Total Pageviews

Monday, October 31, 2005

What, in hell?

I don't like to talk about hell. I don't like to talk with other people about hell. It is very difficult for me to speak on the subject as a pastor.

Yet it is necessary. I believe in heaven. I believe in hell. I believe in an afterlife. There must be something beyond what we are currently experiencing.

This cannot be all there is.

Did you know that Jesus speaks more of hell than he does of heaven? And that almost everything we know about hell in the New Covenant comes from the lips of Jesus?

Jesus found the necessity to speak of hell.

If I saw a house on fire down the street from my home, wouldn't I have the moral and ethical responsibility to run down there and yell as loud as I could that "you have a fire in your house!" "Be warned"!

Hell is a real, literal place. But what makes hell so horrible is not just what we read about in the Bible, but that hell is a place where the is an ABSENCE of the presence of God.

Right now the only thing that is keeping this world from being worse off than it is, is the presence of God and the presence of His church.

I want to avoid hell. I want to live in heaven.

How can I make heaven?

I must acknowledge that there is a gap between God and myself.

I must know that the only way to bridge that gap is by starting a relationship with God.

I must then come to the point where I understand that the way to start a relationship with God is through Jesus Christ, by admitting that I have mistakes and failures in my life, and that when I ask Jesus to forgive those failures, and ask him to reside in my life, my relationship with God is secure.

I encourage you to do that today, if you haven't already. But don't do it just to avoid hell. Do it to start a little bit of heaven in your life today.

Come to Jesus - and start anew and afresh.

With much love.....


Jon said...

Hell (not the little town in Michigan with the cute T-shirts) is a scary place as described in the Bible or described by anyone willing to take a realistic guess. I have heard a number of people who say that it will be a big party and they will get to hang out with their friends and it will be great...but none of that is true, according to all that is written on the subject. Hell is a lonely, tragic, tormented place--not a place for a tailgate party! You will be separated from everything except your torment and pain. And separated from God, which is the most important part of the tragedy of Hell.

But, like you, I didn't decide to follow Christ because I was afraid of Hell. It was because I came to understand the love that my life could be with Jesus! All the other stuff is secondary when you consider that all Jesus asks of us is to have a relationship with Him and to love God and our neighbors with all our heart, mind, strength, and spirit! Jesus is all about love, not about rules and commandments and condemnation; He is about loving everything! He came to earth not to condemn but to save us...what a precious gift He gave to all of us...what a sacrifice God provided for the possibility that we would say yes. Remember that God doesn't force us to come to Him, He doesn't compel our love...that would make us robots or automatons...but, even knowing that a good portion of us would deny Him, would revile Him, would refuse Him, God still sacrificed Himself for us. Can we turn down someone that is so willing to take the chance on us? Can we not at least take the time to learn what this Jesus is all about?

I often ask these two questions when people are hammering at me about my trust in Jesus and the faith that I have in something unseen: If I'm right and Jesus is the only way to heaven, what are you risking by not accepting Him? Eternal damnation is the answer (even though I get a lot of answers ranging from nothing to God would never send anyone to Hell if He loves us--wrong! God is not sending you, you are choosing to go!) that is provided in the only instruction manual (the Bible) available. And what am I risking if you are right that Jesus was only a good man? I risk a life of connection, a life of giving, a life of caring more about others than about myself, a life dedicated to helping people, and a life of LOVE! Isn't that what we should be striving for?

Jesus is real and He is coming back...I want to meet Him and hear Him tell me that I did good! More than that, I want to meet Him and hear His Word as the New World is created, to see His glory as Eden is reformed, to walk the streets of the New Jerusalem with Him as we talk about our days. Oh, to have the experience of Adam, who walked in the afternoon daily with God through the Garden of Eden!! Of course, I'd like to skip the whole getting thrown out of the Garden part! LOL.

Have a blessed day! If you haven't yet made the decision to come to Christ, I hope that we were of some help! Please continue to walk forward in your seeking of the King of Kings! God is good--All The TIME!!

Love God, Love People


Jon said...

Hey, if you haven't already, go back and read youthextreme's response in "God is the healer - why not ask him?" from Thursday the 20th! Great stuff!