I’m going to straight out admit that I side eye a lot of these religious claims some of these dyed in the wool holy rollers spew from their mouths like virus-induced upchuck. I don’t straight out denounce them ( after all if monkeys can fall out of trees then anything is possible) but I don’t buy into a lot of what they’re pushing.
Hell is one of the things some religious sects subscribe to that I have always wondered about. I’m not going come straight out and say “it ain’t no hell” but you gotta know I’m side eyeing this like mug.
I mean come on ya’ll, on one hand there is this loving forgiving God that’s all things compassionate while on the other hand, if you don’t have yourself together as laid out by a book with chapters written by authors we never met, this same God will sentence you to eternal damnation to be served in a place of eternal burning flames.
Now before you church folk tear up my comment section reminding me that I’m flirting with hell’s fire let me tell you I don’t think so. I’m not knocking what you believe in I’m simply saying some of the things you subscribe to don’t add up for me. And Hell sparks (no pun intended) all kinds of questions in my mind.
Awhile back a priest nonetheless, denounced Hell as a fabricated control measure used by religious factions to control folks.
Scare the shit out of somebody and they’ll act right.
In a Dateline NBC interview with anchor Keith Morrison retired Episcopal bishop John Shelby Spong shared his views on how hell was concocted by the church to basically control the masses.
Here is the crux of the interview.
Spong: I don’t think Hell exists. I happen to believe in life after death, but I don’t think it’s got a thing to do with reward and punishment. Religion is always in the control business, and that’s something people don’t really understand. It’s in a guilt-producing control business. And if you have Heaven as a place where you’re rewarded for you goodness, and Hell is a place where you’re punished for your evil, then you sort of have control of the population. And so they create this fiery place which has quite literally scared the Hell out of a lot of people, throughout Christian history. And it’s part of a control tactic.
Morrison: But wait a minute. You’re saying that Hell, the idea of a place under the earth or somewhere you’re tormented for an eternity – is actually an invention of the church?
Spong: I think the church fired its furnaces hotter than anybody else. But I think there’s a sense in most religious life of reward and punishment in some form. The church doesn’t like for people to grow up, because you can’t control grown-ups. That’s why we talk about being born again. When you’re born again, you’re still a child. People don’t need to be born again. They need to grow up. They need to accept their responsibility for themselves and the world.
Morrison:What do you make of the theology which is pretty quite prominent these days in America, which is there is one guaranteed way not to go to hell; and that is to accept Jesus as your personal savior.
Spong: Yeah, I grew up in that tradition. Every church I know claims that ‘we are the true church’ – that they have some ultimate authority, ‘We have the infallible Pope,’ ‘We have the Bible.’… The idea that the truth of God can be bound in any human system, by any human creed, by any human book, is almost beyond imagination for me. I mean, God is not a Christian. God is not a Jew or a Muslim or a Hindi or Buddhist. All of those are human systems, which human beings have created to try to help us walk into the mystery of God. I honor my tradition. I walk through my tradition. But I don’t think my tradition defines God. It only points me to God.