Monday, October 7, 2013

HELL – Does It Really Exist and Why Would a Loving God Send Anyone There?

Hell is compared to a garbage dump

During Jesus’ time on earth, he likened hell to a place that the residents of Jerusalem were familiar with known as “Gehenna” – the city dump of Jerusalem.  Have you ever spent any time at a garbage dump?  Can you imagine living at one?  It is hot.  There is smoke and heat due to the smoldering and spontaneous combustion of the trash as it is compressed and decomposes.  The stench is offensive to the nostrils, and the filth, dirt and grime become a part of you.  I visited the dump of Manila in the Philippines in 1981.  At that time people lived “on” and “at” the dump.  They scrambled as the trucks dumped their loads to compete with the sea gulls to salvage anything that was still “good.”  They made their shelters from the debris, furnished their “homes,” and quite possibly ate what had been thrown away.  While the memory of that day’s visit is distant, I remember that evening there was no talking or discussion of what we had seen and experienced, none of us were hungry, and all we wanted to do was to take a shower to wash off what we had experienced.  That was our reaction to, at most, a couple of hours experience.  It made a tremendous impression on my life and I believe it would have for the people of Jerusalem as well, as an illustration they could understand.

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