Abyss (religion)

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In religion, an abyss is a bottomless pit, or also a chasm that may lead to the underworld or hell.

In the Septuagint, or Greek version of the Hebrew Bible, the word represents both the original unfinished creation (Genesis 1:2) and the Hebrew tehom ("a surging water-deep"), which is used also in apocalyptic and kabbalistic literature and in the New Testament for hell; the place of punishment; in the Revised version of the Bible "abyss" is generally used for this idea. Primarily in the Septuagint cosmography the word is applied both to the waters under the earth which originally covered it, and from which the springs and rivers are supplied and to the waters of the firmament which were regarded as closely connected with those below.

In the Parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus there is an abyss between the righteous dead and the wicked dead in Sheol.[1]

In the Book of Revelation, Abaddon is called "the angel of the abyss".[2]


  • Wikisource-logo.svg Herbermann, Charles, ed. (1913). "Abyss". Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company.


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