Sigmund Freud defined an illusion as beliefs that are derived from human wishes. “We call a belief an illusion when a wish-fulfillment is a prominent factor in its motivation, and in doing so we disregard its relations to reality” (Future of an Illusion, 38-40). Freud said that we tell ourselves that it would be nice if there were a God that is good to us. These ideas were very similar to those of Ludwig Feurbach, who said that religion is an outward projection of what is inside man. However, as Geisler points out, “We can tell ourselves that it would we wonderful if there were no hell or no final day of judgment at which we will be held accountable for all our deeds, but we shouldn’t fail to note that this is exactly what we naturally want to be true” (Geisler, Systematic Theology, 4:317)
C. S. Lewis said: “There are only two kinds of people in the end: those who say to God, “Thy will be done” and those to whom God says, in the end, “Thy will be done.” All that are in Hell, choose it. Without that self-choice there could be no Hell. No soul that seriously and constantly desires joy will ever miss it. Those who seek find. To those who knock, it is opened.” (Lewis, Great Divorce, 69)
The one who refuses God ” has his wish–to live wholly in the self and to make the best of what he finds there. And what he finds there is Hell.” (Lewis, Problem of Pain, 111).
“A damned soul is nearly nothing: it is shrunk, shut up in itself. Good beats upon the damned incessantly as sound waves beat on the ears of the deaf, but they cannot receive it. Their fists are clenched, their teeth are clenched, their eyes fast shut. First they will not, in the end they cannot, open their hands for gifts, or their mouths for food, or their eyes to see. (Lewis, Great Divorce, 127)
“I willingly believe that the damned are, in one sense, successful, rebels to the end; that the doors of hell are locked on the inside. I do not mean that the ghosts may not wish to come out of Hell . . . but the certainly do not will even the first preliminary stages of that self-abandonment through which alone the soul can reach any good. They enjoy forever the horrible freedom they have demanded, and are therefore self–enslaved. (Lewis, Problem of Pain, 115-116)
Geisler says that human dignity demands a Hell: “God created humans to be free, because He will not (cannot) force people into heaven against this freedom, human dignity demands a hell. Jesus cried out “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those who sent you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing.”
He also said that “there are people who cannot stand to go to church one hour a week. What kind of a God would force people to go to church for all eternity?”
Fredrich Nietzsche is often quoted as saying “Better to reign in Hell than serve in heaven.”
In Sartre’s play, No Exit, the door to hell is opened in the middle of the play. No one leaves, for they are there willingly.
Jesus speaks of Hell:
“As the weeds are pulled up and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of the age. The Son of Man will send out his angels, and they will weed out of His kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil.” (Matthew 13:40-41)
“This is how it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come and separate the wicked from the righteous and throw them into the firey furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” (Matthew 13:49-50)
So what can we conclude? That Hell is a real place, a place that is dark, we are alone, and our bodies are burning forever. And the clear statement from both atheists and theists are that it is better to have free will and willingly be separated from God’s goodness forever, which is called Hell, than to be forever in God’s presence. Everyone who goes to Hell goes there willingly, and would have it no other way.
Of course, you don’t have to go to Hell………there is a way out. But it’s your choice.