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Posts Tagged ‘hell’

There’s a troubling trend within Christianity that claims hell doesn’t exist.

It sounds in many ways like the teaching of Jehovah’s Witnesses that bad people simply stop existing as spiritual beings when they die — as if that is even possible — and that saved people go to heaven.

Basically, the idea is that unsaved people who reject Christ don’t go to soul prison where they suffer forever, but instead only don’t get invited to the eternal party.

It’s an oversimplification, I know, but you should be aware of the variant teaching starting to permeate too many minds and hearts.

What does Jesus think about the concept of hell?

I’ll let Him speak for Himself:

If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It’s better to enter eternal life with only one hand than to go into the unquenchable fires of hell with two hands. If your foot causes you to sin, cut it off. It’s better to enter eternal life with only one foot than to be thrown into hell with two feet. And if your eye causes you to sin, gouge it out. It’s better to enter the Kingdom of God with only one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell, ‘where the maggots never die and the fire never goes out.’” (Mark 9:43-48).

Jesus was either wrong or He was right.

I choose to believe the latter.

I pray that you do, too, so that you won’t lose sight of why it’s SO important that we lead people away from that path that leads to eternal suffering.

As always, I love you
Martin

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Sometimes we read a verse in the Bible that is SO clear in its declaration.

Revelation 20:15 is such a verse.

If anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.”

I’ve been doing a lot of study lately on the varying teachings within Christianity about hell.

I’ve actually been shocked at the growing number of people who don’t believe in hell, though they are certain about the existence of heaven.

I’ve got much more work to do in order to be better prepared to converse with those who believe differently than do I, yet some verses are so profoundly simple that they must be shared.

The verse above is one of those.

Like Jesus said, no man comes to the Father but through Him. And if one doesn’t go to the Father, there’s only one other place to go.

Please help people see the need and the Way for eternal life. Remember, we’re in the rescue business.

As always, I love you
Martin

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Part of being a faithful believer involves knowing the difference in status between man and God.

Job got it. Do we?

The LORD said to Job: Will the one who contends with the Almighty correct Him? Let him who accuses God answer Him!

Then Job answered the LORD : “I am unworthy—how can I reply to You? I put my hand over my mouth. I spoke once, but I have no answer — twice, but I will say no more.” (Job 40:1-5).

Even in his last recorded words directed at God, Job said he despised himself and repented in “dust and ashes” (Job 42:6).

Job was a much better person than am I and far more successful by worldly measures than I’ll ever be. Yet, Job attested to his personal unworthiness and need for profound repentance.

Job said this not because he was a slimeball worse than anybody else on the planet, but instead because he realized how amazingly holy and powerful was his God.

These words of Job are not intended to make us feel like garbage. Instead, I believe part of their purpose is to remind us of how much we should appreciate the grace of a relationship with the God who is infinitely greater than are we.

Sometimes we humans get the big head. Even Christians fall into this trap at times.

When what we value is ripped away by circumstances or by dumb decisions, though, we’re confronted with the fact that we aren’t God.

The more that we sincerely pray to God and honestly evaluate our lives leading up to the time of loss, the more we’ll see subtle or sometimes not-so-subtle fingerprints of our sin.

And we’ll realize that God was gracious in not simply zapping us into the dustbag of hell.

God desires our humble admission of missing the mark with respect to the life choices to which He’s called us.

When we humble ourselves, confessing our sins and acknowledging His glorious perfection, God doesn’t slap us again and put his perfect boot on our necks.

Instead, He restores us.

Remember, He’s an Abba Father. That means “Daddy.”

As we know and live in proper position with Him, He lifts us from the dust and puts us back on the path to blessing.

I John 1:9 promises believers that sincere confession of sin leads to certain forgiveness.

Job did that in the passages above and how did God respond?

By giving him twice as many blessings than the abundance of blessings that he had before tragedy struck.

Listen, I’m not suggesting that if you stop sinning and start repenting, then God is gonna double your net worth and your network of cherished relationships.

He could if He believed it would build His kingdom, but that’s not the purpose of this Morning Devotion.

I’m simply suggesting that you imitate Job’s accurate recognition of God’s status and holiness compared to your own.

The result for God will be more worship flowing to heaven from your heart, your mind and your flesh.

The result for you will be more blessing, first in the peace found at the feet of God and, second, in whatever other blessings God sends your way as gestures of His love.

As always, I love you
Martin

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