Deuteronomy 32 we find the song of Moses and it's a song warning the children of Israel about the consequences of sin and talking about his wrath and judgement that's going to be upon those who disobey him but the part that I wanted to focus on is in verse 22 where the Bible reads, "For a fire is kindled in my anger and shall burn unto the lowest hell and shall consume the earth with her increase and set on fire the foundations of the mountains."
What I want to preach on this morning is the subject of hell. Hell is a subject that I devote an entire sermon to at least once and here we are in the December of 2013, I realize that I've not yet preached the whole sermon on hell this year so it's about that time of year once again. Hell is a doctrine that is found throughout the Bible; Old Testament, New Testament and it comes up over and over again. The word hell itself is mentioned 54 times in the King James Bible but that's not to mention all the other references to hell that don't use the word hell. When it's just referred to as the bottomless pit or the pit or the furnace of fire or all the different other ways that God refers to the place of hell.
This is the first time hell is ever mentioned in the Bible. Deuteronomy 32:22 and we see so much about hell just from this one verse. It says in verse 22, "For a fire is kindled in my anger," that's the first thing we see. Then we see anger. Now hell is often associated with anger or wrath. God's wrath is what kindles the fires of hell and for example the Bible says in John 3:36, "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." We'll get to that more later but we see fire, we see anger and then it says, "and shall burn unto the lowest hell," so even just from that statement we get fire, anger, burning and we get the idea of hell being down. The lowest hell.
Then it says, "and shall consume the earth with her increase and set on fire the foundations of the mountains." Go if you would to Revelation chapter 14 and the first thing I want to show you about hell is that hell is a place of eternal punishment. Eternal damnation. Look at Revelation chapter 14 and verse number 10. The Bible reads in Revelation 14:10, "The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation ..." an indignation is again anger or wrath "... and he shall be tormented ..." tormented means basically tortured "... with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the lamb and the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever and they have no rest, day nor night who worshiped the beast and his image and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name."
This scripture is found in the context of the end times. This is right after we had the discussing about during the tribulation those who are not saved are going to be lining up to receive the mark of the beast in order that they might buy or sell and that no man will be able to buy or sell without receiving the mark of the beast. The beast is also known as the anti-Christ and those who dwell on the earth will worship him whose names are not written in the book of life for the lamb slaying from the foundation of the world.
A lot of people will take this verse and maybe say, "Well, this is just about people who take the mark of the beast." Unsaved people are taking the mark of the beast. Most unsaved people are lining up to get the mark of the beast. This verse applies to any unsaved person who goes to hell that their torment ascendeth up forever and ever and that they have no rest day or night. Also in Matthew 25, the Bible says, "depart from me ye cursed into everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels." A few verses down it says, "Thee shall go away into everlasting punishment but the righteous enter life eternal."
The doctrine of hell is under attack today. There are a lot of people who don't believe in it and increasingly this doctrine is being questioned and a big reason why is that new modern Bible versions are slowly eradicating hell from their Bible or removing this doctrine or changing this doctrine. We saw the first mention in Deuteronomy that mentioned fire, anger, burning. We're almost to the end of the Bible in Revelation 14 and we're seeing the same concept; burning, fire, anger. There is no question to a Bible-believing Christian with a King James Bible what hell is. It's not a questionable doctrine but to those who are unbelieving, who don't have faith in the perfection and inveteracy of God's word this doctrine is up for grabs.
I want to focus today on the Old Testament scriptures on hell for the simple reason that the modern Bible version ... whether it be the ESV or the NIV or whatever the Bible of the month club is signed up for this month. They completely remove the word hell every single time it occurs in the Old Testament. Did you know that? If you have an NIV, the word hell doesn't even occur once in the whole Old Testament. If you have an ESV, it doesn't even occur one time.
I remember when I was in community college, just a secular community college when I was fresh out of high school, I took a class that was on Western civilization and this is from the ungodly. This is from the atheistic, godless public school system and I sat in this community college in a western civilization class and we got on the union on Christianity and went through Judaism and Christianity and they tried to tell us that hell was not an Old Testament doctrine. That it's something that was invented by new Testament Christianity.
If you don't believe the Bible is God's word, you believe that the God of the Old Testament is different than the God of the New Testament but if you're a Bible-believing Christian you must believe that the same God of the Old Testament is the same God that we have today living under the new covenant. There is no difference. If you say that there is difference between the God of the Old Testament and God of the New Testament, just say, "I don't believe the Bible. I believe it's all man-made and the people who wrote the Old Testament said one thing about God and the people who wrote the New Testament said something different about God."
Look, we believe that all scripture was given by inspiration of God. It's not of any private interpretation. Holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost therefore every word of the Old Testament is true and every word of the New Testament is true and if both of the represent absolute truth then they must agree, they must be consistent.
Hell is a pretty big concept. It's a pretty big doctrine to be completely left out of the Old Testament and the world, this is what they want to teach you and the community college is going to tell you, "Hey. Hell wasn't even taught by the Jews. Hell wasn't even taught. That's something that Jesus and Apostles came along and they got that from Greek mythology." That's what the line is today and of course these modern Bibles aren't helping by removing hell completely from the Old Testament every time it occurs and that's what these professors are looking to because of their scholarship and education.
I don't see an inconsistency whatsoever between hell of the Old Testament and hell of the New Testament and that's what I want to show you but before we get in the Old Testament scriptures, let's just get some characteristics of hell from the New Testament. We saw that it's everlasting punishment. We saw that it is everlasting torment. It's always associated with fire. Turn if you would to Matthew chapter 5. Let's look at hell throughout the New Testament. Let's get a New Testament picture of what hell is and then let's look at the Old Testament picture of hell and it's going to be the same thing folks. Hell is hell and there are a lot of people who don't believe in it.
Seventh Day Adventists don't believe in literal hell. The Jehovah Witnesses don't believe in hell. The Mormons today do not believe in a literal hell. These cults, these false religions that started up in the 1800s with all this modern scholarship and archaeology, they reject the doctrine of hell because they were started at that time. Seventh Day Adventists, Jehovah false Witnesses, Later Day Satan ... whatever. All of these churches but also today amongst the new evangelicals, there are a lot of people who are starting to get away from the doctrine of hell, reject the doctrine of hell.
Who's ever heard of Rob Bell. He's this faggotty little ... Did I just say that? He's this queer little sissy of a preacher who says that hell is not eternal. Everybody ends up going to heaven. He wrote a famous book called Love Wins about how everybody is going to end up in heaven and he is not the only one folks. This modernistic, liberal, soft, effeminate Christianity of the mega-churches is today either number one rejecting the doctrine of hell completely like Rob Bell or they're tantamount rejecting it because they never preach about it.
It doesn't do you any good to believe in hell on a statement of faith somewhere in a back office somewhere. If you never get up behind a pulpit and teach about hell and if people don't read hell in their modern softened version. I remember when I was a teenager ... this is one of the big things that got me out of my liberal church when I was a teenager. When I was 16 years old, I'd spent the last 4 years going to churches that preach in the NIV, the rock n roll, soft, 20-minute sermon crowd and I went there for about 4 years and when I was 16 years old, God laid upon my heart, "Read the Bible cover to cover," and I believed that I needed to read the Bible cover to cover, I'd never done it and I knew that I just don't know what the truth is for myself unless I read it myself and I challenge you, if you're here today and you've haven't read the Bible cover to cover you need to make that your goal for the new year of 2014. Forget your diet plan and your exercise plan. You need to exercise yourself on a godliness. You need to get a Bible reading plan and you need to read through the Bible cover to cover and start now. Get a head start on it and get that done in 2014.
It will change your life. It changed my life and I remember I started when I was 16 and the first thing I did was I crossed off every book that I knew for sure that I'd already read. I knew that I read Matthew, I knew I read certain books but any book that I ... I knew I read Genesis, Exodus. I knew that I had quit part-way through Leviticus. It's good to just go through ... and when I say I knew for sure, I mean I knew for sure. Not well I think I read this. If I thought I read it, I read it again but I made sure and I only marked out the books I knew for sure that I'd read and I decided to read the rest of the Bible and to finish it.
I started when I was 16, I finished when I was 17 and I read it 4 times a year, every year after that. 4 times every year for many years. It was my Bible-reading plan. When I read through it the first time, I noticed that what I reading in the Bible was completely different from the type of preaching that I was hearing in church and one of the main things that I noticed was that the Bible talked a lot about hell and I remember going to my dad and saying, "Dad. I'm reading the Bible and it keeps talking about hell over and over. Jesus is preaching about hell, the Apostles are preaching about hell All about hell." I said, "I think we've been at this church for 2 years now and I don't think the pastor has ever even said the word hell in the last 2 years," and he said, "Yeah, you're right." Then he said, "I've got a sermon you're really going to like."
He dug out this old sermon from the 1960s by a guy named Glen [Shank 00:12:18] called the Halls of Hell and it was on a record so we got out a record player and plugged it in and we put this record on and we listened to this sermon, The Halls of Hell and we were like, "Wow. This is a great sermon." I've never heard this kind of preaching and then we gave the sermon to the pastor that never preached on hell and we converted it to a cassette for him and we gave him that cassette tape and said, "You need to listen to the sermon," and my dad [finally asked him 00:12:47], "Why do you never preach on hell," and he said, "Well, I know I should but I just don't like to." Then sit down and shut up and let's get a real man of God in the pulpit who doesn't preach what he likes, he preaches what the Bible says. Not what he likes or what people like.
I preach on hell. I touch on hell in a lot of sermons. It's something I talk about every time I go soul-winning for sure. Let me tell you something, I make sure that I at least devote an entire sermon per year to hell ... at least. Go back over our church website. I think I preached 12 whole sermons on hell. They all have a different title. The Fires of Hell, The Gates of Hell, The Punishment of Hell, Eternal ... I'm running out of titles but I'm here to tell you that not only is the doctrine being attacked by false theology, it's also being attacked just simply by the fact that it's just not being taught. It doesn't do you any good to believe in it if you don't talk about it, if you never preach about it, if you never hear about it. There is no teaching on hell and because there is no teaching on hell, a lot of people don't understand hell, they don't have a doctrinal basis for what hell is.
Let's get this from the New Testament and then let's compare it to the Old. Matthew 5:22 says this, "But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire."
Now, notice. The first time hell is mentioned in the New Testament is right there with fire. Any preacher who says, "I don't know if there is fire in hell," is going there. He's a liar. He doesn't believe the Bible because the Bible is real clear about this, it's hell fire. When he's mentioning some sins here, it's a sin to be angry with your brother without a cause. It's a sin to say an offensive word; Raca ... it's not something that we throw around today ... but just some offensive curse at your brother Raca or to say to him, "Thou fool," just to basically provoke somebody, get in a ... and there are people who do this. They just pick fights with people and whatever and he's saying it's a sin and any sin will send you to hell. Even lying. Just telling a lie.
The Bible says whosoever maketh a lie will be outside of heaven and will go to hell but that's where Jesus Christ comes in. We've all lied, We've all sinned, we've all said Raca a time or two or something equivalent but that's why we're forgiven by the blood of Jesus Christ. That's our salvation.
Look at verse 29. It says, "If thy right eye offend thee pluck it out and cast from thee for it profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell and if thy right hand offend thee, cut it off and cast it from thee for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish and not thou body should be cast in hell."
The first mention of hell we have hell fire. The second and third mention of hell he is saying that it would be better for you ... you'd be better off ripping out your own eye or chopping up your own hand than to go there. That sounds like a pretty bad place and he's warning people about hell.
Look at chapter 10 of Matthew, "And fear not them which kill the body but are not able to kill the soul but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell." Again going to hell is worse than being physically killed. It's worse than having your hand cut off. It's worse than having your eye plucked out. It's fire. It's eternal torment.
Jump forward to chapter 18. While you're turning there I'll just let you know that in chapter 11 we learn that hell is again downward. He talks about people going down to hell. We learn in chapter 16 that the gates of hell shall not prevail against the church and the reason that's significant is because he talks about the keys of the kingdom of heaven and the gates of hell. A contrast being made. Heaven and hell. In the Old Testament that contrast is often made. Heaven or hell. Those are the two options for those who die.
The Bible says in Matthew 18:9, "and if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out and cast it from thee. It is better to enter into life with on eye rather than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire."
Turn to Matthew 23. Just a few pages to the right in your Bible. It says in Verse 15, "Woe onto you scribes and pharisees hypocrites for you can pass sea and land to make one cross the light and when he's made you make him too fooled more the child of hell than yourselves." Jump down to verse 33. "Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers. How can you escape the damnation of hell." Here we learn that hell is damnation or condemnation is the word that we're probably more familiar with in 2013. It's a place of punishment. It's a place where we are condemned to as a result of our actions. It's where our sins condemn us or damn us. That is hell.
He calls them vipers and serpents. Why does he call them that? Because if you can remember the serpent is a name for the devil and the serpent was the one who deceived Eve in the garden of Eden and so when he says, "You serpents," he's referring to them as deceivers. He is telling them, "You're a child of hell. You're a child of the devil. You are a serpent. You are a deceiver." We're going to skip the references in Mark because honestly they're a little bit redundant with what we saw in Matthew. No, let's not skip him. Go to Mark chapter 9 because honestly, let's just get it all. Let's just see it all. Mark chapter 9.
While you're turning there I'll just let you know that in Luke 10 it talks about again being thrust down to hell. Again in Luke 12:5 it says pretty much the same thing about not fearing them. They kill the body but it says, "I forewarn you whom ye shall fear. This is a warning. Fear him which after you have killed hath power to cast into hell. Ye I say unto you, fear him."
Look at Mark 9:43, "If they hand offend thee, cut it off. It is better for thee to enter into life maimed than having two hands to go in to hell" ... I lost my place here ... "into the fire that never shall be quenched." I've got to turn there. I'm sorry. It says in the next verse, "where the worm dieth not and the fire is not quenched and if thy foot offend thee cut it off. It is better for the to enter whole into life than having two feet to be cast into hell into the fire that shall never be quenched where the worm dieth not and the fire is not quenched and if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one than to have two eyes to be cast into hell fire where the worm dieth not and the fire is not quenched." There is a reason why Jesus repeated that three times.
"A scribe made an error here and he just got carried away and just kept repeating that phrase over and over again. He's like a broken record." Wrong. Jesus repeated it because he wanted to warn you that fire and hell go on forever. It's a fire that never shall be quenched. Listen Rob Bell, there is never going to be a day where the fires of hell go out and we all love each other and hold hands. Wrong. God's punishment, God's wrath, hell and damnation are eternal. They go on forever. There is no end of it. To reject this doctrine is to reject the word of God. It's to reject the gospel. The good news is that we're saved from death and hell.
The Bible is pretty consistent over and over again. Lets jump past Luke 9, 10, 12. Lets go to Luke 16; The famous passage about the rich man and Lazarus. Luke 16. A lot of people will say about this story. They'll say, "Well, it's a parable." Okay, let's say it's parable. So what. What about all the other hundreds of places where the Bible says that the wicked are going to burn in hell. Where you're going to be in fire that never shall be quenched and if it's a parable, what's the parable trying to teach us. Parables represent something. You got the parable of the sower. The sower sows the word and as he casts the seed, some of it falls end of the wayside, a hardened ground. The fowl of the air come and they eat up the seeds that are sown. Some of it falls among thorns and the thorns choke it when it tries to grow up. That represents. We're sowing the word of God.
What's the fire represent? What's the guy who is burning represent? What's the guy who is begging for water to put on his tongue represent? Just a thirst for God. That has zero basis in scripture anywhere but there is a lot of basis for people burning in hell. All different scriptures, all different places. Just to write it's a parable. Okay, expound it to me. They can't. They just say it's a parable. Let's move on. They can't expound to you the meaning of the burning and the flames and the torment and so forth.
Not only that, if it is a parable, it's the only parable that uses a person's name because know every other parable is just anatomy, just a certain man, a sower, a husband man. This actually says in verse 19, "There was a certain rich man," well, we don't have his name. Okay, but keep reading. "which was clothed in purple and fine linen and fed sumptuously everyday and there was a certain beggar named Lazarus." That is significant because when you're naming a name, that's a real person who existed. God doesn't just make up fictitious characters that never existed. He could say, "It's like a guy who does this and that." But when he says, "There was a guy named Lazarus," it's a true story. It really happened.
It says, "There was a certain beggar named Lazarus which was laid in his gate, full of sores and desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table. Moreover the dogs came and licked his sores and he came to pass," verse 22, "that the beggar died and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom. The rich man also died and was buried and in hell he lift up his eyes being in torments and seeth Abraham a far off and Lazarus in his bosom. And he cried and he 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."
God could not tell us more ways that it's fire. Fire, flame, burning. How else does he have to express it? I believe that God of course knows the end from the beginning. He knows the future, he knows all things and it seems like every heresy God has already built in all the proofs against it. For example, evolution is a pretty new doctrine. 1800s, Charles Darwin; The Origin of The Species and the preferment of what preferred races. Nobody reads the whole title of the book.
The book by Charles Darwin is called "The Origin of the Species ... and then something something ... of The Preferred Races," because a lot of his doctrine was about the fact that black people ... and even today they always teach you. Well, humans started in Africa and they'll tell you that black people are lower evolved than white people. If you believe in evolution, these are the architects of evolution. People who taught that black people ... and part of it was because they wanted to treat black people differently. They wanted to abuse them as slaves and whatever so they taught that black people are less evolved and that's what Charles Darwin taught and it's even on the title of the book.
That's a new doctrine yet God already built in the answer in Genesis 1 when he said really redundantly, "Everything brought forth after his kind. The fruit tree after his kind. The tree yielding fruit after his kind. The beast of the earth after his kind. Every fowl after his kind." Just everything bringing forth after his own kind. People in the 1700s are probably thinking, "Why does God keep repeating this? After his kind. We get it. Okay. All right. It's after his kind," but he knew evolution's coming. There it is. There are so many things like that in Bible and obviously God knew there were going to be people out there who question whether hell is real fire so he says, "Okay, let's put flame, burning, fire, furnace." Pretty much every derivative of fire, every derivative of anger, every derivative of these type of words is used just to make sure you get the idea and people still reject it.
Where were reading? Where did we leave off? 24? Look at verse 25, "But Abraham said, "Son, remember that thou in thou lifetime receives thy good things and likewise Lazarus evil things but now he is comforted and thou art tormented. Beside all this between us and you there is a great gulf fixed so they which would passed from hence to you cannot, neither can they pass to us that would come from thence." Then he said, "I pray to you therefore father that thou would send him to my father's house for I have five brethren that he may testify unto them less they also come into this place of torment." Abraham sayeth onto him, "They have Moses and the prophets. Let them hear them." And he said, "Nay, father Abraham but if one went onto them from the dead they will repent," and he said onto them, "if they hear not Moses and the prophets neither will they be persuaded though one rose from the dead," and one did rise from the dead. His name is Jesus Christ and the Jews who even saw that he rose from the dead still didn't necessarily believe on and even when they saw Lazarus ... a different Lazarus ... raised from the dead in John chapter 11. They went their way to tell the Pharisees so that they could plot to kill Jesus Christ.
We see in this passage that it's a place of torment. Even the guy who is burning in hell cares enough that he doesn't want his family to be there with him. He doesn't want his family to come there. He hopes that he never sees his family again because he doesn't want them to come to the place of torment. He's just begging ... and I wonder how many people in hell today would love for you to give the gospel to their loved one who is still alive out on soul-winning. Out door to door, preaching the gospel to every creature. You could an answer to prayer to someone who is too late for them but they want someone to come tell their loved one how to be saved.
We don't need to go perform a miracle folks. They have Moses and the prophets. Let's take Moses and the prophets and let's preach the word of God and get people saved and if they don't hear this, well they're not going to be persuaded no matter what. It's the word of God that produces faith, faith cometh by hearing and hearing by hearing the word of God. Let's go forward to Revelation ... I'm skipping some for sake of time but go to Revelation chapter 20. There are few other mentions of hell in James 3:6 we have the fire of hell. Second Peter 2:4; down to hell. Revelation 1:18; the keys of hell and of death Jesus Christ holds those but let us go to Revelation 20 and again I'm just showing you New Testament mentions of the word hell. Not to mention Matthew 13 when it talks about, "so shall it be at the end of the world that Jesus Christ will gather out of his kingdom all things that offend and them that do iniquity and shall cast them into a furnace of fire. There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth."
Let me explain something to you. People who are dead do not gnash their teeth. People who are just ... because a lot of people who were just trying to say, "Hell is just the grave." It's what the Jehovah false Witnesses will teach, it's what the Seventh Day Adventists will teach. "Hell is just the grave." Look, when you're in the grave you're not gnashing your teeth. You're not weeping and you're definitely not wailing. You know what wailing means? If you have kids you know what wailing is. When we're upset we cry, we weep. When children are upset they wail. it's just a whole other level of crying and when you look at children and the wailing I often say to my wife, "What would it take for you to wail like that? You'd have to go through some really extreme sorrow," but to them it's "my sucker fell on the sand," and you know the wet sucker hit's the sand and it's just covered in sand now, all the sand sticks to it. For us to weep like that and to wail like that it would be the death of a loved one, it would be something really extreme. To them it's "my sucker fell in the dirt." Okay and there's no water to wash it or whatever.
Where are we at in the Bible here? Revelation 20? Here is one of the first verse I ever memorized this. I memorized this as a tiny little kid. My parents had it written in the back of the Bible as a verse to prove that hell is eternal and I memorized this verse when I was a tiny little child. It says in Revelation 20:10, "The Devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone where the beast and the false prophet are." Does it say where the beast and the false prophets were? Keep in mind. This is post-millennium. This is after the thousand-year millennium. The beast and the false prophet were thrown into the hell at the beginning of the millennium in Revelation 19. Then the thousand-year reign of Christ goes by and it says that the beast and the false prophet are still there. They've been there for 1000 years at this point, "and shall be tormented day and night forever and ever."
Jump down to verse 14, "and death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death and whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast in the lake of fire." Let me take a moment before we go to the Old Testament verses and talk about the fact that a lot of people try to make a really big deal out of the fact that there is hell that's now in the center of the earth ... Down into hell, descending into hell, the lowest part of the earth hell ... but then there is also hell that's referred to as outer darkness or the lake of fire.
Now that place ... the lake of fire or outer darkness is the future home of hell. At this time, hell is located in the center of the earth. That's where hell is. Anybody who is not saved who has died is in hell. They're in the lower parts of the earth. They're in the depths of the earth but at the great white throne judgement in chapter 20, death and hell will deliver up the dead which are in them and the dead will stand before God and be judged by their works and then the dead will be cast into the lake of fire but the lake of fire is also called hell.
In verse 14 when it says death and hell were cast into the lake of fire, those who don't believe in eternal hell will say, "see that's where hell is just being destroyed." No. This is where hell is being relocated. When hell is cast into the lake of fire. We have two different places. There is the place in the center of the earth and the heart of the earth right now. What characterizes that place? Fire, screaming, darkness, pain, suffering, torment. Okay. Then there is the future place. After the white throne judgement because the new heaven and the new earth are going to be created and the new earth will not contain hell. Now hell is going to be in outer darkness. It's going to be in the lake of fire. Different place.
What characterizes the lake of fire? Fire, brimstone, darkness, torment, weeping, wailing, gnashing of teeth. Look. Do we need to make some huge big deal about the difference between these two places? Do they sound that different? Our King James Bible refers to both places as hell. You say, "How do I know? How do I know which one it's talking about? I'm going to have to go back to the Greek. I don't know which one it's talking about." No because here is it. When it says down, which one are we talking about? When it talks about people being there right now, which one is that? When it's talking about people in outer darkness. There is nothing outer about the inside of the earth. You can tell from the context. It's not that complicated.
A lot of people make a big deal out of this and they criticize the King James Bible. "That's two different words of the original Greek and you are combining them into one." So what? We combine agape and feleo into love. So what? Get over it. We're speaking English. Look, if I were to ask somebody today and by the way, when it comes to the definition of words, they change over time. words mean what people think they mean. If 99% of people in a certain country use a certain word to mean a certain thing, then that's what that word means in that language. If we were to ask 99% of people what is the place called that's down in the center of the earth, people are burning and they're in torment and suffering? What's that place called? They're going to say that place is called hell. Then I say, okay. What's the place called where people are going to be for all eternity, it's outer darkness, its weeping, wailing and gnashing of teeth? They're also going to call that place hell.
In English we use the word hell to express both places. What the modern Bible ... and by the way, this isn't unique to the King James. How about every single English Bible before the King James did the same thing. How about every single English Bible because it's the English language word for those places is hell. You know what, okay. The Wycliffe Bible, Tyndale Bible, The Bishops Bible, The Geneva Bible, The Matthew Bible, The Coverdale Bible, The Great Bible. Every English Bible in existence before this book all did that. It's hell but now these Modern perversions of scripture come along, such as the NIV, the ESV, the HIV, the SUV whatever. All these new versions come out and all of a sudden they want to just say, "Well, that's not hell." They want to change it to Hades and they'll say, "This is Hades and this is hell and ..."
Hades is not an English word unless you're referring to Greek mythology. Now they're trying to change it into an English word and they're creating a new word but what they're also doing when do that is they're changing doctrine because they're trying to say, "Hades is not necessarily a place of fiery torment." Of course we can look up every single time it's use and it's clearly a place of torment. It's clearly a place of fire every single time it's used. You'll say, "Your King James is wrong because it doesn't differentiate between Hades and ..." Look man, if it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, if its fire, if you're burning, if you are in torment, if you're suffering, if it's darkness, hell is a great English word to describe that. Speak English.
We can sit there and go through all the times that Hades is used and all the times that [inaudible 00:36:44] is used but you know what, it's vain. It's not important because you can read the English Bible and get a clear picture of hell. Did anybody ... who here can say, "I don't know any Greek or Hebrew but reading the New Testament I figured out that there were two different places from my King James Bible. One of them is center of the earth and one in outer darkness. Put up your hand if you figured that out. The whole auditorium because it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure that out. You can tell it from the context. It's pretty easy. I knew that as a small child just reading the Bible.
Has everybody got a clear picture of hell from the New Testament? We've seen what Jesus taught. We've seen what the Apostles taught. It's really consistent. Lets go back to the Old Testament. Deuteronomy 32 is where we started but lets jump forward to Psalms. Lets go to Psalms 9. I'm just going to hurry up and blow through these because remember the unbelievers out there, the liberals out there, the scholars and intelligence out there will try and tell you that hell is not an Old Testament doctrine. Doesn't exist in the Old Testament or they'll say this, "Well, we just replaced ..." a lot of them what they'll do is they just don't translate the word Sheol so they take the Hebrew word Sheol and they just leave it untranslated and then they're like, "We're just going to let the reader decide."
That sounds good on the surface. On the surface it sounds good. "Hey. We don't want to put our doctrinal slang so we're just going to leave it untranslated and let the reader decide," but here is the problem with that. The reader doesn't speak Hebrew. You're asking somebody to decide something that they're not qualified to decide. A person who speaks English needs to read an English Bible and you can't just mix in a bunch of foreign words and say, "We're going to let you decide what they mean." "Guess what, I don't know what they mean," is what the average English-speaking reader is going to say, "that's why I'm reading a translation."
If we just want to let you decide why don't we just hand you a Hebrew Bible then you can decide about all the words. Why stop at Sheol and some of them believe ... For example I looked it up in the ESV and it said like where it talks about hell and destruction and they basically left it as Sheol and Abbadon. They're leaving multiple words untranslated. Why don't ... Is this like a teach you Hebrew version or something? It just doesn't make any sense folks. Why stop there? How many other words are you going to leave up to armchair scholars who don't anything about the original language, have never read Hebrew, "I'm going to figure out what Sheol really means." Here is what really complicates it because Hebrew and English are real different languages.
For example did you know that there is one Hebrew word that is translated into 84 different words in the King James Bible? One Hebrew word translates into 84 different English words but the average reader should just be left to decide which of those 84 words is appropriate. It doesn't make any sense folks. We need to be English-speaking people who read an English Bible. If you're fluent in Hebrew, great. Praise the Lord. You go read your Hebrew Bible but if you're an English-speaker you need the Bible translated into English.
Thank God we have it in the King James. Thank God they had 6 other great versions before that that translate the Bible into English and that all said hell. They all taught this doctrine that I'm preaching this morning that hell is a place of fire and brimstone in both Old and New Testament but these new Bibles come along and they want to remove hell from the Old Testament.
Some of them will just leave it untranslated as Sheol because the word Sheol also has other meanings just like in English we have a ton of words that have multiple meanings and then some of them will just flat out change hell to the grave or death or things of that nature. Let's look at what the Bible says here about hell. You talk to a Jehovah Witness, talk to a Seventh Day Adventist, they're going to tell you, "Sheol is not hell. Sheol is just the grave," and that's what they're going to tell you. That's what the Seventh Day Adventist and Jehovah Witnesses will tell you. Lets see if that adds up because we already saw fire, burning, lowest hell in Deuteronomy 32.
Look at Psalms 9:17. It says, "The wicked shall be turned into hell and all the nations that forget God." If it's just the grave, why is it just the wicked that are going there and why is it just people who forget God that go there. Isn't everybody going to the grave? Didn't every single person practically in the Old Testament besides a few exceptions; Elijah going up in a whirlwind ... didn't they all go to the grave? But did they all go to hell? No.
Chapter 16 verse 10 says, "For thou will not leave my soul in hell neither will thou suffer thou holy one to see corruption." The reason that this verse is so significant is because this is an Old Testament of hell that's according to the New Testament and it says hell in both places and the Greek word is identical in meaning to our English word. Its just fire and brimstone every time it's mentioned. There you go. That proves right there that we're not talking about just the grave. We're talking about hell. "Thou will not leave my soul in hell. Neither will thou suffer thy holy one to see corruption."
Chapter 18 verse 5, "The sorrows of hell compass me about." Now based on that verse is hell a good place? Okay. It's a bad place. It's a sorrowful place. It's somewhere you don't want to be. He said, "Thou will not leave my soul in hell." That's why I'm rejoicing. I want to get out of there. Talking about Jesus Christ of course. The wicked shall be turned into hell.
Look at chapter 55 verse 15 and while you're turning there, I'll read for you from Psalms 86. It says, "For great is thy mercy toward me thou has delivered my soul from the lowest hell." Hell is a place that you're saved from. Everybody getting this? Saved from hell. Hell is a bad place. Hell is sorrowful. Look at 55:15, "Let death seize upon them and let them go down quick into hell for wickedness is in their dwellings and among them." Hell is down. Hell is a place that you go as a wicked person.
Psalms 116. While you're turning there I'll read for you from Psalms 139 verse 8 where it says, "If I ascend up into heaven and thou aren't there, if I make my bed in hell," hold on right there. Again contrasting heaven and hell. Psalms 116 verse 3, "The sorrows of death compass me and the pains of hell get hold upon me. I found trouble and sorrow." Hell is a painful place to be
Proverbs 15:24. You don't have to turn there. Turn to Isaiah 5. Turn your Bibles to Isaiah 5. Proverbs 15:24, "The way of life is above to the wise that they may depart from hell beneath." Is hell a place that you have to go? But if it was just the grave, we'd all be going there. No. Hell is a place that you don't go if you're saved, if you believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. It's a place you can be delivered from. The Bible says in Zechariah ... it's not in my notes ... but somewhere in Zachariah it talks about through the blood of the covenant we are or saved from the pit where it is no water. Again another term for hell. The pit where there is no water, the bottomless pit, the pit and so forth.
Proverbs 23:13, "Withhold not correction from the child: for if thou beatest him with the rod, he shall not die. Thou shalt beat him with the rod, and shalt deliver his soul from hell.." Isaiah 5 verse 14, "Therefore hell hath enlarged herself, and opened her mouth without measure: and their glory, and their multitude, and their pomp, and he that rejoiceth, shall descend into it."
Look at chapter 14 verse 9, "Hell from beneath is moved for thee to meet thee at thy coming: it stirreth up the dead for thee, even all the chief ones of the earth; it hath raised up from their thrones all the kings of the nations." Let me stop here and say this, the people in hell are always classified as dead. Always. "Hell delivered up the dead which were in it." They are always called dead. I saw the dead small and great stand before God and the books were open.
Now those who don't believe in hell, this is what they'll say. Seven Day Adventists, Jehovah Witnesses. You've heard a million times. They'll say this. "You believe that unsaved people have eternal life because you believe that people live forever in hell." They try to play word games with you because we believe that hell is a conscious punishment. Are the people in hell conscious? They're conscious. They are in pain, they have sorrow, they are in torment, they weep, they wail, they gnash their teeth. They are conscious but are they alive? No. "That doesn't make any sense." No, you don't make sense because the Bible is our final authority. The Bible teaches that they are dead.
The people in heaven right now, are they alive or dead? Alive. Even Abraham, Isaac and Jacob were alive while Jesus walked on this earth because when Jesus walked on this earth, he said, "I'm the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob." God is not the God of the dead but of the living. Says, "Abraham rejoiced to see my day and was glad," so Abraham was not only conscious but is alive in heaven. Isaac is alive. Jacob is alive. What about the unsaved? They are dead but are they conscious? "That doesn't make any sense." I don't care whether you think it makes sense. It is possible to be dead in hell in a place called death and yet be conscious of pain and misery and suffering.
The dead in hell will never live again. There will be a resurrection of life and a resurrection of damnation where the dead will be raised up and stand before God. The dead are not brought back to life. They're still dead as they stand before God and the books are open and they are cast into the lake of fire. Just because they are dead does not mean that they are not consciously punished for all eternity.
Don't let people play games with you like that. This is what they teach. They call it ... the architects of the Jehovah false Witness religion call it, "The immortality of the soul," meaning that the soul lives forever. No. The soul dies forever but it is still an eternal conscious punishment that goes on forever. This is a Bible doctrine. It's clear.
Where are we? Isaiah 14, look at verse 12. "How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north. will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High. Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit." Here we see that hell and the pit are synonymous.
Go to Ezekiel 31. Just blowing through these Old Testaments. What have we learned so far? Deuteronomy 32:22; Hell is associated with fire. In Psalms; Hell is brought up over and over again as being the place where the unsaved go, the wicked go. A place where the saved are delivered from. A place where the saved did not have to go. We say in Isaiah that hell is a place that has a physical size, it enlarges itself as more people go there. We read in Isaiah 14:9 that hell is beneath. In verse 15 that's reiterated down into hell and that hell is equated with the pit. Its a place of sorrow. These are all Old Testament doctrines. Sorrow, pain, suffering. Old Testament.
Look at Ezekiel 31 verse 16, "I made the nations to shake at the sound of his fall, when I cast him down to hell with them that descend into the pit." Isn't descend similar to the word down because he is showing us down to hell is the same as descending to the pit. Hell and the pit are used synonymously once again. Just at first blush, looking at Ezekiel 31:16 does hell look like a place where ... does Sheol look like a place where everybody is going? Because it says, "with them that descend into the pit." Doesn't that sound like everybody is not descending into the pit? There is this group that's descending into the pit. That's because it's hell not the grave. If it was the grave, everybody would be going there. If it was just a place of death, everybody dies.
Of course I realize that at the rapture we shall not all sleep but we shall all be changed but throughout history 99% of people have died ... 99.99%. That is not an exact figure. Keep reading. It says, "and all the trees of Eden, the choice and best of Lebanon, all that drink water, shall be comforted in the nether parts of the earth. They also went down into hell with him unto them that be slain with the sword; and they that were his arm, that dwelt under his shadow in the midst of the heathen. To whom art thou thus like in glory and in greatness among the trees of Eden? yet shalt thou be brought down with the trees of Eden unto the nether parts of the earth:" Nether means lower, "thou shalt lie in the midst of the uncircumcised with them that be slain by the sword. This is Pharaoh and all his multitude, saith the Lord God."
Now don't get confused by the trees of Eden. You have to read the whole chapter. Some time read chapters 31 and 32 of Ezekiel. He basically is comparing all the kings to trees and he calls the kings trees and he is referring to people when he says the trees he's talking about the kings and he explains that if you read the whole chapter. When he talks about them being comforted, they are taking comfort when they see the other kings showing up also. When they see their buddies showing up and they say, "You too huh." You got to read the whole chapter. I don't have time to go through it.
Look at chapter 32. It says in verse 24, "There is Elam and all her multitude round about her grave, all of them slain, fallen by the sword, which are gone down uncircumcised into the nether parts of the earth, which caused their terror in the land of the living; yet have they borne their shame with them that go down to the pit. They have set her a bed in the midst of the slain with all her multitude: her graves are round about him: all of them uncircumcised, slain by the sword: though their terror was caused in the land of the living, yet have they borne their shame with them that go down to the pit: he is put in the midst of them that be slain."
Notice, "Them that go down to the pit," not everybody. Only those who go down to the pit. The ungodly. The unsaved. Verse 27, "And they shall not lie with the mighty that are fallen of the uncircumcised, which are gone down to hell with their weapons of war: and they have laid their swords under their heads, but their iniquities shall be upon their bones, though they were the terror of the mighty in the land of the living."
Go to Isaiah 38. The last place we'll turn in the Old Testament right now but this concept of the bottomless pit is something that we find again in the New Testament. Remember in Revelation chapter 9 when the fifth trumpet of God's wrath sounds and the Bible says that there is an angel that comes down from heaven and opens up the bottomless pit and when the bottomless pit is opened there is a smoke that comes out of the pit like the smoke of a great furnace. Then of course those locusts come out of the pit. The later on in chapter 20, the same angel comes down from heaven, having the keys of the bottomless pit and he lays hold on the dragon that old serpent which is Satan and he binds him for a thousand years and casts him into the bottomless pit and shuts him up in the bottomless pit.
We can look up every mention of hell, we could look up every mention of the pit ... the bottomless pit and look, this doctrine is just over and over ... so many scriptures. To deny hell you're just denying hundreds of scriptures. 54 mentions of hell, all the mentions of the furnace of fire, all the mentions of outer darkness, all the mentions of the bottomless pit. Why is hell called the bottomless pit? Think about it, if it's in the center of the earth, why are going to fall to? If it is a pit in the center of the earth there is not to be a gravitational pull. It's a bottomless pit. It has no bottom because it's at the center of the earth.
The Bible also refers to it as being in the heart of the earth. Jesus said, "As Jonah was three days and three nights in the whale's belly so shall the son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth." By the way, you know how to day heart in French? We're not going back to the Greek. We're going back to the French today. The heart is core. Did you know that? That's where we get our English word core. Our English word core ... C-O-R-E ... comes from the French word heart because the French invaded England in 1066 AD, William the Conqueror. That's why core is spelled the way it is.
Any way what I'm trying to say is that the heart or the core of the earth even today the atheistic blasphemers down at the university will tell you that what's in the middle of the earth. The core. They'll tell you, "You got the crust which is less that 10 miles thick." Think about this. What's the diameter of the earth? 10,000 miles. If we were going to draw a diagram of the earth, the core would just be a very thin line around the edge. Picture it like an apple. The skin of the apple is thicker than how thick the core is. If you were to say the apple is a model for the earth, wrong because the skin is too thick. The crust of the earth is even thinner than that apple skin in proportion to the size of the apple. That's pretty thin, isn't it? The crust is less than 10 miles thick then underneath that, the scientists will tell you there is the mantle and they've decided that there's an inner mantle and an outer mantle and that there is an inner core and an outer core. Of course did you know that man has never even reached the mantle. Did you know that?
Here we are 6247 years into it and we've still never reached the mantle and they this big project that they're spending billions of dollars that "By 2028 or something we're going to get to the mantle," and that at the bottom of the scientific article it said, "This is showing man's increasing mastery over the planet." It's like you've got a sphere that's 10,000 miles in diameter and you're all excited because you're getting through the skin of the apple sort of. Maybe 15 years from now. I hope.
Because underneath our soil and underneath the ground and the earth there is the bedrock and there is a layer of rock that is so thick an impenetrable. They have these giant drill bits. They're trying to reach the mantle folks. Forget journey to the center of the earth. They're just trying to journey through the crust in Sci-Fi. Journey through the crust didn't sound as cool so he wrote journey to the center of the earth but they take these drill bits and they drill bit is miles long and they go to the ocean where the crust is the thinnest and they put this giant drill bit and they have to keep changing drill bits. You know how it is when you're drilling through stuff. Keep changing the bit.
They get a few feet, change it. This takes years and years. "Well someday we're going to reach to the mantle," but those same scientists will tell you exactly what's in the core. They know exactly what's in the core. They've never even been to the mantle but you know what they're going to tell you, "It's fire. It's brimstone. It's sulfur." They're going to tell you it's thousands of degrees Fahrenheit in the core ... in the heart of the earth.
How did the Bible already know that? The Bible already told you that hell is there. The Bible told you thousands of years ago. They only started talking about the core hundreds of years ago. Before that they knew, the mantle and what are they doing? They can bounce their sound wave but you can't really be sure until you go there and they all will go there. By the way these scientists because 99% of them reject the Lord Jesus Christ so they are going to go on a journey to the center of the earth because that's where they're going.
What I'm saying is that the core or hell; a place of fire, a place of torment. People scoff at hell today and it's funny. I'll be out soul winning and somebody scoffs at hell and I'm "When you went to school what did they teach you is in the center of the earth?" "Yeah. It's all just fire and lava and it's thousands of degrees," but that's just a coincidence. How do the authors of the Bible know that before all the scientists because it's written by God, that's why. God's the author. There is so much that's in the Bible that's so accurate that man is just now discovering.
The Bible is always ahead of the curve. Where was that last place I had you turn to? Isaiah 38:17, "Behold, for peace I had great bitterness: but thou hast in love to my soul delivered it from the pit of corruption: for thou hast cast all my sins behind thy back."
According to the Old Testament how do you get delivered from hell? How do you get saved from hell? How are you saved from that pit of corruption? It tells you right there because your sins are cast behind God's back. Your sins are forgiven. Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven and whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin. Of course that scripture in Zachariah that I paraphrased you earlier tells us through the blood. In the Old Testament, tells us you are delivered from the pit through the blood. Through salvation. Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved and the Bible is crystal-clear in the Old Testament and the New Testament that hell is a real place, it has a real location; center of the earth at this time, it has fire, its pain, its sorrow et cetera.
Let me ask you this. Did any of the mentions I read for you from the Old Testament contradict the New Testament teaching on hell? Do you think just jump out at you. That's different. Yeah, because it's not different. Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. There has always been heaven, there has always been hell as long as this earth has been created going back to the very early days of Genesis. There's been heaven, there's been hell. The God of the Old Testament is the God of the New Testament. Every word of God is pure. If you want to trust because you don't speak Hebrew, you don't speak Greek. If you want to trust these new modern, effeminate versions, look at the fruit of them. They're destroying our nation.
Christianity is a joke today. Churches are a joke. This church is considered radical and extreme. We just believe the old book and preach it but I'm telling you, the fruit of these new versions is effeminate man, it queers out of the closet, it's liberalism, it's modernism, it's to doubt the miracles, it's to doubt heaven and hell, it's to doubt all of the things that the Bible teaches. These new versions ... if you want to trust the brand-sparkling new, hot off the presses, bible of the month go for it or you can trust the 400-year standard and every Bible in English that came before it that will tell you hell and if you trust it, if you trust your English Bible ... the King James Bible which I do, which I believe is the word of God without error ... if you read it and trust it, you cannot deny what hell is. You cannot deny who's going there and you cannot deny how long it's going to last.
This book makes it crystal-clear and you know what that means? That means we need to preach the gospel to the lost. We're not afraid of going to hell. We're saved. We don't ... We believe in eternal life, everlasting life. We cannot lose our salvation. We're saved by grace through faith. What about them? That's why we go out and tell them. Not because we're just trying to deliver them from the grave. They can go to the grave for all I care. I'm not going to spend that much time on that but you know what? It's to deliver them from hell. The Bible says, "Others save with fear pulling them out of the fire hating even the garments spotted by the flesh." We need to pull them out of the fire. We need to save people from an eternal hell by preaching them the gospel of our Lord and savior Jesus Christ which is the only way they're going to be delivered from hell. Let's bow our heads in a word of prayer.
Father, we thank you so much for your word. We thank you for the fact that you don't change and we thank you for the fact that the Bible is in our language that we don't have to rely on a priest to translate it to us but we have the book in our hand in English. We can read it, we can study it, it's crystal-clear. Help us not to be deceived by the slight of men and cunning craftiness whereby the serpents and vipers lie and wait to deceive us and try to tell us that hell is not real. Obviously the devil doesn't want us to believe in hell because he doesn't want us warning people. He doesn't want us fired up about soul-winning. Help us to stay fired up about soul-winning and to love people and care about people and want to see them saved from eternal hell. In Jesus name we pray, Amen.