Hell or Heaven?
Truth and Faith
Faith is an interesting reality. Many people deny faith as it pertains to religion. We all exercise faith. My family and I live about 20 miles north of Pittsburgh and Allegheny General Hospital. We go to the hospital and the doctor’s offices around the hospital often. To get there we must drive south on Pennsylvania Route 8, a four-lane road. We live 2 miles into Butler County. While traveling south on Route 8 in Butler County the road has a suicide lane separating the north-bound and south-bound lanes. Once we cross into Allegheny County there is no suicide land. The road contains some curves getting to Pittsburgh. We must exercise faith that the drivers coming in the opposite direction will stay in their lane. This kind of faith is applied no matter where one drives. Seldom do we consider the extraordinary faith we exercise when driving.
Faith is simply believing or trusting something we cannot see. We cannot see the wind. We do know when the wind is blowing because we can feel it and see the results of the wind, trees swaying, and leaves being carried along. We cannot see God either. We do know He is there because we can see what He does. He created all things, and He changes people. When I am telling people about Jesus, God in flesh, I do not quote the Bible. People that do not know God do not believe the Bible. I simply tell them who I was before I knew Jesus and who I am now!
Once we know God, the Bible comes into sharp focus. It is true from the beginning to the end. It is not a complicated book. It does need some explanation, but it is plain to understand. It is made up of several different kinds of literature. There is a narrative, God reveals Himself and humans in straightforward stories. There is poetry with all its beauty. There is sexuality with all its charm. There is also apocalyptic writing. There is a great deal of figurative language here. It was written to people that needed some encouragement because of persecution. It was written in such a way as to not be easily understood by the persecutors. There is also the difficulty that it is not written in a linear fashion. It does jump around a bit.
The Bible consists of 66 books, 39 in the Old Testament and 27 in the New Testament. These 66 books were written by roughly 40 people over a period of nearly 1400 years. Each writer was inspired by Holy Spirit without their own personal writing style being overwhelmed. God is amazing in His revelation to us. He calls us to obey His revealed truth. We are not to make up rules that seem right to our understanding but to just do what He says. The Bible reveals all people have disobeyed God and the result is death, eternal separation from God. This breaks His heart. He loves every person and He created them all, He wants us to be with Him forever. Yet, we cannot. His heart is broken.
He does not change His word, the penalty for disobedience is death, eternal separation from Him. He does offer a solution. He allows for someone to pay our penalty for us. God in the flesh, Jesus, came to earth and lived among us. Jesus is 100% God and 100% human. He experienced everything a human can experience, but without disobeying His Father. He revealed the Father’s heart of love for all people. He took upon Himself all the sins of all people for all human history. He allowed the Father to vent His anger toward that sin. Jesus suffered severe punishment and a criminal’s death. Father God said that was enough. His anger was satiated. He brought Jesus back from the grave demonstrating that He has power even over death. Everyone who calls on the name of Jesus is forgiven their disobedience (sin) and granted an eternal home with God.
When Jesus was executed on the cross there were two criminals being executed with Him. One of the criminals asked Jesus to remember him when He came into His kingdom. Jesus replied, today you will be with Me in paradise, Heaven.
Before His execution, Jesus told His disciples that no one comes to the Father except through Him, Jesus. There is no other way to Heaven but Jesus. It is a very narrow way, but it is available to all. I often ask people, if you were to die today do you think you will go to heaven? Most reply something like this, I hope so. I ask, why do you hope so? They usually reply I have been a good person, certainly, God will allow me into His home. I reply, the Bible says that there is not one good person. All have disobeyed God, and their reality is to be lost for all eternity. There is an answer, if you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. You will certainly be in Heaven when you die.
No one is promised the next breath. Take this moment to admit to yourself that you are not good. You do not deserve Heaven. Declare with your mouth, Jesus is Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved from eternal punishment, Hell. Do this now! Now thank Him! Tell someone that you have passed from death to life eternal. Seek a church that believes and declares the truths of the Bible. You are now a new person, act like it. Buy a Bible and read it, do what it says, act justly, love God, and love all people.