Blessed Zwingli: On The Fiction of Purgatory and the Reality of Hell

zwingli_squirtI believe that the figment of purgatorial fire is as much an affront to the redemption of Christ freely granted to us as it has been a lucrative business to its authors. For if it be necessary by punishments and tortures to expiate the guilt of our crimes, Christ will have died in vain and grace will have lost its meaning. Can anything more wicked be imagined in Christianity? Or what sort of a Christ do they have who wish to be called Christians and yet dread this fire, which is no longer fire, but smoke?

But that there is a hell, where the unbelievers, disobedient and public enemies are forever punished with Ixion and Tantalus, I not only believe, but know. For when the Truth [Christ] speaks of the universal judgment, He asserts that after this judgment some will go into everlasting fire. [Matth. 25:41]. After the universal judgment, therefore, there will be everlasting fire. Hence the Anabaptists cannot cover up with His [Christ’s] word their error, that ’ôlam, or “for ever” does not extend beyond the general judgment. For in this passage Christ is speaking of everlasting fire that will burn after the judgment and will torment the Devil and his angels, and the ungodly who despise God, and the savage men who suppress the truth with falsehood and do not mercifully and faithfully aid the necessities of their neighbor.

So take that you feckless and godless pagan universalists (and no wonder you never read Zwingli.  Or Calvin.  Or Luther.  Or Scripture).