Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Reviewing Francis Chan and Preston Sprinkle's Erasing Hell: what God said about eternity, and the things we made up

It is my strong preference to read, talk, and think about Heaven, but it is essential that we also know about Hell. I want to have a proper understanding of Hell for a host of reasons. I read about it regularly in the Good Book, people often talk about it unbiblically, I teach about it occasionally, and Jesus has saved His people from it eternally. I want others to know what it means to call Jesus the Savior of the world, therefore, I need to learn about Hell. Erasing Hell helped with that.

Erasing Hell is the third Francis Chan book I have read. Like thousands of others, I have greatly benefited from reading his books as well as listening to his sermons. Francis Chan can make challenging topics more understandable, and he has a knack for getting people from both ends of the spectrum to listen. Preston Sprinkle is new to me, but I think he's alright since he rolls with Chan.

Erasing Hell did not get my juices flowin' like some of Chan's other books (Crazy Love and Forgotten God), but the book is solid. Erasing Hell came largely in response to Rob Bell's Love Wins, and Chan and Sprinkle respectfully refute some of Bell's unorthodox teachings. Regardless of whether you are a fan of Bell's teachings, Chan and Sprinkle provide a profitable book about a not so easy topic. You may not always agree with what Chan and Sprinkle say, but they speak humbly and in a manner that can appeal to both seasoned and beginning theologians. Below is how the book is organized as well as a book trailer.

Chapter 1: Does Everyone Go to Heaven?
Chapter 2: Has Hell Changed? Or Have We?
Chapter 3: What Jesus Actually Said about Hell
Chapter 4: What Jesus' Followers Said about Hell
Chapter 5: What Does This Have to Do with me?
Chapter 6: "What If God ...?"
Chapter 7: Don't Be Overwhelmed
Appendix: Frequently Asked Questions
About the Author
About the Coauthor
Sample Chapter from Forgotten God