Hell revisited

Five years ago, the topic of hell was probably the most discussed doctrine in evangelical circles, following the publication of Rob Bell’s Love Wins. In Love Wins Bell speculated a more hopeful version of CS Lewis’ The Great DivorceIt was nearly but not quite universalism.

That debate has died down but it has not gone away and nor will it. However evangelicals have mostly rejected universalism and have instead opted for one of two main approaches: eternal conscious torment or annihilationism. Neither sound good.

Preston Sprinkle has hosted a number of debates on his blog about the issue and I thought it worth drawing attention to that.

First he had Joshua Ryan Butler do a three parter that is well worth the read

  1. The Mercy of Hell – I think this line is especially helpful ‘We get hell wrong because we get heaven and earth wrong.’
  2. The Surprise of Judgement – ‘God turning the tables on our expectations is one of the primary things we should expect.’
  3. The Hope of Holy War – ‘God arising on behalf of the weak against the tyranny of the strong when it’s raged for far too long.’

Preston himself did a four parter on the subject

  1. Is Annihilation an Evangelical Option?
  2. Biblical Support for Annihilation
  3. Biblical Arguments for Eternal Conscious Torment
  4. My Terminal Blog on the Terminal Punishment of Hell

It turns out it wasn’t his terminal blog on the subject at all as he returned to the theme this year with this five-part debate between Chris Date & Jerry Shepherd

  1. In Defense of the Eternal Conscious Torment View of Hell
  2. The Case for Conditionalism
  3. Conscious in Death: A Response to Jerry Shepherd
  4. Why Annihilation Is Wrong
  5. Jerry Shepherd’s Second Rebuttal to Chris Date
  6. Chris Date’s Second Rebuttal to Jerry Shepherd
  7. What Do You Believe About Hell?
  8. The Last Word on Hell

Hopefully, if you process that lot you will have enough resource to do your own study and come to your conclusion on what the Bible teaches about hell.


Photo by Thomas Hawk

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