Is a Belief in Hell Incompatible with the Truth That God Is Love?

If we start selectively believing Scripture, we dismantle the authority of Scripture

“Whenever we take one biblical truth, then conclude that another teaching of Scripture is incompatible with it, we presume to act as judges of Scripture, rather than submitting to what it says. Hence we become our own authority, defining God’s love on our own terms in a way that is incompatible with Hell, whereas Scripture sees God’s love and Hell as two coexisting truths.”

 

Many people today act as if we are the first ones to really believe in God’s love. On the contrary, this has been a fundamental doctrine of the Christian faith throughout the ages. The Puritans believed strongly in the love of God. It never prevented them from embracing the doctrine of Hell, since that is revealed in Scripture also.

We may pride ourselves in thinking we are too loving to believe in Hell. But in saying this, we blaspheme, for we claim to be more loving than Jesus—more loving than the One who with outrageous love took upon himself the full penalty for our sin.

Whenever we take one biblical truth, then conclude that another teaching of Scripture is incompatible with it, we presume to act as judges of Scripture, rather than submitting to what it says. Hence we become our own authority, defining God’s love on our own terms in a way that is incompatible with Hell, whereas Scripture sees God’s love and Hell as two coexisting truths. We cannot figure out how to reconcile them, just as we cannot figure out how to reconcile God’s sovereignty and meaningful human choice. However, the two doctrines are in fact compatible in the mind of God. And it is His mind, not ours, which is the source of truth.

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