In all the stuff about Rob Bells new book, I have not heard much mention of previous books tackling Heaven and Hell . . . I guess we live in an instant culture, if it was written a few years ago, and we have not read it yet . . . man, are we out of touch! Well, I do not hold with that . . . and regardless of whether you agree with Bell or not (and, that is another thing, why do we have to agree or disagree? Why, in the last few years, does conversation / discourse about any topic become so focused on “which side you are on”?) For me, I am hoping (and praying, desperately most of the time) that I am on the Lords side . . . if He will have me – I am certainly not going to be on anyone elses . . .
So, in their day, these books were seen as significant . . . (and let us remember, that Rob is yet to write a specific book about what women can (and cannot) get up to in the home, church and leadership in general . . . so the flaming ball of burning fury over this book may be nothing more than a soggy matchstick . . . )
Books worth reading again on the subject of Heaven and Hell:
The Message of Heaven and Hell – Bruce Milne (Straight down the line evangelical)
Heaven and Hell – Emanuel Swedenborg (a bit trippy, but an incredible theologian)
Heaven and Hell – RT Kendall and Alex Buchannan (Conservative mixed with a bit of Charismatic stuff)
Visions of Heaven and Hell – John Bunyan (When you get into what he has written, Bunyan is scarier than Calvin . . . Calvin and Hobbes, obviously, I would not diss Calvin . . . he is too scary)
The Marriage of Heaven and Hell – William Blake (for some not so light fiction / poetry on the subject – does for the end times what Paradise Lost did for the Fall)
And the Lamb Wins – Simon Ponsonby (A regular at New Wine and a great biblical scholar) – added, with thanks to Peter Ould!
And, I am sure this has nothing to do with Rob Bells book and is pure coincidence, but there is also a book out soon (June 2011) . . .
Good Questions on Heaven and Hell – Christianity Today International
We would do well to remember that people have written on this topic before, there truly is nothing new under the sun . . . however beautifully it is packaged.