sinner eternal liberty to go on wrecking the universe, is even more awful. God is Love and is not willing that any should perish, and finds no pleasure in the death of the sinner. Indeed He has at His own expense made such a provision that no one need ever perish. But he is bound by His Love for others to safeguard them eternally against the malignity of those who love evil and hate good.
Finally in Matthew 11:20-24 Our Lord reveals that at that last and awful judgment day He will take into account not only what a man actually did, but what he would have done under better circumstances: and in John 15:22-25 He shows the nature of the final and unforgivable sin. It is only those who when they see God and His works hate Him, who are beyond hope of redemption. So long as repentance is possible hope is possible. It is only Eternal Sin which baffles even the Almighty, and seals the sinner's irrevocable sentence:—
There remains but one question which always arises whenever the terrible fact of Hell is preached. It is this: if it be true that God cannot bring the wicked to repentance why does He not annihilate them? The answer to this inevitable question is two-fold. Firstly, if annihilation were the worst that the sinner had to fear then there would be many who would be tempted to pay this small price for their sinful pleasures: whereas the awfulness of Eternal Punishment has frightened many from their life of sin, and brought them to repentance and Eternal Life, as they considered whither their feet were leading them. In the second place we are told that the smoke of Hell will always be visible in the New Creation, and there are those who are "scarcely saved" (1 Peter 4:18) and only kept from slipping into sin again by the eternal reminder of its wages! So the sight of the prison walls has