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Christian author's book sparks charges of heresy
Rob Bell is under fire for his latest book before it even hits the shelves.
March 1st, 2011
06:00 AM ET

Christian author's book sparks charges of heresy

By Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Rob Bell, a pastor and author who has achieved rock star status in the Christian world, is preaching a false gospel, his critics say. And some of those critics are Christian rock stars in their own right.

The pastor of Mars Hill Bible Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Bell has authored a book called Love Wins: A Book About Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived, which ignited a firestorm of controversy over the weekend, weeks before it arrives in bookstores.

On Saturday, in a blog post on the popular Christian website The Gospel Coalition, Justin Taylor blasted Bell's new book, out March 29, for teaching "false doctrine":

I’m glad that Rob Bell has the integrity to be lay [sic] his cards on the table about universalism. It seems that this is not just optimism about the fate of those who haven’t heard the Good News, but (as it seems from below) full-blown hell-is-empty-everyone-gets-saved universalism.

Universalism, in its broadest terms, preaches that everyone goes to heaven and that there is no hell. Critics say it represents a break from traditional Christianity, which they say holds that heaven and hell are very real places. In most Christian circles, universalism is a dirty word.

Taylor's post was quickly tweeted by several prominent pastors, including John Piper and Mark Driscoll, connected to the Gospel Coalition, a coalition of theologically conservative evangelical churches, and a full-blown theological controversy was on. By Monday, Taylor's response post had racked up a quarter million hits.

Other bloggers, meanwhile, are calling Bell an outright heretic.

Bell is not the first prominent Christian pastor to be recently accused of wading into theologically troubled waters. Bishop Carlton Pearson, once a mentee of famed Pentecostal televangelist Oral Roberts, has been run out of two churches and branded a heretic for preaching what he says is a gospel of inclusion with broad universalist themes.

Last year, Brian McLaren - a popular Christian author and a former pastor - was accused of breaking with Christian orthodoxy and delving headlong into universalism in his book A New Kind of Christianity.

But it's rare that theological arguments become top ten trending topics on Twitter, as Rob Bell did on Saturday.

“To be honest, it was a pretty rough weekend,” Taylor said in a phone interview. The 34-year-old heads the editorial content for Crossway, a Christian publishing company in Wheaton, Illinois.  Taylor he says his blog expresses his personal opinion not the opinion of the coalition.

"We’re talking about the big things here, things that have been historically defined as orthodox, " he said. "I have a high degree of confidence in what God is saying and what we can understand."

Though many things that separate Catholics, Protestants, and Orthodox Christians, “this isn’t one of them," Taylor said. "We’ve historically agreed on many things, the person of Christ, heaven and hell. This isn’t a peripheral academic debate. What Rob Bell is talking about gets to the heart of Christianity.”

Taylor has not read Bell's forthcoming book in its entirety. His blog post was in response to the description released by Bell publisher HarperOne and a promotional video that features Bell.

"Rob Bell hasn’t sinned against me personally,” Taylor said, which is why he did not go to Bell before making his comments public. Instead, Taylor said, Bell's book represents a clear example of false teaching.

In the promotional video Bell refers to the nonviolent Indian independence leader Mahatma Gandhi, a Hindu, and asks, "Gandhi's in hell? He is?"

"And someone knows this for sure?" Bell continues. "Will billions and billions of people burn forever in hell? And if that's the case how do you become one of the few? "

The video follows a trend in Bell's career as a pastor: he has long asked tough theological questions and challenged traditional answers. The short promotional video raises lots of questions without offering definitive answers.

"What we believe about heaven and hell is incredibly important because it exposes what we believe about who God is and what God is like," Bell says in it. " The good news is that love wins."

Those lines raised eyebrows for Taylor and others. "It is not preaching the gospel as found in the New Testament," Taylor said. "The New Testament is pretty clear if someone preaches a false gospel… that we are to reject that and have nothing to do with them."

For all his hipster leanings - including black rimmed glasses - Bell has a traditional pedigree. He went to Wheaton College, the Harvard of Christian schools, and later graduated from Fuller Theological Seminary with a Master of Divinity.

But the Mars Hill Bible Church, which Bell founded, is not attached to any denomination. Were it attached to one - the Presbyterian or Catholic church, say - his book and video could raise eyebrows in the hierarchy and might lead to a church trial that could result in Bell's expulsion.

"A larger denomination would take his credentials and excommunicate him like they did to me,” Bishop Pearson told CNN.

By Sunday evening, Pearson was getting sent articles about the Bell flap. He said it reminded him of his days as a charismatic leader of a big church in the largest Pentecostal denomination. His questioning of hell from the pulpit led to his ouster.

"What happened to me is happening to Rob Bell," Pearson said. "If you denounce hell, it's like you are denouncing God. You’re going to be called a heretic."

“I thought my people loved me and would walk through the valley of the shadow of death with me, but they didn’t,” Pearson said.

Bell's church did not respond to requests for an interview. His Twitter feed has been silent since he posted about writing a piece for CNN's Belief Blog a few weeks ago. His publicist at HarperOne said he would not be doing publicity until his book hits shelves.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Belief • Christianity • Leaders • Michigan • United States

soundoff (2,200 Responses)
  1. richard gardner

    To paraphrase the great philospher George Carlin, A bunch of idiots arguing over whose imaginary freind is tougher!

    March 1, 2011 at 8:22 pm |
    • Where is Socrates when you need him?

      Richard: George is funny, but hardly a serious philosopher. Makes you think, but if you really pay close attention, he admits his own human idiotic tendencies. The chosen phrase above is funny and sometimes true. It is a good insight for some, but don't kid yourself by over simplifying for everyone. Lots of things get lost in translation, even when thet know the language. "Out of sight, out of mind" like you might think some people would want to be, could be translated as "invisible idiots", if only understood word for word instead of trying to understand the actual meaning. Its deep, Don't fall in unless you can handle it.

      March 1, 2011 at 11:04 pm |
  2. Non-believer

    Most kids give up their imaginary playmates between 5 and 10. It's amazing how many can't move on.

    March 1, 2011 at 8:17 pm |
    • Ready Set Go

      So when you gonna start?

      March 1, 2011 at 10:48 pm |
  3. elmopoopsie

    Its so sad that in 2011 people still believe in the invisible man in the sky that grants wishes

    March 1, 2011 at 7:58 pm |
    • Big Bird

      It so sad that so many still think their fellow human beings think that way. It probably says more about being stuck in Sesame Street.

      March 1, 2011 at 10:47 pm |
  4. Brian

    Check this out. 2500 Near death experiences. All types of religions and beliefs...all seem to go to heaven..or to the light. http://www.nderf.org/archives_2nd_half_2010_pt2.htm

    March 1, 2011 at 7:53 pm |
    • jpdistef

      Near death experiences are just that – "near death," not "after death." Neurologists do know that the human brain hallucinates when deprived of oxygen and shutting down, so this is probably the "light" people see. there is no evidence that we have souls that somehow leave our bodies/brains, enter a spirit world where they see a light, then come back into our bodies.

      March 1, 2011 at 8:01 pm |
    • Brian

      And you know this how? You've died before? I trust the 2500 eye witness accounts over your theory.

      March 1, 2011 at 8:31 pm |
    • On the inside

      And everyone has a heart but few can describe exactly how it works at the molecular level. Neurologists probably know more than most about the brain reactions near death than all those who were close. On the other hand actual physical death and rebirth/resurrection happens so infrequently, that its rather ingenuous for either side to claim to know what does or doesn't happen. Isn't to say so with certainty either way, therefore a lie? Isn't there something in most religious texts as well as non-religious morals about striving to tell the truth, at least so long as it doesn't cause harm; harm which would break the second most important commandment according to Jesus, something like love your neighbor as yourself. Its the thought that counts more than the precise wording.

      March 1, 2011 at 10:43 pm |
  5. Greg Kerr

    I have not read the book, but I already know I agree with the Ghandi comment. Jesus, the Son of God is a God of Love. I've got to ask myself what Ghandi burning in hell would have to do with love? When God sent Jesus to us He also was branded a heretic. People didn't understand His message. People think too small. God and Love are big, deep and complex things. Most non Roman Catholics would be branded heretics were they to travel back in time to the middle ages. If you keep asking God for revelations, he will reveal to you. We are God's children and thus he is our Father. What Father sends his children to hell? We can create our own hell, or help perpetuate it here on Earth.....but Hell has no place after this life. Everything after this life is in the realm of the Kingdom of God.

    March 1, 2011 at 7:47 pm |
  6. danrockwell

    who told Eric Marrapodi that Wheaton College was the "Harvard of Christian schools?" LOL!

    March 1, 2011 at 7:38 pm |
    • Shasta

      Best. Comment. Ever.

      March 1, 2011 at 8:09 pm |
  7. stormsun

    "What we believe about heaven and hell is incredibly important because it exposes what we believe about who God likes," Bell says. I would argue that it goes much deeper than that. This discussion exposes our beliefs about what we think God is. Because if God has set up standards that result in a large majority of the human beings he created suffering eternal torture and pain, then we are no longer talking about a God of mercy OR of love, are we? What are we to do? For myself, I took refuge in Pastafarianism.

    March 1, 2011 at 7:35 pm |
    • Mr. Marley

      Yes. Smokin' all that stuff definitely twists your noodle.

      March 1, 2011 at 10:26 pm |
  8. RONNIE

    You know Hell will be full from all the republicans!

    March 1, 2011 at 7:26 pm |
    • St. Paul

      I hear you knockin' but you still can't come in. How come it took so long for you to understand that Mr. Reagan?

      March 1, 2011 at 10:21 pm |
  9. Davella Jones

    Why do you say because pope IN THE ABOVE POST< THAT SHOULD READ WHY DO YOU SAY PEOPLE...not pope

    March 1, 2011 at 7:17 pm |
  10. Davella Jones

    CORRECTION>>MAKE THIS

    Why do you say because pope pope should read PEOPLE

    March 1, 2011 at 7:13 pm |
  11. Tom

    Funny. The people who are arguing that there is a heaven and a hell are mad at the people who believe there is only a heaven, while those of us who have retained the capacity for critical thought think both sides are completely blinded by irrational fantasies. Newsflash: You are both wrong. Wanna know where you go when you die? In a hole in the ground, approx 6 feet deep. End of story. Just accept it and live your life accordingly. You will be much happier.

    March 1, 2011 at 7:11 pm |
    • ST Mannew

      actually what do you know about death? nothing. So you are just guessing as all the rest. To bad you have to die to find out. So do me a fav pal, come back and tell me if there is any afterlife will ya, and listen don't forget the proof either when you come because if you do forget, I won't believe you either. Man AThe are smug. LOL

      March 1, 2011 at 7:27 pm |
    • Firesign Theatre

      We'r all bozos on this bus !

      March 1, 2011 at 10:18 pm |
  12. Humble Servant

    When Taylor explained that “the New Testament is pretty clear if someone preaches a false gospel… that we are to reject that and have nothing to do with them.” It represents exactly what is wrong with our religious teachings, human input. No one is perfect except for God and although many believe that the bible is completely divinely inspired, it was also written by men. Men that decided exactly what gospels should be included in the canonical gospels of the bible. There have been so many gospels that have been found that are not included in the bible that are written before Luke, Mark and Matthew but are not included in the bible. Gospels such as that of Saint Thomas that are said to be the exact words of Jesus himself that are not accepted by many main denominations. Any true believer that speaks the word of God is divinely inspired and deserves to be heard but not always agreed with. It is God’s one and only wish that we preach his good news and if Bell is trying to create a positive and loving image of my God, I can do nothing but appreciate his efforts.

    March 1, 2011 at 7:07 pm |
    • DavidMichael

      I was impressed, as an avowed Agnostic, that this man does what so few preachers do, he preached what Jesus preached "Love One Another" and "Do unto others as you would have done unto you." I wish those claiming him a heretic would follow the example rather than pointing to the speck in his eye with a beam in their own.

      March 1, 2011 at 7:19 pm |
    • Egypt's Root

      Amun ! or Amen for the kids !

      March 1, 2011 at 10:13 pm |
  13. Davella Jones

    For all to see how the Mother Church has handled her commands...
    Davella Jones

    CatholicMom

    history,
    The Bible was compiled by the Catholic Church almost 400 years after Jesus Christ’s ascension. The Bible is Truth and perfect. Some that read it twist it and now we have 38,000 differing beliefs, all saying the Word of God is Truth and their interpretation of the Word is the correct interpretation. The only true interpretation is the Catholic Church’s interpretation because She was given the Authority from Jesus Christ and He promised to bring them into the fullness of Truth as we can bear it. We have Sacred Tradition, the Bible, and the Magisterium which equals Christianity in its fullest measure.

    And we have this and we have that, thus, its a shame that YOU don't follow what Jesus wanted his church to be! Why do you say because pope broke off from YOUR church, and formed other communities, that they twist things? Thats a lie. Most of the protestant churches I know of, follow the same teachings and beliefs that YOUR church does. They read the same bible. Just because they broke away from the church due to all the broken things the popes and other bishops and so on did, what does that give you the right to say they aren't having Jesus truths?

    You teach Barptism saves, and thats a lie. Baptism does NOT save. Baptism is an outward sign that the believe has repented of sin, has been buried in his old ways, and is risen a new creature in Christ, It is done by immersion. Yoour church is NOT folowing what Jesus commanded, for they sprinkle, which is NOT scriptural!
    You don't even know what "personal interpetation means, you think its somebody reading and getting thier own interpetation from what they read. Go study the scripture on that lady. Stop believeing what your "pope" has told you it means, and use your own eyes, and brain, and hopefully, you will get it right.

    Your church, without spot, stain , or wrinkle...HELLO..that is GODS church, and that is what he commanded. Has your Catholic popes followed that? No. Want proof? They broke the papal succession, and boy, what a farce.

    Observe: Sixtus IV was the first pope to license the brothels of Rome; they brought him in thirty thousand ducats a year (roughly the yearly income of 30 common laborers). He also gained considerably from a tax imposed on priests who kept a mistress. Another source of income was granting privileges to rich men 'to enable them to solace certain matrons in the absence of their husbands.'
    It was in the area of indulgences that Sixtus showed a touch of genius. He was the first pontiff to decide that they could be applied to the dead. Even he was overwhelmed by their popularity. Here was an infinite source of revenue that even his greediest predecessors had not dreamed of. It was breathtaking in its implications: the pope, creature of flesh and blood, had power over the regions of the dead. Souls in torment for their misdemeanours could be released by his word, provided their pious relatives dipped into.their pockets. And which of them wouldn't if they had a spark of Christian decency? Widows and widowers, bereaved parents spent their all trying to get their loved ones out of Purgatory, painted in ever more lurid colours.
    Praying for the dead was one thing, paying for them another. Simple folk were led to believe that the pope, or those who came to their village and sold the pope's pardon, guaranteed their dead would go to heaven on the wings of indulgences. The potential for abuse was considerable. The sale of relics from the tenth century had been bad enough. . . Martyr's bones, like oil, were not a renewable commodity, but indulgences were limitless and could be priced to suit every pocket. Nothing was required of the donor or recipient, not love or compassion or prayer or repentance – only money. No practice was ever more irreligious than this. The pope grew rich in the measure that the poor were duped.
    Want to see how well the Catholic Church and the popes followed the "succession" of Jesus church?

    http://www.liberalslikechrist.org/Catholic/OneTrueChurch.html

    Its all in there. Plus, the gold coach and the Vatican mansion ...http://catholicarrogance.org/Catholic/RC_MasterMenu.htm

    March 1, 2011 at 7:04 pm |
  14. colorado citizen

    RP – Just how many times, and for how long have conservative Christians been waiting for the 'second coming'? There is much serious Biblical & theological scholarship that refutes many of the hell/brimstone teachings. It is a relief that collectively we are moving beyond primitive teachings meant to scare people into submission and keeping rigid thinking and mostly white men in positions of authority.

    A really simple way of saying this was in the article in question . . LOVE WINS. In many ways, this is like all other discrimination in which a false truth is widely taught, with fear being the driving force. Good news is that learning and communication are sweeping through human society – even in the Middle Eastern countries.

    Peace to you

    March 1, 2011 at 7:01 pm |
    • stormsun

      We have only to ask ourselves, "What Would the Flying Spaghetti Monster Do?" In this full and noodly plate, we shall find the satisfying answer to our search for piece, contentment, and eternal meatballs.

      March 1, 2011 at 7:54 pm |
    • Son Storm

      "What Would the Flying Spaghetti Monster Do?" Cause a massive tummy ache followed by the biggest case of gaseous runny diareah the world has ever seen.

      March 1, 2011 at 10:03 pm |
    • Rabid Rabbit

      Actually, the second coming has already happened, along with the rapture. All of us left here are the ones who didn't make the cut 😦

      March 2, 2011 at 12:07 am |
  15. feekoningin

    After years attending a conservative Lutheran school and growing up in a Unitarian-Universalist church, I am an atheist by faith and a Lutheran by ethic. That being said, many people describe themselves as "Old Testament" or "New Testament" in their thinking. Those who are Old Testament bellieve in the fire and brimstone, the wrathful God they should fear. Those who believe in the New Testatment follow the principle of forgiveness through divine love. Personally, I find the New Testament way a little more productive. And it's the New Testament way I believe Rob Bell advances. What this demonstrates is that interpretation evolves as we evolve. And moving from the fire and brimstone world view to a universalist world view need not be all bad. Ultimately, I think, the goal is to ensure that EVERYONE has entry into Heaven and escapes Hell. So we should find ways to make that easier, rather tha more difficult. From my understanding, Christianity should not be an exclusive club that seeks ways to limit memberhip but rather find ways to be all-inclusive. And for the person who mentioned the near death experiences, I hate to break it to you, but scientists have demonstrated that most out of body experiences are caused by stimulation of the angular gyrus in the brain when it is under stress.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:59 pm |
    • DavidMichael

      Judaism doesn't believe in Hell and that is about as Old Testament as you can get. Methinks Christians have translation issues.

      March 1, 2011 at 7:14 pm |
    • ST Mannew

      It is interesting that you say that you are “Lutheran by ethics”, why do you think that is? Did you actually see something in that conservative Lutheran school that made sense?
      Actually you were always an Atheist; you just did not know it. Unitarian Universalism is just another form of atheism.
      Actually it is a very inclusive club, all you need is Christ (Truth) to get in, and stop relying on ourselves as the standard.

      March 1, 2011 at 7:19 pm |
    • Anna

      Unitarian-Universalism is just another form of atheism? Uh, sorry, wrong; don't think you know much about UUs. I, for example, am a UU pantheist. Not atheist. Pantheist. We have Christians and Jews and atheists and agnostics and buddhists...we respect the inherent worth and dignity of all people. Many UUs believe in a higher power/god/God.

      March 1, 2011 at 8:45 pm |
    • St Manure

      What's that smell?

      March 1, 2011 at 9:52 pm |
    • Rabid Rabbit

      Anna, I think ST Mannew's insinuation was that if you don't believe in HIS God (which is, of course, the ONLY TRUE God, because ST Mannew believes so) or HIS views of God (which are the only complete and correct views, because otherwise HE wouldn't believe them), then you by HIS definition believe in something you think is God (or Gods, or Divine Principle or whatever) but ISN'T, and so whatever you believe in ISN'T God, so you are an atheist whether you know it or not. That about right, ST Mannew? (I trust the ST are initials and not an abbreviation insinuating that you have actually been beatified.)

      I am also a UU and also not an atheist. Don't worry, ST Mannew, you can come to Universalist heaven if yours is full, we take everybody 🙂

      March 2, 2011 at 12:04 am |
  16. Jackson

    Yes – thank you LBC Songbird! False prophet indeed! A prophet TOWS THE LINE Bell. If people sincerely believe in magical other fire worlds that eternally punish people that disagree with them it makes it TRUE. Because a book written by other people who believed kind of the same thing SAID IT. So it MUST BE TRUE. See the reasoning Bell?

    March 1, 2011 at 6:58 pm |
  17. Jane Doe

    Well, if universalism is true, this is great news for atheists! I guess you are going to heaven after all.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:57 pm |
    • I like Jane Doe

      I like that Jane Doe, it's cute!!

      March 1, 2011 at 7:30 pm |
    • jpdistef

      Yes, wouldn't that be great if us atheists get to go to heaven. Just like Thor and Zeus, heaven and hell, we're not going to spend any time in our lives acting as if any of these outrageous, unsubstantiated myths are true. So we will live this life to its fullest, because this is the ONLY life that believers and unbelievers can be absolutely certain we do have.

      March 1, 2011 at 7:49 pm |
    • Rabid Rabbit

      @jpdistef: Speaking as a universalist, I, like you, don't have to live my life worrying about how it will affect what comes next. Only real difference is, if I'm right, I'll get to tell you "I told you so" on the other side, but if you're right, you won't 🙂

      March 1, 2011 at 11:52 pm |
  18. Jackson

    Dammit Bell – this is what happens when you try applying some sort of moral logic or reasoning to Christianity! I mean, what value does the religion have if it doesn't hold that non-believers all go to hell forever and ever? Now get back in line – all the denominations agree on this. Even if they think the other denominations' members are going to hell.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:53 pm |
    • CSH

      While, I believe in hell as the Bible teaches, I do not believe that hell burns forever. Not all Christian churches believe in an eternal hellfire. I can support my position on hell ceasing to exist after it has done it destructive purpose of the wicked who perish in its flames.

      March 1, 2011 at 7:10 pm |
    • All Aboard

      Ah go to Bell

      March 1, 2011 at 7:47 pm |
  19. LBCSongbird

    If you don't believe that germs can make you sick, you still get sick. Just because you don't believe in hell doesn't mean it isn't real and being a false prophet won't send you there.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:49 pm |
    • Jackson

      Yes – thank you LBC Songbird! False prophet indeed! A prophet TOWS THE LINE Bell. If people sincerely believe in magical other fire worlds that eternally punish people that disagree with them it makes it TRUE. Because a book written by other people who believed kind of the same thing SAID IT. So it MUST BE TRUE. See the reasoning Bell?

      March 1, 2011 at 6:59 pm |
    • DavidMichael

      But the bible itself doesn't speak of hell, but Sheol. You all do realize that the bible wasn't written in English, right? Anyway, Sheol is the place of the dead. In Judaism, you know, that religion that a good portion of the Christian bible stole, doesn't believe in a hell either. Clearly, Sheol and the Christian version of hell is only a mistranslation. Besides, Hell makes no logical sense. If God is all knowing and all powerful, why did He create Satan, who per the story of Job , is a minion of God. If God created Satan, then God also created. And again, if God is all-knowing, why was I created when God knew before I was born that I would already be damned? It simply isn't logical.

      March 1, 2011 at 7:12 pm |
    • Mark from Canada

      Bertrand Russel gave the same argument about a teapot in orbit around the sun. He claimed that one was there and that the only reason why we couldn't see it was that our telescopes are not powerful enough to detect it. On the other hand, myself and many others are atheist about the teapot. I think we are fairly safe in this belief. Hell, heaven and the rest of the biblical myth is about as real as that teapot. It is a human fabricated myth. Christians keep saying that the human mind is incapable of grasping or understanding a world as complex as one created by god, but as Carlan said – we are not made in God's image, we created God in our own image and likeness. History is very clear about this – unless you are a simple minded moron who likes to be indoctrinated by a religious mass taking your money and critical free-thinking skills.

      March 1, 2011 at 7:14 pm |
    • Zoro Rides Again - I Give You Fire

      DavidMichael: I thought the Hebrews brought Satan back to Jerusalem with them when the Persians sent him back with them, along with the Sons of Light and the Son of Darkness so well mentioned by the Essenes? Wasn't it the Persian Zoroastrians, the ones who used fire in their worship alters, the eternal flame thing like on Kennedy's grave and the Unitarian Universalist sign, who started the concept of Hell? Or was that just the Good God, the Bad God and Ugly God....oops sorry wrong theology movie...I mean the concept of angels, that were learned down there by the rivers of Babylon?

      March 1, 2011 at 7:41 pm |
    • jpdistef

      LBCSongbird, your same logic applies the other way – just because you DO believe in hell doesn't mean it's real or that anyone goes there.

      March 1, 2011 at 7:44 pm |
    • Moody Blue Question

      Is a person better if they do right because they are scared to death they will go to hell if they don't, or is it better to do right because its the right thing to do? The same logic applie to heaven. What does it mean to curb your greed and not do things you would like to on earth, while condemning everyone else who doesn't do the same and making them as miserable as you are, just so one day you'll be able to walk on streets of gold? Wouldn't that be like the ultimate greed in Gods eyes, wanting something so much that your willing to persecute others to get it? It's not the way that you say it, when you say those things to me, its more the way you really mean it when you tell me what will be.

      March 1, 2011 at 7:56 pm |
  20. lh

    Much ado about nothing. The book isn't even out yet, and people are making huge assumptions about what the book says based on Bell's video. All he does is ask questions–his answers will likely be in his book.

    March 1, 2011 at 6:48 pm |
    • David, CA

      I believe there is indeed a hell- and it's filled with hypocritical bigot religious whack jobs.... I think they call it the bible belt....

      March 1, 2011 at 7:53 pm |
    • thes33k3r

      "Rob Bell, a pastor and author who has achieved rock star status in the Christian world, is preaching a false gospel, his critics say."
      –All preachers (and imams, rabbis, priests) are preaching a false gospel.

      March 1, 2011 at 8:05 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.