, Idaho Conference
When Stephen McPherson was Idaho Conference president, the
question he was often asked by non-Adventists was, “What happens when I die?”
When he discovered that his longtime friend, James Wood, was co-producing a
movie on that topic, a plan began in McPherson’s mind to bring it to area
McPherson introduced his idea to the Boise Central church congregation,
who agreed that it was a great idea. Not only would it answer people’s
questions about death, it would dispel the misconception of a vengeful God who
tortures sinners forever in hell.
“Hell and Mr. Fudge” premiered at the Egyptian Theatre, a historic
site in Boise’s downtown. The title on the marquee was quite an
attention-grabber. Showings were scheduled for Saturday, January 25, at 7:00
p.m. and Sunday, January 26 at 2:00 and 6:00 p.m. A week and a half before the
showing, posters were posted and postcards handed out. Approximately 400 people
attended. Children under 10 were admitted free. Of that total, it is estimated
that 100 were not Seventh-day Adventists.
McPherson and Wood answered audience questions after each showing,
and tables set up in the lobby had publications on the topic. Signs of the
Times magazines containing “The Truth About Hell” and another featuring “Benefits
of Belief” and a booklet by Danny Shelton, Does
God Burn Sinners Forever?, were handed out.
The definitive textbook by Edward Fudge, The Fire That
Consumes, and DVDs of “Hell and
Mr. Fudge” sold out, and orders were taken for more. Fudge’s book of his
personal journey on the project, Hell, the Final Word, and the book The
Benefits of Belief were also for sale.
The movie is based on Edward Fudge’s theological and historical
search for biblical truth about the false belief of an eternally burning hell,
and the reactions he received when he attempted to correct that false doctrine.