Do you believe in an afterlife?
Most common responses: No. There is no evidence. I can’t comprehend that or fathom the idea of there being an afterlife. I want to believe in heaven. I believe in heaven but don’t believe in hell. I believe in reincarnation. Yes, I believe in heaven and hell.
Observations: The most interesting responses I receive on this topic are not usually from skeptics. They are from people who profess to believe in the God of the Bible and heaven and hell. Typically, if someone says they believe, I'll ask a follow up question. I'll say something like how does someone get to one and avoid the other? One individual I was conversing with simply said that they didn't know. I appreciated their honesty. When I asked if they thought it was a question worth pursuing, they said nonchalantly - no not really.
I’ve noticed a common trend. First, people need/want evidence. Second, people have a hard time believing in anything they can’t comprehend. I understand and respect those positions and am the same way myself. That's why I did some research and encourage you to do the same. One suggestion though - throw out your pre-conceived notions and opinions and follow the evidence wherever it leads. The way I figure it, if Christianity is true, there are eternal implications. Not only for us, but the eternity of the people we know and love is at stake too. In other words, I think the question is worth pursuing.
My response: Yes, I believe in an afterlife. I believe that the Bible is the inspired word of God and thus agree that there is a heaven and a hell. I believe that hell is hot and heaven is my home. I believe there is only one way in and it's Jesus. (John 14:6, John 3:16)
In summary, there are all sorts of things my mind can't grasp: the immensity of the universe, the speed of light, the evil and horror of the holocaust, the complexity of DNA, how someone could believe heaven and hell exist but not question how to enter one and avoid the other, etc. But, just because I can't comprehend those things doesn't mean they don't exist or are untrue. Just because you can't fathom life after death doesn't mean it's beyond the realm of possibility.
“People almost invariably arrive at their beliefs not on the basis of proof but on the basis of what they find attractive.”
― Blaise Pascal
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