Three weeks ago, the Easter cover of TIME Magazine asked the question, “What if there is no Hell?” The question was prompted by the release of "Love Wins: A Book About Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived", by popular pastor, Rob Bell, arguing that a loving God would never sentence human souls to eternal suffering—that in the end, love wins. (For a brilliant review of Love Wins, check out what George P. Wood had to say as well as his reviews on the book page at Amazon.com. Dr. Randy Alcon has written extensively about the controvery on his blog.)
I watched Rob Bell's promotional video for the book with my son. At the end, Nick said, "Wow, Dad, he asks some really good questions. He makes sense." I agree. Rob is a brilliant communicator. Then I had Nick read several passages of Scripture. He sat quietly for a while and said, "Dad, he totally contradicted the Bible!" It blew his mind because Rob had just been so convincing. Rob didn't fare so well either when he was put on the run by journalist, Martin Bashir.
In 2005, Newsweek ran a story that US troops in Guantanamo flushed a Koran down the toilet as part of their interrogation tactics to get captured muslim terrorists to cooperate. The story sparked riots in the Middle East resulting in more than a dozen people being killed. But in a stunning reversal, Newsweek later conceded that their source was faulty and they issued a retraction, apologizing for their error. It was one of the most dramatic examples in recent history of how important it is that we only rely on highly credible sources of information.
A lot of people’s theology is based less on Scripture and based more on their feelings, their traditions, and the movies.
What do you actually believe is the truth? Is Christianity more of an ethical habit of mind or is it a faith based on divine revelation? Do you actually KNOW what Jesus said will happen after you die? Do you know what Jesus said about the fate of every man and woman who will ever live? (It's not naturalism, nihilism, universalism, reincarnation or purgatory.)
Q: Are you willing to suspend your traditional beliefs and opinions about Heaven and Hell and discover what God says about the Hereafter?
This weekend at Heartland Church, I'm continuing a new series called, "HEAVEN, HELL & THE HEREAFTER," tackling one of the hardest polarities to reconcile for our postmodern generation: The mercy and the justice of God and what would happen if there is no Hell.
Don't miss it! 9:00 am, 96th Street Campus | 10:00 am Hamilton Southeastern High School | 11:00 am 96th Street Campus.
Here's last week's message to catch up: "WHAT IS HEAVEN REALLY LIKE?"