Summary: Final of a three part series exploring what the Bible reveals about life after death. Clues which bring great hope and reassurance about Heavenly life after the end of our earthly life.
AFTER HERE, WHAT’S HEREAFTER? (PART 3)
1. A REVIEW OF LAST WEEK – SUMMARY
2. REVIEW LUKE 16:23-26
a. Point – Tormented rich man not in hades because he was rich.
i. Bible teaches riches, or lack of them does not dictate our eternal destiny.
b. Christ told story to jolt greedy Pharisees into realization that their riches cannot save them; poor people might be better off in the life to come
c. Christ describing the radically different destinies of a believer and unbeliever.
d. Remember the rich man Lutzer spoke of.. the one who for whom a “quick” funeral was prepared?
i. Both he and the rich man in the parable, and millions like them have discovered too late that their worldly influence could not save them; nor could their wealth and reputation extricate them from this bind. Instead of victors, they were now victims; rather than bragging about their freedom, they now had to confess their enslavement.
3. POINT ONE: The man was fully conscious immediately after death.
a. Memory, speaking, pain, and bliss – all of these were a part of his experience.
i. “Have mercy on me and sent Lazarus………
1. Still giving orders
a. Relationship continues
b. In hades, an alcoholic will thirst. The drug addict will crave but will not receive.
c. There will be increased desire with decreased satisfaction
4. POINT TWO: The eternal destiny of this man was irrevocably fixed.
a. “Between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, so that those who want to go from there to us cannot, nor can anyone cross over from there to us.”
i. The man had an overwhelming realization that his destiny was irrevocably fixed. And the future of his predicament became worse, never better.
5. POINT THREE: This man knew himself well enough to know that what he was experiencing was fair and just.
a. Apparently the man believed what was happening to him was just for two reasons.
i. First, never says anything about how unfair it is for him to be there.
1. Complains about the pain, but not injustice.
ii. Second, and more important, he knew exactly what his brothers would have to do if they were to avoid his own fate.
1. If they would repent, they would be kept from joining him in misery.
b. Incredibly, the man suddenly became interested in missions.
i. Begged Abraham to warn his five brothers
1. Realized unforgiven sin led to a place of agony.
ii. With his heightened perception and a better understanding, he could see that his relationship with Jesus should have been his highest priority.
c. Instead of wanting his brothers to join him in hades for the sake of companionship, he was more than willing to never see them again if only he knew they would be on the other side of the gulf.
i. Apparently even in hades there is great compassion, a natural human concern about the fate of those who are loved.
d. Abraham’s answer is instructive.
i. “If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if some rises from the dead.”
e. JESUS TOLD THIS STORY BEFORE HIS DEATH AND RESURRECTION.
i. Yet today, even though the evidence for His resurrections is overwhelming, as Abraham prophesized, many men and women still do not believe.
6. POINT FOUR: The rich man in Luke 16 was not yet in hell, but hades.
a. The Bible is clear that no one is yet in hell today. Someday, hades will be thrown into hell, but that has as yet not happened.
7. Read (Revelations 20:11-15)
a. At this point in our study, in “Hades/Sheol” there are two regions.
b. In either region, we maintain, with an apparent heightened awareness:
i. Our Memory
ii. Concern for those we love
iii. Recognition of others
iv. Awareness of our circumstances.
9. No exit from hades
a. Remember, hades is not purgatory
i. Purgatory believed to have an exit
ii. Some faiths believe no one good enough to enter heaven
1. Must go to purgatory first to be purified
a. Length of stay depends on degree of badness!
iii. I could not find the word purgatory in the Bible
1. There is no Biblical truth to purgatory!
b. 2 Peter chapter 2
i. Peter finishing telling of the punishment of disobedient angels – spoke of God’s judgment on the world
1. Brought the flood to ungodly people while sparing Noah
2. Burned Sodom & Gomorrah as an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly
a. But rescued Lot – a righteous man, tormented in his soul by the lawless deeds he saw and heard.
ii. 2 Peter 2:9:
1. ”The Lord knows how to rescue godly men from trials and to hold the unrighteous for the Day of Judgment, while continuing their punishment.”