January 16, 2018

The Biblical Teaching of Hell (Part Two)

Jerry Sivnksty

FrontLine • November/December 2009
(Part One here)

In Luke 16 we have an account of two men who died. We read in Luke 16:22, “And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried.” The Scriptures solemnly declare the certainty of death. Second Samuel 14:14 says, “For we must needs die.” Psalm 89:48 states, “What man is he that liveth, and shall not see death?” Job 30:23 declares, “For I know that thou wilt bring me to death.” Hebrews 9:27 says, “And . . . it is appointed unto men once to die.”

Death is a universal reality that no one can escape or avoid. Death is no respecter of persons. Genesis tells of great men who lived hundreds of years on this earth.

  • Genesis 5:5, “And all the days that Adam lived were nine hundred and thirty years: and he died.”
  • Genesis 5:27, “And all the days of Methuselah were nine hundred sixty and nine years: and he died.”
  • Genesis 9:29, “And all the days of Noah were nine hundred and fifty years: and he died.”

These men lived long years on this earth, but they all died. And if the Lord tarries, there is coming a time when all of mankind will walk through the door of death. Ecclesiastes 8:8 says, “There is no man that hath power over the spirit to retain the spirit; neither hath he power in the day of death.” Psalm 39:5 states, “Behold, thou hast made my days as an hand breadth.” And Job 14:1 reminds us that “man that is born of a woman is of few days.” The brevity of life is a certainty!

People must be told the truth of the Scriptures concerning life after death. In John 5:28, 29 Jesus Christ said, “Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.” In Luke 16 two men died, but they went to different locations. The Bible tells us that the beggar died and “was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom.” This was the place of the person who was trusting in the future coming Messiah as his Savior. Abraham’s bosom would be done away with when the Lord Jesus Christ arose from the grave. However, the location of the rich man in Luke 16 has not been changed. Verse 23 says, “And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments.” Notice that the word “torments” is plural. First, there was the torment of thirst. Verse 24 says, “And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue.” Second, there was the torment of fire. The end of verse 24 says, “For I am tormented in this flame.” Third, there was the torment of remembrance. Abraham responded in verse 26, “Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things.”

I heard a song many years ago, and one of the phrases was, “Oh, how awful Hell must be!” In Luke 16 Hell was so awful for the rich man that he wanted Lazarus to leave Abraham’s bosom and go warn his five brothers about it. He said in verses 27 and 28, “I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father’s house: For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment.” If this rich man in Hell had such an intense desire to have Lazarus warn his brothers, how much more should the Lord’s people desire to warn others about this terrible place!

Another horrifying teaching about Hell is what Jesus taught in Matthew 8:12: “But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” Many years ago, when I was about twelve years old, my older brother Michael had two boils, one on each of his hips. These boils needed to be lanced, so we took him to our doctor. Dr. Hixson had both of us come into the room and had Michael lie down on the table. He then instructed me to sit on his arms and grab the bar on both sides of the table and not let go. When Dr. Hixson began to cut into the boils, my brother was in such extreme pain that he was grinding his teeth and had tears in his eyes. I have never forgotten that experience. But as awful as that was, it cannot even come close to the horror of Hell. Mark 9:46 says, “Where their worm [soul] dieth not, and the fire is not quenched.”

The Lord does not desire that anyone go to Hell. Second Peter 3:9 teaches, “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” We have the glorious message of salvation. Let us be stirred to share the Lord Jesus Christ with those who are lost and headed toward an eternal Hell.

Evangelist Jerry Sivnksty may be contacted at PO Box 141, Starr, SC 29684 or via e-mail at .

(Originally published in FrontLine • November/December 2009. Click here to subscribe to the magazine.)

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