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There Are No Flowers in Hell, a Local Man Tells Me

tulips 2015
Tulips, yard of Bruce and Polly Gerencser, 2015

In response to a letter I wrote to the editor of the Defiance Crescent-News, an elderly local Christian sent me the following letter:


Please reconsider. Even if we choose to believe there is no hell, doesn’t make it so. I saw the pictures of flowers you posted and it showed how you enjoyed them. In Hell, you will never be able to enjoy anything. There will only be torment forever and ever. I don’t want anyone to go to that place and certainly God does not want that for you either. When you truly come to know Jesus, you will gladly and willingly surrender your all to Him and following His commands will not be burdensome to you. It will just flow out of your heart of love for Him.

Perhaps you were a religious person who never truly had a relationship with Him. I beg you – please reconsider before it is too late for you. He loves you so much. The precious blood of Jesus was shed for you, don’t let it be in vain. What about your wife, children, and grandchildren? If you die and go to hell, you will regret that you had a part in taking them there with you, and you will want someone to go and tell them the truth.

Please reconsider. Count the cost. This life is so short, but eternity is forever. Wouldn’t it be better to endure this life and all it’s problems with Jesus, than to be in hell for eternity and have to bow down to the authority of God anyway? I pray God give revelation to you and your family regarding heaven and hell. I say all this in the love of Jesus. I know this will be considered as evangelism, but please read it. I pray you make the right decision.

Let me summarize. Why should I become a Christian?

  • I love flowers and there are no flowers in hell.
  • Because I was a religious person who never really knew Jesus.
  • So I don’t have to be accountable for my wife, children, and grandchildren going to hell.

Is this the best that Christianity offers theses days? As the writer said:

Wouldn’t it be better to endure this life and all it’s problems with Jesus, than to be in hell for eternity and have to bow down to the authority of God anyway?

My answer is no. I would rather endure this life and all its problems without a deity, knowing that when I draw my last breath I have lived my life well and that I can, with peaceful assurance say, this is enough.

I have no doubt that the person who sent me this is sincerely concerned for my spiritual welfare. Been there, done that. Christians need to understand that I am an intractable atheist. Arguments like those found in this letter are shallow, contradictory, and easily refuted.  Better for this man to seek after those who have some interest in the Christian message . There is nothing a Christian can say to me that is going to make me suddenly see the error of my way and cause me to repent. Experts have tried, but here I am, wallowing in my depravity, enjoying my last few moments on earth before I step out into eternity and join Hitch in hell.


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    This preaching just makes me tired. Really, really tired. I remember the last time my mother was going on and on like this. Not at me directly, but dominating the freaking Thanksgiving dinner all because she thought my SIL had said something ‘blasphemous.’ She hadn’t, of course, but talking around my mother was like walking through a field of landmines. I remember just looking out of the window and realizing it would always be this way, that this gathering will always be something I’ll dread and wondering when or if I would ever be able to enjoy the holidays the way I wanted them to be.

    Well, that was years ago. We’ve spent last few Christmases in Victoria, BC. No preaching. No walking on eggshells. Why, it’s almost . . . heavenly!

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    Bruce, please do the sensible thing. Any sensible person knows the difference between hell and heaven. Don’t you want to have eternal flowers and gold avenues to promenade in your speedo or whatever the flock is sporting? Sheesh… You were never chosen, that must be it and all that churching and real college religio-ed was a Devil’s trick. That Beezle is a terrible tricky type and he sure got you! Thank goodness me and Franklin Graham didn’t go to your church where the devil was fooling the whole bunch of you. I say good riddance to people who don’t know enough to choose heaven when God went to all the trouble to create ultimate pain and suffering so he could kill his own son for you…. How could things be any clearer than that? This is your last chance! Well, maybe, could be but I’m not God like you seem to think you are, rejecting what any halfway sensible knows. Wait now, you like baseball, right? Well there is NO BASEBALL IN HELL., Mr. G. You’d better buck-up and do the RIGHT THING! Strike two!

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    I continue to be astonished that a person intelligent enough to be able to string together the words contained in this letter in an overtly comprehensible form, can actually think that there is even a germ of logic in its content. The irony is that to produce an environment of the nature the writer describes would render god an idiot of the first order.

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    This is so awfully sad. I, too, have been that person, pleading for another’s acceptance of Christ in order to spare them a tormented eternity. I believed it. It hurt to know that so many wonderfully nice and pleasant people were simply lost, and doomed for an eternity in hellfire.
    The belief, this conviction, was drilled into me from the cradle. The brainwashing is strong. It oozes into everything, and even when, decades later, I realize it’s bullshit, sitting through an alter call makes me sick and question all my logic. It’s an insidious, gripping, fear that must be purged again with logic. GADS!
    I feel sorry for the poor chap who wrote this, and hope this person finds out they don’t have to live this way.

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