Ask a Bible Teacher

The Keys Of Death And Hades

Q. Thank you for taking your time to answer the questions that come your way. You are a beacon of light in a sea of darkness.  I’m wondering about the belief that Jesus descended to hell and took the keys to hell from Satan. I understand the concept of hell being “paradise” and that is where Jesus went after he was crucified. That makes sense of the passage when Jesus was on the cross and he spoke to the thief next to him, telling the thief He’d see him in paradise.  I don’t understand from whence came the idea that Satan had the keys to hell.  Is it in the Bible somewhere, or is this just someone’s opinion?

A. Holding the keys to a place means you control access to that place. Satan has never determined who goes to hell. That’s a choice every human makes for himself, and even then it’s the Lord who consigns a person there.

In Rev. 1:18 Jesus said that He holds the keys of death and Hades. There’s no Scripture to support the claim that He took them from Satan, because Satan never had them.

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