Thoughts on Hell from the Hottest Place on Earth

1186903_28200330Today I’m apparently living in the hottest place on earth. With temperatures predicted to soar to 46 degrees Celsius it’s definitely a scorcher.

But you know what? Although it’s definitely hot, sitting in an air-conditioned house I’m hardly feeling it; I’m not being hit with the reality of 46 degrees.

This reminded me of a sobering passage from Jonathan Edwards’ famous 1741 sermon “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God:”

 

‘There is the dreadful Pit of the glowing Flames of the Wrath of God; there is Hell’s wide gaping Mouth open; and you have nothing to stand upon, not any Thing to take hold of: there is nothing between you and Hell but the Air; ‘tis only the Power and mere Pleasure of God that holds you up.

You probably are not sensible of this; you find you are kept out of Hell, but don’t see the Hand of God in it, but look at other Things, as the good State of your bodily Constitution, your Care of your own Life, and the Means you use for your own Preservation. But indeed these Things are nothing; if God should withdraw his Hand, they would avail no more to keep you from falling, than the thin Air to hold up a Person that is suspended in it.”

How great is the grace of God that holds us out of hell! And how fearful the day that He removes His hold from those who, by their own will, have rejected it.

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10 comments on “Thoughts on Hell from the Hottest Place on Earth

  1. Mark Myers says:

    I read that sermon recently. It’s a tough concept to grasp, but one that makes you overwhelmingly thankful for our good and great God.

    • sarsrose says:

      It is Mark, and I agree. It certainly packs a punch, but I find that there is something so soul satisfying about deep truth even if it is hard to take. Brings a lot of glory to God I think when we start to gain an understanding of our true state before him!

  2. Unknown says:

    Hello. Much can be said concerning this. As far as the existence of Hell goes, no where does the bible teach that men will burn forever in a conscious state. The Bible is quite clear in demonstrating that humans will cease to exist, they will be annihilated. Humans are not immortal beings to begin with, to think that we possess immortality as an inherent property is to fall for the original lie of Satan, “You shall not surely die.” The fact is that men are mortal, no aspect of them is immortal. The only way immortality is granted to an individual is in Christ Jesus. When the Bible speaks of ‘Hell’ it is actually speaking of Gehenna, which is Jerusalem’s garbage dump and there is also Hades, which is the grave.

    • sarsrose says:

      Hello again! I think we’re obviously going to differ on a few different points of theology!
      I am certainly familiar with the arguments that you present, and I assume you are familiar with those that differ to yours.
      I would be interested to see your scriptural backing for the annihilation of humans, the fact that the soul is not immortal.

      I assume you would argue that hades is the state/place of unconscious death for those who do not believe, that they will then be resurrected for judgement and then what? Annihilation?

      • Unknown says:

        Hello Sars.

        The bible plainly states that the soul can die as per Ezekiel 18:14, 20. The soul itself isn’t an immaterial immortal part of man that leaves the body once we die. The soul is the living breathing being. Genesis 1 starts out by using the Hebrew word for soul, which is ‘(nehphesh’, four times and all 4 times it’s in relation to animals (Genesis 1:20, 21, 24 and 30) Man is created to be a nehphesh, a living being – just as the animals were – but obviously we’re made in God’s image. If you’re interested in this study you can download this book for a read.

        http://www.robertwr.com/resurrection.pdf

        It’s tough to discuss this exhaustive topic on a message board. I believe that the onus rests upon the person saying that the soul is immortal to prove it. What evidence is there to suggest that the soul is immortal? Let’s take a look at the word immortal and its synonyms in the bible.

        Immortality is used 3 times in the bible: 1 Timothy 6:16, 1 Corinthians 15:53, 1 Corinthians.

        Incorruptible is used 7 times in the bible: Romans 1:23, 1 Timothy 1:17, 1 Corinthians 15:52, 1 Peter 1:4, 1 Corinthians 9:25, 1 Peter 1:23, 1 Peter 3:4.

        Incorruption is used 8 times in the bible: Romans 2:7, 1 Corinthians 15:42, 1 Corinthians 15:50, 15:53 and 15:54, 2 Timothy 1:10, Ephesians 6:24, Titus 2:7.

        In all of these accounts of immortality, not one of them speaks of the soul being immortal. The bible does on the other hand offer a huge account of the mortality of the soul. For example:

        Jos 11:11 And they smote all the souls that were therein with the edge of the sword, utterly destroying them; there was none left that breathed: and he burnt Hazor with fire.
        Deu 27:25 Cursed be he that taketh reward to slay an innocent soul… (An immortal soul can be slain?)
        Lev 23:30 And whatsoever soul it be that doeth any work in that same day, the same soul will I destroy from among his people.
        Lev 21:11 Neither shall he go in to any dead soul…

        This is a tiny bit of evidence given to show that the soul, the nehphesh, can die, be slain and be destroyed. Now as far as annihilation goes, only the righteous will receive eternal life for immortality is a gift given to the righteous, it is not bestowed upon the wicked.

        It must be demonstrated that the wicked are given immortality or are at least immortal to begin with to receive an eternal conscious punishment of fire.

        The unrighteous will be resurrected, judged by the Messiah and then the verdict of guilty will be given to them. Their punishment will be, for all eternity, death. Not once does the bible speak in terms of “the wages of sin is eternal conscious punishment,” The bible does however say that death is always the punishment for sin and the 2nd death is the ultimate punishment. Was it not the Serpent that first said “You will not surely die?” Sadly orthodox Christianity has believed this lie and thinks that humans are inherently immortal.

        There’s so much more to say on this. I will allow you to read it and ask your questions, object to statements and rebut what you think needs rebutting.

        In Christ Jesus 🙂

  3. Lets see, first I have to convert Celsius into Fahrenheit. So 46 C will equal about 116 F. Wow that’s hot! It’s very cold here. I did some reading on why it’s so hot where you are. They say it has something to do with cyclone winds from the west. Anyway, I hope you survive. Take care and stay where it’s cool–if you can.

  4. Unknown says:

    If Jesus experienced the wrath of God in the place of sinners, and that wrath for sinners is eternal conscious suffering (as far as its duration goes), how then could Jesus propitiate an eternity of wrath in a finite amount of time?

    • sarsrose says:

      Hi, sorry, I meant to get back to you on your last comment, but it’s such a huge topic that a quick response would not have sufficed and I just haven’t had time. I’m not an expert on it, but I have done some reading, and I’d encourage you to read some online articles that talk about how the scripture does teach of the existence of an eternal hell if you actually do really want to know the ‘other side’ of the topic.

      As for your question about Jesus’ death being finite and covering an eternal amount of wrath, I can give a short answer to that one.
      Jesus was God in the flesh, he was infinitely great and infinitely perfect. It was this nature of his that enabled him to pay for an infinite amount of sin. I’m not sure it was about the time spent under the wrath of God, that is relevant. I think Jesus stayed in the grave for 3 days for other reasons, NOT because that’s how long it took him to satisfy the wrath of God. I think God’s wrath was poured out on him, and it was his God-nature that enabled him to ‘consume’ the wrath and then defeat death. Any mortal person could not pay in that way because they do not possess an infinite nature.

      • Unknown says:

        Thank-you for your reply. Without sounding rude this is the traditional defence given to the question posed. But I must ask, where does the bible teach that Jesus’ “God-nature” consumed the wrath? I’m sure we can both agree that theological beliefs must be demonstrated with biblical evidence and not long held traditions passed on from previous generations. Which book(s), chapter(s) and verse(s) verify your statement as being true?

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