The following article was published in HuffPostReligion by Faheem Younus:
Southern Baptists should be commended for their actions on June 15.
No, not for passing a resolution to support their belief in an “eternal, conscious punishment” (or hell) for non-Christians; they were dead wrong in understanding Jesus’ teachings there. But for their ability to develop consensus around such an ambiguous notion. It is a hell of a success.
Seriously, there is no dearth of theories when it comes to the big fire pit. Experts love to debate whether hell is time-bound or eternal, literal or symbolic, and exclusive to non-members or open to mankind.
Add to these theories the premise of hell by Prophet Muhammad: a place largely symbolic, extremely inclusive but not eternal.
Think of hell as a hospital where sick souls belonging to any religion will be admitted for, not punishment, but treatment, albeit a painful one. And since there is no health insurance company known to man that would be willing to pay for an eternal hospitalization…
No, seriously. When it comes to duration, Prophet Muhammad clearly agrees with Pastor Rob Bell’s hell: Not eternal.