Monday, August 29, 2016

Death Is Merely A Portal (Part 5 of 5)

What will hell be like? From the Bible, some words that might open the eyes of the
blind are; unquenchable fire, weeping, regret, gnashing of teeth, fear, despair, eternal punishment, away from God, tormented day and night, no rest, foul smelling, darkness, this is the second death. Most of these words can be found in the very, very few Scriptures I selected about hell found below.

And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” (Matthew 10:28)

“and throw them into the fiery furnace. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” (Matthew 13:50)

“And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.” (Matthew 25:46)

“And if your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life crippled than with two hands to go to hell, to the unquenchable fire. (Mark 9:43)

“They will suffer the punishment of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might, (2 Thessalonians 1:9)

“And the smoke of their torment goes up forever and ever, and they have no rest, day or night, these worshipers of the beast and its image, and whoever receives the mark of its name.” (Revelation 14:11)

“and the devil who had deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and sulfur where the beast and the false prophet were, and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever. (Revelation 20:10)

“And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire. (Revelation 20:15)

“But as for the cowardly, the faithless, the detestable, as for murderers, the sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death.” (Revelation 21:8)

The Bible has more to say about hell than Heaven. Jesus said more about hell than He did Heaven. The reason is obvious. God wants everyone to know just how terrible hell is. He does not want anyone going to hell. Jesus gave Himself as a sacrifice so that any who would come to Him through faith would be exempt from hell. There is nothing more He can do however, for those who refuse to put their faith in Him. No person will be able to blame anyone on judgment day except themselves.

What will Heaven be like? From the Scriptures we have covered and many we haven’t, several words can describe Heaven, such as; in the presence of God, no sin, no pain, no heartache, eternal happiness, laughter, eternal peace, eternal joy, total satisfaction, worship, beauty beyond description, safe, secure, and many more.

From what I read in the Bible, there still remains much, much more that we don’t know on this side of that portal we’ve talked about, but there remains much we can be excited about.

The Bible teaches that we will judge angels and nations. We will be placed in areas of responsibility, for example, in the Millennium.

One thing is for sure, we will not be floating around doing nothing.

“One of the Cretans, a prophet of their own, said, “Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons.” (Titus 1:12)

Notice that lazy people are classified with liars, evil beast and gluttons. No, we’ll have Heavenly bodies that are eternally energized and ready to do whatever our Lord asks. As an adult I sometimes notice the little young’uns with so much energy, thinking of myself, “What happened?” In Heaven our ‘batteries’ will never run down. We’ll be like the Energizer bunny.

I believe that we will traverse different parts of the heavens in our assignments given to us. We will be active on the new earth, the New Jerusalem and throughout God’s universe. Remember, unlike this earthly body suited only for earth, we will have Heavenly bodies suited for the heavens.

Are there other ‘beings’ of some kind in other galaxies? I don’t know, but I know that our God is a Creator. He likes to create. He created the angels, the universe, humans, animals, birds, fish, trees, mountains, water, grass, flowers, and on and on. Maybe there are other beings He hasn’t told us about, maybe not. We’ll find out when we get there.

Can you imagine the beauty of the New Jerusalem? There will be a New Heaven, a New Jerusalem and even a restored Eden. The New Jerusalem alone will be about two million square miles, which would equal about fourteen states of California. Will the earth be larger to accommodate this size? I don’t know, but if not, maybe the New Jerusalem will be above the earth as the sun and moon are today.

By the way, there will be no need of sun or moon. God has always said that He is the light of the world, and He will literally be just that.

The greatest thing about our exit from this world by death, going through that portal and entering Heaven is that we will be in the presence of God. Yes, we’ll be with our family members who preceded us, friends we knew, all the holy angels, even Abraham and Sarah, Moses, Ruth, Peter, Paul, etal., but nothing can top being in the very presence of God.

I can’t imagine the exhilaration in seeing Jesus. Read Revelation chapter one to see how much different Jesus will appear than when He came at His first advent. Some blasphemously think they’ll pat Him on the back and call Him, “O buddy,” but in reality we will fall on our face before Him. That is exactly what the Apostle John did and he called himself, “the one Jesus loved.” (John 20:2; 21:20)

“When I saw him, I fell at his feet as though dead. But he laid his right hand on me, saying, “Fear not, I am the first and the last, and the living one. I died, and behold I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of Death and Hades.” (Revelation 1:17-18)

Christians, from the mouth of our Savior and Lord, He says, “Fear not.” Jesus has “the keys of Death and Hades.” Let us not fear when the time comes for our body to die. Let us not fear when death is staring us in the face, and let us not fear what lies ahead. Jesus is in control. We are not alone, and when we pass through that portal, we’ll never want to return.

If you are not a Christian, there is nothing for you but an eternity of hell, literally, when you pass through the portal of death. While on this side of the portal, you can change that by putting your faith in Jesus Christ and following Him. Allow Him to be your Savior and Lord, because if you do not, He will be your Judge on the other side.

“And I saw no temple in the city, for its temple is the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb. But nothing unclean will ever enter it, nor anyone who does what is detestable or false, but only those who are written in the Lamb's book of life.” (Revelation 21:22, 27)

Those who know Jesus can say along with Paul, “And now the prize awaits me—the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give me on the day of his return. And the prize is not just for me but for all who eagerly look forward to his appearing.” (2 Timothy 4:8)

Sooner or later, excluding the Church at the Rapture, we will all meet who the world calls “the grim reaper” or “the angel of death.” However, this is not so for all those who know Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. When we breathe that last breath and step through the portal of death, we will be met by “Heaven’s Welcoming Committee,” the very Son of God, Jesus Christ, the One spoken of throughout the Bible we love so much. What a wonderful day that will be!

“And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.” (Luke 24:27)

Let me close in saying that we should never add to or take away from what has been revealed to us in God’s Word, the Bible. If it isn’t covered in the Bible, accept the limitations He has placed on us and move on.

“The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law.” (Deuteronomy 29:29)

“Now, brothers and sisters, I have applied these things to myself and Apollos for your benefit, so that you may learn from us the meaning of the saying, “DO NOT GO BEYOND WHAT IS WRITTEN.” (emphasis mine) Then you will not be puffed up in being a follower of one of us over against the other.” (1 Corinthians 4:6)

Grant Phillips
Pre-Rapture Commentary: