WAKE FOREST, NC, September 11, 2013 — Is there an actual, literal place called Hell? If there is, how can a loving God send anyone there? After all, the bible says that “God is Love.” (1 John 4:8b) In case you’re interested, all three are true: 1) Hell is an actual place; not mythological, 2) God is a God of love and compassion, and 3) souls of men are sent to Hell.
Mary Katherine Baxter in her book “Divine Revelation of Hell” provides an account of how she was given a supernatural vision of Hell and spoke of the souls in torment there.
“Wait a minute” (you may say). “How can that be? How can God send anyone to Hell for the purpose of being tormented in fire that burns forever?” (Mark 9:44, 46, 48) The reason is because the God of the bible is a God of justice.
Consider this hypothetical: A man kidnaps two children (boy and girl, ages 3 and 4) at gunpoint at a child care center, and escapes. A manhunt ensues that results in the capture of the kidnapper, but sadly, the children are found sodomized and murdered. At the trial, the judge and jury find overwhelming and conclusive evidence that the accused is guilty as charged. Then, the judge decides to allow the criminal to be released because he (the judge) believes in the overall good within man, and releases him to perform 100 days of community service. In the above hypothetical scenario, would you consider that judge to be a GOOD judge? The answer is obvious; of course he’s not a good judge. A true, good and righteous judge must apply punishment for crimes committed. That is called justice.
Hell was not created for the souls of men. It was created for Satan and a third of the angels who joined Satan in his rebellion against God. (see Isaiah 14: 12-17 and Exekiel 28:13-19) Jesus Himself said: “I saw Satan as lightning FALL from heaven.” (Luke 10:18) The final end for Satan and his demons is described in the book of Revelation: ”And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.” (Revelation 20:10) But those who walk in their own devices will also accompany Satan in Hell: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.” (Revelation 21:8)
Many live their lives as if the existence of Hell does not matter, and assume that God will place us on a giant scale balancing out good works vs. any wrongdoing we may have committed. Give that logic some thought.
Imagine going into a restaurant and asking for a glass of ice tea. The waiter honors your request, brings the beverage and asks: “How many drops of my urine will you allow me to mix with your tea?” In this case, we would not only be insulted, we would look to see that he/she gets fired! In the case of our sin, consider how many we commit each day, and multiply that by 365, and then by the number of years we live.
If we (as mere human beings) would not accept even one drop of urine or impurities in our beverage, why would we expect God to have even lower standards? How much more clearly should we see that a Holy and Eternal Almighty God cannot accept us with ANY sin when we come before Him, let alone a LIFETIME of sin?
You may say: “That’s unfair. I want justice.” Careful, be very careful in what you ask for. Remember the above example about the judge. Wrongdoing must be dealt with and paid for. No, we don’t want JUSTICE; we need MERCY. That mercy is extended to us in the Person of God’s only Son, Jesus Christ. The good news is that we do not have to pay for our sins for all eternity if we accept God’s gift of salvation through the atoning work of Jesus on the cross along with His burial and resurrection. “He (God) has made Him (Jesus) to be sin for us (i.e.: taking our place), Who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him (Jesus).” (2 Corinthians 5:21)
Would it make sense to say: “Well, I’ll take my chances and hope God gives me a break.” Or you may say: “Yes, I will repent and give my life to Jesus Christ… but just not right now. I’m having too much fun.” You may even say: “I’m a good person, and I’m not as bad as some of those really bad people.” If you or I enter eternity unprepared because of our neglect, we have no excuse:
“How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation;…?” (Hebrews 2:3)
God has made us free. Our accepting Jesus Christ as our personal Savior is a choice that He will not force upon us:
“And if it seems evil to you to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.” (Joshua 24:15, NKJV)
Hell is real; eternity is forever. Don’t delay: Make the right move today.
Bill Randall serves as a volunteer Community Chaplain in Wake Forest, NC.
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