It’s been a long time since I have thought as much about hell as I have been doing over the past month or so. In fact, I haven’t ruminated so much about hell since those fire and brimstone two-week parish missions of my youth.

The first week of the mission left no doubt but that all testosteronally driven young bucks like me were already booked into the deepest depths of hell. The two priests played ‘bad-cop … good cop’ with us and the nicer priest gave us hope of avoiding the drop over the course of the second week.

Hell has been around for a very long time, but in recent years the numbers who believe in its existence has plummeted. But let the word go out from the pulpit of YCBS that we need hell – and we need it now like seldom before.

Nowadays it seems as if nobody can ever be wrong. Rules – whether they be Church or State don’t matter and every individual has the right to do as they please. In the words of the old hippy motto; ‘if it feels good do it!’

Many Christians do put forward a reasonable argument against the existence of hell. Their principle reservation about the place is that they cannot reconcile the idea of a just and loving God condemning billions of people to eternal punishment and torment in a fiery hell. This would make God a bloodthirsty vengeful monster, according to some believers. Whatever is your own view on the matter, dear reader, please stay with us for another few moments.

So why has this humble scribe being dwelling on hell’s dungeon for the past month, I hear you ask. The short answer to that one is Vladimir Putin. There has to be a hell for Putin and I wonder if there is any corner of hell hot enough for this sadistic Russian monster? The indiscriminate slaughter of innocent men, women and children in Ukraine cries out to the heavens for a payback.

Rape, torture and genocide are regarded as legitimate weapons to be used against a civilian population. Putin’s henchmen look into the TV cameras at home and seek to defend the indefensible with a litany of outrageous lies. The parallels with Hitler’s Germany are truly frightening. Propaganda has no boundaries. Putin surrounds himself with psychopathic monsters who see mass murder as nothing more than a strategy.

The reason that there has to be a hell is because Putin will not face a court of justice in this life. This is not Putin’s first foray into mass murder – or indeed the spectacular killing of dissenters in other countries through poisoning and chemical elimination. He got away with it – and he will get away with this one too.

They are talking of charging the Russian tyrant and his henchmen with war crimes. What a waste of time …. History is written by the victors and only the losers it seems are culpable for breaking the Geneva Convention. Putin will not lose this war. He may be charged with war crimes ‘in his absence’, but he will never face a prosecutor or pay any penalty in this life. This is why there just has to be an afterlife – and more especially, a hell. If there is no hell, there will be no justice.

If hell does exist, well then doesn’t fairness demand that there be different categories of prisoners down there? The punishment must fit the crime. Would it be fair to lump the mortal sins of say, the guy who executed a successful grope in the back seat of a car with the crimes of Putin, Hitler or Pol Pot?

Some bad things have been done to most of us at one time or another; mainly through dishonesty, slander and the likes. Guys who ‘pulled a stroke’ and got away with it. But I don’t wish anybody ever to go to hell on my account. Same as I don’t expect the sins I have committed to warrant the ‘be gone from me you cursed into everlasting flames’ of my school catechism.

I think I remember reading somewhere that in the earliest years of Christianity, hell was portrayed as a state where the wicked were punished long enough for their souls to repent and be restored to their original state of purity. Now, that system sounds fair to me. Your case might come up for parole every few years and there would always be the hope of getting out of the joint.

None of this leniency will apply to Putin. He deserves to roast into eternity and without ever having any possibility of parole: He should remain there ‘until hell freezes over!’

Now you can see why we need the existence of hell: Because without a hell to go to, there will be no justice….

Don’t Forget

Hell is heaven’s junkyard.