Originally Posted by terjw
OK - but leaving aside the book of Revelations which could mean anything - what I meant to say about hell being a problem is that logically if you think your friends are going to hell because they don't believe - that should drive you to try to convert them. And evangelists who try to do that to me are a real turn off. So if you want to be friends with others - you don't try to convert them. But ... You see where I'm coming from here. It's not really me with the problem. We are friends because we are friends - nothing else. But I just think that must be a conflict in their minds not to try to convert me if they really believe the gospel which the bible states (unless you interpret it as a Universalist).
Yes, I also understand the temptation of the believer to try to convert their non-believing friends because if you really are convinced that those who don't believe will be punished for it by the big man in the sky you obviously want those you love to be spared those things.
Btw - I don't subscribe to the idea that the book of revelations could mean anything though. It's just an extremely complicated book that one either understands or doesn't understand, and that one even if one understands it either believes or doesn't believe in. Not that I claim to understand it completely myself, even (much) less so now because it's been 25 or 30 years ago that I 'studied it' (well, sorta), but in my opinion it's a lot less open to interpretation than most think.