HELL IS REAL

After Ricky Gervais delivered a truth bomb to the Hollywood elites at the Golden Globe Awards, the Left told him how offended they were. His response was classic. He said, “Just because you are offended doesn’t mean you are right.”

Many Christians do not believe in Hell simply because the idea offends them. However, once again, that doesn’t mean you are right. No matter how much the subject terrifies you—no matter how intensely you reject the thought of Hell, or struggle with the concept, it is not a valid argument to say, “I don’t believe in Hell because the idea stings.”

It is also not a winning argument to say that a God of love would never create a Hell. All you are doing by saying that is making God in your own image. Jesus is the most loving Person Who ever lived, and He spoke of Hell as being real, as recorded in the New Testament, in 15 places. The word “hell” appears 23 times in the KJV.

Neither is it valid to reject eternal punishment by saying it is a myth made up by parents to scare their children into becoming Christians. If a truth is abused by men, that does not make it untrue.

The worst traitor is the preacher who denies the fact of Hell simply to gain wider acceptance. Paul felt that the reality of Hell should intensify our message to the world. He wrote, “Knowing, therefore, the terror of the Lord, we persuade men…” (2 Corinthians 5:11).

We know that the Holy Spirit is aware of Hell, because Jesus said in John 16:8: “And when He (the Spirit of Truth) has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment…”

The Holy Spirit has prompted me to write to you about Hell because of Rob Bell, a former mega-church pastor who has gained traction because of Oprah Winfrey and CNN. He claims to be a Christian who doesn’t believe in Hell. And, of course, his church is in California.

In my opinion, Rob Bell is not teaching this out of a pure conscience, but to be accepted by the Oprah crowd and those who welcome a watered down Gospel. Furthermore, Rob Bell is not content to disbelieve in Hell, he also wants you and every other born again believer to stop believing in Hell.

He uses a crafty term to get us to reinterpret the Bible. He wrote in his bestselling book, deceptively titled “Love Wins,” that we should not take the Bible literally but “literately.” In other words, he is of a higher intelligence than you and me and can therefore educate us on the proper way to interpret the Bible.

This tendency by the Left and certain evangelical ministers to claim a higher I.Q. than you and me is becoming both common and tedious. You’ll remember Mark Galli, the radical editor of Christianity Today Magazine, spoke about Christians who support Trump. He said Trump supporters didn’t finish college and don’t have jobs. This gave him instant acceptance by CNN and all the other Leftist news outlets.

Look at the verses where Jesus talks clearly and undeniably about Hell:

  • Mat 5:22: “whoever says, ‘You fool!’ Shall be liable to the hell of fire”
  • Mat 8:11-12: He said that the Jews (sons of the kingdom) “will be thrown into outer darkness; there men will weep and gnash their teeth”
  • Mat 13:40: regarding the wheat and the tares: “the angels will gather out of His kingdom all causes of sin and all evildoers, and throw them into the furnace of fire; there men will weep and gnash their teeth”
  • Mat 18:8-9 speaks of being thrown into the eternal fire
  • Mark 9:44 and 48 calls Hell “unquenchable fire”
  • Mat 22:13: in the parable of the wedding feast, the man who lacks the proper garment is “cast into the outer darkness, there men will weep and gnash their teeth”
  • Mat 25:30: the man who buried the talent in the ground is also cast there
  • Mat 25:41: “Depart from Me you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels”
  • Luke 16:22-24: in the parable of the rich man and Lazarus, Jesus describes Hell: 22 “So it was that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s bosom. The rich man also died and was buried. 23 And being in torments in Hell, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. 24 Then he cried and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame’”

Now that Hell is out of the bag we have to face it. Every preacher must decide where they stand. You either believe Jesus or you believe Rob Bell. Let me explain. C. S. Lewis heard famous philosophers say that Jesus was a great moral teacher, but that He was not the Son of God. Lewis blew that argument to smithereens by explaining that Jesus said He is the Son of God, and if He isn’t the Son of God He was lying. And if He is a liar, He is not a great moral teacher.  Likewise if there is no hell then Jesus is a liar and not the savior of the world.

But if you were to ask me the most terrifying proof verse of Hell I would say it is John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only Begotten Son that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life.” How can we calculate what it cost God the Father to save us? It was the highest price ever paid for anything. Sometimes the only way to understand the true horror of something is by seeing the extreme measures to which someone is willing to go in order to redeem people from it. 

The question when you stand before God will not be, “How can You do this to me?” It will be, “How could you reject so great a salvation again and again, knowing what it cost the Father to give His only Son to die on the cross to save you?”

Hell is real and, thank God, Heaven is too. The way to be saved from Hell is not mysterious. It begins with believing in your heart and confessing with your mouth, as plainly stated in Romans 10:9, “that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”

The old time preachers are right after all! There is a Heaven to gain and a Hell to shun.  If you have never said a salvation prayer, please, pray:

Lord Jesus, I see You on the cross dying for me. By dying on the cross, You proved Your love for me. By rising from the dead three days later, You proved You have the power to set me free. Thank you for saving me from spending all eternity in Hell. I surrender my will to You. I repent of all my sins. Forgive me and cleanse me. Come and live in my heart. From this day forward, I will make You Lord of my life, and I will follow You for the rest of my life, until the day You call me to Heaven.  Amen

From Sesame Street to Azusa Street

Azusa blog

From Sesame Street to Azusa Street

By Mario Murillo

If the modern celebrity preachers of today were the captain of the Titanic they would have told the passengers, “We didn’t hit an iceberg, we stopped to get ice.”  It takes skill to stand on a sinking ship and convince people it is a pleasure cruise.   Some of these deceitful voices claim to be spirit-filled.

I want to drag you from Sesame Street back to Azusa Street.  Playtime and nap time are over.   I am going to use this blog to rebuke extremes in the Spirit-filled movement.  My special wrath is reserved for the Spirit-filled community.  Pentecostal, Charismatic, Spirit-filled, call it what you will. I am directing this to all who trace their roots to the Azusa Street Revival but run their church and take their orders from spiritual gurus who oppose the Holy Spirit.

If you are spirit-filled and you nurse hidden sympathies that there is same sex marriage, limited inspiration of the scripture and no hell, I have news for you. You are not an enlightened renaissance man. You are the plain, garden-variety hypocrite.  It’s time to be honest.  Renounce your roots or return to them.  Quit the charade.

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I am being blunt because you are helping keep a false narrative alive and at the same time you are hindering true revival by opposing it.  2 Timothy 4:2-4 says, “Preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths.”

Why are you emulating these false voices who preach that, “Everything is peachy because God is so into you, so enjoy the happy times?”

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But what happy times are they talking about?  If you are among those who want Christianity removed from America, then the last 7 years have indeed been amazing.  An impressive string of uninterrupted legal victories for atheists and radical Muslims in the United States has dechristianized marriage, prayer, free speech and all of culture in general.  Korans are in where Bibles are out.  Christian prayer is out in virtually every sporting and civic event.

For the first time, major companies fire leaders simply for being Christian.  Mozilla fired one of their founders, the Golden State Warriors fired a winning coach, and the city of Atlanta fired its fire chief.  Professors routinely threaten and even flunk students for Christian values.  And now the gay lobby is striving to make it illegal to believe that homosexual behavior is sin.

Never in the history of America has church attendance fallen so fast and persecution against believers risen so high.  Never have more pastors been giddier over non-results.  I am sorry to say this but you are in denial if you look at your packed out church and spike the ball while America and the world drown in a sea of Islamic terrorism, atheism, drug addiction, hunger and debauchery.

Yes, some churches are packed out; but like the Titanic, the crowded rooms are a misleading picture.  The boat tilted and people slid into certain ballrooms.  What you don’t see is the floating debris and the masses that fell into the icy sea.  The facts do not lie; mega churches have not had any meaningful effect on America’s steep decline.

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We have so many wrong ideas about millennials and we have so much ignorance about Azusa Street!

We hear preachers say “millennials” are too skeptical and cannot handle Bible doctrine.  That is so wrong.   Did you know that Darwin and Karl Marx were more popular at the time of the Azusa Street Revival than he is today?  In fact, fundamentalism was organized at that time to stem the tide of atheism, Marxism, and a worldwide rejection of the Bible.

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God’s remedy for the dark, disbelieving early 20th Century was to pour out His Spirit.   And that is the answer for today!

Millennials want to deal with racism and social injustice and Pentecostalism is too conservative.  False again!  Azusa Street started the conversation on race long before Eric Holder’s pathetic attempts.   Masses of white believers came to the mission and repented over their racial prejudice.

Another false notion: True Pentecostalism is too legalistic for today.  The accusation of legalism at Azusa Street is a canard!  The good people of the mission may not have danced or worn make up but it had way more to do with a glorious distraction than guilt.  They simply lost interest in vanity and distractions.  By no means did the Holy Ghost make them judgmental.  That came from the next generation who kept the forms but did not experience the fire.

Organic Pentecostalism had great impact on the culture by sweeping millions into a Christian faith that had power, proclaimed victory over habits and trusted the goodness of God to meet every need. To say that this would not work today is to show ignorance of both millennials and history.

Here is the most painful question: Have you looked in the mirror and asked yourself how much suffering you are allowing in recovering drug addicts and those fighting sexual sin by not telling them about the Baptism in the Holy Spirit?

If you repent and follow the leading of the Holy Spirit right now you will indeed lose people, but you will gain an army.  You will lead a congregation rooted in power.  You will not live in the tyranny of the latest church growth gimmick.

What America needs right now is lions in the pulpit, men and women of conviction, full of the Holy Ghost who will, no matter what, obey and declare the full counsel of God.

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