Last week I wrote a couple posts about an interesting topic that I apparently jumped fully into, that is the topic of annihilationism. This is the idea that hell will end for those condemned there after a time – that rather than suffering for eternity those damned will be annihilated, that they’ll cease to be.
It seems there are four parts to the annihilationist’s argument (of the more than one hundred comments on my facebook post you’d think there are at least four hundred arguments for it and just as many against it), these are:
1) The biblical references for the ‘destruction’ of the wicked,
2) The inconsistency of an eternal hell with the love of God,
3) The injustice or unfairness of the disparity between sins committed in this life and the punishment of eternal torment, and
4) That allowing evil to continue in hell would mess with the perfection of the universe God will create after the Judgment Day. (Order taken from Wayne Grudem)
Over the next series of posts (for the record there are seven of these) I hope to respond to this doctrine, not only to respond to it but also to make clear both the biblical stance as well as my stance on this topic of the eternality of hell.
However before we begin to look more deeply at this topic I want to make one thing absolutely crystal clear and this one thing should be at the front of our minds whenever we are discussing or thinking about the topic of hell, namely that we are thinking about the outcome for millions of real people.
Hell is real, whether one believes in annihilationism or eternal hell, it’s still real and will still be awful and real people will go there. Friends, family, moms, dads, brothers, sisters, children will inhabit this terrible place where God justly pours out his wrath on those who are not saved by the blood of Jesus. This MUST be at the forefront of our minds as we think about this topic. The wrath of God is real, and it will be – and is - unimaginable.