Q. The traditional view of Hell is the only “truth” in life I hate. Being separated from God forever and all he is and all he made is one thing – being trapped for eternity with your own emotional feeling of grief and sadness because of regret and all that goes with sin is also another thing I can grasp – but being tortured in physical, excruciating pain is quite another. Why did God have to make it physically painful? Isn’t separation from faith, hope and love and beauty enough?
A. You’re speaking from the perception of a believer. We think being separated from God would be an awful thing, but how would an unbeliever feel about it? After all, it’s what they’ve always wanted.
Then there’s the fact that in the spiritual world, beings seem to be able to recognize each other even though we can’t see them. Maybe they have some kind of other dimensional tangible nature we are not aware of. Remember, Paul said you can’t tell how the flower will appear just by looking at the seed (1 Cor. 15:37-39). He said it will be that way for us in the resurrection. Maybe it’s the same for unbelievers.
To me it looks like unbelievers will experience the polar opposite of what we’ll experience. We won’t just be in the presence of God. We’ll have a tangible nature that’s different from the one we have now and we’ll experience unimaginable peace and joy for eternity. What would the opposite of that be?