I seriously wonder how many folks have seriously wondered what Jesus actually had to say about ‘hell’ and ‘eternity’. A cursory examination of the subject in the original Biblical languages will probably confuse most and make them want to head for the hills. Just start with aion/aionion for fun.
The bottom line to me is, if there is such a ‘place/state’ as eternal torment in hell, than poor, insane Andrea Yates had it exactly right, her children are in heaven, and sorry, but all the rest of the eternal hell believers are B team player wanna be’s.
If eternal torment in hell is real, it seems we need only one page in the Bible which says, TURN OR BURN. I mean, why complicate matters.. especially when we’re talking about the eternal destiny of folks? (gee, thanks God!)
When did “if you eat you shall surely die” morph into “you shall surely burn forever and ever in the torments of an eternal hell”?
Some folks believe that universal reconciliation/redemption is an unBiblical, heretical, minority opinion… http://www.amazon.com/Universalism-Prevailing-Doctrine-Christian-Hundred…
I think what is fundamentally at issue here is the concept of free will. All I’ve seen the belief in a free will do in the evangelical community is give them the “right” to manipulate and pressure folks to come to an old-fashioned altar and “choose” Jesus.
The only issue to me is, what happens at The End? The scriptures on my website GreatestStoryTold.com bear out that GOD WINS in the end through Christ Jesus. Therefore, if there is a ‘hell’, it can not be ‘eternal’. My own journey into hell is linked there as well.