The Story of Hell

October 13, 2019                                                                                                                                      Luke 16:19-31

There’s a strange little insect called the velvet ant – attractive, as ants go – garbed in a thick coat of tiny hairs that feel smooth and velvety.  But it’s all a disguise. This tiny creature isn’t an ant at all, but a wingless wasp with a nasty sting. After injecting its victim with venom, it lays its eggs in their incapacitated bodies.   How like Satan!  He’s a venomous imposter who wants to implant his warped ideas into the dulled hearts of his victims.  One of his cleverest strategies is to make evil seem desirable. Just consider today’s movies. Sexual sin of every type is glamorized and glorified.  Profanity “appears” as righteous indignation.  Fame captivates. Fortune beguiles. Violence titillates.    It’s not popular today to talk about Satan, the devil… the “evil one.”   A personal being who personifies evil just seems, well, so medieval, and not so 21st century.  But this being is the adversary in God’s great story and is found in Scripture from Genesis to Revelation.  Jesus in the parable of the sower (Matt 13:1-23), blames the devil for thwarting the message of the gospel.      This morning’s Scripture tells of a rich man who went to hell, not because of his wealth, but because he was selfish, refusing to feed Lazarus, take him in, or care for him.  The rich man was hardhearted in spite of his great blessings. Sounds like the “velvet ant” got him.   There are no second chances in hell.  Abraham replied to the rich man, “between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, so that those who want to go from here to you cannot, nor can anyone cross over from there [hell] to us” (Luke 16:26).  Satan doesn’t mind if we become religious, just so long as it remains politically incorrect to proclaim Jesus Christ as the ONLY name under heaven whereby we must be saved.  Will you dare to be politically incorrect and tell one person about Jesus today?!

Your brother and friend,
Pastor Bruce