Summary: The lake of fire in REV 20
Fire – Part 4, The Lake of Fire by Pastor Rob Ketterling
All right. We are continuing our series on fire, and I really enjoyed preaching about Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego and the fiery furnace. And today we are continuing the series, and I'm preaching on the lake of fire. I want you to know if you have your Bibles, you can go to Revelation, chapter 20. That's where we are going to land. But I want to let you know this is a hard topic. This is a very hard topic. I know that when we were planning this series and picking different passages that had to do with fire, it was so easy to say, "Oh, let's do the lake of fire!" And I can remember when we were looking at my travel schedule and which weeks I'd preach, I was like, "Oh, I definitely want the lake of fire." And then when I finally got to the moment of preaching on the lake of fire, I was kind of like, "Pastor Darin, do you want to trade? Do you want to switch out here or anything?"
He said, "No, it's all yours, it's yours."
There is a pressure. I just have to be very real. And I'm going to use humor, we use humor to connect and to relate. But this is a very, very, very serious topic. It's a very heavy, heavy sermon to talk about the lake of fire, to talk about judgment.
Because I will tell you this, that the world is okay with peace. They are okay with Jesus being somebody that gives you comfort and peace. If that helps you get through life, loving Jesus, you can love Jesus, and they are okay with that Jesus. But they are not okay with Revelation Jesus. They are not okay with God as supreme ruler, as Lord, as controller of your eternal destiny. When you start talking about that, the world doesn't like it. The church, a lot of churches don't like that. You will not hear a lot of sermons on the lake of fire.
And I've got to tell you this, if we really believe this, if we really believe why we are here at church, why we are serving Jesus, if we really believe we are on mission with God, that that is real, that we were created to be in relation with God, then we have to take the whole package. You can't leave this out. You have to take Jesus and the devil, and you've got to take heaven and hell, and you've got to take this, you've got to take eternal life. And if there is eternity with God, there is eternity separated from God. And as much as I would love to be able to preach an easier message, as your pastor I'm preaching this with boldness. I'm not holding anything back, and I'm really letting you know this is serious, and I believe we have an obligation to let people know this.
Now, I will be very clear with you. This is a believer's service. You say, "I'm sure he's preaching on lake of fire because he wants to do a great alter call at the end, and he's going to tell everybody that doesn't know Jesus to run to the alter to avoid the fire." Okay. You can give your life to Jesus Christ at every service that we have, but I'm letting you know that is not the motive in this message. This message is for believers. So if you just excused yourself, "Oh, lake of fire, it is easy, I got this one settled," this is for you. I'm preaching this because this message should shock us and wake us up. This one should bother you.
I lost sleep this week because I was thinking about this, because the more I thought about eternity and the lake of fire, those separated from God, I started thinking, "What am I doing for God?" I started evaluating my time, my treasures, my talent. I'm thinking, "Am I doing enough with it? Am I listening to God or am I listening to myself? Am I giving enough, doing enough, serving enough, am I sharing enough? Do my neighbors know? Do my friends know? Do my relatives know?" And it was bothering me. So this is a wake up message for you. This is so you can realize that God loves you and he saved you, and he doesn't want anyone to perish. And you are on mission with God to go out into all the world and to share the message. So I hope this shocks us and wakes us up and to be more sold out, more generous, more serving, more giving, all of the above.