Here are two excellent posts that help to clear away some misconceptions about the biblical teaching on eternal punishment and those who haven’t heard the name of Jesus:
- Kevin DeYoung, “God’s Wrath: Consequence or Curse?“
- Sam Storms, “Bell’s Hell and the Destiny of Those Who’ve Never Heard of Jesus“
Two excerpts follow, but I’d encourage you to read both all the way through.
Divine punishment—hell, in its eternal form—is not simply what we get because we make poor decisions or decide to live a selfish life. Hell is what we get because God is offended by our sin and punishes it. We see everywhere in Scripture that divine wrath is a curse on the ungodly, not a mere consequence for self-centered decisions. Hell is much more than God simply allowing us to have our own way and to experience all the bad effects of our choices. Hell is God’s active, just, holy wrath poured out on the disobedient.
Let me say this as clearly as I can: No one will ever suffer for any length of time in hell or anywhere else for not believing in the Jesus they never heard of. Should I say that again or is it enough to ask that you go back and read it again?