Monday, August 10, 2009

Hell, or no Hell? That is the question.

Before reading this post, go here.

Hell or no hell? A question that has sparked quite a bit of conversation amongst our small circle of three in the past hour or so. Just so that you get an idea of what i believe, I'm going to post my comment to this post on Lauren's Blog below, in italics. (i apologise to anyone who has already read this, just skip over it lol)

Yeah, I've been thinking about some of this lately, and to be honest I'm inclined to agree with you.
I mean think about it, we're told from a very young age that God loves all of us, each and every person who walks this earth and that he fogives us for our sins.
So if God loves each of us, why would he send us to hell if we didn't believe.And if he forgives each of us for our sins, why would he give us an eternal punishment? I don't think he would. Because he doesn't want to see any of us suffer. Wasn't that the entire point of the crucifixion of Christ? And if not... then that was a waste of Jesus' life, and he pretty much suffered for no reason.
This is actually part of my faith where I'm inclined to take into account the catholic beliefs of penance. Like where you serve a certian punishment...? Cos, while I don't think God would send us into eternal hell, I don't really expect to get off without being puniched for the sins i have committed in my life.
I've found that in the past few years, christianity is something I have struggled with an awful lot. Because I am a Christian, and I will be until the day I die, but there are a lot of things about christianity that do not sit right with me. And it's been the past few years where I suppose I've stopped being able to look at my faith in such a child-like, believing manner. And that's really challenged and changed some of the beliefs that I have.
Some of the nicest people I know are not Christians, and feel that they have seen too many awful things in their lives to believe in a god who loves and takes care of everyone. Some of the nicest people I know are not Christians because they have other beliefs. Or because they just don't understand christianity, or want to get involved.
Is God really going to punish these people for the things they have seen, or the way they have been brought up, or for having difficulty understanding a religion that quite frankly, even though I have been a christian my entire life, I don't even fully understand?
And looking on the other side of this arguement, some of the meanest, evilest people I know are Christians. Being a Christian doesn't automatically make you a good person, and I think a lot of people are misguided about that.
Christians arent automatically nice, and non-christians aren't automatically evil. I don't think that God would send nice, normal people to a prision infinite times worse than any man made prisions could be, for all of eternity.
God loves people too much for that. Doesn't he? That's what we've been told our entire lives right? So what is true? Does God love each of us unconditionally...? Or does he send people to an awful firey prision for not believing in him? And if it's the latter... Well, to be honest, that scares me.

Now, feel free to shut me down on any of this or what ever, but... To be honest, I don't understand how someone who is supposed to love us unconditionally, can send people to hell for not believing in him. I mean, it may just be me... but that seems like a condtion to me. Right? It's like him saying 'I love you unconditionally. As long as you........'

I mean, to be perfectly honest, at the moment, at the stage im at in my life and with my beliefs... I'd rather not believe in a God at all than believe in one who sends people to a place called hell... But I can't just stop believing in God, because that would be like getting up one morning and saying 'I no longer want to believe I have a sister' and just ignoring my sister for the rest of my life. She was there, she was a real part of my life for twelve years. i cant just imagine she doesnt exist.

And its the same with God. He is real. And I will never stop believing that. He has personally touched and impacted on my life. He has spoken to me, he has loved me, he has been my best friend...

But, I don't want to believe in hell.

I mean... The way I see it, to use the example from laurens blog, Hitler. I mean, I know hitler was a bad person. Quite possibly an evil person, if we go as far as to call others evil. You'd have to have been hiding under a rock not to know the destruction and devastation caused by Hitler. But I don't know if I believe that God would send him to hell. And I don't agree that he'd be forgiven only if he asked for it. I'm more inclined to believe that God would be like 'Yep, you've done some shit wrong (actually, he probably wouldnt swear... :S) you will be punished for that in _______ way. But I do forgive you, and i do love you and you will learn your lesson.'

A lot of what we're told in Christianity says that non-believers go to hell. But.. There are so so many good people who are non-believers. What about all those people who have always taken the time to care for others, who have tried to live good lives, but who don't believe in God...?

I dont know if I can be a part of something that says 'You don't believe what I believe so we're going to send you to a place infinite times worse than the worst place imaginable for the rest of eternity'

This is not to say that i know what im talking about. im just... very confused about what i believe...

Nawww... And its raining... :D


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