Hell Question

Discussions about the Bible, and any issues raised by Scripture.
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Re: Hell Question


Post by PaulSacramento » Fri Apr 01, 2011 6:12 am

It seems to me that "hell" is where the unrepentive sinners that openly choose to not be part of God's kingdom will go.
Especially within the context of revelations where we see that after 1000 years of peace and Christs' reign, Satan will be let loose again and there will be those that, even after 1000 years under the loving rule of Christ, will still rather "rule in hell than serve in heaven".
The parable of Lazarus and the rich man does seem to imply a certain penance even to the one that is repentive as the rich man certainly was, but as with any of Jesus' parables we need to understand that it is the message and not the total context of the parable that is vital for our understanding.
It is hard to reconcile a loving God with the eternal punishment of those that repent and see the errors of their ways and even wish to spare others from their fate, as was the case of the rich man.
I think Jesus' parable was that knowing the truth of what s right, having it preached to you and not doing it, will require a penalty to be paid, what the ultimate penalty is,of course, is up to God and Christ.

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Re: Hell Question


Post by drakengold » Fri Apr 01, 2011 8:36 am

I had always thought predestination was sometimes taught by Christians, and it implies the sovereignty of God. That everything He plans, He has power to make happen. That we only have limited free will. We can't do something that God doesn't permit us to do. Whatever we end up doing was in our future, waiting to become. It's like God writes the script for everything that happens. Of course, as present-time creatures, we don't feel everything being predestined. We have free will because we are acting in present-time. God sees our entire timeline, with our futures already planned by Him. I'm not a bible memorizer, and I can't quote bible and I don't know if my thinking is biblical. My take on Lamb's Book Of Life is from my reading Charles Stanley's book Eternal Security. He says the Book is written before foundation of the world, and that names don't get added or erased. That we can't lose our salvation, because God's pencil has no eraser. When I say we can't outsin God's grace, I mean we can sin a million times or more and we are still forgiven, that there is no limit to His grace. Again, I learn that from Charles Stanley. When I say worse sinners go to heaven, I mean you can be a murderer or rapist and still be washed by Jesus's blood and enter heaven, and lesser sinners who aren't that evil can go to hell just because they haven't received Jesus. I do believe sinners are loved by God, and I'm suggesting enemies are like people contrary to God's will, who are "unfriendly" to God, or not in the clique. Unsaved people see God as enemy, maybe God doesn't see them as enemy. Wages of sin sin is death, but isn't death just mean separation? Why must sinners suffer for eternity in torture, when a brief suffering would teach them their lesson? I assume a day in hell will make us want to long for God, and allow us to see our mistake. Christians claim people send themselves in hell, and why would anyone send themselves to a torture chamber? It seems more humane to let unrepentant sinners be separated from God forever.

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Re: Hell Question


Post by Canuckster1127 » Fri Apr 01, 2011 10:03 am

Hi Drakengold,

Most of your most recent post in the early portions reflects the premises of a specific "brand" of Christianity known as Calvinism. Calvinism is not the whole of Christianity and while it is certainly a dominant point of view within protestantism, moreso as of late in the US with the rise of neo-fundamentalism or neo-calvinism, there are other systems of understanding. Calvinism tends to fall in line with Greek determinism and stocism. In the end, it leads to some difficult issues to reconcile, including some that you touch upon. Evil in the context of an omnipotent God who has acted volitionally by commission or ommission shouldn't be possible. The explanations offered vary from semantic attempts to redefine evil and appeal to the gulf in perspective from God to Man, but it's a difficult thing to reconcile. Further, many Calvinists have to reconcile as well, the omnipotence and predestination of God with the will and responsibility of man.

One brand of Calvinism, often known as hyper-calvinism doesn't even try to reconcile this and just says that man effectively has no free will and God for his own reasons designates who will go to heaven and who will go to hell. Most Calvinists try to hold to the contradictory position that God does indeed predestine and control all this but then tries to assert the contradictory thought that man is still fully responsible for his own decision. The cognative dissonance of this is reconciled through some different arguments.

Your questions about hell obviously tie into this whole scenario and there are multiple different views about this as well. This is at the heart of a current uproar in evangelicalism over a book put our recently by Rob Bell called "Love Wins". You can find a thread about it here on the board as well.

I can discuss some of the other options and approaches to the issue with you if you like. My primary point is that your points are reflective of one particular "camp" within Christianity and evangelicalism, but it is not the only approach. In the end, the issue is what is true. But in examining the issues it doesn't hurt to understand what the different options are and what strengths or weaknesses they have in terms of the overall presentation of reality that they attempt to espouse.
Dogmatism is the comfortable intellectual framework of self-righteousness. Self-righteousness is more decadent than the worst sexual sin. ~ Dan Allender


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Re: Hell Question


Post by neo-x » Sat Apr 02, 2011 2:23 am

Drakengold, thank you for your reply, i understand now completely what you meant.

i think Canuckster1127 nailed it right to the point. Calvinism is often described as a "room without a door or window". those who are in, can not get out, those who are out can not get in. but the profound problem with the idea is that it implies everything is arranged and predestined, scripted, as you put it. however this is not true. Whosoever believes in Christ is saved. it is by choice and not divine imposed will, except in rare prophetic cases.
by PaulSacramento » Fri Apr 01, 2011 7:12 pm

It seems to me that "hell" is where the unrepentive sinners that openly choose to not be part of God's kingdom will go.
I agree, people who are so in love with sin and enjoy sin that they choose to not repent are probably gonna end up in hell.

Drakengold, I would humbly suggest that you rely more on God's words, keep studying books, but read the bible more and with some time you will come to your conclusions based on the Word of God. Books can be misleading sometimes, even if they are written by good authors with good intentions. spiritual experiences are not the same for everyone. they may vary substantially. I was misled while reading Benny Hinn's "Good morning Holy Spirit". My focus shifted from faith to physical signs and experiences. because even though the author may not have the intention to put it out there as a standard; to me who was entirely new to Christianity, it looked like a unspoken defacto standard.
It would be a blessing if they missed the cairns and got lost on the way back. Or if
the Thing on the ice got them tonight.

I could only turn and stare in horror at the chief surgeon.
Death by starvation is a terrible thing, Goodsir, continued Stanley.
And with that we went below to the flame-flickering Darkness of the lower deck
and to a cold almost the equal of the Dante-esque Ninth Circle Arctic Night


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Re: Hell Question


Post by kevdog19 » Sat May 28, 2011 7:45 pm

I believe that hell is heated by real material fire as heaven is heated with spirtual fire. The warmth in hell is hatred and the warmth in heaven is love.

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