Hell is just so uncool.
So a Rabbi, an Atheist, and a liberal theologian walk in to a discussion on hell...
No, this is not the beginning of a really bad joke. Umm. Actually. It is the beginning of a really bad joke. Only that joke is the panel discussion put together by WaPo/Newsweek 'On Faith' site.
Ken Shepherd at Newsbusters reports on some of the really silly and anti-christian responses elicited by the this damn panel. You should check out his whole post, but I want to quote a response or two.
First comes this response from liberal theologian Susan Brooks Thistlewaite. Dude, I am not kidding. This is her name, I am not making it up. If your name is Susan Brooks Thistlewaite you have limited career options. You can either be a liberal theologian or the stuffy girlfriend in the remake of Arthur. I am not sure she made the right career choice. Leaving that aside, Susie fears that belief in hell will prevent battered women from going all Farrah and burning their rotten husbands in bed.
"Damning people to hell for their religious beliefs, their sexuality, their reproductive choices and even their political views has enormously negative consequences for human life right now," liberal theologian Susan Brooks Thistlewaite insisted.Dunno 'bout you, but I wouldn't want to date Susie. Susie has baggage.
"When I have done Bible studies with battered women, as I have done for years, many of the most religiously conservative are very nervous about asking for help with abuse because they fear they will go to hell for not being “subject” to their husbands. Often they have put up with the physical and psychological abuse for years, fearing not only the judgment of their husbands, but of God," the Chicago Theological Seminary professor added.
But Susie has nothing on the resident militant atheist on the faith panel, Herb Silverman. I never really understood why they insist on asking somebody who's entire raison d'etre is not believing what he believes about this or that. Its like asking a flat-earther about circumnavigation, what's the point?
Anywho. Herb takes the cake. Not only does Herb dismiss hell, he manages to bash Catholics and work Hilter into it. All in one measly little sentence.
It is difficult, though, to believe a claim that a loving and all-powerful god would condemn Mahatma Gandhi to an eternity of torture while the Catholic Adolph Hitler has an eternity of bliss as he looks down at Jews suffering in hell.That's some talented atheatrics. Hell, he should thank God for all that talent.