Apparently it was an early church belief as Jesus' descent into hell or Hades is confessed in creeds (developed to combat heresy) believed to either have been influenced by the Nicene Council or to have originated in 5th century Gaul. The Roman Catholics, Church of England, Lutheran, and Presbyterian churches still confess it in their creeds. Curiously the Methodists removed it from theirs.
"Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, 'Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?'
And I said, 'Here am I. Send me!'"