As we read through the book of Ezekiel, it is easy to get the wrong idea. It is tempting to think that God wants to punish his people, the Jews, for there is so much talk of judgment and destruction. It seems like there is no way out. But there is.
Ezekiel 18:31-32 reveals both the true heart of the Lord and the way for Israel, and us, out of misery….
Why will you die, O house of Israel? For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone, says the Lord God. Turn, then, and live.
This statement suggests that God can be defeated by his own creatures. The Lord has given them free will, and if they choose to rebel, they may, even though this is not God’s desire. Nor is it his desire to see his creatures die.
C. S. Lewis comments on this in his chapter on “Hell” in The Problem of Pain….
Finally, it is objected that the ultimate loss of a single soul means the defeat of omnipotence. And so it does. In creating beings with free will, omnipotence from the outset submits to the possibility of such defeat. What you call defeat, I call miracle: for to make things which are not Itself, and thus to become, in a sense, capable of being resisted by its own handiwork, is the most astonishing and unimaginable of all the feats we attribute to the Deity. I willingly believe that the damned are, in one sense, successful, rebels to the end; that the doors of hell are locked on the inside.