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So Glad for a Place Called Hell, A Jack Hyles-Loving Christian Says

jack hyles 1973
Jack Hyles, 1973

Repost from 2015. Edited, rewritten, and corrected. 

My posts on Jack Hyles, David Hyles, Jack Schaap, and the Independent Fundamentalist Baptist (IFB) church movement and its bombastic luminaries have wide circulation on the internet. With wide circulation comes an increase in comments from Baptist Fundamentalists who feel it is their duty to expose their ignorance for all to see. While they THINK they are putting the preacher-turned-atheist in his place, what they are really doing is illustrating the bankruptcy of the IFB church movement. Their emails, comments, blog posts, forum comments, and sermons are reminders that IFB preachers and church members are unable to embrace or accept any form of criticism. When you are certain you are right, it is hard to accept anything/anyone that says you are not right or that your thinking is flawed.

Several years ago, I received an email from a Jack Hyles-loving older woman in Florida. I assume she is older because she references a picture in the post from the early 1970s. Without further adieu, I present to you yet another reason why I am glad not to be a Christian:

Hi, I want to thank you for the picture of Dr. Hyles on your article. I am going to copy and print it for my husband who was in Hammond at the time of this photo. He dearly missed by us and we both think he was honor to be in his ministry for seven years. By the way, I am glad that you are an atheist and out of all church. Maybe you can join Madame Murray O Haire in Hell one day and you both can have a heyday criticizing each other. Good luck with the hereafter, there is one but you are going to in the dark place where no one can see your ugly face again. So glad for that place called HELL.

(All spelling and grammar errors in the original.)

If there was, in fact, a Hell, and there’s not, I too would be glad for its existence. Why would I want to spend eternity in Heaven with the likes of this woman? Long-time readers of this blog have read scores of comments and posted emails I have received from Evangelical and IFB critics. If these Christians are representative of the fine, upstanding folks found in Evangelical churches, why would any of us want to spend one moment in this life with them, let alone eternity? No thanks. Give me Hell. At least there I will have friends, people who loved and accepted me as I am. I hear the weather in Hell is awesome, and the parties are out of this world. Hmm . . . partying on a beach with friends or spending every hour of every day worshiping a narcissistic deity with people who spent their lives on earth attacking and judging anyone and everyone who didn’t worship their God. Which should I choose?

I have been blogging since 2007. I was a Christian when I first started blogging, deconverted in 2008, and have been drawing the ire of Evangelical Christians ever since. Thousands and thousands and thousands of Christians have visited this site. Some of them, particularly Fundamentalists, attempt to set me straight or to win me back to Jesus. When Evangelicals fail in their endeavors, it is not uncommon for them to turn on me, often acting in ways that are decidedly un-Christian. For the life of me, I don’t understand why some Evangelicals act this way. What do they hope to accomplish? Do they think that their atrocious behavior will make Christianity more appealing to me and the unwashed, uncircumcised Philistines who read this blog? Or maybe they write us off, and in doing so show their true nature. All I know is this: Evangelicals who behave this way have done more than I ever could to advance the cause of atheism.

Keep preaching the “word” Evangelicals. We are hearing you loud and clear.

Bruce Gerencser, 66, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 45 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

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    Do all of them destroy the English language? I make no claims of a grammar police but damn! Do they read what they write? I’ve been having a fun time with one of these bullheaded IFB’ers and I realized I was arguing with a child. OMG, I verbally molested a “man child!”

    I don’t even do religion. I don’t talk about it; do not care about it; do not want anything to do with any theology. I don’t have to understand everything. I understand enough to know what I was born into is a crock of malarkey!

    I hope there is a hell because I know a lot of preachers who deserve nothing less. Sadly, I can’t think magically.

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    The appalling grammar and general lack of literacy skills seems symptomatic of the lack of education that exists in fundamentalist circles.

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    I too have left the IFb CULT. Their wrongs, rapes & mind games with children is simply unforgivable. They put themselves on a pedestal, where Christ belongs. The rules are only meant for others and not themselves. Since they have made themselves god, rules do not apply to them. The rules are a tool of control & part of the mind games they play.

    It makes me sick to read a letter like this. So typical, though, of their mentality. But you attacked their “god”, so they believe what they were taught. They can’t think for themselves or even read the Bible on their own intellect. I’m so sorry that she wrote this letter. God loves you whether or not you believe Him.

    After I left FBCH in 1997, I did not believe there was a Church for me. I was still brain washed & did not attend another Church for many years. I found a good Church, though. I didn’t know the Pastors name for 7 years. But i knew how much God loved me. I did not know how many sermons the Pastor preached, but i knew about Jesus.

    I am so grateful that you make public the truth. That is something that hurts the IFB cult. They don’t like truth. I believe what you are doing, is putting light on the darkness in this World. Thank you for reconciling what is right & what is truly wrong.

    • Avatar
      Brian Vanderlip

      Sindyana, your praise in this matter is misplaced. The blog writer does no believe in your fantasy Jesus and has long departed from the delusion/faith. You state your case like many other believers, stating that THEY do it wrong and don’t know the real McCoy like you apparently do! It’s a lot of malarkey around here so don’t bother trying to explain the grateful heart you own. But have a nice day, keep social distancing, be calm, and be safe.

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    I'll take a pass

    Look at the bright side, if you are more of a Calvinist than a Arminist, you will still go heaven. I don’t ridicule fundamentalists because I believe they at least have the consistency of the Bible as their core. I wouldn’t call IFBs a cult. They are true Christians. All the other wishy washy Christians basically make it fit to what they want to believe. Why bother. If you are going to believe in the God of the Bible, then you need to believe in the rest of the book. Ergo, the concept of good Christians gays is clearly a contradiction. Hence, it’s best to just walk away.

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    Aw, bless her little heart wishing you a place in hell……

    Anyone who delights in the prospect of another human suffering torment in hell for eternity just for believing the “wrong thing” is a morally corrupt, mean-spirited person.

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    What a nasty old hag. It must suck to be her.

    When my husband died 29 yrs ago, my evangelical neighbor made it a point to come over and quiz me on where he was. Long story short, because he was Catholic and a heathen, she wanted me to become saved so I could save him because he was in HELLLLL! I told her no. I’m not doing it. It wasn’t up to me to save him. He was on his own to save himself.

    Her jaw dropped. She kept pushing and I kept saying No. No. No. Of course, she thought I was going to be vulnerable and easily terrified for his eternal soul. I wasn’t.

    She tried to convert me for at least 26 years. She just could not understand why I didn’t want to take Jesus as my personal savior and be washed in the blood of the lamb. I guess I will always be her greatest failure.
    Ugh. Goddamn blood/death cult.

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    Fundy for most of my life, I hid many dissonances before finally confronting them and de-converting. One was what did it actually mean that a soul ‘burned in hell for eternity’? And I hated the belief among some of my fellow-x-tians that those in heaven watched – and gloated – over this spectacle. Reading now of Hyles, Steve Anderson et al, I’m sure this is their position..their arrogance and spite and sheer all-round nastiness is stunning.

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    it amazes me that so many Evangelical/Fundamentalist Christians consider it their major mission in life to save souls from Hell, yet are so ready to condemn anybody who doesn’t want to convert to their particular brand of worship straight to the place from which they are supposed dedicate their lives to rescuing them. When these folks get frustrated, they get nasty.

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    Tim White

    I would disagree with only one thing in your article. You say that you began blogging when you were a Christian, then de-converted; but that is not true. You have never been a Christian.

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      Bruce Gerencser

      sigh I have never heard this before, Tim. sigh Let’s see: your peculiar interpretation of the Bible trumps what I know and my personal experiences. You refuse to accept my story at face value. Why is that? I suspect that the real issue has to do with you, not me.

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      Ah, that convenient (and mendacious) excuse believers use to erase the fear that someday they will lose their faith too. Tim, I hate to break this to you, but your faith is doomed anyway no matter what you do. Dead people don’t believe anything at all, so you only have till the end of your days on Earth to enjoy it.

      Inasmuch as one can enjoy worshipping a human sacrifice and sucking up to a cosmic tyrant, that is… 😀

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    Yulya Sevelova

    As to this woman in Florida, I’d love to know who she is. I can never get this Hyles- worship that people from IFB churches engage in. Clearly Hyles didn’t believe what he preached. Not really, or he wouldn’t have done the things he did. Ditto for David, his son. David could be found guilty of murder and child abuse one day. Then what will his followers say ?

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