It’s a trap!

OK, time to put yesterday’s post, The Party That Never Ends?, into some perspective. In writing that possible scenario of what Hell might be like, I was inspired by the classic “Be Careful What You Wish For” philosophy. Or, perhaps, the “If It Sounds Too Good to Be True, It Probably Is” adage. Also, inspired by any number of TV episodes, short stories and the like where the protagonist desperately wants something to be one way but finds the reality isn’t so great after all. Let’s take a few plots from the original “Twilight Zone” TV series as examples:

  • Aliens visit Earth and offer to begin taking people to their planet. Everyone is happy about this, all the more so because the aliens are carrying around a book titled “To Serve Man.” Great, they want to help us! The first batch of humans goes on their merry way and one of them, after a friendly alien urges him to eat more during the voyage, realizes that the book “To Serve Man” isn’t a philosophical treatise or mission statement. Instead, it’s a cookbook on how best to prepare humans to eat them.
  • A very farsighted, introverted guy wishes people would just disappear so that he could be alone to enjoy his books. He finds one day that everyone is indeed gone and goes to the library, whereupon he stumbles on a step, his eyeglasses shatter, and he realizes he won’t be able to read a single word of any books now.
  • A man makes a deal with Satan for eternal life and indestructibility, thinking, “Hey, if I can’t die, he can’t claim my soul…ever.” Satan makes his life so miserable, making the indestructibility such a strain and a curse on the man, that he simply gives up and asks Satan to kill him, thus forfeiting his soul.

See a trend?

What looks really good on the surface may not be so good over the long run, or even the short run sometimes. Now, yesterday’s post may seem to put Hell is a potentially positive light. Big Man of Raving Black Lunatic suggested as much in the comments, saying that it makes Satan look like a nice guy. Big Man is right to a large degree (and thanks for pointing out the fact I didn’t make the bad implications clear enough), because I was making a subtle point and trying not to write an even longer post than I already had, and my overriding point may have gotten missed. So, let me clarify, because you definitely don’t want to go to Hell.

Let’s assume my musings yesterday are on the money and Satan has made Hell into party central for many (maybe even most) folks. If so, he ain’t doing it for your benefit. His sole mission is to oppose God, and taking souls away from God is only the first step. Satan hates humans because God set them up to be His children and to be set above the angels, including the demon formerly known as the covering cherub Lucifer. Because God loves us and wants us to choose Him, it hurts Him when we don’t. I imagine it hurts Him a lot more to know what Satan has in store for us when we choose to reject Heaven. If there’s a party in Hell right now, it’s going to end at some point, and rudely.

Satan is a liar of the worst kind. And if what he’s offering looks good, it’s only to mask something much worse down the the line.

And even if there’s a party and Satan doesn’t stop it and suddenly reveal all the demonic torturers he’s had hiding in the shadows, believe you me that he will find a way to make sure you get so sick of that endless party that you will wish you never had to party again. I mean, you might like to sit at your XBox 360 till all hours of the night, and if someone told you you could do nothing but play it and they’d make sure all your other shit got taken care of and send food into you, that might sound great. Up until the point you’ve played all your games several times, get up to head out, and realize the door is locked and it’s going to stay that way forever.

Satan wants you in Hell, and he wants to keep you there. As I theorized in an earlier post, End of the Line?, Hell might not be the end of every damned person’s story. I won’t go into the details of why I think that there’s still a chance even then…so just read the old post…but there is a point of no return eventually, and it’s called the Lake of Fire. So think about it. If Satan wants to keep you from getting to Heaven, and if there is still a chance even in Hell to redeem yourself by the time Judgment Day rolls around, what’s the best way to keep you from choosing Jesus even in Hell?

Give you what you think you want. Wouldn’t that be the nastiest trick ever?

As Big Man points out, the Bible does refer to Hell as place of torment and punishment at times, and the guy in Hell wishing for a drink of water from the guy over in Heaven is one example. But I still think a lot of talk about Hell in the Bible is symbolic because it is so vague on particulars. I believe it is meant to convey that Hell is a bad place to go, but doesn’t necessarily tell you all the reasons why. But maybe it was fire and brimstone and pitchforks back in Jesus’ time…after all let’s remember that prior to Jesus’ crucifixion, there were a lot of people in Hell because there hadn’t been a savior and most people didn’t meet God’s criteria for salvation. All that time Jesus was dead and before he rose back up, he wasn’t resting, folks. Most likely, he was in Hell spreading the Word of God and letting the damned know that it was time to choose a side on their own: Him and salvation, or Satan. Jesus didn’t die and go to Heaven. He didn’t finally get to Heaven until he rose from the dead and tied up some loose ends on Earth.

As my End of the Line? post suggests, I suspect many would still have rejected God’s way out of spite, even with Jesus there teaching them there was a better way and a better place to go if they would accept him as lord and savior.

It’s entirely possible Satan has changed up Hell a bit since then. In the Old Testament times and during Jesus’ lifetime, Satan wouldn’t have any reason to make Hell look good. As far as he could tell, he had it made. He wasn’t expecting Jesus. He didn’t realize what God had up His sleeve.

Now that Satan does know, it seems entirely possible (though certainly not definite) that he might make Hell seem a lot more attractive now. At least for as long as it takes to get the souls in his grasp so twisted up that they never look toward God at all, or to keep them distracted until everything foul gets tossed into the Lake of Fire and thus the ultimate damnation…the truly eternal separation from God.

That party doesn’t look so fun now, does it?


Deacon Blue is the blogging persona of editor and writer Jeffrey Bouley. The opinions of Jeff himself on this blog, and those expressed as Deacon Blue, in NO WAY should be construed as the opinions of anyone with whom he has worked, currently works, or will work with in the future. They are personal opinions and views, and are sometimes, frankly, expressed in more outrageous terms than I truly feel most days.

Jeff Bouley


Jeff Bouley

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April 2008

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