Since I found many of these people’s teachings deeper than what I had found in traditional churches, I began to wonder if they are right about hell. Some of their arguments are quite convincing. So I began to study their literature on hell, truly desiring to seek the truth on the matter. My periodic seeking on this subject lasted several years. To make a long story short, the more I delved into the matter in Bible study and asked the Lord to show me the truth, the more I was convinced their teaching against a tormenting hell is a great deception. I now believe their teachings against a real hell and all people will eventually get saved is from the pit of hell itself. However, I have fellowshipped with some people who believe these things, and I love them as brothers and sisters in Christ. I studied the matter until I felt I could biblically refute every argument they have against a real hell. In the following blogs I will present and refute some of their best arguments against a tormenting hell with the Scriptures.
I found that many of their arguments were based on human philosophy and emotions instead of the Bible. For example, one thing that I encountered a lot in my reading their info was God is too loving of a Father to create people just for most of them to be tormented in hell forever. They would say things like, “What earthly father would bring a child into this world knowing ahead of time that he would end up in hell. That would be a monster, not a loving God.” Arguments like that sound rational and logical, but they are not based on the teachings of the Bible.
For example, those philosophical arguments about God just take into account one side of God – His loving qualities and not His justice qualities. If God sent His son to be tormented on the cross for our sins, then that should cause us to consider how much God hates sin and demands that a heavy price be paid for transgressing against the Creator of the heavens and the earth. If we are going to use human reasoning like they do, why not consider the penalties of breaking the laws of great human kings in the past to see if their subjects were sent to a school to learn the ways of the king or if many ended up being tortured and killed for their crimes? If the earthly king was weak and not very great, then maybe the subject could get away with some rebellion against the king. Human reason would dictate that the greater the earthly king, the greater the crime of breaking his law and the greater the punishment. So what kind of penalty should breaking the laws of the King of kings and Lord of lords carry after He sacrificed His own son to provide a way for us to be saved from His wrath? Should He just wink at our rebellion after that?
Speaking of His wrath, that is another thing these “kingdom” teachers don’t like to recognize. The Bible tells us very clearly that God is not only a God of love but also a God of wrath, punishment, vengeance, anger, and jealousy, who should be greatly feared and honored. The Proverbs teach,
“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding” (Prov. 9:10).
“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction” (Prov. 1:7).
“Do not be wise in your own eyes; Fear the Lord and depart from evil” (Prov. 3:7).
We often hear of the names of God, at least the ones we like such as Jehovah-Jireh, the God who provides. What we don’t often hear is some of His other less popular names such as Jehovah-Nakah, the God who smites.
“And mine eye shall not spare, neither will I have pity: I will recompense thee according to thy ways and thine abominations that are in the midst of thee; and ye shall know that I am the LORD that smiteth” (Ezek. 7:9 KJV).
Jesus Himself said about the Father,
“And I say to you, My friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I say to you, fear Him!” (Luke 12:4-5).
How many sermons and teachings from the pulpits have you heard on Jehovah-Nakah, the God who smiteth? I would guess not even one. We don’t like that side of God. I am convinced that we have heard such an unbalanced characterization of God from the churches that it does not even describe the God of the Bible. Otherwise, so many people, both saved and unsaved, would not ask such uninformed questions about God such as, “If God is such a loving God, why would He throw anyone into hell?” A person who can ask such a question is uninformed of what the Bible teaches about God. The Bible teaches He is a God of judgment, vengeance, and wrath, who punishes those who sin against Him and casts all into eternal fire who do not receive and follow His son who died on the cross for our sins.
The most quoted verse of the Bible is John 3:16,
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”
Oh yeah, that is what we like to hear about God’s love, salvation, and eternal life. The “kingdom” teachers say teaching God as a God of judgment turns people off to the gospel message. However, the Bible teaches that God’s justice and judgment is part of the gospel message. Two verses after the most-often quoted John 3:16 is John 3:18 which states,
“. . . but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.”
Did you catch that? Those who have not accepted Jesus are condemned already. How come we never hear this quoted along with John 3:16? Because it may give someone the impression that God is not only a God of love but also a God of vengeance and wrath. The book of Hebrews says,
“Anyone who has rejected Moses' law dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know Him who said, ‘Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,’ says the Lord. And again, ‘The Lord will judge His people.’ It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Heb. 10:28-31).
Another name for God in the Bible is Jehovah-Gemulah, the Lord of recompense. He will pay to everyone what they deserve for their deeds in this life. Most will not be saved but cast into hell fire and never get out because they refused to accept the costly salvation of love He provided through Jesus. Romans says that the recompense for sin is death (6:23), that is eternal death.
Another name for God is E l-Qanna, the jealous God. How loving is a jealous husband towards a wife who commits adultery? Many wives have been killed over that sin.
“For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments. ‘You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain’” (Deut. 5:9-11).
The God I have heard about most of the time through preachers, whether kingdom teachers or not, is not the God I read about in my Bible. The God I read about in my Bible is to be greatly feared if you sin against Him or if you reject His son as Lord over your life. Notice I didn’t say savior of your life? He must also be Lord of your life. If you just accept Him as savior for fire insurance, as many do, and not make Him Lord of your life by following Him and His Word, you have rejected Him.
“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’” (Matt. 7:21-23).
The so called “kingdom” teachers say that type of preaching will scare people away from God. It is a shame no one ever told John the Baptist that because he began preaching about the kingdom with a God of hell fire, condemnation, and judgment.
“And even now the ax is laid to the root of the trees. Therefore every tree which does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly clean out His threshing floor, and gather His wheat into the barn; but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire” (Matt. 3:10-12).
Jesus also preached that sinners would be cast into a hell of unquenchable fire:
“If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter into life maimed, rather than having two hands, to go to hell, into the fire that shall never be quenched – where ‘Their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.’ And if your foot causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life lame, rather than having two feet, to be cast into hell, into the fire that shall never be quenched – where ‘Their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.’ And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye, rather than having two eyes, to be cast into hell fire – where ‘Their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched’” (Mark 9:43-48).
Preaching God casting sinners into hell fire was part of Jesus’ Gospel. He apparently was not afraid that it might scare people away from God, but rather was hoping to scare them towards God’s mercy through repentance and following Him. The Bible teaches fear of God as a healthy thing, not something to be shunned in preaching. It is part of the gospel message no matter how unpopular it may be. Most worldly people do not want to even hear about hell in this life. Ironically, they will have a long time to think about it in hell. It is much better to think about it now than when it is too late. Hell and God’s wrath are exactly what we are saved from by following Jesus.
I will continue this important subject in my blog next month and provide many more scriptures to prove hell is real and the people who go there are not getting out.