By: William Andrew Dillard
As a small child, I cherished our family radio. It was a battery-powered unit with a copper wire antenna strung from one gable of the roof to the other. There were so many mesmerizing stories with excellent sound effects fueling a rich imagination. To speak of the vast programming would take more than one article, but even in those days “Dragnet” was popular, and I do believe Jack Webb was the radio voice of it then as well as later on T.V.
How well I recall one particular episode wherein a man committed robbery, and upon questioning he allowed the cause was his extreme financial need, noting that he only had $300.00 in the bank. That sounded like millions to me, and I was astounded. I turned to dad and asked him if we had $300.00 in the bank. He replied, as I knew he would, that we did not. Moreover he stated that we did not have a bank account of any sort. So, my question was: since we were doing so well with no money (actually we were quite poor, but so were our neighbors, so it did not bother us) why would a man with $300.00 in the bank commit a robbery?
Dad said there were many reasons for such, and all of them were bad. This man on Dragnet had what we thought was a tidy sum, but in his estimation, he was obviously poorer than we were. Of course, in those days heads of household often worked for $25.00 per week.
Dad taught me that the truly rich people were not those with large amounts of money, but those who knew the Lord, worked honestly for their wages, and lived in a house of love. He was so right! My uneducated, but wise in the Lord, and in life, father taught me a lot of solid principles and lasting truths that have not only benefited the pathway of my years; they continue to do so today. Chief among those things is to put God first, and He will provide the essentials of life for me and mine. Folks, that has never failed me. I would not turn my back on my Savior, His Word, or the hope He has given me for all the gold in every nation on earth. It, and all the kindred material things will pass away, but the Word of God abideth forever. I choose it not in acquiescence but in continued search, because that is the kind of Christian I am, and I am rich beyond the wildest of imaginations!
I, EYE, AYE: THE PROBLEM
Some sage once said, “A man wrapped up in himself makes a terribly small package.” While most would agree, they must also acknowledge that this very principle is the primary cause of all the woes of the race. Think with me about this!
Luke 12:16-21 records the sad saga of a rich fool. He abounded in the richness of his day. His barns could hold no more. Did he seek to be helpful to others? No! He said to himself, “I” have no more storage room so “I” will pull down my buildings and “I” will build bigger ones. “I” will say “I” have much to last for many years so “I” will take it easy, eat , drink, and be merry. Alas, he died that night, and not having lived for the Lord nor invested in the lives of others, left his goods to the wiles of the world; truly a fool! His kind has not perished, but increased in the world: folks with “I” trouble.
Additionally, the temptation that succeeded in plunging the entire human family into sin was one of “I” and “eye” trouble. Mother Eve in response to Satan’s self-serving appeal , saw that the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil was beautiful to look upon (lust of the eye); she saw it was good for food (lust of the flesh through the eye); and she saw it was desirable to make one wise (pride of life, “I” and “eye” trouble). There was no forethought here regarding the Word and Will of the Creator, just “I.” Although that was nearly six thousand years ago, little children still sing out the warning, “O, be careful little eyes what you see….”
Enter Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon. He was allowed to build one of the seven wonders of the ancient world: the magnificent Babylon with broad avenues, hanging gardens, and splendid structures. He said, “Is not this great Babylon, that I have built for the house of the kingdom by the might of my power, and for the honour of my majesty?” (“I” and “Eye” trouble). He was judged immediately and learned firsthand that these things were from, and for God. Daniel 4.
Finally, there is another form of that phonetic problem that plagues the people of God, and should be corrected by all means. It is revealed in the story of two sons, Matthew 21:28-31. A man directed one of his sons to go work in his vineyard. The son said “nay” (no), but he later did. To the other he gave the same direction, and that son said “aye” (yes), but never did. There are multitudes today who give acquiescent “aye” to the work of God, but never do it. They cannot imagine the enormity of the loss being incurred by such disobedience to their Heavenly Creator.
So, anyway you spell it, I, Eye, Aye, it is the sinful source of the ills of mankind in general and of each individual in particular. May God help us to have a sweet spirit of truthful, and wholehearted surrender to the will of God Whom we all must soon meet face to face, and not be beset by the ages old, universal problems of “I, Eye, Aye.”
Luke 16:19-31; Revelation 20:7-15
Penitentiaries and jails speak of man’s belief in the punishment of men for wrongdoing. Man believes the criminal should be separated from the law abiding. God also believes in separating the righteous from the unrighteous. Hell is a reality.
I cannot imagine a death more horrible than death by burning. The pain and suffering that has to be involved with this type of death is totally unimaginable to me. I would not wish this type of death on my worst enemy. What is worse, is the people that make light of dying and descending into a place of eternal burning and suffering; that place called HELL!!
Let us examine this place.
I. THE GREAT WHITE THRONE JUDGEMENT. (REVELATION 20:7-15)
1. The judge. John 5:22; “For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son.”
2. The subjects. (Rev. 20:12; Eph. 2:1-3). All who have never repented and trusted in Jesus.
3. Basis of judgement (John 20:13).
a. According to works (Rev. 20:13).
b. In the Great White Throne, judgement because of unbelief (John 3:18).
4. The reason for this judgement. That each unbeliever might receive his just part in the lake of fire (Rev. 21:8; Matt. 10:15; 11:24).
NOTICE THIS; The Great White Throne Judgement is not to determine whether one is saved and going to heaven or unsaved and going to hell. It is strictly for the unsaved/lost and determines how bad they were and all are cast into the lake of fire.
II. HELL IS THE FINAL ABODE OF THE DEVIL, FALLEN ANGELS, AND UNBELIEVEERS.
1. Origin of Hell and why (Matt. 24:41; II Peter 2:4; Jude 6).
2. Those in Hell.
a. The Devil (Rev. 20:10).
b. Fallen Angels (Jude 6).
c. Unbelievers (Rev. 20:13-15).
3. The final Hell (Rev. 20:13-15).
III. WHAT HELL IS LIKE.
1. A lake of fire and brimstone (Rev. 21:8). If this is figurative language, how awful the reality!
2. A place of torment. (Greek: odunaomai, mental and/or physical pain, agony, suffering, Luke 16:23.) Revelation 20:10: “Tormented day and night forever.”
3. Read Luke 3:17.
IV. HOW LONG HELL LASTS – ITS DURATION.
1. It is called an everlasting destruction (II Thess. 1:9).
2. It is said to be forever and ever (Rev. 14:10,11).
3. Figurative speech describes it as eternal (Mark 9:44, 46, 48).
V. THE STATE OF THOSE WHO GO TO HELL.
1. Their condition is final and there is no escape (Luke 16:24-26).
2. There is no future chance (Rev. 22:11; Eccl. 11:3).
3. Why they are there (Luke 16:27-31).
4. Those who go there remain in a conscious state (Luke 16:23).
VI. HELL, THEN, IS A DEFINITE PLACE OF REALITY, AND IS NOT THE GRAVE.
1. All of the foregoing scriptures teach the consciousness of those in Hell, therefore it could not be the grave.
2. Some questions with scriptural answers show that Hell is not the grave.
a. Are angels buried in graves? II Peter 2:4: “Cast down to hell.” Can this be construed to mean that they are in the grave? (Jude 6).
b. Are none but the wicked in the grave? Psalm 9:17: “The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God.” What about the righteous who die?
c. Can a man put another man in Hell? He could if Hell is the grave. Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather feat him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”
THE MOST IMPORTANT DECISION YOU WILL EVER MAKE IN LIFE IS WHERE WILL YOU SPEND ETERNITY.
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