Hell and the Glory of God

Jim Hamilton asks the question, "Would Rob Bell rob God of glory?" The question is appropriate for anyone who dismisses the biblical doctrine of hell.

Dr. Hamilton writes:

If there’s no hell, God can’t be trusted because he doesn’t keep his word and therefore doesn’t do justice, and if there’s no justice, mercy has no meaning.

If you don’t understand what I just typed: “if there’s no justice, mercy has no meaning,” keep thinking about it. Look the words “justice” and “mercy” up in a dictionary (click them and read the definitions on dictionary.com).

In addition, if there’s no hell, the Bible’s big story doesn’t make sense.

How does hell glorify God? Glad you asked: let’s take a narrative look at hell.

Here’s the conclusion to the short piece linked above:

“In sum, hell glorifies God because

■ it shows that he keeps his word;
■ it shows his infinite worth, lasting forever;
■ it demonstrates his power to subdue all who rebel against him;
■ it shows how unspeakably merciful he is to those who trust him;
■ it upholds the reality of love by visiting justice against those who reject God, who is love;
■ it vindicates all who suffered to hear or proclaim the truth of God’s word;
■ and it shows the enormity of what Jesus accomplished when he died to save all who would trust him from the hell they deserved. If there were no hell, there would be no need for the cross.”