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The Big Question: Is Hell Real?

We’ve always had to grapple with the uncertainty of what awaits us after this life. If there exists the possibility of an eternity of peace, or is the opposite also true? Does Hell exist? It’s a question that philosophers, theologians and thinkers throughout the years have tried to answer.

We’ve always had to grapple with the uncertainty of what awaits us after this life. If there exists the possibility of an eternity of peace, or is the opposite also true? Does Hell exist? It’s a question that philosophers, theologians and thinkers throughout the years have tried to answer.

The Sun peeking from behind the clouds by a body of water.

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Steve Gregg, talk show host and author of Hell: Three Christian Views

“From the early church times, to the present, the nature of hell has been debated among Biblical scholars.  In the final analysis, hell—like all other theological topics—must be understood in the context of the character of God, revealed in Christ. The character of God defines His treatment of His adversaries—and His treatment of His adversaries defines His character. We should not be too hasty in settling our opinion on the matter.”


A foggy city.

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Carlton D. Pearson, minister and author of God Is Not a Christian, Nor a Jew, Muslim, Hindu

“Hell was never God’s intention. It is man’s invention.”

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Canyon with opposing sides.

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Marq de Villiers, author of Hell and Damnation

“Hell is just a state of mind, a radical separation from God.”


An open Bible.

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Micah J. Stephens, author of Hell Is Not For Real: Re-examining What The Scriptures Actually Say About Eternal Torment

“The word Hell in the Bible is a very poor translation of the original Hebrew and Greek words that speak of the resting place of the dead (Sheol and Hades) and a literal valley on the south side of Jerusalem (Gehenna) that became symbolic for judgment via an invading army (see Jeremiah 7 and 19). We see Jesus in the gospels speaking of Gehenna while in or around Jerusalem not long before Rome sacked and destroyed the city in AD 70. Eternal torment of the soul in the afterlife is not a concept that is found in Scripture at all.”

 


Single candle in the dark.

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Steve Yates, author of Hell Is Real: An Eyewitness Account

“Hell’s darkness is the very absence of God’s living, illuminating light.”


Massive crowd of people.

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Rob Bell, author and former pastor

“When people use the word hell, what do they mean? They mean a place, an event, a situation absent of how God desires things to be. Famine, debt, oppression, loneliness, despair, death, slaughter—they are all hell on earth. Jesus’ desire for his followers is that they live in such a way that they bring heaven to earth. What’s disturbing is when people talk more about hell after this life than they do about Hell here and now. As a Christian, I want to do what I can to resist hell coming to earth.”


Beautiful, natural scenery.

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C.S. Lewis, author and lay theologian

“Hell is a state of mind—ye never said a truer word. And every state of mind, left to itself, every shutting up of the creature within the dungeon of its own mind—is, in the end, Hell. But Heaven is not a state of mind. Heaven is reality itself. All that is fully real is Heavenly. For all that can be shaken will be shaken and only the unshakeable remains.”

 

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Woman sitting alone at the beach.

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John Milton, author of Paradise Lost

“The mind is its own place, and in itself can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven.”

 


A dark, stormy sky.

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Brian Jones, author of Hell Is Real (But I Hate to Admit It)

“The fact of the matter is: Hell is real. Deciding whether or not hell exists isn’t an intellectual exercise; it’s a matter of eternal life or death.”


Winter breath.

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Billy Graham, evangelist

“Heaven is real and hell is real, and eternity is but a breath away.”

 


People holding hands together.

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Alan W. Gomes, Professor of Theology at Biola University and author of 40 Questions About Heaven and Hell

“The Lord Jesus Christ spoke much more about hell than he did about heaven. We have it on his divine authority that hell involves eternal, conscious, freely-chosen separation from God. And yet, hell also showcases God’s unfathomable love for us. God’s only son, in a stupendous act of self-sacrifice, endured that pain of separation from his Father on the cross in our place, reconciling to God all who receive him in childlike faith.”

 


Two paths leading to opposite directions.

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J.I. Packer, theologian

“Hell appears as God’s gesture of respect for human choice. All receive what they actually chose, either to be with God forever, worshipping him, or without God forever, worshipping themselves.”

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