I guess this model presupposes that salvation is not through either faith or good works, but through inner goodness: If you enjoy doing bad things, but choose to do good things instead, that doesn’t make you good enough; your inner desires themselves have to be good. (Which means you actually have no control over whether you are rewarded or punished, since people don’t choose their desires.)
Also, it does reward people who enjoy being good but choose to do bad things instead. I don’t think I know anyone like that, though.
(Except maybe some religious people who want to be good but choose to do terrible things they don’t really like doing, because their religion tricked them into thinking those were good things.)
Abby is wrong in one part of this. There is not actually any proof that crabs and lobsters don’t feel pain… in fact, studies have shown that they can be trained to avoid certain locations in their tanks by repeatedly giving them electric shocks there.
That suggests they do experience something that causes them to dislike the things we typically think of as painful. So, even if it isn’t pain in the way we understand it, you’d still be doing something to the crabs that, given the choice, they would prefer to avoid.
But would they fear it more than they fear death? Probably not. It could still be more humane than the boiling-them-to-death option.
Okay, one difference: there is at least a theoretical possibility that you could move into a better job with less painful work and more substantial pay. But in practice, it is rarer than they’d like you to think.
And all other differences are just differences of degree (amount of work expected of you; amount of cruelty inflicted on you) and would not be true for all randomly selected pairs of bosses and slave-masters.