If you’re anything like the majority of Americans, you’ve paid some heed to the recent Casey Anthony trial that’s dominated the news these past few weeks. The case has become one of those ordeals that captures the interest of an entire nation and sneaks its way into every coffee-shop discussion and every house-wife’s gossip.
For every person who’s followed the case, there is someone who has an opinion on how it should have resulted. Most folks seem to share a similar opinion: she’s guilty, she deserves to be punished, and by declaring her innocent the court is being unfairly blind to justice. Many of the customers at the bank where I work have used some of those exact words.
This is evidenced by the mob of protesters who gathered at her release from prison. Shouts of “Baby killer!” filled the air as the crowds expressed their displeasure that Miss Anthony did not suffer a worse fate for her alleged actions.
Casey Anthony Verdict Outrage Spills Online
Casey Anthony’s Release Stirs Up Public Outrage
Hundreds Protest Casey Anthony’s Jail Release
Any judge or jury who doesn’t punish the guilty party is labeled unjust and unfair. People hate to see justice denied. They hate to see the guilty go without paying the price for their wrongdoing. If someone commits a crime, everyone wants to see them get exactly what they deserve.
That is, until you come to the topic of hell. Then the lines of justice are re-defined.
If a guilty party deserves punishment for sinning against another person, why shouldn’t a soul deserve punishment for sinning against God Almighty? If a judge is considered unjust for not sentencing a guilty party, why is God considered unjust if He does?
In my previous article, Is Hell Real?, I used Scripture as the ultimate authority for the doctrine of hell. Those who deny hell’s existence, including many Christians, have little reasoning for their claims except raw human emotion. That emotion, rather than Scripture, determines their beliefs. Because they deem such a doctrine unfair, they reason that God could not possibly punish the unsaved for all eternity.
Yet, even according to nothing more than human logic, hell makes sense. A person does something wrong. That person gets punished. An action is committed. That action bears consequences. That’s common sense, and as the Casey Anthony trial has proven, the majority of Americans still believe in that concept.
That is, as I said earlier, until you come to the topic of hell. Then everyone wants to believe that their actions will bear no consequences. Everyone wants earthly judges to declare punishment when it is due, but no one wants the Heavenly Judge to do the same. Everyone wants to see a guilty party pay for their crimes against society, but no one wants to pay for their own crimes against the Creator and Master of the universe.
It’s a double-standard that just doesn’t make sense. If we have any sense of justice, and if we believe that God has any sense of justice, we must heed the words of Scripture regarding the reality of hell.
“I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life. Those who are victorious will inherit all this, and I will be their God and they will be my children. But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars—they will be consigned to the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.” – Revelation 21:6-8