God loves you. Enjoy your eternity in hell.

A question for Christians, particularly those of the inerrantist stripe.

28 Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.

Matthew 10:28, NIV

And:

8 He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. 9 They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might 10 on the day he comes to be glorified in his holy people and to be marveled at among all those who have believed.

2 Thessalonians 1:8-10, NIV

“Punished with everlasting destruction.” Is that what a perfectly merciful, perfectly benevolent Father would do to his children?

268 thoughts on “God loves you. Enjoy your eternity in hell.

  1. If God actually existed, he’d be laughing his ass off at you, phoodoo.

    “Check this out,” he might say to the angels. “This doof thinks I’m loving. I can even drown 230,000 people, and he won’t change his mind. He just runs away from questions and tries to change the subject. And every time he tries to defend me, I let him fall on his ass. Still he believes.”

  2. And of course, the questions I’m asking are easily answered from the atheist perspective:

    1. Would a loving Father punish his children with “everlasting destruction” and shut them out from his presence?

    No. The God of the Bible isn’t very loving. He’s more of an angry and vindictive ass. He could learn something about love from humans.

    2. Would a loving God allow 230,000 people to die in a tsunami, without even warning them?

    Are you kidding? Of course not. Would you drown someone you loved, against their will, for no reason? Now multiply that by 230,000. Does that sound like love to you? If it does, what planet are you from?

    3. Would a loving God stand by, doing nothing, while a dog ate the head of a living, innocent baby?

    The very idea is ludicrous. A loving God would step in to protect the baby, just as a loving uncle would.

    Humans routinely demonstrate more love than your supposedly loving God does. No wonder you are ashamed to answer my questions.

    Your loving God clearly does not exist.

  3. keiths,

    If we’re really frogs at the bottom of a well, lacking the information we need to decide whether God is loving or not, then why do you claim that God is loving?

    As frogs at the bottom of the well we have some historic evidence written down on whats going on outside the well. Some of that evidence supports a loving God. As a materialist I can see how you believe that earthly pain and suffering is meaningless. Again, its the perspective from inside the well because to a materialist the well is all that exists.

  4. Mung: The objective fact that we think some things are in fact objectively evil is evidence for the existence of God. 🙂

    Which one?

  5. phoodoo: I disagree, I don’t think there is any objective fact that we think some things are objectively evil.

    I think mung is being ironical.

    Evil to one person might be a pleasure to another.

    Intent to do harm might be a criteria fo consider

    We all live within our own conscience, and are only subject to it.

    works fine if you live in the woods alone, but living in groups one is subject to the the rules of behavior as well.

    I believe a God’s guidance is to allow you to view your own conscience.

    Or give you a brain to figure it out.

  6. colewd,

    You’re making my point for me.

    When it comes to evidence that supposedly supports the idea of a loving God, you happily embrace it. When confronted with evidence against a loving God — 230,000 tsunami victims, for instance — you make excuses for why you should ignore the evidence. “We’re just frogs at the bottom of a well,” you say.

    It’s pure confirmation bias. Totally irrational.

    You’re not seeking the truth. You want confirmation of your pre-existing beliefs, and you’ll stamp your little feet if someone points out why those beliefs are false.

    To believe in a loving God is a badge of intellectual shame.

  7. colewd,

    As a materialist I can see how you believe that earthly pain and suffering is meaningless.

    Where on earth did you get that idea? I’ve never said anything remotely like that.

  8. keiths,

    When it comes to evidence that supposedly supports the idea of a loving God, you happily embrace it. When confronted with evidence against a loving God — 230,000 tsunami victims, for instance — you make excuses for why you should ignore the evidence. “We’re just frogs at the bottom of a well,” you say.

    Keith, we have historic evidence that God came to earth in human form to teach the people of the world to love each other. In human form he suffered a humiliating and painful death and was resurrected in order to validate his Devine nature and spread his message of love and grace.

    From this humble beginning the christian story is accepted by 2.3 billion people and is the dominant world view.

    Your view of the tsunami victims is that their existence has ended without a good explanation. This is the materialist view from the well. Many non materialists believe that their eternal journey is continuing.

  9. colewd: Your view of the tsunami victims is that their existence has ended without a good explanation.

    Mine would be: wrong place at the wrong time, no different from being in Pompeii in 79 AD.

  10. colewd,

    Keith, we have historic evidence that God came to earth in human form to teach the people of the world to love each other.

    No, we have evidence that a rabbi from around 2,000 years ago got himself in trouble with the Romans and was crucified. We don’t have evidence that he was God.

    In human form he suffered a humiliating and painful death and was resurrected in order to validate his Devine nature and spread his message of love and grace.

    Again, you’re making my case for me. You believe in an angry, vindictive, bloodthirsty God who can’t bring himself to simply forgive his children, the way many humans do. Instead, he demands blood. Someone has to suffer and die horribly before the Divine Asshole will let anyone off the hook.

    Does that sound loving to you? “For God so loved the world that he refused to forgive anyone until he tortured his own Son to death in a gruesome fashion.” Your God needs therapy, not worship.

    From this humble beginning the christian story is accepted by 2.3 billion people and is the dominant world view.

    “2.3 billion people can’t be wrong” is the dumbest argument in the book.

    Your view of the tsunami victims is that their existence has ended without a good explanation. This is the materialist view from the well. Many non materialists believe that their eternal journey is continuing.

    Most of the tsunami victims weren’t Christian, so can you guess their fate, according to the verse I quoted in the OP?

    He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might on the day he comes to be glorified in his holy people and to be marveled at among all those who have believed.

    Gee, thanks, God. You killed 230,000 people early, permanently preventing them from coming to know you and to obey the gospel. Now they’ll be “punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord.”

    Nothing says “I love you” like everlasting punishment. I’m sure they’ll be basking in the warm glow of God’s love during every minute of it.

    You got suckered, colewd. They told you what to believe, and you believed it. Yet to believe in a loving Christian God is an embarrassment. What went wrong? Why did you fall for it?

    The same question goes out to all you Christians out there. How did you manage to get suckered?

    My own excuse is that I was just a child. When I grew up and learned to think critically, I rejected it. Why haven’t you?

  11. keiths, to colewd:

    How about answering my three questions?

    phoodoo:

    At least you still have a sense of humor…

    True. The idea that colewd is going to answer those questions is as laughable as thinking that you or Mung will.

  12. Alan,

    I’m still curious as to how those that claim “evil exists” justify that claim.

    Easily. ‘Evil’ (the noun) is just a term for things that qualify as ‘evil’ (the adjective).

    Since most of us regard it as evil (the adjective) to spear a living baby with a bayonet, as eyewitnesses reported happened in Nanking, then the spearing of babies is an instance of evil (the noun). If an instance of evil exists, then evil exists.

  13. Alan Fox: Mine would be: wrong place at the wrong time, no different from being in Pompeii in 79 AD.

    My explanation would be they drowned.

  14. keiths:
    And of course, the questions I’m asking are easily answered from the atheist perspective:

    No. The God of the Bible isn’t very loving.He’s more of an angry and vindictive ass.He could learn something about love from humans.

    Are you kidding?Of course not.Would you drown someone you loved, against their will, for no reason?Now multiply that by 230,000.Does that sound like love to you?If it does, what planet are you from?

    The very idea is ludicrous.A loving God would step in to protect the baby, just as a loving uncle would.

    Humans routinely demonstrate more love than your supposedly loving God does.No wonder you are ashamed to answer my questions.

    Your loving God clearly does not exist.

    But does the “loving father” have to be good or not? Does he have to be smart? I mean, suppose this loving father thinks that if he feeds his beloved kid this kool-aid they’ll be happy for all eternity. Suppose he loves them to pieces but is himself a piece of shit. Who says that a dumb asshole that loves X has to be good to X?

    In word, there is no good “Argument from McLovin'”

  15. keiths: Since most of us regard it as evil (the adjective) to spear a living baby with a bayonet, as eyewitnesses reported happened in Nanking, then the spearing of babies is an instance of evil (the noun).

    Ah, it’s a majority rule thing.

  16. newton: God is omnipresent,He is at every funeral and the belief of an afterlife gives comfort. Being all loving does not require overt.

    Yeah, so I’ve heard. However, I was present for my dad’s death and his subsequent funeral this year (and a number of others in the past), but I alas, there was no hug or kind words from any god. Perhaps I’m too dense to recognize such, but if that’s the case, such a god lacks any quality worthy of my attention or worship imho and certainly doesn’t meet the definition of omni-benevolent (let alone personal or omnipotent or a slew of any other qualities attributed to said supposed god). Which is my point…

  17. Mung: Or in the case of keiths, it’s God’s failure to act that he find abhorrent. Whatever that term means to him.

    Ahhh…but worshiping, praising, and instituting rules and laws based on an absent, non-interacting, non-communicative imagined entity means something, huh? Oookaaay…

    It never ceases to amaze me that those who insist they believe in a all-loving, personal god don’t even flinch at the irony of statements like Mung’s above.

  18. walto: But does the “loving father” have to be good or not?Does he have to be smart?I mean, suppose this loving father thinks that if he feeds his beloved kid this kool-aid they’ll be happy for all eternity.Suppose he loves them to pieces but is himself a piece of shit.Who says that a dumb asshole that loves X has to be good to X?

    Well…the bible for one. But clearly the theists hereon are not basing their beliefs on what the bible indicates.

  19. walto: Ah, it’s a majority rule thing.

    Right right.

    I guess the only problem would be that if at the time there were more soldiers than eyewitnesses, then it wouldn’t be evil.

  20. Maybe the babies themselves were going to turn out to be evil, so God was just preventing that.

    But that still wouldn’t satisfy ketihs of course, because he doesn’t want people to even have a choice to do right or wrong, he wants them to only have a choice to do right. keiths hates freedom.

  21. phoodoo: Right right.

    I guess the only problem would be that if at the time there were more soldiers than eyewitnesses, then it wouldn’t be evil.

    I’d like keiths to start by convincing Patrick that what the majority decides is good is what IS good (since there’s no such thing as objective good). Once that’s accomplished, we can move on from there.

  22. walto,

    It seems the majority here want keiths to answer some questions, so I guess he is certainly being evil by refusing to do so.

  23. phoodoo,

    Maybe the babies themselves were going to turn out to be evil, so God was just preventing that.

    Seems to me your god has no interest in preventing evil.

    I guess the only problem would be that if at the time there were more soldiers than eyewitnesses, then it wouldn’t be evil.

    Ah, it’s starting to become clear now to you! Yes, history is written by the victors. This is basic stuff.

    But that still wouldn’t satisfy ketihs of course, because he doesn’t want people to even have a choice to do right or wrong, he wants them to only have a choice to do right.

    What choice did the tens of thousands killed by the tsunami have? What choice did I have with regard to their deaths?

    It’s interesting how low information theists descend to the level of essentially defending Hitler. Perhaps those Jewish children were going to turn out to be evil, so of course Hitler had to do what he did.

  24. keiths:
    Easily

    Let’s see! 🙂

    ‘Evil’ (the noun) is just a term for things that qualify as ‘evil’ (the adjective).

    That’s just redefining “evil” acts, “evil” events or “evil” people” as possessing some real quality or entity you identify as “evil”. Zero points so far.

    Since most of us regard it as evil (the adjective) to spear a living baby with a bayonet, as eyewitnesses reported happened in Nanking, then the spearing of babies is an instance of evil (the noun).

    See above. I’d describe such acts as abhorrent, probably wouldn’t use “evil” as a descriptive but don’t object if others prefer “evil”. We establish that som acts may be described by some or many people as “evil”. Fine. We are still at point zero.

    If an instance of evil exists, then evil exists.

    Leap of logic. Or maybe it’s humour.
    Anyone else have a serious justification for the claim “evil exists”?

  25. I see we are not far apart at all. 😉
    So just picking up on :

    Robin: The point is, what is ‘evil’ is irrelevant in this case. The real point of the Problem of Evil for theists gets back to the whole concept of what love and compassion are and what actions supposedly loving and compassionate entities, particularly supposedly capable loving and compassion entities would engage in.

    The issue for me is that all ideas of good and evil and whether they can be any more than what we say they are

    It’s the whole empty toilet paper roll issue. It’s not that not that an empty roll of toilet paper somehow qualifies as evil (which I can see Phoodoo obtusely trying to insist is being claimed), but rather that loving compassionate people don’t even hesitate to help a loved one (or even strangers in most cases!) out and bring a roll in such situations.

    Hmm. Just re-read the comments. Not so much déjà-vu as préjà-vu.

    So for those who believe there’s a really, Really, R E A L L Y POWERFUL BEST BUDDY out there with limitless time, love, and compassion, they ought to be able to come up with…I don’t know…some sort of logical explanation for why said Super Buddy even bother with empty toilet paper rolls or the killing of 6 million people by an omnicidal maniac.

    Whether anyone’s brand of theism is vulnerable to a logical argument is a question I’m not wholly convinced of. An emotional attachment seems most vulnerable to an emotional event such as the arbitrary loss of a loved one. Not that I wish that on anyone.

    ETA link

  26. phoodoo: Maybe the babies themselves were going to turn out to be evil, so God was just preventing that.

    That is possible. So God creates evil then destroys it to prevent it. Nice.

  27. Alan Fox: The issue for me is that all ideas of good and evil and whether they can be any more than what we say they are

    Sorry, that’s garbled!
    The issue for me is that all ideas of good and evil are subjective and can only be no more than what we say they are.

  28. Alan,

    Whether anyone’s brand of theism is vulnerable to a logical argument is a question I’m not wholly convinced of.

    I think that’s simply because you have trouble spotting the logical flaws. They’re more apparent to others than to you.

  29. Alan,

    The issue for me is that all ideas of good and evil are subjective and can only be no more than what we say they are.

    True, but how does that support the claim that evil doesn’t exist?

  30. newton: That is possible. So God creates evil then destroys it to prevent it. Nice.

    I’ve never had a straight answer to why God doesn’t cut to the chase and whisk us straight to heaven.

  31. Alan Fox: I see we are not far apart at all.
    So just picking up on :

    The issue for me is that all ideas of good and evil and whether they can be any more than what we say they are

    Hmmm…not sure what you mean here.

    Whether anyone’s brand of theism is vulnerable to a logical argument is a question I’m not wholly convinced of.

    Well, this is most certainly an issue, if not the issue, with such discussions/arguments.

    That said, many intellectual theistic philosophers and leaders have wrestled with the problem of evil. I find it to be a powerfully solid conundrum and a good reason for rejecting the existence of certain concepts of god.

    An emotional attachment seems most vulnerable to an emotional event such as the arbitrary loss of a loved one. Not that I wish that on anyone.

    ETA link

    Yeah. Quite so.

  32. keiths: True, but how does that support the claim that evil doesn’t exist?

    Ah, burden tennis! You claim evil exists, apparently. You prove it!

  33. Alan Fox: Sorry, that’s garbled!
    The issue for me is that all ideas of good and evil are subjective and can only be no more than what we say they are.

    Ahh…much better. I’ll go with that.

  34. Robin: Perhaps I’m too dense to recognize such, but if that’s the case, such a god lacks any quality worthy of my attention or worship imho and certainly doesn’t meet the definition of omni-benevolent (let alone personal or omnipotent or a slew of any other qualities attributed to said supposed god). Which is my point…

    I think that is a reasonable conclusion.

  35. walto:

    Ah, it’s a majority rule thing.

    No, walto. Morality is subjective. It varies from person to person.

    I picked the bayonetting of babies at Nanking as an example that we could presumably all agree was evil. If it’s evil, then we have an instance of evil; and if we have an instance of evil, then evil exists (although this appears to baffle Alan).

  36. keiths: If it’s evil, then we have an instance of evil.

    And that isn’t tautology? You shift from adjective to noun with no embarrassment whatsoever.

  37. Alan Fox: I’ve never had a straight answer to why God doesn’t cut to the chase and whisk us straight to heaven.

    We overestimate God’s interest in us

  38. walto,

    But does the “loving father” have to be good or not? Does he have to be smart? I mean, suppose this loving father thinks that if he feeds his beloved kid this kool-aid they’ll be happy for all eternity. Suppose he loves them to pieces but is himself a piece of shit. Who says that a dumb asshole that loves X has to be good to X?

    If you can find me a theist who thinks his or her God is a “dumb asshole” that nevertheless loves us, then more power to you. I’ll venture a guess that Mung, phoodoo, and colewd don’t fit that bill. Like most theists, they envision a God who is actually admirable and worthy of reverence.

    Would you worship a “dumb asshole”?

  39. keiths:

    If it’s evil, then we have an instance of evil.

    Alan:

    And that isn’t tautology?

    Of course it’s a tautology. Have you noticed that tautologies have the interesting property of being… true?

  40. colewd: Your view of the tsunami victims is that their existence has ended without a good explanation. This is the materialist view from the well. Many non materialists believe that their eternal journey is continuing.

    Funny thing is non materialists seem in no hurry to get on with that eternal journey.

  41. newton,

    Funny thing is non materialists seem in no hurry to get on with that eternal journey.

    Our time on earth is exceedingly short in the best case.

  42. phoodoo: Maybe the babies themselves were going to turn out to be evil, so God was just preventing that.

    So in standard theology wanton murder is a grievous sin punishable by eternal damnation , the soldiers who did God’s Will of preventing evil are punished by eternal damnation. If they hadn’t killed the babies they would be punished for refusing to do the will of God and would be punished by eternal damnation.

    Damned if you do,damned if you don’t.

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