Skip to comments.Americans Think Hell Exists, But No One Goes There
Posted on 05/14/2004 8:20:11 PM PDT by Land of the Irish
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Jimmy Akin has discussed this quite a bit lately in his blog:
As Padre Pio used to say:
"They'll believe in hell when they get there"!
Hopefully, your submission will inspire more Catholics to invoke the patronage of St Joseph (that they too may depart this world in the arms of Jesus and Mary), and to pray the holy rosary each and every day
I'm amazed. Jimmy Akin has just put into words what I've been thinking for a long time now.
He gets it. Somebody out there gets it.
Americans once had a reputation for common sense; this smacks of a creeping utopianism.
When I see stories such as this, I have no trouble believing in perdition.
This is positively bizarre! How would the Church do this? We use miracles as requisites to sainthood.
What would the Church use as requisites to perdition?
It is a good thing the Church wastes not one minute of precious time defining who might or might not be in hell.
No mortal heretofore has descended into Hell with the ceremony of canonisation. Sigismondo shall be the first to be deemed worthy of such honour. By an edict of the Pope, he shall be enrolled in the company of Hell as comrade of the devils and the damned... (Pius II, 1460 AD)
No Pope can declare that anyone is in hell, though some Popes tried, no doubt.
People need to limit their beliefs on hell to what the bible does say about it. The bible says that people are punished after judgement and not now.
"The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished." 2 Peter 2:9.
Sinners will be cast into hellfire at the great judgment day at the end of the world?not when they die. God would not punish a person in fire until his case was tried and decided in court at the end of the world. Nor would God burn a murderer who died 5,000 years ago 5,000 years longer than one who dies and deserves punishment for the same sin today.
So shall it be in the end of this world. The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; And shall cast them into a furnace of fire." Matthew 13:40-42. "The word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day." John 12:48.
Yes, I was taught things not true about hell, and I think that most of us hear that too.
For with respect to that which he [Victor] most correctly and very soundly holds, namely, that souls are judged when they depart from the body, before they come to that judgment which must be passed on them when reunited to the body and are tormented or glorified in that same flesh which they here inhabited -- was that a matter of which you [Peter] were unaware? Who is so obstinate against the Gospel as not to perceive those things in the parable of that poor man carried after death to Abraham's bosom and of the rich man whose torments are set before us? (St. Augustine of Hippo, On the Soul and Its Origin, 11, n.8.)
What do you think, for instance, of his idea that we know that Judas, and perhaps Nero, are in hell?
Let me take this occasion to clarify a further point. I reported that Pope John Paul II, according to the English text of one of his General Audience talks, said: "Eternal damnation remains a possibility, but we are not granted, without special divine revelation, the knowledge of whether or which human beings are effectively involved in it." By now I have been able to get my hands on the official (Italian) version of the talk in the Insegnamenti di Giovanni Paolo II. It agrees with the English except that the words "whether or" are omitted. Thus the Pope cannot be cited as tending toward universalism. On the contrary, he teaches here as elsewhere that some have in fact said "no" to the divine invitation to everlasting life. I believe this to be the case, though the Church has never taught under pain of heresy that anyone is damned. (Emphasis mine)
Hmmm, if one were to examine the statements and writings of their heretic-in-chief, "JP2":
"All men are saved." (Osservatore Romano, 6 May 1980)
"The article in the Apostles' Creed, 'He descended into hell', simply means that Christ's body was in the earth for three days." (Osservatore Romano, 16 January 1989)
632 The frequent New Testament affirmations that Jesus was "raised from the dead" presuppose that the crucified one sojourned in the realm of the dead prior to his resurrection. This was the first meaning given in the apostolic preaching to Christ's descent into hell: that Jesus, like all men, experienced death and in his soul joined the others in the realm of the dead. But he descended there as Saviour, proclaiming the Good News to the spirits imprisoned there.
633 Scripture calls the abode of the dead, to which the dead Christ went down, "hell" - Sheol in Hebrew or Hades in Greek - because those who are there are deprived of the vision of God. Such is the case for all the dead, whether evil or righteous, while they await the Redeemer: which does not mean that their lot is identical, as Jesus shows through the parable of the poor man Lazarus who was received into "Abraham's bosom": "It is precisely these holy souls, who awaited their Saviour in Abraham's bosom, whom Christ the Lord delivered when he descended into hell." Jesus did not descend into hell to deliver the damned, nor to destroy the hell of damnation, but to free the just who had gone before him.
634 "The gospel was preached even to the dead." The descent into hell brings the Gospel message of salvation to complete fulfilment. This is the last phase of Jesus' messianic mission, a phase which is condensed in time but vast in its real significance: the spread of Christ's redemptive work to all men of all times and all places, for all who are saved have been made sharers in the redemption.
1033 We cannot be united with God unless we freely choose to love him. But we cannot love God if we sin gravely against him, against our neighbor or against ourselves: "He who does not love remains in death. Anyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him." Our Lord warns us that we shall be separated from him if we fail to meet the serious needs of the poor and the little ones who are his brethren. To die in mortal sin without repenting and accepting God's merciful love means remaining separated from him for ever by our own free choice. This state of definitive self- exclusion from communion with God and the blessed is called "hell."
1034 Jesus often speaks of "Gehenna" of "the unquenchable fire" reserved for those who to the end of their lives refuse to believe and be converted, where both soul and body can be lost. Jesus solemnly proclaims that he "will send his angels, and they will gather . . . all evil doers, and throw them into the furnace of fire," and that he will pronounce the condemnation: "Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire!"
1035 The teaching of the Church affirms the existence of hell and its eternity. Immediately after death the souls of those who die in a state of mortal sin descend into hell, where they suffer the punishments of hell, "eternal fire." The chief punishment of hell is eternal separation from God, in whom alone man can possess the life and happiness for which he was created and for which he longs.
1036 The affirmations of Sacred Scripture and the teachings of the Church on the subject of hell are a call to the responsibility incumbent upon man to make use of his freedom in view of his eternal destiny. They are at the same time an urgent call to conversion: "Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is easy, that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard, that leads to life, and those who find it are few." Since we know neither the day nor the hour, we should follow the advice of the Lord and watch constantly so that, when the single course of our earthly life is completed, we may merit to enter with him into the marriage feast and be numbered among the blessed, and not, like the wicked and slothful servants, be ordered to depart into the eternal fire, into the outer darkness where "men will weep and gnash their teeth."
1037 God predestines no one to go to hell; for this, a willful turning away from God (a mortal sin) is necessary, and persistence in it until the end. In the Eucharistic liturgy and in the daily prayers of her faithful, the Church implores the mercy of God, who does not want "any to perish, but all to come to repentance": Father, accept this offering from your whole family. Grant us your peace in this life, save us from final damnation, and count us among those you have chosen. (John Paul II, Catechism of the Catholic Church)
Now that you've been proven wrong, retract your slander of the Pope as a "heretic-in-chief".
381. Q. What must they do who have lied about their neighbor and seriously injured his character?
A. They who have lied about their neighbor and seriously injured his character must repair the injury done as far as they are able, otherwise they will not be forgiven. (Baltimore Catechism No. 2)
Sorry, will be those who take the reality of Hell lightly. Christ suffered his Passion for a reason. He came to free us from the stain of original sin. Now, because of his love for us, we may now enter into the gates of Heaven. It is Christ and only him that merited for us Eternal Salvation. Yet, it is also up to us to accept his saving love and follow in his footsteps.
I bring this up because there are may who believe all they have to do is say they accept Jesus as their Lord and Savior, then go about their sinful ways. We must accept Jesus as our Savior, and then hold fast to his commands. What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works?(James 3:14). So also faith of itself, if it does not have works, is dead.(James 3:17).
Now this is the message that we have heard from him and proclaim to you: God is light, and in him there is no darkness at all. If we say, We have fellowship with him, while we continue to walk in darkness, we lie and do not act in truth. But if we walk in the light as he is in the light, then we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of his Son Jesus cleanses us from all sin. If we say, We are without sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we acknowledge our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from every wrongdoing. If we say, We have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us. My children I am writing this to you so that you may not commit sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous one. He is expiation for our sins, and not for our sins only but for those of the whole world. The way we may be sure that we know him is to keep his commandments. Whoever say, I know him, but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps his word, the love of God is truly perfected in him. This is the way we may know that we are in union with him: whoever claims to abide in him ought to live just as he lived.(1 John 1:5-10 & 1 John 2:1-6).
I believe that this is an important truth to understand in relation to the pains of Hell that can come about through the lack of this truth in its entirety.
God Bless, TTWSYF
Thank you for the update. It is good news.
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