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Why is John Shore Hating on Francis Chan’s Response to Rob Bell?

“All Christians agree that if you are a Christian — no matter what you believe about hell — you go to heaven, and not hell, when you die.”

These and other statements were taken from an article written by a HuffintonPost writer, John Shore. The basis of his criticism comes from the promotion video about Francis Chan’s new book Erasing Hell: What God Said About Eternity, and the Things We made Up.

The book is a response to Rob Bell’s book, which sparked debate about hell and universalism. Chan made it clear in the video that he was “concerned” about the “carelessness” tone over hell.

Shore does not sugar coat any of his feelings towards Chan and even shows his disdain for all Christians who talk about hell by writing “evangelicals should shut-up about hell.”

His main argument for blasting Chan and other evangelicals is that they are doing the exact opposite of what an evangelist should do.

In Shore’s theology, hell is not necessary for salvation and does more wrong then right to preach about it to non believers, because frankly it may offend or give them goose bumps.

Shore says the best thing evangelicals can do is “either radically rethink their concept of hell, or, at the very least, stop preaching about it.”

From my perspective, it was alarming and sad to see a writer from HuffintonPost blast Chan based on a promotional video of his book.

The article seems to point out the flaws of the doctrine of hell and how the talk of an eternal punishment take away from the knowledge of a “loving and all-powerful” God. 

However, if Shore really wanted to debunk Chan’s beliefs, he should have listened to the countless sermons Chan has preached on love and maybe taken a flip through his first book Crazy Love: Overwhelmed By A Relentless God.

Chan is just the person to refute Bell and regardless if the book is co-authored by another writer, what matters most is that the response will be guided by truth and a loving spirit.

I would love to hear any feedback and any comments below are greatly appreciated. Thanks.

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6 comments on “Why is John Shore Hating on Francis Chan’s Response to Rob Bell?

  1. […] 6. Why is John Shore Hating on Francis Chan’s Response to Rob Bell? […]

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  2. Response 
    Shore: As you are uncertain of Chan’s motives for the book and promo video, I am too uncertain of why your blog was written. Yes, you may be trying to back up Bell (maybe but I don’t know) but in the same light I could be trying to back up Chan. Also, in further inspection I think you might be right that it was a little odd that Chan did not mention a co-author. However, the purpose of a promo video (I’ve done PR work before) is to promote the book and its central message. Again, I’m not sure why the other writer was left out (maybe he didn’t want the spotlight) who knows. But I think the central point of the promo was hell and Chan did a good job presenting a biblical view of it. To undermine this by saying Chan is prideful or cunning only reveals that there’s a deeper issue you have with Chan (maybe I could be wrong). Ultimately, I’m glad I could write how I feel about the subject and get some awesome feedback and differing views. Thanks. 

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  3. Ric Booth, You make a great point that it seems a compulsion of Chan to come out of nowhere and start writing about hell fire and brimstone. And this may be valid if Chan was merely doing this, but I think he’s had a clean track record concerning the “great commission.” If he feels other Christians, like Bell, are undermining the gospel then I understand completely why he would want to write about hell. Jesus said go forth and make disciples of all nations, tribes and tongues, but he didn’t stop there. He also, like a boss, said to obey everything he commanded. It’s doing a huge disservice to unbelievers if Chan only gives heaven without hell. But like Chan was saying believers have to be careful about the way we use and talk about hell.

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  4. Mark, I’ve read Chan’s book Crazy Love. Loved it. I’ve been to hear him speak and have a few DVDs to boot.

    But concerning his ridiculous compulsion to preach hellfire and brimstone, I am simply baffled. Shore is right, this has the exact opposite effect of Chan’s stated primary mission (the great commission). When has the world *ever* needed more hellfire and brimstone? What possible good is this exercise?

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  5. Here, again (by way of a comment to your defense of Chan on my blog), is why I fail to understand how anyone can take Chan — or at the very least this video — at all seriously:

    http://johnshore.com/2011/05/21/why-preaching-hell-sends-people-to-hell/comment-page-2/#comment-66606

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  6. It is great seeing and hearing from Chan again. Can’t wait to get my hands on his new book.
    I love the way he confessed to the sin of pride. It is a sin that wants to master us all.
    I also appreciate how he gently approached the controversy over Rob Bell’s stand on hell.
    Contrary to Bell everyone does not go to heaven because God is a God of love. God is also
    full of justice and punishes evil doers as it is written in Revelation that the LORD will send
    evil doers to the lake of fire and sulfur.

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