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Firstly, great emphasis is given that the contents of this series are intended to give Biblical information and insights on some of its contents. They are not intended to scare or offend anyone. It is one’s prerogative to read and never be shoved into one’s throat.
This piece is a simple sharing of bible passages. It doesn’t endorse any specific faith, religion, denomination, system of beliefs or theology aside from those in the bible.
It is in the “exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship, without discrimination or preference” as provided by The Philippine Constitution that this article was made.
If you find them scary, intimidating or offensive, please feel free to take them with a grain of salt and regard them like a badly written movie script.
Hell and Lake of fire are real and should be taken seriously
Let’s start this discussion by making this point: What exactly is at stake that Jesus died for man’s sake? Not just simply die, He suffered probably one of the most gruesome death ever experienced and was made in front of the public.
One of the logical reason that comes to mind is hell and the lake of fire. The place as described in the bible that threatens to shift the conditions of humans in the afterlife from extreme best to extreme worst is, pardon the pun, one hell of a reason why one should give up his life for sake of others.
Further, there must be something of great importance why millions of Good News disciples, preachers, missionaries, and laymen are willing to give up their lives or way of living just to spread the good news.
The bible and Jesus never played with words when describing hell. They as straightforward as they possibly can. It was clearly no going around the bush or joking around when it comes to this topic.
Here’s how Jesus emphasized seriousness when dealing with hell:
43If your hand causes you to stumble, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life maimed than with two hands to go into hell, where the fire never goes out. 45And if your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life crippled than to have two feet and be thrown into hell. 47And if your eye causes you to stumble, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell, 48where ‘the worms that eat them do not die, and the fire is not quenched.’ Mark 9:43-49, NIV
Jesus was probably speaking using a figure of speech but His message is nothing but clear, hell is to be avoided at all costs.
Hell and lake of fire refer to a place
The first essential characteristic that is desired to be established is hell is a place where humans can end up. The bible makes this very, very clear. It’s not a state of mind, a state of being, a condition, nor a metaphor.
There’s no such thing as “one’s own hell”, like someone could create their own hell.
The Hebrew and Greek words translated as hell are “sheol”, “hades”, “gehenna”, and “tartarus”.
According to scholars, the English translation of these words pertain to grave, pit, lake of fire, and place where beings are confined or judged.
All translations clearly refers to a place.
Here are some samples of the verses pertaining to hell and lake of fire as a place:
18But he does not know that the dead are there, That her guests are in the depths of hell. Proverbs 9:18, NKJV
15Let death seize them; Let them go down alive into hell, For wickedness is in their dwellings and among them. Psalm 55:15, NKJV
5But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I say to you, fear Him! Luke 12:5, NKJV
4For if God did not spare the angels who sinned, but cast them down to hell and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved for judgment 2 Peter 2:4, NKJV
8But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death. Revelation 21:8, NKJV
The lake of fire was made for the devil and his demons
The Gospel of Matthew states the lake of fire was prepared and intended for demons, not humans.
41“Then He will also say to those on the left hand, ‘Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels Matthew 25:41, NKJV
Purpose of the bible
The bible made clear what kind of book is it. It is intended for those who want eternal life. It is not a science,medicine, logic or history book. Many tend to forget this.
You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me. But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life. John 5:39-40, New King James Version
It also made its theme clear. While there are many tales narrated by the bible, one thing remains clear from start to finish: Humans caught in a crossfire between powerful adversaries and one of them, God, is offering redemption/salvation.
The bible says the devil rebelled and continues to rebel against God and dragged humans along to be involved in this godly battle he started.
7And war broke out in heaven: Michael and his angels fought with the dragon; and the dragon and his angels fought, 8but they did not prevail, nor was a place found for them in heaven any longer. Revelation 12:7-8, NKJV
…she [Eve] took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband [Adam] with her, and he ate… And the Lord God said to the woman, “What is this you have done?” The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.” So the Lord God said to the serpent…I will put enmity Between you and the woman, And between your seed and her Seed…. Genesis 3: 6, 14-15, NKJV
12Those along the path are the ones who hear, and then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved. Luke 8:12, NIV
God’s love and the danger posed prompted Jesus to come to earth and provided everyone a way to get out of the mess.
16For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. John 3:16, NKJV
8He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil. 1 John 3:8, NKJV
These verses encapsulates what the new testament is for. If you are encourage by these verses, you are invited to search the bible deeper and find out more about Jesus and his teachings.
The presence of spirits and unexplainable events and multiple scientific, medical, and logical reasons that supports the bible and its authors’ credibility project a possibility that God do exists. As such, being conservative might be the best alternative here.
Accountants describe conservatism as selecting the option that would show the worst possible financial standing of a business entity when two or more unproven alternatives are available. This is to remove the user of the account’s output be exposed to a bigger risk in case the worst possible scenario happens.
As it stands, the risk of not believing in and obeying God far outweighs the benefits of doubting his existence. It might be best to act conservatively, believe what the bible says, until it is absolutely proven that there is indeed no God nor hell.
By: Armando M. Bolislis
If you are inspired and want to give Jesus a try, go on a deeper search of the bible, especially the New Testament. This will show you how to become his disciple. Always ask the Holy spirit for guidance in your search.
If you feel the want to belong to a Christian church or organization, find one that will help you improve your relationship with Christ and lead you to his eternal promises.
The opinions and suggestions contained in this article are solely of the author and doesn’t necessarily reflect the stance of Baguio Herald Express management and staff.