Psalm 9:17 “The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God.”
Matthew 16:26 “For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?”
John 8:23-24 “And he said unto them, Ye are from beneath; I am from above: ye are of this world; I am not of this world. I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins.”
When a person is in Christ; they have the blessed hope of eternal life and when they depart the realm of atoms, their works which they have done in Jesus name will follow them. For the saints who are born of the Spirit, to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord Jesus. We rejoice with joy unspeakable that while we were lost and undone, he granted us repentance to the acknowledging of the truth. The truth that our sins were paid for two thousand years ago on an old rugged cross. In believing on Jesus, our names are recorded in heaven where we have an inheritance incorruptible and eternal.
Nahum 1:7 “The LORD is good, a strong hold in the day of trouble; and he knoweth them that trust in him.”
On the other hand, for those who keep themselves outside the household of faith; neglecting to accept Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord until their final moment passes, everything is lost. In hell, even a persons name has no meaning; a truth that we read about in the account of “a certain rich man” who fared sumptuously every day but didn’t regard his Creator. (Luke 16:19-31) They find themselves in a realm completly void of mercy, hope, or reprieve from the unfathomable torments which were not intended for humans. Nor can they return to warn those who are alive that a realm of such unfathomable anguish and despair exists and is only a heartbeat away.
This sounds like “christianity 101,” however, there is a literal place called hell. Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, went to the cross, paying for our sins with his own blood, to keep us out of that place of perpetual torment. This is a difficult topic to write about, although it shouldn’t be. The truth is that there are people all around us who are heading for this place while many of us who know the truth are consumed by every sideshow under the sun. We have the head knowledge of what this means, but too often, it’s not in our hearts as it should be. I’m as guilty as anyone concerning this and so, as in every post, I approach this with a “note to self” attitude.
Matthew 7:13-14 “Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.”
Since accepting Jesus Christ as my Savior and Lord in September of 1983, I’ve heard only a handful of messages about this very real place. We just don’t like to bring it up; even though we have relatives, neighbors, co-workers, and casual acquaintances who are, at this very moment, on the broad way that leads to destruction. People who are not ready; should their final moment arrive before the next sunrise. People who are going to exist for all of eternity and are now, at this very moment, passing through the valley of decision. Passing by us on the streets, in the marketplaces, and in the venues of the day. People for whom Jesus went to the cross and shed his innocent blood so that they could be with him in a city not made with hands instead of a lake of fire where the smoke of their torment will rise up forever. A place in which each of us were heading, prior to being born of the Spirit.
If I had gone into eternity in August of 1983, I would have now been in hell for 24 years and five months. Twenty four years and five months of unimaginable torment with absolutely no hope of brighter days ahead. All the while, possessing the understanding that such a fate could have been avoided. WE HAVE SUCH A GREAT SALVATION THROUGH JESUS CHRIST! We have such a blessed hope because he is alive for ever more and ever lives to make intercession for us. A blessed hope that is freely available to “whosoever” will call upon the name of the Lord. Regardless of their past or how wicked they’ve been, Jesus can, and will, save them unto the uttermost if they will only call upon him in true repentance.
Most of us live as though this current situation is going to just go on indefinately. Each day we awaken and start into our day, expecting everyone who was in their respective positions the day before to be in their respective positions today as well. Save or unsaved, we tend to unconsciously “trust” that nothing tragic will transpire overnight. Yet hardly a week goes by where we don’t hear of a report where someone perished unexpectedly. Without a doubt, tomorrow is a promise to no man and when this a persons time on earth is complete, their fate is etched into the fabric of eternity; never again to be brought up for consideration.
This was not my intended post for today. That is until I began reading a book by Bill Weise entitled “23 minutes in hell.” Here’s the website where it’s available, although I purchased it at Wal-Mart in Three rivers. www.soulchoiceministries.com While we are warned in scripture of this place, Bills testimony of how the Lord allowed him to experience it (for the purpose of warning others) will cause ones hair to stand up on end. “Sobering” is an understatement. It should cause any who read it to be about the business of reaching the lost instead of focusing on earthly kingdoms which are but for a season. (at best) Thus far, I’ve only reached chapter three, but here are a couple of excerpts from what I’ve read thus far. The first makes reference to a couple of demonic beings, reptilian in appearance, that he encountered initially.
“I pleaded for mercy, but there was none-absolutely no mercy. They seemed to be incapable of it. They were pure evil. No mercy existed in that place. Mercy is from God in heaven.”
Every person alive today; both the just and the unjust, are a testimony to the mercy of God. He truly is not willing that any should perish which is why Jesus commissioned us to go into all the world and preach the gospel. This second excerpt highlights the need for doing so.
“I knew that most people up on the surface of the earth did not believe or even know that there was a whole world going on down here. They wouldn’t believe it. But here it existed, and was all too real. This place was so terrifying, so intense, and so hostile that it would be impossible for me to exaggerate the horror.”
At this point, there’s nothing that I can add to this post which has become too long anyways. We live in an age of slumbering; a condition which affects all of us to one degree or another. We are surrounded daily by people who are travelling obliviously down the broad path that leads to destruction. My prayer is that this post will serve as a wake up call concerning matters of eternal significance and that we would come before the Lord and say “Here am I, send me.”
Matthew 9:37-38 “Then saith he to his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but the labourers are few; Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth labourers into his harvest.”
Another testimony that one will find “eye opening” is that of Aline Baxley which is listed in the blogroll.