Sunday, September 12, 2010

Heaven, Hell & Eternity Part Two – Hell


Last week in part one of this series we took a look at what the Bible has to say about Heaven. We found three important truths about Heaven:

1. There are many things in Heaven today including an eternal city which is being prepared for God and His Children.
* This city surface covers 2 million, 250 thousand square miles.

2. Heaven is a temporary residence for those who are justified by grace. (Just-If-I’d Never Sinned)

3. Heaven is for the saved who no longer are on earth but await the final judgment day.

You can order your copy of the message at the information desk in the foyer or go online at to view the archived sermon.

I told you last week that if Jesus did not come before today, the Lord willing, I would teach part two of this series – Hell. Now some of you may think, like Jewish tradition teaches, that since Messiah did not come on Rosh Hashanah this year, you have another year in which to be safe … I wouldn’t bank on it for two very big and very reasonable considerations:

1. The Samaritan Levites, including the current High Priest who claims to be the direct descendant of Aaron and therefore heir to the priesthood, have a different calendar than do the Jews. The Samaritans who still live and worship on Mount Gerizim in the land of Moriah, 30 miles north of Jerusalem, the place where Abraham built the first altar to God in the land God promised to give him and his descendants … the same place upon which Joshua and the Children of Israel pronounced the blessings of God, the very same place where Joseph had his bones buried by the well of Jacob his father … these Samaritans today hold that the Jewish calendar is off by one month.

So, for these descendants of the tribe of Levi and the tribes of Joseph, Rosh Hashanah will not be for another 25 to 27 days. I love these continual, scriptural windows of opportunity to believe for the return of Messiah to catch away His bride!!!

2. The second reason why I would not feel so secure about having another year is because, whether Messiah comes back for everyone or not, He is coming for you in your lifetime … and we cannot know that day nor that hour when the Son of Man will come personally for us.

Now … let’s talk about Hell!

While you turn to the book of The Gospel of Matthew, Chapter 16, allow me to ask you a question.

What do you think it would feel like to know that you have put off the decision to accept Jesus as Lord and Savior until it was one second past the point where it was forever too late?

One second beyond forever too late …

Matthew 16
13 ¶ When Jesus came into the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?
14 And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets.
15 He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am?
16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.
17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.
18 And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
19 And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

Jesus told Peter that He was going to build His Church upon a solid rock. What rock was Jesus referring to? The Rock of Revelation as to Who He was – Jesus the Christ, the Son of God. And, the gates of Hell cannot prevail against the Church which is built upon the solid foundation of God’s revelation concerning His Son.

Now only God can reveal to a person concerning who Jesus really is. Man cannot know it for himself but only by revelation from the Holy Spirit.

V19: “And I will give you the keys to the Kingdom of Heaven …”

There are gates in heaven and gates in hell. The gates of heaven are to keep sinners out while the gates of hell are to keep sinners in. Both the gates of heaven and the gates of hell have keys.

Revelation 1:18 I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.

Jesus has the keys to death and hell but has given us the keys to heaven’s gates. But that’s another subject … let’s get back to hell …

Here are some facts about hell:

1. Hell was created as a prison for the devil and his angels.

Matthew 25:41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:

2 Peter 2:4 For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment;

2. Hell was renovated to accommodate the souls of mankind.

Isaiah 5:14 Therefore hell has enlarged herself, and opened her mouth without measure …

Luke 16: 23 And in hell he lifted up his eyes, being in torments, and saw Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.

Luke 12:5 Fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into hell …

3. Hell is a temporary holding place for the souls of the unjust until the final judgment day.

Revelation 20:13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.

2 Peter 2:9 The Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished:

Revelation 20:14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.

At the final judgment day, hell will be commanded to release the souls of the unjust who have been imprisoned since time began so that they can be brought before the great white throne and sentenced to separation, isolation and eternal torment in the lake of fire where there will be great weeping and gnashing of teeth forever and ever without reprieve.

This future scene weighs so heavily upon the heart of God that He was provoked to offer His Only Son on the cruel cross of Calvary to provide an opportunity for you to be pardoned.

Luke 16 tells of a wealthy man who died and went to this torturous prison. He described it as being tormented in flames, worried and anxious, without hope, surprised to find himself in such despair. There he waited for the judgment day with a fearful concern of what was to come not only upon him but also upon his family whom he knew would follow in his footsteps.

Psalms 9:17 The wicked shall be turned into hell, And all the nations that forget God.

This is the future that awaits all who do not know Christ. Today you are either a citizen of heaven or a citizen of hell. Today your name appears on some eternal manifest, on some roster, and when the role is called, unless your name is written in the Lamb’s Book of Life, you will spend eternity in the lake of fire with the devil and his angels, where darkness consumes the soul, where the worm does not die and the fire is never quenched.

If you are not born again, if you have never been saved by grace through faith in the blood of Jesus, today you can be. By a simple act of your faith you can have your name added to the Lamb’s Book of Life today. You can receive your very own set of keys to the Kingdom of Heaven if you only believe and are willing to receive.

First: Realize that you need a savior.
Next: Repent of your sin and turn your life over to God.
Then: Receive forgiveness of sins and the salvation of your soul by the grace of God which comes by faith in Jesus, Master, Savior and King.

Proverbs 15:11 Hell and destruction are before the LORD: how much more then the hearts of the children of men?

God is looking at you and He is hoping you will accept the free gift of His Son’s life which was sacrificed for your sins. Take this opportunity to pray and ask Jesus to come into your heart. Let God know you believe the Bible and that Jesus is His Only Begotten Son. Receive God’s love poured out for you on Calvary. Become born again today and begin a new life in Christ.

Salvation is just a beginning. You might say, how does one know they are saved? First by faith, and then by action. If a person has truly been converted there is an evident change that takes place in the attitude and actions of life.

Matthew 25:41ff says that the reason Jesus knew that some had not ever experienced a true conversion is because He knew them by the fruit of their life. Those who continued to be the same selfish, self absorbed, unkind and uncaring people they always were, had evidently not been born again.

Now I didn’t say that, Jesus did …

This is not salvation by works but works definitely follow salvation. We don’t do good deeds so that we can be saved – rather, we do good deeds and care for others because we have been saved and have received a new nature, the nature of Christ.

Salvation is the first step – now that we are born again, what should we do?

1. Get to know God’s Word
2. Talk to God everyday about everything
3. Get involved in a good Bible Believing, soul winning, Kingdom advancing, world impacting Church