Tuesday, February 13: NOT CREATED FOR PEOPLE
People have a lot of different beliefs about hell, and we are going to dig into what the Bible says about a few common questions about this place called hell.
Is hell a real place? Luke 16:22-24 says, “And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried; 23 And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. 24 And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.” Hell is a very real place that this man went to because he unfortunately never accepted Jesus as his Savior before he died. How should the reality of hell motivate us to witness?
How could a loving God send anyone to hell? Matthew 25:41 says, “Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels.” God created hell to punish Satan and the angels that followed him in his rebellion against God. God doesn’t want anyone to go to hell. That’s why Jesus came to earth and suffered such a horrible death on the cross. God made salvation so easy for us, but we do have to accept His offer of salvation through His Son Jesus. What are several things God has done to help people avoid going to hell?
Why couldn’t God ignore sin (and not send sinners to hell even if they don’t accept Jesus as Savior)?
There are things God can’t do. He can’t sin. He also can’t be unjust. A police officer who ignores a murder taking place would lose something of himself (would certainly no longer be a good, honorable officer). God would stop being God if He simply ignored sin.
So why did God create us with a free will (or even create us at all) if He knew we’d sin and many people would end up going to hell? God created us because He loves us and wants to spend time with us. While God doesn’t need us, He wants us to enjoy perfect fellowship with Him. If God had created a universe where sin and free will (the choice whether we obey God or not) didn’t exist, there would be no opportunity for love (a mindless computer certainly has no love for anyone). God created the universe in such a way that He can (and does) show love for us, and we can show love for Him by accepting His plan of salvation and by living the way He tells us to in the Bible. How has God shown His love for you?
What thought or verse do you need to meditate on and apply today?