One of the most blessed truths I thank God for is the fact that His Word does not teach that people will suffer for all eternity in an ever-burning “hell.” I thank Him that those who ultimately reject Him will suffer eternal death, not a torturous eternal life. And while I might write more on this in a future post (as in, why I believe this), it isn’t this fact that motivates my writing this morning.
As I meditate on it, I find myself wondering if I am more thankful for the truth that there will be no eternal torment, or if I am actually more thankful for the fact that I have been blessed to know that truth. Do you understand what I am (clumsily, perhaps) trying to say?
For those who do sincerely and wholeheartedly believe that God has created a place where those who die unsaved (allowing “unsaved” to mean whatever their faiths tell them for the sake of discussion) are mercilessly tormented in untold agony for eternity — making only billions and billions of years of agony seem like a vacation on the beach — how are they able to function?
I mean, forget the numerous billions — the vast majority of humans who have ever walked the earth — who have lived and died without even hearing the name of Jesus Christ and who are therefore consigned to eternal anguish (a thought which makes the “save everybody now” version of “God” seem incompetent or capricious at best and sadistic at worst). If they have someone very close to them (say, a beloved grandmother, or sibling, or best friend) who died in an “unsaved” state, how do they live day in and day out knowing that their special someone is facing yet another day of torment so horrific that it would exceed the limits of imagination?
What is the key to surviving such a belief? How do those who believe this way live life from day to day? What are their thoughts when they pray to the God whom they are supposed to call “Dad”? How do they interact with those around them who are only a breath away from such a fate?
I am currently working on a telecast to offer our booklet “Is This the Only Day of Salvation?” and these thoughts have been on my mind. Comments are welcome (as long as you don’t mind being moderated, per the comment policy).