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via BCNN1:

Timothy Rogers, a popular Arkansas pastor and singer, is coming under fire after he recently declared at a funeral that Hell is a “fairytale” no different than Santa Claus.

Rogers, 38, who leads the Prince of Peace Church in Blytheville, made his comments during a more than hour-long presentation at the funeral of a young man he said he did not know but was of the same generation.

“‘Is he (the young man who passed) going to Hell? Did he accept Jesus as his …?’ See, y’all have been sold a lie. You’ve been bamboozled. All that stuff is a fairytale. To believe in Hell means you have to believe in Santa Claus. I don’t care how you cut [it]. Hell is an imaginary place. And I was told that anything that does not have an explanation must be imagination,” Rogers declared.

“So that’s why you can talk about a Hell that you don’t know nobody went to. For a billion years, ain’t nobody ever came back and told you that they were hot. For a billion years, ain’t nobody ever came back and told you that they up in yonder singing around in a choir. I didn’t come for you to agree with me. I know how to lay it out to y’all salted but I don’t care. I didn’t come for you to agree with me,” Rogers said to approving hoots and shouts from the people who had packed the church to mourn.

In his sermon, Rogers explained that life is a gift freely given to man by God to “do whatever you want to do with your life.” He described the Bible as a manual on how to live life successfully. The choices made by individuals in their personal lives, he said, will determine whether they experienced heaven or hell.

“Hell is what you create,” he said to shouts of “c’mon pastor.”

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