Grace and Hell Fire (#1028)
Good morning, wonderful to have you all here for another session on the grace of God. Today we’re going to talk about grace and hellfire. We’ve already covered grace and eternal life and salvation, but I’m going to dig a little deeper into the concept of hellfire because as you know the common perceptions throughout the world about Christianity, are that when you die, if you are a really good person, you’ll go to heaven, and you float around with angels with harps and life will be beautiful. And, if you’re a bad person, you’re going to go to hell, and it’s going to be fiery and there will be pitchforks and torment forever. And, neither of those concepts are actually in the Bible.
The heaven one is closer, because it says we will meet the Lord in the air and we will be with the Lord, and our bodies will be changed, so they are immortal and incorruptible. So, the idea of going up into the skies and living very well and happily for eternity, that’s much closer to reality. Although it is not exact, because we do come back with the Lord for the battle of Armageddon, and we do end up in the new Jerusalem, where there is a new heaven and a new Earth. So, it’s not quite the same of floating around in the sky forever. But that’s much closer. But the idea that you’re going to go somewhere, that anybody is going to go somewhere and be tormented in fire forever, that just can’t be supported from the scriptures. As you’ll see, the beast and the anti-Christ, it does talk about them being tormented for a long time, perhaps forever, but it doesn’t talk about anybody else. For everybody else, all it really says is they’ll be burned up, so that is what the word “perish” is used for. The word “die” just means you take your last breath and you body is dead. But the word “perish” means you are totally obliterated and wiped-out. It is the Greek word “apollyon,” which just means “completely wipe-out.”
But that won’t happen to us. It will happen to those whose names are not written in the Book of Life, at the final judgement. And, it doesn’t say anything about going down to hell and burning forever, it just says you’re basically disposed of. You’re thrown in the lake of fire, you burn up, and that’s it. But the idea of a place where torments occur, that is only mentioned once in the Bible and its in a parable written to the Pharisees, because that is what the Pharisee’s believed, so Jesus Christ was simply talking to the Pharisees in terms they would understand. But it’s not mentioned anywhere else in the Bible. So, we’re going to get into that a little bit today, and we’ll start in John 3:16…
As taught be Bruce Mahone, 20210912. All rights reserved.
Verse Listing and Notes
John 3:16 Should not perish (be totally obliterated)
Ephesians 2 By grace are ye saved – the gift of God (vs. 8)
I Thessalonians 4:13-18 We will meet the Lord in the air – so shall we ever be
Matthew 5:22 In danger of hell fire (Gehenna – originally the valley of Hinnom, south of Jerusalem, where the filth and dead animals of the city were cast out and burned)
Matthew 5:29-30 Cast into hell (Gehenna)
Matthew 10:28 Destroy both soul and body in hell (Gehenna)
Luke 16:19-31 Lazarus in Abraham’s Bosom [cf. Judges 9:7-16; Mat. 5:13-16. Some early Greek and Aramaic sources add, “And he said also another parable” to the beginning of Luke 16:19. Pharisees:“They also believe that souls have an immortal vigour in them, and that under the earth there will be rewards or punishments , according as they have lived virtuously or viciously in this life, and the latter are to be detained in an everlasting prison, but that the former shall have power to revive and live again” – Josephus, Antiquities of the Jews XVIII, i, 3. See also Luke 16:14-15; Acts 23:6-11.]
Revelation 21:8 Second death
Revelation 20:12-15 Judgement and lake of fire