#315 – THE DANGER OF HELL (26/3/21)
Sin promises heaven but only delivers hell. Sin is to rebel against God and make our own path. Jesus, in love, warns us against taking the path of impurity.
‘If your right eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into hell.’ (Matthew 5:29-30)
This Sermon on the Mount ends with the warning that
“But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”
When we disobey Jesus, our lives become hellish. The word for ‘house’ in this parable could also be translated as ‘household’. If you are giving yourself to ungodly looking, your household will be damaged and is in danger of collapse. If you are not in a family setting, it’s still true to say that your life will be engulfed in storms if you are disobeying Jesus.
However, Jesus is also warning, as he did in 5:22, of going to hell. Hell can be defined,
‘Hell is a place of eternal conscious punishment for the wicked.’ (Wayne Grudem)
We read later on in the Gospel of Matthew,
“Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.” (Matthew 25:41).
Question - If I’m saved by grace, by faith, how can lustful looking send me to hell? Secondly, if lust sends one to hell, surely this means that everyone will go to hell?!
Firstly, in answer to these questions, I want to affirm that one is saved entirely through faith in Jesus’ death for our sin. Through faith, we are justified - declared perfectly righteous.
However, I challenge the reality of your faith if you can trust His death for your sin but not trust what He says about sex and lust!
Jesus’ words convict all of us. A true Christian will repent. A true Christian will ‘mourn’ and will ‘hunger and thirst for righteousness’. A true Christian will keep asking for forgiveness and keep paying the price for purity. They may fall, but they always fall forward!
How are you going to pay the price for purity? As important, are you investing in godly relationships? Are you investing in your marriage? If you are single, are you building deep and supportive friendships? I encourage you to start a ‘Running partnership’ - a group of 2 or 3 brothers or sisters with whom you can be honest and receive support for areas such as this. To start a running partnership, go to,
COMMUNITY GROUP STUDY - PURITY IS COSTLY
It might be good to begin with notices. Please share from this week’s Church News.
What is the most beautiful thing you've ever seen and why do you think this?
On Sunday we continued our 'Sent' discipleship series by looking at Jesus' teaching regarding adultery and sexual purity.
You have to agree that our culture is very confused and confusing regarding sexual ethics. The things we are encouraged to watch are saturated with sexually explicit imagery; whilst this is so, we are also told to respect and not objectify one another!
It's important that we understand Jesus' teaching on sexual purity and that we help to teach others where we can, particularly if we are parents.
“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into hell.” (Matthew 5:27-30)
i) Impurity is costly
Firstly, Jesus is teaching that the command not to commit adultery - to be faithful to our spouse - is still in place. We are to do the costly work of doing all that we can to build healthy marriages.
Secondly, Impurit is costly in a number of ways:
i) Your marriage will be weakened
ii) You will lose the respect of your spouse
iii) It damages our relationship with God. He is angry with our sin - it grieves the Holy Spirit and we will receive His discipline.
iv) If you are single, it will damage your ability to make a commitment to someone and it pollutes your friendships.
v) Impurity costs a broken society - Impurity leads to ever increasing harassment and sexually deviant behaviour.
vi) It will send us to hell if we are unrepentant - impurity can reveal that we are not really a Christian.
ii) Purity is costly
Jesus' words about losing a hand or eye reveal that purity will be costly to us.
To have sexually pure relationships is not easy. You will be fighting against the tide of culture, the flesh and the devil. However, Purity is precious and so is worth the hard work.
i) You’ll be mocked - It’s costly to keep because your friends may mock you for still being a virgin and for believing in no sex before marriage.
ii) Breaking an addiction is hard - Purity is costly because impurity is addictive.
iii) You lose what you like - Purity is costly, it’s like cutting off what is valuable.
iv) Purity is costly in that it takes time and effort to invest in your marriage or friendships.
iv) However, purity is costly because it is precious. It comes with eternal worth and gain. Every area of your life will be blessed through purity. And it comes with the great promise,
“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.” (Matthew 5:8)