The Decline of Hell: Seventeenth-Century Discussions of Eternal Torment.

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From the Introduction: "We are ... justified in asking: why did the doctrine of hell remain almost unchallenged for so long a time, and why did it begin to lose its hold in the 17th century? In this book I shall suggest several answers to both questions. The most obvious answer to the first question is the very strong scriptural authority for the doctrine. But a more fundamental reason for the long triumph of hell was the firm and almost universal belief in its value as a deterrent in this life. It was thought that, if the ...

The Decline of Hell: Seventeenth-Century Discussions of Eternal Torment. 1964, University of Chicago Press, Chicago, IL

ISBN-13: 9780226871066

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