Episode 4 - Hell Bound
When we talk about God there are certain questions that, for many of us, come to mind. One of the most important questions is, is God good? It's an important question, and it exist and presses in on us for a lot of really good reasons. History bares witness to horrendous events attributed to God and that does't even include the difficult events we have to wrestle through in the Bible. Above all of this, the issue that calls God's goodness into question the quickest, is often, the question of hell. How can a good God send billions of people to a place of torment and pain forever?
For the next couple of episodes we will be diving into the questions of hell and the goodness of God. To help us do this we are interviewing Josh Butler, pastor and author of Skeletons in God's Closet and The Pursuing God. Josh is great because on the one hand he is super smart but at the same time he isn't content with leaving theology in the abstract. In fact, he believes you cannot separate theology especially a theology of hell from the reality of our world.
In this part of our conversation about hell we lay some important ground work that will help us answer the deep and dark questions that cause us so many problems. There are three big ideas that need to be addressed:
- Many of us approach God and hell with a specific caricature in mind that may or may not be true.
- We often separate theology and reality, but we can't understand hell outside of real suffering and injustice. Judgement makes no sense unless we see injustice.
- The Bible is a story hell, God, and even us are characters in that story and thus need to understand each piece within their larger narrative context.