When I have preached on or taught about the Doctrine of Eternal Hell, one objection I have heard often is this: “How can God send someone to Hell for all eternity for something as small as lying, stealing or lusting? Isn’t that a little harsh? That doesn’t sound like something a loving God would do.” That’s not an EXACT quote, but that’s essentially how the objection goes.
In essence, the people who make these kind of objections are saying that sending someone to an eternity in Hell would be unjust of God to do. BUT, what standard of “justice” are they using to say such a thing? Whatever standard of “justice” we have must be derived from God’s Holy Word. Any other standard of “justice” is simply arbitrary. If our definition of “justice” doesn’t line up with God’s Word we are guilty of idolatry – making up a God who is “just” according to our own arbitrary definition of what “justice” is.
One objection Calvinists often pose to non-Calvinists regarding salvation is the involvement of free will in sinners being converted/made right with God. Calvinists would have you believe that the free will of man has absolutely nothing to do with salvation and that if it did, that the man would automatically be prideful or that salvation would automatically be “works salvation,” instead of “salvation by grace.”
In meditating upon this through the years, I have come up with a parable/analogy to show how silly these objections are. Man choosing to be saved does not mean that he is being prideful, nor does it mean that his salvation is now a “works salvation.” In my opinion, these silly objections simply consist in Calvinists engaging in the redefining of Biblical words. They define the terms in light of their theological system, instead of allowing the true definitions of Biblical words to define their theological system.
BOASTFUL BEACH PARABLE/ANALOGY
Two men were at Boastful Beach one day. They loved the beach, because it fulfilled the “lust of their eyes” as they looked at all the bikini clad women. They were enjoying their day basking in the heat of the sun and getting a tan in order to fuel their own “pride of life.” They both knew that in order to get a “hot girl,” they had to have a tan. One of them began to get a little too warm, so he decided to take a swim in the Sea of Sin.