hadēs is behind KJV “grave” in 1 Cor. 15:55, but the true reading is thanatos, “death,”
Key passages
Ac 2:27

because you will not abandon my soul in Hades, nor will you permit your Holy One to experience decay.

Re 1:18

and the one who lives, and I was dead, and behold, I am living forever and ever, and I hold the keys of death and of Hades.

Re 20:13–14

And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades gave up the dead who were in them, and each one was judged according to their deeds. And Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death—the lake of fire.

See also