This article in the New York Times is good for a few laughs. Apparently some so-called Bible scholars are suggesting that those who go to hell don't really have to suffer for eternity, just for "a few decades" before God says they are off the hook. A good example of how theologians just make this up as they go along . . . 

Tormented in the afterlife, but not forever

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I'm not so sure these people have read the same bible that I did. Back in my day it was explained that god did not send you to hell. Instead, you sent yourself to hell by not obeying. I mean, how could a loving and compassionate god send you to hell? In those days they didn't even tell you how god delighted in the bashing of babies' heads upon the rocks. Now the push is on again more and more that god is LOVE. If this is true then hell must only be temporary then, right?

Could it be that as more people are leaving the churches today the shepherds are worried about fleecing the flock?

Just wondering.

They're not as worried about fleecing the flock and preventing them from escaping from the barn. They trying to plug the leaks but can't seem to make the belief system air tight. 

So many about-faces and turn-arounds!  How they're even saying it's ok to be gay.  And that's after destroying thousands of lives.

I once wrote a blog piece where a Cardinal Sardino in the '50s apologized for the holocaust of the Inquisition saying, "it was a sad episode of church history." Millions of victims, mostly women, were immolated at witches.  It was a "sad episode." 

They're main god should be Proteus who could change shape and form at will according to the circumstances.

And do I really have to go to heaven after that?

If you go for traditional burial that will never happen. First your body is in a coffin that is well sealed and lastly that coffin is placed inside a concrete vault so your body "does not contaminate the ground." Believers see this as a good thing because the religion of resurrection says that your body must be intact. (They actually claim that in heaven you will look like you did at your best and in your prime, and that you will look that way forever.)

Cremation, on the other hand, gets rid of any "contamination" ideas and also does allow you to return to the elements that you came from.

Yes, I have heard of that. I wonder if it is legal in all states?

I enjoyed the description of heaven and hell in Heinlein's "Job" very much.

Job was a hoot and no mistake.  Should have been Heinlein's fifth Hugo Award!

They can do this because hell itself is not defined in the Bible. It was created by pasting a few unrelated quotes together, and building a whole myth around it.

Mark Twain: Heaven for the climate, hell for the company.

Actually hell is well defined in the Bible but it grew as time went on. When it started out hell was simply the grave. We get to a verse then where man is saying of god "thou will not leave my soul in hell" possibly meaning "even when I am dead I know you are not done with me." The hint would be of a future resurrection, but appologetics comes along to build more on a "doctrine" and you end up with what they are saying now.

Going to hell becomes no more than a Monopoly game and eventually everyone gets a "get out of jail free" card. How lovely. Now the church thinks once again that it can count on you to give it more money.

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