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Degrees of Punishment?
How Can Hell Be A Just Punishment?
Is Hell Really Eternal Punishment?
Although it does not specifically say so, the Bible seems to indicate that there are different levels of punishment in Hell. In Rev. 20:11-15, the people are judged “according to what they had done as recorded in the books” (Rev.20:12). ALL the people at this judgment, are cast into the lake of fire (Rev.20:13-15), so it is possible that the purpose of the Great White Throne Judgment is to determine just how severe their punishment in Hell will be. But, in my opinion, being thrown into a slightly less hot portion of the lake of fire is no consolation to those who are doomed for to torment (Luke 16:23) for eternity. I do not know what degrees of punishment Hell does contain, but I do know it is a place I do not want to go.
BUT. . . unfortunately, the Bible tells us the majority of people will end up in Hell. Matthew 7:13-15 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: 14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. 15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. (KJV) . . . The question you must ask yourself is: “Which road am I on?” The “many” on the broad road have one thing in common . . . they all have rejected Christ as the One and Only Way to Heaven. John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. (KJV) . . . God CANNOT lie! And Jesus IS God! When He says that HE is the Only Way, that is EXACTLY what He means. Anyone who thinks they have a 'better' way, or an easier way, beside Jesus Christ is on the broad road to destruction (Hell)! The suffering, at any level, if there are different levels of punishment in Hell, will be dreadful, eternal and avoidable . . . believe this, if you are reading this. Once you are dead, you have NO more opportunities to choose the roads to eternity. I truly believe that God has granted us this life on Earth for us to make the greatest decision of a lifetime. Most people choose the broad road to Hell. May I suggest that it is not too late for you to get on that narrow road ton Heaven! Choosing Hell is utter stupidity!
The first thing to consider is that the doctrine of Hell is clearly taught in the Holy Word of God. The Bible seems to tell us that there are different degrees of punishment, so the suffering a person will experience shall be in proportion to their guilt and not the maximum amount they could experience.
Is Hell a just punishment? Absolutely! God is just and anything that He does is always right and just! (Gen.18:25; Ex.23:7; Num.14:18; Deut.32:4; Job 8:20; 11:6; 34:12; Psalm 9:8; 37:28; 75:2; 119:137; Isa.11:4; Eze.18:20; Rom.2:2; Rev.19:2). Check them out.
Is eternal punishment really never ending? What does the Bible say? (Isa.33:14; 34:10; 66:24; Mat.3:12; 18:8; 25:41; Mark 9:44; Luke 3:17; 2 Thes.1:9; Jude 1:7; Rev.20:10). ALL these Passages say punishment in Hell is eternal, everlasting, never ending, unquenchable!
Is eternal punishment unjust? Is it wrong? NO! Not according to our Almighty Creator God! Again, anything that He does is NEVER wrong. The vast majority of people do not believe they will go to Hell, an if they do believe in Hell, they do not think unending punishment is something that they deserve. Also, many people do not think anyone deserves that punishment. That is why all the damnable heresies about Hell.
The Bible does NOT teach Purgatory! There is NO such place where souls are sent to spend a short allotted time to pay for sins. 1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (KJV) . . . I have known Catholics who scrimp and save to get enough money to pay a priest to say mass for the departed soul of their loved one. And what comes to mind . . . what about all those poor folks who cannot even make it to the next paycheck? How long do those souls have to wait? RIDICULOUS!!! Damnable heresy! God does NOT do business like that!
Annihilation. And what about those cults who teach the doctrine of annihilation? Annihilated, either immediately after death or after experiencing a limited time of punishment. STUPIDITY!!! The Book that I teach does NOT teach this garbage! Damnable heresy!
Then there is the damnable heresy of universalism. My friend, that is absolutely FALSE! Everyone will NOT go to Heaven. In fact, the Bible teaches a very sobering doctrine, that MOST people shall go to Hell. Matthew 7:13-14 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: 14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. (KJV) . . . This is why I am so committed to the job God has given me. God does not want anyone to go there (2 Pet.3:9) and neither does this servant of God. I believe what the Bible says, and that is why I work so hard to expose false doctrines and false teachers. They will lead you to Hell! BEWARE!!! As long as the Lord gives me strength and wisdom and words, I will continue, for I KNOW I am right, no matter how many preachers email me to "back off"!
What Type of Punishment?
Hell is often depicted as a place of unquenchable fire. I do not think this fire is literal. I think fire and flame are symbols of God's judgment and Hell . . . and personally, I think that a symbol is just a little-bitty taste of the Truth and actual reality of Hell. The real Hell will be much worse than any symbol.
- Fire = Hell, judgment Mt.3:10
- Flame of fire = judgment Isa.29:6; Rev.1:14
- Flame = Hell Luke 16:24
- Flaming fire = judgment 2 Thes.1:8
- Verses on fire: Isa.33:14; 34:10; 66:24; Mat. 3:12; 13:30,42; 18:8; 25:41; Jude 1:7; Rev.14:10; 19:20; 20:10,15; 21:8
And too, Hell is also often described as a place of "darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth" (Mat. 25:30). I think the darkness is most likely symbolic of God's judgment and Hell, but that again is my opinion.
- Darkness = sin, evil, wickedness; the ungodly world. John 1:5; Eph.5:8
- Day of darkness = the Great Tribulation. Joel 2:2
- Verses on darkness: Job 15:30; Ps.35:6; 49:19; Pro.20:20 Amos 5:20; Mat.8:12; 22:13; 25:30; 2 Pet.2:4,17
The punishment of Hell that makes the most sense to me is found in the following Passage. 2 Thes. 1:8-9 In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: 9 Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power; (KJV) . . . Again, this my opinion. Being separated from a good God and all that is good, that to me would be HELL! What the everlasting destruction consists of, I would say that the answer of that is in God's Mind and Hands! I DO know that it certainly is NOT annihilation! WHY? Because everlasting means forever, a continual non-stop thing. This destruction of Hell is the constant presence and continuation of evil and wickedness . . . and the complete absence of ALL good for eternity. Just the opposite of Heaven! Rev. 21:27 And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb's book of life. (KJV) Rev. 22:14-15 Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. 15 For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie. (KJV) . . . Anyone cast into Hell, will have absolutely NO possibility of ever being reconciled to God. That is why it is SO important that you make the right decision while you live. AFTER death is judgment! NO second chances! NO exit doors! NO paroles! NO annihilation! NO purgatory! And certainly NO hope of the universalism heresy! Hebrews 9:27 And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: (KJV)
Again, I think that the idea of never to see the Lord Face to face, never to see His power and glory, never to receive His blessings, never feel His awesome Presence, never to be part of His amazing grace, never to again be a part of anything good . . . that would be a horrible destination in my book.
Them that know not God . . . These are those who refuse to know Him (Rom.1:28). And obey not. These are those who refuse to accept and obey the ONLY Gospel that can save them! Who shall be punished. Those who refuse to obey the Gospel shall be punished. The punishment is eternal destruction. This does NOT mean annihilation, but an eternal banishment from the Presence of the Lord. Matthew 25:41 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: (KJV) . . . the doom of the wicked is, "Depart from me." The saints are “ever with the Lord” (1 Thes.4:17), but the wicked are driven away forever from His wondrous Presence. PLEASE think about this.
Does the punishment of Hell consist of both physical and mental anguish or just mental anguish? Consider what the Bible says. Matthew 22:30 For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven. (KJV) . . . NOT angels, as many think or say or believe, BUT "as the angels" in our then being spiritual. 1 Cor. 15:42-44 So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption: 43 It is sown in dishonour; it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is raised in power: 44 It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body. (KJV) 1 Cor. 15:52-53 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. 53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. (KJV) . . . Again, it seems that the anguish of those in Hell shall be at least partly caused by their separation from the perfectly good and loving God.
One day God's TRUE children shall have sinless bodies like our Lord Jesus. Praise the Lord! Phil. 3:21 Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself. (KJV) . . . What kind of resurrected bodies unbelievers will have, I do not know, except that they will be fitted for the torments of Hell.
Does the punishment of Hell consist of both physical and mental anguish or just mental anguish? You be the judge! Consider the above Scriptures and the following as well! Luke 16:25 But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented. (KJV) . . . I am no scholar. I have little worldly education. I simply have studied and taught the Bible for many decades. I teach absolutely NO denominational doctrines of any kind. I teach the Bible and I expose false heresies and false teachers and self-proclaimed prophets. And as I have previously said, I cannot answer all questions. So . . . does the punishment of Hell consist of both physical and mental anguish? It may be both according to God's Holy Word. What I DO know is: You do NOT want even the slightest or smallest amount of punishment that Hell shall offer! BEWARE!!!
Degrees of Punishment
Most people never consider that there are degrees of punishment in Hell, just as there are degrees of reward in Heaven. Some Passages below show that there are indeed degrees of punishment in Hell.
Matthew 11:21-24 Woe unto thee, Chorazin! woe unto thee, Bethsaida! for if the mighty works, which were done in you, had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. 22 But I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the day of judgment, than for you. 23 And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted unto heaven, shalt be brought down to hell: for if the mighty works, which have been done in thee, had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. 24 But I say unto you, That it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for thee. (KJV)
Luke 12:47-48 And that servant, which knew his lord's will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes. 48 But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more. (KJV)
Judged According to Works
Matthew 16:27 For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works. (KJV)
Rom. 2:6 Who will render to every man according to his deeds: (KJV)
1 Cor.3:8 Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour. (KJV)
2 Tim. 4:14 Alexander the coppersmith did me much evil: the Lord reward him according to his works: (KJV)
1 Pet.1:17 And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man's work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear: (KJV)
Rev.2:23 And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works. (KJV)
Rev.18:6 Reward her even as she rewarded you, and double unto her double according to her works: in the cup which she hath filled fill to her double. (KJV)
Rev.20:12-15 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. 13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. 14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.
15 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire. (KJV)
Rev.22:12 And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be. (KJV)
It is NOT directly stated that a person's degree of punishment is based on the severity of their sins, but it IS implied in several places. It is also implied by the different degrees of punishment given for different sins in the Mosaic Law. Exodus 21:23-25 And if any mischief follow, then thou shalt give life for life, 24 Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, 25 Burning for burning, wound for wound, stripe for stripe. (KJV)
Deut.25:2-3 And it shall be, if the wicked man be worthy to be beaten, that the judge shall cause him to lie down, and to be beaten before his face, according to his fault, by a certain number. 3 Forty stripes he may give him, and not exceed: lest, if he should exceed, and beat him above these with many stripes, then thy brother should seem vile unto thee. (KJV) . . . This is a command about not punishing those who deserved to be whipped, with more lashes than is right.
Do all sins deserve the same punishment? The Bible does not seem to teach that as far as I understand it. YES! Absolutely, sin, any sin is hated by God, and any sin shall be punished by Him if the person has not accepted God's Escape Plan . . . JESUS! 1 Cor. 15:22 For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. (KJV)
ALL are destined to Hell without Jesus!
John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (KJV)
John 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. (KJV)
John 3:35-36 The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand. 36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him. (KJV)
John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. (KJV)
Acts 4:12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. (KJV)
1 John 5:11-12 And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12 He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. (KJV) . . . You either believe the Bible or be condemned to Hell.
Reasons For Unequal Rewards or Punishment
The Bible plainly pictures certain people being awarded unique and distinguished positions in Heaven. Rev. 15:3 And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvellous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints. (KJV) . . . I believe Moses was one of those 'certain people' who will have a reserved place in the Home of God. There will not be many who compare with this humble and obedient man. He will be highly exalted in Heaven.
Luke 16:19-31 portrays Abraham as having more prominence and authority in the after-life than Lazarus. My friend, this is just common sense! Mark 10:40 But to sit on my right hand and on my left hand is not mine to give; but it shall be given to them for whom it is prepared. (KJV) . . . When James and John asked the Lord to allow them to sit next to Him in glory, Jesus was very quick to straighten them out. Some glorified humans will occupy a place of distinction beside the Saviour . . . BUT that is NOT up to person to decide! Only the Lord shall decide that! That will be a unique and special place reserved solely for those who are chosen for that specific place.
Some argue against differing rewards by saying Heaven will be perfect and in that case, rewards cannot be improved or diminished. I personally think the principle of degrees of heavenly rewards is taught in Scripture, and that this should motivate every Christian. John 9:4 I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work. (KJV) . . . If this applied to Jesus, it should also apply to us.
Degrees of Eternal Punishment in Hell
SO . . . since there are degrees of rewards in Heaven, it is only logical that there will also be degrees of punishment in Hell. Several times, when speaking of eternal torment, the Bible mentions those who will suffer to a lesser or greater degree. And each time the punishment is in proportion to the opportunities missed or rejected. Those who are blessed with many opportunities to obey the Gospel and still boldly reject it, will receive a greater condemnation (judgment) than those who had little or no occasion to accept Christ. Jesus echoed this sentiment in His rebuke to the inhabitants of the cities of Bethsaida and Chorazin. Matthew 11:21-24 Woe unto thee, Chorazin! woe unto thee, Bethsaida! for if the mighty works, which were done in you, had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. 22 But I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the day of judgment, than for you. 23 And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted unto heaven, shalt be brought down to hell: for if the mighty works, which have been done in thee, had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. 24 But I say unto you, That it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for thee. (KJV)
. . . Jesus gave this rebuke to those Jewish cities where He had done much of His teaching, and performed miracles. Those people IN those towns had more opportunity to accept the Messiah than those living around them, yet they persisted in rejecting Him. The Gentile cities of Tyre and Sidon . . . known for their wickedness, would receive a lesser punishment at the Day of Judgment because they had not had direct exposure to Christ’s message and miracles. ALL would be punished, for ALL had rejected God’s law, BUT it would NOT be the same punishment. Hebrews 10:29 Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace? (KJV) . . . Think of the Bibles laying on shelves, covered in dust, that if opened could save the souls of the owners from eternal Hell.
2 Peter 2:20-21 For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. 21 For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. (KJV) . . . And what fate awaits unfaithful, backsliding Christians? Doesn't this Passage teach degrees of punishment? Peter is speaking about false teachers in this chapter. Some apostate teachers may have a head knowledge of Christ . . . but even if they may know about Him, they have NO love of the Truth (2 Thes.2:10). They reject what they once were taught and professed . . . thus becoming enslaved in the devil’s heresies and corruption. See our article: http://www.worldlychaos.org/w_c_apostate_christianity.1.htm
Many people say, “I’m a Christian.” These people think they are very religious. They belong to a church and attend regularly. BUT . . . they do NOT believe the Bible is really the Word of God. These people and these modern churches talk a lot about love and brotherhood and teach the damnable heresy of the Word Faith movement. They have a beautiful church and the pastor preaches a lovely sermon (?) that makes everyone feel good (2 Tim. 4:3-4). They think that they have escaped the pollutions of the world . . . but they have NOT escaped its corruptions.
Many have heard the Gospel, but they admit that they do not believe it. Some even doubt that there is a God. Many do NOT believe that Jesus is God, including some preachers who email me. Peter deals with the apostasy that was coming into the church through false teachers who were creeping in and teaching false doctrines, teaching that which is contrary to the Word of God (2 Pet.2:21; 3:17). Also for apostasy see: 2 Thes.2:3; 1 Tim.1:19; 4:1; 5:121; 2 Tim.4:4; Heb.3:12; 10:26). Peter says that they pervert the Truth of God, and they do it for their own advantage. So many rich preachers! What did Jesus have? Nothing! (Mat.8:20).
Another convincing argument for the idea of degrees of punishment derives from Jesus’ parable of the wicked servant. Luke 12:42-48 And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season? 43 Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing. 44 Of a truth I say unto you, that he will make him ruler over all that he hath. 45 But and if that servant say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming; and shall begin to beat the menservants and maidens, and to eat and drink, and to be drunken; 46 The lord of that servant will come in a day when he looketh not for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in sunder, and will appoint him his portion with the unbelievers. 47 And that servant, which knew his lord's will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes. 48 But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more. (KJV) . . . The meaning of the last part is very clear! ALL the wicked will be punished; but, those limited in their opportunities to learn about Christ will be punished less, “with fewer stripes” than those who knew the Truth and yet refused to obey.
Does the Bible teach degrees of reward in heaven? Yes, it does. Does it also teach degrees of punishment in Hell? Yes, it does. The good news, of course, is that Heaven’s offer of salvation is open to everyone (John 3:16; Rom. 6:23). No one has to go to Hell. When Christ went to the cross on our behalf (1 Tim. 2:4-6), He paid a debt He did not owe, because we had a debt we could not pay . . . WHY? So that we could live forever in the Presence of our awesome and Almighty Creator (Mat.25:46). God takes absolutely NO pleasure in the death of the wicked (Eze.18:23; 33:11). It is His will that none should perish (2 Pet.2:3). When I was saved from the eternal torment of Hell, I was so grateful that my compassion and concern for the lost became an extremely important issue to me.
When a person is truly saved, we SEE just how awful the hideous nature of our sin really is to God. We not only want to save ourselves from this evil generation, we want to reach out and tell others of our blessing. Acts 2:40 And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation. (KJV)
1 Timothy 2:3-6 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; 4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. 5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; 6 Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time. (KJV) . . . We should have sincere compassion about warning unbelievers of their impending doom.
Ezekiel 3:17-19 Son of man, I have made thee a watchman unto the house of Israel: therefore hear the word at my mouth, and give them warning from me. 18 When I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; and thou givest him not warning, nor speakest to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life; the same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand. 19 Yet if thou warn the wicked, and he turn not from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul. (KJV) . . . Just as Ezekiel was appointed a "watchman" over Israel, I believe it is the task of every TRUE believer today to be "watchman" over all those around them. There are not many who agree with me about this, and some times I am highly criticized for my exposing false doctrine and false teachers, but I take my job very seriously, and I shall continue as long as the Lord gives me strength, because HE has NOT told me to stop!
WHAT is the purpose of Hell? Is it to reform people? Is it to chastise people? Is it just to smack their little hand and say "Don't do that again?" Is it a place where people are sent until they repent? No way my friend! The purpose of Hell is for punishment. Those whom God casts into Hell will NEVER repent of any wrongdoing. Wrongdoing deserves punishment. People say that it is unfair for someone who lived a good life and was kind and generous to people to be punished severely. Too, it would be unfair for a cruel, evil person to be rewarded in the afterlife. God is absolutely just and righteous in ALL His dealings with believers and unbelievers. Everyone shall receive right judgment when they stand before the Almighty and Righteous Judge Jesus (Isa.9:6-7; 11:4; Dan.7:14; Mat.21:40; 25:32; John 5:22,27; Acts 10:42; 17:31; 1 Cor.3:11-15; 4:4; 1 Pet.3:22; Rev.20:10-15).
NO one deserving Heaven shall be condemned to Hell . . . and NO one deserving Hell will be permitted into God's Home, Heaven. THAT is FACT!
?Why Doesn't God Save Everyone?
Since NO one can earn, buy or work for their eternal salvation (Heaven) but are only saved by faith and God's grace . . . WHY doesn't God admit everyone into Heaven?
Since God is SO righteous and just in ALL His doings, and we as humans, like Adam, have fallen far from His grace, we would have to be in strict obedience to God. But like Adam, we ALL disobey God (Gen.2:16-17), and that death sentence pronounced all those years ago is upon us. But, there is ONE Way to have that death sentence revoked! Yet it seems most people simply refuse to go that route! For us to be in complete obedience to God, we must accept God's one and only Plan of salvation, and that is JESUS! Since Jesus is the ONLY One who was ever completely sinless (Isa.53:9; 2 Cor.5:21; Heb.4:15; 7:26; 9:28) and kept ALL the Commandments of God, we must believe and accept Christ Jesus and His Work on the cross for us, or we shall be condemned to Hell by God the Father. 1 Cor.1:30-31 But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God i s made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: 31 That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord. (KJV) . . . The ONLY Way we can achieve righteousness to please God the Father, is to get it from His One and Only Begotten Son! (John 3:15-18).
Ephesians 2:8-10 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them. (KJV) . . . God's grace, our faith!
Galatians 2:21 I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain. (KJV) . . . The only righteousness God will accept from us is what we receive through JESUS!
Ephesians 4:24 And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness. (KJV) . . . Jesus makes us a new person!
Romans 4:25 Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification. (KJV) . . . Jesus went to the cross to pay for our sins, and was resurrected so that we can be justified (Rom. 5:1).
Romans 5:6 For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. (KJV) . . . Christ died for ALL people.
2 Cor. 5:21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. (KJV) . . . God readily accepted Jesus' Sacrifice on our behalf, so that we could be made right with God through Him.
Isaiah 45:24 Surely, shall one say, in the LORD have I righteousness and strength: even to him shall men come; and all that are incensed against him shall be ashamed. (KJV) . . . In God's eyes, we are righteous ONLY through Jesus!
Baptism of the Holy Ghost
1 Cor. 12:13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. (KJV)
Ephesians 4:5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism, (KJV)
Ephesians 1:12-14 That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ. 13 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, 14 Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory. (KJV) . . . God’s purpose is that those who trust in Christ would bring praise and glory to God. When a person hears and accepts the Truth, the Good News that Christ saves you, He immediately places His seal upon that person. When you believe in Christ and accept what He has done for you, He identifies you as His own by giving you the Holy Spirit to abide with you "for ever" (John 14:16; 2 John 1:2), Whom He promised to give before His ascension into Heaven (Acts 1:5). The Holy Spirit is His pledge and guarantee that He will give to God's children the inheritance (1 Pet.1:4) that He promised and that He has purchased for us. He did this so we would praise and glorify Him. Charismatics in my opinion, believe falsely about the "baptism of the Spirit."
Some churches teach that the baptism of the Spirit is experienced after being born again. I CANNOT go along with that, NO way! They teach that it is a second experience that gives a person greater spiritual power and boldness. They teach that the baptism of the Holy Ghost is accompanied by signs as speaking in tongues and healing. Again, I CANNOT go along with that. I believe these gifts were for the early church only. They also teach that if you do not speak "in tongues" you are not saved. HOGWASH!!! Show me where Jesus, my Lord, ever said anything even close to that! It's NOT in there.
John the Baptist predicted that Jesus would come and baptize with the Spirit and with fire (Mat. 3:11; Mark 1:8; Luke 3:16; John 1:33). In Acts 1:5, Jesus told His followers that they would be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from then. The spectacular events of the day of Pentecost ten days later seem to be the obvious fulfillment of His words (Acts 2).
1 Cor. 12:13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. (KJV) . . . What is Paul's main point here? All TRUE believers share the SAME reality of being baptized by the Spirit. What does the baptism of the Holy Ghost do? It makes us part of the body of Christ, the Church. When does it happen? It is my humble opinion that it happens the moment you accept Christ and become born again into God's family. I believe that the "baptism of the Spirit" refers to the wonderful experience that God does for us the instant we trust Christ and enter His family!
Ephesians 4:30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. (KJV)
What must we do before this can happen? We must choose to accept God's grace, meaning to choose to love and accept Jesus as our Saviour and Lord. And it means we must be sincere in our decision. God the Father will NOT give us the Holy Spirit if we are pretenders! And friend, He KNOWS our heart and our thoughts! (Eze.11:5). We CANNOT fool Him!
Anyone who refuses to accept Christ Jesus are considered "wicked" by God and will NOT be permitted to live in His direct Presence. Evil cannot live in the Presence of God (Ps. 5:4-5). Anyone who refuses to accept Christ as Saviour and Lord are considered to be in a state of active rebellion against God.
Summary: HELL is NOT a Place You Want to go
Touch: pain from eternal burning fire
Taste: dry mouth, extreme thirst, blood from gnashing teeth
Smell: rotting garbage of Gehenna; rotten eggs, the smell of brimstone
Sight: smoke and fire; Gehenna or black darkness
Sound: moaning, weeping, crying, screaming
Links to other sites about degrees in Hell:
Hell, Degrees of Punishment in Hell?
Hell, God's Wrath, What Is It?
Hell, Judgments Come From His Holy Character
Hell, Judgments Come From Nature
Hell, Promises Fulfilled
Hell, Promises of Pestilence