"Hell" or "Sheol/Grave" in Psalm 9:17?
The KJV says:
"The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God." (Psalm 9:17)
The ESV says:
"The wicked shall return to Sheol, all the nations that forget God." (Psalm 9:17)
In the KJV the word "שאולה" (showlah) is translated either "hell" or "grave" depending on context. The KJV never leaves the word untranslated as "Sheol". The KJV's rendering of the word as "hell" is challenged in several verses, including Psalm 9:17. The context of Psalm 9:17, however, favors the rendering as "hell". The verse is describing a fate that is unique to the wicked. Going to the "grave" is not unique to the wicked because even the righteous must go to the grave, as did our Lord himself. The KJV correctly chooses the English word that fits the context.
The KJV is also correct in translating "ישובו" (yashuvu) as "shall be turned" rather than "return" as in the NIV1984, ESV and NASB. It does not make sense for a person to "return" to the grave or hell because no person would have been there before, unless such a person had reincarnated. This is a dangerous doctrine. The NKJV, TNIV, NIV2011 and NLT correctly translate the word as "go down" or its equivalent.
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