Nitzsch argues against the doctrine of the annihilation of the wicked, regards the teaching of Scripture about eternal damnation as hypothetical, and thinks it possible that Paul reached the hope of universal restoration.
As all deserve damnation, there is no injustice in leaving them to their deserts.
" Deadly " sins were those for which formal ecclesiastical penance was held to be necessary, in order to save the sinner from eternal damnation; for " venial " sins he might obtain forgiveness, through prayer, almsgiving, and the observance of the regular fasts.
He had long been an eager seeker after salvation and was not fully satisfied as to his own " conversion " until an experience in his last year in college, when he lost his feeling that the election of some to salvation and of others to eternal damnation was " a horrible doctrine," and reckoned it " exceedingly pleasant, bright and sweet.
He wrote Damnation de ?artiste (1890), Tenebres (1892), Stances dorees (1893), La Nuit (1897) and Promethee (1899).