Summary: The last part of this series on the end times and it looks at the final judgment
Have you ever read one of those books that have multiple endings? You come to a place where you make a choice, if you turn left then you continue to read and get one ending or if you turn right then you skip to page 232 and get a completely different ending. It’s like the author couldn’t decide which way to go. Some movies that come out on DVD now come with different endings, you can see the good guys win or you can see the bad guys win. Sometimes you read a book and it has one ending and then you see the movie and it has a completely different ending. The ending of this book is kind of like that, you get to choose how the story ends. You come to a place where basically if you have committed your life to Jesus Christ your ending is found in Revelation chapter 21 verse 7 and if you’ve never committed your life to Jesus Christ then your ending is found in Revelation chapter 21 verse 8. And the great thing is you get to choose the ending. Nobody else can choose for you, it’s your decision and yours alone. And really we don’t get many decisions in our life where the choice is ours. When we are young our parents make our decisions for us and once we are married and have children decisions are made based not only on what’s in our best interest but also what’s in the best interest of our spouse and children. But here is a decision that you get to make all by your lonesome. And in order to help you make that decision we are going to take a look at the two different endings to the story, so you can decide which direction you want to go. In the book Alice in Wonderland we read this encounter “One day Alice came to a fork in the road and saw a Cheshire cat in a tree. Which road do I take? she asked. Where do you want to go? was his response. I don’t know, Alice answered. Then, said the cat, it doesn’t matter.” So as we come to the end of the story it would be wise to know where we are going because as Yogi Berra said “If you don’t know where you are going, you might wind up someplace else!”
So here we are, after four weeks at the end of the story. I began by looking at the surety of the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. Then we looked at the Rapture of the Church, that event that will come when the church will be called to be with Jesus Christ. Last week we looked at the 7 year period which I believe the Bible teaches will immediately follow the rapture of the church. Now I know that we skipped the Millennium, but I didn’t know how to fit a thousand years into twenty minutes. Here’s a summation; at the end of the Great Tribulation God’s army defeats the anti-Christ and the false prophet and they are thrown into the lake of fire. The Devil is bound for a thousand years during which Christ rules over the earth and peace reigns, at the end of the thousand years Satan is released and because some people never learn a great army joins him and tries one last time to overthrow God, some people just never learn. God defeats them one last time, because He’s God, and we end up at the final judgement. That was a thousand years in less then sixty seconds. And so that brings us to the end of the book, the part where you get to make a decision. Actually the decision is one that needs to be made now, the result of that decision will echo in eternity. So you ready? Here we go.
At the end of the story there are two destination, not one, not three but two. And every person who has ever lived, every person how is living now and every person who will live until the end of the story will wind up in one place or the other. Now when I was at Bible College studying homiletics, which is how to preach, they taught us that if you were going to deal with a negative topic and a positive topic in the same sermon you ought to deal with the negative topic first. Which makes sense.
So we are going to start with: 1) Where You Don’t Want to Go! This is described in verse 8 when it says their doom is in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur
Today when we talk about the alternative to heaven we call it hell. Which is one of several different names used in the Bible to describe the final destination of the unrighteous. The term Sheol in the Old Testament or Hades in the New Testament are used interchangeably and literally mean the place of Departed Souls. In some instances the term is used to simply mean the grave or death, and in other instances it refers to an actual place, what we call hell.