“Love demands freedom. It always has, and it always will. We are free to resist, reject, and rebel against God’s ways for us. We can have all the hell we want.”
― Rob Bell, Love Wins: A Book About Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived
“…let us recognize that a large fraction of our suffering and that of our fellow human beings is brought about by what we do to one another. It is humankind, not God, that had invented knives, arrows, guns, bombs, and all manner of other instruments of torture used through the ages. The tragedy of the young child killed by a drunk driver, of the innocent young man dying on the battlefield, or of the young girl cut down by a stray bullet in a crime-ridden section of a modern city can hardly be blamed on God. After all, we have somehow been given free will, the ability to do as we please. We use this ability frequently to disobey the Moral Law. And when we do so, we shouldn’t then blame God for the consequences.”
― Francis S. Collins, The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief
“There’s always a choice. That’s God’s way, always will be. Your will is still free. Do as you will. There’s no set of leg-irons on you. But… this is what God wants of you.”
― Stephen King, The Stand
“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. Those who knock it is opened.”
― C.S. Lewis, The Great Divorce
“No man […] can be so stupid to deny that all men naturally were born free, being the image and resemblance of God himself.”
― John Milton, The Tenure of Kings and Magistrates
“Christians . . . ought not to be threatened by fantasy and imagination. Great painting is not “photographic”: think of the Old Testament art commanded by God. There were blue pomegranates on the robes of the priest who went into the Holy of Holies. In nature there are no blue pomegranates. Christian artists do not need to be threatened by fantasy and imagination, for they have a basis for knowing the difference between them and the real world “out there.” The Christian is the really free person–he is free to have imagination. This too is our heritage. The Christian is the one whose imagination should fly beyond the stars.”
― Francis A. Schaeffer, Art & the Bible
“If not to God, you will surrender to the opinions or expectations of others, to money, to resentment, to fear, or to your own pride, lusts, or ego. You were designed to worship God and if you fail to worship Him, you will create other things (idols) to give your life to. You are free to choose, what you surrender to but you are not free from the consequence of that choice.”
― Rick Warren, The Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth Am I Here for?
“God wants us to choose to love him freely, even when that choice involves pain, because we are committed to him, not to our own good feelings and rewards. He wants us to cleave to him, as Job did, even when we have every reason to deny him hotly. That, I believe, is the central message of Job. Satan had taunted God with the accusation that humans are not truly free. Was Job being faithful simply because God had allowed him a prosperous life? Job’s fiery trials proved the answer beyond doubt. Job clung to God’s justice when he was the best example in history of God’s apparent injustice. He did not seek the Giver because of his gifts; when all gifts were removed he still sought the Giver.”
― Philip Yancey, Where Is God When It Hurts?