Hell is an interesting topic. It is a valid question people have when asking about a God who is supposedly Perfect Love. "How can an all-loving God condemn someone to eternal punishment?"
It's fairly easy to explain hell as an act of justice, especially poetic justice. Do evil and you will eventually be punished either in this life or the next. Also, if you sin against someone who is infinitely good, the just punishment would be eternal. But hell is actually the result of love.
It sounds paradoxical, but hell is an act of love for the sinner. When someone goes to hell, it is because they chose not to love. Since love must be an act of the will, and God respects our free will, God would not force us to love him. Since God is Pure Love, and the sinner chose to reject love, being with God would be worse than hell.
Hell is "Where God is not." It means there is no other love in that place beyond its existence. This also means if someone wants to hate God for eternity, they can do it. Now one may argue that it would be better for God to wipe out the sinner's existence. However, that would violate two things. First is that God sees everyone's existence as good, just like those against the death penalty see that all life is good. Second is that annihilating the sinner would counter hell being an act of love for the rest of us.
Jesus gave us an analogy. We are salt whose purpose is flavor. But if we lose our flavor, then we will be thrown out to be trampled under foot by men. This shows two things. First is that God will still use you even if you fail your purpose of love. Second, though I don't know if they did this in Israel, is to keep the rest of us from falling down. The purpose of salt on the ground is to prevent men from slipping on the ground. Salt is what you throw on ice so that men can walk. God sends people to hell so that we might not.
God wants what's best for us, and that is for us to be willingly united with him. The first step is instilling the fear of punishment. We have a free will, but we don't initially start life by loving God. When we are children, we initially only fear punishment. We don't really care for our parents. But as we grow older, what started as fear of punishment can grow into fear of offending our parents. The punishment is a seed that grows into an act of love. When we reach this stage, it means we have a true love for God. Of course, if you chose otherwise, then you will receive the punishment promised. Being removed from existence would not encourage you to chose love, but the fear of punishment might.
Another argument is that "Good parents rehabilitate their children, not condemn them eternally." This is true, and that is exactly what life is. Our life is our rehabilitation. We are here so that we may become better people by choosing to love. We receive many opportunities to grow in love for God and our neighbor. It is then our choice whether we want to stay in prison or get out for good behavior. Hell is merely the life sentence that we may choose.
Now this revelation might have brought up some concerns, especially due to our fear of wrongful imprisonment. "What about the mentally disabled from birth?" Since they cannot freely choose to love or not, technically the scale of justice is balanced. However, since God is Perfect Love and wants what is best, they will be united with him. Then why should they live on earth at all if they will go to heaven anyway? It's so that we may grow in love by caring for them. They teach us how to better love each other. They live in order that we may live with God forever. I actually wonder if they are God's angels incarnated, because they have already chose God.
So what about those who never learned about God or learned wrong about him? Actually, they can still go to heaven, though they probably would not reach the pure perfection. If they were truly ignorant through no fault of their own, and they tried their best to live with virtue, they simply unknowingly chose God, because he is the source of love and virtue. However, it is far easier for them to live in virtue and chose God if they are taught correctly. That is why I write to you about the message of True Love. It could be said that God did inspire the other cultures' great teachers in order to prepare them to receive the gospel of the Religion of True Love.
So is hell fair? Yes, in terms of Justice. No, in that sinners possibly deserved worse. It is also not fair because God gives us so much to avoid it. Since God is Infinite Love, and forgiveness is an act of love, all we need to do is repent when we are wrong. When our repentance is because of our love for god, it is a perfect act of love in itself. When it's not perfect because it's based off fear of punishment instead, God will still forgive, but we need to do whatever he commands for restitution, which is always another act of love so that we may grow in love.
Hell is the result of Love, because by its existence, we are encouraged to love. If there was no punishment, not only would that violate justice, but also allow us to not care to love. That would not only be bad for society, but also for ourselves. The existence of hell is True Love trying to call you to itself.
N. D. Moharo
P. S. Since Hell falls in the realm of Theology, I can be wrong. This is merely an explanation on how it would make sense, especially given the purpose of man being to love.