Trying to erase rebirth from the suttas would be a rather nonsensical thing to try to do. Ven. Bodhi:
- The teaching of rebirth crops up almost everywhere in the Canon, and is so closely bound to a host of other doctrines that to remove it would virtually reduce the Dhamma to tatters. Moreover, when the suttas speak about rebirth into the five realms — the hells, the animal world, the spirit realm, the human world, and the heavens — they never hint that these terms are meant symbolically. To the contrary, they even say that rebirth occurs "with the breakup of the body, after death," which clearly implies they intend the idea of rebirth to be taken quite literally.
Yes, rebirth, heavens and hells are all found in the suttas. Traditionalists will always be able to win that particular argument, as far as it goes. But the question remains: is any of it plausible?
After seeing enough discussions over the years, I think it's safe to say that these things can only be accepted on faith, as religious beliefs. Other arguments put forward are almost inevitably pseudoscientific or flawed in their reasoning.
If that works for you, then OK. Though I do wonder: if one is prepared to accept Buddhist supernaturalism, then how can we be sure that the supernatural teachings of other religions aren't true? Perhaps, from your point of view, I will go to hell for harboring wrong (annihilationist) views. But how can you be sure that you won't go to hell because Allah dislikes non-theist Buddhists? Once we enter the world of faith, things become very dicey.
Looking at Ven. Bodhi's comments about the reasons for accepting rebirth, it's interesting that what he describes is most decidedly not a process of critical enquiry, but one of religious self-indoctrination:
Admittedly, for most of us the primary motivation for entering upon the path of Dhamma has been a gnawing sense of dissatisfaction with the routine course of our unenlightened lives rather than a keen perception of the dangers in the round of rebirths. However, if we are going to follow the Dhamma through to its end and tap its full potential for conferring peace and higher wisdom, it is necessary for the motivation of our practice to mature beyond that which originally induced us to enter the path. Our underlying motivation must grow towards those essential truths disclosed to us by the Buddha and, encompassing those truths, must use them to nourish its own capacity to lead us towards the realization of the goal.
Our motivation acquires the requisite maturity by the cultivation of right view, the first factor of the Noble Eightfold Path, which as explained by the Buddha includes an understanding of the principles of kamma and rebirth as fundamental to the structure of our existence.
In brief: "A person suffers existential/psychological turmoil, and turns to Buddhism. After committing himself to the path, he discovers that it (apparently) requires him to accept supernatural beliefs. By this point he is already deeply invested, perhaps having already made personal sacrifices, and having received emotional/psychological benefit from the practice, so he chooses to accept the supernatural beliefs and close off further scrutiny. That in turn leads him to supernatural understanding based on his supernatural beliefs."
Now it may be that such a process brings its own rewards. It's not my purpose to dismiss it. But it is clearly at odds with critical thinking; indeed, the two are squarely opposed.