In Wyoming we have our own piece of Hell about 45 miles from Casper. It is interestingly called "Hell's Half Acre." That is interesting because the area encompasses about 320 acres. (Maybe there was an attempt to minimize hell's influence to a half acre.) According to some of the local historians the area was actually known as "The Devil's Kitchen" back in 1833. Thus, the area has been connected to the realms of hell in one fashion or another for nearly 200 years.
Interesting and odd names for towns and locations can attract attention, but do they make us stop and pause to consider the deeper realities? A parade float created to resemble a saloon with plenty of alcohol flowing creates an image in and of itself. Add a sign "Hell's Half Acre" with a depiction of the flames of hell and the image increases in intensity. Maybe Billy Joel had a point when he sang, "I'd rather laugh with the sinners than cry with the saints because sinners are much more fun." Then again, he may have never considered the ultimate consequences for living a lifestyle contrary to the teachings of the Gospel.
Reflections on the "four last things" used to be a serious matter. We pondered death, judgment, heaven, and hell and recognized the significance of walking humbly with our God. In modern culture we seem to see a much more casual attitude regarding these eternal issues. It almost appears that we don't even believe in the existence of hell although Sacred Scripture certainly refutes that proposition.
My closing questions for today are simply these:
Where do we draw the line in regard to our attitude toward spiritual things? Do we find ourselves too casual, too serious, or just right? Do we have an understanding of where to draw the line between the cultural idea of "fun" and outright "blasphemy?"