Summary: 7 descriptions of hell.
"The Seven Certainties of Perdition"
A companion of a newly converted Christian said to him one day, "Can you tell me where hell is?" After a moment’s hesitation the young Christian responded to his friend’s inquiry, "Yes, it’s at the end of a Christ-less life!"
A new believer was on a plane with an intellectual (a man educated beyond his intelligence). He sneered at her reading the Bible. Asked if she believed it, the young female Christian responded confidently, "Yes." "You believe "Jonah and the whale story,", the man asked. "Yes." "How did it happen," he asked. "Don’t know, but I’ll find out when I get to heaven." "What if Jonah isn’t there?" "Then I guess you’ll have to ask him for me!"
One of the most painful certainties of this life is the old adage that says: "…there are only two certainties in life - death & taxes!" You also hear just about everyone speak of a certainty of the next life - heaven. But, many today believe that everyone is going to heaven; no one will be left out, according to them. We know different, don’t we! God’s Word tells us that heaven will be a place reserved exclusively. No one will be in heaven that has not first met the requisite criteria! (John 14:6) "Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." (Acts 4:12) "…there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved."
Though heaven is exclusive, the alternative is as well. The requirements are not as strict; there is room for complete indifference and complacency. All a person needs to do is simply nothing! One may just "coast" into hell, if they so wish.
Two of the biggest misconceptions about the doctrine and teachings on hell are first, the belief that "God will not send anyone to hell." Well, this first misconception is true…God will not send anyone to hell; it is not His will for anyone to go to hell. (2 Peter 3:9) "The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance." So, we see that the Lord does not wish for anyone to go to hell. If anyone goes to hell, they will go literally tripping over the broken body of the Son of God, and they will go under the volition of their own will!
The second misconception is that there is not hell (though almost everyone who believes this has no trouble believing in heaven!). Well, Jesus referred to hell on a few occasions in His parables. (Matthew 25:41)
"…Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels…" Jesus was referring in this parable to those who will go foolishly into eternity thinking all is well, when it is not. In this parable of our Lord we can see that He believed in a place called hell. He believed in it so much that He utilized an illustration to warn people about its reality. In this parable Jesus attempts to warn any of us that fall into apostasy and spiritual slumber, only to wake one day into inevitable eternity and find out that not only hell is a real place, but because of our spiritual indifference, we will make our bed in its depths!
Folks, hell IS a real place! It is just as real as the heaven many of us say we are going to. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to go there!
I would like to notice seven certainties about hell…
I. Its Scheme.
When the Triune God-head drew up the blueprint for the creation of this world an d its inhabitants, hell was not an original part of the Divine schematic. When anarchy and mutiny arose among Lucifer and his cohorts, the God of heaven and earth needed a place to hurl these eternal vagabonds. It was then that God, in His divine wisdom, dug a pit, stoked the hole with an unbearable, eternal flame, painted the walls and atmosphere of this pit with the blackest of black, and cast the leader of this heavenly mutiny (along with a 1/3 of his followers) into this corruptible hole we now know as hell.
You see, a part of the grand and Divine scheme is heaven; this is the reason hell was created. Heaven can have no one or nothing sinful in shape, way or form! Heaven will be totally sin-free. In its inhabitants, its buildings, its sustenance and its atmosphere there will be not one trace of sin, corruption or unrighteousness. Therefore, there must be a place where the sin of this world will finally be dumped. So, anyone who is not ready for heaven (whether they are sinful to the "inth" degree, or simply complacent and indifferent) will be making the bed in hell!