Jesus said a lot about both places. He spoke of both Heaven and Hell as being real, literal, physical places and He described both places the eternal dwelling place for the soul. Furthermore, Jesus taught that all people have a choice to make, and that choice will determine their eternal destiny.
We find several descriptions of Heaven in the Bible (especially Rev chapters four and five), but no clear pictorial descriptions of Hell (read what the Bible does reveal: Is Hell a real place?). While we are not given a clear image of Hell, Jesus did speak of it. Jesus spoke about Hell more than anyone else in the Bible, and in doing so He revealed sufficient information for our understanding and gave explicit warnings of the dangers of Hell.
It’s interesting in that the apostle Matthew recorded more of Jesus’ teachings about Hell than did the other Gospel writers. That shouldn’t be surprising because in Matthew’s Gospel Jesus is presented as the coming Messiah and King. Matthew records more information about the Kingdom of Heaven than the others so he also records more information about the abode of the dead than the other gospel writers. In Matthew, Jesus makes a direct reference to Hell nine times as compared to Mark and Luke in which Hell is spoken of three times and not at all in John.
Let’s walk through the Gospel accounts and hear the words of Jesus regarding the place where unregenerate people will spend eternity.
Jesus’ Words About Hell and Eternal Judgment
The Gospel of Matthew, Direct References
- Matt 5:22 But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment. And whoever says to his brother, ‘Raca!’ shall be in danger of the council. But whoever says, ‘You fool!’ shall be in danger of hell fire.
- Matt 5:29 If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell.
- Matt 5:22, 29-30 And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell.
- Mat 10:28 “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.
- Mat 11:23 And you, Capernaum, who are exalted to heaven, will be brought down to hell; for if the mighty works which were done in you had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day.
- Mat 16:18 And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
- Mat 18:9 And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you. It is better for you to enter into life with one eye, rather than having two eyes, to be cast into hell fire.
- Mat 23:15 Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you travel land and sea to win one proselyte, and when he is won, you make him twice as much a son of hell as yourselves.
- Mat 23:33 Serpents, brood of vipers! How can you escape the condemnation of hell?
The Gospel of Mark
In Mark, Jesus mentioned hell only three times in one passage. However, in that passage, He gave a clear message of warning of the dangers of hell and the presence of flames of fire.
- Mark 9:43 If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter into life maimed, rather than having two hands, to go to hell, into the fire that shall never be quenched.
- Mark 9:45 And if your foot causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life lame, rather than having two feet, to be cast into hell, into the fire that shall never be quenched.
- Mark 9:47 And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye, rather than having two eyes, to be cast into hell fire.
The Gospel of Luke
- Luke 10:15 And you, Capernaum, who are exalted to heaven, will be brought down to hell.
- Luke 12:5 But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I say to you, fear Him!
- Luke 16:23 And being in torments in hell, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
Jesus also spoke of hell using other terms, such as “destruction,” “fire/flame,” and “condemnation/perishing.”
- Matt 7:13 Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it.
- Matt 7:19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.
- Mat 13:40 Therefore as the tares are gathered and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of this age.
- Mat 13:42 and will cast them into the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth.
- Mat 13:50 and cast them into the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth.
- Mat 18:8 If your hand or foot causes you to sin, cut it off and cast it from you. It is better for you to enter into life lame or maimed, rather than having two hands or two feet, to be cast into the everlasting fire.
- Mat 22:13 Then the king said to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
- Mat 25:30 And cast the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
- Mat 25:41 Then He will also say to those on the left hand, Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels:
- Mark 9:44, 46, 48 where Their worm does not die, And the fire is not quenched.
- Mark 12:40 who devour widows’ houses, and for a pretense make long prayers. These will receive greater condemnation.
- Luke 13:3 I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish.
- Luke 16:24 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.
- John 5:29 and come forth; those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation.
- John 15:6 If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned.
Hell is a Real Place
It’s a real place that we don’t want anyone to go to. The reality of Hell should encourage us to share the gospel of saving grace will all people. Only by coming to Jesus in faith, and trusting in His finished work on the cross to pay for one’s sins, can anyone escape the dangers of Hell. Tell people about the gracious forgiveness of sins that Jesus offers them and the new and eternal life that He desires to give to them.
When you can’t share the gospel with your words, share it by leaving tracts that tell people about God’s grace.
When you leave a tract, always be diligent to pray for the short gospel message. Pray that it be found by someone who is in need of Jesus’ saving grace, and pray that the person will have a tender heart and open ears to receive the gift Jesus desires to give them.
By the power of the Holy Spirit, even a small tract can help in turning a broken, sinful person from darkness to light.
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