Text: Like 16:19-31; Mark 9:43-48; Matt. 10:28
1. Discuss idea that Luke 16:19-31 is a parable.
2. Some say, "I dont believe in trying to scare people into being saved." I do, for Jesus did.
3. Discuss all provisions made to keep man from killing you.
I. GENERAL FACTS ABOUT THE LIFE BEYOND
1. Every man has an immortal soul. I Cor. 15:45.
(1) Whether you want it or not, you have an immortal soul and are destined to live forever, You can blow your brains out but not your soul.
(2) Death cannot kill it. Thief on cross - Luke 23:43.
(3) The grave cannot hold it. Luke 16:22-23 rich man. Deut. 34:5-6; Matt.17:1-3 Moses
2. There are only two places that man has possibility of living in hereafter.
(1) Heaven and Hell are those two places.
(2) No other places are available. No Purgatory.
3. Each person will spend forever in one of these places.
4. Each person decides in this life where he will spend eternity.
(1) John 3:18. Already have ticket to hell.
(2) Heb.3:7. Today if you will hear his voice.
(3) Isa. 55:6 Seek ye the Lord while he may be found.
5. Since each person has an eternal destiny to decide in this life, is it not the point of wisdom to decide now?
(1) Wishing you did not have to decide wont change things.
(2) Desiring to escape hell and gain heaven wont get job done. Compare to trying to get married this way.
6. You say, "Ive never done anything bad enough to go to hell." By contrast you have never done anything good enough to go to heaven. Isa.64:6.
7. Every person who escapes hell must do so in spite of the flesh, world and devil.
(1) Luke 13:24.
(2) Matt. 7:13-14.
II. THE REALITY OF HELL
1. Questioned by the "good God" crowd.
(1) Their theory.
(2) Their theory refuted.
A. Sinners go to hell deliberately in spite of:
(a) Blood of Jesus
(b) Word of God
(c) Spirit of God
(d) This service
(e) Godly friends
(f) Preachers appeals
B. Sinners deserve to go to hell who turn Gods grace away so often.
2. Affirmed by Scripture.
(1) Psa.9:17. The wicked shall be turned into hell.
(2) Isa,5:14. Hell hath enlarged herself
(3) Isa. 14:9. Hell from beneath is moved for thee to meet thee at thy coming.
(4) Matt. 25:46. These shall go away into everlasting punishment.
3. There are three main things that carry sinners to hell. Mark 9:43-48.
(1) The hand - Mark 9:43-44.
A. It is so involved in world, you cant turn loose of it.
(a) Its pleasures.
B. You better amputate it than to hang on and go to hell.
(2) The foot - Mark 9:45-46.
A. It wants to go places and do things it ought not.
B. Jesus said you better amputate it than let it carry you to hell.
(3) The eye - Mark 9:47-48.
A. What eye does to lead to hell.
(a) Wanders after forbidden things.
(b) Reads magazines and watches movies that push conviction aside.
B. What must do to eye - pluck it out of way.
4. Matthew 10:28.
(1) Jesus said to fear the One who can cast soul and body into hell.
(2) Abandon all hope once you go there.
III. DESCRIPTION OF HELL - Luke 16:19-31.
1. It is a place entered through the door of death just like heaven is.v.23.
2. It is a place where rich man had time to look up. v.23.
(1) Before had looked out - on riches.
(2) Before had looked down - at Lazarus.
(3) Now has plenty of time to look up. Will you go to hell before you will look up?
3. It is a place where one cried out for mercy. v. 24.
(1) A plea for mercy is necessary to be saved. Luke 18:13-14
A. Many men and women go to hell because they are too proud to cry for mercy.
B. They dont intend to cry like a baby.
(2) In hell all cry for mercy but it is too late.
(3) This plea for mercy must be made at right time to right person.
A. Right time - now. II Cor. 6:2.
B. Right person - Jesus.
(a) Not father Abraham. Many think that because they had godly parents or companions, they can help them. Not so. See Matt. 3:7-9.
(b) But Jesus Christ - John 14:6.
C. Right terms - mercy not justice. You say, "If God will just give me justice, I will go to heaven. Consider Isa. 64:6.
4. It is a place of active and personal torture. v.v. 23-24.
(1) Some think that hell is just absence of Gods presence.
(2) Some reason that pain is over in 15 minutes.
(3) The Bible says that the torment lasts forever.
A. Rev. 20:10, 14-15.
B. Rev. 14:10-11. If you die today without Jesus, you have already had the last rest you will ever have.
(4) Men sin actively against God and they shall be punished actively in hell. Jesus would save you today if you would stop resisting His Spirit.
5. It is a place of bodily punishment.
(1) By thirst. v. 24.
A. Describe the awfulness of being thirsty here at times.
B. You say God is awful not to give one drop of water.
C. Not so. Now he offers you a living well. John 4:14.
D. Turn it down and you will remain thirsty in hell forever.
(2) By fire - in this flame. v. 24.
A. You cannot take the fire out of hell by wishing it.
B. You cant take the fire out of hell by saying, "I think this is figurative language."
C. You cannot take the fire out of hell by saying I dont believe God would do this.
(a) Gen. 19:23-25. Inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah tasted fire.
(b) Num.16:35. In Moses day 250 tasted fire.
(c) II Kings 1:5-12. In Elijahs day 102 tasted fire.
D. Reason for fire in hell.
(a) Isa. 43:7. Man is made to glorify God.
(b) Rom. 3:23. All have sinned and come short of Gods glory.
(c) John 3:3-5. All born again people can glorify God.
(d) In hell Gods glory comes in but it is in a dead-end street.
(e) Dan.12:3. Saints shall shine as the stars forever.
(3) By suffering.
A. Matt. 13:41-42.
C. Screams will be everywhere.
6. It is a place of memory. "Son remember." v. 25.
(1) Hell would not be as bad if memory could be shut out.
(2) The primary items that you will remember.
A. What it was like with you on earth.
(a) God was so good to you. "Thou in thy lifetime receivest thy good things."
(b) Gods goodness was aimed at bringing you to repentance. Rom. 2:4.
(c) Instead you took these good things for granted and felt that you did not need God.
i.. Ive got good health. What do I have to worry about?
ii. Ive got a good job. Im ok.
iii. Ive got a fine education. What do I need with religion?
iv. Ive got a fine family. Im well off.
B. What it was like with Lazarus (a Christian) on earth.
(a) Lazarus was sick a lot. I dont need that.
(b) Lazarus did not have much money. You dont need that state.
(c) Lazarus had to go to church all the time and listen to those long sermons.
(d) Every time Lazarus got out of line God chastised him.
(e) Lazarus was kicked around down here a lot.
(f) This evil condition for Lazarus and good condition for the rich man lasted a number of years.
C. What it is now like with Lazarus in Heaven.
(a) Now he is comforted; no more torment.
(b) Now he is honored. He is in Abrahams bosom.
(c) He is free from being pushed around by the world. He is no longer ordered around by the world.
(d) The chastening hand of God will never again be on him.
D. What it is now like with you in hell.
(a) Now you are tormented. No more ease.
(b) Now you have lost all authority. You cannot order anybody around.
(c) Now you have lost all chance at getting Gods mercy. Not one request he asked was granted.
(d) The worm will gnaw on him forever. Mark 9:48.
(e) This tormenting condition for you and comforting condition for Lazarus will last forever.
(3) Thus you will be reminded that your being in hell was your own reasoned choice.
A. If God forced you to go to hell without any choice, you could have some grounds of feeling you had been given injustice.
B. But to realize that you deliberately choose to go to hell will torment your memory even as the flames torment your body.
7. It is a place of no gospel invitations. v.26.
(1) There is a great gulf fixed.
(2) The significance of this gulf.
A. No Christian will ever again bother you by personal witnessing.
(a) Now you get sick and tired of people pestering you about being saved.
(b) You wish they would leave you alone.
(c) In hell they will. God does not allow us to come to your dwelling there to talk to you.
B. Never again will you be invited to make a public profession of faith in Jesus.
(a) Now you are tired of being pressured at invitation time.
(b) You have about decided to stay away until you get ready to come.
(c) Then you will come when you are ready.
(d) No, never again (after death) will you be permitted the opportunity of hearing a gospel message and be given the opportunity to respond to the invitation.
C. You had better consider these facts before you go there.
IV. SOME CONCLUDING STATEMENTS. v.v.27-31.
1. Send Lazarus to witness to my 5 brothers. v.v. 27-28.
(1) How does this fit in with idea: "I dont mind going to hell. All my friends will be there."
(2) People already in hell do not want you to come there.
(3) Nobody goes to hell alone.
A. Your family follows you there, wife, child, grandchild.
B. Your friends follow you there.
2. They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.v.29.
(1) The Bible.
(2) Gods preachers.
3. If people will not listen to Gods Word and Gods preachers, they are doomed.v.v.30-31.
SERMON BY DR. ESTUS PIRKLE - LOCUST GROVE BAPTIST
CHURCH - NEW ALBANY, MS - USA