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February 27, 2005 

A Place Called Hell”

February 27, 2005.  Pastor Matt

 

Revelation 20

 

Ecclesiastes 3: 2.   a time to be born and a time to die,

Turn, Turn, Turn by* The Byrds  

To every thing, turn, turn, turn There is a season, turn, turn, turn And a time to every purpose under heaven A time to be born, a time to die A time to plant, a time to reap
A time to kill, a time to heal A time to laugh, a time to weep

 

2 Corinthians 5:8  (KJV) We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.

 

Revelation 20:11-12.  Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. Earth and sky fled from his presence, and there was no place for them.  And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books.

 

Revelation 21:1.  Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea.

 

Revelation 20:15.  If anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

 

Matthew 25:41, 46. 

41.  "Then he will say to those on his left, `Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.

46.  "Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life."

 

Today we are going to talk about Hell.

 

-          many people do not believe in the reality of hell.

-          Many conclude that God’s love will allow many, if not all, to be saved.

-          Some believe God will give everyone a second chance in the afterlife

-          Some even believe that hell is only annihilation.

 

A survey taken in 1996 showed that only 31% of Americans see hell as an actual location: "a place of physical torment where people may be sent."

 

What is Hell?

 

Luke 16:19-31

 

1. Hell is the place of the first death for those who do not believe (19-23)

 

-          The focus is not on the money but rather two different people, two ranges of people

-          People die.  We will all die some day. 

o       Romans 6: 23.  For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in  Christ Jesus our Lord.

         Hell is the place of death…remember in Revelation 20 it says that death and hell will be cast into the lake of fire.  The two are inseparable

         Heaven is the place of life (22).  Abraham’s side = Heaven (simply put)

 

-          please note that there is no mention of their knowing their time had come

-          one minute they were there, the next, dead

o       we don’t always have an opportunity to see death coming

 

James 4: 13.  Now listen, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.  Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.

 

Ecclesiastes 8: 8.  No man has power over the wind to contain it ; so no one has power over the day of his death.

 

How close are we all to death?

-          the athlete that gets run over by the bus

-          The hunter who gets shot

-          Browning’s son

-          Vehicle accidents

 

 2. Hell is a place of torment, agony, and fire

 

(23)  In hell, where he was in torment,

 

Torment:

-          the rack or instrument of torture by which one is forced to divulge the truth.

 

-          a touchstone, which is a black siliceous stone used to test the purity of gold or silver by the colour of the streak produced on it by rubbing it with either metal.

 

 

(24)  dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire.'

 

In agony:

-          intense pain and sorrow

 

Notice the rich man was very aware of the pain

 

Mark 9:43-48

If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life maimed than with two hands to go into hell, where the fire never goes out.  And if your foot causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life crippled than to have two feet and be thrown into hell.  And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell, where "`their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.'

 

Hell is so awful that it would be better to suffer the pain of losing a limb than to spend eternity in Hell

 

 3. Hell is a place of no return (25-26)

 

(25) `Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony.

 

He is not saying that he is in Hell because he had received good things in earth, but rather pointing out the differences, making a point, that what you have on this earth has no bearing on what happens to you when you die

 

The rich man had the Truth, but he rejected it

 

He knew Abraham, he knew the way, but knowing the way was not enough

 

(26) And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, so that those who want to go from here to you cannot, nor can anyone cross over from there to us.'

 

A great chasm:

-          a gaping opening

-          a great pit

 

has been fixed

-          established, steadfastly set, in other words…permanent

 

Matthew 25:41, 46. 

41.  "Then he will say to those on his left, `Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.

46.  "Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life."

 

-          We were created to be with God forever……We are eternal beings

-          Heaven was made for the eternal angels, not us

 

 4. Hell is a place where the Truth becomes reality (27-31)

 

"He answered, `Then I beg you, father, send Lazarus to my father's house, for I have five brothers. Let him warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.'

 

-          If you can’t save me, at least send someone to save my family from this horrible place!

-          I was wrong!

-          Please hurry and tell them so they don’t come to this reality too!

 

Once they get here, there is no second chances, thus the importance of telling them while they are on the Earth!

 

Who do you have in your life that you need to share Jesus with?

 

Don’t wait to tell them.  Tomorrow may be too late.

 

Don’t’ be afraid to “offend them.”  better an offended brother in Heaven then a lost brother in Hell forever.

 

Get past that awkwardness.  Train yourself in witnessing.  Take an active role in reaching people. 

 

***Please note***  (31)`If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.'"

 

They need to hear the Scriptures so they can make the choice. 

 

John 5: 24.  "I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life.

 

But the choice is still up to them. 

You let them hear the Words, then you have to let them choose

 

 Closing

 

I don’t have answers for those who choose to reject Christ.

 

There are many I am close to that don’t know the Lord and many who have died without believing in Him

 

It makes me want to throw up.

 

After what you have heard today, you do not have an excuse.  You have heard the Truth.  Now you can choose to accept the Truth and Believe in Him.

 

John 11: 25-26.  Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?"

 

In Led Zeppelin’s song Stairway to Heaven, it says,

 

Yes, there are two paths you can go by
But in the long run
There's still time to change the road you're on.

 

Is there time? The time is now.

After we die, can we choose a different path? No

You cannot buy a stairway to heaven.  No one in this world has enough money to pay their way into heaven.

For those of you who have lost ones who need to hear the message, I challenge you in this…

 

Romans 12: 13-14.  for, "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."  How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?

 

Let’s end this service by praying with those who desire to put their faith in the one who will save them from the flames of Hell and by praying for those who desire the courage and ability to share Jesus with those they love.

 

If you need Jesus, come forward and, I’ll pray with you

 

If you need prayer for a lost loved one, I’ll pray with you