Sermon: The Joy of Judgment

It was a joy preaching at Westlynne Baptist in North Vancouver, where my good friends Sam and Esther Chua minister. The text was Isaiah 30:27-33 and the title was “The Joy of Judgment.”

Article at The Light Magazine

Thanks you to The Light Magazine for publishing an introduction I wrote to Is There Anything Good About Hell? The article begins, “I wish there was no such thing as hell.” It was a statement written by one of my favorite bloggers, a theologically-oriented brother with whom I usually agree. The rest of the article was helpful, but this one sentence didn’t sit right in my soul. Could we simply do away with the doctrine of hell? Is the only reason we hold to the eternal punishment of the wicked – of those who fully and finally reject God in their sin – the fact that it is there in the Bible? What would we lose if we lost the doctrine of hell? See more below

Is there anything good about Hell?

Hell and Revival: A Presentation at Westwood

It was a great privilege and blessing to present the thesis of my book to Westwood Community Church where my dear friend and fellow soldier Pastor Giulio Gabelli is the Pastor. I had the opportunity in 30 minutes to present the thesis of my book with a brief overview of each of the chapters on the “good” aspects of hell, and then also to make a particular application to revival and evangelism. There are strong reasons to think that when revival comes it will be by the means of Christians speaking the truth boldly of the fruits of evil in eternal punishment. Click below to see the Facebook post and video.

With permission from and thanks to Westwood!


Interview with Laura-Lynn Thompson

I joined my good friend Laura-Lynn Tyler Thompson on her show earlier today to talk about some of my advocacy as well as introducing Is There Anything Good About Hell? I encourage you to check out Laura-Lynn’s shows. Whether you find you agree or disagree with her and her guests, she is a bold truth-teller and consistently has high quality and knowledgeable guests on her shows discussing stories that won’t be in the mainstream media.

My segment starts at approximately 38:30.

The Sow37 Podcast “Page-Turner” Interview with Robin Martens

I had a blast (is that allowed when you are discussing hell?) talking about eternal punishment with Pastor Robin Martens at Kinnaird Park Community Church in Castlegar. He has been doing a fantastic series on the topic of hell, and we discussed the thesis of my book. Around half-way through the episode I give a brief rundown of the six reasons (chapter 5-10) why hell is “good”, which may be helpful. Even if you don’t listen to me, I encourage you to check out a theologically rich, in-depth podcast by a brother who has a heart for the truths of God’s word. Oh, and he called the book a “page-turner”, which for a theologically-intense book is pretty much the nicest thing anyone could say about. So there’s that.

PS: Also check out Robin’s episode with my good friend Barton Priebe.

Justice and Mercy: A Reply to Thomas Talbott, Robert Holyer

Not many answers, but some penetrating philosophical questions for Talbott and his account of "justice" in his universalism.

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I shall confine myself to his claims about the relation of justice and mercy, which are not only central to the essay but also probably the weakest and least developed part of his larger project of defending the universalist view of salvation.
Normally, one of the essential differences between the two concepts is that justice is based on desert whereas forgiveness is not. Talbott, however, insists that mercy and justice are both deserved, that God is obligated to forgive us.
Retributive justice is a matter of settling for less than the best, of bringing a measure of truth and equality when the deed and some of its consequences cannot be undone. We execute a murderer or imprison a rapist not to restore the victim, but to settle accounts when restoration is not possible. And in this justice of the appropriate sort is done.
Talbott  is right, there is something odd about saying that punishment 'cancels' the crime, and retributivists have often been guilty of such talk. However, I think there is something equally odd about the suggestion that future reconciliation and restoration 'cancels' the crime.
In other words, what Talbott needs to develop is a notion of justice. Without it, claims that mercy and justice require the same thing are at best premature. Indeed, without it, one worries that Talbott may not be interested in advancing serious claims about justice at all.

The Most Encouraging Book About Hell Ever, Thor Ramsey

Engaging popular level book on why hell glorifies God. The doctrine is good, the humour is... usually good.

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The new doctrine of hell, as you’ll see, is simply not effective: “Repent or… nothing of serious consequence will happen to you.”

Hell glorifies God. I know. Exactly. It’s the halitosis of theological thinking, but it is truth nonetheless. And that is the simple premise for this book: hell glorifies God. That’s why I take delight in it.

Chapter 1
But tell me this. If there is nothing more than a non judgmental Santa-god out there, why do human beings desire justice in the first place? If there is only a Santa-god, why do I both judge my mother’s mean-drunk husband and condemn him in my heart? Woe is me… why can’t I be more like Santa Claus?

Chapter 4
If God loves you just the way you are, there was no reason for Jesus to die on a cross for you. The point frequently missing from the gospel these days is that God doesn’t love you just the way you are.

Don’t be misled into thinking that only pagans, whores, politicians, and comedians end up in hell. Hell will be full of respectable people, Good Joes, like school teachers and doctors and nurses and firemen. Churchgoers, even.

The revisionist view of the afterlife treats sin with kid gloves. It gives people who have no hope a false hope that they can come to Jesus anytime— now, later, sometime after you die, when you feel like it, doesn’t matter very much… it’s all good. Look, I’m sorry, but that’s a message of damnation. It’s not the gospel. It’s not from the Bible. It’s a hellish lie.


Doom Eternal, J.B. Remensnyder

One of the most comprehensive works on hell ever produced with major sections on the church fathers, the creeds, and exegetical and grammatical proofs of the eternality of hell.

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When , therefore , our blessed Lord , piercing with his infinite glance to the utmost bounds of the hidden future , and summoning its everlasting scope within his vision , deliberately declared that Judas , who was to travel all along its endless course , would better never have been born , he meant that the furthest deeps of futurity contained no succeeding crown of bliss that was to balance his foregoing burden of misery , and accordingly that his punishment was to be unremitting .

But if the Scriptures put them into hell , and by not the remotest intimation take them out again , we have no other recourse than to leave them where the infallible Word of God leaves them , viz . , “ to dwell with everlasting burnings ” ( Isa . xxxiii . 14 ) .
The “ destruction , ” then , of the Bible is not annihilation of existence , but of blessedness . It is not the extinction of being , but of happiness . It is not the end of life , but of hope . It is perishing not in a natural or physical , but in a spiritual sense . It is “ that state of separation from God in which all the higher faculties of human nature are working falsely and discordantly ; in which the true end of being is discarded , and its true enjoyment lost ; and in which there is , at last , the complete extinction , not of the soul's being , but of its well being . ”
It is not then the mere outposts but the very citadel of faith itself which is the real object of these covert efforts . Yielding a little to the enemy , soon the innermost sanctuary will be broken into and desecrated . If today we abandon what may seem indifferent , tomorrow we will be summoned to surrender the very fundamentals .
Well , then , there was no eternal death for Christ to die for . If infinite love must render impossible such an everlasting condemnation to woe , why did not Christ let that necessary bar stand in the way be tween men and perdition , instead of coming himself and exposing his own infinitely precious soul and body to the stroke of Almighty wrath , until a cry of nameless agony was wrenched from his lips , and the very heavens grew black with appalling horror at his infinite woe ?