The History of Hell with John Roller

February 22, 2009

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Dr. John Roller has served as an interdenominational youth evangelist, as a pastor of churches in Illinois, Florida, and West Virginia. He has a Ph.D. from Bethany Theological Seminary in Dothan, Alabama, where he specialized in tracing the early christian history on the afterlife and the doctrine of hell. Dr. Roller has written an e-book, The Doctrine of Immortality in the Early Church, which is available for free upon request by emailing him (johnroller@faithbiblechristian.com). More information about John Roller can be found at www.JohnRoller.com.

In this show John articulates with lucidity the shift from the biblical notion of annihilation to the pagan mythology of eternal torment. From the earliest days Christians believed that at death one was asleep until the resurrection when Jesus returned to establish his kingdom. Only then would hell exist as a means by which God would destroy the wicked and rebellious. However, through the late second century influence of Athenagoras of Athens, Clement of Alexandria, and Tertullian of Carthage, the hell doctrine combined withe the Greek philosophic idea that souls are immortal into the grotesque abomination that is so popular today. Join us as we delve into the history of hell to document the remarkable shift that occurred in the second century.