Two Future Destinations

Last week, I was flipping through the book America's God and Country by William J. Federer (love that guy!) when I came across this amusing story:

"Peter Cartwright, the famous Methodist circuit-riding preacher was invited by Andrew Jackson to be a guest in his home for Sunday lunch. Another guest, a young lawyer from Nashville, began attempting to draw Cartwright into an argument.
He asked: 'Mr. Cartwright, do you believe there is any such place as hell, a place of torment?'
Cartwright replied, 'Yes I do.'
Laughing, the young lawyer responded, 'Well, I thank God I have too much sense to believe in such a thing!' Andrew Jackson was unable to hold his composure longer, and sternly addressed the lawyer, 'Well, sir, I thank God that there is such a place of torment as hell!'
The astonished young lawyer responded, 'Why, General Jackson, what do you want with such a place as hell?'
Jackson confronted him saying, 'To put such damned rascals as you are in, that oppose and vilify the Christian religion!'
And the young man, embarrassed, left the room."

Now, before you go writing me any ugly letters, let me state that, as a Christian, I believe what the Bible states about Heaven, but I also believe that there is a hell. People say all the time, "Why would a loving God send people to hell?" Well, I don't believe the philosophy that good people go to Heaven and bad people go to hell; it is possible to be a "good" person and not obey God. Rather, those who obey God have Heaven as their future home for eternity, where they will be with God forever; and those who disobey God have hell as their eternal punishment. I heard it put this way: people don't go to hell for what the things that they didn't know; they go to hell for the bad things that they DID know and didn't change. The Bible states it very clearly, "Your iniquities have separated you from your God," but that passage also states that the Lord is just waiting with a loving hand to save you when you call upon Him.

Blaise Pascal, the famous scientist, had something to say on this subject: "How can anyone lose who chooses to become a Christian? If, when he dies, there turns out to be no God and his faith was in vain, he has lost nothing -- in fact, he has been happier in life than his nonbelieving friends. If, however, there is a God and a heaven and hell, then he has gained heaven and his skeptical friends will have lost everything in hell!"

Romans 10:12-13 "For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him. For "whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved."


  1. Awesome post! Great story and points. Nice to see you back. :)

  2. Good post about one of the biggest stumbling blocks to faith in Jesus. A corollary to it is the famous, "What about all the people in [insert geographical area, usually Africa, here] who have never even heard of Christ?"

    I always like to say that we are responsible for the light we have been given. The people in [wherever] will be responsible for the truth that God has made available to them.

    Then I point out that the question is really irrelevant when it comes to the person asking it. Anyone asking the question *has* heard about Jesus, and will therefore be responsible for how he or she responds to the person of Jesus and His resurrection.



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