Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Life After Death

Part I - Hell

What is Hell?

Hell is the place of final judgment created for the devil, his angles, and all who die without making peace with God.  It is described as the Lake of Fire and a place of utter darkness.

What does the Bible say about Hell? 

Jesus talked about Hell more than the joy of Heaven. 
Jesus said “those who have done good will rise to live, and those who have done evil will rise to be condemned”. (John 5:29)  Hell is a horrible place - a place of “darkness where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth” (Matthew 5:12, 22:13, 25:30), a place “where the fire never goes out” (Mark 9:43). 

The Bible says Hell is a place of choice.  “For God so love the world that He sent His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16)  If you haven’t chosen to follow Christ, you have chosen to go the Hell.  It’s that simple.

People are stubborn and independent and ignore how their long-term choices will affect them.  People are too busy worrying about their day to day lives than of their life after death.  They say, “God is too loving to send people to Hell”, “I have plenty of time, I want to enjoy life”, or “I’m a good person.  I’m not a murder or thief”.   

Appearances can be deceiving.  People don’t look like they deserve Hell.  They are not evil like Hitler and serial killers.  (Romans 3:1-18) – talks about the wickedness of good people.  If people don’t acknowledge their sin and believe in Jesus Christ, the day will come when they will stand before the final judgment (Revelation 20:11-15) and see themselves as they really are.  The final judgment will be done by Jesus Christ Himself.  He will be completely fair and not show favoritism – (Romans 2:11).  We only die once and then there are no more chances - (Hebrews 9:27).

Today more than ever before we see more frequent devastation all over the world with more wars, earthquakes, tornadoes, tsunami waves, floods, etc.  Jesus talked about the signs of the end of the age. (Matthew 24:3-8) - “…..You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed.  Such things must happen, but the end is still to come.  Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.  There will be famines and earthquakes in various places.  All these are the beginning of birth pains.”
Don’t wait too long.  Your time may be running out.  We do not know the hour when the Lord will return.  “You also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect Him.” – (Luke 1:40)

God has the right to expect us to make Him Lord and give Him thanks – He did die for us, you know.  We are full of pride, full of ourselves, and full of our own lives and the pursuit of happiness.  (Romans 1:18) – The wrath of God is on the human race.  When people refuse to believe, they are counting on themselves not God. 

The Bible warns sinners about Hell and should motivate believers to do all they can do to reach people with the gospel.  It shows us how terrible sin is in the sight of a holy God. 

God has proven His love in many ways.  He sent His son, Jesus to die on the cross for our salvation – (John 3:16).  Listen to Him and put your trust in Him.  Listen to His warnings before it’s too late.

Part II - Heaven

What is Heaven?

Heaven is the dwelling place of God.  God is everywhere, but His dwelling place is heaven, the location of His throne, a place where He accepts our worship and hears our prayers.  Heaven is a place where death doesn’t end - a place where the soul lives on.  When believers die, they will be immediately in the presence of Christ.  Not all will enjoy the glories of heaven - only those who have faith in God’s Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.

Heaven is referred to as the “heavenly Jerusalem” - (Hebrews 12:22)  From scripture we think of it in three ways - where faithful spirits of the dead now live, a satellite city from which believers commute to earth during the millennial age, and the new city which will ultimately rest upon “a new earth” (Revelation 21:2).  From the book “Portraits of Eternity

In Revelation 21 John saw heaven glowing with God’s glory with 12 jeweled foundations, pearly gates, golden streets, and a crystal river.  He gave its measurements - the city was laid out in a square, 15,000 miles long and wide, it’s length, breadth, and height were equal, a beautiful place with no worries, no pain, no heartache, no tears, no more death, no sorrow, no sin - only happiness.  It will be a place where we all will worship and serve Him.  It’s a place where all believers will reign with Christ for all eternity.

WOW!  What a place!  I hope I will see you there.

How can you get to heaven?  

Admit that you are a sinner, confess your sins, repent, and believe that Jesus was born, died on the cross to pay the debt for your sins, and was raised by God on the 3rd day.

Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven” - (Matthew 18:3).  “I am the way and the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me” - (John 14:6). “I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again” - (John 3:3).
(Luke 13:5) unless you repent, you too will all perish”.

Once we believe and put our faith and trust in Him, God will not condemn us.  “There is therefore no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus” - (Romans 8:1).   “Through Him everyone who believes is justified … - (Acts 13:39).  Through His love and grace we are saved.  He will protect and provide for us.  We are His and we are a part of His family.  He is saving a place for us in heaven.    

He has rewards awaiting us in Heaven for our faithful service.  We will receive a crown of life.  “Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life” - (Revelation 2:10). We will receive a crown of righteousness (2 Timothy 4:8), an incorruptible crown (1 Cor.9:25), a crown of rejoicing (1 Thess. 2:19), a crown of glory (1 Peter 5:24). We will receive a new body. – (1 Corin. 15:42-49).  

Make certain that Heaven will be your eternal home.

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