We thought it would never go out…
You can listen to today’s devotion by clicking on this SoundCloud link.
“…hell, where their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.”
My friend, Tim, described the awful scene when he arrived at his burning barn at one o’clock in the morning: “It was a picture of what hell must be like. I was burned on my ankles and hands trying to get equipment out, and we thought it (the fire) would never go out!”
When our Lord Jesus wants to describe the pain and horror of hell, he uses the picture of the fire that never goes out. When a person receives burns on his body, the pain is excruciating. Imagine a fire that never quits burning you!
Jesus wants to impress upon us that the eternal punishment of those who would reject Him, and His Word, is terrible and eternal in its consequences. Many decisions in a person’s life have drastic consequences. The decisions to divorce, to strike out in anger, to abort a child, to hate another person…these are decisions with lasting consequences. However, the decision to push away God’s love and forgiveness is the most terrible decision of a person’s life. All sins in this world can be forgiven, except the terrible sin of refusing the work of the Holy Spirit to repent and call on God for mercy.
Are there sins that the Holy Spirit is calling you to repent today? Please do not refuse the Father’s mercy! There is great joy in heaven over every sinner who repents, but there is terrible sadness and grief over every person that refuses to repent.
The Lord Jesus Christ died upon the cross, enduring the sins of the world and the forsakenness of all mankind. He endured that horror that you might never have to. He bore your sins that you might enter heaven in joy, and live there eternally.
Lord Jesus, thank you for rescuing me from sin, hell, and eternal fire. Send your Holy Spirit to bring all to repentance and your forgiveness, that we may enjoy the joy of heaven forever. Amen.
Copyright Holy Cross Lutheran Church, Colorado Springs, CO