After Ricky Gervais delivered a truth bomb to the Hollywood elites at the Golden Globe Awards, the Left told him how offended they were. His response was classic. He said, “Just because you are offended doesn’t mean you are right.”
Many Christians do not believe in Hell simply because the idea offends them. However, once again, that doesn’t mean you are right. No matter how much the subject terrifies you—no matter how intensely you reject the thought of Hell, or struggle with the concept, it is not a valid argument to say, “I don’t believe in Hell because the idea stings.”
It is also not a winning argument to say that a God of love would never create a Hell. All you are doing by saying that is making God in your own image. Jesus is the most loving Person Who ever lived, and He spoke of Hell as being real, as recorded in the New Testament, in 15 places. The word “hell” appears 23 times in the KJV.
Neither is it valid to reject eternal punishment by saying it is a myth made up by parents to scare their children into becoming Christians. If a truth is abused by men, that does not make it untrue.
The worst traitor is the preacher who denies the fact of Hell simply to gain wider acceptance. Paul felt that the reality of Hell should intensify our message to the world. He wrote, “Knowing, therefore, the terror of the Lord, we persuade men…” (2 Corinthians 5:11).
We know that the Holy Spirit is aware of Hell, because Jesus said in John 16:8: “And when He (the Spirit of Truth) has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment…”
The Holy Spirit has prompted me to write to you about Hell because of Rob Bell, a former mega-church pastor who has gained traction because of Oprah Winfrey and CNN. He claims to be a Christian who doesn’t believe in Hell. And, of course, his church is in California.
In my opinion, Rob Bell is not teaching this out of a pure conscience, but to be accepted by the Oprah crowd and those who welcome a watered down Gospel. Furthermore, Rob Bell is not content to disbelieve in Hell, he also wants you and every other born again believer to stop believing in Hell.
He uses a crafty term to get us to reinterpret the Bible. He wrote in his bestselling book, deceptively titled “Love Wins,” that we should not take the Bible literally but “literately.” In other words, he is of a higher intelligence than you and me and can therefore educate us on the proper way to interpret the Bible.
This tendency by the Left and certain evangelical ministers to claim a higher I.Q. than you and me is becoming both common and tedious. You’ll remember Mark Galli, the radical editor of Christianity Today Magazine, spoke about Christians who support Trump. He said Trump supporters didn’t finish college and don’t have jobs. This gave him instant acceptance by CNN and all the other Leftist news outlets.
Look at the verses where Jesus talks clearly and undeniably about Hell:
- Mat 5:22: “whoever says, ‘You fool!’ Shall be liable to the hell of fire”
- Mat 8:11-12: He said that the Jews (sons of the kingdom) “will be thrown into outer darkness; there men will weep and gnash their teeth”
- Mat 13:40: regarding the wheat and the tares: “the angels will gather out of His kingdom all causes of sin and all evildoers, and throw them into the furnace of fire; there men will weep and gnash their teeth”
- Mat 18:8-9 speaks of being thrown into the eternal fire
- Mark 9:44 and 48 calls Hell “unquenchable fire”
- Mat 22:13: in the parable of the wedding feast, the man who lacks the proper garment is “cast into the outer darkness, there men will weep and gnash their teeth”
- Mat 25:30: the man who buried the talent in the ground is also cast there
- Mat 25:41: “Depart from Me you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels”
- Luke 16:22-24: in the parable of the rich man and Lazarus, Jesus describes Hell: 22 “So it was that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s bosom. The rich man also died and was buried. 23 And being in torments in Hell, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. 24 Then he cried and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame’”
Now that Hell is out of the bag we have to face it. Every preacher must decide where they stand. You either believe Jesus or you believe Rob Bell. Let me explain. C. S. Lewis heard famous philosophers say that Jesus was a great moral teacher, but that He was not the Son of God. Lewis blew that argument to smithereens by explaining that Jesus said He is the Son of God, and if He isn’t the Son of God He was lying. And if He is a liar, He is not a great moral teacher. Likewise if there is no hell then Jesus is a liar and not the savior of the world.
But if you were to ask me the most terrifying proof verse of Hell I would say it is John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only Begotten Son that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life.” How can we calculate what it cost God the Father to save us? It was the highest price ever paid for anything. Sometimes the only way to understand the true horror of something is by seeing the extreme measures to which someone is willing to go in order to redeem people from it.
The question when you stand before God will not be, “How can You do this to me?” It will be, “How could you reject so great a salvation again and again, knowing what it cost the Father to give His only Son to die on the cross to save you?”
Hell is real and, thank God, Heaven is too. The way to be saved from Hell is not mysterious. It begins with believing in your heart and confessing with your mouth, as plainly stated in Romans 10:9, “that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”
The old time preachers are right after all! There is a Heaven to gain and a Hell to shun. If you have never said a salvation prayer, please, pray:
Lord Jesus, I see You on the cross dying for me. By dying on the cross, You proved Your love for me. By rising from the dead three days later, You proved You have the power to set me free. Thank you for saving me from spending all eternity in Hell. I surrender my will to You. I repent of all my sins. Forgive me and cleanse me. Come and live in my heart. From this day forward, I will make You Lord of my life, and I will follow You for the rest of my life, until the day You call me to Heaven. Amen