I’m going to start the New Year off with a subject that, in my opinion, has been avoided of late. The subject of Hell. The place, and it is a place, the purpose, the problem, and the person.
When I say, of late, I mean that for the past few years I’ve noticed a Heavenly Gospel, which is good, as there is a Heaven also, but it seems to me that the subject of Hell has been left out of the conversation (sermons) in the last few years.
It is only appropriate to discuss Hell because when we speak of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, His whole reason for coming to Earth was to save humanity from Death and Hell.
So, let’s start with “the place.” It is a place of eternal suffering. When you die, you either go to Heaven or Hell, there is no “in between” or limbo, as is thought in some religions. You live, you die. It seems trite or disrespectful, but it is the truth. Hell is described in the Bible as “a furnace of fire; there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth…” Among other descriptive words found in scripture, it is a horrible place, separated from the God who created us.
There is a purpose for Hell. It was created by God for the Devil and his angels. As time has no limits with God, before the Man was on Earth, the angels rebelled and Lucifer, God’s favorite angel decided he could be God and was remanded to Hell. That he has some power before the end times is not for me to speculate, however, when the end of the world as we know it happens, and it will happen, the Devil and his followers will be cast “into the Lake of Fire” for eternity.
The problem is that many human people refuse to believe that there is a Hell, or if they believe there is a place of suffering, they think they are immune from going there. There may be a person or two who gloats about “going to Hell,” this too is a problem. The main problem, if you will, is sin. As the history of man’s creation is told in the Bible, Adam and Eve had a perfect life in the Garden of Eden. Since Satan, or as he is called, the Serpent, tempted Eve to disobey God and eat of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, the fall of Man ensued. Adam followed Eve in her disobedience, whether to keep Eve from suffering the wrath of God alone or to keep from losing her, I don’t know. What I do know is this began the unfolding of something that God knew (from the beginning of time) would happen, and He provided a solution.
The solution is a person. The very God who created us. He left the splendor of Heaven and came to a fallen world as a baby. We just celebrated Christmas, what a glorious day! I do not understand the uniqueness of the Godhead, but God sent His Son, who was perfect God and perfect Man to take our punishment for sin (to be totally true to scripture, Jesus sent Himself.) If you are breathing, you were born in sin, the sin of Adam. Jesus was born of a virgin, so He was not subject to the sin we carry. He was, however, tempted as we are, but lived a sinless life. He had to, otherwise he could not have been our pure sacrifice. You may have heard the hymn, “Nothing but the Blood.” Jesus gave every drop of His blood on the cross of Calvary. He died for you and me. He did not stay dead though, He conquered Death and Hell by rising from the dead.
This same Jesus is alive and working in the world today through the Holy Spirit. If you feel a tug of conviction in your heart today, that is Jesus knocking at the door of your heart. Trust Him today and He will save you from Death and Hell.