I have often been asked the question, "How could a God of love send people to a real hell for all eternity?" Perhaps you have asked the question yourself. In our day and age, the love of God has been so emphasized that many people have lost sight of other equally important aspects of God's character, such as His holiness, justice, and sovereignty. For example, did you know that the Bible refers to God as a consuming fire?1 Were you aware that Scripture refers to Him as the One who dwells in unapproachable light, whom no man has seen or can see?2 The fact is, that God is absolutely pure and cannot look on wickedness with favor.3 Furthermore, the Bible teaches that God is perfectly just. If a human judge let a guilty criminal go free, he would be failing to fulfill his solemn responsibility. The guilty must be punished. Similarly, God as the judge of all the earth, will mete out just punishment to all who have rebelled against Him and broken His law. The Bible declares, "The Lord takes vengeance on His adversaries, and He reserves wrath for His enemies. The Lord is slow to anger and great in power, and the Lord will by no means leave the guilty unpunished."4 Furthermore, God possesses unlimited sovereignty. The Bible declares, "Our God is in the heavens; He does whatever He pleases,"5 and "He works all things after the counsel of His will."6 That is, He does what He wants, when He wants, how He wants, and to whom He wants. He is answerable and accountable to no one!

God hates sin, and will judge sinners one day, by casting them into hell. What is hell? It will not be a place where you party forever without having to worry about anyone spoiling your fun. Rather, it is everlasting, conscious punishment. The Bible describes hell as unquenchable fire,7 outer darkness,8 a furnace of fire,9 and a lake of fire.10 It also describes it as a place where people wail and gnash their teeth,11 where the worm does not die and the fire is not quenched,12 and where people are in agony in flames.13 Perhaps the most terrifying passage in the Bible describing hell says that men will "drink the wine of the wrath of God, which is mixed in full strength in the cup of His anger; and he will 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 goes up forever and ever; and they have no rest day and night."14

Jesus said that one day He will send forth His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom those who commit lawlessness, and will cast them into a furnace of fire where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.15 Did you notice who Jesus said would be cast into the furnace of fire? He described them as those who commit "lawlessness." Lawlessness is failing to live up to God's righteous standards stated in the Bible. Are you guilty of "lawlessness"? Jesus said if you have been angry with your brother or called him a fool, you are guilty enough to go into the fiery hell.16 The Bible says that if you hate your brother, you are a murderer, and do not possess eternal life.17 Jesus also said that if a man looks on a woman to lust for her, he has committed adultery with her already in his heart.18 The Bible teaches that if you love anything more than the God of the Bible, you are an idolater, and idolaters shall not inherit the kingdom of God.19 If you have ever told a lie, you are a liar, and the Bible says that all liars will have their part in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone.20 If you are envious of your friend's sport utility vehicle, personal computer, or custom built house, you are covetous and will not enter the kingdom of heaven.21 If you have broken even one commandment, then you are one of those "lawless" persons Jesus described. On Judgment Day, God will expose all your sins, and without a savior, you will end up in hell.

The God of the Bible, however, is not only a God of wrath; He is also a God of love. In fact, His love for sinners was so great, that He sent His one and only Son, Jesus Christ to this earth to save sinners like you and me from the punishment we deserve. Jesus lived a perfect life,22 and then voluntarily bore God's holy fury against our sins, in order that God might forgive us and receive us as His own children. When Jesus went to the cross, He died in the place of sinners by taking the punishment they deserved.23 In doing so, He satisfied the demands of God's justice, and at the same time demonstrated how much He loves us. Since Jesus is the only sin-bearer, He is the only One who can deliver you from the wrath to come.24 But the good news is that if you repent of your sins, and become a true follower of Jesus, God will forgive your sins and grant you the gift of everlasting life. "He who believes in the Son (Jesus) has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son (Jesus) shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him."25 Where do you stand with God right now? Do you possess eternal life, or does God's wrath abide on you? Are you a true follower of Christ or are you disobeying Him? The stakes are infinitely high. Don't foolishly gamble with your never-dying soul. Jesus Christ is worthy of all of your love, devotion and obedience. Commit your life to Him today, then read the Bible daily, and obey what you read. God will never fail you. If you would like a free Bible or more information on becoming a follower of Jesus Christ, contact us below.

  1. Hebrews 12:29
  2. 1 Timothy 6:16
  3. Habakkuk 1:13
  4. Nahum 1:2-3
  5. Psalm 115:3
  6. Ephesians 1:11
  7. Mark 9:43
  8. Matthew 22:13
  9. Matthew 13:42
  10. Revelation 20:15
  11. Matthew 13:42
  12. Mark 9:48
  13. Luke 16:24
  14. Revelation 14:10-11
  15. Matthew 13:41-42
  16. Matthew 5:21-22
  17. 1 John 3:15
  18. Matthew 5:27-28
  19. 1 Corinthians 6:9-10
  20. Revelation 21:8
  21. 1 Corinthians 6:9-10
  22. John 8:29
  23. 1 Peter 3:18; 2 Corinthians 5:21
  24. 1 Thessalonians 1:10
  25. John 3:36

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