Is There Really An Eternal Hell? By George Stroh April 4, 2011
"And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life; and the dead were judged from the things which were written in the books, according to their deeds. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it, and death and hades gave up the dead that were in them; and they were judged, everyone of them according to their deeds. Then death and hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. And if anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire." (Revelation 20:12-15)
Rob Bell, a false teacher who has the title "Founding Pastor" of "Mars Hill Bible Church", is the author of a book entitled "Love Wins". In his book, Bell promotes two of Satan's big lies; That there is no such thing as an eternal hell and, because God's love always wins over everyone even after death, everyone is saved from His wrath. This false teaching is also known as "universalism", the doctrine that everyone eventually goes to heaven regardless of their faith.
This false doctrine is, of course, very popular because it is consistent with the humanistic belief that man is basically good and deserves eternal life and heaven. And that a loving God would never send anyone to Hell. Most of us, including me, would much rather focus on God's love than on God's judgment, wrath and hell. However, the Bible is very clear, there is a literal heaven and a literal hell and most people will spend eternity in hell; "Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it." (Matthew 7:13). Actually, the Bible says more about eternal "hell", "the lake of fire" and "the second death", than about eternal heaven. If eternal heaven is real, and the Bible says that it is, then eternal hell is also real.
These verses in Revelation, as well as many other Scripture verses, tell us that everyone, regardless of status, will be judged by the Lord; "For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad." (2 Corinthians 5:10). Those who have, in this life, believed the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ will have their names written in the book of life and will enjoy eternal life in heaven. However, those who's name is not found written in the book of life (unbelievers), will be sentenced to suffering in an eternal hell.
It seems nonsensical to even think about greater or lessor joy and rewards in heaven or torment and suffering in hell. But the Bible indicates that both the extent of joy and rewards in heaven or the suffering and torment in hell will be based upon what one has done in this life, "whether good or bad", and the amount of revelation about God that was believed or rejected.
The greatest condemnation in the Bible is reserved for false teachers and apostates (those who have heard the truth and then rejected it) like Rob Bell; "...who will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing swift destruction upon themselves." (2 Peter 2:1). By the way, if you are thinking that I'm being unfair or too harsh about Rob Bell and others like him, please reread 2 Peter 2 and the book of Jude. See what God says about apostates and false teachers. A denial of an eternal hell and teaching universal salvation not only distorts the true Gospel message, but makes God a liar and denies His holiness, righteousness and justice.
Yes, God's love does win for those who are saved! His love is most clearly seen in this most often quoted verse; "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life." (John 3:16) Maranatha!