GUEST COLUMN
A Voice from Hell

November 2007By Richard D. Courtney

Richard D. Courtney, who writes from Muncie, Indiana, is author of Normandy to the Bulge: An American Infantry GI in Europe During World War II (Southern Illinois University Press, 1997).

Este artículo: en español

Everyone has heard of Hell. But most of us just brush it off. We aren't going there, so why worry? We have better things to think about.

I used to think that way too, but now I am in Hell and it is horrible. Constant pain and no one can help me.

The day I died and faced Jesus Christ the Judge, I was all ready with my excuse list, which I had rehearsed while I was still alive. Surely He would understand and make an exception in my case. I'd be O.K.

Before I could open my mouth, He held up His hand and said to me, "Depart from Me into everlasting fire." And that was it. No second chance, no appeals, no hope.


You have two options:

  1. Online subscription: Subscribe now to New Oxford Review for access to all web content at newoxfordreview.org AND the monthly print edition for as low as $38 per year.
  2. Single article purchase: Purchase this article for $1.95, for viewing and printing for 48 hours.

If you're already a subscriber log-in here.



Back to November 2007 Issue

Read our posting policy Add a comment
I think the reason we don't ever see real evidence of Hell like this letter is that the people who are there are consumed by hate. They would never try to help anybody here because they hate us. Posted by: charlesmary
November 09, 2007 01:25 PM EST
Thanks, NOR editors, for this writing on Hell.

As a retired guy,if I were a betting man, I'd wager half my 401 (k) plan that we Roman Catholics in America would never hear this from the pulpit at the ten o'clock Sunday Mass. Is there a priest in America with the chutzpah to preach on hell? Me thinks not!!!

At least that's how I see it.
Posted by: John
November 13, 2007 09:19 AM EST
I rememeber when the move was taken to stop the preaching about hell and make it all about love. Now people all around us wring their hands about hurting someone's feelings if they break the law and have to be incarcerated. One young lady told me several years ago that, since Jesus died for us, our sins are forgiven and we can do anything we want as we are already saved. She's in jail seving 10 years at the moment. Freedom, justice, love, marriage all take a lot of work and demand that we follow in Christ's path. If not, ... well
A couple of weeks ago, a priest started his sermon by assuring us that he was not going to preach about hell and damnation - he didn't - maybe he should have (or at least teach us about the life issues and their relation to the social justice issues before the next election)
Posted by: wunsch
November 29, 2007 05:17 PM EST
This article, while it gets people thinking about hell, seems theologically inaccurate. I don't think anyone in hell really wants to help any of us avoid it. I think that some of the them there may be compelled by God to do so, especially by being examples of His justice. But this article paints a vignette that is too flowery for my tastes.

Hell is more awful than anyone could imagine. Hell means effectively being hated by Christ. Imagine being ridiculed by fallen angels (with their angelic intellect) forever because of the choice to squander the incredible gift offered of a share in the Divine Nature. Then there is the never-ending remorse that will ultimately include a physical body to share in the immense suffering.

I've read many times that the more indelible spiritual marks the soul has upon it from baptism, confirmation and orders, the more miserable it will be in hell. Just as there are differing degrees of glory in heaven, so too there will be different levels of misery in hell.

Try adding the word "not" after 1 Corinthians 2:9 and think about it for a while.
Posted by: Hammer of Heretics
December 01, 2007 12:58 AM EST
Hell is freely chosen. As such, those who are there probably think, like Sartre, that hell is other people. The more the merrier! Posted by: Carl Sundell
December 06, 2011 09:55 AM EST
Add a comment


©