Eucalyptus Flower

This is a flower from the Eucalyptus tree, unusual for its lack of petals. Nearly three-quarters of Australian trees are eucalyptic and they are known for surviving the nation’s famous wildfires, for they resprout afterwards or have seeds which survive the flame.

Some Christians object to the doctrine of eternal hell; they argue that nothing can survive the second death and that hellfire destroys the sinner, ending his torment and shame. This is an attractive notion, but may owe more to our suppositions than the scriptural record. Just as these fine trees with their dainty flowers may live beyond the fire, so the human soul may prove indestructible, even when licked by the hottest of flames. I do not know how a God of perfect justice can keep alive punished sinners, but I know He is wiser and more compassionate than I will ever be. Until then, I think not of the bushfire’s inevitability, but the flower’s delicate beauty; the gospel's wonder and majesty rather than hell’s horrific certainty.