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One of the challenge points on the Better World Books 2017 Reading […]
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Two friends were discussing the possibility of life after death. "Hell is a myth," one argued. "How can a God of love condemn His creatures to everlasting punishment?"
His friend nodded in agreement, and the matter seemed to be settled.
The two sat silently for a moment until one of them looked and said, thoughtfully, "Suppose it is true, after all?"
Suppose it is true after all that Hell exists? Jesus Christ Himself described it as a place of "darkness" and a "furnace of fire" where there shall be "wailing and gnashing of teeth" (Matthew 13:42). Some say there is no consciousness after death. But from Christ's words, it's evident that a person in Hell is just as aware of himself and his surroundings as when he was on earth
The Bible, God's Word, says Hell is an everlasting burning for the punishment of sinners and hypocrites (Isaiah 33:14), a bottomless pit (Revelation 20:1) where men have no rest, day or night (Revelation 14:11). It's a place where people pray, but their prayers are not heard (Luke 16:27), where they gnaw their tongues and at the same time curse God (Revelation 16:10-11). Hell is a place where no one would want their loved ones to go (Luke 16:28).
Suppose it is true after all that God will punish sin? The Bible says, "It is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment" (Hebrews 9:27).
Suppose it is true after all that we cannot get to Heaven on the basis of good things we've done? The Bible says, "we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags" (Isaiah 64:6).
Suppose it is true after all that Jesus Christ is the only Savior? Jesus said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me" (John 14:6).
Be assured that God is holy and must punish sin. But He is also a God of love, "not willing that any should perish" (2 Peter 3:9). Therefore, He sent His Son to die on the cross for our sins: "God commendeth His love toward us in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him" (Romans 5:8).
But we must first recognize that we have sinned, ask God's forgiveness and receive Christ as our Savior. Then we can have the joy and peace of God's forgiveness, and the assurance that when we die we will be with Christ forever in Heaven.
Have you received Jesus Christ as your Savior? "He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life; and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abideth on him" (John 3:36). The choice is yours.
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