5 Reasons to Reject the Belief of Eternal Punishment in Hell

Blogger Benjamin L. Corey, of Formerly Fundie, posted an excellent list of reasons why many believers reject the idea of eternal punishment in hell.

Hell via Benjamin L. Corey

His post begins:

More and more Christians are beginning to reject the traditional view of hell which states the unjust will experience “eternal, conscious torment”.

Perhaps you’ve seen this change in the Christian landscape and grown confused as to why so many of us are experiencing shifting beliefs. While my Letting Go of Hell series goes further in-depth on many issues surrounding hell, here are 5 key reasons to help you understand why we are rejecting the notion of “eternal, conscious torment”:

You can read Corey’s entire post at Formerly Fundie:

5 Reasons Why More Christians Are Rejecting The Traditional View of Hell

Image credit via Benjamin L. Corey
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15 Responses to 5 Reasons to Reject the Belief of Eternal Punishment in Hell

  1. Chas says:

    Tim. The answer is simple: an eternal hell in which people suffer is imcompatible with a God who is gentle, kind and loving, and who works to minimize suffering here on earth.

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    • jesuswithoutbaggage says:

      Chas, the answer is simple; but so many have a concept of hell that is encrusted with tradition and ‘doctrine’ that is it is often difficult to see the simple answer.

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      • Marc says:

        Tim,
        I am fully convinced that the pagan concept of natural immortality of the soul, so prevalent in the Greco-Roman world of the early Church, led to the so called traditional understanding of hell. The revelation of Holy Scripture makes it clear that immortality is a gift of God, and He can withhold it by destroying both body and soul in the lake of fire (see Matthew 10:28).

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  2. gallbladder says:

    Are Heaven and Hell both based on the same concept of a place for the “spirit or soul is eternal ? so if you reject one do you reject the other ? do you reject both ? and there fore just take the core of jesus teachings as a guide for treating your fellow man Confused again since jesus talks about heaven ? My old Catholic concepts that heaven was a reward for living a live that was positive Help ? thanks tim

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    • jesuswithoutbaggage says:

      GB, I don’t think eternal life, or ‘heaven’, is a reward for being good. I believe the Father offer’s all of us eternal life of peace and happiness; but there is no room for one person oppress another. If someone wishes to take advantage of others they will not be comfortable in a place where they cannot do that. So there might be some who choose not to accept eternal life under those conditions.

      I don’t think rejecting the idea of eternal punishment means we must reject the idea of eternal peace and happiness.

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  3. Tiffani says:

    This was a very insightful read. Especially his fifth point; I had never considered disbelief in the existence of hell from that angle before. Thanks for sharing!

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    • jesuswithoutbaggage says:

      I am glad you liked his post, Tiffani. I am pleased to share it with my readers. I really identify with the fifth point; how can a loving God be more cruel and unfeeling than I am? And I think this is true of most people–they are much to empathetic than to torture someone for eternity.

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      • If I get into a discussion nowadays with someone who believes in eternal hell, I just agree with them – and then tell them I’ve decided to go to hell, because I wouldn’t really want to spend an eternity with a God that would create such a place. One person told me to be careful what I say, so I started dancing, singing “I’m going to hell”. I think that would make a great hymn.

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        • jesuswithoutbaggage says:

          David, you have a good point: Why would we want to associate with a being that delights in torment and torture? Normal, healthy people would never torture a person like that or approve of someone who did. When we claim that God will torture people, it reflects on God and keeps many people from accepting such a monster.

          The description of your little dance was comical. I am sure it scared the daylights our of your discussion partner and they now know ‘for sure’ you are going to hell. I can’t see myself using such a shock tactic, but I can see how it could happen with a possessed person like you–I mean a person possessed of a personality to get peoples attention, or drive home a point, through exaggerated and unexpected means. 🙂

          You made me chuckle. I hope your performance made a positive impact on them.

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  4. Gabriel says:

    I don’t understand why people think God wouldn’t punish bad behavior. All through out the old testament that was demonstrated (Noah’s Ark, Saul,Adam & Ever..etch). And as far as torture what about poor faithful Job? Where will the evil spirits live and what happens to people like Hitler? Maybe the concept of heaven and hell may have a different twist than traditional thinking; however it doesn’t mean the existence of hell is completely fabricated.

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