Do we prevent somebody being hurt by superstition or faith by rejecting and challenging those things? 

Is it mistaken to support organised religion in membership or donations?

If people do good because they are human, not because God prompts them then is it right to risk giving God any credit when they alone own their good?

 


Everlasting Punishment in Hell - Christianity even tries to make out its an honour!

The Christian Church teaches that if you die without having a relationship with God, you will pay for your sins for all eternity in the punishment of Hell. Today, the Church says that those who are in Hell might not want to be there but they choose to be.
 
St Augustine gave an interesting reason for teaching that Satan and all who go to Hell do not repent (page 48, Witchcraft, Sorcery and Magic). He said that it is because they sin despite their great superiority of being. Their dignity is based on their ability to be holy - dedicated to God - beyond belief. Dignity because of virtue is what he has in mind. Dignity just for the sake of dignity can't be relevant. It wouldn't even be a honour. God only chooses people to reign in Heaven based on what they deserve. So the thought in Augustine's mind is that they turned their back on their holiness and had no excuse at all for it. Their sin is so inexcusable that they can't repent.
 
Against this nonsense, you can imagine a near perfect person committing some grave evil and repenting it. The goodness or perhaps holiness the person had before he sinned should attract him back if goodness or holiness is supposed to be as fantastic as Augustine would think. The better you are before you commit a grave evil, the more likely you are to renounce that evil and be even more dedicated in goodness than a good person who never committed that evil. Augustine was stupidly saying that the holier you are before you sin the harder it will be to repent the sin. He was insulting and discouraging holiness and goodness in the name of defending his evil gospel that taught that unrepentant sinners deserve the unending despair of Hell and will face this fate when they die. That was dedication to lofty ideals!
 
If you are so good, then if you do what is really bad you can repent it fast. It would seem that you know exactly what you are doing for you have been so good and are turning your back on it. Nobody can say that there was a certain amount of ignorance there. There is no mistake made in it. It is just badness. So if you go to Hell, it is not because you won't repent. It must be pure vindictive justice by God.
 
What if a person who was far from perfect does something exceptionally bad? It might be thought that as he does not experience the beauty of goodness in its fullness he does not fully see what he is throwing away. It would be part evil and part mistake. God sending her to Hell would be far more vindictive than sending a person who tastes goodness fully and then turns away from it.
 
If they do not go to Hell, then it follows that only really good people who sin seriously go to Hell. One must ask what relevance nonsense like that has if you want people deterred from grave evil by religion.
 
Jesus said there was a Hell and Augustine is just like the Christian Churches who want to agree with Jesus despite the harm agreeing with him does.
 
Augustine's thinking today is behind the bizarre Christian preaching that people go to Hell BECAUSE God loves them not because he does not. The Churches just assert this and never develop it or give it any depth. It is purely spin. And how can anybody take it seriously.