Rob Bell on Hell

Justin Taylor and Denny Burk point out a new video from Rob Bell about his forthcoming book, Love Wins: A Book About Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived.

Here’s the publisher’s description:

Bell addresses one of the most controversial issues of faith—the afterlife—arguing that a loving God would never sentence human souls to eternal suffering. With searing insight, Bell puts hell on trial, and his message is decidedly optimistic—eternal life doesn’t start when we die; it starts right now. And ultimately, Love Wins.

Hear it in Bell’s own words:

Scary stuff.

It seems Bell, like many before him, has let his inability to reconcile Scripture with his reason and emotions control what he believes. This is profoundly dangerous personally, but even worse is the hugely destructive impact it will likely have on on those who sit under his teaching.

For more, read the writeup on the CT blogDenny Burk’s answers to Rob’s questions, Justin Taylor’s post, and, if you dare, the comments.

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7 Responses to Rob Bell on Hell

  1. Paul D. Adams February 26, 2011 at 3:42 pm #

    Of course no one knows for sure whether Ghandi is in Hell, given that this kind of knowing is evidential. But, I don’t require certainty in my knowing to be right. I can be right about a belief and not have certainty. Consider the lottery. I buy a ticket with the belief that it’s the winning number. When the winning number turns out to be my number, then my belief was true all along, though I had little, if any, certainty. And, on a different kind of knowing, anyone not naming Jesus as Lord and Savior IS in Hell, so my belief is certain in so far as my Bible is true.

  2. Dan Olinger February 26, 2011 at 7:58 pm #


    As you noted, seems as though Bell has preferred logic over revelation on the problem of evil. You might be interested to know that Joel Arnold successfully defended his dissertation on antinomy yesterday at BJU. It’s quite good and would be worth a read, i think, when it’s in final form. He lays down criteria for determining paradox and then constructs a model for dealing with them, based on five key criteria. I think it serves as a nice starting point for people wrestling, as Bell is, with revelation that appears to defy logic.

    • Phil Gons February 26, 2011 at 9:48 pm #

      Sounds interesting. Thanks for the tip.

  3. Mark V February 26, 2011 at 8:02 pm #

    In the book, I wonder if Rob Bell gives his theology of sin. I especially wonder how he would argue against the doctrine of original sin. Those would be some impressive (among other things) hermeneutical gymnastics!

  4. Carson T. Clark February 27, 2011 at 5:29 am #

    An Open Letter to Justin Taylor Regarding His Condemnation of Rob Bell

    • Phil Gons February 28, 2011 at 7:42 pm #

      I think you’ve missed the mark, Carson.

      • Mark V February 28, 2011 at 8:43 pm #

        I agree, Phil.

        To use Carson’s movie preview analogy, if I see a trailer for a movie and it is full of garbage I can safely say that there will be garbage in the movie. I can even say that people should not see the movie because it would be damaging to their walk with Christ.

        The same goes for the marketing clip of Bell’s new book. I personally would rather die than hint at some of the ideas that were expressed in that clip.