can i get any advice or suggestions on my approach?
My friend asked me out of curiosity "so if I don't believe in the Christian view of God, will I go to hell and why?"
This was my response. I'm just wondering if anyone can offer any further guidance on how I handled it?
"That depends on two things. 1) if you have truly accepted Jesus into your life once before, where you recognized that you were a sinner in need of saving, and that you believe in your whole heart that Jesus was the Son of God (and that He is God) and that his death paid for the full price of your sins and he rose from the grave on the third day, then you are saved. Jesus is described as the good shepherd, and promised that he would not lose one of his flock. If one of His sheep Strays too far away he promised to bring them back. This is what I believed happened with me. I accepted Him in middle school but had no one around me to support my new life change. Inwardly (my soul),I was born again in Christ, but outwardly (my flesh), I was easily manipulated and felt drawn away from this and so became Agnostic, then Buddhist. But looking back at everything I experienced ever since then, every choice and crazy twist and turn and how it all led me back to Jesus, I can see how He was guiding me all along back to him. I did a lot of growing up and had many "spiritual" transformations that helped me open my heart again so that I may accept His grace. Even when I was lost and didn't believe in Him, He never let me go. So if by chance you yourself have accepted Jesus and was born again in Him and the true gospel, then you may just be another sheep who Jesus is still working on gathering back to the herd.
2) if you have not accepted Him, and you were to die right now, then yes you would go to hell. And the reason is because of sin. God created man in His own image, and because of that they needed to abide by the laws that made a man righteous or holy. But because of satans deception in the garden of Eden, sin was created in man's heart. It's a curse that is punishable by death. From that point, all mankind was born into sin. We try our best not to do it but we do. Some just give in to their sins. Many in their pride believe that they are good people and never done wrong and so they deny the need for a savior, but none are righteous in spirit without Jesus. Before Jesus, people sought forgiveness from God through the sacrifice of a lamb. Blood was needed to cover our sins. This was only temporary though because it was only an animal. But God, out of His immeasurable love, sent His only begotten Son Jesus, who's God in the body of a man, lived a sinless life and died on the cross for a world who hated Him because His blood sacrifice would pay the debt for all the sins man has ever committed or ever will commit. His sacrifice and promise of eternal life is a free gift but it must be accepted whole heartedly. Without Jesus we cannot free ourselves in spirit from sins curse. Having faith in Him is essential to that and is very unique as well. So this is why someone would go to hell for not believing in Jesus. God does not wish for anyone to go to hell, that's why he sent Jesus. Not to condemn the world, but to save it. And in His love he tries very hard to reach out to everyone so that they may believe in Him and have eternal life. It is a choice however and many people have many reasons why they believe they don't need Jesus. Some reasons are influenced by Satan, others are just simple choices. But God loves everyone and will not give up on them. The choice however is still theirs to make. God doesn't condemn anyone to hell, sin does. And its our choice whether to believe what has been said and shown and open our hearts to Jesus' love and eternal gift, or to accept the fate sin gives us."
"Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends."
1 John 4:16
"And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him."