The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Writing an Evangelical Universalist "Chick Tract"

This was brought up in a previous topic, so I thought I would bring it up in a separate topic. Lets make this a group a project (only for those who are interested, of course). Lets make something like a chick tract that teaches Evangelical Universalism instead of Eternal Torment. I think the first step is coming up with the story. Any ideas on a story/plot, and we can expand it into a script from there…

So, any story ideas?

How about an angry atheist protagonist who is disillusioned with the church for (among other things) telling him his grandma/girlfriend/little sister/etc. who’s funeral he’s just attended is now burning in hell? Oh, and Jesus loves him – wouldn’t he like to pray this little prayer, so that doesn’t happen to him?

lol, Cindy. :stuck_out_tongue:

How about somebody who actually GOES TO hell? It could start out looking like just another chick tract, and then end up with a surprise twist! :mrgreen:

Fake Jesus could torment the unbeliever, telling them they should’ve listened and that there’s no hope, only to rip off his mask and be revealed as the devil! heh.

Maybe the unbeliever will be tormented for a few ages to start with, continually berated by Fake Jesus and whipped into submission. Eventually the “non-believer” becomes better (not bitter) than his tormentor and proclaims that no loving Creator or Father could ever be like that, and perhaps he rips off the mask FOR him! :smiley:

“Ripping the Mask Off Hell” is perhaps what it could be called. :wink:

And then it will have the crucified Christ redeeming this person, saying that his death has conquered all, and that all evil is a bad nightmare. :slight_smile:

I was thinking also about one where religious leaders keep proclaiming, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not do this or that piddling thing…!?’ And one of them boasts about making tons of tracts that he printed in the millions. :wink:

I REALLY like this idea. It sounds really really good. Any seconds?

Perhaps the first couple pages could be his mother pleading with him to give up drugs and turn to Christ, but then he dies and goes to hell?

Sounds good to me :slight_smile:

haha, cool. Yeah, I guess it could go something like that. Maybe the drug-lust mindset makes his experience all the more trippy. :wink:

Well, I was thinking that the only thing keeping him in hell was his own feelings of guilt, and his misconceptions that hell were forever. Knowing that God and Jesus were real, and that he had wasted his life living for himself, he felt like he really did deserve hell (like we all do, in reality). Not realizing though that God is ever merciful, even beyond the grave.

I was thinking that, one “day” the poor ex-drugee looks up and asks the fake Jesus (like he had done hundreds of times before), “Why did you send me here?”

“I didn’t, you sent yourself here by your sinful life!”

At which point the young man gets an epiphany and says, “If I have sent myself here, then whats keeping me here?”

And the fake Jesus starts to stutter and fumble with words, at which point the young man rips the mask of the devil, and then with his hands in the sky shouts “Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me!” At which point he ascends to heaven.

In heaven, the young man could say, “But, I don’t understand. Hell is supposed to be forever*.” A footnote can breifl;y explain that aion denotes an undefined age, not eternity. The real Christ can end the comic saying, “Just as one trespass resulted in condemnation for all people, so also one righteous act resulted in justification and life for all people. For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners,** so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous**. (Romans 5:18-19, NIV)”

Love this thread - great ideas!

I’m really going to go (against the flow)^2 here, but really? Every person in the world that ever lived deserves to be tortured forever? Heck, does any person in this world deserve to be tortured forever at all? You realize the Bible never even states that, right? This rubbish is not any better than ECT tbh.

I want no association with any material that promotes that doctrine of human hate. And I suppose some versions of UR roll with that, but I’d ask if we kept it more… neutral.

By the way, nobody is going to worry about “deserving hell” after having oil poured down their month for an hour, trust me. They’ll only be worried about their personal condition at the time. And they’ll hate your God, very, very much, and they will be right, regardless of how much drugs they had during their life.

I didn’t say eternal hell. Hell, as I use it, is simply punishment for our sins in the next life. Everyone deserves to be punished for our sins since everyone has sinned. But hell is, at least in the way I use it, temporary and rehabilitative. The Bible uses certain metaphors for hell, but I don’t take any of these metaphors literally. No one knows what that punishment will be like, only that it will be punishment.

Fire is often used as a metaphor for hell, but it is often used metaphorically for the Holy Spirit. So hell is a place that the Holy Spirit cleanses the sins of the unsaved. It is punishment because as we watch their sins being burned away, it is agonizing to them to know the evil they caused. It is their own guilt that torments them, not God nor even Satan.

I appreciate your point Bird. And BTW I think you make some good points here: What is biblical justice? Is ECT just? .

I also can see byronarn’s position.

Now to be sure, ECT seems unjust to me, but ultimately, I must admit that, along with Francis Chan :astonished: (and many other traditionalists) that maybe my idea of justice is not as keen as God’s. Yet I won’t quote Isaiah 55:8 (“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, “declares the LORD. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”) completely out of context, as Francis Chan does, to support the case.

But the cool thing about EU, which you seem to acknowledge, is that it does not require us to view ECT as an undeserved punishment to still logically hold onto EU. Whether deserved or not, one still needs to find forgiveness in Christ cuz you can’t just go walking into heaven with your sinful nature in an unredeemed state.

But you also imply that if we view ECT as deserved then that means we are condoning “hate”. While that may be true of traditional Calvinists, when an EU person believes ECT is deserved they are merely stating a fact (in their understanding) about what justice requires. By way of analogy, just because I agree with a human judge that a bank robber deserves to be locked up for 20 years with hard labor, doesn’t mean I hate that person. It doesn’t mean that if it was my brother on trial, who I loved, that I suddenly stopped loving him. It just means I agree with the sentence.

Of course we would not want an EU tract that a person like yourself could not not “sign off” on BUT if we present ECT as an inappropriate punishment, then that is all a traditionalist will focus on. For example they’ll say “Those EU people don’t want to admit how serious sin is. They think that all a person has to do is ‘serve his time’ to get out of the hell-jail.” If a traditionalist gets hung up on this point they may fail to see that the main thing about EU, which is that whatever Christ did for some, as evidenced by faith in this life, He did for all, as evidenced by faith in the next life.

So yeah, I can see how a “neutral” position is a good idea.

This is an interesting thread. I used to like those Chick tracts and still have many of them. I think the “person in hell” scenario is a good idea. It reminds me of a Chick tract called “The Letter” where an unsaved person in ECT is granted permission to write a letter to her saved best friend, still on earth. It basically lays a guilt trip on the saved friend for never having shared the gospel with the unsaved friend while the unsaved friend was still alive on earth. Of course, in the tract, if she had shared the gospel that would have made all the difference and the unsaved friend would have gotten saved and ended up in heaven. The saved friend must then live out the rest of her days knowing that it was her fault that here unsaved friend will rot in hell for an eternity. :imp: Chilling! A true triumph in Arminian motivation for evangelism. :unamused:

I had another idea to throw into the mix :bulb: : How 'bout a tract that illustrates what happens to the psyches of people who believe in ECT? We could call it “Night of the Living Calvinists”. :open_mouth: (Please don’t get mad at me Jason. It was a slip of the keyboard. :blush: Sorry jaxxen. :mrgreen: ) Anyway, just think of the graphics. :smiling_imp:

Most folks have no idea what a Calvinist is. :wink:

My only beef with the drugie in hell idea is the inaccuracy. Now, the symbolic accuracy is okay, I guess, but the idea that:

  1. the devil is tormenting this person (while impersonating Christ)
  2. the torment is literal (something you can see clearly – whips? iron maiden? hot poker?)

kind of doesn’t work for me. I just don’t see hell being much like that. Of course, subtle things (psychological tribulations?) are much more difficult to show in a graphic format, so I can surely see the merit of the literal approach. Still, it perpetuates a myth that many people actually literally believe in . . . .

Just my thoughts; nothing vehement. Just tossing this into the mix for your consideration.

Blessings, Cindy

Obviously we really have a clue on how it will happen, exactly.

I generally believe it should start with a neutral experience that is neither good nor bad specifically. The person will probably become aware that “Christianity is true”, and then they’ll start worrying. Then they can meet some stern angel who’ll lecture them on their life and what’s going to happen to them. The person should become scared/resist and probably express somehow that they expect ECT, to which the angel could reply with a clarification.

My apologies, then. But, you should be aware that Hell means what anyone wants it to mean, so it’s a really nondescriptive term these days. :laughing: I generally associate the term “Hell” directly with ECT, because myself I prefer to use Gehenna or Lake of Fire.

Cindy Skillman :

Yeah Cindy I know whatcha mean. But that’s what the graphics are for! :laughing:

What is this, Max Payne? Undying?

:laughing: Fired up!

You’re too much. :wink:

For any interested readers who have never seen a Chick tract, here are a few excerpts from “The Letter” I mentioned earler:

The whole tract is here BTW There over 100 different approximately 22 page booklets. They are very entertaining.

looks at Matthew 5:29-30, 10:28

doesn’t find anything there even remotely resembling the tract


And Ezekiel seems to speak about people being wicked, i.e., doing bad things? What does that have to do with anything?

I also love how it, yet again, diminishes everything humans do except telling them about Jesus. Hello, witnessing? And, Quakers would want to have a word with you…

What am I thinking, Chick Tracts aren’t supposed to make sense.