Why is Bill Gates going to hell?

Why is Bill Gates going to hell?  I have no idea and I don’t even know that he is.  But every once in a while you run across a graphic created by a critic of Christianity (and religion) which attempts to show why its soteriology doesn’t make sense… or something.

bill gates

So whats the problem?  Simple, no one goes to hell because they believe in the wrong God according to the Christian worldview.  People go to hell for violating the laws of God.  If Bill Gates ends up in hell it was his sin which did him in, not wrong belief.

“Believing in [the right] God” is what prevents Hell, not the cause of it.  In the same way patients who die from a disease didn’t die for lack of a doctor or medicine.  They died from their disease.  The mistake is conflating the cause of punishment in Hell (sin) and not having a remedy (trust in Jesus’ sacrifice for remission of sins) for the outcome (an eternal punishment for rebellion against The Eternal Sovereign).

Comments

  1. If there is a disease that leads to death and there is a medicine which prevents it, you are going to die because the disease AND because you don’t take the medicine.

    Therefore it is correct to say that you will die for not taking the medicine.

    It makes sense.

  2. Interesting perspective…

    Your god creates you with full knowledge that your disease (sin) is unavoidable.
    The only remedy is acceptance of the Jesus story or else you’re destined for hell.

    Sounds like blackmail to me.

    The point of the graphic is to illustrate the absurdity of belief over behavior.
    Many believers espouse the idea that good deeds don’t get you to heaven without the fundamental belief in Jesus – so regardless of Bill’s philanthropic nature, he’s destined for eternal torment.

    • Z

      Do you feel the same way when the doctor tells you there is only one medicine for your illness? Do you say thats not fair or do you take the medicine?

  3. I would be rather suspect if it was the doctor who gave me the illness in the first place.

  4. John,

    “There has never been a death certificate that listed the cause of death as cancer and lack of chemo.”

    There has never been a whole humanity dying because of cancer.
    Use the analogy in its context.

  5. John,

    “Do you feel the same way when the doctor tells you there is only one medicine for your illness?”

    It could be a quark talking about a fifticious illness.

    “Do you say thats not fair or do you take the medicine?”

    Would I take the concoction?

  6. paynehollow says:

    People go to hell for violating the laws of God.

    Just a clarification. In the Christian belief system (mainstream evangelical brand, anyway), we don’t go to hell for violating the laws of God (we ALL violate the laws of God). God offers us the gift of eternal life/the Kingdom of God. We go to “hell,” if we do, by choosing to not accept the gift of eternal life. It is rejecting the offer that condemns us, not our sin/breaking of laws.

    And then, we could get in to what it means to “reject the offer,” but the point stands, I think.

    Wouldn’t you agree that’s a more closely accurate understanding of the traditional orthodox view of salvation/non-salvation?

    ~Dan Trabue

  7. So, John, if I understand your view correctly, you believe we are all born destined for hell (because we have this disease of sin) and the only way to avoid hell is to believe the Jesus story?

    • I wouldnt say destined because 1) I dont believe in determinism and 2) we have a choice.

      It’s like being unemployed. If you are offered a job you can take it or refuse it. Whether you like the job is irrelevant to you being able to take it.

      I would say we are born on a trajectory toward hell, but not destined toward it.

    • You could also say everyone is born onto a slowly sinking ship. However there are enough life vests for everyone and whether you put one on or not is your own doing. Refusing the vest the crew is offering because you dont like the color or it doesnt fit exactly how youd like doesnt mean youre destined to drown. If you run around the ship enjoying the amenities rather than seeking out the vest you cant blame the vest for your decision to go down with the ship.

  8. John,

    One year old children don’t take jobs nor dress themselves with life vests.

    • How does that rebut my post even given the reference to my analogies? If the child dies or is unemployed it is because they drown or didnt have a job.

  9. I’m afraid your analogies still don’t hold water – no pun intended.

    “Born on a trajectory toward hell” is the same as destined for it.

    I’m sorry if you can’t understand the concept of blackmail by being born on a sinking ship and headed for eternal torment unless you accept the conditions of being saved from that sinking ship. The all-powerful deity you worship placed you on that ship and created those conditions in the first place.

    • And thats what youd tell a doctor who has the only cure for your disease?

      To be honest thats the silliest reason to reject salvation.

      By the way destined means theres no way to avoid it. Thats what destiny is. On the ship you are not destined to drown. Youve got options.

    • Also, Z, stick around, you’ll just love tomorrow’s post!

  10. John,

    The case of one year old child debunks your posts.

    You say “If you are offered a job you can take it or refuse it.”, the child can do neither.

    You say “whether you put one on or not is your own doing”, the child is dependant.
    You say “Refusing the vest”, the child doesn’t refuse the vest.
    You say “you cant blame the vest for your decision to go down with the ship”, the child doesn’t take that decision.

    • I offer jobs to my children all the time. Where do you get the idea that they cant do a job?

      Nonetheless the post stands as it does. My analogies, if flawed, dont impact my post. It just means I offered bad analogies.

      You know I get the distinct feeling you are intentionally being a pain in the ass and I’m not sure how long I’ll let it roll off.

  11. John,

    “I offer jobs to my children all the time. Where do you get the idea that they cant do a job?”

    The context is clear.
    I said “the” child, not “a” child. And contextually the child referred was a “one year old” one.
    I get the feeling you are playing dumb.

    “Nonetheless the post stands as it does. My analogies, if flawed, dont impact my post. It just means I offered bad analogies.”

    If you are referring to the heading post, my objections are in my first post in this thread.

    “You know I get the distinct feeling you are intentionally being a pain in the ass and I’m not sure how long I’ll let it roll off.”

    First: I don’t know that. I’m not a mind-reader telepathist.
    Second: it is not my intention to be a pain in the ass. I could be a side effect on those who find painful to get their opinions being confronted.

    • I has been a near universal opinion by other commenters here that you are in fact a pain in the ass to the degree it is difficult to helieve its not intentional. Second I dont have a problem with my views being confronted, it happens all the time.

      You nitpick on the mundane tangents. My post stands as it is and the analogies are not a part of the post and are only an attempt to clarify what seemed to be a misunderstanding. I really have no investment in whether they were perfect analogies because they served to clarify the broader point which is the distinction between the cause of an event and a remedy.

  12. John,

    “I has been a near universal opinion by other commenters here that you are in fact a pain in the ass to the degree it is difficult to helieve its not intentional.”

    Near universal? I don’t accept unfounded data.
    And there are alternative explanations to intentional “paining in the ass”, such the one I mentioned.

    “Second I dont have a problem with my views being confronted, it happens all the time.”

    So, what is the pain then? Could you explain what is the problem?

    “You nitpick on the mundane tangents.”

    I addressed the issue.
    In my first post I said “you are going to die because the disease AND because you don’t take the medicine”.
    You focus on the first cause to dismiss the second one.

    You are wrong. “is going to hell for not believing in God” makes sense.

    You are the one who diverts to mundane tangents as you force the analogy with a mundane situation into identitity.

  13. I vote pain in the ass. That’s one more vote toward universal opinion and constitutes supporting data. But pains in the ass on blogs don’t bother me as they do others.

  14. “Near universality” is still unfounded.

  15. Yes, but the real problem is the Christian Mob that compiled the bible were the ones who devised the nonsense about the doctrine of sin in the first place!

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