Arkansas Pastor Timothy Rogers while preaching at a funeral claimed that hell is a fairytale. Furthermore, the pastor then claimed that Christians have been sold a lie.
The thirty-eight-year-old pastor of Prince of Peace Church in Blytheville stated at the funeral of a young man: “Is he (the young man who passed) going to Hell? Did he accept Jesus as his …?’ See, y’all have been sold a lie. You’ve been bamboozled. All that stuff is a fairytale. To believe in Hell means you have to believe in Santa Claus. I don’t care how you cut [it]. Hell is an imaginary place. And I was told that if anything that does not have an explanation must be imagination.”
Continuing on the Pastor then said that Hell is what you create while describing that Hell is on Earth. In addition, the Pastor claimed that “When you’re dead, you’re done.”
Rogers was raised in the church, he is one of twenty-two siblings and son to a mother that is a prophetess and a father that was a Bishop. Rogers was raised in the church where he previously preached, before starting his Church; The Hope Church.
The Pastor, while describing his upbringing to the Christian Post, claims that during his upbringing it was more spiritual than anything; furthermore, “it was like a black Catholic kind of situation.”
Currently, Rogers is a nondenominational preacher, but he describes his preaching as “Baptiscostal.” Also, Rogers says that he is not nor has he ever been a part of a mainstream church.
Incredibly, the Pastor was going to preach about the text of Revelation, specifically in regards to the Pale Horse, for the funeral of the young man. But, the pastor realized that the Scripture would obligate him to preach on hell. Furthermore, instead of preaching that text, Rogers decided to preach that hell does not exist.
Rogers also claims that for some time now, he has been preaching privately that hell does not exist, and at the funeral, the pastor saw fit to make known his belief’s surrounding the mater.
Rogers, during the interview with CP, stated;
“Now, we know that I’m not the only one that talks like this. There are other people that talk like this. But the Church has a way of damaging them or relegating them to be a heretic or false teacher, but I just felt obligated to share my soul with those guys I knew were perishing right before my eyes. And I knew death was something they were not afraid of anymore. You could not scare them with death. You could not scare them with Hell. So I had been talking about what Hell really was. So I felt obligated to share with them what Hell really was — what they had created for themselves. So that’s how that all came about.”
Furthermore, when asked about his understanding of hell, he responded to CP;
“Well, what happened was I was just on a quest for God. I’m not the perfect guy. I’m not the scholar, I’m not the professor. I’m just a Bible student. I’m trying my best to understand the Bible in the way it was meant to be understood. So I study a few voices and so I began to study people like … Bishop Shelby Spong.
I began to study God from an open place, not an empty place. When I began to study these other voices I began to compare what I was given to many of the facts that a lot of the Church is not exposed to, not because these facts are not available. It is because we don’t have an appetite for these kind of [things].
So me arriving here comes from me studying God from not an empty place but an open place. And now when I look at Scripture, I guess God is delivering me from being what many in the Church have become. They’ve become literal thinkers. When we look at the Bible we forget that it’s allegorical, it’s symbolic, and full of parables. Not everything, but there’s a lot of that in there. And the Church has not been taught how to make the differences between what’s what.”
The pastor is claiming, like many New Age teachers, that the Bible should not be taken literally, and such has led him to the aforementioned conclusion that hell doesn’t exist. However, what the Pastor does not realize is, that by doing such, the reality of Jesus Christ can also be called into question. Reason being, that if you draw the allegorical line on portions scripture relating to Hell, where do you stop?
In Scripture there are parables, and some verses that should not be taken literally, instead they are symbolic; however, the majority of Scripture is literal. Hell according to the teachings of Jesus Christ is a literal place, not on Earth.
Revelation 20:15 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life, was cast into the lake of fire.
Pastor Rogers is not alone in his theology; rather, many preachers are either taught and or conclude that the Apostles writings are inconclusive and that they are not to be taken literally. However, again, if such is the case, where can a Christian draw the line on what is allegorical and what is literal?
Jesus Christ’s existence is factual, the teachings of Scripture are also among the leaflets of the Dead Sea Scrolls which were written thousands of years ago. Historical landmarks and places within the Bible are continually being uncovered day in and day out.
The Bible is clear, it is the Word of God, and if a preacher removes the authority of Scripture, the teachings of that preacher are not based on the Word of God; instead, they are based on man.