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Heaven and Hell: Americans Answer 20 Questions on Who Goes and What Happens

Many American evangelicals love C. S. Lewis’s writings yet balk at his depiction in The Last Battle of Emeth, the soldier who gets to enter Narnia’s heaven despite having followed the god Tash and not Aslan the lion.

Yet such theological inclusivism (often misrepresented as universalism) is now supported by a quarter of evangelicals and a majority of mainline Protestants and Catholics, according to a new Pew Research Center survey.

Most Americans more or less believe that “hell is other people” (apologies to Sartre), according to Pew’s pandemic-inspired study, released today, on suffering and the problem of evil.

Yet when it comes to the actual hell and heaven, in the same survey Pew found “many Americans believe in an afterlife where suffering either ends entirely or continues in perpetuity.”

Pew surveyed 6,485 American adults—including 1,421 evangelicals—in September 2021 about the afterlife, specifically their views on heaven, hell, reincarnation, fate, prayer, and other metaphysical matters.

Today 73 percent of Americans believe in heaven while 62 percent believe in hell, similar to 2017 when Pew last asked the questions.

Read more at Catholic World Report

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