Death: Is there Life afterwards?
In the Bible, Hebrews 9:27 says, “And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:” Yes, we all must give an account of ourselves before God. We WILL be judged! Either you will get to spend eternity in heaven, or you will spend eternity in hell. And never think for a moment that the place called hell and all it’s torment does not exist. It certainly does, and the majority of mankind is going to spend eternity there! It doesn’t have to be that way, but it will. It will be strictly because of man’s stubborn refusal to turn to God for this which he could not provide for himself. This situation is not at all what God wished it to be.
II Peter 3:9
9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing [wishing or desiring] that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. [Emphasis added]
God even made provision so that anyone and everyone could spend eternity in a wonderful place of blessing called heaven.
I John 2:2
2 And he [speaking of Jesus Christ] is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world. [Emphasis added]
I Timothy 2:5-6
5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;
6 Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time. [Emphasis added]
These verses clearly tell us provision was made so that anyone can be saved so as to enjoy God’s blessing for all eternity. But Jesus Christ and what He did must be accepted individually and personally by faith.
Probably the most well-known verse in the world speaks of God’s love and His desire that all might be saved from eternal punishment.
16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. [Emphasis added]
The Apostle Paul also writes about it, showing us how God, because of His great love for us, made provision so that anyone and everyone could be saved from that suffering.
8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. [Emphasis added]
Jesus tells us the story of two men who died about the same time. One went to a place of torment and the other to a place of comfort. The story is not a parable. When telling a parable, names were not given of any of the parties involved. So, no, the story is not a parable, but a historical reality with eternal ramifications.
19 There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day:
20 And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores,
21 And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man’s table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores.
22 And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried;
23 And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
24 And 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.
25 But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented.
26 And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence.
27 Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father’s house:
28 For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment.
29 Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.
30 And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent.
31 And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead. [Emphasis added]
When anyone ends up in hell it is due to their own decision-making. Their decision to reject God and His plan for their life determines where they will spend eternity. God’s love provided for and offered a wonderful option, but in every such case where someone ends up in hell, that option was rejected. Our main goal in life should be to work to persuade people to accept the salvation God offers to all freely. God has done all the work to make man’s salvation possible. Christ died for our sins, was buried, and raised on the third day. When anyone in our time accepts that provision for their salvation, they need not ever worry about spending eternity in hell.
31 What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?
32 He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? [Emphasis added]
Salvation is only a breath away for anyone. Anytime anyone ever accepts Jesus Christ and the work He did to provide for their salvation, that salvation becomes theirs immediately. Jesus Christ came into this world to provide something we were helpless to provide for ourselves. He died for our sins, was buried, and raised from the grave. Such a person who puts their faith in this work need not ever worry about eternal suffering in hell. Instead, they all have a lot to look forward to enjoying forever. There’s no good reason at all that shouldn’t include you.