Nearly three years ago our entire world shut down. We could turn on any news channel and hear up-to-the-minute death tolls. People hid in their homes, afraid of having contact with another human being. Schools sat empty, businesses closed, supplies ran low, and fear was the driving force behind it all. So what were people afraid of? They were afraid of death. The thought of contracting a virus, becoming ill, and ultimately dying terrified an entire population of people.
What’s interesting is that while people took drastic, preventive measures to stay healthy – doing whatever the media instructed to avoid any risk of infection – their ultimate fear was dying. People were determined to stay alive.
It’s interesting to note that most people think death is the worst thing that can happen to them. It’s shocking when we reflect on the choices people made in the name of self-preservation and YET people rarely talk about what comes after death.
- People vigorously avoid the topic of heaven and hell.
- There is no mention of the Judgment to come.
- There is no urgency to talk about Jesus Christ and the Cross.
What people should truly fear is what they will face AFTER this life, if they die without knowing Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.
There is a day coming where all will give account of their actions and motives, and even the intents of the heart. It is called The Great White Throne Judgment in Revelation 20:11-15. That will be a terrifying day for the unbeliever. Imagine the ultimate fear of standing before the Holy God you have rejected your entire life and being told that you will spend eternity in hell.
Experiencing endless, agonizing terror is just one of the horrific aspects of hell. It will be a place of utter darkness, isolation, atrocious demons, putrid odors, lack of oxygen, confusion, hunger, thirst, deafening screams, weakness, exhaustion, burning heat, fire and brimstone, and hopelessness…in addition to the fear!
A lot of people think they will reconcile this issue on their deathbed, or if they are diagnosed with a fatal illness. They believe they will have ample opportunity to make decisions about faith, salvation and eternity later on in life. Why do people believe they can go all through life and ignore this terrifying reality?
John 3:19-20 says, “Men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed.”
They don’t want to believe that they must give an account of their life to their Creator, Almighty God. Also, “people are deceived by their own pride” (Obadiah 1:3).
Prov. 14:8 says, “The prudent understand where they are going, but fools deceive themselves.”
In Dr. Maurice Rawlings book, “To Hell And Back, pg.32, he said, “Most people are deathly afraid of dying. They say, Doctor, I’m afraid of dying. But I have never heard one of them say, Doctor, I’m afraid of judgment.
And judgment is the main concern of patients who have been there and returned to tell about it.”
Look at these next verses about hell and judgment:
- Revelation 14:10-11, “He shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. And the smoke of their torment ascends forever and ever; and they have no rest day or night.”
- 2 Thessalonians 1:8-9, “In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his power.”
- Romans 1:18, “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness…who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death.”
- 2 Peter 2:9, “The Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptations and to reserve the unjust under punishment for the day of judgment.”
- Psalms 73:18-19 says, “You cast them down into destruction, where they are utterly consumed with terror.” And this terror continues for all eternity.”
- Isaiah 33: 12-14, “The people shall be as the burnings of lime: as thorns cut up shall they be burned in the fire…Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire? Who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings.”
- Isaiah 38:18, “Those who go down to the pit cannot hope for thy truth.”
Jesus said in John 14:6 that He is the truth, and no one comes to the Father, except through Him. Repentance of our sin is a requirement for our salvation.
Make no mistake; spending eternity in hell, separated from God and His goodness, in never ending torment is the thing you should fear the most.
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By Bill Wiese, author of 23 Minutes in Hell