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Author Topic: How do I explain hell?  (Read 3886 times) Average Rating: 0
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Feanor
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« Reply #45 on: November 22, 2009, 03:25:48 AM »

I have a question about heaven and hell in Orthodoxy. According to traditional Orthodox doctrine, do human beings have the chance to get into heaven after they die? Is the search for God something that must be completed during life, or is the process of finding and becoming like God one which continued long after we die? Basically what I'm asking is, is the short amount of time on earth we have the only chance we have to be saved?
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John of the North
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« Reply #46 on: November 22, 2009, 03:31:32 AM »

I have a question about heaven and hell in Orthodoxy. According to traditional Orthodox doctrine, do human beings have the chance to get into heaven after they die? Is the search for God something that must be completed during life, or is the process of finding and becoming like God one which continued long after we die? Basically what I'm asking is, is the short amount of time on earth we have the only chance we have to be saved?

The process of attaining theosis is generally taught to continue after we die.

Keep in mind that Heaven or Hell are not "places" that you "go to." They are states of existence that result from being exposed to the fullness of God's loving Presence.
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"Christianity is not a philosophy, not a doctrine, but life." - Elder Sophrony (Sakharov)
Feanor
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« Reply #47 on: November 22, 2009, 10:27:03 AM »

I have a question about heaven and hell in Orthodoxy. According to traditional Orthodox doctrine, do human beings have the chance to get into heaven after they die? Is the search for God something that must be completed during life, or is the process of finding and becoming like God one which continued long after we die? Basically what I'm asking is, is the short amount of time on earth we have the only chance we have to be saved?

The process of attaining theosis is generally taught to continue after we die.

Keep in mind that Heaven or Hell are not "places" that you "go to." They are states of existence that result from being exposed to the fullness of God's loving Presence.

Thanks.

So, can a person who is experiencing 'hell' manage to escape it by coming to reject evil and understand and accept God's love?
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John of the North
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« Reply #48 on: November 22, 2009, 11:30:32 AM »

I have a question about heaven and hell in Orthodoxy. According to traditional Orthodox doctrine, do human beings have the chance to get into heaven after they die? Is the search for God something that must be completed during life, or is the process of finding and becoming like God one which continued long after we die? Basically what I'm asking is, is the short amount of time on earth we have the only chance we have to be saved?

The process of attaining theosis is generally taught to continue after we die.

Keep in mind that Heaven or Hell are not "places" that you "go to." They are states of existence that result from being exposed to the fullness of God's loving Presence.

Thanks.

So, can a person who is experiencing 'hell' manage to escape it by coming to reject evil and understand and accept God's love?

Yes. Vladika Ilarion says: "Thus, God didn’t create the hell for sinners, they did it themselves. God doesn’t send sinners to the hell, but people who oppose God’s will and revolt against God choose the hell themselves. And this choice is made in their earthly life rather than in some distant eschatological prospect. It is right here on Earth that infernal tortures and “the Kingdom of God come with power” begin."

There are people on this Earth who will begin to feel the torments of Hell now. The same with Heaven. The problem is that often those who begin to feel "Hell" have also fallen into one of Satan's traps: the Devil convinces them he doesn't exist. As a result, they may be so enslaved to sin that there is no hope for them. Of course, there is always the Love of God, yet they need to willing accept that love and repent. The Gates of Hell are locked from the inside.

---------------

This quote says it well: "Every single soul in hell has the full merciful forgiveness of God. What they do not have is the repentance to receive it. "I regret nothing" is spiritual suicide."

Don't know where I found it though. Smiley
« Last Edit: November 22, 2009, 11:50:04 AM by Ukiemeister » Logged

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« Reply #49 on: November 22, 2009, 06:35:51 PM »

So, can a person who is experiencing 'hell' manage to escape it by coming to reject evil and understand and accept God's love?

Yes.

This is not a definitive church teaching. Our priest taught us during catechesis that those who have rejected God in this life will no longer be able to turn back after death and are therefore destined towards hades, awaiting final judgement and final condemnation.
« Last Edit: November 22, 2009, 06:39:07 PM by Ortho_cat » Logged
John of the North
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« Reply #50 on: November 22, 2009, 07:07:17 PM »

So, can a person who is experiencing 'hell' manage to escape it by coming to reject evil and understand and accept God's love?

Yes.

This is not a definitive church teaching. Our priest taught us during catechesis that those who have rejected God in this life will no longer be able to turn back after death and are therefore destined towards hades, awaiting final judgement and final condemnation.

I also said in the same post:

"There are people on this Earth who will begin to feel the torments of Hell now. The same with Heaven. The problem is that often those who begin to feel "Hell" have also fallen into one of Satan's traps: the Devil convinces them he doesn't exist. As a result, they may be so enslaved to sin that there is no hope for them. Of course, there is always the Love of God, yet they need to willing accept that love and repent. The Gates of Hell are locked from the inside."

The Lord desires that all will be saved. Some will refuse to repent. As long as they are unrepentant, they will not turn back.
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« Reply #51 on: November 22, 2009, 07:19:00 PM »

So, can a person who is experiencing 'hell' manage to escape it by coming to reject evil and understand and accept God's love?

Yes.

This is not a definitive church teaching. Our priest taught us during catechesis that those who have rejected God in this life will no longer be able to turn back after death and are therefore destined towards hades, awaiting final judgement and final condemnation.

I also said in the same post:

"There are people on this Earth who will begin to feel the torments of Hell now. The same with Heaven. The problem is that often those who begin to feel "Hell" have also fallen into one of Satan's traps: the Devil convinces them he doesn't exist. As a result, they may be so enslaved to sin that there is no hope for them. Of course, there is always the Love of God, yet they need to willing accept that love and repent. The Gates of Hell are locked from the inside."

The Lord desires that all will be saved. Some will refuse to repent. As long as they are unrepentant, they will not turn back.

Fair enough.  I guess I just don't see this "hell on earth" concept. I just see so many happy sinners out there, it is hard for me to believe that Satan would not want his own to feel anything but bliss and contentment for all things worldly, so as to entice as many as possible. I think it is entirely possible for most people to hide from God's love on this earth.  The only difference in the afterlife is, this will no longer be possible. 
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John of the North
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« Reply #52 on: November 22, 2009, 07:41:14 PM »

So, can a person who is experiencing 'hell' manage to escape it by coming to reject evil and understand and accept God's love?

Yes.

This is not a definitive church teaching. Our priest taught us during catechesis that those who have rejected God in this life will no longer be able to turn back after death and are therefore destined towards hades, awaiting final judgement and final condemnation.

I also said in the same post:

"There are people on this Earth who will begin to feel the torments of Hell now. The same with Heaven. The problem is that often those who begin to feel "Hell" have also fallen into one of Satan's traps: the Devil convinces them he doesn't exist. As a result, they may be so enslaved to sin that there is no hope for them. Of course, there is always the Love of God, yet they need to willing accept that love and repent. The Gates of Hell are locked from the inside."

The Lord desires that all will be saved. Some will refuse to repent. As long as they are unrepentant, they will not turn back.

Fair enough.  I guess I just don't see this "hell on earth" concept. I just see so many happy sinners out there, it is hard for me to believe that Satan would not want his own to feel anything but bliss and contentment for all things worldly, so as to entice as many as possible. I think it is entirely possible for most people to hide from God's love on this earth.  The only difference in the afterlife is, this will no longer be possible. 

I recommend this blog post: http://fatherstephen.wordpress.com/christianity-in-a-one-storey-universe/

Also Fr. Stephen did a similar talk which is available on the Ancient Faith Radio Website under the OCF Podcast.
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« Reply #53 on: November 22, 2009, 09:02:13 PM »

Thanks, Ukie.  Smiley
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tweety234
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« Reply #54 on: December 10, 2012, 09:29:27 PM »

I've been following a discussion online with a former high school classmate (we both went to a Christian school, but he is now an atheist). The topic was hell. The question was "Why would a supposedly loving God create hell and condemn people to hell (for eternity!) simply for not believing in Him?"

I don't have a convincing answer; I find it safer (and more honest) to say "I don't know if so and so and such and such will go to Hell." Though I do think that those who call themselves Christians and lead sinful, hypocritical lives are hellbound and will richly get what they deserve.


Non will escape the Presence of the Great Holy and Awsome Eternal Flame! The wicked will hate it while the righteous will enjoy it like meshach shadrach and abednego.


We all will get hit with Holy Flame......for the Presence of the Flame will be Universal.

For our God is a consuming Fire and His Presence is everywhere!

Hebrews 12:28-29
"28Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, 29for our "God is a consuming fire."


So all will get hit with Fire! The wicked will hate it, while the righteous will love it.


Thus, the whole Kosmos will be like the Burning Bush.


I would try to get His attention away from the "eternal" aspect, and instead try and get him to focus on the fact that we all will get hit with Flame. Also try and get him to appreciate the reality of "mystery", for we don't know everything. And last but not least, pray for him.......both before, during, and after talking to him.







ICXC NIKA



so we better start learning to love fire, since we are all going to burn either way. right?
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