Q & R: But they’re going to hell!

Here’s the Q:

I enjoyed reading “Why Did Jesus, Moses, the Buddha, and Mohammed Cross the Road?: Christian Identity in a Multi-faith World” because I loved how it addressed that you can still be a Christian without acting hateful to non-Christians. However, what is still on my mind is how people of other faiths can be peaceful and lovable people but they are still going to hell because they don’t believe in Jesus. This bothers me a lot because even if you are a peaceful and lovable person, you’re still going to hell regardless. Can you shed some light on this? If you already have answered this question, can you send me a link to the answer? Thank you so much for your time!

Here’s the R:
Thanks for your question. I’m glad you got a main point of the book – “that you can still be a Christian without acting hateful to nonChristians.” But one of the other main points of the book is that the storyline many of us were taught – implying that the purpose of creation is to sort souls out into two destinations, heaven and hell – is not actually the biblical storyline. It is a distortion of the biblical story …
I try to make that clear in “The Doctrinal Challenge.”
The heaven-hell plot line is such a deeply-held assumption that for many Christians from conservative Catholic or Protestant backgrounds, questioning it is scary – sometimes too scary. But if you’re willing to open that question, two of my books will be helpful.
First, A New Kind of Christianity, and second, The Last Word and the Word After That.
And my upcoming book that will be released in about a month will give an overview of the whole biblical story without that assumption.
But even if you aren’t interested in grappling with that larger and deeper question, I’m glad that you got the point that you did: you can still be a Christian without acting hateful to nonChristians!