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Many Christians do take extreme measures – and they are criticized for that, too. Many Christians also respect other people’s rights to make their own decisions.I take some time to visit atheist blogs – and blog myself – for precisely the reason that I believe one’s eternal destiny is important.I forget the exact conversation topic, but my uncle said jokingly, “Hey, just make sure no burning bushes start talking to you, or people will think you’re crazy.” He said it as a joke, but it got me thinking that what he essentially said was that people today (presumably including himself) would see Moses as crazy. But to get back to your point, Luke, I think what you’re pointing out is a fact of human nature itself. I mean, it’s a struggle for most of us to even contemplate these things. Same thing with Christians – beliefs about hell are uncomfortable, so they try not to think about it except when they feel compassion towards “saving” people from it.We could point out the same thing in atheists as well – why don’t you live every moment of your life knowing that you will die? We do because we feel it’s important, but in our everyday lives, it doesn’t cross our minds. Not thinking about hell helps them live a normal life in the same way that not thinking about death helps us do the same. But, these are still good questions, things that Christians often ask of each other.A good book is NT Wright’s “Surprised by Hope” which has a chapter on hell that’s quite interesting.Also, CS Lewis’ “The Great Divorce” presents a very interesting look at the question.
I was at church (I still go to church when I’m back at home, to avoid arguments with my parents), and after the service I was milling about in the foyer and came across my uncle talking to another fellow in the church. They know it’s crazy, but they still believe it anyway. So why aren’t we rushing around to get everything done, continually updating our wills, always making sure that funeral plans are arranged, etc.?I think the answer to the question you posed is yes, Christians really believe. Seems to me there is only so much they and other Christians can do (didn’t even the Apostles shake off their sandals if their message wasn’t heard and accepted? Should some react in a greater capacity than they have?So why aren’t they frantic, as they should be, if God is going to torture the vast majority of humankind forever for not loving Him? they don’t seem upset that their beloved son will be tortured forever in hell. Absolutely, with respect to this I agree with your article. They believe their son, whom they love dearly, is going to be tortured forever. They’re upset that I reject their way of life as both deluded was a Christian. And let’s say this information came from a very reliable source, so that you this was going to happen. Would you just mention this to your friends and family in passing, and send them the occasional tract with information on the threat of the Nazis? Maybe you would drive out there and try to convince them of the threat until you were blue in the face. I know if would do some pretty drastic things to save my friends and family. Sure, they’re upset that their son has rejected most of the values and “truths” they tried to instill in me. The Nazis were going take everybody off to concentration camps in chains, and possibly kill them.