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Dear Liberal Preacher,

First of all, i love the blog. Great stuff!

I’ve been reading through the posts and you mention a couple of times that you don’t believe Hell exists. Could you dive a little deeper into the theological framework for your belief? I understand the whole “God is too loving for punishment” argument…I was just wondering if there was any more substance behind that. Is there any punishment for no belief and/or complete selfishness?

Thanks

Sincerely,

Dear Concerned Future Seminary Student

First of all,

I’m concerned that you are concerned.  I have a track record of not doing well with individuals who are concerned.  Believe me, it’s one of my core beliefs.  I don’t do well with people who are concerned.  No one has ever been concerned that I’m too nice or too Christian or too Buddist or too Universalist or too Baptist or too smart.  Or maybe they have.

Concerned sounds like disappointement on steriods.  And being trained to be a psycho psychotherapist (kidding about the psycho) my hunch is you tend to be uptight and I know what uptight folk can do to clergy and the church’s soup and the gospel of Jesus Christ.  I’m not saying the steeples don’t need commitment and integrity, but concern is another matter altogether.  So yes, I’m concerned about you being so concerned.  Take a walk.  Worry about world hunger.  Breathe in.  Breathe out. Maybe that will help with your concern level.

You ask about  diving deeper into theological framework of my beliefs on hell.  First of all, I’m not a good diver so I’m not going to dive at all.  And as for the deeper, I agree the church needs to get deeper, deeper into the world’s needs, deeper into our hearts, but not deeper into some theological framework.  You are going to bore me to death.  I’ve set through seminary classes like that.  Here’s a clue:  all those theological systems are lies.  Hate to break it to you so bluntly.

Sounds like you are pretty sure about hell too.  I wonder how you got so sure during your short life.  My guess is you have lived in your little mind and provincial neighborhood for far too long.  Not throwing stones. I did that for years myself.

How many homeless people/transitional people speak with you on a daily basis?

Do you know anybody who is so messed up they are beyond even the repair of God?

Were your parents concerned parents?  How do you feel about your momma and your daddy?

Rahter than being too concerned I would submit you nurture a wild curiosity about yourself, your theological framework, your osbession with hell, and with any and all  theological frameworks built on sand, which is all of them.

Now on God being too loving.  I’m worried about Christians who worry about God  being too loving.  My guess is such people aren’t very loving of themselves and therefore try to make life hell for the rest of us.

The punishment for no belief and complete selfishness shall be delivered by Christians going on crusades or Christians singing in the choir.

Little or Liberal Baptist Rev.                                                        

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