In this one enormous fact lies the explanation of the Universe as we know it, "travailing in pain together until now", and as we are one day going to know it, divided into Heaven, Earth, and Hell. God has put it into the power of man to will in opposition to His own will and so bring His whole creation to ruin and misery, as we see it before our eyes. Yet, though God will be unable throughout eternity to change the wills of the finally unrepentant, He is able at any moment to prevent them putting that will into effect, and Hell will be the abode of those who, desiring to do evil, find no way of putting their desires into action, but are held "silent in darkness", malignant but powerless.
It is therefore the will of man that is the battleground. That will may find itself in the battle of life so imprisoned by the lusts of the flesh and mind that it knows itself to be a helpless captive led into actions which it loathes: but no power of sin can prevent the will desiring its liberty! And where that will exists, however feebly, God is able to deliver in a moment and send it on its way rejoicing in its new found freedom.1
In this battle of the will there must come a moment when the final choice either for good or evil is taken. After that the soul either plunges down into the foul depths of selfishness and cruelty, or else soars upwards into the delights of love and fellowship. The cruel man seeks and finds ever new ways of grinding others under his heel: the loving man finds his heart increasingly occupied with the happiness of others, who are also concerned with his happiness, and procure it more successfully than he could ever hope to do unaided!
It follows therefore that in our consideration of the Doctrines under discussion we shall rule out at once any solution which suggests that God is not perfect in Love, or that man can be the final victim of forces beyond his control. Any answers to be acceptable must posit the complete unselfishness and unlimited benevolence of God, and the equal ability of man to be the master of his own fate for weel or woe, and to accept or reject the Love of God. When God gave man a free will, He made him free even to hate Himself.