March 17 – Hard Questions 2.0 – “Why should I think that Heaven really exists and that God sends people to Hell?”

Read Ecclesiastes 3:11, John 14:2-3 and Matthew 13:41-43

As I write this, I reflect that yesterday was the ninth anniversary of my dad’s passing from this world into his glorious new life with his Savior, Jesus. I opened my Bible to read today’s reading and, in the margin of John 14, I had written the name “Dad” as this was one of his favorite passages.

The Bible speaks countless times on the subject of both Heaven and Hell. There is no disputing that life on earth is temporary. Paul speaks of this in 2 Corinthians 5 and the writer of Hebrews (9:27) says that it is appointed unto men once to die.

But what lies beyond the grave?

How can we know for certain that Heaven and Hell exist? How do we know where we will spend eternity?

On the eve of His death, Jesus explained to His disciples that He would not be with them much longer. Peter, in his eagerness, questioned where Jesus was going and why he couldn’t come with Him. In this context, Jesus comforts His disciples with the promise of Heaven, assuring them that where He was going, they would be also. Thomas, the evidence seeker of the group, wanted to make sure he knew the way. Jesus said to him:

“I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but through Me.”

There is no other way to Heaven than through His son, Jesus. Jesus is not a way. He is the way. Paul says that although our earthly house is torn down, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens… to be absent from the body is to be at home with the Lord (2 Corinthians 5:1,8). 

However, because of sin, we all deserve the wrath of God. For all have sinned (disobeyed God) and have fallen short of God’s glory. And the wages (consequences) of sin is death. But the free gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ (Romans 3:23 and 6:23).

Perhaps the question we should ask is why wouldn’t God send people to Hell? What incredible grace (getting what we don’t deserve) and mercy (not getting what we do deserve) has been given to us through Jesus!

“God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”Romans 5:8

His death satisfied God’s wrath and His resurrection from the dead conquered death and gives us new life – not only here on earth, but life eternal with Him after the grave.

For the past nine years my dad has been living in a very real place- Heaven. The day of his memorial service we sang one of his favorite hymns and, for the rest of my days here on earth, I, too, am living in “Blessed Assurance”.

How does what you read influence your view of God? Grace? In what way can you be joyous about our future in Heaven, as believers, and still be evangelistic towards the lost?

Charlene Engle

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s