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Publication Date: 2011
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Love Wins, the controversial bestselling book by Rob Bell, attempted to answer this question, which troubles nonbelievers and believers alike. Because Bell challenged traditional, orthodox Christian views of hell and the afterlife, many were left asking: "Are his ideas as reliable and hopeful as they sound? What does the Bible really say about hell?"
In Hell, Rob Bell, and What Happens When People Die, Bobby Conway, a recognized authority on Christian apologetics, brings clarity to these serious life and death issues. "Love really does win," according to Conway, "but its through the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ."
Based on a thorough examination of Scripture and a careful analysis of Rob Bells propositions, Conway delivers a compelling and concise explanation of hell, the afterlife, and a loving God. The conclusion: Everyone who believes and trusts in Christ has no need to fear the anguish of hell but can confidently anticipate the eternal joy of heaven.
Bobby Conway is the lead pastor of Life Fellowship Church in Charlotte, North Carolina, and the founder and host of the web-ministry the "One Minute Apologist" (www.youtube.com/oneminuteapologist). Bobbys advanced degrees in theology and apologetics (ThM, Dallas Seminary and DMin, Southern Evangelical Seminary) equip him to provide insightful answers on issues of biblical faith. Bobby and his wife, Heather, are the parents of two children, Dawson and Haley.
"Bell on hell doesnt ring the bell. Rather, Bobby Conway shows the right way. Jesus is the only way, and He believed heaven was the narrow way. God is the loving way, but He cant force a rebel to go another way. It is more loving to allow them to go their own way. So, Gods love necessitates the truth about hell and tolerates the error of Bell."
Dr. Norman L. Geisler, Distinguished Professor of Apologetics at Veritas Evangelical Seminary (www.VeritasSeminary.com), Murrieta, CA, and author of over 70 books, including the best-selling work If God, Why Evil? (Bethany, 2011)
"In Love Wins, Rob Bell challenges the traditional Christian view of hell and who goes there. Unfortunately, Bells handling of the biblical texts is neither careful nor equitable. Readers who wish to be more informed will appreciate this critique by Bobby Conway, a trusted Christian apologist."
Michael Licona, author, speaker, and Apologetics Coordinator at the North American Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention
"At a time when the truths of Scripture are ignored, revised, and openly denied by various leaders, the ministry of Bobby Conway is a breath of fresh air. With meticulous scholarship and excellence in presentation, he tackles tough subjects in ways that are understandable, relevant, and applicable to everyday life. Conway is doing the important work of standing up against the recent challenges to Christian orthodoxy (such as in his critique of Rob Bells denial of hell). With plain truth and no spin, Conway is introducing a new generation to true Christianity."
Alex McFarland, author of The 10 Most Common Objections to Christianity and host of TVs Sound Rezn and Explore the Word radio
"Hell has been a hot topic lately, and whether you believe in the reality of hell or not, this book deserves a fair hearing. Theres much pressure to abandon the reality of hell and embrace the idea that eventually everyone will be saved. But as Bobby Conway points out, this was not the view held by Jesus. We may not like hell, but can we dismiss something Jesus warned people about? Conway says no, and I agree."
Sean McDowell, educator, speaker, and author of Apologetics for a New Generation
Rev BobNorth olmsted, OHAge: 45-54Gender: male3 Stars Out Of 5This product gives the Orthodox view on HellOctober 30, 2011Rev BobNorth olmsted, OHAge: 45-54Gender: maleQuality: 3Value: 3Meets Expectations: 3This book is an answer to Rob Bell's book Love Wins. Bobby Conway right away says he is not attacking Rob Bell and has nothing against him on a personal level, he is defending the the Orthodox Christianity's view of Hell. Conway gives Bell props on some valid points in his book Love Wins, including his view that Christianity isn't about "getting in" or just "getting there". Conway believes what we do here on earth will have an impact on our afterlife as well.
Conway tells you in his book that he was compelled to write it because, "Love Wins ultimately loses because it gives the wrong answers." (pg.15).
Conway divides his book into 10 chapters staring with, "The fuss about Love Wins" and ends with, "Jesus Wins!". Through each chapter He makes his case on the Orthodox Christen view of hell and how Rob Bell got it wrong in Love Wins.
Conway gives his personal account of how he became saved, after hearing an evangelist named Greg Laurie at Calvary chapel. Before giving himself to Jesus to him Christmas was about Santa and Easter was about bunnies (how many of you right now relate to that analogy over the truth).
In his book Conway uses the Barna Poll as a statistical thumbprint on America's views on religious questions. The Barna Group is a highly respected agency that has been around since 1984 and is the leading research organization focused on faith and culture. One of the polls that Conway uses is that 1 percent of Americans think they are going to hell. Conway uses Jesus' parables and the Book of Revelation to make his point that hell is real and we all deserve to go there. Our escape clause (so to speak) is in the acceptance of Jesus as our Savior. In simple words, hell is deserved (sins) by all but heaven is ours for the asking (grace).
One of Conway's most poignant quotes, "Again, hell is God's idea. None other than Jesus gave us many of the details and images of hell. Other New Testament writers rounded out the picture of hell. It's not a pretty one.
When we who call ourselves Christians talk about hell, our demeanor and our words should express humble brokenheartedness, with no hint of arrogance."
Conway sums up Rob Bell's vision of hell this way, "Bell manipulates the temperature of hell through a convoluted use of Scripture as he repaints the fate of lost humanity. Like a child making a wish before he blows out the candles on his birthday cake, Bell makes his wish- "A hell-less humanity" - then blows out the flames of hell." (pg27).
Basically this book is a rebuttal to Rob Bell's book Love Wins. Does Conway do a good job in his rebuttal (or hell debate)? You be the judge! Read both books then use the one gift God gives us all, "free will", to make our own choices. I can tell you this I will walk away from this reading with a better understanding of the Orthodox view on hell than I had before.
Note: I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.
bookwomanjoanOak Harbor, WAAge: 55-65Gender: female4 Stars Out Of 5specific answer to bell's book, not a general workAugust 22, 2011bookwomanjoanOak Harbor, WAAge: 55-65Gender: femaleQuality: 4Value: 4Meets Expectations: 4Rob Bell raised concern for many evangelicals in his book Love Wins.
Conway wants us to know "Hell is a real place." Hell is the fate of much of humanity, he says. "The most unloving thing I could do is hold out false hope or go mute about this awful, endless reality."
Conway reminds us that for two thousand years "Christians have understood eternity in terms of heaven and hell." "Bell's book challenged the traditional, orthodox view of what happens when people die." Bell held out the promise of postmortem salvation. Bell's message is "fatally flawed," Conway says.
Hell was not a theologian's idea. "We learn more about hell from Jesus than from any other source in the Bible." Jesus said more about hell than He did heaven. If we are going to take Jesus at His word, how can we not accept the reality of hell? Hell is God's idea, Conway says.
He admits that hell is a topic that makes people uncomfortable. He reminds us, "When something in Scripture is distasteful to us, we must realize that we, not God, are the problem." He realizes the truth is hard to digest. "We must take it by faith that one day we will see as God sees."
Conway critiques many of the statements Bell made about hell in his book, showing how they differ from what is found in the Bible. He suggest Bell commits the interpretive fallacy known as eisegesis (reading into the Bible one's own ideas). He identifies the themes that seem to emerge in Bell's book (postmortem salvation, nuanced purgatory, inclusivism) and how they contradict Scripture.
"But Love Wins, because of its confusing and sometimes dangerous message, will potentially deceive countless thousands who would have been much better off just hearing what the Bible actually has to say."
After emphasizing the reality of hell, Conway reminds his readers that it need not be their fate. He presents the gospel and the opportunity to escape that judgment of God.
At the end of each chapter are additional video resources.
This book is in ebook form only.
I received an egalley of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review.
Holly SmithCharleston, SC3 Stars Out Of 5Very informativeAugust 9, 2011Holly SmithCharleston, SCQuality: 3Value: 3Meets Expectations: 3Bobby Conway, a Christian apologist, takes Rob Bell's views, along with the scriptures Bell twisted to derive those views, and shows readers not only a strong defense for the orthodox view of Hell, but the fatal way Rob Bell easily manipulates in his book, Love Wins. Divided into three sections, Bobby Conway engages readers in three main issues: Hell, Rob Bell, and what happens when people die. Thus we have his release of Hell, Rob Bell, and What Happens When People Die.
When I picked up this book, I didn't know what to expect. While Rob Bell's recent views upset me, I decided ahead of time I would not purchase Bell's book. I did, however, keep a close eye on the reviews and buzz discussed in Love Wins. Lucky for me, Bobby Conway presents his material in such a way that one does not have to have read Bell's book to follow along with Hell, Rob Bell, and What Happens When People Die. In addition, the arguments and thoroughly researched scriptures Bobby Conway presents are strong and convincing to defend orthodox Christianity.
The second part of the book is more or less a giant review on Rob Bell's book. While it may seem overly critical this part of the book is much needed as Conway points out the flaws in Bell's arguments, leaving behind a trail of Scripture that leaves no room for doubt in reader's minds that Bell has not only left Orthodox Christianity behind, but that there is no room in Orthodox Christianity (or Christianity at all, for that matter) to embrace Bell's views.
When Love Wins first released, I followed many bloggers who reviewed the book. Most of them took Conway's position and showed the flaws in Bell's arguments. Many of the arguments those reviewers presented are the same ones Bobby Conway presents. For that very reason, I didn't find this book particularly helpful. However, if you didn't follow in-depth reviews that presented arguments against Bell's theology, then this book is definitely for you. He also provides resources to additional information on certain topics, as well, which I did find very helpful.
As a book, I can't recommend one higher than this one to counter Bell's views. This book is great for churches and small bible study groups as well. I believe it's important for every Christian to study this issue so we can be prepared to counter the theology Bell has presented to our generation. Hell, Rob Bell, and What Happens When People Die will be able to help you present evidence to the new ideas floating around.
**I received a complimentary copy of this book provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Dakota LMissouri, USAAge: 18-24Gender: male4 Stars Out Of 5A Valuable & Convenient ResourceJuly 30, 2011Dakota LMissouri, USAAge: 18-24Gender: maleQuality: 4Value: 4Meets Expectations: 5If you're reading this review, then kudos to you for even clicking on something you knew would be about hell. Most people prefer to spend their free time doing something other than reading about eternal punishment on the Internet, but you really have to admit that it pays to be prepared if there's even a slight chance this terrible place exists.
In his book "Hell, Rob Bell, and What Happens When People Die" Bobby Conway does a great job of clearing up the recent confusion in regard to hell, while also making an effort to show us the one and only way to heaven: Jesus Christ. While there were a few things I think should've been included in chapter 9 on how to be saved (a few more words on repentance and perseverance, perhaps?), I still feel comfortable recommending this book to you as a great resource on the concepts of eternity, heaven, hell, and as Rob Bell put it, "the fate of every person who ever lived."
In addition to this volume's convenient length of only 77 pages, I also noted a significant reliance on God's Word as the backbone for Conway's arguments - a huge plus, to say the least. Rather than inserting a passage of Scripture here and there merely to give his work a level of credibility among Christians, he seems to be more concerned with the Bible's credibility than his own and thus points his readers to an infallible source of truth rather than his own potentially fallible interpretation of it. Just to give you an idea of what I'm talking about, here's an excerpt taken from page 35:
"Remember, our first response always should be "What does the Bible say?" not "What do I want it to say?" We don't have the right to change it to fit our comfort level. Ultimately, we aren't in charge of history, hell, or anything for that matter. God's in charge, and He decides what's just and what isn't. If we are wise, we will adjust our ideas about heaven and hell to align with His."
Basically, this book explains the reality of hell, the eternality of hell, the reason for hell, and the escape from hell. If you are at all curious about these issues, or perhaps just looking for a more efficient way of explaining them to others, then I highly recommend this book and give it 4 out of 5 stars.
Disclaimer: I received this book free of charge from Multnomah Books in exchange for my unbiased review. All expressed opinions are uncensored and uninfluenced by them.
IntelMinBelleville, ILAge: 35-44Gender: male4 Stars Out Of 5Valuable Response to Love Wins - Excellent BookJuly 28, 2011IntelMinBelleville, ILAge: 35-44Gender: maleQuality: 4Value: 5Meets Expectations: 4Pastor and author Dr. Bobby Conway, in his latest book Hell, Rob Bell, and What Happens When People Die, provides the reader with a hard-hitting yet irenic discussion of the view of heaven/hell presented by Rob Bell compared to that actually revealed in Scripture. Rob Bell's book Love Wins has sparked a maelstrom of sorts among scholars and laymen alike about how matters of eternal importance. Bell clearly avers what Conway saliently labels as a "postmortem, nuanced-purgatorial, inclusivist view of eternal destiny." Such a perspective has left many questioning not just the traditional orthodox viewpoint on matters such as heaven, hell, and salvation, but more destructively, many are questioning the words of Scripture itself. It is this broiling cauldron of confusion to which Conway efforts to engage.
Conway cogently compares and contrasts Bell's statements in Love Wins with what Scripture actually says. Bell habitually "commits the interpretive fallacy known as eisegesis (reading into the Bible one's own ideas) instead of remaining committed to exegesis (drawing out of the Bible)." Such an approach is dangerous for many reasons, most notably it twists God's word to fit current cultural beliefs rather than the timeless truths God has revealed in his word. Conway expertly draws from Scripture to counteract the deleterious impact of Bell's haphazard hermeneutics reminding the reader that Bell is actually twisting the words of Jesus himself. The very concept of a post-mortem salvation has no place in the pages of Scripture and clearly contradicts numerous scriptures to include Hebrews 9:27 which states, "It is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment." Such a clear cut scripture leaves one scratching their head in an effort to ponder where Bell derives his "postmortem, nuanced-purgatorial, inclusivist view of eternal destiny" from. It is obvious as Conway rightly notes, "Bell's interpretive grid seems based in a stream of consciousness rather than in any foundational methods of biblical study."
While Conway's work is a mere 58 pages in length of actual discussion, its brevity is more than made up for with its honest, biblically based approach to one of today's challenging issues of conversation for the church. There are certainly more lengthy tomes available on the market that can provide the expositor of scripture with more in-depth analysis of this subject matter. With that said, Conway's effort does not in any way lack in scriptural insight, purpose, or exegetical rigor. This book is in keeping with Conway's One Minute Apologist website and YouTube video collection in that it provides those who interact with his works a terse, yet solid overview of the topic at hand. To this end, Hell, Rob Bell, and What Happens When People Die should be a part of every believer's toolbox, especially if you interact with those who have been influenced by Rob Bell's borderline heretical book. Conway clears up the muddied waters on heaven, hell, and salvation thankfully reorienting the discussion back where it belongs_.in the pages of Scripture. Let us remember this brilliant statement by Dr. Bobby Conway as we interact with a world spinning out of control: "In a culture that has lost sight of the urgent message of Jesus Christ, we must follow in the footsteps of blood-spilling martyrs and get the message out concerning the fate of humanity at all costs." We must never forget that Jesus wins and God's justice will prevail!
I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."