Sadly, I’ve heard folks make this declaration. They’re not afraid of Hell because they either don’t believe it exists or they don’t understand what it entails. Since they prefer doing their own thing and don’t want anyone, including God, telling them what to do, they figure the cost is worth it. It’s spiritual suicide.
This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what he has done has been done through God. (John 3:19-21)
A construction boss once told me, “I’m going to hell where me and my buddies will be playing cards.” Such infantile views of hell are prevalent, unfortunately. Phrases such as, “better to reign in hell than to serve in heaven”1 are bogus definitions of what one’s status will be once put there. Jude describes it as “the blackness of darkness forever.” (Jude 13) It's pretty hard to “rule” in a place where you're surrounded by eternal blackness.
Everything I’ve ever read or seen on hell, the writer or artist typically describes it as being underground, people are swimming in boiling lava, or being tortured by demons, etc. Others can’t reconcile how it can be both of “the blackness of darkness,” as Jude portrays it, and yet also be a place of fire. Doesn't fire cause light? they ask.
Although scripture describes hell in metaphors, don't think the symbols relieve the reality, which is always worse. The Greek word for ‘death’ means “to separate,” and refers to the separation of the soul from the body. Eternal death means eternal separation. You won’t have any body, with hands, feet, eyes, and ears. You’ll be separated from all of that. You’ll also be eternally separated from other human beings and God Himself. It will be the worst Sensory Deprivation Chamber (SDC) you can imagine. People who underwent experiments in SDCs—where they float in 98-degree water, in total darkness, and in total silence—started going insane after only an hour or two. Imagine being without sight, hearing, speech, or the ability to move about and touch anything for all of eternity. Imagine not having any frame of reference whatsoever.
Just as there will be varying degrees of reward in heaven, so too will hell be worse for some than for others. While you breathe you have hope. My friend, do not cast away your eternal soul just because you harbor certain notions concerning life after death, or because someone convinced you that once you're dead, it's all over.
Once you die, there is no second spin of the wheel. It is appointed unto men once to die, and after that, the Judgment. (Heb 9:27)
1From Milton's, Paradise Lost, line 63