Can God save those in hell?


#1

Is God able to save those poor souls in hell? Or is it against his nature to be able to do so?


#2

Of course God CAN do anything!

But, He will NOT force anyone to love Him nor to desire to be with Him in Heaven.

Those “poor souls” who are in Hell are there precisely because they have chosen in this life not to love God nor to be with Him in Heaven.

Because of their positive hatred for God and what He stands for - they have made their choice of their own Free Will to go to that location where God is not!


#3

I agree that people choose sin. But God judges us when we die. It is a popular notion, it seems, to think that we choose/judge ourselves. I’m still unconvinced of that. I think the Church teaching is pretty clear that Jesus judges us. It’s also pretty clear that Hell is irrevocable. God could save us, but won’t.


#4

No, God cannot act against our free will, they made their choice to reject His offer of salvation, Hell is Eternal punishment.


#5

not without violating their free will, which they exercised in their irrevocable choice for hell. He cannot act against his nature, and his nature is to give his creatures with intellect–humans and angels–free will. He gave them all the knowledge they needed to make that full, free decision at the moment of death including the knowledge that the choice was for eternity and the full knowledge of what that meant, and they chose. They are in hell by their own choice and if He somehow abolished hell tomorrow they would still choose to remain separate from Him. If they were tranported to heaven it would still be hell for them, since they are unable and unwilling and abhor above all things to see the face and be in the presence of God.


#6

I don’t see how they would choose to stay in eternal torment, with the full knowledge that heaven could be theirs. Speaking hypothetically, of course.

Is hell a place or state of mind? Some theologians argue that we are all together, but some enjoy it and some detest it. I’m not sure that I agree with that philosophy, but it is interesting.


#7

The true God/s doesnt let poor souls go to hell. That wouldnt be the God/s otherwise. He lets the ones that deserve to be in hell go there, and im sure the leader of hell would welcome those people with open arms. And i’m sure before we take that chosen path, we will have our judgements!

Sean O L, please contact me for I have some very important information to share with you regarding SSPX. oz_outlaw@hotmail.com


#8

God can do ANYTHING infinitely beyond the wildest human imaginings.
It’s important to consider that Jesus spoke a lot about Hell. He clarified the situation clearly.


#9

The damned are 100% evil, so they don’t want God. They hate God. So the only way to save them would be to destroy their Free Will, and God respects them too much to do that.


#10

Hell is a state of being. It is separation from God. You see people in life who choose unloving behavior all around you. All that is unloving is separation from God, as God is Love. People choose what is unloving even though doing so hurts them. No one is happy being hateful or envious or jealous- all evil desires and behaviors make a person miserable. But people choose them anyway. They choose emptiness over fulfillment, misery over delight, hatefulness and vengefulness (which create pain) over peace and mercy, all of which create joy. They choose Hell over Heaven while still on Earth of their own choice. You see that all around you every day.

You know about drug-takers, smokers, people who cut themselves or immolate themselves. They also self-destruct, destroying their own bodies, defying God’s will in their behavior (he doesn’t want them to do any of that) and thus separating themselves from God. You see them too on Earth.

People on Earth choose misery and evil over the delights of God’s kingdom all the time on Earth. It’s all around us all. It’s not a big surprise that people do it in the afterlife too- that’s just a continuation and a completion of their behavior on Earth.


#11

theyDO have this full knowledge of the glories of heaven and union with God, and the alternative, eternal torment and full knowledge of all that implies, at the moment of death in the particular judgement, and they still choose hell, even tho they have full knowledge the choice is irrevocable. since we profess belief in the resurrection of the body, the bodies of the damned as well as of the glorified will be resurrected, so both will spend eternity in a place as well as a state of being.


#12

This is a question I have had a huge problem with in the past. One of the few that I have literally begged God for an answer to - and if I don’t get one I’m not sure I can believe.

They answer I got? “they won’t love my son”. This did confuse me for a while, then I realised two things.

  1. Some people just don’t care that God is God. Even if we could prove scientifically to them and they accept God is God, it just doesn’t matter. They’d rather be in hell than achknowledge a God greater than themselves. I have met people who have stated this themselves. There is a hatred for God in them.

  2. Those who are interested in the truth will seek it in this life. God will give everyone a nudge (at least) in his direction. Too many people will completely ignore it - if they ignore God in this world because of lack of interest in truth why would hell change their interest in truth? Sure, it is full knowledge but they were never interested in that to start with.

I can not look down on anyone who chooses not to adopt someone into their home that will not accept their son. No good parent would. For this reason hell is not a punishment. It is a fact of life. And some people would rather be there than accept and return the love of Christ.


#13

I read one middleages saint’s accounts of how she prayed for the soul of her dead nephew, a man previously of worldly means and wealth who was Catholic. This man routinely neglected to attend mass or receive the sacraments. Through this pious woman’s intercessions she had previously successfully petitioned God to release a number of individuals from purgatory and had visions and messages from God attesting to this. But when she petitioned God for a nephew that she loved God told her that her nephew was in hell. This greatly distressed the woman to her soul and she asked more fervently if there was anything that could be done. God told her ‘no, because your nephew did not love my Son and because I loved him too greatly to force him against his will to live in my eternal presence against his own desires.’

This really shook me up when I first read it. Apparently at death, in the absence of sanctifying grace those souls who are in mortal sin are supernaturally disinclined to love and unable to change their hearts - even knowing the consequences. It is said that this is due to pride and self love becoming predominant after God removes His universal grace at death. The soul does not have a capacity to love - really not even itself.

I mediated on this and came to realize that every sin we commit on earth is a sin of indifference to God. It is a rejection of God’s universal grace and a sin of pride. Therefor sin is a manifest preference of wanting to be one’s own god - the same sin committed by Lucifer before he fell. So, on earth, when we ignore our conscience to do wrong we are electing to reject God’s salvific grace and exposing ourselves to evil and inviting evil to dwell with us. Thus, those that never repent progressively remove themselves from God’s grace and it becomes progressively harder for a soul to consciously turn away from pride and ask for God’s mercy and healing from the consequences.

Fortunately, there is a sort of safety net for many of us through the consequence of sin. God is constantly pouring out His universal grace - ever calling us to repent and come to Him. So many on earth who sin gravely soon fall into such dire calamity and misfortune as a result of rejecting God (broken families, addictions, violence etc.) and to “do it their way” that the sinner’s pride is broken down. Many of these who become so pathetic in their inability to do anything good for themselves learn through their own experience or through a helping soul that God puts into their lives that its impossible to be happy and survive without His help. So God can use even sin to return souls to Him since such, stripped of pride and dignity through consequence of sin are able to return to God and petition His mercy and forgivness. It is those who return to God and then again permit themselves to relapse to fall away repeatedly who mock God’s mercy who are at most risk; since God will not be mocked. It is also those who in pride think themselves righteous and holy but who really live in mortal sin that Satan let’s alone with the intention of letting them die without recognizing their grave condition and to thereby die impenitent- the unforgivable sin against the Holy Spirit.

But St. Faustina tells us that somewhere in the final moments in that fuzzy interval in and near death God mercifully gives each soul a final call to mercy. This is why we need to pray the Divine Mercy chaplet for all our friends and loved ones - especially at the time of death. This chaplet (see my signature link) is said to be so profound and pleasing to God that He floods the soul with His final merciful grace in a such a way that the even the most grave sinner will be able to request His mercy and be saved.

James


#14

James:

Thanks. I’m in the processing of converting and I have been wondering if my belief contradicts catholic teaching at all. Good to know at least one catholic saint agrees.


#15

If these prideful people are unaware of their grave condition, would it then necessarily not be a mortal sin?


#16

I haven’t read any previous posts before me so I wont be commenting on anything thats been said before because I’m way to tired atm.

I don’t know if you’re the same - But I’ve also have had a hard time dealing with the issue of ‘Hell’ for the last couple of months now. As soon you somewhat become serious about your faith and you make the effort to learn more about it; and it becomes hard to avoid the topic of hell - and it is quite disturbing.

People continually claim that, “People send themselves to Hell”. I would have to disagree with this since the Bible clearly states that God judges us all. If God judges one then God makes the final decision - NOT the person. And seriously, if there is such a horrible burning Hell, I’m pretty sure nobody would want to go there.

I myself have come to a point where I cannot bother worrying about the issue of Hell anymore. Sure, I’ll eventually enter another phase where I want to seek more information about this issue. But at the moment the best I can do is live my life the best I can and do everything in my ability to live a Christ-life life.

If God is TRULY MERCIFUL - I believe all humans will have a final chance of true repentance in the face of God. Mercy is love, and love ALWAYS overpowers anything. And if God can do anything then he sure he save those people in hell. But the argument against that is that they chose to be there. But then I disagree with this kind of statement.


#17

The final decision is not to provide any more grace after a certain point. After that one’s will is fixed in regards to orienation toward God.

peace
Steve


#18

It’s not an either/or- you’re looking at it the wrong way. God judges and the people judge themselves. Remember, Peter told the Jews in the Book of Acts, “since you judge yourselves unfit for eternal life, I will go to the Gentiles.” In Romans 1, Paul says that God judged people by handing them over to homosexual desires as a punishment for their sins. Does that mean that God wanted them to sin? That he made them sin? No! And remember the scripture also that says, “God bound all men over to disobedience so that he might have mercy on them all.” Does that mean he destroyed their Free Will? No.

God gave men over to homosexual desires as punishment for idolatry (Romans 1) in the sense that their sin, their turning away from God, exposed them to devils because they rejected God’s protection. They rejected God’s protection so he didn’t force it on them. He “judged” them by allowing their sin to punish them. Similarly, in Corinthians, Paul said that a person who refused to submit to the elders should be thrown out into the hands of Satan. The man’s own evil choices caused him to become separate from the faithful. Paul judged him in one sense, and the man judged himself in another sense, through his own actions and evil choices separating himself from the community.

It’s the same with the scripture about God binding men over to disobedience. He allows their sins to punish them. That is the binding he does. He binds them in that he allows their sins to seize upon and enslave and destroy them because they reject eternal life.

That is what God does with damnation too. He doesn’t will for them to do evil, but he allows their own evil to punish them because they reject God’s protection and mercy. That is absolutely just.

I agree with you that God judges people- just as Paul judged the man by casting him out of the Church because he would not agree with it. How can someone be unified when he demands to be separate? He is judged by being allowed to go his own way and do his own thing. The judgment is the same sort described in Romans 1. God gave idolaters over to homosexuality not because he wanted to but because they would not accept his protection by adhering to his ways. So it was self-selected, even though he simultaneously judged them with it, because homosexuality is horrible and a punishment. They got what they deserved from God but simultaneously chose it for themselves. That’s what Hell involves.


#19

There are kids out there who are gay at a very young age. Sometimes kids as young as 6 clearly state themselves that they are attracted to the same sex. I don’t think these children have been punished by God…


#20

Feeling the temptation to commit an evil act is not the same thing as committing the act.

No practicing homosexual is obedient to God, so the sin of idolatry, or the rejection of the true God, just about always necessarily comes first.

Do you see what I mean, in my post, how God justly judging people with the negative consequences of their sin doesn’t contradict their choosing those consequences for themselves by their sins? You understand my point that both God and humanity can choose the same thing for humanity? Humans by committing it and God by allowing it to happen because they insist on it?


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.