Worthy of Damnation – A Wailing and Gnashing of Teeth
I like to collect Christian clichés. Most clichés that I hear from Christians are harmless, but there is one cliché that I can do without ever hearing again. When considering their own sinfulness, Christians often say, “We deserve Hell.” Or worse yet, “I deserve Hell,” usually followed by, “but by the grace of Jesus…” – fill in the blank.
“I deserve Hell”. Do Christians really believe this? Most Fundamentalist Christians hate the science of biological evolution, because they think that evolution lessens the value of human life. Christians believe that if we are not uniquely designed by God, if we are a mere bag of molecules and chemical processes determined by the injudicious whim of natural selection, then our existence must have no value. And they readily accuse atheists of imposing this value system.
Yet these same Christians believe that they themselves are of so little value and self-worth when compared to God, that their lives are good for nothing more than to be objects of God’s wrath. A Christian believes that, by nothing more than the act of being born, by virtue of the doctrine of Total Depravity, every man, woman and child on the planet deserve nothing better than never ending torture.
Or a Christian is just supposed to believe this. But I cannot believe anybody outside of the most self-absorbed, flagellating penitent truly thinks so little of themselves that they deserve eternal torment, despite what they readily declare. I just can’t believe that. I sure hope not, anyway.
“I deserve Hell.”
Christians, please take this as sincere advice: When an unbeliever hears you say things like, “I deserve Hell,” they think you are crazy. Only the most abused and emotionally tortured will want anything to do with a mindset like this. If you use this line during a witnessing discourse, your potential convert will never be a Christian if it means having to develop a similar sense of self-worthlessness.
Trust me on this. I am saying this as someone who has preached the Christian faith many times. There is nothing attractive about declaring yourself worthy of nothing more than eternal damnation.
Dear reader, I don’t care who you are, what religious background you are from, what you have done or not done in this life, or what you believe or do not believe. You do not deserve Hell. Know that I am not out to de-convert Christians or win them to my side. But my one evangelistic plea that I will make is that you do not have to believe this lie anymore. You do not deserve hell. You have intrinsic worth apart from God. You *are* somebody!
I repeat my claim that Hell is perhaps the most cruel and inhuman invention of the mind that mankind has ever concocted. I can’t even begin to imagine the emotional anguish and mental torment that this superstition has caused over the centuries. The fear of Hell enslaves the soul and robs us of the ability to question our own beliefs. The fear of Hell fuels unquestioning, unthinking and rigid faith, and drives many of life’s downtrodden to fearfully accept conversion as if by gunpoint.
And nobody deserves that.
to be continued…