4 Last Things: Episode 4

. Hell, Eternal Damnation

  1. Preamble- As a theologian, I am embarrassed about the debate about hell amongst theologians. Not the gravitas of homoousios (Arius) or Theotokos (Nestorius) Hell is Christianity 101 and to debate whether there is a reasonable hope that all are saved is spurious theology. It confuses the faithful, makes the actions of Christ irrelevant, provides a harbor for mortal sin which if left unforgiven will result in eternal damnation.

Mocks justice, farce of mercy.

”The flock has a right to truth and we may not tinker with their lives. They ought not to be unsettled by shifting opinions and scholarly contradictions.”[1]

I call this type of theology Mengeleistic Theology. Neologism

Exploit weakest and least, most vulnerable around him.

Liturgy stripped of grandeur, cohesion, logic, faithfulness tradition, platitudes for formation

‘Children love justice because innocence. Adults are sinners want mercy.”

Jesus asks us to be like children.

God is not an enabler.

One clear example of this tinkering is on the doctrine of hell.

“One can easily adduce biblical doctrines to which history brings all sorts of answers. Jesus’ teaching on hell seems clear as day. Yet we find a large number of contradictory reactions to it. Is there a really final damnation? Are the New Testament terms such as fire, darkness, grinding of teeth, to be understood literally or metaphorically? Is the fire physical or spiritual? Is Jesus’ idea of everlasting to be taken literally or did he mean a “long time”?”[2]

Why spiritual fire less painless. Pretend one is better than the other when there is no knowledge of a spiritual fire. Arrogance.

Spiritual is reduced to pretend.

Imagination, long march from Enlightenment, rational me, won’t believe in God

Question hell, question if God exists

Concerned about hell shows concern of soul

Lack of death penalty shows lack of belief in God

I clearly contend that this type of ongoing theological speculation does great damage to the flock. Treat the heretics the way Nicholas did Arius.

Another clear condemnation of Mengelistic Theology is from St. Pius X #40 (1907)

“A lamentable spectacle is that presented by the aberrations of human reason when it yields to the spirit of novelty, when against the warning of the Apostle it seeks to know beyond what it is meant to know, and when relying too much on itself it thinks it can find the truth outside the Catholic Church wherein truth is found without the slightest shadow of error.”[3] Pascendi Dominici Gregis = Feeding the Lord’s Flock

St Pope Pius clearly stating satisfying idle curiosity is a lamentable spectacle and the source of this curiosity is pride.

  1. hell = is the self-exclusion from communion with God and the blessed, suffering unquenchable torment for all eternity
  2. Terms= Old & New Testament
  3. Sheol occurs 65 times in the Old Testament considered the general abode of the dead and a place for the unrighteous dead. Jesus gives the definite understanding of this state.
  4. Gehenna, unquenchable fire, furnace of fire, eternal fire, prison, outer darkness
  5. Jesus No one speaks of hell with greater clarity in SS than Christ himself. It is worth doing a personal Bible Study on the what our Blessed Lord actually says about hell.

Mat 7:13-14 13 “Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is easy,[a] that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. 14 For the gate is narrow and the way is hard, that leads to life, and those who find it are few.

  1. Paul on Hell Rom 2:1-12 Therefore you have no excuse, O man, whoever you are, when you judge another; for in passing judgment upon him you condemn yourself, because you, the judge, are doing the very same things.We know that the judgment of God rightly falls upon those who do such things.Do you suppose, O man, that when you judge those who do such things and yet do them yourself, you will escape the judgment of God? Or do you presume upon the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience? Do you not know that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance? But by your hard and impenitent heart you are storing up wrath for yourself on the day of wrath when God’s righteous judgment will be revealed. For he will render to every man according to his works: to those who by patience in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life; but for those who are factious and do not obey the truth, but obey wickedness, there will be wrath and fury. There will be tribulation and distress for every human being who does evil, the Jew first and also the Greek, 10 but glory and honor and peace for everyone who does good, the Jew first and also the Greek. 11 For God shows no partiality.

12 All who have sinned without the law will also perish without the law, and all who have sinned under the law will be judged by the law.

Ignorance of the law not an excuse.

In their heart, those in hell knew.

Mockery of justice by demanding mercy.

Abhorrence of wickedness, works of Satan focused on our destruction.

We are at war, spiritual war.

Christians beheaded by Islamists, persecution of underground Chinese Catholics

We are fighting a war, Confirmation is for battle

Change in the wind, last great rebellion for man is holiness

Modern man is temporal can only get so debauched, a natural limit to satiation

Holiness, unending spring, always fills needs

[1]Thomas Dubay S.M., Faith and Certitude: Can we be sure of the things that matter most to us? (Ignatius: San Francisco) 1985, 170.

[2] Ibid 168.

[3] Leo XIII, Pascendi Dominici Gregis, On the Doctrine pf the Modernists, (Pauline Press: Boston 1907) 51