696. Such is the equilibrium of all things in the other life in both general and particular that evil punishes itself, so that in evil there is the punishment of evil. It is the same with falsity, which returns upon him who is in the falsity. Hence everyone brings punishment and torment upon himself, and rushes at the same time among the diabolical crew who inflict such torment. The Lord never sends anyone to hell, but would lead all away from hell, and still less does He lead into torment. But as the evil spirit rushes into it himself, the Lord turns all the punishment and torment to good, and to some use. No penalty is ever possible unless the Lord has in view some end of use; for the Lord's kingdom is a kingdom of ends and uses. But the uses which the infernals can perform are the lowest uses; and when they are engaged in them they are not in so much torment, but on the cessation of the use they are sent back into hell.