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How Many Hells did Swedenborg Say there Are?

Question: In his essay “The Red Angel,” the British writer and literary critic G.K. Chesterton (1874–1936) wrote: If you keep bogies and goblins away from children they would make them up for themselves. One small child in the dark can invent more

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Posted in The Afterlife

Are Deaths from Natural Disasters an Unavoidable Side-Effect of God’s Creation?

As amazing and beautiful as this physical universe is, it is also filled with almost unimaginable cataclysmic violence—which commonly brings suffering, pain, and death to the living residents of our earth—plant, animal, and human. Why did God create the universe

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Posted in Pain and Suffering, Science Philosophy and History

Facing our Demons of Darkness, Depression, and Mental Illness – Part 2

In Part 1 we looked at the issue of mental illness through the lens of the story of Jesus healing a demon-possessed man in Mark 5:1–20. One of the points made in that article was that mental illness is not some

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Posted in Pain and Suffering, Spiritual Growth, The Bible Re-Viewed

Facing our Demons of Darkness, Depression, and Mental Illness – Part 1

These days we don’t talk much about demon possession. Yes, popular horror films such as The Exorcist, with their graphic portrayals of demonic possession, do make the rounds in our culture. But most respected health professionals think that a belief

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Posted in Pain and Suffering, Spiritual Growth, The Bible Re-Viewed

Will Happily Married Couples be Together in Heaven?

The first article in this series, “Didn’t Jesus Say There’s No Marriage in Heaven?” responded to a Spiritual Conundrum from a reader named Nita, in which she wrote: I am widow and a believer in Jesus Christ. . . .

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Posted in Sex Marriage Relationships, The Afterlife

What is the Source of the Belief that the Deceased become Angels?

In Heaven: A History (1995: Yale University Press) the authors, Drs. Colleen McDannell and Bernhard Lang, state that Emanuel Swedenborg (1688–1772) had a pivotal role in bringing about a changed view of heaven, including the idea that angels are humans who have died and

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Posted in The Afterlife

What is the Difference between Justification and Salvation in Swedenborg’s Theology?

In the theology of Emanuel Swedenborg (1688–1772), as in other Christian theologies, justification is seen as part of a process that results in our salvation. In a nod to the traditional Christian concept of the ordo salutis (“order of salvation”), Swedenborg

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Posted in The Bible Re-Viewed

Should Christians Tithe?

Over the past couple of years four readers have submitted Spiritual Conundrums to Spiritual Insights for Everyday Life about tithing. First, a reader named Lisa: Lee: I belonged to a Christian church for thirty years which was fundamentalist. My husband paid

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Posted in Money and Business, The Bible Re-Viewed

Does God Change?

In a recent comment, a reader named Rami brought up the issue of God’s unchanging nature vs. God—and God’s relationship to us—changing through time. This post is a slightly edited version of my reply. This begins to push the limits

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Posted in All About God

Will My Body be the Right Weight and Appearance in the Afterlife?

Here is a Spiritual Conundrum submitted to Spiritual Insights for Everyday Life by a reader named Patty: I know this may seem silly but I struggle with my weight and I’m extremely self-conscious about it. Will my body be the

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Posted in The Afterlife
Lee & Annette Woofenden

Lee & Annette Woofenden

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