How many people are in hell? | Bishop Robert Barron

– Hell is a corollary of two
more fundamental teachings: Namely, that God is love And that we’re free, Which means we can respond
to that love, We can incorporate that love,
we can hook ourselves onto it, Or we can resist it. And hell would be the permanent And eternal absolute ”no” to God. If you are at a party- There’s a party swirling around you. Everyone’s having a great time. There’s music and there’s good
food and everyone’s laughing, But you’re in the worst
mood of your life. That party is
increasing your suffering. If you were by yourself, You wouldn’t suffer as much
as you would in that party. Well, see, hell would be like that. ’The Bible’s very clear
on the existence of hell.’ Well, some time ago, I did a video Where I suggested we may hope
that all people be saved. I didn’t say, ”I know
all people are saved.” I didn’t say, ”No problem,
don’t worry about it.” I said, ”We may hope.” And I must say
I was very surprised At the vehemence of the
reaction of some people, Who seem to be very enthusiastic
about a populated hell. The position I take, I think,
is kind of a middle ground Between saying, ”Well, obviously
everyone goes to heaven,” And ”Well, no, obviously
there’s, you know, lots and lots, Or most people in hell.” Mine, I think, is a middle position. What are arguments
for a crowded hell? Well, look around us. I mean, that’s easy in a way.

There’s plenty of wickedness
to go around. And so we can say Hitler and Stalin Are the real limited cases, But come on, look around,
and look in. Well, the Bible says,
”There’s no man righteous, No, not one.” So that’s easy in a way That, yeah, if I just
look at human achievement, Morally speaking, I’d say
most of us would go to hell. What’s the counter argument? God, and God’s love
and God’s mercy. And more to it, what God
has accomplished in Christ. The Father sent the Son where? Into our sin so that
He could, in principle, Carry everybody back to the Father. So yes, I look all around,
what do I see? People destined for hell. Jesus himself said that, ’The
road to perdition is wide And most taken.’ Yeah sure, that’s true, But- But that same Jesus went
to the end of that road So that as we run away
from the Father, We are running into the
arms of the Son. Are we ready for
intimacy with God, Which is what heaven means? Well, not until we’ve
purged selfishness, Cruelty, different forms of
wickedness from our lives. We require, therefore,
’the schola animarum,’ The school of souls,
this purgative process By which we’re readied for love. Might this take place
even after we die? Let’s face it, in this
life, it’s not the case That the best people get rewarded,

And the most wicked people
are punished. I mean sometimes, but not always. And so people, I think,
very naturally have said, ”No, there must be some realm
where things are set right. Where a God, who is a God of
justice, sets things right.” Now, is anyone in the state of hell, Permanent, everlasting
rejection of God? Well, we don’t know. Purgatory, a place of purification, Where imperfections
are burned away, Where things are set right. Might we hope for that, hope
for that, even for all people? We may hope- I don’t know it. To claim to know it is
to fall into a heresy. I’m not gonna do that. But I may hope, Given the acrobatic display
of God’s love in Christ, I may hope that
all people be saved.

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