Hell, part 2
Who will go to hell?
What will hell be like?Jesus described hell as a furnace of fire (Matt. 13: 42, 50) and a place of outer darkness, where there is weeping and gnashing of teeth (Matt. 8:12, 22:13, 25:30). He said it is better to lose a part of your physical body than to go to hell (Matt. 5:29-30). Hell is also described as a lake of fire:
Luke 16:19-31 presents a very graphic picture of hell. The rich man in hell was in torment (v.23), cried for mercy (v.24), and was thirsty (v.24). He was in agony in a flame (v.24) and he could remember what his life was like while he was living on earth (v.25). He was separated from the righteous (v.26) and realized he couldn't get out. He wanted someone to go warn his five brothers, who were still alive on earth, to not go to the place of torment (v.27-28).
It is a lake that burns with fire and brimstone (Rev. 21:8).
It burns with fire (Rev. 19:20, 20:10, 14-15, 21:8).
It is an eternal fire (Matt. 18:8).
It is an unquenchable fire (Mark 9:43,48).
How long will hell last?Hell is a place of eternal punishment (Heb. 6:2, Jude 7). Because it's not pleasant to think about a place of punishment from which there is no escape, some have invented their own ideas about hell. A couple of false views are Annihilation, which teaches the fate of the wicked is destruction rather than eternal torment, and Universalism, which teaches everyone will eventually be saved.
Isn't hell really the grave?Jehovah's Witnesses teach that hell is the grave. Let's substitute the words "the grave" instead of "hell" in the scriptures and see if it makes sense:
Obviously, hell is not the grave but a place of existence beyond the grave.
Isa. 66:24--They will look into the grave where they won't die and the fire isn't quenched. Matt. 8:12, 22:13--Cast into the grave where there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Rev. 20:10--Tormented in the grave day and night forever and ever. Matt. 25:41--The grave is prepared for the devil and his angels. Luke 12:5--Only God has authority to cast into the grave.
How can I keep from going to hell?No one has to go to hell. God desires for everyone to be saved (1 Tim. 2:4, 2 Pet. 3:9). Our sins have separated us from God and the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of eternal life is eternal life in Christ Jesus (Rom. 6:23). The blood that Jesus shed of the cross is the only way you can be cleansed from your sins (Heb. 9:11-12, 22). You can receive eternal life today by receiving Jesus Christ into your life. If you would like to know more about this, click here.