This has now become a controversial subject with some who say they are 'Christians' while also claiming there is no hell. Well this is a subject we here are extra passionate about because not only is there proof of hell, but also of heaven, though heaven does take a bit more faith to believe in than does hell, you can't have one without the other.
The discussion of Hell of course is never a pleasant one, but one that must be discussed for the Christian. Just because today we have people denying it's existence or the horror of the torment there does not make it any less real.
Scripture is clear on Hell and the things which go on there and the things which will go on there in the future. We have many passages from Jesus himself that describe in great detail the reality of hell and who goes there and what one must do to avoid going there.
There is only one thing that will keep a person from the horrors of an eternity in the place called Hell and it is holiness through faith in Jesus. Satan would like nothing more for people to not believe in it or the full truth about it. A popular false belief that seems to be gaining steam on Hell, is that when a person is thrown into it they will be burned up and cease to exist as a soul, but nothing could be further from the truth.
The fact is everyone must live somewhere forever because God made our souls and spirits immortal. The physical body is merely a shell that houses both the spirit and soul and though our physical bodies was given a short time frame to live or spirit and soul was not.
Another thing that leads to this false belief of Hell not being a place for torment is scripture in Matthew 10:28 that calls it the "second death" and "fear him who can destroy both body and soul in hell." But this does not negate Hell also being a place of torment and another reason why one can not just go by one scripture, but you must look at it all in context. Hell is like a gigantic prison where people are sentenced for eternity and though the first death is temporary the second one isn't. There are many who believe a life in prison is no life at all, but in fact just a living death. It is much the same in this description.
But to compare prison here on earth to prison in Hell is still not adequate. There are many comforts here on earth in man's prisons that there aren't in Hell. In fact there is no comfort whatsoever in Hell. In fact there is no rest either. There is both rest and comfort in mans prison but not in God's. Lets look at some of the biblical descriptions of Hell now.
Matthew 13:42 reads as follows:
"The angels will throw them into the blazing furnace where the people will cry and grind their teeth in pain"
If the soul and spirit were being burned up here to no longer exist, there would be no crying or pain, instead there would come relief from not existing any longer. If it were being consumed it would have been pointed out here and in other scriptures, but it never is.
Mark 9:4849 reads:
"In hell the worm does not die, the fire is never put out. Every person will be salted with fire"
If the worm does not die, then neither do the people. They would wish for death to come but it never will. Also to be salted with fire is torment, not consumption.
Revelation 14:11 is extremely clear on how no one actually dies in Hell, but instead they are in torment because there is no rest. It reads:
"And the smoke from their burning pain will rise forever and ever. There will be no rest day or night for those who worship the beast and his idol or who get the mark of his name.
2 Peter 2:4 reads:
"When angels sinned God did not let them go free without punishment. He sent them to Hell and put them in caves of darkness while they are being held for judgment"
There are those who say Hell was made for angels and not people as if God could not have made a separate more comfortable Hell for men. The fact is, angels and people get the same punishment because God wants it this way. He does not revel in it, but we are all given a chance to avoid going there in the first place.
The rich man's torment is documented in Luke 16:24:
He called " Father Abraham have mercy on Me! Send Lazarus to dip his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am suffering in this fire!
This is extremely clear that the flames of Hell torment, but do not consume. To diminish the truth about Hell, will actually send more people there. If people think there is no punishment for their life of sin, then they have no compunction to cease their sinning lifestyle. There are many who come to God because of the truth of Hell, but few if any will come believing a lie because they see no need for life change.
No one will ever complain when they get to heaven that they got there because they were afraid of going to Hell. This is in fact a very healthy fear. Fear of what man can do is not healthy, but fear of God is. The truth of the horrors of hell should never be diminished lest we become half truth tellers ourselves.
More to come on heaven in just a bit............
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