Do more people go to hell or heaven?


#1

I had a conversation with a colleague of mine and this topic came up and I sadly concluded that Jesus himself claimed the road to hell was far more travelled then the path to heaven. I can only conclude that the majority of people go to hell. He was astounded and retorted it was not for me to judge beside the passage only refers to the number of paths to hell and the number of people in hell.

Do you think I have misinterpreted Matt. 7:13 or has my friend?

God Bless


#2

While we cannot judge that any particular person has gone to Hell, and only the Church can authoritatively determine if someone has gone to Heaven, I am sad to report that you are correct. Jesus said very clearly that the road to Heaven is narrow and that many travel down the wider path (which obviously doesn’t go to the same place.


#3

When Jesus said for us to strive to enter through the narrow gate, he was saying that there is a straight, narrow walk towards Heaven that has been set for us to follow, that will make our destination surer than other ways. This is not to say that those who miss the narrow gate will not find Heaven; it is suggesting that many will not take the surest path, and will venture far from the main entrance, and that some will wander away from the path altogether.

On the other hand, we are also given to know that God wills that all should seek Him out and be saved. Yet we all have our own wills getting in our way. But can we get in God’s way? It’s a mystery. We should work out our salvation with fear and trembling as St. Paul said, but never despair of God’s love and mercy, and to be ever thankful, to pray without ceasing, and to be joyful.


#4

[quote=Deacon2006]I had a conversation with a colleague of mine and this topic came up and I sadly concluded that Jesus himself claimed the road to hell was far more travelled then the path to heaven. I can only conclude that the majority of people go to hell. He was astounded and retorted it was not for me to judge beside the passage only refers to the number of paths to hell and the number of people in hell.

Do you think I have misinterpreted Matt. 7:13 or has my friend?

God Bless
[/quote]

I agree with you Deacon2006. There are so many people who reject God and do as they want. I would say that a majority will go to Hell. There is nothing wrong with what you said.


#5

Most people are going to hell… This is a biblical truth.


#6

Sorry Cherub, but there is only one gate and that is through Christ. I agree with Christ, few find the “NARROW gate”. I also agree that God desires ALL men to find it. But there are ample examples in scripture that many do not find it. While God desires ALL men to be saved, where in the scriptures can anyone point where ALL men ARE saved? Wishful thinking is no substitute for good theology.


#7

so far so good, but listen to today’s gospel and be very, very careful about assuming that you are on the narrow road rather than the highway.


#8

[quote=GWitherow]Sorry Cherub, but there is only one gate and that is through Christ. I agree with Christ, few find the “NARROW gate”. I also agree that God desires ALL men to find it. But there are ample examples in scripture that many do not find it. While God desires ALL men to be saved, where in the scriptures can anyone point where ALL men ARE saved? Wishful thinking is no substitute for good theology.
[/quote]

I have neither stated nor suggested there is any other way to Heaven except through Christ, or that all men are saved; I am saying that many who are seeking Christ outside Holy Mother Church may also find Him. We cannot in our human vanity set up boundaries for what God will and will not do. He can do anything He wants.

I am saying that we cannot know who God will save and who He won’t. It is a mystery. We must accept it as such and not lose heart brooding over what we cannot understand. It is more important to keep our minds and hearts on God, to trust in His great goodness and mercy, and to remain joyful.


#9

[quote=Cherub]I have neither stated nor suggested there is any other way to Heaven except through Christ, or that all men are saved; I am saying that many who are seeking Christ outside Holy Mother Church may also find Him. We cannot in our human vanity set up boundaries for what God will and will not do. He can do anything He wants.
[/quote]

Find Him in what way?

There’s also Jesus in Islam. There’s also Jesus in Baha’i.

If you’re thinking that outside the Church they can find the fullness of Jesus and saved because of it than you’re violating the eternal dogma of Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus.

I am saying that we cannot know who God will save and who He won’t. It is a mystery. We must accept it as such and not lose heart brooding over what we cannot understand. It is more important to keep our minds and hearts on God, to trust in His great goodness and mercy, and to remain joyful.

We can not know who God will save but we know that those who are not joined to His body in the last nanosecond of his/her death he will be thrown to the pit of hell. That is the dogma of the CHurch protected by the holy Spirit which is God Himself.


#10

[quote=beng]Find Him in what way?

[/quote]

I’m only referring to our “separated brethren,” such as those in Protestant denominations who still have a valid baptism but do not have the fullness of the truth as is found in our Church.

Muslims deny that Christ is the Son of God. They consider Him only to be a prophet – and secondary to their Mohammed at that. That is a complete and willful denial of Christ, and if they have been given the truth but have denied it, then no salvation. They are infidels.


#11

[quote=beng]If you’re thinking that outside the Church they can find the fullness of Jesus and saved because of it than you’re violating the eternal dogma of Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus.

[/quote]

This can not be taken to mean outside of the** visible** Catholic Church. Peter Kreeft points to the that Fr. Feeney, who held to this strict interpretation found himself outside of the visible Church for holding to this heresy.

All opinions on this topic go beyond what the church has pronounced on the subject. It is still open to theological debate as to some, few or most, going to heaven or hell. To say, " Most people are going to hell… This is a biblical truth." Is taking upon yourself, the role of the Church in interpreting the Bible.

I believe in a merciful God and hold to the hope of heaven.


#12

Let’s say a person who is muslim and is never given the opportunity to know Christ. He was raised in the only faith he knew, and followed it to the best of his abiltily. Is this person damned to eternal suffering?


#13

[quote=rayne89]Let’s say a person who is muslim and is never given the opportunity to know Christ. He was raised in the only faith he knew, and followed it to the best of his abiltily. Is this person damned to eternal suffering?
[/quote]

My understanding is not necassarily. Musilms may not “know” Christ, but they do know Jesus. I don’t believe they know Jesus as The Christ. But this is beside the point.

I think the Evangelical protestant would answer your question with a ** yes**. Which is largely why, when I came back to faith a couple of years ago I rejected the Evangelican doctrine and ultimately came back to my Catholic roots.

Catholics, do not believe those who are ignorant (invincably) to the Truth of the Catholic Church are condemed to Hell. Evangelicals believe that there is one way to salvation, through belief in Jesus Christ. All others are doomed to burn in Hell for all eternity. Which, of course, would include the sweetest, most loving, charitable and faithful to thier belief; Jew, Muslim, fill in the blank, person you could imagine. I can’t reconcile this with a loving God who loves all his children. Yet somehow, the Evangelican can.


#14

[quote=pnewton]This can not be taken to mean outside of the** visible** Catholic Church. Peter Kreeft points to the that Fr. Feeney, who held to this strict interpretation found himself outside of the visible Church for holding to this heresy.

All opinions on this topic go beyond what the church has pronounced on the subject. It is still open to theological debate as to some, few or most, going to heaven or hell. To say, " Most people are going to hell… This is a biblical truth." Is taking upon yourself, the role of the Church in interpreting the Bible.

I believe in a merciful God and hold to the hope of heaven.
[/quote]

The Church IS visible. The invisible part of the Church is how the invisible grace operate from the Church and the final destination of the Church.

SATIS COGNITUM
ON THE UNITY OF THE CHURCH

ENCYCLICAL OF POPE LEO XIII

JUNE 29, 1896

  1. And, since it was necessary that His divine mission should be perpetuated to the end of time, He took to Himself Disciples, trained by himself, and made them partakers of His own authority. And, when He had invoked upon them from Heaven the Spirit of Truth, He bade them go through the whole world and faithfully preach to all nations, what He had taught and what He had commanded, so that by the profession of His doctrine, and the observance of His laws, the human race might attain to holiness on earth and neverending happiness in Heaven. In this wise, and on this principle, the Church was begotten. If we consider the chief end of His Church and the proximate efficient causes of salvation, it is undoubtedly spiritual; but in regard to those who constitute it, and to the things which lead to these spiritual gifts, it is external and necessarily visible. The Apostles received a mission to teach by visible and audible signs, and they discharged their mission only by words and acts which certainly appealed to the senses. So that their voices falling upon the ears of those who heard them begot faith in souls - “Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the words of Christ” (Rom. x., 17).

Fr. Feeney’s problem is the strict interpretation of water baptism and the denial of Blood Baptism and In Votum baptism. That was what reprimanded by Vatican.


#15

[quote=rayne89]Let’s say a person who is muslim and is never given the opportunity to know Christ. He was raised in the only faith he knew, and followed it to the best of his abiltily. Is this person damned to eternal suffering?
[/quote]

If he continue to be Moslem until the last nano second of his death he will not enter into Heavenly glory.

Because WITHOUT joining the Body of Christ NO MAN can enter into heavenly glory. It’s highly possible (IMO) that those who through no fault of their own DO NOT know Christ and WOULD HAVE become the member of Christ hath given the oppurtunity, will be given the final oppurtunity in the last second of his life.

Because, as we need to stressed out, NO ONE can enter into Heaven if he’s not joined with the Body of Christ, whcih is the Catholic Church (not Orthodox, not Protestant)


#16

The results of this poll and the subsequent posts I certainly find interesting.

I think it a fair statement to suggest that; the vast majority of people in this country, Catholics and Protestants believe that very few people will be going to Hell. Hell is reserved for the lowest (in terms of evil) segment of those on earth. I have never in my life been to a Catholic or Protestant funeral where the people who came to pay thier respects were under the belief the deceased was not going to Heaven. The words we use are “they are now at rest” or “they are now at peace”. Have you ever heard, “Gee its a shame Joe is now burning in Hell. He was such a nice guy too”?

To all of you who believe most are going to Hell I have this question to ask you. I have been to many Catholic funerals. Dozens throughout my life. Of these funerals I think it is safe to say that the majority were not devout Catholics. The latest of these funerals I attended was a friend who died of a heart attack at 50 years of age. He never attended Church. Another friend who spoke publically at the funeral Mass said of his faith, “Joe was not much for organized religion. But he treated people like he would want to be treated. God can’t ask more of us then this”.

I’m not contending he was correct at all. I am though contending that we simply do not know all of Gods intention for our outcome. i think it presumtious to say “most are going to hell”.

The priest was sitting in a chair listening to this. When the very warm and emotional talk was over, the Priest continued on with the Mass. He insinuated many times throughout the Mass that Joe was with the Lord.

Was this Priest lying to all in attendance? At the grave site, yet another Priest further insinuated that Joe was going be in Heaven.

Do priest simply lie during funeral Masses to protect the feelings of those in attendence. Is it all baloney?

We believe God knows all, we believe God knew the outcome of His divine plan/design before the plan was underway. If the majority of His creation is burning in Hell, how do we reconcile this design as being a “good” design? How do you explain this to yourself? How do you reconcile this?


#17

In A.D. 151 Justin Martyr taught that, “Christ is the first-begotten of God, and we have declared him to be the Logos of which all mankind partakes. Those, therefore, who lived according to reason [in Greek, logos] were really Christians, even though they were thought to be atheists, such as, among the Greeks, Socrates, Heraclitus, and others like them. . . . Those who lived then or live now according to reason [logos] are Christians. Such as these can be confident and unafraid” (First Apology 46).


#18

#19

No one can know whether a dead person is in Heaven if the Church hasn’t declared him/her saint.

The priest is comforting the attendance.

Do priest simply lie during funeral Masses to protect the feelings of those in attendence. Is it all baloney?

If the priest made the assertion that he knows for 100% certain that the deceased is in Heaven, then he’s incorrect.

In the Funeral Mass there’s no built in declaration that the deceased is 100% in Heaven.

We believe God knows all, we believe God knew the outcome of His divine plan/design before the plan was underway. If the majority of His creation is burning in Hell, how do we reconcile this design as being a “good” design?

The fate of all people, even Araham, Moses and even the blessed Virgin is hell. Had there not be Christ’s sacrifices every person on Earth deserved hell.

The good of God is that He OFFERS the sacrifice FREELY when He DOES NOT HAVE TO. And this offer is without any effort from man and all from God. Even man’s acceptance of this offer is helped by God. God has given men sufficient grace to receive this offer.

That is the goodness of God and the perfect design of salvation.

How do you explain this to yourself?

Like the above

How do you reconcile this?

Like the above.

Those who are so used to warm fuzzy feeling will not be able to understand the positive goodness of God.


#20

Also:
Can Non-Christians Be Saved? By Kenneth J. Howell

catholic.com/thisrock/2004/0403sbs.asp


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.