One of our mandates, as believers, is to share the good new of the salvation we have in Christ with unbelievers. The hope is that when an unbeliever hears this good news, they will accept the truth and ultimately become a follower of Christ. I’m convinced that it is not by our persuasive words that anyone ever accepts Christ. It is the Father who draws souls unto himself. So, we shouldn’t expect to always find acceptance when sharing Christ with others. We may even find resistance. We may hear them mock God, curse us or even make light of hell. Have you ever heard someone say, that they don’t fear going to hell because it’ll be one big party? Or that at least when they go to hell, they won’t be alone, implying that if others are suffering with them, it won’t be so bad? The truth is, in their ignorance, that don’t really know what they are saying. They don’t truly understand what hell will be like. I would argue that none of us fear hell enough. Why do I say this? Because in Luke chapter 8, verse 30 and 31, we learn that even the demons fear hell. It says:
“Jesus asked him, ‘What is your name?’ ‘Legion,’ he replied, because many demons had gone into him. And they begged him repeatedly not to order them to go into the Abyss.”
If hell is so undesirable that even the demons don’t want to go there, I would imagine that no human would either. The Bible says that the demons begged him repeatedly not send them to hell, or the Abyss. That sounds pretty serious to me. In this story, Jesus healed a man possessed by multiple demons. When he commanded the evil spirits to come out of him, they begged him not to order them to go into the Abyss. Instead, they begged him to let them go into a herd of pigs, which he did. This should raise an alarm within all mankind - not just unbelievers. I’m not sure what comes to your mind when you think about hell. But the reality is likely worse than anything you can imagine. It is so bad that even the demons don’t want to go there.
I used to think the worse aspect of hell was eternal separation from God. I imagined a great chasm, like the one referenced in Luke 16; that those in hell would be able to see heaven, and the blessings and happiness that believers in Christ enjoy, but would not be able to cross over. The Bible tells us that there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. This kind of behavior supports the imagery from Luke 16. If you were forever separated from the eternal joy of being in heaven and confined to eternal misery, I’m sure you could imagine yourself weeping and gnashing your teeth in anger and jealousy. But I think this picture is still incomplete. The Bible also says that for those in hell “the worms that eat them do to die, and the fire is not quenched”. I’m not exactly sure what that means, but it doesn’t sound good. And I still don’t think that is the entire picture. Eternal agony sounds horrific. Separation from God sounds unimaginable. But when the demons fear hell, we may need to even further adjust our thinking. So, the next time you hear someone making light of hell, you might want to remind them of this truth.