Hell and God’s love.
For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (NIV)
Some of the emerging, flawed theology will ask, “How can a loving God send anyone to Hell?” I recently read a new take, though still flawed, from a theologian who refers to the justice of God. He asks the question of whether or not spending eternity in Hell is just for the sins committed in the average life span? We may think it to be logical from a human perspective. But from a human perspective, there are many things God did that seem unjust.
The key to understanding God’s justice and punishment is found in the simple truth that God is the Judge. It’s literally His world. He gets to set the rules of the game. Who are we to argue with Him?
God says a just punishment for one sin is death. One white lie, one moment of arrogance, a quick-tempered moment are all grounds for eternal death according to the only one with authority to decide what is just.
If death is a just punishment for just one small sin, how merciful has God been with us? We are the recipient of incredible mercy even if we only consider the sins we can remember, not to mention all we have forgotten. His mercy is multiplied further when we understand that sin is a choice. God doesn’t send us to Hell. If we end up there, it will have been a choice to reject God’s grace and mercy.
On top of this extravagantly generous mercy, God adds His enduring love. He will never stop loving us. Even those who do spend eternity in Hell will be loved by God. The heartache He will experience because of choices that lead to eternal death will be too great for any human measurement.
If God will continue to love those who have rejected Him their whole life, we should have an unshakeable faith that God never stops loving us even at our worst moment. And this love that never stops is God’s attempt to draw us to Him. How hard does He work to keep us away from the fires of Hell? How determined is He to forgive those choices so that nothing is left that would lead us anywhere but His Kingdom forever?
Prayer: Lord, thank you for loving me forever no matter what. When I have done my worst, let the Holy Spirit sing loud the love of my Father and set me free from guilt and shame. Amen.