Jesus' Visit To The Gates Of Hell At Caesarea Philippi MATTHEW 16:13-20
In MATTHEW Chapter 16 Jesus takes his disciples on a forty-mile hike from Capernaum on the Lake of Galilee up north to Caesarea Philippi - a place notorious for immorality and idolatry.
His disciples must have wondered why on earth he was taking them into enemy territory and in particular to a place known as The Gates of Hell (Hades).
The Gates Of Hell (also known as The Gates of the Gods)
The place got its name from the enormous cave at the base of Mount Hermon with an almost bottomless pool associated with the worship of the Roman god Pan - half man, half goat and the origin of the satanic Baphomet worshipped still today by witches, pagan worshippers and satanists.
In front of the cave were numerous shrines to other pagan gods and godesses with their own statues in niches cut into the rockface or worshipped in elaborate temples as shown in the illustration below. There was also a temple dedicated to the Emperor Augustus, who was worshipped as a god.
Temples at Panium - the ancient Banias - in front of The Gates of Hell Photo: © Rick Barker
A Clash Of Kingdoms
The Entrance to The Gates of Hell: Pan's Grotto Photo: © Rick Barker used with kind permission
The disciples could not have imagined Jesus would take them to the very Gates of Hell, but he did because he had an important message to give them and a question to ask them.
NOTE: The Separation of the Sheep & the Goats on The Day of Judgement MATTHEW 25:31-46
It's interesting to note that Jesus said that on The Day of Judgement, God will separate the Sheep - his children - from the Goats. The sheep will be welcomed into heaven and everlasting bliss, while the goats will be consigned to hell and the domain of old "Goat Face" - satan himself. What a strange 'coincidence' that the worshippers of satan worshipped a so-called god with the head of a goat!