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 How can a God of love.......

Thought I would out the question before the forum. How can a God of love send people to a literal, eternal burning hell? Do the scriptures teach that hell is eternal? Do the scriptures teach all will be saved?

Personally I hold to the traditional view that hell is eternal and reserved for those who do not accept Christ. But I am willing and open to discuss this.

Please, I ask this to be a round table discussion. I believe the issues of hell and universalism need to be discussed in light of the impact of the Rob Bell book on the church. Please observe the SI rules and guidelines. My prayer is this thread can lead to some fruitful discussion and understanding of the scriptures.

Let us be respectful of one another. I would like to hear from the forum on this issue.

My reason for opening up this thread is a brother I once respected has now turned toward universal salvation. He says hell is a temporary place of punusment. All will be saved.

What are your thoughts? What does the Bible teach?

Blaine Scogin

 2013/10/6 18:48

Joined: 2006/7/31
Posts: 3057

 Re: How can a Gid of love.......

Greetings Bear

Here are some scriptures that speak to the teaching that "all will be saved" I have also shared some that speak to the truth of hell being eternal.

Then Jesus went through the towns and villages, teaching as he made his way to Jerusalem. Someone asked him, “Lord, are only a few people going to be saved?” He said to them. “Make every effort to enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able to. Once the owner of the house gets up and closes the door, you will stand outside knocking and pleading, ‘Sir, open the door for us.’ But he will answer, ‘I don’t know you or where you come from.”
Luke 13:22-25

“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.”
Matthew 7:13 & 14

God is just: He will pay back trouble to those who trouble you and give relief to you who are troubled, and to us as well. This will happen when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with his powerful angels. He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the majesty of his power on the day he comes to be glorified in his holy people and to be marveled at among all those who have believed. This includes you, because you believed our testimony to you.
2 Thessalonians 1:6-10

In Revelation 14:11 it says, “The smoke of their torment rises forever and ever.” Revelation 20:10 says, “There is no rest day or night.”

Matthew 25:46 “They will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.”

“As the weeds are pulled up and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of the age. The Son of man will send out his angels and they will weed out of the kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil. They will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of the Father. He who has ears, let him hear.”
Matthew 13:40-43

“Throw that worthless servant outside into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”
Matthew 25:30

“If anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to be thrown into the sea with a large millstone tied around his neck. If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off, for it is better for you to enter into life maimed than with two hands and to go to Hell where the fire never goes out.”
Mark 9:42

“…the worm does not die and the fire is not quenched.”
Mark 9:48

Here is something to consider from a teaching I read a long time ago.

" Jesus spoke far more about Hell than He did about Heaven. Jesus spoke more about Hell than virtually any other subject during His time here on earth. He wanted to make Hell very clear to us. I think you can see how it would be an injustice to withhold such a prominent part of Jesus’ teaching. If we don’t bring that truth to you in about the same proportion that Jesus did, we really wouldn’t be “walking as Jesus walked.” “Knowing the fear of the Lord we persuade men,” were the words of Paul. He certainly had a crystal clear understanding of what it was he was dealing with."

" I am sure that, intellectually, most of us believe in the fairy-tale version of Hell, but being able to hear and understand with the ears of our heart the screams of agony of millions of people that are in torment right now, is harder to grasp. To actually believe that they are in the torment of Hades, in the fire of torment right now, is a little bit hard to relate to. But it is happening. And those who are full of faith, full of the Holy Spirit will understand and be able to actually hear those screams, and it will motivate them to tell others."


God bless

 2013/10/6 21:32Profile

Joined: 2009/4/5
Posts: 2010
Joplin, Missouri


Mary Jane, here are some more as well

The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

Mat 10:28 And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.

Mat 13:50 And shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.

Way too many very plain references for any honest person to believe that hell is anything but a place of judgment and that this judgment is final and permanent.


 2013/10/6 21:54Profile

Joined: 2006/7/31
Posts: 3057


Greeting Twayneb

you shared Mat 13:50 And shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.


I always am reminded of something that was shared with me once, if hell is not eternal and those who are cast in are instantly destroyed how can there be wailing and gnashing of teeth. If someone is destroyed they can not wail or gnash their teeth because they would be no more...

Thank you for sharing
God bless

 2013/10/6 22:08Profile

Joined: 2002/12/11
Posts: 37703
"Pilgrim and Sojourner." - 1 Peter 2:11


Here is a sobering message on this very important topic:

Hell, What Is It Like? by David Wilkerson

an article: The Mental Agonies Of Hell by Robert Murray M'Cheyne

We also had a LONG series of posts on the eternal punishment of hell many years ago before it has been questioned by many popular evangelicals. I believe this is a serious sober topic that needs to be considered.

We must never put human reasoning above the Word of God.

SI Moderator - Greg Gordon

 2013/10/6 22:43Profile


MaryJane and Twayneb thank you for the good verses. Very thought provoking. Greg than you for the links. Lord willing, will check them out.


 2013/10/6 23:26

 Re: How can a God of love.......


The question should be asked, "How can a God of Love allow Lucifer and sinners (unregenerate men) to abide in heaven. If you ask the question that way, you will have your answer. Because He is love, He will not allow Satan and sinners to abuse loving people. That is done on earth for the sinner's sake, but it will not continue in heaven.

 2013/10/6 23:37

Joined: 2011/11/11
Posts: 710
San Diego


Over the years I have heard many bring up this human dilemma, how could a loving God consign anyone to an eternal Hell. It sets the terms of the discussion putting God on the defensive, and invites human emotion to rule the discussion.

How about a little rephrase?

How could a violent and selfish human being ever expect anyone to care about his eternal destiny? God should mind His own business and let them do what they want!

Man has cleverly devised a strategy for this already. Since he wants his own way, wants to set the terms, control the outcomes, and live in praise of his own happiness- he invented religion!

That way there can be a God, any god, and we build a little place for him that is in view, but not in the way. We decide what he can do, what he can't do, what he would say, how he will help me get what I want, and how I can buy him off if I decide he is angry with me.

So the natural state of man and god is emotionally driven idolatry. I let him pretend to be god, but in reality I am perfectly capable of being god all by myself, thank you very much.

No wonder He who sits in the heavens laughs, on one level it is highly amusing. On another, cold dead serious. Man does not make the rules, a holy and loving real God does. He who ordered the universe and designed all the participants both living and incapable of life makes decisions according to the laws of nature and the laws of His character.

We will be ill served if we twist His Word to serve our own emotional needs, and fail to recognize that we are His doing, His property, subject to His law and authority.

God offers Salvation out of that profound love, but by His own admission He cannot save those who refuse a free gift. He does not send people to eternal Hell, He saves people from it. In reality, people needlessly send themselves to Hell.

Tom Cameron

 2013/10/6 23:51Profile

Joined: 2011/11/11
Posts: 710
San Diego


I guess Just-in and I were thinking and typing in some pretty cool unity!

Tom Cameron

 2013/10/6 23:55Profile


Amen, sidewalk. Ultimately, we will all dwell with the (F)father whose nature we have. Kin will be together. It would be kidnapping on God's part to take one of Satan's kin when Satan has legal ownership.

Some would say today, that "no, Satan does not have legal ownership anymore since Christ died for all men". Yet, we become children of God by exercising faith in and towards Christ, the same way that many become children of Satan by unbelief (not having faith in Christ).

People like to say today that we are all children of God, but what saith the Scriptures?

Gal_3:26 For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.

 2013/10/7 1:22

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