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Jesus’ Hyperbole

“If your hand or your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away; it is better for you to enter life maimed or lame than to have two hands or two feet and to be thrown into the eternal fire. And if your eye causes you to stumble, tear it out and throw it away; it is better for you to enter life with one eye than to have two eyes and to be thrown into the hell of fire” (vv. 8-9).

Categories: hell, jesus, matthew

Judgment and Hell

Hmm, 9-Year Bible recommends a 2-week study on judgment and hell.

Think I’ll do a quick search and move on.

The word judgment appears in the NIV 158 times.

The word hell appears only 15 times, all in the New Testament.

I’m now 31 weeks into the 8th year of the 9-Year Bible sequence. After reading Philemon and Matthew, I’ll have studied the entire New Testament in detail. There are some Old Testament chapters, two character studies on Nehemiah and Peter, and three remaining topical studies.

How exciting that in 2015 or 2016, I’ll have finished this journey through the Navigator Bible Studies Handbook long-range Bible study program!

Categories: hell, judgment

Judgment and Hell

After this two-week study, I’m convinced that our understanding of judgment and hell is incomplete.

Evil deserves punishment. But no punishment is sufficient for the evil we sometimes experience.

Categories: hell, judgment

Acts 8:20

Peter answered [Simon the Sorcerer], “May you and your money go to hell, for thinking that you can buy God’s gift with money!”

Matthew 7:13-14

Go in through the narrow gate, because the gate to hell is wide and the road that leads to it is easy, and there are many who travel it. But the gate to life is narrow and the way that leads to it is hard, and there are few people who find it (GNT).

Categories: hell, jesus, life, matthew

Hell, Hesitantly

When I first started a two-week study of hell and judgment right before Christmas, it felt awkward and out-of-place.

After yesterday’s tragic shooting, this topic has become timely.

It is not my place to feel anger for others’ losses. This is my first reaction.

But even as I type these words, I’m not convinced.

Maybe it IS my place to be angry.

Maybe anger is an important step toward action.

What got Jesus really angry?

Crooks in the Temple courts. Hypocritical religious leaders.

Jesus reacted much more strongly to others’ suffering than to his own.

“If anyone causes one of these little ones—those who believe in me—to stumble, it would be better for them to have a large millstone hung around their neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea. Woe to the world because of the things that cause people to stumble! Such things must come, but woe to the person through whom they come!”(Jesus, quoted in Matthew 18:6-7, NIV)

Woe to the Webster shooter. Woe to the Sandy Hook shooter. Woe to the mall shooters.

Woe to the thug, the bully, the abuser.

Woe to the selfish, the self-centered, the self-righteous.

When it comes right down to it, woe to me when I do the wrong thing.

The more deeply I reflect upon what made Jesus angry, the more carefully I consider my own faults.

Thank God for the forgiveness present in the Incarnation of Christ.

Merry Christmas.

Woe to the killers.

Peace and humility to those of us who remain. Teach us to live lives of love, not of woe.

Categories: Christ, Christmas, hell, matthew

Team Hell

My favorite exposition on the subject, by Slacktivist, is found here.

Categories: hell
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