Heaven, Hell, and Christianity
Charlotte Im
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It all depends on our interpretation of hell.

Biblical scholars will tell you that the afterlife was not a concept of the ancient near east Jew. Some will tell you that if Jesus conceived of the afterlife (and there’s no scriptural evidence he did), he was influenced by Zoroastrianism by way of Isaiah — who was no doubt himself influenced by the “other” ancient monotheistic religion during Babylonian exile.

Theologians will babble on and on about their concept of the afterlife, and try to piece together morsels of scripture to paint something that never looks quite right.

Hell, even Martin Luther and John Calvin couldn’t agree on it.

All of this because we’re sort of missing a first-hand account from someone coming back and telling us all the dirty details.

In reality, when Jesus spoke of hell, it was in the here and now. We can choose hell, or we can choose to help bring the Kingdom to earth (as it is in heaven). Sometimes he was esoteric about it, other times he was pretty direct — like when he called the pharisees “white washed tombs.” Some of us choose hell every day. Some of us willfully (or ignorantly) put others in hell. Or heaven.

Donald Trump seems to be digging himself a grave (or as the Hebrews would call it “Sheol” or “Hades”) and intent on bringing all of us with him. To hell.

The Good News is that there’s something we can do about it.

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