I’ve been studying the doctrine of hell recently to prepare to write a short article on the topic, and this is the finest overview of this difficult doctrine that I’ve read:
Here’s an outline of this little book:
1. Would a loving God really send good people to hell?
Answer: That’s “the wrong question, and it leads people to wrong answers. The right question, the one that Paul answers in Romans, is, ‘How can a loving and just God declare the guilty to be right with him?’ Or, ‘How can those who deserve hell go to heaven?'” (p. 10).
2. What does the Bible teach about hell?
- Hell is punishment.
- Hell is destruction.
- Hell is banishment.
- Hell is a place of suffering.
- Hell is eternal.
3. How does hell affect our theology and practice?
- Theological Faithfulness and Hell
- The Christian Worldview and Hell
- God and Hell
- Humanity, Sin, and Hell
- Jesus and Hell
- Heaven and Hell
- The Church’s Mission and Hell
4. For Further Reading
- Carson, D. A. The Gagging of God: Christianity Confronts Pluralism. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1996. See “On Banishing the Lake of Fire,” pp. 515–36. [Amazon | WTS Books]
- Davies, Eryl. An Angry God? The Biblical Doctrine of Wrath, Final Judgment, and Hell. Bridgend: Evangelical Press of Wales, 1991. [Amazon]
- Dixon, Larry. The Other Side of the Good News: Confronting the Contemporary Challenges to Jesus’ Teaching on Hell. Wheaton: BridgePoint, 1992. [Amazon]
- Fudge, Edward, and Robert A Peterson. Two Views of Hell: A Biblical and Theological Dialogue. Downers Grove: IVP, 2000. [Amazon]
- Milne, Bruce. The Message of Heaven and Hell: Grace and Destiny. Bible Speaks Today. Downers Grove: IVP, 2002. [Amazon | WTS Books]
- Morgan, Christopher W. Jonathan Edwards and Hell. Fearn, Scotland: Mentor, 2004. [Amazon]
- Morgan, Christopher W., and Robert A. Peterson, eds. Hell under Fire: Modern Scholarship Reinvents Eternal Punishment. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2004. [Amazon | WTS Books]
- ———, eds. Faith Comes by Hearing: A Response to Inclusivism. Downers Grove: IVP, 2008. [Amazon | WTS Books]
- Morris, Leon. The Biblical Doctrine of Judgment. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1960. [Amazon]
- Peterson, Robert A. Hell on Trial: The Case for Eternal Punishment. Phillipsburg, NJ: Presbyterian & Reformed, 1995. [Amazon | WTS Books]
- Shedd, William G. T. The Doctrine of Endless Punishment. Edinburgh: Banner of Truth, 1986. [Amazon]
And here are two other books in P&R’s “Basics of the Faith Series”: