If God forgives, then why is there hell?

Religious folk, please explain.

Updates:
You still haven't answered my question except to say "because someone said so." Y'all can do better than that, surely.
I am suddenly reminded of why I am a staunch atheist.

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Most Helpful Girl

  • Cuz most religions thrive on fear. If there's no fear of a torturous gruesome hell, then there are obviously some people out there who think stealing and killing are not bad enough...

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What Guys Said 23

  • There didn't used to be hell but when Lucifer betrayed God and attempted to become god himself he was exiled from heaven and any angels who sided with him. Hell was originally created just for Satan and his followers ( the angels who betrayed god ), but later on Satan was able to deceive Eve who then in turn deceived Adam they both were tempted by him and ate the forbidden fruit, and came into this world, and sin was released into the word. Just like God, Satan does not force anyone to follow him he instead deceives, tricks and tempts people into following him.

    Later on Jesus, sacrificed himself on the cross so that we could ask for forgiveness for our sins and be forgiven, and we are given a choice between the two.

    God does not want any to go to hell, but he won't force people to follow him, he gives them a choice.

    Those who have been shown hell, and were brought back, depict it as a horrible place, devoid of gods presence, monstrosities, demons, suffering, fire, torture everywhere, multiple levels and special sections of hell reserved only for certain sins such as blasphemy and the cold blooded murder of children. It's the devils reign a place of evil.

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    • If God knows and understands *all*consequences, then didn't he create hell? I mean, he knew (for being omniscient) that the morning star would betray him and so on... But he still created him...

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    • That... that was actually quite awesome 😄 bravo, sir!

  • I think hell is a human construct rather than a pure religious one - Hell only came about when people differed from the people in power ( the hierarchy's friends ) and some form of damnation had to be created for different thinkers. If religion stayed pure to its origins I probably would still be religious

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  • Because he either doesn't forgive, or he's abusive. That'd be my guess anyways, but then again, I am not religious. For obvious reasons.

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    • Just to clarify not trying to pick a fight or anything God isn't abusive, he sent himself in the form of his son to die in the most painful way possible to pay for the sins of everyone else. Also he does forgive, all it takes to be forgiven is to ask

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    • Plus it's just about the only way to overtly sanction hate these days 😄

    • "i don't think they should be able to marry because a dusty old book sorta-kinda almost said so! ... and not because two dudes kissing gives me chubby at all!"

  • because it's not a very compelling story if everything is positive. plus, no one would seriously subscribe to the idea if there was no guarantee that those who did them wrong would face some kind of retribution. The concept of hell is a compromise - it still promises immortality, but also separation from eternal paradise for those who don't deserve it.

    But that's just the social reasons. I suspect the political reasons for hell had more to do with "the carrot and the stick" method of reinforcing ideals. Of course, I'm no expert on 13th century politics, so I couldn't say for sure..

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  • Because screw coherence.

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  • If you don't ask for forgiveness for you're sins, well, into hell you go. There was no hell until lucifer betrayed God.( lucifer aka Satan, devil) when the judgment day comes lucifer and the Angels he decived we'll be thrown into hell. Hell was only meant for satan and his demons, but he tricked Adam and Eve into eating the forbidden fruit. When they ate it, sin came into the world. Satan and his demons can only tempt, not force people to sin. There for be sobor, be vilaglint because the devil walks about like a roaring lion. Seeking whom he may devor. Satan and his demons will not enter hell alone. So whatever you do ask for forgiveness for you're sins.

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  • Short sweet and to the point. You have to believe that God sent his only son to die on the cross for the sins of the world and accept him as your Lord and Savior. From that you repent of your sins and ask for forgiveness. That is the most basic way I could word it.

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    • But he *knew* (being omniscient and all), that a lot of us wouldn't, butmade us thusly anyway... so... doesn't that make it his fault as much as ours?

  • I'm not religious but hell isn't really what is always depicted of physical suffering in a burning place. It's simply the lack of God's presence or hope of him which to Christians is the worst kind of suffering. It's simply a place for those that refuse to acknowledge his existence. It isn't meant as punishment it's just a place for those that don't care to become close to God.

    Heaven=Presence of God
    Purgatory=The hope of being with God
    Hell=No presence or hope for God.

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  • Would you believe me if I said hell is never specifically mentioned in the bible and was totally made up later because of people taking a part of a passage from Mark and then running with it?

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    • Its mentioned in Islam and Jewish religion...

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    • maybe there is a lack in the translation, or it have been corrupted.

    • The idea was shoehorned in from other religions and spun into the dogma. The "burning away" thing in Mark was less "eternal torment" and more "wiped from all existence on every level including memory". That's the problem with translations and translators biases happen, miscommunication is common, and some languages just don't have the right words to get the original meaning across. Now Gehenna translated out to a burning place or that whole lake of fire thing. But when it was said "they will be cast into Gehenna and burned away" it wasn't meant as the forever burn like Mark's furnace quote. It was away as in gone forever as I said before, which to me is infinitely more frightening.

      I wish I could read ancient Hebrew and/or Aramaic and Greek because there was so much left up for debate when the language barrier was hit.

      And sorry for going on long about it, it was always a great topic of interest for me.

  • Actually i think @pheonix98 has provided the best answer you're probably goning to get. The bible says for ALL have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. It also says for the wages of sin is death. But the free gift of God is eternal life through christ jesus our lord. You see God does forgive us for our sins but the avoid hell is to put your faith In christ. God gives us a choice to praise him or to not. And he remembers that choice when our judgment comes. In essence hell is there not because God isn't a forgiving loving God but because as humans we prefer to go our own way and be the god of our own lives. We are called to beleive in God with all our hearts, minds and souls, and to not beleive in God voids our ticket into heaven.

    Also i would like to take a moment to apologize fpr some of the answers you have received from "christians". These days a lot of people call themselves such but have no real relationship wirh God. These people are usually pretty easy to pick out because their wordsand actions don't line up with the faith they claim to have.

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  • *sits back in one of those little folding lawn chairs with an ENORMOUS bucket of popcorn and enjoys the mayhem*

    #thisishowyouparadox

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  • If you believe in Allah (God) and if you follow the teachings of the Quran and the Sunnah of the prophet Mohammad ( peace be upon him) then inshallah (God willing) you will go to Jannah ( paradise) ... I know this doesn't necessarily answer your question, I'm just being optimistic about waht will happen in the day of judgement :)

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  • Well different denominations view hell differently. Some people view hell as an actually place of fire and torture. The fire and brimstone view is the mainstream for these types. There are others that view hell as just being the absence of god and just disappearing when you die without following Jesus or whatever religion we are referring to. I've always questioned this too though.. The problem of evil is a difficult question to answer or to have a satisfying answer to.

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  • The way I look at it, either he doesn't exist, or he's not worthy of worship.

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  • If i killed you, the true God wouldn't give itself the right to forgive me instead of you.
    To escape hell we need God's forgiveness, and human forgiveness.

    An atheist who doesn't believe in God, doesn't believe in God's forgiveness, if he wants to be forgiven for being an Atheist, first of all, he has to believe in God's forgiveness, and unfortunately he can't believe in it and still an Atheist at the same time.

    A polytheist can call for help from his Gods, if they can rescued him, the true God wouldn't interfere.

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    • God delegates forgiveness to mere mortals? NEVER GO FULL RETARD!

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    • Atheists always pretend that they didn't understand so they can easily avoid answering some questions.

    • Really, darling, try harder.

  • God will forgive you for your actions, but that does not mean there aren't any consequences to your immoral actions

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    • But if God said "we're cool" why would there be consequences?

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    • Well I don't believe in eternal suffering i think that's bs
      I do believe however that there must be consequences for our actions that way we learn from our mistakes

      God isn't only loving and forgiving
      people make the mistake of thinking God is all about love
      God isn't about love it's about keeping a universe in balance

    • Also I am agnostic

  • The answer you will see a lot

    "Because god didn't put you there, you put yourself there."

    just for the record i don't believe in any of this, but this is a common response i see to this question

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  • Purely a figment of the religious imagination to scare people into doing what the religious tell them...

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  • God forgives if the person is truly sorry that they sinned, and asks for forgiveness admitting they are sinners.. Kind of like the whole "Naughty or nice" thing for santa, he knows if you're really sorry..

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  • You don't consider forgiven and someone still has to suffer is coherent?

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    • Not particularly.

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    • i'm talking about people their own, milady. people love themselves , but still doing something makes their body and their mind suffered.

    • the life is much more like a test.

  • Because of those who disbelieved him.
    because of those who did not repent.

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    • But he knew who would repent, and who wouldn't *before* he even made the world... But he still pulled the trigger...

  • Because the bibles makes us to understand that after death or when the trumpet is sounded for judgement, there is no chance for forgiveness or redemption

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  • In order to be forgiven one has to WANT and ASK for forgiveness.

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What Girls Said 8

  • Because Christian beliefs don't make any damn sense

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    • Atheist beliefs do? Get the fuck on somewhere.

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    • @bubbletrouble that which cannot be proven but is generally accepted by the scientific community is called a theory

  • I think some are not worth forgiving?
    Like atheists. I think God forgives those who are truly sorry for any sin they've committed or something?

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    • Atheists don't believe in hell so that's a non-issue.

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    • Atheism isn't a sin, but denouncing God is. If an atheist went about their own business they aren't sinning just because they're atheist, but if an atheist said something pertaining to "if he is real, God's an a**hole" that's a sin.

    • Ya, I think thats what I was referring to. Anyone is entitled to their own religion, whether it be one or whether its none at all. But speaking bad about God may be a bit over the limit.

  • I suppose hell is for the atheists, those who never had the chance to learn about god, and those who had the misfortune of believing in the wrong god.

    But murderers, rapists, and child molesters? Totally welcome, just ask god to forgive you! :D

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    • @puncakegirl

      And what about atheists who are good people? And good people who believe the wrong religion because their family/community taught them that it was correct?

    • Like I said Allah has his own critera for judging people which of way beyond our perception.

  • Hell was created for Satan and those who follow him, and when Adam and Eve sinned God gave the choice between him and Satan I. e. Heaven and Hell. Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice and if you acknowledge him as God's son and ask for forgiveness you can enter into Heaven (if you mean it wholeheartedly of course). If we don't acknowledge Jesus as God's son or his sacrifice for our sins then we go to Hell.
    I don't really know much about Hell itself, pastors, preachers, and what not, don't teach on it much, because I guess Christians don't have to worry about it, but it would be nice to know more about it. If I had my bible with me I would try to look up some verses to elaborate more on the subject, but I didn't bring it to work with me.

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    • Sounds pretty cult-like, ACCEPT ME AS THE SON OF GOD OR BURN IN HELLLLL

    • Lol, I guess that's an understandable view point.
      I don't really see Jesus as a hateful person, he befriended those that the Christians of that time hated, I. e. The prostiture and the tax collector, he also healed the soldier that was taking him to be crucified. I think Christians give Christianity a bad name, especially the radicals who tell people they're going to Hell.
      For me, the decisions pretty easy, I don't follow God because I'm afraid of Hell, but because of Jesus's sacrifice.

  • I think people generally have to ask for forgiveness. I'm not religious though, and I didn't pay loads of attention in Southern Baptist bible school.

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  • "Hell" is just a religious scare tactic to not commit "sins" or whatever they deem is immoral.

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    • Technically, if we use Hell as a scare tactic, it would be against those who aren't saved. Christians can be forgiven for their sins if they ask for it (wholeheartedly), so if we do sin we're not going to Hell. I can't speak for other denominations, but Baptists and Methodists believe once you're saved your always saved.

  • He forgives if you ask for forgiveness wholeheartedly with the intention of never committing that sin again. Then surely he will forgive you.
    But if you don't and die committing lots of sins without even being sorry. For that you will be punished

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    • God knew what he was doing even before he created the world, so why wouldn't it be at least partially *his* fault?

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    • He gave us a choice @fenixx0083

    • If you understand the outcome (s) of a system, and kick it on, you're not responsible for the outcome because its a very complex system?

      For example: if a monkey somehow got it's paws on a gun and managed to put a bullet in someone, we wouldn't (or at least wouldn't think) call it murder, because the monkey doesn't understand the consequences. A man/woman on the other hand *does* understand that trigger releases hammer, and so on, and we understand the outcome (or at least we understand probabilities), and thusly are accountable (even if you just point it up into the air, rather than directly at someone)... and as far as I understand, we don't even rate as good as the monkey does compared to us when we, in turn, are compared to God...

      He is Literally *infinately* more knowing about the consequences of all the actions that he set into motion by creating the earth and humankind, so why doesn't he bear the weight of those outcomes that he intentionally set into motion?

  • Apparently he only forgives if you really really mean it.

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