God as the Sovereign Lord is a rewarder of the good. As with the Lord God of his domain he rewards whatever good a man does so what is good should appreciate the worth of his demesne. For them He not only while in body, but also after their term of life is over, has reserved appropriate place as reward. Naturally in assigning a place for the good He also holds a similar place for the wicked. As in the case of the Parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus one is considered as a place for bliss the other is outer darkness. Everyone chooses his own place and to blame God for wrong choices and going ahead despite of good counsel to his destruction will not do.
In common and theological usage Hell or Sheol refers to the latter. It has another meaning which is hollow in his hand(Is.40:12). Like the immortal poet who wished epitaph for his life’s toil as though name written in water, signifying its futility, the word hollow is apt. How much more then shall be the rich fool in the Parable who felt smug for having stored up for life of luxury ever after? He had in the harum-scarum of making money quiet forgotten of death. For whom had he saved his riches then? It can be better understood from the passage quoted below:
“All darkness shall be hid in his secret places: a fire not blown shall consume him; it shall go ill with him that is left in his tabernacle(Jb.20:25)”. Heart of the wicked is full of darkness which is transferred to his handiwork and possessions. So when Jesus Christ states”For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also (Matt.6:21),” one can infer those who strive day and night to amass riches are losing something far more precious and what they earned shall not save them. So darkness of Sheol is literally a life- hollow and banal. The pomp and circumstance of the King of Babylon must have been for the proverbial worms who cannot quite appreciate what they feed on but would need ever more. It is what sheol does.
Prophet Isaiah in taking up his proverb against the king of Babylon(v.4) would add,” Hell from beneath is moved for thee to meet thee at thy coming: it stirreth up the dead for thee, even all the chief ones of the earth; it hath raised up from their thrones all the kings of the nations(vv.9-11). The worms have had so many kings and yet he is no different””Thy pomp is brought down to the grave, and the noise of thy viols:(v.11)”, It literally extends to accommodate in the face of growing godlessness!
Prophet Isaiah’s introduction of Lucifer as the son of morning does not make him having anything to do with God the Father of lights or God the Son qualified as the True Light. Satan is a Deceiver and here he is the deceiver of kings of the nations who equate their glory as true light. No these are will of the wisp passing for light in the eyes of the lost souls. Their pride has its origin in the angelic beings reserved for darkness(Jude.6). Lucifer is chief among them and for all those who rebel against God he is a stand in. “How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!/ For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven,… Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.(vv.12-15)
In recent history we have had the example of Hitler, the school drop-out and street agitator strutting as man of destiny. He set out for a thousand year reich. Did his claim of inflexible iron will deliver the promise? Merely 13 years and he died as fast as he rose from the rabble. While the fate of others serve as warning do we not see around us many agitators, intellectually deficient trying to foment unrest taking a lesson from him? We read of growing tide of anti-semitism in Europe and in the US. This cannot be accidental?
For them the verse 16-17 ought to give food for thought: “They that see thee shall narrowly look upon thee, and consider thee, saying, Is this the man that made the earth to tremble, that did shake kingdoms;/ That made the world as a wilderness, and destroyed the cities thereof; that opened not the house of his prisoners?”
God shall shatter haughty looks and make the proud crawl and lay them low and raise the humble and the meek inherit the earth in due time. In destroying Hitler Isaiah’s burden goes beyond the King of Assyria to include all those anti-semitic nations. What is God’s mountain but the mountain in the Gentile King’s vision? Daniel the Seer speaks about the end times but we shall come across God punishing the wicked and it is described colorfully as treading under foot. “For the Lord of hosts hath purposed, and who shall disannul it? and his hand is stretched out, and who shall turn it back?(v.27)”
“That I will break the Assyrian in my land, and upon my mountains tread him under foot: then shall his yoke depart from off them, and his burden depart from off their shoulders.(vv.18-27)