Christ Preparing our Hearts 3

Be persuaded that your soul is far more valuable to you than the whole world and there are only two places (heaven and hell) that you will spend all eternity in.

While it seems that the vast majority of modern professing Churches want to hide this enormous reality from people in order to get them in the doors and make extractions from their wallets, this is a truly vital point that cannot be forgotten or ignored. It must not be diminished and it must not be ignored. Jesus was quite clear when He said that we are not to fear those who can only kill the body but cannot kill the soul, but instead we are to fear Him who can utterly destroy both soul and body in hell. It might be good for preachers to spend a fair amount of time stressing that verse to their people, but then again it would be a good idea for something to stress that great truth to preachers themselves.

Jesus spoke of a rich man (while on earth) who died and then lifted up his eyes in hell. It seemed that he was immediately aware of being in a fire and of having a great thirst in which he longed for one drop of water. Jonathan Edwards spoke of those who would pour alcohol down their throats in this life and yet would have fire and brimstone for their drink in hell. Do we even begin to think like that today? It may be that our doctrine of God cannot handle such a theology, but it is the true God who has revealed this. It may be that in order to teach the doctrine of heaven and hell to people that we must start with the nature of God.

Deuteronomy 4:24 “For the LORD your God is a consuming fire, a jealous God.

Hebrews 12:27 but a terrifying expectation of judgment and THE FURY OF A FIRE WHICH WILL CONSUME THE ADVERSARIES. 28 Therefore, since we receive a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us show gratitude, by which we may offer to God an acceptable service with reverence and awe; 29 for our God is a consuming fire.

We can see from the texts above that the Bible speaks of God Himself being a consuming fire. It is not just that He gives fuel to a fire, but He is the fire that we should fear. It is not that God will deliver us from a fire that is somewhere else, but that He is the fire that consumes and torments the damned. We must drive this point home to people if they are to see how valuable their soul is to them. This point must be driven home to them so that they can see how utterly terrible hell really is, yet how great the Gospel of Jesus Christ is who suffered that torment in His soul for sinners.

‘Tis the infinite almighty God himself that shall become the fire of the furnace exerting his infinite perfections that way. Jonathan Edwards.

God is the fire which burns in hell that words can never convey—much less exaggerate—the terrors of the damned. John Gerstner

The two quotes from just above should serve as reminders from the Scriptures to drive this great truth into our hearts. Sinners need to be awakened to the terrors that are ahead of them if Christ does not save them. This great and awful truth is one means by which Christ prepares hearts to seek Him rather than the world. This is a truth that Christ opens souls to and opens their minds to and shows them the terror of the Lord that they may seek Him. A heart that is not prepared in this way is simply unprepared. How can a person be saved if s/he does not know what s/he will be saved from? What do preachers do when they ignore this great truth and preach only with soothing words upon doctrines of love? They are not used of Christ to prepare souls for Himself, they are used to prepare souls for damnation.

“Beloved, doctrines of terror God hath more sanctified for the conversion of souls, than any other doctrine in the world…Those that have cried do much to have preaching upon strains of love, and free grace, I am sure, as some manage the matter, they have hardened more souls, than every they hath been converted by these new teachers, that pretend more light than their brethren…Sermons of terror have gone more good upon unconverted souls, than sermons of comfort have ever done; sermons of hell may keep many out of hell.” Christopher Love

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