Is there anyone in Hell?


#1

Last night at RCIA one of the TEAM leaders stated that she didn’t believe anyone was in Hell because God is merciful. I stated that she sure is an optimist. :smiley: What is the teaching of the Church on this? Thanks


#2

God is abundantly merciful - but he doesn’t bluff. Hell is as real as Heaven. I saw Fr. Corapi last month in my home town and he stressed that “souls are falling to hell like snowflakes”.

See, that’s where the devil is winning souls everyday. With this lukewarm fuzzy feeling that there really isn’t a hell. I am convinced this is one of the biggest misconceptions that will lead people down the path of spiritual destruction.


#3

Well, I don’t think there’s any question there are souls in hell. But you cannot say for sure whether or not a specific person is there…because of God’s mercy.

When Jesus says in Mark 14:21, “For the Son of Man indeed goes, as it is written of him, but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed. It would be better for that man if he had never been born,” we know he can’t be talking about only Judas.

We also hear in 1 Cor. 11:27 “Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord unworthily will have to answer for the body and blood of the Lord.” In such a way, we acquire the blood guilt for our Lord.

Now, all we have to do is ask God’s forgiveness. But if person has built up his or her pride so that they choose not to ask forgiveness, they will not be saved.

Likewise, to despair of God’s Mercy prevents him from giving it to us. Matthew 12:32: “And whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven; but whoever speaks against the holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come.”

If Jesus said something like that, and there were no possibility of anyone going to hell, what would be the point of Him saying it?


#4

[quote=John W.]Last night at RCIA one of the TEAM leaders stated that she didn’t believe anyone was in Hell because God is merciful. I stated that she sure is an optimist. :smiley: What is the teaching of the Church on this? Thanks
[/quote]

In brief, the Church’s teaching is, “Mind your own business” :slight_smile:

There is no way to know the answer to your question as put - it is a question that is not going to be answered.

God knows, we don’t, and revelations are no evidence, because it is impossible completely to separate the seer’s POV, from what the seer has been shown; which is one of the reasons nothing is built by theologians on private revelations.

Some things are God’s business, not ours, which is why it is wrong to seek to know more than we can. To seek to know what God has reserved to Himself, is to commit the sin of curiosity, and to forget that what is revealed is enough for our salvation even if not for our desire to know.

Besides, if we don’t take care, we shall go to Hell - but it would be no comfort then to know that at least one person is there :slight_smile:

If we sin, we shall be there - so it is of no concern to us who else might be.

Curiosity about who, if anyone, is in Hell, is a distraction from the fact of one’s own fitness for Hell. It promotes readiness to condemn others, blindness to our own faults, curiosity, and other vices. What matters here and now, is that one knows one deserves damnation, and that one does not need to be damned - “do not give us what we truly deserve…”; we pray thus, because God has not given us our deserts: if God were just, we would certainly be destroyed. But, “mercy triumphs over judgement”. ##


#5

And, there’s also the message Our Lady delivered at Fatima, that God is being grievously offended and countless souls are falling into hell because of their sins.

For these RCIA leaders to not warn converts about the real possibility of Hell is a horrendous sin in and of itself.


#6

[quote=enanneman]And, there’s also the message Our Lady delivered at Fatima, that God is being grievously offended and countless souls are falling into hell because of their sins.

For these RCIA leaders to not warn converts about the real possibility of Hell is a hurrendous sin in and of itself.
[/quote]

Agreed. This is what happens when faithful Catholics don’t step up to the plate to teach the faith: Those who prefer their own beliefs over the Magisterium do!


#7

No one has gone there in the last 40 or so years. We have come a long way! :banghead:


#8

[quote=jrabs]God is abundantly merciful - but he doesn’t bluff. Hell is as real as Heaven. I saw Fr. Corapi last month in my home town and he stressed that “souls are falling to hell like snowflakes”.

See, that’s where the devil is winning souls everyday. With this lukewarm fuzzy feeling that there really isn’t a hell. I am convinced this is one of the biggest misconceptions that will lead people down the path of spiritual destruction.
[/quote]

I agree…and, God is Just!


#9

If there is no Hell then why have religion at all? Why be Christian? Why not sin now and ask for forgiveness in heaven? I’d rather rob banks and still what I need then work 5 days a week and get up at 5:50 am in the *%$#@ morning! Boy, what a life, sin in the morning sin in the afternoon sin in the evening then followed on by an all night sin feast! Man that is the life for me! All I need to do is stop sinning when I meet God? I have ‘faith alone’ in Jesus so I can sin all I want!:whacky:

OK, I’m out-a-hear…


#10

[quote=John W.]Last night at RCIA one of the TEAM leaders stated that she didn’t believe anyone was in Hell because God is merciful. I stated that she sure is an optimist. :smiley: What is the teaching of the Church on this? Thanks
[/quote]

She will change her mind when she gets therehttp://forums.catholic.com/images/icons/icon10.gifhttp://forums.catholic.com/images/icons/icon10.gif


#11

[quote=Malachi4U] … I have ‘faith alone’ in Jesus so I can sin all I want!:whacky: …
[/quote]

Yup, we need to be cautious that we don’t fall into Protestant teaching, denying what Christ’s church tells us is true.

I have boundless Hope that God’s desire that all shall come to Him might in the end result in an empty Hell, but I accept with fear and trembling that we are in no way guaranteed Salvation for God is both Infinite Mercy and Infinite Justice which is His Infinite Love realized.

The Church teaches that there is a Hell.

The Bible tells us that the Road to Hell is easy and the path to Heaven Narrow and difficult. I’m an optimist and willing to try the more challenging route. Perhaps the effort I put in will in some way bring Glory and Honor to God. I can try.

And perhaps, in some Mystical way, my desire to Love and Serve God can translate into helping the World to be a Better Place. I pray that we each find the role God has defined for us and play it to the best of our ability, for God gives us strength where we have none, when we are doing His Will.

And, I have heard that there are many different levels in Heaven. Is it remotely possible for me to learn sufficient Humility to merit a place of honor with Our Lord? What a conundrum, to strive for Heavenly Honor, knowing that Pride will seperate us from God at an incredible rate.

God Bless,

CARose


#12

[quote=Gottle of Geer]## In brief, the Church’s teaching is, “Mind your own business” :slight_smile:

Some things are God’s business, not ours, which is why it is wrong to seek to know more than we can. To seek to know what God has reserved to Himself, is to commit the sin of curiosity, and to forget that what is revealed is enough for our salvation even if not for our desire to know.

Besides, if we don’t take care, we shall go to Hell - but it would be no comfort then to know that at least one person is there :slight_smile:

If we sin, we shall be there - so it is of no concern to us who else might be.

Curiosity about who, if anyone, is in Hell, is a distraction from the fact of one’s own fitness for Hell. It promotes readiness to condemn others, blindness to our own faults, curiosity, and other vices. What matters here and now, is that one knows one deserves damnation, and that one does not need to be damned - “do not give us what we truly deserve…”; we pray thus, because God has not given us our deserts: if God were just, we would certainly be destroyed. But, “mercy triumphs over judgement”. ##
[/quote]

In brief, the Church’s teaching is not to mind our own business, but to spread the Gospel to all.

The Gospel tells us there will be division, and separation of the sheep and goats… wheat and shaff…etc.

This is NOT Purgatory.

Besides, the question is “Is there any one in hell” and not “who do you think is there?”

Satan would not work so hard if he thought we could not increase the number of damned souls.

WAKE UP - There is a hell, and it is occupied.


#13

[quote=Malachi4U] I’d rather rob banks and still what I need then work 5 days a week and get up at 5:50 am in the *%$#@ morning! Boy, what a life, sin in the morning sin in the afternoon sin in the evening then followed on by an all night sin feast!
QUOTE]

Oh, YEAH! And forget this difficult chastity stuff! In fact, now I’m gonna rip on my really irritating neighbor and tell him what I really think about him!

Yessssss. I’m feelin good now!
[/quote]


#14

hell is a temporary place, to be cast into the lake of fire at the last judgment, according to the book of revelation.

hell, by THAT definition, is certainly populated. Jesus’s stories and teachings were pretty clear on that. whether or not anyone will be cast into the lake of fire is debatable. gregory of nyssa, among other great catholic teachers, believed that it might be possible that everyone will be saved, eventually.

i hope this is true, myself.

however, even if this is true, this doesn’t mean we can do what malachi4u implies. sin is bad for us. it hurts us, causes us to be less like Him, less holy. we don’t ‘have religion’ or ‘avoid sin’ so that we can ‘make it into heaven’. we follow Christ on the road to holiness because that’s the best plan for life that there is. He comes to bring us life, and life more abundant. the thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy. every action we take, every thought we have, either responds to God’s offer of eternal, abundant life, or it allows itself to be killed, stolen from, and destroyed.

so yes, there is a hell. Jesus was very clear about that. will anyone end up in eternal punishment, in the lake of fire? we don’t know. but holiness, a relationship with Jesus, knowing Him through the channels He has provided (the sacraments), are the way by which He saves us from it, whether ‘us’ means everyone in the world who ever lived, or only a select few (relatively speaking. we know there will be ALOT of people in heaven - revelation also talks about there being a multitude of people in heaven so great that he couldn’t count it - sands on the seashore, i think was the analogy).

it won’t be by overlooking sin in anyone’s case - it will be due to our being saved from our sins by His redemptive work.

i hope, and pray, that we all make it.


#15

[quote=John W.]Last night at RCIA one of the TEAM leaders stated that she didn’t believe anyone was in Hell because God is merciful. I stated that she sure is an optimist. :smiley: What is the teaching of the Church on this? Thanks
[/quote]

Part of the problem is RCIA itself. There is absolutely no oversight of this program from anywhere. This leaves the uninfoirmed, ignorant or those with an agenda free to wreak havoc on unsuspecting catechumans.

I attended the RCIA class in my parish Wednesday night. What a joke.

Someone from the Vatican should put out a CCC-based MANDATORY curriculum for RCIA, and each diocese should have a trained compliance officer.

I volunteer. :smiley:


#16

with the confusion caused, i guess they put the ‘human’ back into ‘catechuman’, eh?


#17

From the Catechism:

**1057 **Hell’s principal punishment consists of eternal separation from God in whom alone man can have the life and happiness for which he was created and for which he longs.

So I’m wondering, if Hell is “eternal,” how can there be any room left to believe that everyone will eventually be saved?

I would say, yes, there are people in hell. We don’t know who or how many. I hope it’s very few, but no one can say for sure.


#18

[quote=patricius]From the Catechism:

So I’m wondering, if Hell is “eternal,” how can there be any room left to believe that everyone will eventually be saved?
I
[/quote]

Isn’t the decision to enter hell irreversible? The devil and his minions cannot leave hell because their decision if final…or so I thought. Maybe I’m wrong.


#19

There’s been a lot of indignation, but no genuine evidence from Scripture or Tradition that there are people in hell. The possibility of damnation is dogma. But I don’t think it’s dogma that anyone is in fact damned.

Malachi, it’s statements like yours that make some Protestants wonder if Catholics are “really Christians.” Your views are certainly not Christian on this point–but then there are many respects in which I too fail to be a Christian. But as your brother in Christ I warn you solemnly that if you only serve God out of the fear of hell then you are not too far from hell. If you only refrain from sin because of the consequences, and would sin freely if you could do so without punishment, then it’s hard for me to see how you can be in a state of grace. To have the love of God in one’s heart means that one desires God, not simply escape from punishment. I pray that some day you will learn to love God, even just a little (which is all I can claim for myself), and will not simply fear punishment. Or, more charitably, I hope that you spoke without thinking and did not really say what you meant.

In Christ,

Edwin


#20

[quote=jrabs]Isn’t the decision to enter hell irreversible? The devil and his minions cannot leave hell because their decision if final…or so I thought. Maybe I’m wrong.
[/quote]

You are right. The trial is over when you die. You had your opportunity to choose heaven or hell while living. Your life is the decision time.


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