“There is no doctrine which I would more willingly remove from Christianity than this, if it lay in my power. But it has the full support of Scripture and, specially, of our Lord’s own words; it has always been held by Christendom; and it has the support of reason.” (C. S. Lewis)
C. S. Lewis went on to say, “I have met no people who fully disbelieved in Hell and also had a living and life-giving belief in Heaven.” Randy Alcorn adds, “The biblical teaching on both destinations [heaven & hell] stands or falls together. If the one is real, so is the other; if the one is a myth, so is the other. The best reason for believing in Hell is that Jesus said it exists.”
“Too many Christians choose to believe whatever makes them feel good, while they ignore, deny, or reinterpret Scripture when it doesn’t fit culture’s current definition of love and tolerance. Hence, culture and the reader of Scripture become the authority, rather than Scripture itself. Faith becomes merely a collection of fleeting opinions, always subject to revision. That is something very different from historic, biblically grounded Christian faith.” (Randy Alcorn)
This week I want to share a few more thoughts and responses to Rob Bell’s book, Love Wins.
Of the numerous concerns that I have with his book, one of my greatest is this:
It would be very easy for a person to read Love Wins and come away believing that people will have a second chance after they die to make a decision to place their faith in Christ, and therefore spend eternity in heaven.
Scripture makes it very clear that “…it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment” (Hebrews 9:27 ESV). We see throughout Scripture that after death, there is no second chance. After death, there is no automatic rewind. What’s done is done. There is no turning back. There is no “I was wrong! What do I have to do now to make it right?” Of all the serious things in life, this certainly is one of the most serious and sobering. It is not something to laugh at or joke about. A person’s eternal destiny is at stake.
Someone could read Bell’s book and easily think, “I’ll have a chance to decide if I believe in Christianity and if I want to trust Christ after I die … so in the meantime, I’m going to continue to live life my way.”
After death, they would be shocked to find out that there is no second chance. No “do overs!” And that person will spend eternity separated from God in a place Scripture calls “hell.” Rob Bell could be misleading hundreds, if not thousands of people, into believing these false ideas. Scripture speaks often about the danger of being “misled” by false teaching (Acts 20:29-30; 2 Peter 2:1; 1 Timothy 4:1; Matthew 7:15; Galatians 1:18; 2 Corinthians 11:13).
Last week I shared with you Randy Alcorn’s review of Mark Galli’s book, God Wins.
This week I wanted to share with you Alcorn’s review of Francis Chan’s latest book, Erasing Hell. As I said last week, Randy Alcorn (in my opinion) is one of the best biblical and theological communicators in our day. His writing is easy to understand and yet theologically profound (not an easy balance). I have always found his writings to be solid and firmly rooted in Scripture.