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    mine is the doctrine of hell. specificaly, the eternal part.

    It is really difficult to reconcile the love of God with never ending, unimaginable torment without even the hope of mercy

    It is hard to imagine how there is [b:24gkb60h]never[/b:24gkb60h] a point where a person’s debt is paid…even if that number is a billion years.

    I accept this doctrine as true because that is what my church teaches…but I really struggle to get my mind around it.
    anyone else feel the same?


    No, I guess I don’t really have a problem with it. I mean, God gave us our chance on earth and if we chose to totally reject him them we pay the price. So often we place an emphasis on our loving God, but we should not forget God is just as well. If you mess up, you pay the price.

    Now, I generally don’t have a problem with Church doctrines, but rather I get caught up in some people’s extreme devotion to Mary and other Marian practices. I mean, I know she’s great and all and played a big part in bringing Jesus to earth, but I think she is given a little too much attention. It could easily be said that if Mary hadn’t consented that God would have found another woman. Actually, on that note, God did all the work anyway – preserving her from sin and all.


    See I have no problem with the idea of marian devotion.
    Jesus was the perfect man and He, therfore, perfectly fulfilled the law.
    The law says [i:v1cygr5h]honor your Mother and father[/i:v1cygr5h]. Jesus would not merely honor her but would do so perfectly. If Jesus honored her, how can we go wrong by doing so?

    As for the issue of hell, you inadvetantly expressed my dilemma.
    You refered to hell as [i:v1cygr5h]paying the price[/i:v1cygr5h]. That is just the issue.

    The price can never be paid. A soul never suffers enough to [i:v1cygr5h]pay the price[/i:v1cygr5h]. It is just hard for me to grasp the idea of no mercy ever.

    If a soul suffers in hell for 1 million years, it has not even begun to pay it’s debt. It is a very difficult doctrine.
    Like i said, I accept it…but to say it isn’t difficult…well, i’d be lying.


    Is there an eternity of heaven or can we mess up in heaven and get sent to hell? I know Lucifer did it.


    If I remember correctly, theologians have come to the conclusion that Lucifer’s revolt (including his demons) was the first and last such action. Since then, no angel nor perfected human soul can/will defect from God.


    Whoops, looks like I lost track of this topic. :oops:

    Anyway, what I was getting at was that if there is an eternity of heaven, why can’t there be an eternity of hell? If someone can’t turn their back on God in heaven, can someone repent in hell?

    Benedict, do you have a resource or something that outlines what you were just talking about?


    I think it was discussed in Frank Sheed’s [u:2hke8m3a]Theology for Beginners[/u:2hke8m3a].


    Maybe eternity does have a number. What I mean is in the OT God creates nothing into something in 6 days. From my understanding the Church has no stance on how you interpret that (I could be wrong). Meaning you can take it as a literal 6 days or as a number that symbolizes or represents something else. Could that be the case with the word eternity? After all don’t forget that Doctrinal Development is still in full effect. Whatever the case, I submitt to the Church.
    Tim Staples told me that what makes Hell as Hell is not the fire, darkness, smells, and whatever other horror we imagine, but rather it’s the deep desire that they begin to have towards God. Now that they know He exist and see his greatness, but can’t have a relationship with Him or any of his greatness.


    PS-Frank Sheed is a wonderful read. I have that book Benedict.


    [quote:26q9u9j7]I think it was discussed in Frank Sheed’s [u:26q9u9j7]Theology for Beginners[/u:26q9u9j7].[/quote:26q9u9j7]

    That’s the one. Love Frank Sheed. To help further with this topic and the concepts of infinite and eternity read another of his books call Theology and Sanity. These two books brought all of this together for me.

    Further, we have to except that God is Spiritual and the Creator. Therefore he is outside of time, since he created it <img decoding=” title=”Smile” />. We on the other hand are of spiritual and material worlds. We are bound and confined by time. Therefore, we cannot always get our minds around the concepts that are God in whole.

    As Frank Sheed says, “God expresses himself in perfection through his will. We cannot and must struggle with our limited language to convey this understanding of God.” Paraphrased sorry <img decoding=” title=”Smile” />

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