Because sin is all around us, we’ve become somewhat accustomed to it. Many people have come to think that hell is too severe for the sins committed today. We’ve determined that God should not judge anyone so harshly. What we need to realize is whom we have sinned against. Sinning against our fellow man is not the same as sinning against Almighty God.
Thomas Aquinas, who was considered the greatest theologian of the medieval Church said this in the book, Hell on Trial, page 108-109, “Now a sin that is against God is infinite; the higher the person against whom it is committed, the graver the sin—it is more criminal to strike a head of state than a private citizen—and God is of infinite greatness. Therefore an infinite punishment is deserved for a sin committed against Him.”
To continue with this thought, if I lied to you it would be wrong but if I lied to the Supreme Court it would be worse, because of their position. If I punched my brother in the stomach it would be wrong but if I punched my mother it would be worse, because of her position. God is infinitely greater in position. He is also infinitely greater in being. If someone stepped on a bug and killed it, it would not an issue, even though it’s life. If someone killed a dog or cat, especially your pet, that would be worse and deserving of some amount of punishment. Yet, if someone killed a human being that would be far worse, deserving of a much greater punishment. God is infinitely greater in position and being therefore, sinning against an Almighty, infinitely powerful, eternal God is deserving of eternal punishment.
Throughout a person’s life, God gives everyone countless opportunities to repent and receive Him as their Lord and Savior. He even gives people dreams and visions to keep back their soul from the pit, as Job 33 states. Those who have gone to hell pushed God away. They knew the truth as Romans 1 states, but willingly rejected Jesus, even though they were aware of the judgment to come.
God will not tolerate sin, and especially would never allow it in heaven.
Revelation 21:27 reads, “But there shall by no means enter it (heaven) anything that defiles, or causes an abomination or a lie, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.”
To further explain why sinful man cannot enter heaven is because God’s nature is different than ours. Hebrews 12:29 and Nahum 1:5 say that He is a consuming fire. All of us would be consumed by His presence in our natural, fallen state as sinners.
Consider this analogy:
If I stuck my hand into the fire to retrieve something and the fire burned me, I wouldn’t say, “Why did that fire burn me? Why was that fire mean to me?” No, of course not. The nature of the fire is to burn. My hand and the fire are not compatible. Neither are a Holy God and sinful man compatible. God has to give us a new nature, and a new spirit that’s compatible with His. He can only do this if we trust in what Jesus did for us on the cross, and not in our own works. Our good works are as filthy rags to God, as Isaiah 64:6 states. God considers our trust as if we were righteous, and when we repent of our sins then Jesus washes them away by the payment of His shed blood. He took the punishment for us on the cross.
There is only way sinful man can enter a perfect heaven.
Many believe that God is unfair in the punishment of Hell. However, Deuteronomy 32:4, says, “He is the Rock, His work is perfect; For all His ways are justice, A God of truth and without injustice; Righteous and upright is He.”
Psalms 96:10,13 says, “He shall judge the people righteously…and the people with His truth.”
The next verses show that God is not only just but is also merciful:
- Psalms 86:5, “For You, Lord, are good, and ready to forgive, and abundant in mercy to all those who call upon You.”
- Romans 5:8, “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
Some may think that the endless duration of hell is unfair compared to 80 or 90 years of a sinful life. They feel the crime doesn’t fit the punishment. There are at least three reasons why time is the wrong premise.
1. Time spent in hell to pay off sins would be considered works. Ephesians 2:8-9 says we are saved by grace, not by works. Time could never pay for sins.
2. Our time is not valuable enough to pay for sins. Only the shed blood of Jesus has that value. Hebrews 9:22, “Without the shedding of blood, there is no remission of sins. Only someone who is eternal and has never sinned can pay for sins.”
3. The time it takes to commit a murder may only be a few seconds yet the time justified for the punishment may be a lifetime. The time it takes to commit the crime has nothing to do with the time allocated for the punishment.
Revelation 21:8 says, “All unbelievers will have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone.” This is a warning.
Jesus said in Matthew 12:37, “For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”
If a person says, “I don’t believe the Bible” they are ignoring the warning and choosing to go against the words of Jesus and the Bible. Their own words determine where they will spend their eternity.
Our free will to choose is a very powerful and precious benefit however, there are consequences we will suffer, and we will be accountable for our choices.
Deuteronomy 30:19,” I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live.”
Will you be wise enough to take God’s advice and choose the path to heaven?
Copyright 2007-2023 Soul Choice Ministries – All Rights Reserved
By Bill Wiese, author of 23 Minutes in Hell