“DEBUNKING FAITH BUSTERS”
Part 6: What About Hell? How can a loving God send people to hell?
I. MANY PEOPLE STRUGGLE WITH THE CONCEPT OF HELL. THREE UNSCRIPTURAL BELIEFS:
- Annihilationism – unbelievers cease to exist.
- Universalism – everyone eventually ends up in heaven.
- Reincarnation – people keep coming back as someone or something else until they get it right.
Why are people often repulsed by the idea of hell?
The fact that we don’t like the concept of hell doesn’t mean hell doesn’t exist. The issue isn’t do I like the concept of hell, but is the concept of hell true?
II. QUESTIONS ABOUT HELL: Is there really a hell? If so, why? What is it like? Is it eternal? Is hell a place of torture?
III. SCRIPTURES ABOUT HELL (Matt. 8:12; 25:41, 46; Mark 9:43-48).
IV. COMMON OBJECTIONS TO THE CONCEPT OF HELL:
- “Hell is Repulsive.” That doesn’t mean it’s not real.
- “Hell is Unjust.” Is it? On what basis do you think so? Hell is necessary because God is just and therefore there must be appropriate consequences for sin and injustice.
- “Hell is Overkill.” Is it? On what basis do we decide this? We tend to minimize sin (Ps. 51:4). Hell is proportionate (Matt. 11:21-24; Lk. 12:47-48; Rev. 20:12).
- Hell is a Torture Chamber. Is it? The Bible uses apocalyptic langue and imagery to make a theological point (Heb. 12:29; Rev. 5:6; 19:15).
V. HELL MAKES SENSE!
- Hell is life without God’s presence and grace.
- Hell is the outworking of mankind’s choice to totally experience total autonomy from God (James 1:17).
- God doesn’t send people to hell as much as people choose to go there. Whose will is sovereign in your life?
- God doesn’t enjoy punishing people in hell (Ezek. 33:11).
- God doesn’t want anyone to perish (2Pet. 3:3-4, 9).