The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Is Hell Biblical


The following is a recent e-mail from my friend Jonathan Mitchell, translator of the Jonathan Mitchell N.T.

Recently seven of us on the hell verses project team met in Denver at Peter Hiett’s church, The Sanctuary Downtown (Denver) to discuss some of the issues surrounding our understanding of the bible and the teaching of hell.

David and Elaine Lubbers along with Michael Hanna recorded our discussions.

There will be eight 20-30 minute videos from this effort entitled The Successful Savior Series on YouTube. This link will go to part one: “Is Hell Biblical?”


Thanks for the link to this series which is dedicated to the memory of Gary and Michelle Amirault of Tentmaker Ministries. Peter Hiett is one of my heroes and one of the first people that I heard preach Evangelical Universalism. Also check out one of his websites…

There’s a link to some fantastic videos from the likes of Robin Parry, Brad Jersak, Paul Young and Ilaria Ramelli etc. from the Forgotten Gospel Conference


Dear Kenanada: I appreciate the links & fully expect to explore them. Gary A. & his precious wife were both friends of ours. It was actually Michelle who was grasped by Jesus Christ first. Gary at that time an atheist, set out to prove her experience & her God false. Tentmaker happened down the road after our glorious Lord grasped Gary as well for Himself. It is wonderful these folks have dedicated this onoing series to a wonderful expression of His love & grace, Gary & Michelle.

Gary & Michelle


I watched the Parry video last night. It would have been good if had written about the trinitarian implications of hopeless punishment in his book TEU. That was the most interesting part of his speech IMO. Maybe he will in a future book?


Is Hell Biblical? Part 2 of 7


Death Yes

Hell No

How is it that God’s warning, “…for in the day you eat thereof, you shall surely die,” has, by strange inference, effectively morphed into “…for in the day you eat thereof you will start down the path toward everlasting damnation?” (As an aside, the more accurately translated Hebrew has the original statement as “…for in the day you eat thereof, dying you shall die.”)

Continued below>>>>>

Death? Yes; Hell? No

“We all must die and are like water spilled on the ground that cannot be gathered up again. But the Lord does not take away life. instead He devises ways for the banished to be restored”


I say, “Hell, yes!”

It’s just the wrong concept of hell (as everlasting torture as penal punishment) that is patently false. As i see it, hell is one of God’s gracious and loving means to correct the characters of people. No one will receive any more discomfort that is absolutely necessary, but God will never give up on anyone until that person submits to Him, coming under His authority.


Dear Paidion: many moons ago when John Gavazzoni was deeply involved in Youth for Christ, the Lord asked him, "do you really believe that of me? His immediate response was “well no Lord I do not.”

All aspects of the ONE intimately referred to as ABBA is to bring every last broken wreck home to Himself changed and transformed by the fire of His Presence as the God who IS consuming fire. Thru the Lake radiating with His breath (theion) & as the consuming fire of His essence, there is nothing escapes His mighty grasp!

The Way to the Tree of Life

Is it not strange the long seasons that can elapse on the back-side of the desert? Year by year falls into the great abyss, and at the juncture where we can no longer speak, and the great struggle to do the will of God vanishes into weakness and death, the Bush appears pulsating with Deity. It is there at the asamuth of death and weakness the Living One speaks.

"Take off your shoes from off your feet"

Holy ground!

The place where dust and Divinity meet! It is there in absolute weakness and inability, the Lord manifests Himself as the God who raises the dead. The road into the Tree of Life is by way of the flaming swords swirling in every direction. Those who reach for the Tree will suffer the loss of the hand, the fingers, the grasp of all they are! And as the process of the swirling swords rage upon these ones, great loss is inflicted, for nothing, no one, comes to the other side the same as it enters…


The great stages of the Living One’s glory must be in degrees of doxa. We are changed from one degree of glory to another and another! It requires a thought beginning in the mind of the caterpillar that ultimately leads to the building of a cocoon from which caterpillars become butterflies, and dust moves from the road of life into the Divine One, described as “the Living”, the “I am”, not the I was, the I AM.

It is this Heavenly Road that grasps us, the Heavenly One, the Source leading to the Road, the sustaining Guide of the Road, and the Goal of the Road. All things lead to Him, through Him and for Him! And by Him all things consist. It has taken F.L. over 70 years to go a journey that could be accomplished in 11 days, but dust and Divinity must meet; the goal is not all the story, the path is of equal value in the I AM! Each of us are on different stages of our Father’s drawing hand, some so wrapped up in themselves they cannot see the bush that is aflame and is not devoured. It is just a common bush for many, but

"Earth’s crammed with heaven, and every common bush afire with God; and only he who sees takes off his shoes. -Eliz. Barrett Browning-

Are our broadest hopes broad enough? Shall there be a nook or abyss, in all the universe of God, finally unlightened by the Cross? Shall there be a sin, or sorrow, or pain unhealed? Is the very universe, is creation in all its extent, a field wide enough for the Son of God?


I don’t know what you are trying to tell me, FL. Are you saying that God will not correct anyone in the next life—just take 'em all in whether their hearts are wicked or not? Whether they hate Him or not?


Dear Paidion: There is only one way to come Home to Abba That road is by, thru, in fire. Our God takes nothing into His Presence without radical transformation! No just “take 'em all” minus the flaming swords!


I believe God will accept all, your unfortunate position is that the context has to be viewed from a Christian biblical standpoint, so your judgments and conclusions are all based on reading the ‘BIBLE’ and telling folks why and where they are wrong. Every denomination does it and has done it for all of the last 2000+ years. You are wrong, I am wright, you are lost, I am saved. My position is that if we consider God as all in all, and consider the biblical narrative as a particular lens from a particular time, we can learn to love each other without using words like-

'just take ‘em all in whether their hearts are wicked or not? Whether they hate Him or not?’

Love will win.


But isn’t that exactly your position? That Jesus’ death covers everyone, and that no one has to do anything to be accepted by God because Jesus did it all for us?


Actually no, God did what he did through the Christ… There is a distinction there. You consider the work of Christ as a yet to happen position that comes from Gods fiery refinement of a person to get them to accept what God wants to bend their will too, I maintain what God wants was done through Christ… Already, done, has happened never to be addressed again.

Thus our ongoing impasse.:wink:


“Fathers and teachers, I ponder, ‘What is hell?’ I maintain that it is the suffering of being unable to love.” Fyodor Dostoyevsky - The brothers Karamazov

Perhaps we can view things this way. We are hanging off a cliff. And Christ throws a rope down. That’s his gift. But we need to climb the rope itself, in order to get to safety.

It also brings to mind, a Zen story:

A man traveling across a field encountered a tiger. He fled, the tiger after him. Coming to a precipice, he caught hold of the root of a wild vine and swung himself down over the edge. The tiger sniffed at him from above. Trembling, the man looked down to where, far below, another tiger was waiting to eat him. Only the vine sustained him.

Two mice, one white and one black, little by little started to gnaw away the vine. The man saw a luscious strawberry near him. Grasping the vine with one hand, he plucked the strawberry with the other. How sweet it tasted!