Which Works Better? Love or Fear?

Dear Mr Amirault,
I appologize if my letters seem argumentative. Your writting had brought much peace clarity and I now consider myself a universalist
I believe all will be saved in the end
a bit of my history
i was a hard chore drug addict for fifteen plus years
also suffer from an eating disorder
was raised by a Jehovah witness grandmother who taught me of a angry GOD
during my fifteen years of being a junkie i tried religion many times to save me from drugs but it did not work -For three years i was a memeber of a bible study group while abusing pills but GOD was merciful as I was given a chance to teach and preach though i was as far from perfect as any person can be in 2004 Jesus worked a miracle whereby i did not use any drugs or alcohol for four years than i had a six month relapse but I repented and again the love of GOD works a miracle
i said all that to say because my addictions tear me to pieces and cuz GOD loves me enough to correct me my idea of GOD has changed and GOD lead me to your web site
I Love your articles and the Holy Spirit opens my eyes and my love for GOD grows
the more I know His Love the less do i sin and the more do I do what is right
thank you for being a vessel for our God's Love

When I was young, before studying the scriptures I always believed God loved me no matter what.  I always felt safe and secure with knowing He was a God of love.  I miss that child-like faith and pray that it returns to me. Anyway, when I became 25 years old I got curious about God and my grandmother sent me a booklet on how to get saved.  When I read it, it was like being hit with a ton of bricks.  It basically gave the traditional steps for salvation and said that I had to do it if I didn’t want to spend an eternity in hell.  I remember that day well because my heart broke.  I already thought that I WAS saved in the sense that i would be with God when I died.  Didn’t have a clue the steps to salvation.  I was soooo mad at God (and afraid of Him at the same time) because if, -- what that pamphlet said was true, then if I would've died before knowing this- I would've went to HELL!  I felt soooo betrayed and hurt and scared.  I cried for weeks. 

My husband got upset with me and told me not to read the bible anymore.  But I did. And when I would, I would just get so scared and angry with God.  I tried to live for Him, but I couldn't trust Him with hell hanging over my head.  To shorten this story, I had a nervous breakdown.  I couldn't get it out of my mind, couldn't focus on daily living activities.  I literally went nuts.

Then I came into contact with a Jehovah Witness, which at the time, was a HUGE shimmer of hope because they teach annihilation. Still brokenhearted, but thought I could live my life somewhat back into reality. Eternal Death (what they teach is the second death was still better than HELL). Empty and sad, but better than eternal agony inflicted by a monster of a God.

I did a bible study with her about annihilation.  The scriptures she showed me about Jesus referring to Gehenna fire and prophesies in the old testament( Malachi, Jer., and Isaiah all seemed to fit with what Jesus said would happen to sinners in the garbage dump, and the bodies would be on the earth and the fire was never quenched and their worm dieth not( which they taught me just meant it would burn until God's purpose of destruction was complete and the worms were a symbol of that destruction-maggots eating the carcasses. And the second death seemed to fit in with it. They related everything Jesus said about Gehenna Fire back to past destruction of people and cities and it all used the same symbolism. Even the scriptures of the N.T. about the earth being on fire and Sodom and Gomorrah being examples of what will happen to unrepentant sinners.  I don’t know how to fit those into the scheme of God's plan for all.  I need your insight on what you believe these scriptures to mean.  I have been reading all kinds of written work on the Universal Salvation of All, so I am quite familiar with how words got mistranslated,(like the ages ,destroy, perish etc.) I've read "God's Plan For All", "Hope Beyond Hell", and more.  But none of them have answered these scriptures that are my stumbling block.  I have spent most of my waking hours studying Universal reconciliation because I want to believe it sooo bad.  It's the only way that I can feel that God is really and truly loving and it’s the only way I can trust Him.  The scriptures on universal reconciliation are so overwhelming, that for periods of time I have felt an overwhelming peace.  But then those scriptures that Jesus said referring to Gehenna Fire(garbage dump for dead criminals) and ideas pop back into my head.  I feel lost because I cannot go on with my walk with the Lord if my mind is divided as to what His plans are. I wish sooo bad that I never would've been taught the annihilation doctrine. I know that you are busy and if you don’t have time to respond I understand but I am desperate.  The reason that I am asking you is because I have read one of your articles "Eternal Death: One Step Out of Hell, One Step short of Glory".  And in it you stated that you have been in all three groups, so I feel that you can help me.  My question/questions are:

Do you know when Malachi 4:1-3 takes place? Or Isaiah 66:27-24? Please read these scriptures, then tell me what you think. Are these prophecies that Jesus was referring to when He spoke of the Gehenna Fire? Do you believe that maybe there is an "Age in between when these people are killed upon the earth and maybe they are resurrected again before the New Earth?  I don’t know.  I'm about to give up.  God feels REALLY far away to me right now and I just want some peace.  Do you have any literature explaining any of these for me?  My heart would be forever grateful. I would be sooooooooo much appreciative of any insight you could give me.  Thank you, Gary.  I REALLY hope and pray that the person who received this email has passed this on to you.  Thank you!!!!!!!   Carla

(Such is the fruit of the traditional church gospel. There are millions like her. You probably know some of them, but they hide their fears and tears. They are afraid to let those feelings out in fear that they may have to spend eternity in fiery flames ir get annihilated for expressing their hurts and fears.We are praying with Carla and sharing the Victorious Gospel of Jesus Christ with her expecting that she will recover from this spiritual abuse. GA)

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