If a Person Goes to Hell, Doesn't the Devil Win?
Michael Wittmer, Ph.D., Professor of Systematic & Historical Theology provides clear and understandable answers to today’s difficult questions often in two minutes or less.
Your question is diabolical because it implies that God could "lose" one person (against His will) by their going to hell. But that rests on the assumption that God is not sovereign. THis is the whole isssue of man’s free will vs. the sovereignty of God.It is the devil who does not want you to realize that God is sovereign.
Of course, hummans are not chess pieces, but beings made in God’s image. That image-bearing includes a level of what is called “free will” on man’s part. We as humans do have some ability to choose things – we perceive and live that out all the time. But there is a higher truth -- God is sovereign over all. Modern man has lost a concept of the true God to such a large extent that the word “sovereignty” has never occurred to most of us. But it is a bedrock upon which rests all we know of God. God is sovereign (the King, the Ruler, the Rule-maker) and we are not. In some largely mysterious way God weaves both these seemingly opposite things together into Reality.
Ah, but we still tout our free will, our ability to “choose.” That word defines our belief about ourselves. But it is a delusion. Adam and Eve in the Garden chose to be “like God,” knowing good and evil, and thus they – and all of us through them – lost the ability to choose only good. We think we choose, but really we are slaves -- “slaves to sin” as St. Paul calls us. Much of what we choose is really stuff we are enslaved to. Our loving God is the One who sets us free from the delusion of being our own god, and gives us the ability to NOT sin, to choose the good. We have been – by Jesus Christ’s everlasting sacrifice on the Cross -- “rescued from the domain of darkness, and transferred to the kingdom of His beloved Son” (Col. 1:13).
Moreover, it is our loving God who chooses who will be so saved. Every one who ends up in heaven has been chosen by God, and the Enemy had no power over even one of these souls. God cannot “lose” a soul, as your question implies… but His sovereignty guarantees that the devil WILL lose the battle. Whose side are YOU on? Come to the winning side - give yourself to God and discover true freedom, true victory, true Life.