Hell – Part 1 of 5: “Have You Ever Considered the Terrors of Hell?”

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As we begin the year 2015, many are trumpeting the slogan “First Things First!” And to that, I say “Amen!” However, most of us would differ on what those are.  Surely, as professing evangelical Christians, we would all agree that the words of Moses from Psalm 90:12, ought to be near the top of this list: “So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom.” 

When we understand that the apostle Paul wrote his First Letter to the Corinthians from a mixed heart of Christian love and pastoral grief (Hebrews 13:17), it’s not surprising to find out that he chiefly addressed their sinful tendency of being enamored with the wisdom of men above the wisdom of God. To correct this spiritual flaw in their thinking, he defined for them: “true wisdom” - Jesus Christ (1:30); “who are the truly wise men” – God’s faithful ministers (2:1-5); and what is to be “the correct message of wisdom” – the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ (1:18-25). Therefore, in reading 1 Corinthians (1:18), we now understand why many churches today must also make sure that their heads are screwed-on straight about this divisive matter (“for the Word of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing”).  It is troubling that most churchgoers are more concerned with their preacher’s persona (i.e. his demeanor, personality, physical appearance, and pseudo-eloquence [“Isn’t he a wonderful pulpiteer?”] – cf. 1 Corinthians 2:1-2; and 2 Timothy 4:1-5), than they are with the Scriptural clarity and sobriety of his message!? This is especially shocking if men are presently and eternally perishing, because they have foolishly rejected God’s all-wise message of the cross. Do you really believe that the unbelieving and Christ-rejecting men, women, and children of this present evil world, are on their way to eternal Hell-fire? I surely do. Do you live your life as if you truly believe in this fearful, yet Biblical doctrine? Please think with me for a moment:  If Jesus is right … and He is (Matthew 25:30, “there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth in the outer-darkness of Hell”), then our many living but spiritually-lost relatives, co-workers, and neighbors, are all just a breath away from a most frightening eternity! O dear reader, do you understand that the “unsaved” shall soon be tormented forever in unending flames (Luke 16:23-24)?  Beloved friends, have you ever considered that the word “perish” in the Bible actually means “to be spiritually-lost, ruined, or destroyed by God in Hell”!? Please do not forget the words of King Jesus: “Enter through the narrow-gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction…” (Matthew 7:13); nor those of the apostle Paul which refer to those who reject the gospel: “These will pay the penalty of eternal destruction…” (2 Thessalonians 1:9). Lastly, please remember the familiar words in John 3:16, “God so loved the world that He gave His only-begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not ‘perish’ but have eternal life.” Pastor Erwin Lutzer instructs us very carefully here, “Admittedly, Hell is an unpleasant topic. Unbelievers disbelieve in it; most Christians today ignore it. Even the staunchly Biblical diehards are often silent about it out of embarrassment. Hell, more than any other doctrine seems to be out-of-step with our time.” May it no longer be so with any one of us…

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