Hell: Real and Freely Chosen

2 comments on “Hell: Real and Freely Chosen”

  1. Jacques Richard Pierre-Pierre Reply

    Thanks for your text ! It’s a pleasure to read you as always
    I am a Christian, I am a believer not only because I was raised catholic but also because I experienced God’s favors in my life. But for those who are struggling to believe, for those that consider leaving righteously to be more of an uncomfortable experience, wouldn’t it be better or easier for them to really understand the seriousness of the threat that HELL represents had they have a clear vision. I mean, it could be that the scriptures is not relaying the PICTURE CLEARLY ENOUGH.

    • Allison Reply

      Sorry for the delayed reply but I am just now aware of this comment!
      Thank you for the question.

      I would argue that Scripture is very clear about hell at least in the sense that it is eternal pain and suffering. Jesus refers to hell many times including emphasizing the fact that this eternal misery will be chosen by many. He makes it clear that those who disobey God or reject God or who hate God and their neighbor are choosing a path that, if they continue on it until death, will lead to hell.
      I admit that even though the reality of hell is evident in the Bible as are the agonizing pains of hell, it is true that we do not see a long detailed discussion on hell. But one reason this is the case is because Jesus and the Apostles did not rely solely on the Written Word of God to instruct us. The primary method of teaching for Jesus and the Apostles was orally. And so this is why the Sacred Traditions of the Church (which includes both the Written Word of God as well as the oral teachings handed down to us from Christ) cover hell more extensively.

      But even if someone solely used Scripture, the evidence is there but I believe the problem is that too many people overlook or ignore the revelations about hell.

      But as yuu mention, it is important for people to be aware of hell and even fear this if that is the motivation they need to turn away from sin.
      The Church points out that there are two primary motivations for repentance of sins: (1) fear of the consequences (hell) (2) sorrow for offending God. The former is an imperfect form of contrition and the second is a perfect form of contrition. The hope is that when we turn from sin it is completely because we love God, are truly sorry for offending Him and we want to be with Him for eternity. But even if a person turns away from sin because of fear of hell, though this is an imperfect motive, AT LEAST THEY ARE TURNING FROM SIN AND TO GOD! And this is actually one reason I wrote the article. To remind people that hell is real. Now is the time of grace. We are given a limited time on earth to choose God and His love. Sin is an obstacle to love of God and if we continue in a life of sin, we are making a choice that will impact our eternal destiny. And so as we see in the Old Testament words of Moses (Deut 30:15-20): “Today I set before you life and death, blessing and curse, therefore choose life so that you and your descendants may live!” Each day God sets before us these same two choices: eternal life or eternal death.

      God bless

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