Posts by Joe David Wilson

Hell Part 10

The Greek word for Sheol means essentially the same, the word is Hades. It appears only ten times in the New Testament and is defined by the scholar Thayer as “the nether (lower) world, the realm of the dead.” Hades, taken in its most general sense was the place of assembly and residence for all who departed from the present world before Christ came. The classical Greek writers considered Hades to be divided into two parts. The upper part the “Elysian fields”, the abode of the good, the lower part, just lower down, was tartaros, the place of punishment for the wicked.
When Christ went to the Hadean world He re-made its constituency. He took from its borders the souls that were “under altars who had cried; ‘How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost Thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?” Revelation 6:10 There are some who do not understand Matthew 16:18 where Jesus said; “and I also say unto thee, that thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.” Gates, here, indicate a closure that would keep one in Hades. Jesus went to Hades when He died, but it did not contain Him; He came forth to complete His appointed rendezvous with God the Father. Coming forth from the grave, Christ opened the graves; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose, and came out of the graves after His resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.” Matthew 27:52-53 These were they to whom Moses had delivered a message when he returned from the Mount of Transfiguration where he had been with Jesus and Elijah discussing Christ decease that was to be accomplished outside the city of Jerusalem!(Luke 9:31), they who were stirred (aroused to overthrow Satan in his own kingdom, Revelation 12:7-10) up for Him, even all the chief ones of the earth; it had raised up from their thrones all the kings of the nations”, Isaiah 14:9, when Christ came epitomized as Michael the arch angel- when He went to claim they who were His(in the Hadean realm, the heart of the earth)!! As Paul writes: “Now that He ascended, what is it but that He also first descended into the lower parts of the earth (He went into the Hadean world)? He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens (He went above the heavens above us and the heavens of outer space), that He might fill all things (fulfill all prophecies made concerning Him). (And when He ascended) He gave (sent the Holy Spirit, who empowered) some, apostles, and some prophets; and some, evangelists, and some, pastors and teachers. For the perfecting of the saints (delivering of His New Testament), for the work of the ministry (through the laying on of the hands of the apostles, men were empowered to teach the saved); for the edifying of the body of Christ: TILL we all come (had received) the unity (fullness, the entirety- “when that which was perfect HAD COME”, when the “faith was once and for all delivered to the saints” ) of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God (so we could “know Him (understand why He had to die), and the power of His resurrection (what this means to us in receiving the forgiveness of sins through His blood), and fellowship of His sufferings (“all who live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution”), being made conformable (we might receive a spiritual body, the likeness in which He resides) unto His death); as a perfect (mature) man, unto the measure (totality) of the stature (complete intention of God the Father concerning Jesus Christ) of the fullness (the entire purpose for which) Christ came.” Ephesians 4:8-13
“Because He will not leave My soul in Hades, neither wilt Thou allow Thy Holy One to see corruption (which begins on the fourth day in the grave)”Acts 2:27-31,Ps 16:10

Hell Part 9

The Witnesses insist that the only punishment is death, a ceasing to exist, and the only hell to be expected is the grave. Russell and his posterity claim that it is superstitious error to believe otherwise. They play on the English word Hell in its modern understanding. The word Hell is not a fair present day translation of the term used in the Bible. Our English word Hell has changed in meaning over the centuries so that it now refers solely to the place of eternal torment. Some have supposed that the word Hell in the King James is a mistranslation by them, but that isn’t so, either. For the English of that time it is correct, and does correspond to the word Sheol and Hades. It is now misleading, and is why the Witnesses can deceive the ignorant with such arguments.
There was an early English verb hele which meant to cover, to hide; and from this source comes the final hiding-place, hell. This word was at first used of the abode of the dead, the underworld (which contained both the Elysian Fields of the blessed and Tartarus for the accursed); but it’s use to translate the Greek gehenna, in the New Testament, turned it into the haunt of the fiends and devils, or the horrid hell. The Russellites agree to this truth as in seen in their article on Hell in their Aid to Bible Understanding, page 752. As they state at the opening, “…the word ‘hell’ as understood today, is not a happy translation” So our discussion will not turn on what the current English word Hell means, but rather what does the Bible teach!!
Sheol—this term appears 64 times in the Old Testament. It is translated Hell thirty-one times, and otherwise as GRAVE or PIT, in the King James Translation. More recent translations do not translate the word, but just render it into English as is. The definition of the Hebrew word sheol is the invisible state of the dead, the place and state of those who are out of the way and to be sought for. By this definition, is seems nearly to be the same as the Greek word Hades-which, by the way, the Septuagint almost constantly render it!! Ho hades topos, the invisible place. Our old English Hell, which now scarcely used but for the place of torment, yet being a derivative for the Saxon hillan or helan, which meant to hide, or from holla cavern, anciently denoted the concealed or unseen place of the dead in general, as is seen in the King James version. Jacob cried; “I will go down mourning into sheol to my son in mourning”. Genesis 37:35 What he meant was that he would go down to his grave mourning for he thought his son had been devoured by a wild beast! The Russellites mock this by saying Jacob was going to a receptacle of the body and so that is where all men go; back to the dust of the ground. Jacob certainly didn’t think that in going “unto” his son that he would be going back to the dust where all men go, he was talking about the place he would meet his son when his soul/spirit was separated from his body!! Again, when Nathan and Abiathar contested Moses authority to lead Israel, the Bible says “they went down alive into the pit, and the earth closed upon them, and they perished from among the congregation.” The Russellites jump on this verse and say; “see here, they perished when they went there!” That is not what the verse says!! It says “they perished from AMONG THE CONGREGATION” Finally, they make much over Ecclesiastes 9:10 which reads; “for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest.” This passage speaks of things concerning this life, NOW, in the flesh. All one can do must be done NOW; all purposes, plans, thoughts, knowledge, wisdom will cease at death of things DONE UNDER THE SUN. Jonah, Johan 2:2 “cried out of the fish’s belly, out of the belly of hell cried I”—Jonah was not dead, just unseen by human eyes!!

Hell Part 8

It is always something that all can notice: when the doctrines of men are mentioned, they are always in the plural and when the doctrine of Christ is mentioned-it is always in the singular—hence doctrines verses doctrine!! When we look at the doctrine of Christ it is that which was given in the first century. When we look at the doctrines of men, they are those which NEVER come from the first century! Reference John 7:16, 1 Timothy 4:6, 2 Timothy 4:3, Titus 1:9, and 2:1. When the Bible speaks of man-made doctrines it is always plural: reference Matthew 15:9, Colossians 2:22, 1 Timothy 4:1, and Hebrews 12:9. There is another outstanding difference between man-made doctrines and the doctrine of Christ: the doctrine of Christ started and was first taught in Jerusalem, all man-made doctrines started somewhere else, some even in America!!
Matthew 7:21-23, as we were discussing, concerns itself ONLY with the “once redeemed”! Jesus was perfectly indignant with them for their departure from His doctrine. These who approached our Lord, and you notice they approached Him, were even of the first century. Look at what they claimed and the Lord did not deny they had done: “they had cast out devils in Thy name”. This was apart of the miraculous era of the Lord’s church. This only existed in the first century and was that that was given through the laying on of the apostle’s hands!! There are many denominations that claim such miraculous working power, today-the only trouble with that is that miraculous powers came ONLY through the laying on of the apostles hands, Acts 8: 17-18, or they have to be one of the original apostles Jesus endowed with this power, Acts 1:4-5, and only continued until “that which is perfect is come”. 1 Corinthians 13:10, and it HAS come; Jude wrote that the Church of Christ is to “earnestly contend for the faith which has once and for all been delivered to the saints”. Jude verse 3.
They taught “in the name” of or by the authority of Christ, or this was their claim!!. This teaches us they WERE members of the Body of Christ at one time but had left their “first love” and gone about “teaching perverse things to draw away disciples.” Acts 20:30 Like the Pharisees and Sadducees before them, they wanted to “kill Him and seize His inheritance”. Matthew 21:38 These disciples wanted what rightfully belonged to the Master, to get what was His, they changed what He had taught to what “they wanted taught” and ignored His authority, yet claiming to speak FOR Him!! One would not think some who had been bought by the blood of God’s only Son would rise up against His authority and teach “another Jesus”, but that is exactly what our Lord mentions.
It is a dastardly trick for those who “had known the way of righteousness, to have turned from it”, 2 Peter 2:21. Paul, in the book written to the Church of Christ in Rome, chapter 16:17 says to “mark them which cause divisions and offenses contrary to the doctrine which they had learned, and avoid them. For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus, but with good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the unsuspecting.” Romans 16:17-18 Did you notice they were teaching contrary to the doctrine, not doctrines? There was NO OTHER DOCTRINE in the first century other that the doctrine of Christ!! Christ only started ONE church, the rest were started by a man who thought he had a doctrine better than that of Christ!!
Jesus said; “I never knew you, depart from Me you that work iniquity (lawlessness, not according to My law)” Matthew 7:23 Christ did not deny that they had “worked”, what He did deny was that they had worked by or with His authority!! He did not support what they taught and were refusing to allow them into His eternal habitation


Hell Part 7

“I never knew you”, if there EVER A WAS A TIME when you wanted recognition it will be WHEN you “stand in the Judgment”. Psalms 1:5 There have been many who have claimed Jesus as savior that have never owned Him as Lord!! I hear people all the time claiming kinship with Christ, sadly that is all there is to it-just a claim! Jesus has been rejected more times than He has been claimed by most of us, but we have never thought of Him dis-claiming us!! “Not every one that says unto Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of Heaven; but he that doeth the will of My Father which is in Heaven.” Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied is Thy name’? and ‘in Thy name have cast out devils’? and ‘in Thy name done many wonderful works’? And then will I profess unto them, ‘I never knew you: depart from Me, you that work iniquity.’ Matthew 7:21-23 Notice, there is no rebuttal to His words!!
Let us talk about “standing in the judgment”. Most denominational preachers teach or infer that ‘every soul will be judged by Christ’! This is absolutely not what the Bible says. Read the first Psalm, look at John 12:47: “If any man hear My words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world.” That is pretty plain to misunderstand!! But, they claim, does not the scripture say ‘we all must stand before the judgment bar of Christ’? 2 Corinthians 5:10 Emphatically, it says that and what it says will unequivocally come true and never for a moment would we ever think to deny this truth; but who is the “we”? If I am not mistaken, and I am not, the book of Corinthians was written to the “Church of God which is at Corinth.” 2 Corinthians 1:1 This is exactly what the first Psalm teaches when it says “for the unrighteous shall not stand in the Judgment”. Jesus will judge the Church, God the Father will judge the rest of mankind. You cannot judge someone over whom you have not had control. If a person has never been apart of the body of Christ, Christ has never been their Head, for He is “head over the body, which is the Church.” Colossians 1:18
Now, let us talk about “doing the Will of My Father which is in Heaven.” What is the Will of God the Father? “It is not His Will that any should perish but all should come to repentance.” 2 Peter 3:9 On the day of Pentecost, 53 days after the resurrection of Christ from the borrowed tomb, Peter answered the question of eternity when asked; “Men and brethren what shall we do?” “Then Peter said unto them; ‘repent and be baptized, every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sin, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” Acts 2:37-28 While on the earth, Jesus is quoted as saying; “My doctrine is not Mine, but His that sent Me. If any man will do His will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of Myself.” John 7: 16-17 Paul writes in Ephesians 1:5-10 the following: “Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will…..Having made known unto us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which He hath purposed in Himself: That in the dispensation of the fullness of times He might gather together ALL things in Christ, both which are in Heaven, and which are on earth; even in Him.” The doctrine of Christ is the Will of the Father!! Here is the danger!! The doctrines of men are not the Doctrine of Christ. They differ in what is commanded. Jesus commands “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved.” Mark 16:16, while denominational preachers command; “get saved by praying through to Jesus, then get baptized BECAUSE you are saved, showing the world your baptism to be an “outward sign of an inward grace”.

Hell Part 6

“For the Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and reserve the unjust unto the Day of Judgment to be punished.” There is a BIG difference between the way God looks at the “godly” and the “unjust or ungodly”!! The prefix un means contrary to or against, hence those who are unjust are despisers of the justice of God and at the same time against God, Himself! When God sends destruction on the ungodly, He commands deliverance for the righteous!! The picture seen in the parable of the sheep and the goats in Matthew 25 qualifies this statement. In 2 Peter 2 we have another picture of this truth. The character in this chapter given of Lot is called just. He does not follow the multitudes to do evil, but in a city of injustice he walks uprightly!! That is ONE way to define the “godly”-those who do not follow the ways of the world and in a city of injustice he walks uprightly. There is mouth-full spoken here!! Where, oh Christian, do you find your comings and goings—among the saints or sinners?
Another thing mentioned about Lot was the impression the sins of others made upon this righteous man. In bad company we cannot escape either guilt or grief. It has always been interesting to me that Lot STAYED among those who openly rebelled against God and did not know what it was costing him!! The duration and continuance of this good man’s grief and vexation; it was from day to day, did not alter him, but what he did not see was the way it altered his children and wife!! Being accustomed to hearing and seeing wickedness did not bother him, but what did it do to those he loved?? Every saint has an obligation to ‘survey the territory around them’ and determine if it is fit for them and theirs!! It is not that a Christian could not go to a night club, a beer joint, a pot party—it is whether or not they could live as a Christian and convince others of their sin because they have joined them in such an environment. The Lord has a work many have never become acquainted with. The Lord knows how to set apart him who is godly for Himself; and, if there is but one in five cities, He knows him!! But there comes a time when He calls us to “come out from among them and touch not the unclean thing”—will we like Lot, then, with broken heart see those whom we love LEFT BEHIND WHEN IF WE HAD MADE THE RIGHT ASSOCIATIONS AND LIFE ADJUSTMENTS BEFORE THEM, THEY COULD HAVE BEEN SAVED!! Many will respond; “I can’t get out of my drinking club, my gambling group, or my heinous family”, but who are you hurting by going in among them and acting like their sin is acceptable e but those that are following you? The wisdom of God is never at a loss about ways and means to deliver His people. Sadly, some of His children are red-faced when they must obey Him!! You see, the deliverance of the godly is a work of God, both His wisdom to contrive the way and His power to work out deliverance out of temptation, but when the door is opened to the ‘way of escape’ and you and I are not looking for it nor do We take its passage, who will we blame??!! For all eternity we will do nothing but cry and mourn over the lost opportunities and remember the words of Christ through Moses to the rich man who starved Lazarus to death: “Son, remember”!! The wicked have no share in the salvation God works out for the righteous. The wicked are reserved to the Day of Judgment. The fearful question is BY WHOM ARE THEY RESERVED?? THINK, dear saint, CHECK YOU LIFE TO SEE IF you are righteous or wicked saint or are you not looking for the way out???? Could Lot’s wife EVER been saved?? Had she so grieved the Lord of glory that she would NEVER have seen the open door?? 1 Corinthians 10:13, 2 Thessalonians 2:10-11

Hell Part 5

The coldest words ever spoken by our Lord were those He spake concerning Judas Iscariot, the traitor. It has often come to my mind why so many think Judas is alone in this unenviable role!! What did Judas do that many are not doing, now?? Judas traded his good fellowship with Jesus Christ for $30.00. Not a good trade you say—some trade Jesus Christ and His fellowship for a bottle of whiskey that only cost $4.95. Some will; “that is cost of only ONE bottle.” To that I answer: “It only takes ONE!!” Some trade Christ for a love affair, for a plot of ground, a job, their wife’s good graces, to satisfy their mother, and others for treasonous reasons too many to mention!! Some set home while the church is worshipping the Lord, feeling no remorse, some out of outright defiance, some ignorance and have the audacity to complain about Judas! They rationalize; “I am sick” never thinking they may be making the Lord SICK at heart because of their traitorous rejection of His Kingdom.
Christ was eating the Passover the night before He was sacrificed, there seemed to be no apprehension of trouble coming, everything seemed to be in order EXCEPT one of His disciples was missing, he had left the holy day a little early. The disciples seemed to be pleasing themselves with the company of their master when Christ cast a doubt and an air of coldness overwhelmed the room. He had announced that one of them were to betray Him. “And they began to be sorrowful, and to say unto Him, ‘Is it I’? And He answered and said unto them, “It is one of the twelve, that dips with Me in the dish. The Son of man indeed goeth, as it is written of Him: but woe to that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! Good were it for that man had he never been born.” Mark 14:16-21
One would think Judas would have been extremely nervous when the Master said, “he that dips his finger in the bowl will betray Me”. It didn’t seem to bother him! So sure and depraved with his own wishes, he never felt remorse until he knew for sure they were going to kill the Lord. It is very probable that Judas encouraged himself in his selfish thoughts. After all, Judas had often of late heard the Master tell how He must be betrayed, surely God would not find fault with him that does the deed! Christ told him that this will be no shelter or excuse to him; “the Son of man indeed goes, as it is written of Him”, but “woe to that man by whom He is betrayed.” It was true that Christ was to be “delivered up by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God”; but, notwithstanding that, it is “with wicked hands that He is crucified and slain.” Acts 2:23 Judas was bold in his pursuits of denying the only friend that ever loved him and never stopped to see the end of his works. So is the demeanor of the saint who despises the Lord who loved them!! They fly into a rage when anybody tries to call them to repentance. How much does God despise the individual of whom He makes the assertion “it would have been better for them had they never been born”?? What awaits they who the Lord sees in this light?? It was better for them to have never known the way of righteousness, the fire-escape from Hell, the road that leads to eternal life than to have known it and turned from it, to have put their hands to the plow and looked back, to have become a Christian and then mock God before His face by rebelling against His commandments and ordinances, to have refused the life-jacket thrown to the man while drowning!! It would have been better for that man to have never been. It would have been better to have never been born. “The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished” 2 Peter 2:9

Hell Part 4

Only God could make Hell. Nothing or no one could imagine agony beyond comprehension, loneliness without remedy, desperation inconceivable, or life without God He is all that we have ever known!! The galling existence without a body, that of the alien sinner, will not compare with the intensity inherently designed in the spiritual body of the saint. Typical of God, to one a blessing, to the other a curse.
I have been with burn victims and witnessed the writhing anguish, the contortions that cannot be read in their faces, and have seen their inability to gain that one moment of sweet, peaceable sleep so needed to heal. I have seen pictured something far worse from the Vietnam War when the Communist skinned alive a black officer and hung on a tree. The writhing cries of anguish accompanied with the incessant begging from this soldier to “take him out of his misery” caused the blood to boil in all who had to hear these plaintiff cries for mercy. Fortunately for this soldier, a bullet could end his misery on this side of life, but what of the uncalculated misery on the other side?? I can tell you the relief of all those who witnessed this tragic, inhumane spectacle but none thought of this as the precursor to something far worse!! I am not trying to be melodramatic, I am trying to get you to face what is coming for the disobedient and at the same time shock you into reality about that which will be far, far worse—the estate of the disobedient child!! “It would have been (far) better not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it and turned from the holy commandment delivered unto them”. 2 Peter 2:21 If “eye has not seen and ear has not heard, neither has it entered into the heart of man what God has in store for they who love Him” 1 Corinthians 2:9, what will be the final estate of the unredeemed?? By unredeemed I mean those who cannot, ever, be redeemed, for they have “trampled under foot the Son of God, and have counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith they were sanctified, an unholy thing, and done despite to the law of grace”? Hebrews 10:29 I hate to tell you what the beginning of this verse says!! “Of how much sorer punishment suppose ye, shall they be thought worthy”! The worst thing I know can happen from studying God’s word is for one who has become a child of God to turn back to that from which they had come!! “Vengeance belongs unto Me, I will recompense, says the Lord. And again, The Lord shall judge His people. It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God!! Hebrews 10:31 “God is not mocked, whatsoever a man sows, that shall he also reap. For he that sows to his flesh (lives only to GAIN comfort and satisfy his physical life, here) shall of the flesh reap corruption (the payment for living for this world, it is empty, useless in the LONG PART OF LIFE); BUT he that sows to the Spirit (lives to GAIN life with God) shall of the Spirit (the payment rendered living for God) reap life everlasting” Galatians 6:7-8 Imagine a God so-o possessed with love being as capable of being possessed with vengeance!! God will not be mocked (made light of, made fun of, become the blunt end of OUR joke). Child of God, this is talking about YOU, you are already blood-bought, you will not make light of the price God paid to save your soul, and there is one thing about being a child of God—you cannot EVER become un-born!!!
We are “in the army of God”, there is no a-w-o-l (away without leave (permission), we cannot cry “foul” (that is, someone took advantage of us), we have committed to a Being that has gone so far over-board to make it better for us, He will go just that far to requite us for mocking His “gift”. “Make your calling and election SURE”!!

Hell Part 3

There are those who mock and make light of the place called Hell. They have made so little of its significance they have coined phrases that show their contempt for its existence like “go to Hell”. This brings for them a feeling of control that is not theirs for no one but God could sentence anyone to Hell!! I do not know how Hell can be both a lake of fire and yet a place of darkness. The closest I have come to realizing this could be true came from learning there can be a fire so hot and intense in heat that it will actually burn and not give off light. This type fire “burns from the inside-out” it burns so intensely and there is no cooling breeze. There are coal pits which burn 24 hours a day. Even though you know they are there, all you see in the dark are the fires from those pits. IF this exist should, here, should we not heed the warning, not to go to this place. But, if this were not enough, Hell is a place of remembrance.
Some think this means only that miserable wretches who, like the Pharisees whom Jesus called “offspring of vipers,” will writhe slowly like serpents cast into a bonfire. But, WE are the ones who have far more to remember! Indeed, they will so die, but WE will live to whip our torsos from side to side in anguish and un-relieved, insane, anguishable, punishment. One would think the bodies given when we obeyed the gospel would in some sense relieve this pain, but it seems only to “hold in the wordless pain” you continue to feel in greater and greater degrees. We are indeed as but miserable worms in God’s sight. There is more to this figure of speech than that. Picture a diamond-back rattler with fangs dripping poison, rearing back its head and driving its fangs again and again into your tortured flesh, and with each strike injecting into your veins some strange poisonous substance that keeps you for ever in the state of dying. Or picture some blind senseless maggot-like creature of monstrous proportions burrowing into your flesh and gnawing forever upon our body. As they enter, the sting of death is again and again realized with ever increasing magnitude until the pain is so unbearable we would (if you could) bang our heads again and again against the fiery rocks ablaze with the incendiary-like flames coming from their midst. Oh! If only there was some way to relieve this pain!! As time cannot pass, for time is non-existent, as sensation cannot acclimate, this unbearable experience brings constantly to mind the remedy God had set so you would not have to “come to this place”. We will remember the blood of God’s only Son that washed away our sins, the times when meeting around the Table of the Lord you delighted to ignore the emblems and the precious Lord they represented, and the galling burden of unbelievable coldness falling heavier and heavier on your poor naked body (for this fire emits no heat) that now mocks you because you did not “remain faithful unto death”. Crying aloud or silently whimpering in dreaded disgust for your own stupidity, will not alleviate or relax the endless punishment you would have NEVER experienced, for you were at one time apart of the REDEEMED. It truly would “have been better never to have known the way of righteousness than to have known it and turned from It”.
Then there is the anguish of indescribable remorse you have dashing through your lifeless body every time you hear the cry of your child, your mate, your father or mother, your sister or brother to whom you never taught the gospel of Christ being too busy and caught up with the things you were SURE were more important!! In the blackness so deep it can be felt, you try to move in the direction of the cry, calling out the names of those who baptized you into Christ, begging for intercession, and they cannot be found.

Hell Part 2

The resurrection of the wicked saints will be for the purpose of uniting their tortured souls, now knowledgeable of their horrible, irrevocable fate, with immortalized bodies that they may be doubly punished for their sins.
According to the Scriptures they shall be cast body and soul into the fiery pits of Hell. Have you ever considered what awaits sinners in that horrid abyss? Deep down in the depths thereof is a lake of fire with lavic brimstone dashing its seething searing billows against the precipitous shores. Into that caldron of everlasting fire the writhing, screaming victims of their own selfishness are cast headlong while demons mock, yet curse their own agonizing eternity of unalleviated woe.
In Hell, the lust of the flesh will rage through the body, yet find no gratification. Never!! No, that lust will burn the more tantalizingly and there will be no means of gratification. Drunkards whose burning whiskey appetite drove them to pour ever increasing quantities of fiery dregs down their throats will find their craving for strong drink increased ten thousand fold. But not one benumbing, inebriating drop will be theirs to drink. Fornicators and adulterers with soul and body aflame with fleshly lusts driving them like madmen will find no requite for their vile passions though they burn millions of years. The grape juice and unleavened bread partaken in disrespect will gnarl the appetite of remembrance to greater and greater dominions of passion. The songs sung with light heartedness will ever ring out in their minds with hatred for themselves because they missed the opportunity afforded them. The prayers, Oh! the prayers– un-prayed and prayed will ring out in their ears of remembrance bursting in gnawing discomfort because no one with a loving arm of kindness will reach out for them in tender compassion.
Moan on, lost soul. Scream, lost hellion. Let fiery spray dash into your tortured face forever!! Where shall you turn to escape even for one moment the raging fury of the lake of fire? What if you are so fortunate as to climb the precipitous shores of the lake? Will you find surcease in dashing along a maddened pace over a smoking, smoldering, blistering crust of burning rock which lacerate and sear your unshod feet? As you rush on and on and on for ever and ever on your starless, hopeless, trackless way; you will hear a cry in the distant waves of anguish yet to be endured, crying “Lost, lost, LOST.” That cry will be but the echo of your own voice, swelled by the dirge of millions of others who also had the opportunity and privilege you have turned down! Breathing fire, bathed in fire, with mighty sulfuric and caustic fumes into an already burning, searing, choking atmosphere, you will pray for death but your god, who only you can entertain in prayer, will be at your side in the same anguish! But you can never die, nor know any relief of one fleeting moment of unconsciousness. Rather, your burning conscience shall add its tortures to the fires of this eternal hell the likes of which could never have been told in words!!
My wayward brother, you may mock and ridicule this truth by claiming a lake of fire and a place of darkness cannot exist in any reality; many try to explain away what they do not want to understand; but God’s hand is not shortened—for we have seen only the beauty of His handiwork while here on this beautiful planet. God can so order His creation or so warp your senses that you can at once see the lurid flames of the lake of fire, and yet be caught up in the sensation of being cast out into a void of blackness so deep and impenetrable that you will be as one all alone!!



This study will evoke many questions that are potentially inflammatory. The destination of the wicked and those who mean well is often described in the Scriptures as a fiery state or place, the issues which relate to their fate and final state constitute a burning subject. Frankly, the view presented is to some, controversial, but as always, we will hue to the line of authority that we have always followed and let the “scriptures speak for themselves”. End time topics and inquiries into the state of the dead, both of the redeemed and the damned evoke extensive dispute for those who have not studied for themselves and follow what someone else has taught, a nightmare or dream, or what they have conjured in their minds and have not analyzed.
Many of the atheist, agnostics, and liberals resist this discussion because they do not want to hurt someone’s feelings, be considered “judgmental”, or be probing into something where there is no clear understanding presented, anywhere. This will not be a “trial balloon”; I have often spoken on the subject, but have been asked to commit to writing what my years of study and searching have taught me. I think myself fortunate to be able to discuss this with students, not mere casual readers of the Word of God who are known to be conversant and concerned as to all questions and conclusions which circulate among some of our brethren about what represents to us the “other side” of life to which we all must travel.
The fate and final state of the unredeemed is not a moot subject in the Scriptures. Jesus saw fit to speak of it on more than one occasion. His words are incisive and authoritarian. By all means, they should provide the basis of any studied pronouncements upon the subject.
In the Sermon on the Mount, the most embracive of His discourses, Jesus compared the fate of the wicked to the state of the refuse cast into Gehenna (Valley of Hinnom). Matthew 5:22, 29, 30 He repeats and somewhat extends the analogy in another side-discourse reported in Matthew 18:8, 9 and Mark 9:42. A corpse or carcass or load of soggy garbage might not fall amid sufficient combustibles to be consumed by the incessant flames. But the maggots took over where the fire left off. Such was the fate and state of the refuse cast into “the gehenna of fire”.
When Christ discussed His sheep-goat parable of the judgment, Jesus said: “Then shall he (the King) say unto them on His left hand (the goats). Depart from Me, ye cursed, into the eternal fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels.” Matthew 25:41 The “eternal fire” spoken of here is the same as “the gehenna of fire” spoken of in the Sermon on the Mount. In Matthew 18:8,9, Jesus used the terms interchangeably: “If thy hand or thy foot causeth thee to stumble, cut it off and cast it from thee: it is good for thee to enter into life maimed or halt, rather than having two hands or two feet to be cast into ‘the eternal fire’. And if thine eye causeth thee to stumble, pluck it out and cast it from thee: for it is good for thee to enter into life with one eye, rather having two eyes to be cast into the hell (gehenna) of fire.”
In Revelation 20:9-10 most think a vivid description is given of the “end” of Satan and his host: “They went up over the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down out of heaven, and devoured them. And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where also the beast and the false prophet, and they shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever (age upon age)”, but this has to do with the reign of Christ!