Lesson #8

Eternal Punishment

     Man has tried to explain away eternal punishment with various false theories such as: Universalism, Purgatory, Annihilationism, etc.  But Jesus says in Matthew 25:46, "And these shall go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life."  Everlasting punishment in Hell will last just as long as eternal life in Heaven.  Revelation 14:11 says, "And the smoke of their torment ascends forever and ever; and they have no rest day or night."  The torment goes on day and night, forever and ever, without end.  After one has been tormented in Hell a billion years, his torment and punishment will have just begun.  Hell is permanent.  It would be bearable if you knew that after a billion years it would end.  There is no way out of the place.  There is no appeal to a higher court.  It will never ever end.  Hell is eternal and everlasting.  Hell is ugly and horrible.  Heaven is a Holy city made up of pure gold (Revelation 21:18).  What Heaven is on one hand, Hell is the direct opposite.

     In eternal torment there will be no relief.  In Luke 16:23-24, Christ is telling of a certain rich man, "And being in torments in Hades, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham afar off and Lazarus in his bosom.  Then he cried and 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."  There will be no relief.  People will be begging for even just one drop of water, but they will not get it.

     Jesus is trying to warn us of Hell. He says in Mark 9:43-44, "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 fire that shall never be quenched, where their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched."  It will be horrible to be constantly eaten on by flesh eating maggots.  In Hell people will be "cast into outer darkness where there will be weeping, wailing, and gnashing of teeth" (Matthew 22:13, 13:42). The pain is indescribable and unbearable.  No one has to go to Hell if they will only faithfully obey the Lord.  Hell is not a fictitious place.  Hell is a real place in which the vast majority of people will be thrown into (Matthew 7:13-14).  It will be a nightmare that will never end.  There will be no second chances.  Today we must be very serious about the eternity of our souls.  Letís make going to Heaven our number one priority in this life.

     People very seldom consider what it will be like to be lost in Hell.  Jesus, as recorded in the four gospels, taught more on Hell than He did on Heaven, because He doesnít want us to go there.  Hell is something Satan would like for us to forget about.  Satan would like for us to reason Hell out of existence.  Death is not the supreme tragedy because there is life after death.  Everyone will continue to live either in Heaven or Hell after this life is over.  But to stand before the Lord in judgment and to hear Him say, "Depart from Me, you cursed, into everlasting fire prepared for the Devil and his angels" (Matthew 25:41) will be a supreme tragedy.  The tragedy of tragedies is a person lost in Hell.

     Hell is a terrible place.  There is no way to describe how dreadful it is. It is beyond our comprehension.  There is no way our human minds can ever begin to imagine how horrible Hell will be.  Have you ever burned the tip of your finger?  Remember the excruciating pain.  Try to imagine what it would be like to be burning over every square inch of your body.  Try to imagine you are also burning all on the inside and even your soul is eternally on fire, always burning, but never consumed.  You are screaming and pleading for just one drop of water on the tip of your tongue.  This goes on forever and ever.  In Hell there will be no relief.  Hell is a place where there is no hope.  Hell is a hopeless and a helpless place.

     Everyone in Hell will be constantly screaming and begging for mercy, but there will be none.  Jesus says those who are lost "will be cast out into outer darkness: there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth" (Matthew 8:12).  With all of the weeping, screaming, wailing, and gnashing of teeth, there will be no hope that the continued pain and suffering will ever end.  In Mark 9:47-48 Jesus says the lost will be, "Cast into Hell fire, where their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched".  The fires of Hell will never go out.  Now is the time to be concerned about our soul, not when one gets into Hell.  People in Hell will learn too late that God really means what He said.  Letís make sure we go to Heaven.

     The Bible speaks of two deaths.  Letís first consider the First Death and then we will consider the Second Death.  In death there is a separation.  The First Death is when we die physically.  In our first death the physical body goes into the grave but our spirit goes back to God who gave it.  We read in Ecclesiastes 12:7, that when we die physically, "Then the dust will return to the earth as it was, and the spirit will return to God who gave it."  This first death is the separation of our physical body which is buried and our spirit that goes back to God.

     Now the second death is for those who are going to be lost eternally in Hell.  Those who are lost in Hell will be eternally separated from God.  Being eternally separated from God is the Second Death, since death is a separation.  We read in Revelation 21:8, "But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death."    

     The reason this is the Second Death is because of the separation from God.  We read in 2 Thessalonians 1:7-9, "when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.  These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power."  Notice that it says that those who are lost will be separated "from the presence of the Lord", which is the Second Death.  Letís make sure we faithfully obey God so we will not have to endure the Second Death.

Questions Lesson #8
Eternal Punishment

(Click on the button of the answer of your choice)

1)  (Matthew 25:46) The punishment of Hell

      Will be everlasting, without end.

      Will last only for a moment.

      There will be no punishment in Hell.

2)  (Revelation 14:11) The smoke of the torment of the lost will ascend forever and ever.

3)  (Mark 9:43-44) If there is something in our life that is going to cause us to be lost

      We need to keep doing it.

      We must quit doing it now and repent.

      We need to not do it as much.

4)  (Matthew 22:13) Hell is a place of outer darkness.

5)  (Ecclesiastes 12:7) What happens to our physical body when we die?

      It is preserved in the grave.

      The physical body turns to dirt.

      Nothing happens to it.

6)  In death our spirit will not return to God who gave it.

7)  (Revelation 21:8) Those who are lost will

      Never be resurrected.

      Will get a second chance to go to Heaven.

      Will have their part in the lake of fire and brimstone, which is the second death.

8)  Those who only tell a few little lies will still be saved.

9)  (2 Thessalonians 1:7-9) Vengeance will be taken on those who

      Who do not know God (Do not keep His commandments 1 John 2:4).

      On all people.

      On just some of the lost.

10)  In eternity the lost will still be in the presence of the Lord.

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