A lot of people just don't want to talk about hell. Many of them think hell is just a joke. They say it's a scare tactic invented to keep people afraid. They also say hell is tied only to religion, or it is used to guilt people into good behavior. Others claim it is an outdated belief of ancient Christian creeds or nothing more than a fairy tale promoted by Hollywood movies. Some even claim hell is right here on earth.
In reality, people reject the idea of hell, judgment and a place of eternal suffering because it offends them. They don't want to talk about it because it makes them uncomfortable. Yes, hell makes people uncomfortable. There is tremendous irony in that statement given the eternal discomfort many will face.
What does the Bible say about hell? More importantly, what did Jesus say about hell? Jesus spoke about hell and destruction in 46 Bible verses. In Matthew 7:13, Jesus said many are going there. Jesus said to fear God who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. He speaks of those being cast into the fire, of weeping and gnashing of teeth. He describes those cast into everlasting fire, cast into a furnace of fire, everlasting punishment, a place where their worm dies not and one being appointed his portion with the unbelievers and cast into outer darkness. Was Jesus a liar? Was He merely using colorful speech?
Here are a few questions everyone should ask themselves:
— Do I really believe God means what He says in the Bible?
— Do I only pick and choose to believe the parts of the Bible that make me feel good about myself?
— Do I dismiss the thought of hell because it doesn't agree with my idea of who God is?
— Do I avoid the topic of hell because I don't really understand the gravity of it?
There are even self-professing Christians who reject this fiery place of eternal torment because they say that their God is a god of love. They are correct! God loves us so much He gave us all a chance to be saved from this heinous place. That is indeed love! Ignoring the topic then, or denying the existence of hell, is foolish and unwise, especially on the part of a believer. Jesus warned people over and over again. Shouldn't you do the same?
The Bible clearly teaches hell is real, and those who go there are not God's followers. Every person is an eternal being, but every person is not automatically a child of God (see John 8:44). Every person has been given the choice to come to God through Jesus Christ before they die. If we want to know God and spend our eternity in heaven, we must believe that Jesus died for our sins, was buried and rose from the dead. We must choose to turn from our sin, ask His forgiveness and receive Him as our Lord and Savior.
Every man and woman will face Jesus Christ after they die. If they rejected Him during their lifetime, it will be too late to believe in Him. It will be too late to obey Him and too late to choose life.
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