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Death is certain, what follows is not.
Maybe you don't believe in life after death.  Well, there are a lot of bright people who share that belief.  And there are a lot of not so bright people who also share that belief.  There are also many bright people who used to share that belief but no longer do (please see the list of Former Skeptics contained on this website).  If you don't believe in life after death, I suggest that you make sure that you came to that conclusion based on your most lucid thinking and a most thorough examination of the evidence, as the ramifications are eternal.
Perhaps you believe in life after death, but don't believe in the existence of Hell.  Well, as with those who might be atheists, I suggest that you make sure that you came to that conclusion based on your most lucid thinking and a most thorough examination of the evidence.  It is a very human tendency believe in what we want to be true, as opposed to what the evidence suggests is true.  This is also a very dangerous human tendency.

In order to arrive at the conclusion that there is no Hell, one must do all of the following:
1.) Dismiss all of Jesus’ references to Hell.
2.) Dismiss all testimony, provided by very credible people, who through near-death experiences, can attest to the reality of Hell.
3.) Dismiss all compelling testimony regarding diabolical supernatural phenomenon.

Nevertheless, Hell can be a very difficult concept for us to understand.  How could a “loving God” impose the tortures of Hell on a human being for eternity just because they made a short lifetime of mistakes?  Especially when their starting point was a flawed human nature over which they had no choice.

Heaven and Hell
First we must arrive at the recognition that true love can only exist where freewill also exists.  True love cannot be coerced, it must be freely given through one's own volition.  And while we are all faced with certain predispositions (primarily genetics and social circumstances) we also each possess freewill.  Freewill to choose the direction toward God and His goodness, or to choose the direction of selfish vice and evil.  The choice is not made once, but rather again and again, day to day, moment to moment.  Through trials and joys, through confusion and epiphanies, eventually leading to a culmination and refinement of desires.  Desires either good or bad.  During this journey we each have a spark of God within us that whispers to us the truth and goodness of God, and we are surrounded by a world rich with the contrasts of good and evil.  It is through the exercising of our own freewill that we choose the direction which leads toward God and His goodness, or the direction of evil and selfish vice.  It is from this environment that emerges either the true love of God and His goodness, or a manifestation known as Hell.  On Earth, Heaven and Hell exist in a very subdued state.  A state that still provides the capacity for a change of heart, and change of desires.  In Heaven we are captivated by a constantly blooming love, wonder, adventure and glory. In Hell we are captivated by our perverse desires and those of like-minded creatures.

Copyright 2008

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