Is it hell, sheol, or realm of the dead? Or, could it just mean ‘the grave’? In the original language, it is שאול
It seems that there were two words in Hebrew that dealt with the place commonly known as sheol. The other Hebrew word was 'qe’ber' (pronounced ke-boo-raw, I think). That is the word that simply meant the grave, where corpses rotted, and where there was no conscious awareness. However, the other Hebrew word 'sheol' was where the spirits of the dead went to. Qe’ber was viewed as the entrance into the realm of the dead, so it was directly connected to it, but the entrance was only where corpses were deposited and left to rot. The invisible spirit part of the deceased proceeded into the realm of the departed dead – sheol. In English, sheol is often translated as hell, but sometimes attention is not paid to this word qe’ber, when it is only the grave that is being referred to.
Many Jewish people do not believe in hell, others do (just as in Christianity some Christians believe in hell as a place of torment, and others do not). But history holds records about various ideas on the after-life in Jewish thought as in "The Life And Times of Jesus The Messiah" by Alfred Edersheim (1971) Appendix XIX, On Eternal Punishment, according to the Rabbis and the New Testament" (see vol. II Book V ch. vi):
"... For the views held at the time of Christ, whatever they were,
must have been those which the hearers of Christ entertained; and
whatever those views, Christ did not, at least directly, contradict
or, so far as we can infer, intend to correct them... the first
Rabbinic utterances come to us from the time immediately before that
of Christ, from the Schools of Shammai and Hillel. The former arranged
all mankind into three classes: the perfectly righteous, who are
'immediately written and sealed to Gehenna'; and an intermediate
class, 'who go down to Gehinnom, and moan, and come up again,'... The
careful reader will notice that this statement implies belief in
Eternal Punishment on the part of the School of Shammai...
"Substantially the same, as regards Eternity of Punishment, is the
view of the School of Hillel... In regard to sinners of Israel and of
the Gentiles it teaches, indeed, that they are tormented in Gehenna
for twelve months, after which their bodies and souls are burnt up and
scattered as dust under the feet of the righteous; but it
significantly excepts from this number certain classes of
transgressors 'who go down to Gehinnom and are punished there to ages
of ages.'...But since the Schools of Shammai and Hillel represented
the theological teaching in the time of Christ and His Apostles, it
follows that the doctrine of Eternal Punishment was that held in the
days of our Lord, however it may afterwards have been modified... The
doctrine of the Eternity of Punishments seems to have been held by the
Synagogue throughout the whole first century of our era."
This is confirmed in "Josephus' Discourse to the Greeks Concerning Hades" as in "The Works of Josephus" translated by William Whiston, 1980, page 637:
"Now as to Hades, wherein the souls of the righteous and unrighteous
are detained, it is necessary to speak of it. Hades is... a
subterraneous region... angels are appointed as guardians to [souls]
who distribute to them temporary punishments."
Then it goes on to describe another part called "the Bosom of Abraham" with a chaos, deep and large, fixed between it and the place of darkness. Souls are in either one part, or the other, awaiting the resurrection of all men from the dead.
Thus, when we read what Jesus said about the rich man who died then found himself in hell, in torments, and to Lazarus dying and finding himself in the Bosom of Abraham, in bliss, it all makes perfect sense. Jesus was speaking to their beliefs about punishment after physical death, or to bliss in the Bosom of Abraham (Luke 16:19-31). Jesus did not say those beliefs were wrong. He went right along with them. The Greek word for Hades links into this subject as Psalm 16:10 is also quoted in the New Testament, in Acts 2:27--"Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell (Hades), neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption." These two passages (Psalm 16:10 and Acts 2:27) demonstrate that the Old Testament term "Sheol" is equivalent to the New Testament term "Hades."
Conclusion: The Hebrew sheol is correctly translated as hell, and could equally correctly be given the non-literal translation, ‘realm of the dead’. But as it is the soul [Hebrew nephesh] that is being spoken of, and not the body, it cannot be translated as ‘the grave’. Psalm 16:10 does not refer to a body corrupting in the grave. It is a soul in sheol (or, hell, or the realm of the dead).