Recently, I posted about an upcoming documentary promoting the Christian Universalist view of hell, called Hellbound? An interesting piece of news is that, one of the pastors who vocally supported that view was fired by his church (you can see a newspaper clipping of it in the preview, but here’s a news article), Chad Holtz, has since changed his mind on the subject, and has returned, I think, to the traditional view of eternal torment. From his posting “I Repent”
I repent of my past denial of hell or that a person could ever be eternally separated from a holy God. I know now that I had no fear of God. Therefore, I had no knowledge of God (Prov. 1:7). I was a fool with an MDiv. I was wrong.
Marrow’s Chapel United Methodist Church was right to ask me to leave. It was God’s mercy. I am so sorry for the pain I caused them through that entire ordeal last year and I ask their forgiveness. I have wept many tears over the last many months, pleading with God that no one would be lost for my prideful and blind confident assertions (1 Tim. 1:7). Love doesn’t win. God wins. And it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of a holy, living God (Heb. 10.31). I lost sight of this and God, in His mercy, granted me a chance to repent.
My old blog will be deleted this weekend (and this one was only created for the purpose of this post).
It is a reality that if you don’t agree with the doctrines or politics of the board of elders of a church (who supposedly represent what the church founders and congregants believe), you shouldn’t be up front leading them in a different direction.
But instead of finding a new church, he dropped out, hit the bottom, and his addictions, including porno and extramarital affairs consumed his life and marriage.
I realize now that much if not all of what I did in the past was from a place of pride. A love of self more than God and a desire to build my own kingdom (blog readers, facebook friends, amens) rather than God’s Kingdom. God resists the proud, and I was most certainly being resisted….
My addiction and adultery all took place while serving as a pastor and going through seminary. I knew a lot about God but did not know God. I had no fear of God, denying that such a loving God could ever send a soul to hell. But if there was ever a person to whom our Lord would say, “Depart from me, I never knew you,” it was most surely I.
My first observation is, it is too bad that he did not consider the Conditionalist view – he may not have had to repent of error.
Second, it is too bad the high profile people often have messed up inner lives, probably because they became high profile at the expense of really growing into spiritual people with healthy marriages along the way. Keeps me wary of notoriety and focused on becoming a better person rather than a more well known one.