Here is an interview I recorded today with Zac of the Adherent Apologetics YouTube channel.
eternal conscious torment
Christians who defend the doctrine of hell as eternal conscious torment often accuse critics of the doctrine of “modern sentimentalism”. What, like the “sentimental” ideas that slavery and torture are wrong? That animal suffering is morally significant? That armies in military conflicts shouldn’t target non-combatants? That prisons should seek to reform and not merely to […]
I just finished recording four podcasts with Catholic apologist Trent Horn in San Diego. As I speak, I’m preparing to board a plane to fly back to Edmonton. In the interim, Trent just uploaded the first episode. It was also videotaped and apparently will be made available on YouTube. Here is the link to the […]
Here is a new video I uploaded to YouTube in which I discuss the concept of hopeful universalism. For further discussion, see chapter 20 of my book What On Earth Do We Know About Heaven? which is currently only $3.99!
Let’s return to a discussion of the doctrine of hell and in particular, the concept of hell as eternal conscious torment. According to this concept, to end up in hell is to end up in a state of eternal alienation from God, one which results in unimaginable physical and spiritual/psychological torment. And that torment never ends. […]
Christian universalism is the doctrine that eventually all creatures will be reconciled to God and each other through the reconciling work of Jesus Christ. While universalism has been a minority report throughout the history of the church it has often been misunderstood and even caricatured by non-universalist Christians. This trend continues unabated into our own […]
This article, published in the TWU Today Newspaper on January 23, 1996, represents one of my first forays into theological writing. Provocatively titled “Who in hell lives forever?”, the article provides a succinct summary and defense of the case for annihilationism, the doctrine that the reprobate cease to exist in hell.
I’m a long time fan of Gary Larson’s comic strip The Far Side and this cartoon is one of my favorites. Not only does it capture the bizarre, off-beat humor for which The Far Side is justly famous, but it also succinctly summarizes a problem with the conception of God punishing people eternally in hell. How so? Well, let’s start with […]
On January 3, 2015 the Jordanian pilot Muath Al-Kasasbeh was burned alive by ISIS. A video of the murder was later released online, evoking horror and outrage worldwide. The other day I was in a conversation with a friend who told me he had watched the video of Al-Kasasbeh’s murder … and immediately regretted it. […]
In December, 2015 America’s new drug czar, Michael Botticelli, gave a revealing interview with 60 Minutes’ Scott Pelley. The interview included this exchange: Scott Pelley: Are you saying that the way we have waged the war on drugs for more than 40 years has been all wrong? Michael Botticelli: It has been all wrong. Blunt force didn’t […]
Last year I wrote an article titled “Hell, right doctrine, and right character” in which I explored the link between the formulation of right doctrine and the process of sanctification. The idea, in short, is this: correct doctrine ought to encourage the process of sanctification (aka becoming Christlike). Thus, if acceptance of a particular doctrine tends to undermine the process […]
Yesterday I posted an article posing the question: “If the God of Calvinism exists, would you worship him?” My answer is, yes, of course! Why? Because within Calvinism (as within Christian orthodoxy generally) God is understood to be morally perfect, and it is right and proper to worship a morally perfect being. Of course, I […]
Paul Bernardo is one of Canada’s most infamous rapists and serial killers. While his litany of crimes is too extensive to list here, the court evidence against the man was absolutely overwhelming and included video tapes of the crimes he filmed with the help of his equally psychopathic wife. Suffice it to say, anybody with a […]
In his essay “Where are we going?” Ted Peters describes the modern skepticism about the traditional doctrine of hell as eternal conscious torment. He writes: “Over the last two centuries, liberal minds have been bitten by a moral conscience that finds such threat-discourse undignified and revolting. We modern people with more gentle standards of morality […]