Second Death (Eternal Death)

Rev. 20:13-15, “…Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them…then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire.  This is the second death.

  • Did you notice that both “Death and Hades” are personified/objectified.  The Death being spoken of is “the Death Angel.”  Hades was an actual “place” where the disembodied souls “in them” were held captive prior to the resurrection.  They delivered up the dead souls which were held captive separated from their physical bodies.

Let us look at this same passage again, now expanding it to allow the biblical language to more clearly show us this personification, as well as the condemnation to eternal death aspect of what is being meant:

Rev. 20:13-15, “…the Death Angel and the place of Hades (aka Sheol) delivered up the disembodied souls who were in them…then the Death Angel and the place of Hades were cast into the lake of fire.  This is the second death.

  • “Then Death” – The “Death Angel” (Exod. 12:23; 1 Chron. 21:25), and its Hebrews 2:14 “power of death” (the Death Angel’s power under the condemnation of sin to hold the souls captive in Hades after physical death)… were cast into the lake of fire (Again, both “Death and Hades” are depicted as actual entities).
  • This is the second death – condemnation in eternal death/separation…” (The damned disembodied souls are said to be cast into the lake of fire, which is called the second death.  This “second death” is a second/final/eternal condemnation and separation from God. (From scriptures we know that the damned are conscious: Matt. 13:41-42, 49-50, 25:41, 46).

Rev. 21:8, “…cowardly, unbelieving, abominable…have their part in the lake of fire…which is the second death.”

  • Condemned under their sins to eternal conscious punishment and separation from God.


See also related “Topic Studies & Terms”:

Death (Biblical definitions)

Death (Unbelievers)

Lake of Fire

Great White Throne Judgment (Revelation 20:11-15)

Resurrection (General)



For a more in-depth study see the related full “Study Series”:

Study Series 3 What Happened in the Garden

Study Series 16 Lesson 7 Rev. Chapters 19 and 20 (sub study on The Wedding)