A Contradiction at the Heart of the System

The Christian doctrine of salvation states we must believe in Jesus and his death for our sins to be saved and go to heaven.  In this blog and in my book we have asked three questions about this doctrine.  One of these questions is:

  • What kind of a God would condemn to hell those who have never heard of Jesus or who have a distorted view of Jesus?

This question has been asked for centuries but no one has developed answers that are logical and Biblical based.  Having no answer for this question creates serious problems concerning the validity of our Christian faith.  As David Trueblood, a Christian philosopher, states:

What kind of God is it who consigns men and women and children to eternal torment, in spite of the fact that they have not had even a remote chance of knowing the saving truth?. . .A God who would thus play favorites with His children, condemning some to eternal separation from Himself while admitting others, and distinguishing between them wholly or chiefly on the basis of the accidents of history or geography, over which they had no control, would be more devil than God.  In any case He would not even remotely resemble Jesus Christ, and thus there is a contradiction at the heart of the system. [1]

If we have a contradiction at the heart of our faith, how can we justify adhering to our faith?  Now I understand that we are finite and will not understand why God does everything the way he does.  As a result we will need to take some things on faith.  But I have a hard time believing that God would place a contradiction at the heart of our faith and expect us to essentially ignore it.

There must be a solution to this problem.  So why have we not resolved it?


[1]   David Elton Trueblood, Philosophy of Religion, New York:  Harper & Row, 1957, pp. 221-222.

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