HOME  Why its a mistake to give the Catholic Church support via membership or donations

 

ETERNAL PUNISHING IS A DOCTRINE OF HATE

Most forms of Christianity including the Roman Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Churches hold that those who die estranged from God will suffer forever and ever in Hell and there is no hope of release. The Book of Mormon and the Bible and the Koran teach the same doctrine.

The Catholic Church claims to be infallible when it intends to be and speaks to the whole Church. Everlasting punishing is a dogma of the faith for it was revealed through the infallibility mechanism and was made as such as clearly as possible during the Council of Trent. Deny it and you deny what God has said through the Church. Deny it and you deny that the Church is really unable to err in matters of faith and morals. Deny it and you deny that Catholicism is the true faith. Deny it and you assert that Catholicism is just a load of human opinion and not a divinely revealed faith.

Because Hell and its everlasting nature is a defined article of the Catholic faith it is an essential and Radio Replies tells us that whoever knows it is Catholic doctrine and still denies it has renounced his Catholic faith and repudiated the teaching authority of the Church and no priest can admit such one to the sacraments until he fully accepts the doctrine (Question 926, Page 220, Radio Replies 3, Frs Rumble & Carty, Radio Replies Press, St Paul, Minnesota, 1942).

The Book of Revelation tells us that the smoke of the torment of those who commit idolatry will ascend “forever and ever” [eis aioonas aioonoon – literally, from ages to ages] (14:11). I used to think that it was just saying that the smoke would rise forever not that they would be tormented forever. The picture I had was of the smoke rising from the fire they had been destroyed in. But there would be no point in preserving the smoke if that happened for the saints cannot sin so the smoke must rise forever because the damned are tormented forever. When the verse says the smoke of the torture will rise forever and ever and immediately after that they will be tormented day and night forever it clearly means that sinners will suffer forever. Put it this way, why say the smoke of their torment will rise forever when you could say the smoke of their destruction? Given how hot the fire is we would expect them to be dead before they can even get near it as they are flung in but they are alive.

Anybody could write a book that would have more right to be considered scripture than the Book of Revelation so this book has no right to be so brutish and should be torn out of the Bible.

Jesus predicted that on judgement day all those who were not kind to others would go into “never-ending punishment [kolasin aioonion]” (Matthew 25:46 – my version). The Greek word, derived from kolasis which is translated punishment does not mean annihilation though some say it does. It appears in 1 John 4:18 which says that “fear makes you restrained [or punished]” (my version) and cannot mean annihilation here – note the present tense. Earlier in the same sentence, he spoke of “never-ending life [zoozeen aioonion]” meaning everlasting happiness in Heaven. If the punishment ends so does the life of Heaven so we ought to take the word never-ending (aioonion) literally. Annihilation is not a punishment but a kind of reward for there is nothing to dread about ceasing to exist so it is crazy to suppose that the punishment is cessation of existence. Annihilation means treating the worst sinner the same as the not-so-bads.

In the gospels, Jesus said hardly anything about what it is like to be saved after death but said plenty about Hell suggesting that it was such a big danger that it should be focused on. He was a hell-fire and brimstone preacher.

Jesus will say to the unjust, “Begone from Me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels” (Matthew 25:41). The fire puts out of existence or it torments or both. God would not keep the fire lit after it has destroyed the wicked and eradicated evil for the saved cannot sin for they are too happy to and don’t need the reminder. So when Jesus said the fire is everlasting it must be maintained for the purpose of tormenting sinners. This sentence was uttered at a most solemn moment so it is absurd to say that Jesus is speaking in symbols. Can you imagine a judge sentencing a man to death and saying that he meant he wanted the man put in jail only which he considers to be a living death? Since God can make virgins have babies without sperm he can make magic fire and so Jesus should be taken literally for he never indicated that he should be taken any other way.

Some say there is a contrast between everlasting life and everlasting punishment meaning that the latter must represent death. But then as now people who had a hard time of it were said to have no life. That could be the meaning of the contrast and it probably is for it is more natural to use the word death than punishment when you mean annihilation. Also it is not necessarily an intended contrast. If you say John could go to Heaven or Hell that does not necessarily mean that Heaven and Hell aren’t alike.

When God needs a fire though he can destroy without it we see a hint that the fire is not just for destruction but for tormenting. Some think the fire was prepared for the Devil and his angels at the end of the world. They would say that everlasting punishment because it contrasts with eternal life is everlasting punishment in the sense that the persons will be put out of existence forever. But the Devil and his angels don’t have bodies so the fire must be for tormenting them. God does not need fire especially when it comes to spirits or beings that have no bodies. The fire is for torment and the destruction of happiness but not for annihilation or the destruction of personal entities. It is not fire as we know it but a magic fire and therefore one that could torment forever. Jesus never said the fire would be made at the end of the world. When the fire is prepared for the Devil and his angels though it was known that there were plenty of sinners to go there it implies that its purpose is tormenting punishment because the meaning must be that the fire was made before the world began and the Devil and his angels for whom it was prepared were thrown in and it was made for them at the start for there were no people made yet which does not exclude God intending to throw any people who were as bad in later. But since Satan and his angels are alive according to the gospels it follows that the fire is for torturing.

Paul wrote that if Jesus has not risen from the dead then the dead are lost forever and Christians are still in their sins meaning that sincerity will not save so this implies that unless you have the right gospel there is no hope. This sentences most people, even most Christians, to eternal damnation for having the wrong beliefs.

Once when he was asked if only a few would be saved, Jesus replied that people have to strive to get into Heaven and to squeeze through the narrow door (Luke 13:23, 24). He did not say straight out that only a few can expect to be saved but when he started talking about the need for a struggle and to get in through a narrow door yes was written all over it. So all do not go to Heaven, namely, those who don’t strive. He did say then that only a few go to Heaven. When anybody asks you if your pub can hold many punters and you tell them that they need to do something hard to get in it is obvious that you are indicating that it does not. Jesus was doing the same thing here. It is laughable that some argue that 99 out of hundred would be few to Jesus who wants all to be saved – meaning that not many doesn’t mean not many here (page 288, Handbook of Christian Apologetics). But when Jesus was on such a serious subject he was hardly likely to be unclear and childish. Only a few go to Heaven so the rest must suffer forever. If he had been talking to himself saying so few will be saved we might believe the laughable interpretation of this but when he said it to others who would have taken him to mean few in the real sense that is what he meant. If sincerity could save most would be saved.

Why do Atheists consider the doctrine of Hell to be grossly evil and spiteful?

1) Because it asks me to approve if I am sent to Hell forever for my sins though I would still be more sure I existed than that God existed. God cannot then expect me to approve. Since Hell is supposed to be opposition to the love of God it follows that I have to approve of God but reject him to go there. If I shouldn’t approve then only an evil God would approve of a system like eternal damnation. The doctrine implies that goodness is hating the self and rebelling against it and trying to destroy it.

I would need to be a very holy person before I could claim the right to believe that bad people go to Hell. It is just like you cannot judge your neighbour as a whore even if she is worse than you if you occasionally sell yourself for sex. There would be an obvious element of vindictiveness in doing that.  Just imagine the level of vindictiveness and evil there would have to be in you to judge somebody as being in danger of Hell? And Christianity is all about making this judgment for if you don’t see people as in danger of Hell you will end up letting them go there. Better to upset them now and give them a chance to save themselves than to let them go to the place of everlasting torment.

The Church says we should try to save people from Hell by expressing the gospel to them. But if they deserve it why should we care? To save somebody from what they deserve or have asked for is to declare that their decision to deserve should no longer be respected and so their personhood shouldn't be respected. It is to say that deserving doesn't matter and therefore that morality which is based on the ideas of justice and deserving is nonsense. If we should save people who deserve Hell from what they deserve, then we should fight every step of the way to stop criminals being fined and or going to jail for they do less damage.
Contradictions contradictions galore in the Christian faith! The help of Christians then is sour. They give you rotten meat and marinate it in perfume to disguise the stink.

2) Because it implies that God and the saints cannot want you to be released from Hell for God keeps you there for you would leave eventually if you were there of your own free will which glorifies hatred. They don’t want you to leave then they either do not care about you or they hate you but since they are happy they must simply not care for hate is painful. But indifference is worse than hate and is the real opposite of love. Also, they have to decide to be indifferent and that is an act of easy hate so hate and indifference are connected. If you should hate the damned you should hate the living sinners as much because many of the damned are people who committed relatively harmless sins.

3) Because you need a vast pile of evidence before you can say anybody deserves to rot in Hell forever for that is such a serious punishment. The evidence would need to be better than the evidence that JF Kennedy was shot. The case for Islam and Christianity which both believe in Hell is not that strong – and non-existent from a philosophical point of view. To say that God even if he is all-good which we cannot be totally sure of has the right to damn people forever is to make nonsense of all we know of right and wrong for you need to know why he does it and prove that that his reason is plausible but no explanation is possible. If God can be good and do that then he can be good and command the murder of heretics. It is a serious slander to say that anybody could be that bad that they would choose an eternity of misery. God must do something to the damned to make sure they don’t repent. He must cut off good influences from them. All that whitewash about people going to Hell against the will of poor helpless God is nonsense and is so common and obviously ridiculous that it casts doubt on the integrity of Christian teachers.

4) Because if God needs a Hell for a purpose then that purpose has to do with us not him for he is all-powerful, in other words, we make it impossible for Hell to be done without. But in that case he can create an illusionary Hell. It would not be lying for he has no choice. He supports lies by not refuting them on earth so he can promote what is not true.

5) Catholics say that Protestants who hold that Catholics are going to Hell are bigots and being very uncharitable. Very isn't the right word. They are being totally uncharitable. If that is bigotry, then what is it to look upon a dying person and think they might or probably will go to Hell? The Catholics actually admit - albeit indirectly - that Hell is a vindictive doctrine.

6) Because Hell, and the teaching that Hell exists, is useless for it cannot deter us from sin.

Though it may scare us off doing bad things it does not stop us from having the attitude that if there were no Hell we would go ahead and do the bad actions. In other words, it fails to stop attachment and the will to commit sin. Such attachment is sinful. Christians say sin not harm is the worst of all evils. They say harm is not necessarily sin but harm is the result of sin. So Hell is useless when it fails to stop sin. Why bother refraining from harm then when you are a sinner already? If you would commit adultery if there were no Hell then you are as much of an adulterer as the one who actually has adulterous sex (Matthew 5).

If we are good people we will do good for its own sake. We won’t need belief in Hell. It will have nothing to do with making us good. It actually may make us act good but not be good. Jesus said that people who do that are the worst before God though man may like them a lot.

Hell then has nothing to do with making us genuinely good so it is clearly a vindictive doctrine. What would you think of somebody who believed that the tooth fairy will torment you forever if you don’t brush your teeth every morning? You would believe that person is indulging in vindictive wishful thinking for the doctrine is useless and the person could believe something nicer.

The apostle Paul said he spoke for Jesus and Jesus spoke in him (1 Thessalonians 2:13, 4:2/ 2 Corinthians 13:3). He declared that if it were possible he would consent to be lost, that is damned and separated and rejected by God, if it could mean Israel could be saved in his stead (Romans 9:1-5). He stated that this was the truth and that the Holy Spirit revealed it to his conscience that it was true, "It is the truth that I have tremendous anguish over my people Israel and wish I could be lost and cut off from God to save them and I say this in union with Christ. My conscience assures me that it is the truth as does the Holy Spirit." This clearly indicates that the modern Christian notion that we make our own Hell and that God doesn't punish us there is false. If we make our own Hell it would be a sin to wish that you would sin and curse him and be lost forever even to save others. God sends people to Hell of his own free will. God went to the trouble of revealing to Paul that Paul would go to Hell for Israel to indicate his approval of Paul's feelings and anguish. The Church cannot say that the wish came when Paul was overcome by weakness and so his wish that would normally be a sin couldn't be for he didn't fully consent to it.

To send someone to Hell means they are forced to stay in sin forever and sin is what God says he wants rid of. A God who hates sin should hate it for what it does to us but and try to save us all from it and leave the possibility of salvation open to us during the entire eternal span of our existence. We conclude that the doctrine is malicious.

It is terrible to suggest that anyone who dies even might go there. What kind of compassion is that for them or the bereaved?

The teaching of Hell makes sin very serious indeed. It implies that you would turn your back on all the people you love and God and on love itself for all eternity. That is a very harmful and heavy burden of guilt the doctrine seeks to impose. Severe psychological damage could be done to children and the impressionable. Christianity should be discouraged by the state not by persecution but by making sure everybody has access to reasonings that answer and refute the faith.

If you have a baby and abandon it and it dies as a result of exposure and goes to Heaven it could be better off. It would be worse off if you let it live and it went to Hell. In principle, not in practice, the Church has to agree that this logic is correct. Christianity is evil and twisted and if it lets you spare the child it does it without real love. The principle makes sure of that. The love it has is for its faith not the child.

7) Because the modern attempts to justify Hell hold that the souls there are not being tormented as much as possible but according to their sins. But they would have to be tormented to the extreme for all sin is equal if there is a God. To offend a God who deserves infinite kindness from you is an infinite insult. It is not the tormenting in Hell that is most terrible but the forever aspect and so why would a God who damns forever not torment you to the extreme forever? If he gets scrupulous then he should close Hell down altogether.

8) Because the doctrines of venial sin and salvation from sin enforce the hatred that emerges from the Hell doctrine. To say you have venial sin for which you don’t deserve to go to Hell is the height of self-righteousness because you intended to offer God an infinite insult knowing how much he hates sin and then you say other people deserve Hell for doing much the same thing and that they should be there if God wills. The if God wills clause implies that if God can damn them without damaging his plan he should damn them. If you believe that Jesus has saved you so that you will get away with your sins and other people will pay for theirs for not being saved then it is your reasoning and your feelings that tell you that. You are still being arrogant for it is not the promise of God that you are depending on as you would like to boast but your own thinking and feeling – your self-made perception. Since God says one error in a prophets teaching is enough to prove he was from Satan (Deuteronomy 18) it follows that to have real faith in Jesus you have to have a photographic memory and a complete knowledge of theology, Christian history and philosophy. So nearly all Christians can’t know if they are really saved and they are just hoping they are and that those who disagree with them will rot in Hell forever. There is no philosophical evidence in favour of the Christian faith so its wishful thinking at its cruellest and when a person chooses to hope that the damned will suffer eternally as well as that the just will have eternal life instead of hoping that everybody will be saved one day it gives a real insight into the dark nature of that person.

9) Because it is blasphemous to say that God would send anybody to Hell forever without having evidence that he does. And even if it is to please the likes of Jesus Christ it is still blasphemy. The less evidence one has, the worse the blasphemy. And the Church claims to have strong evidence and still it expects the people to do with very little. It’s an evil faith that does such a thing!

It is insulting and slanderous to say that a man murdered his baby for a good reason without evidence. If God comes first then you need absolutely perfect evidence and proof that God sends people to Hell for he is so important. You need more evidence for him doing this than you would for the guilt of the man.

10) Because when evil is just mistaking what is not good for good how can anybody possibly commit a sin that deserves Hell? Hell has no good in it at all and we are expected to believe that a person could be so evil that they would choose it. The Church explains that it is indeed the ultimate in insanity to choose Hell but the damned choose to be insane. But then if you are insane you need treatment not punishment and certainly not everlasting punishing from which there is no escape.

11) Because the Atheist system shows that all evildoing is caused by fear. Hell is therefore an evil doctrine for it incites fear for yourself and fear for others going there. The Hell doctrine is designed to corrupt and suck people into the pits of Hell and to say Hell exists amounts to saying, “I hate your guts!”

12) Because to say that a person can go to Hell and it is their own free choice to do it and be away from God forever is to say that anybody can be forced to sin.

It contradicts the Hell believers own assertion that the person who says they were forced to steal from their mother is telling the truth if they did it under the threat of serious bodily harm or death if they did not comply. It contradicts their assertion that the person had no choice.

If you can choose Hell the worst thing imaginable, you can choose anything. If you can choose that then you should not be believed if you say you had to say what wasn’t true to save your life and you had no choice.
Back to Hell being a choice. If a man says, “Your money or your life”, and you choose to keep the money and forgo your life that does not give the man the right to kill you or hurt you. It does in the case of Jesus’ evil God so that is discrimination.

You cannot choose Hell when it is so bad. It is something that is impossible for anyone to choose. If you do, then you must have been miraculously forced to choose it. In that case, it was God’s fault not yours.
Nobody really goes to Hell for their sins though the Church says they do. They go to Hell over something they couldn’t control, their death. They go because they died in sin not because they sinned. It is not sin that the evil doctrine of Hell makes you fear but death. What greater callousness could there be than to approve when a mortal sinner goes to Hell just for dying while you get rid of your sins and go to Heaven?
What greater slander could there be than to say a person is capable of choosing everlasting rejection of love and others? Human nature is not that bad. Nobody wants to go to Hell. Its slander when it cannot be proven.
The Church says that whoever rejects God or his Church is in fact rejecting a caricature for they are so wonderful and attractive. It follows then that the damned don't make a choice against God at all but against a caricature of him. Whatever a Christian can say, they cannot say that Hell exists because God respects free will and the freedom of a person to reject him. Christians don't believe that Hell is a doctrine that respects free will at all for they are the ones saying that God is never rejected but only a mockery of him is. They use an excuse to justify Hell that they don't believe in - they are a lot more vindictive than they pretend.

13) Because love the sinner and hate the sin is rubbish for if you hate the sin you must of necessity hate the sinner for the sinner is the cause of the sin. Sin is not something you do. Sin is something that reveals YOU. It cannot be distinct from you. You cannot say that you love black people if you think black skin is evil or makes them bad or untrustworthy. The doctrine of eternal punishment makes this hypocrisy lose all control and drives it to its extreme. No greater hate can one have than to approve of a sinner being abandoned in Hell forever.
Believers say that when you choose Hell by your sin, you are saying you are your sin. That is why you reject God totally which is Hell (Ecumenical Jihad (page 45). In other words, when you get honest and admit that to judge the sin is to judge the sinner you are guaranteed damnation for being honest so this realisation must be the greatest sin of all.

14) Because we are all capable of hate and if you don’t hate anybody that is leading others into Hell by sin then you don’t really believe in Hell or care much about the victims. You are more abnormal and depraved than a psychopathic murderer if you don’t care. What makes it even more abnormal is that the Church tells us we are biased towards doing evil. We like evil better so we should be more prone to hating those who draw others into Hell than not. Hate is not a sin if you cannot help it and how could you love anybody that damns souls? Eternal punishing, a beloved dogma of Catholicism, Protestantism and Islam is a doctrine that incites hatred. It proves just how evil Jesus who preached it was. How could you even smile if people are being damned? It would be sick to be happy. The happiness of believers in Hell shows that they are very damaged people.

15) Because Hell implies that retribution is the main component of punishment which is vengeful for there are more important things to consider. Punishment is carried out because you deserve it, because it says society does not approve of your crime, because it deters others and because it is hoped that it will make you a better person. With Hell, all that matters is the retribution. But it is certain that it is better to jail a thief for say one year for all the other reasons but not retribution. There is no need to bring retribution into the equation so its introduction means that the penalty is motivated by revenge and the more importance granted to retribution the more vengeful the penalty is. Hell contradicts the Christian ban on revenge. When you accuse them of being vengeful they respond by saying that revenge is wrong and that they are not. But they have no right to condemn the vengeful as long as they support the Hell doctrine. Indeed their condemning them would itself be vindictive and vengeful under those circumstances. The Hell doctrine underlines the hypocrisy of Christianity and its founders. There is no use in the Church blaming the scriptures for the doctrine for it could eliminate the books that teach it from the canon. Just because they want to use the list of books they have people have to suffer and God has to get a bad name. Sick and sad.

16) Christians today try to avoid the conclusion that Hell is a doctrine of hate by saying that Hell happens only because God respects our free will to abandon him and be abandoned for all eternity. This is a trendy notion and rather untraditional. It contradicts the parable of the prodigal son told by Jesus in which a son finally rejects his father but later changes his mind and is welcomed back. Just because a decision is final doesn't mean it will stay final. It doesn't explain why it is only those who die rejecting God that don't reverse their rejection. A person could reject God finally during life and then at death be softening to him and still go to Hell forever and the Church says it is their free will! How silly! It is a strange kind of free will that allows one to reject God forever many times on earth and then change and go back to him when those who happen to die during a phase in which they want nothing to do with God ever again can't change. Clearly it is not free will that causes Hell but death. Christians are just twisting things about to make their religion look good and kind. It is like an abusive husband beating his wife and saying that the passion of love he feels for her took over his mind and made him do what he didn't really want to do. It is dressing evil up as good.

People who die in sin have to be slandered by Christians. The Christians need to say they ALL turn into stubborn reprobates. Even if some might all wouldn't. It is ridiculous to believe that death would do that to all those people. Few if any could be so bad that they would be beyond hope of changing for the better. You need total proof before you can accuse people of having the power to be that bad. The Christian claim that those who are in Hell have chosen to be there is a lie. They are there because they died in sin according to Christian theology. It is death that put them there not sin because the living person who chooses to go to Hell does not disappear from earth and go there.

All free will decisions are final in the sense that once they are made they are made. When you choose to create evil, the evil you make will have happened no matter what you do in the future to fix it so it is permanent and final in that sense. Free will is about being able to make final decisions and change them later. Christians say God gives us free will so that we might be good people of our own volition. When we accept this gift and we accept it by using it, we make a contract to always use it for good. But we frequently break this contract. The Christians lie that free will needs to make it possible that you will never change.

If we make a final decision against God, we need the power to change and turn to him to be still there. It is because you have the power to change but don't that you can be called stubborn. Without it you would be a puppet not a reprobate.

God should not let a person go to Hell forever just because they have chosen it. That would not be against their free will. They have still decided to abandon God forever and that doesn't change. Whether or not they get what they have decided for, their will is still the same. Christians say the marriage bond ends with death. Mormons say that a man and woman who make the final decision to be wed for time and eternity contract a marriage that will last beyond death and forever. God doesn't go along with the Mormon if Christianity is true. So why should he prefer to go along with the will of somebody who wants to be in agony and loneliness forever.

Most Christians object to the notion that Hell is the place where people freely stay and become evil and create this madhouse for it implies that Hell is not punishment for sin. They point out that if the damned are not getting punished by God but are left to their own evil devices then Hell could be far worse than it would be if it was a place where God in fairness punished the damned and restrained them from being overly cruel to one another.

Many of those who die without believing in or obeying Christ are caring people. Christians are asking us to believe they are reprobates who want to shun God and all that is loved by God and all other people by going to Hell if they die. The solution that free will makes Hell is no solution at all and only serves to make the Hell doctrine more vindictive. Even the most liberal of theologians, even those who say we must believe in the possibility of Hell but not necessarily that there is anybody in it, are being vindictive. They are still saying the Hell treatment would be right.

17) Hell is hard to believe. Some people say it is easy. Others say it is no harder to believe than the other doctrines the Church has such as Jesus being God, rising from the dead and giving salvation through baptism and the pope being infallible and so on. It is hard to warm to the other doctrines if they make it easier for people to believe in Hell when they believe in them. It is as if they encourage or smooth the way to dangerous or disturbing beliefs. Besides, to say those other doctrines make it just as easy to add the doctrine of Hell to your belief system is to deny how disturbing the doctrine is. The doctrine only appeals to malicious people or those who have been desensitised to such an evil claim as that a sinner should suffer forever in Hell if he doesn't repent. Those who say it is easy or not too difficult are certainly betraying their own smug feeling that they won't go there but that other people will. Their vindictiveness simmers below the surface.

What is easy about believing people die and rise again go there to burn and suffer forever for a sin or two? The belief demands quite a few miracles such as bodies rising from the dead, becoming immortal and miracle beings to inflict everlasting torment. If it is easy to believe in it, then the reason surely has to be because the victims of Hell are thought to deserve it more than anything else. That would suggest that the believer is not a good piece of work. If it is easy to believe people would deserve hell then they deserve it even if there is no God. If it is hard to believe in Hell then that is telling us that our natural instincts revolt against the idea. By silencing them we silence our conscience and become evil. We are doing what the child abuser does. Hell is a vicious vindictive doctrine. Commonsense says that Jesus rising from the dead is very unlikely for everybody stays dead and that even if he rose we cannot be expected to believe he did. Believers answer that we don’t know what is likely. They don’t believe that argument themselves for life cannot go on if we don’t make assumptions about what is likely. They are just being bigots. So the doctrine of Hell is very unlikely for all the miracles it involves. They have to be bigots to defend it so it is a doctrine of hate.

If a Christian says that it is good to believe in Hell, they may also admit that the doctrine is horrible and they recoil from it. If they are okay people then they will say they try to believe in the doctrine but cannot. That would be acceptable for a Christian for it is only wilful doubt or denial that is a sin. Clearly those who profess the doctrine are showing that they have an evil side.

CHRISTIANS REPLY:

It is not vindictive for us to warn people that the everlasting torment of Hell is the fate of all who die in serious unrepented sin. We are trying to keep people out of Hell. 

The reply to this is that they only believe in in or guess it exists. When they do that without proof part of them wants it to exist and people to go there. There is also the matter of how the Church bases its God and spirituality on hypocrisy that pretends that hating sin is not hating the sinner at least in so far as the sin is hated. Hypocrites teaching Hell for breaking their rules shows how vindictive they are. There is also the matter that modern psychiatry and psychology verify that no person can be fully evil - they are a mixture of badness and some mental or emotional disorder. Nobody can be evil in their hearts to the extent that they deserve great suffering even for the worst of crimes. No person can choose Hell and nobody should be accused of being able to choose it. We know that ourselves - all of us. By teaching that there is sin bad enough to put us in Hell the Christians are in effect trying to make us deserve it. If we all believed no sin was that bad we would be unable to choose Hell. They might say that nobody is allowed to like the thought of Hell even for his enemies or God's. If the person chooses Hell that amounts to not liking the person having free will! It amounts to not liking the person for being a person Catholicism teaches that a proper person has free will. Hating the person vindictively at least honours them by recognising them as a person!

Everlasting punishing is a doctrine of hate. If you can excuse it you can excuse anything for people suffering and sinning forever without any hope because of God is worse than the idea of God becoming a paedophile incarnate. We would call a person who adored a God who becomes a paedophile as evil so why should Christians get off?

ECUMENICAL JIHAD, Peter Kreeft, Ignatius Press, San Francisco, 1996