Summary: On Halloween it seems fitting to speak about Hell, this sermon shows that Hell is a choice, there are no second chances there and Heaven is a much better choie.
TWAS THE NIGHT BEFORE . . .
(All my sermons use illustrations found at www.sermoncentral.com and all scripture is NIV unless otherwise noted)
Today is Halloween, the night before what has been called “All Saints Day” a supposed time to pray and remember the dead. The History of this evening is one that has morphed into something so much different then what it was intended to be. For instance the Celts, believed that on this night we should celebrate the end of the lighter half of the year, and the beginning of the darker half. That on this night, the border between this world and the “other-world” becomes thin, allowing spirits, (both harmless and harmful) to pass through. The wearing of costumes was done in order to ward off the harmful spirits. This was traditionally a night before the church could pray for those spirits that were supposedly stuck between here and heaven.
It can all be confusing I suppose, but the truth is that when we die, Heb 9:27
Just as man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgment,
Once we die, the next thing to come is JUDGMENT! Hell is not a place we want to be, BUT it is where the demons, ghouls and such belong. So this morning let us look at Hell from a biblical perspective and see the truth from God’s Word.
I must say that many churches and preachers do not talk much about Hell today. The doctrine of Hell is not accepted by many, In a recent survey, it was determined that 35% of Baptists; 54% of Presbyterians, 58% of Methodists, and 60% of Episcopalians DO NOT Believe in a literal place called HELL! 71% of the 8 leading seminaries in the United States Do Not Believe in either Heaven or Hell.
Hell is one of those subjects that many preachers don’t talk about because it makes us uncomfortable. BUT, if more preachers would talk about Hell, maybe less people would brag about heading there. If you could have 30 seconds in either Heaven or Hell which one would you chose to have an impact on non-believers? I would chose Hell, because it might just allow me to show HOW MUCH we would not want to be there. Jesus spoke of heaven much less then He did Hell and the “eternity of Hell” is mentioned 126 times in the NEW TESTAMENT.
Matt 25:41-46 "Then he will say to those on his left, 'Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.' 44 "They also will answer, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?' 45 "He will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.'
46 "Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life."
This morning I hope that anyone who is sitting on the fence might see that you are either for Jesus or you are against Him, and those who are NOT FOR Him are headed to a place or eternal torment and punishment. BUT, what do we know about Hell?
Both Soul & Body can be destroyed in Hell - Matt 10:28 Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.
It is a place of conscious torment Matt 13:49-50 This is how it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come and separate the wicked from the righteous 50 and throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
HELL is eternal and irreversible - Rev 14:11-12 And the smoke of their torment rises for ever and ever. There is no rest day or night for those who worship the beast and his image, or for anyone who receives the mark of his name."
I hope this is enough for you to get the picture, HELL is not a place where we go to have a big party because we were to proud, lazy, or stupid to heed the warning of our Creator and Lord. Hell is a very BAD place and those who reject God will go to HELL.