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The Necessity Of Hell


Eugene39
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A fundie friend of mine posted this completely disgusting article on Facebook.

 

We must remember why God’s wrath is necessary to make sense of the Bible, the cross, and our growth in godliness.

 

We need the doctrine of eternal punishment. Time and time again in the New Testament we find that understanding divine justice is essential to our sanctification. Believing in God’s judgment actually helps us look more like Jesus. In short, we need the doctrine of the wrath of God.

 

First, we need God’s wrath to keep us honest about evangelism. Paul reasoned with Felix about righteousness, self-control, and the coming judgment (Acts 24:25). We need to do the same. Without the doctrine of hell, we are prone to get involved in all sorts of important God-honoring things, but neglect the one thing that matters for all eternity, urging sinners to be reconciled to God.

 

Second, we need God’s wrath in order to forgive our enemies. The reason we can forgo repaying evil for evil is because we trust the Lord’s promise to repay the wicked. Paul’s logic is sound. “Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: ‘It is mine to avenge; I will repay,’ says the Lord” (Rom. 12:19). The only way to look past our deepest hurts and betrayals is to rest assured that every sin against us has been paid for on the cross and or will be punished in hell. We don’t have to seek vigilante justice, because God will be our just judge.

 

Third, we need God’s wrath in order to risk our lives for Jesus’ sake. The radical devotion necessary to suffer for the word of God and the testimony of Jesus comes, in part, from the assurance we have that God will vindicate us in the end. That’s why the martyrs under the throne cry out “How long, Sovereign Lord, holy and true, until you judge the inhabitants of the earth and avenge our blood?” (Rev. 6:10) They paid the ultimate price for their faith, but their blood stained cries will be answered one day. Their innocence will be established when God finally judges their persecutors.

 

Fourth, we need God’s wrath in order to live holy lives. Paul warns us that God cannot be mocked. We will reap what we sow. We are spurred on to live a life of purity and good deeds by the promised reward for obedience and the promised curse for disobedience. If we live to please the flesh, we will reap destruction from God. But if we live to please the Spirit, we will reap eternal life (Gal. 6:6-7). Sometimes ministers balk at the thought of motivating people with the threat of eternal punishment. But wasn’t this Jesus’ approach when he said “Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell” (Matt. 10:28)? Sometimes we need to literally scare the hell out of people.

 

Fifth, we need God’s wrath in order to understand what mercy means. Divine mercy without divine wrath is meaningless. Only when we know that we were objects of wrath (Eph. 2:3), stood condemned already (John 3:18), and would have faced hell as God’s enemies were it not for undeserved mercy (Rom. 5:10), can we sing from the heart “Amazing grace, how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me!”

 

Sixth, we need God’s wrath in order to grasp how wonderful heaven will be. Jonathan Edwards is famous (or infamous) for his sermon “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God.” It’s still read in American Literature classes, usually as a caricature of the puritanical spirit of colonial New England. But few people realize that Edwards also preached sermons like “Heaven is a World of Love.” Unlike most of us, Edwards saw in vivid colors the terror of hell and the beauty of heaven. We can’t get a striking picture of one without the other. That’s why the depiction of the heavenly New Jerusalem also contains a warning to the cowardly, unbelieving, vile, immoral, idolaters, and liars whose place is in “the fiery lake of burning sulfur” (Rev. 21:8). It’s unlikely we will long for our final salvation if we don’t know what we are saved from.

 

Seventh, we need the wrath of God in order to be motivated to care for our impoverished brothers and sisters. We all know the saying that Christians are so heavenly minded they are of no earthly good. The idea is that if all we think about are heaven and hell we’ll ignore ministries of compassion and social justice. But what better impetus for social justice than Jesus’ sober warning that if we fail to care for the least of our brothers we will go away to eternal punishment (Matt. 25:31-46)? The wrath of God is a motivator for us to show compassion to others, because without love, John says, we have no eternal life, and if we don’t share our material possessions with those in need we have no love (1 John 2:17).

 

Eighth, we need God’s wrath in order to be ready for the Lord’s return. We must keep the lamps full, the wicks trimmed, the houses clean, the vineyard tended, the workers busy, and the talents invested lest we find ourselves unprepared for the day of reckoning. Only when we fully believe in the coming wrath of God and tremble at the thought of eternal punishment will we stay awake, keep alert, and be prepared for Jesus to come again and judge the living and the dead.

 

Excerpted from Why We’re Not Emergent.

 

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Guest Valk0010

Religious people like to compare God to a parent. I will now do the same.

 

So does this means abusive parents are good parents.

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Talk about some thick Jeebus googles... ugh.gif

 

I am right and everyone who disagrees with me is going to hell because I am special and others aren't because Gawd loves me, but only my particular denomination, and even in that denomination probably not everyone because they don't raise their hands at the really touching worships songs so you know, they probably aren't going...

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Alright now. Now while most of us would like to see the wicked get punished for their crimes, no one deserves to suffer forever, no matter what crimes they've commited. Infinite punishment for finite sins is excessive punishment for anyone, even if they've committed crimes that'd make a serial killer puke. A truly merciful god would realize that compared to him, even the wisest and most brilliant of us would be as ignorant as a newborn compared to his knowledge and wisdom. A truly merciful god would take pains to show us the way to get along with each other in harmony, and to live fulfilling lives. Not through guessed at answers through prayer, but actually coming among us and teaching us face to face. Clergy would no doubt say that Jesus Christ did just that, but such is not the case. A god who truly cared for our happiness would send as many incarnations of himself as needed to be able to show all of humanity the way.

Supposedly, nothing is impossible to god right?

 

I find it mind boggling how the clergy cannot see how the idea of an all powerful god utterly demolishes the convoluted plans of salvation in Judaism, Christianity and Islam.

 

If there is a God, it certainly isn't any of the abrahamic gods. It takes infinite knowledge to be a supreme being, and the Abrahamic gods are as dumb as box of hammers.

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:Hmm: It just gets more and more bizarre. Make you want to find and create a whole Vulcan community, if it were possible. At they'd have some rational.
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Make you want to find and create a whole Vulcan community

If you have any ideas on how to do that, I'm all ears.

 

Oh, and more to the OP - we need God's wrath because God is a dick and this is how he demonstrates that.

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Make you want to find and create a whole Vulcan community

If you have any ideas on how to do that, I'm all ears.

 

:lol: That's good. Unfortunately, I have no idea, much less can I find my pointy ears.

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Still makes no sense, any of it. Because I am a rebel at heart anyway, I find it easy to say we did nothing wrong in the first place to deserve God's wrath. I didn't eat the stupid fruit, and I wouldn't have. I didn't ask to be born with a sinful nature but apparently I was anyway. Then I am supposed to feel guilty for something I have no control over, and thankful to god for saving me from something I still have no control over that he organised for me to have in the first place. It's all stupid, all of it.

 

I realised during my deconversion process that I wanted to be a christian because I wanted to be a good person and please god. I never really cared about heaven or hell or salvation or any of that shit. I just wanted to be close to god and do the right thing. I don't feel essentially sinful. the bible says that people love the darkness rather than the light, but I always loved the light, so I guess in some ways deep down I didn't believe all the punishment stuff applied to me. God and I were welded together and could never be separated.

 

In 1993 I got kicked out of a cult and I was told by the pastor that god had abandoned me, along with every single friend I had. I believed him. I quickly descended into clinical depression and OCD because I believed I was separated from god, in hell essentially. When the dust cleared I realised it was my own mind that sent me there, but still not being smart enough to walk away from such self abuse I spent another 10 years in a pentecostal church. When they abandoned me because I had sex outside marriage, and continued to hammer me towards suicide even when I begged them to stop I realised that the whole thing was complete and utter evil. All of this shit was killing me and making me crazy.

 

So I walked away, and in hindsight it was the best thing I could ever have done. I don't know if god is there, I suspect I have been talking to myself and having some kind of relationship with a deep buried part of myself I was unaware of. Truth is I don't care anymore. These days I wake up and I want to live, back then I wanted to die. I am finally free of neurosis, one sided relationships and pressure to conform to a thing I found ridiculous.

 

I still want to be a good person, but now I know it is on my own terms, and I am happy with that. God can keep his wrath, I consider myself innocent :)

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Excerpts:

We must remember why God’s wrath is necessary to make sense of the Bible, the cross, and our growth in godliness.

Non-believers are not required to remember any such thing, nor are they obligated to respect the “Bible” or the version of God that this person assumes as fact.

A cosmic absurdity is still absurd regardless of where it’s found.

 

We need the doctrine of eternal punishment. Time and time again in the New Testament we find that understanding divine justice is essential to our sanctification. Believing in God’s judgment actually helps us look more like Jesus. In short, we need the doctrine of the wrath of God.

Fear is the oldest tool of power.

Fear is needed as an authoritarian shortcut to provide obedience from slaves and serfs.

 

First, we need God’s wrath to keep us honest about evangelism. Paul reasoned with Felix about righteousness, self-control, and the coming judgment (Acts 24:25). We need to do the same. Without the doctrine of hell, we are prone to get involved in all sorts of important God-honoring things, but neglect the one thing that matters for all eternity, urging sinners to be reconciled to God.

There is precious little that is honest about evangelism because its based on the warped theological speculations of men in frocks, none of whom can prove anything concerning heaven or hell.

The rest is just window dressing designed to pick the pockets of the person targeted for conversion.

 

Third, we need God’s wrath in order to risk our lives for Jesus’ sake. The radical devotion necessary to suffer for the word of God and the testimony of Jesus comes, in part, from the assurance we have that God will vindicate us in the end.

What radical devotion and suffering has this person experienced?

This is Christian persecution complex on display.

The more you suffer on earth, the greater your reward in heaven.

 

Fourth, we need God’s wrath in order to live holy lives. Paul warns us that God cannot be mocked.

And Christianity, particularly Paul, sticks a big mocking middle finger up in the face of Yahweh.

It claims God’s regulations and statutes are not longer binding, having been done away with by a pagan (and illegal) human sacrifice.

 

Fifth, we need God’s wrath in order to understand what mercy means. Divine mercy without divine wrath is meaningless. Only when we know that we were objects of wrath (Eph. 2:3), stood condemned already (John 3:18), and would have faced hell as God’s enemies were it not for undeserved mercy (Rom. 5:10), can we sing from the heart “Amazing grace, how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me!”

It "saves" you from having to think.

You’d have to be a wretch indeed to swallow this carrot and stick approach to theology.

Many Christian wretches do enjoy the luxury of not having to think as much as their non-believing counterparts.

Their world becomes a black and white paradise for simpletons, where critical thinking is a sin.

 

Eighth, we need God’s wrath in order to be ready for the Lord’s return.

The “Lord” is about 2,000 years overdue and all the wrath in the universe can’t make that failure a success.

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Make you want to find and create a whole Vulcan community

If you have any ideas on how to do that, I'm all ears.

 

 

Excellent reply! - Live Long, and Prosper.

 

:lol: Others might not care for your posts much, George, but with a response like that, I like you. :D

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"It’s unlikely we will long for our final salvation if we don’t know what we are saved from."

 

Yep. This I found especially repulsive in the doctrine of Hell. When Xtians tried to scare people with Hell I have always felt many people are only Xtians to get saved from Hell. They are not really longing after salvation, Heaven or God - they just want to avoid Hell. Sounds like a good motive to be a Xtian, God can be proud of himself if he needs to scare people with eternal torment to make them love him. Seems like he knows there's nothing lovable in him otherwise....

 

I personally didn't feel I was evil and needed salvation before I got converted to Xtianity. I think a lot of people don't feel this, so Xtianity has to make them feel guilty and scare them with Hell in order to work on them. At least that was the case with me.

 

BTW, I have read Jehova's Witnesses don't believe in Hell. If someone dies evil he will just fade into nothingness. I think a doctrine like this makes God look a bit better - at least those who follow him believing this, are not doing so out of fear of Hell. I can't believe Xtians don't realize how the Hell doctrine makes their god look pretty low.

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What the author of the article writes can be so harmful to people. He praises the concept of eternal torture and believes it is Holy. He is engaged in the same thing I was and which almost all Christians are and that is taking the bible as true and then trying to defend its doctrines. But in trying to defend the doctrine of hell, the author may be hurting countless people if they take his words seriously.

 

The doctrine of hell is indefensible. Period.

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What the author of the article writes can be so harmful to people. He praises the concept of eternal torture and believes it is Holy. He is engaged in the same thing I was and which almost all Christians are and that is taking the bible as true and then trying to defend its doctrines. But in trying to defend the doctrine of hell, the author may be hurting countless people if they take his words seriously.

 

The doctrine of hell is indefensible. Period.

 

I always say,''Amen Brother!'' to you Overcame! :woohoo: Just comes out naturally! :shrug:

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eugene39,

 

A fundie friend of mine posted this completely disgusting article on Facebook??

How wonderful that you are still able to call him/her a friend!!

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The author of that facebook article seems to view people as little more than charcoal briquettes. Toss untold millions of humans on the flames of hell in order to "cook up" a great life for the tiny few who happen to be born in the right country in the right century to the right family who will brain wash them to believe primitive, outdated mythology.

 

People are just hunks of carbon to this writer. mere objects. That is his god. That is his "humanity."

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You know, there is only one hell I have seen all my life, despite growing up in a Fundamngelical home, and that is hell is right here on earth, created by human beings. I learned very early in life that it humans that make this place heaven or hell and with that, who needs a doctrine of hell? My mother and I had this conversation before, after I came out to her and when I told her that what I grew up with was hell, she said, "That's not hell. Hell is eternal." She has no idea of what eternal is either. Such abuse that is enabled by Fundamngelicals is a lifetime, because you have nightmares and flashback over it. It doesn't just go away when the one is FINALLY removed from it after 14 years of abuse and only 7 of those years one can remember clearly, with hints of memories that something was wrong before then. What 5 year old takes Ken, rapes Barbie, and scares her friend away because of it? Little things, both secular and religious can trigger horrific memories. Obviously, there was something wrong long before solid memories of horror at the age of 7 onward. I think I'll write on this topic for the blog eventually, but that kind of hell doesn't go away until death and even death won't end it, because there will always be a child who ends up going through something similar and that is an eternity that humans create.

 

So again, I ask, who needs the doctrine of hell when humans create it right here on earth? The only purpose it serves is to instill people, esp children with fear, just so they can be controlled, BUT if they have a fear of humans, trying to decipher who is a good human and who is a bad human, it is harder for that child to fall for such insanity. Such children grow up faster than most and aren't easily scared or controlled.

 

And with that, I leave you with one of my favourite Spong videos:

 

 

However, I do not believe in life after death, unlike Spong, but I do agree with him that hell was created to control people. If you have them scared enough, they will do almost anything you say.

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You know, there is only one hell I have seen all my life, despite growing up in a Fundamngelical home, and that is hell is right here on earth, created by human beings. I learned very early in life that it humans that make this place heaven or hell and with that, who needs a doctrine of hell? My mother and I had this conversation before, after I came out to her and when I told her that what I grew up with was hell, she said, "That's not hell. Hell is eternal." She has no idea of what eternal is either. Such abuse that is enabled by Fundamngelicals is a lifetime, because you have nightmares and flashback over it. It doesn't just go away when the one is FINALLY removed from it after 14 years of abuse and only 7 of those years one can remember clearly, with hints of memories that something was wrong before then. What 5 year old takes Ken, rapes Barbie, and scares her friend away because of it? Little things, both secular and religious can trigger horrific memories. Obviously, there was something wrong long before solid memories of horror at the age of 7 onward. I think I'll write on this topic for the blog eventually, but that kind of hell doesn't go away until death and even death won't end it, because there will always be a child who ends up going through something similar and that is an eternity that humans create.

 

So again, I ask, who needs the doctrine of hell when humans create it right here on earth? The only purpose it serves is to instill people, esp children with fear, just so they can be controlled, BUT if they have a fear of humans, trying to decipher who is a good human and who is a bad human, it is harder for that child to fall for such insanity. Such children grow up faster than most and aren't easily scared or controlled.

 

And with that, I leave you with one of my favourite Spong videos:

 

 

However, I do not believe in life after death, unlike Spong, but I do agree with him that hell was created to control people. If you have them scared enough, they will do almost anything you say.

 

Thanks Mriana for this! don't you just get tired of being one of the world's little 'robot's'? I do! Ps. I love listening to Spong. I have 4 of his books. He saved me from going out of my mind a few years ago with all this nonsense!

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Thomas Talbott gives some information regarding the Doctrine of Hell - and certain implications regarding the mind control element - in his book "The Inescapeable Love of God" (a book in which he argues the Universalist case both philosophically and Biblically) He states that many of the early Church Fathers were Universalists, and it was in fact taught by four of the six major Theological Colleges of the early Church. It was only decalred heretical by the EMPEROR Justinian 1 (not the Pope) in 543 AD. Apparently in those days the Emperor had more political clout than the Pope. Talbot does seem to suggest that Justinian had more than purely theological considerations in mind when he made his various decisions.

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eugene39,

 

A fundie friend of mine posted this completely disgusting article on Facebook??

How wonderful that you are still able to call him/her a friend!!

 

I went to Bible college with him for one year, and have seen him only a couple of times since in 18 years. It wouldn't take many more posts like that one for me to "un-friend" him or whatever they call it. Hell was something I was beat over the head with as a kid. I read the article in disbelief that someone could be so twisted in their thinking.

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The author of that facebook article seems to view people as little more than charcoal briquettes. Toss untold millions of humans on the flames of hell in order to "cook up" a great life for the tiny few who happen to be born in the right country in the right century to the right family who will brain wash them to believe primitive, outdated mythology.

 

People are just hunks of carbon to this writer. mere objects. That is his god. That is his "humanity."

 

And this is exactly the "humanity" of most christians I have known. Perhaps they have never read 1st Corinithians 13.

 

You always hit the nail on the head Oddbird in a way that resonates with me completely. You articulate yourself with a profound mixture of commonsense and compassion. Thanks for that.

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Thanks Mriana for this! don't you just get tired of being one of the world's little 'robot's'? I do! Ps. I love listening to Spong. I have 4 of his books. He saved me from going out of my mind a few years ago with all this nonsense!

 

You're welcome and yes I do get tired, but what I get more tired of is people spewing stupid superstitious religious stuff that has nothing to do with reality. I think I have almost all of Spong's books. :lol:

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Bravo Mriana. An eloquent statement on the darkest side of xianity.

 

Thank you.

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Ugh. I remember reading Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God in my high school lit class during our unit on The Scarlet Letter and believing it wholeheartedly. It messed with me just a smidge.

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