The Fire of Hell

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Blueridge Believer

Puritan Board Professor
Every now and then we need to be reminded of this. This is from Thomas Brooks' "London's Lamentations", 1670.

Here is imprecation—"You who are cursed!" "But Lord, if we must depart, let us depart blessed!" "No! Depart--you who are cursed!" You have cursed others, and now you shall be cursed yourselves; you shall be cursed in your bodies, and cursed in your souls; you shall be cursed by God, and cursed by Christ, and cursed by angels, and cursed by saints, and cursed by devils, and cursed by your wicked companions. Yes, you shall now curse your very selves, your very souls, that ever you have despised the gospel, refused the offers of grace, scorned Christ, and neglected the means of your salvation! O sinners, sinners, all your curses, all your maledictions shall at last recoil upon your own souls! Now you curse every man and thing which stands in the way of your lusts, and which cross your designs; but at last all the curses of heaven and hell shall meet in their full power and force upon you! Surely that man is eternally cursed, who is cursed by Christ himself! [Cursings now are wicked men's hymns; but in hell they shall be their woes! Rev. 16:9, 11, 21.]

"But, Lord, if we must depart, and depart cursed, oh let us go into some good place!" No! Depart into the eternal fire!" ["Of this fire you had need of some devil or accursed wretch to describe," says one.] There is the vengeance and continuance of it. You shall go into fire, into eternal fire, which shall neither consume itself, nor consume you. The eternity of hell, is the hell of hell. The fire in hell is like that stone in Arcadia, which being once kindled, could never be quenched. If all the fires that ever were in the world were contracted into one fire, how terrible would it be! Yet such a fire would be but as a 'painted fire' upon the wall, compared to the fire of hell. It is a very sad spectacle to behold a malefactor's body consumed little by little in a lingering fire. But ah, how sad, how dreadful, would it be to experience what it is to lie in unquenchable fire, not for a day, a month, or a year, or a hundred or a thousand years—but forever and ever! "If it were," says Cyril, "but for a thousand years, I could bear it; but seeing it is for eternity, this frightens and horrifies me!" "I am afraid of hell," says Isidore, "because the worm there never dies, and the fire never goes out!" For to be tormented without end, this is that which goes beyond all the bounds of desperation. Grievous is the torment of the damned for the bitterness of the punishments; but more grievous for the diversity of the punishments; but most grievous for the eternity of the punishments!

To lie in everlasting torments, to roar forever in anguish of heart, to rage forever for madness of soul, to weep, and grieve, and gnash the teeth forever—is a misery beyond all expression! Mat. 25:46. Bellarmine tells of a learned man who, after his death, appeared to his friend complaining that he was adjudged to hell-torments, "which," says he, "were they to last but a thousand thousand years, I would think it tolerable; but, alas—they are eternal!"

And it is called "eternal fire," Jude 7. I have read of a prison among the Persians which was deep, and wide, and dark, and out of which the prisoners could never get, and therefore it was called by them Lethe, Forgetfulness: this prison was a paradise, compared to hell. Mark, everything that is conducible to the torments of the damned is eternal.

(1.) God who damns them is eternal, Isaiah 33:14; Romans 16:26.

(2.) The fire which torments them is eternal, Isaiah 30:33, and 66:24; Jude 7. [1 Pet. 3:19. Lucian says that it was the common opinion among them that the wicked were held in chains by Pluto, (so they call the prince of devils,) in chains, which cannot be loosed.]

(3.) The prison and chains which hold them are eternal, Jude 6-7, 13; 2 Pet. 2:17.

(4.) The worm which gnaws them is eternal, Mark 9:44. Melanchthon calls it a hellish fury.

(5.) The sentence which shall be passed upon them shall be eternal, Mat. 25:41-42.

The fire of hell is called a burning lake: Rev. 20:15, "Whoever was not found written in the book of life, was cast into the lake of fire." You all know that fire is the most tormenting element. Oh the most dreadful impressions which fire makes upon the flesh!
 

Tirian

Puritan Board Sophomore
A helpful if sobering reminder of the great love the Father has lavished upon us in terms of what we have been saved from, by having His justice satisfied in the blood of the Lamb for those who belong to Him.

I commend this series of sermons to anyone who would know more of the biblical doctrine of hell. They are by Pastor Edward Donnelly as preached in 1997 at a Reformed Baptist conference in the US. SermonAudio.com - Grace Reformed Baptist Church

You can also follow the link to his series, preached on the biblical doctrine of Heaven two years later.

You should swim across sea and ocean if needs be to hear these sermons.

Regards,
Matt
 
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