William Lane Craig vs. Chris Date (Sort Of): WLC Botches the Atonement in a Question of the Week

Here at Rethinking Hell, we’ve been interacting with relevant comments by Christian philosopher William Lane Craig, and trying to enter into dialogue with him, since nearly the beginning of the ministry. In our very first episode of Rethinking Hell Live in 2019, I critique statements made by Craig in several clips. One of our oldest videos on YouTube is Glenn Peoples’s 2013 review of a clip I filmed at an Apologetics Canada conference, in which Craig mangles 2 Thessalonians 1:9. Joey Dear, in a 2020 blog article, debunks the way Craig often leverages the distinction between the Greek words bios and zōē (as I do below). As we’re both prolific debaters, I dream of debating Craig on the nature and duration of hell. I’ve personally reached out to him on several occasions—a half dozen times or so in 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019—inviting him to be interviewed, speak at conferences, and engage with us in other ways. Sadly, Craig declined each such invitation and has thus far chosen not to interact with any of our work, let alone me, specifically.

Until now.

Well, sort of. Continue reading “William Lane Craig vs. Chris Date (Sort Of): WLC Botches the Atonement in a Question of the Week”

Episode 126: Rethinking Hell Live 01, Responding to William Lane Craig

A special episode of the podcast introducing listeners to the new weekly YouTube live stream, Rethinking Hell Live, streaming Mondays at 6pm Pacific/9pm Eastern. In this audio version of the inaugural episode, Chris Date responds to clips on YouTube featuring Dr. William Lane Craig.

Continue reading “Episode 126: Rethinking Hell Live 01, Responding to William Lane Craig”

Ningún Penitente en el Infierno: Una Respuesta [Reformada] a D. A. Carson

On June 22, 2012, well-known and respected theologian and scholar D. A. Carson told his audience that, as far as he could see, in Scripture “there is no hint anywhere that people in hell genuinely repent.”1Carson, D. A. “Home at last: The spectacular God at the center (Revelation 21-22).” http://thegospelcoalition.org/resources/a/home_at_last_the_spectacular_god_at_the_center_revelation_21-22. As part of an exposition of Revelation chapters 21 and 22 he cited both Revelation 21:8 and Jesus’ parable of Lazarus and the rich man in Luke 16 as evidence that “hell is not filled with people who are deeply sorry for their sins.” To the contrary, Carson said, it is “filled with people who for all eternity still shake their puny fists in the face of God Almighty, in an endless existence of evil.”

Although he didn’t include it as part of that presentation, in the past he has also pointed to Revelation 22:11 (“Let the one who does wrong, still do wrong”), writing of “the vileness they will live and practice throughout all eternity.”2Carson, D. A. (2009). The Gagging of God: Christianity Confronts Pluralism. (Zondervan, Kindle Edition) p. 533. He has also elsewhere suggested the possibility that this perpetual lack of repentance on the part of the wicked, and their ongoing sinfulness, is part of the ground and justification for their eternally ongoing punishing.

Carson’s view raises several questions. How legitimate is his application of the parable of Lazarus and the rich man? Will those consigned to final punishment fail to repent and continue to sin following their judgment and sentencing? Does the Bible indicate that they will go on sinning forever, implying that they have been raised immortal? Even if it does not, if they continue to sin after judgment at all, wouldn’t they accrue additional retributive debt, requiring further punishment, during which their continued rebellion would earn them still further punishment, and so on ad infinitum throughout eternity?

Continue reading “No Penitent in Hell: A [Reformed] Response to D. A. Carson”

References
1 Carson, D. A. “Home at last: The spectacular God at the center (Revelation 21-22).” http://thegospelcoalition.org/resources/a/home_at_last_the_spectacular_god_at_the_center_revelation_21-22.
2 Carson, D. A. (2009). The Gagging of God: Christianity Confronts Pluralism. (Zondervan, Kindle Edition) p. 533.