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The Furnace of Fire B

Grace To You / John MacArthur
The Truth Network Radio
September 17, 2021 4:00 am

The Furnace of Fire B

Grace To You / John MacArthur

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September 17, 2021 4:00 am

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Hell is a place of unrelieved torment for body and soul in varying degrees in Leslie worm never dies fire never goes out like never breaks sweet relief of death never comes. Send anyone to hell you might've even met people who say they can't embrace Christianity specifically because they find the thought of God sending people to help repulsive, so how direct should Christians be when talking about this doctrine. What does the Bible actually say about hell and most important, how you escaped from going there. John MacArthur digs into these often neglected issues as he focuses your attention on the seriousness of eternity and the gospel. God calls you to preach. It's part of his look at the parables of the kingdom, and now here's John, take your Bible and turn with me to Matthew chapter 13 Matthew chapter 13 verses 47 through 52. We come to the last of seven parables given by our Lord Jesus Christ in this 13th chapter in this one is the climax. This particular parable is a parable about judgment.

It is a parable about hell and the keynote of the parable is found in verse 50. The furnace of fire, where there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth on the same truth was taught in this parable of the wheat and the tares. As you can go back to verse 41 and see the Son of Man shall send his angels, and they will gather out of his kingdom all things that offend in them who do iniquity, and they shall be cast into a furnace of fire, where there will be wailing and gnashing of teeth. Look at verse 49 so shall it be at the end of the age when man's day is over and Jesus returns to set up his glorious kingdom. Then comes the judgment now this is not a a technical chronological eschatological layout. This is not trying to pinpoint every element of judgment every time and place and are we talking about the great white throne, or the sheep and the goats are the be missing judgment or whatever.

This is just a general statement that all in the world are caught ultimately in the net of judgment to be separated in the end, and you notice again, would you please in verse 49 of the angels are the executioners. The angels are the separators just as we saw in verse 41, just as we see in Matthew 24 the angels come with the Lord to act out judgment. Just as we see in Matthew 25 just as we see repeatedly in Revelation, particularly chapter 14 the angels are the agents of God's judgment.

So while the kingdom may for a while tolerate good and evil, growing together. The separation is moving closer and closer all the time. Jesus spoke of the same thing in Matthew chapter 25 when he said in verse 31 the Son of Man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit on the throne of his glory and what will he do when he comes it says and before him shall he gather all the nations, and he shall separate one from another separation and you will say to them on his right hand, ye blessed of my father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world and you save them on the left and apart from the accursed into everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels know what is this furnace of fire. What is we give you four truths about hell that I think will answer that question number one, hell is a place of on relieved torment is a place of unrelieved torment is a place of a horrible misery and that if the Bible defines it as darkness, outer darkness that is indeed picked darkness. Darkness is way out from the light impenetrable darkness. Darkness that closes in and it is darkness without the hope of life forever you ever been in the darkness and long for the daylight ever been in the darkness long for someone to turn the light on to be in that encroaching encompassing moving kind of darkness and know that for all the eons of eternity, you will never see light is how our Lord describes hell on relieved darkness forever with no hope of the light no hope of the dog in the Bible also says it is a fire now is not a fire that we would know as fire to burn something in this world, but fire is God's way of describing it because it is a tortuous unrelieved kind of fire more terrible than any fire that we would ever know. But fire describes the torment of the dam blackness describes the torment of the dam, no light, no light ever ever no relief from the suffering the agony and the pain forever and there's only two times in all of Scripture that we have any insight into how people respond to help the one is the Lord's parable in Luke 16 where he says the man cried out in torment and said my tongue front permitted in this point and the other is that constant statement of our Lord.

There will be weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth. The response to hell is not fun.

It is weeping that's crying, wailing, screaming and grinding of teeth in pain. The Bibles that sell it is a place of on relieved torment. Secondly, it is a place of unrelieved torment for both body and soul for both body and soul soul being the inner part when a person dies their soul goes out of the presence of God into the torment of hell. It may not be the full final lake of fire that comes after the judgment and the great white throne for that needs a transcendent body to endure it, but it is a torment just as well is illustrated by the rich man who in hell was tormented when a person dies.

Now their soul descends into that torment in the future there will be a resurrection of the bodies of the dam. They will be given a transcendent body that will then go into a lake of fire.

It'll be a body not like the body we have now will be a very different one will be resurrected just like we will, as Christians, we will be resurrected because this body could never live eternally in heaven right we have to have a transcendent body, a glorified body a different body and soul to the dam and they will be raised. John five. They will be raised in new bodies for the single purpose of being punished forever in those body for the Bibles tormented forever. They have to have a body to fit that eternal torment and that's why Jesus in Matthew 1028 said fear not them that can store the body, but fear him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell is he hello, soul and body. Some people think it's just bad memories know it isn't just bad memories. It isn't just the inner thinking processes.

It is that body as well. Transcendent eternal bodies greater than anything we have on this earth are going to be given to the dam so that they can suffer in those bodies forever. And that's the only reason that they'll have those body with the present body man couldn't endure. Hell, you, the body that we have now be consumed in a moment so as God fits the redeemed with new bodies for heaven. He fits the damned with new bodies for hell. We know little about them from two things the Lord said, he said.

First of all, the worm die is not what he mean by that.

When a body goes into the grave and the decay worms descendent of that body and to begin to consume that body and the worms will die when the food is gone. So once the body is consume the worms die.

But in hell the worms never die because the body though it is continually being consumed is never consume so the worm never dives in other words the Lord was saying the unrelieved torment of body goes on and on and it says. Also, the fire is not quenched. Now fire always goes out when the fuel is gone but the fuel will never be gone.

Though the burning goes on, the fuel is never consume. And so you have unrelieved torment of body and soul. And that brings me to the third thought you have, in hell a place of unrelieved torment of body and soul in varying degrees in varying degrees. In other words, for some people, hell will be worse than others. For all who were there will be horrible. It will be ultimate suffering. There will be no relief for that. But there will be even more severe degrees of suffering for so says in Hebrews 10 of how much more severe punishment shall they be thought worthy who have trodden underfoot the son of God, the blood of the covenant unholy think people who have stepped on Jesus Christ, but rejected his cross will no greater hell than those who have not. There will be degrees. Just as there will be degrees of reward in heaven, we saw that also. I think in Matthew chapter 11 when it said it will be more tolerable for Sodom and for you.

In other words, it's only relative is going to be tolerable for anyone but it'll appear to be more tolerable for them than for you because of what you've experience you had Jesus Christ in your city. They did and you rejected him with more light. Therefore, hell will be more severe for you, then you have of course that incredible parable in Luke 12 for the Lord says to the servant who knew and didn't do right many stripes to the servant who didn't know and didn't do right a few stripes so hell will be on relieved torment of body and soul in varying degrees. John Gerstner says hell will have such severe degrees that a sinner were he able would give the whole world. If his sins could be one less.

And fourthly, hell is a place of unrelieved torment for body and soul in varying degrees endlessly endlessly. The worm never dies fire never goes out light never breaks the sweet relief of death never comes endlessly.

The only reason or the only way in which we in this life can even make it through trials and pain and suffering and disease is because we believe the be an into it but they won't have that you can imagine the resultant insanity that will come when you say are you sure it's everlasting.

It's just as everlasting as heaven is because in the same verse the Lord use the same terms. Matthew 25, 46, these shall go away into everlasting punishment. The righteous into everlasting life. Whatever everlasting life is in terms of its length, so as everlasting punishment. That's hell.

God never prepared it for people prepared it for the devil and his angels, but people choose to go there inconceivable misery. Some people have been in this kind of torment in their souls, waiting for that body for thousands of years in the no closer to the end than they were when they began to wonder Jesus had to teach this doctrine. So how do you avoid you avoid hell only by the receiving of Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior. If you don't appropriate the kingdom to see if you don't take the treasure if you don't purchase the pearl of great price. There's no way out John Bunyan that great saint of God wrote this in hell, thou shalt have none but a company of damned souls with an innumerable company of devils to keep company with the while, thou art in this world. The very thought of the devils appearing to the mix. I flesh to tremble and dine here ready to stand upright on my head, but all what will thou do when not only the supposition of the devils appearing but the real society of all the devils of hell will be with the howling, roaring and screeching in such a hideous manner that thou will be even a die with sand and ready to run stark mad again for anguish and torment. If after 10,000 years, and then should come.

There would be comfort.

But here is thy misery here that must be forever when thou see asked what an innumerable company of howling devils, thou art amongst thou shalt think this again this is my portion forever when thou hast been in hell. So many thousand years as there are stars in the firmament or dropped in the sea or sands on the seashore. Yet thou hast to lie there forever oldest one word ever will look torment guys so many are in the net. Moving to that inevitable furnace of fire that leads us to the fourth and final point, the proclamation saw the picture.

Principal Carol. The proclamation is in verse 51.

Look at Jesus said to them if you understood all these things literally. The verb understood is put together. Have you put all this together and you got this all put together in your minds that this form of the kingdom is good and evil, going together that the good is going to continue to permeate continue to grow continue influence that in order to be a part of the kingdom you have to purchase by giving all you have for all.

Christ is have you put it all together and you see that it's going to go along like this with good and evil until the end and then comes a final separation. Do you have and they said on the M yes Lord, understand it, understand, and I believe he accepted the correctness of their affirmative answer otherwise you couldn't of said what he did in verse 52 he saying that is it. Do you understand this.

Why does he say that to them.

Listen to me because back in 938. He saw the world as a harvest moving to judgment.

He saw that God would come and put that sickle and the harvest and he said pray with me that the father would send for the laborers send forth evil into his harvest to warn men. And so in chapter 10.

He called the disciples didn't edit chapters 11 and 12.

He trained and prepared the disciple in a chapter 13, he taught the disciples and now he says are you ready to go out and be those mourners in the harvest are you ready to go out with the message and they say we we we've got it. We understand it and so this is what he says.

Then, here's what you're like. Verse 52 every grandma to's. That's a word that we translate scribe, but it means it a learner teacher and interpreter of the law. The Old Testament, every trained teacher is instructed. And that's from the verb monthly 20 is disciple concerning the kingdom of heaven. Now he's disciple them concerning the cancer talk about that every one of you prepared, trained learners have been discipling the things of the kingdom of your train you're prepared now that's that's what he said. In fact, you could translate it. You are now discipled biblical scholars and teachers. That's what a scribe was really he was a student and interpreter, a transmitter of Scripture.

He was known as a theologian, a lawyer and a teacher and preacher.

They were members of the Sanhedrin. They were acknowledged authorities on the Old Testament and tradition. They were called Rabbi they were influential and he saying I've done the same to you, just like the Jews do with their scribe. I've discipled you I've made you into discipled biblical scholars and teachers and now here's what you are like verse 52. You're like a man who is the head of the house who brings out of his storehouse things new and old, was in the Lords is not discipled. I've trained I've prepared you I've nurtured you so that you could be the laborers to go into the harvest and worn and now you are like a man who is the head of his house and the man it was ahead of his house had a storehouse and out of that storehouse. He dispensed two people there needs they needed a certain kind of food they needed a certain kind of clothing than it is a certain kind of care.

Whatever it was they needed. He dispensed and he was wise enough to dispense the new and the old, so he didn't always give out the news so that the old ultimately became useless. It's kind like the leftovers you know once a week you going to get him because if you don't get them. They're going to get thrown away ultimately and the wise head of a household dispenses the old with the new imbalance being a steward of everything that he possesses, and the Lord says this is what you're like now you have a storehouse and that storehouse is full with all new what you mean. They knew the Old Testament and now they had heard the mysteries of the kingdom. They knew the old covenant truth and that the dawn of the of the new covenant was coming upon them, they could not only tell them about the Old Testament and Jewish tradition, but they could dispense the new mysteries of the kingdom right. They were one up on the scribes. All the scribes had was the old stuff. The old stuff.

The old stuff but he says you're the householder who has the all in the new and in perfect balance. God you and train you and prepared you to spread it out. It's interesting verb its use there. It says it that the man is head of the house brings forth and literally means to fling out or to scatter abroad. In other words, you got all his treasure out fling it out. It talks about liberality and richness is a lot there. Now that you've been discipled. Now that you are trained biblical scholars and teach fling it out. Given the old and the new and perfect balance that which God said in the past and that which is new in the form of the king. They see what he saying to them.

This all comes out of chapter 9 verse 38 men are on the way to hell.

I want to see how the kingdom is going to be good and evil, but always go to the separation. And now you know this now dispense it proclaim it love.

I submit you that I message based on this is hell that's on this world is going to hell. The parable in Matthew 22 the Lord gives a very similar illustration as a wedding. Lots of people show up in the wedding but then the king comes and the wedding has gathered everybody but the king comes in. He sees this guy doesn't have a wedding garment is what you doing here you have a wedding in other words, you got caught in the net of the kingdom, but you're not really one of the real ones you don't have a wedding garment and it says the man was speechless. He had nothing to say that no claim to make, and the Lord said time. I've been throwing it out or darkness for many are called your chose. Same principle, the kingdom net catches a lot of people but not all that are caught are going to be part of the king. We have a tremendous responsibility.

It's given unto us to know the mysteries of the kingdom is, but none of them isn't given we have what they need and call sentencing presents five knowing. Therefore, the terror of the Lord we persuade men. If you can't get your heart exercise about the fact that people are dying and going to hell every second you breathe in the some wrong reason that's the epitome of selfishness are Christianity today is loss to some you must tell people the truth of its prey.

Now we know father that we know have you understood these things.

Yes, we understand, then we are trained biblical scholars and teachers who are to be like the head of the house, flinging out this treasure of both old truths and new that men might be warned of the harvest, the separation, the net father, help us to be faithful to set aside their frivolity and foolishness of life for what really matters men's eternal souls.

Father I pray that you bring those who need so much to come.

May no one in this place think they can escape the net. May no one think it is true. Your spirit drive to embrace Christ that they may know the joy and bliss of eternal life here and now. Forever in your print crisis you been listening to John MacArthur here on grace to you. John is a pastor, author and Chancellor of the Masters University in seminary today. John showed you what the Bible says about hell it's truth that should motivate all of us to evangelize to share the good news of salvation with a lost and dying world. The message you just heard is part of John's series of lessons for Matthew 13 titled the parables of the kingdom, John.

I can imagine listeners hearing this and wondering how to apply this teaching on the parables of the kingdom to their lives. So talk about that. What do you hope people will take away from this study.

While the parables always illustrates some aspect of salvation, and so they are relevant to any believer any person who is a believer needs to understand the wide range of spiritual truths coming out of the parables that relate to salvation. We are we are redeemed people they they apply to us, primarily in helping us understand the world in which we live, helping us to understand, for example, the sower and the soils the wheat and the tares, the mustard seed 11. The hidden treasure. The pearl of great price the dragnet.

These all relate to the issue of evangelism and how were dealing with, with hearts and they describe for us the condition of fallen people and how the word of God works. They describe for us the church being both wheat and tares, and what that means and how it's going to be resolved in the end, so there more about understanding the nature of the kingdom, then they are absorbed up practical living. You know what I'm saying. I mean II think there parables of Jesus gives about talents and how you use your talents, but even those are related to salvation. It is how we understand the kingdom you can't really understand the current form of the kingdom of heaven. Unless you understand the parables because they describe it, and they define it. I would say just from a personal standpoint when I came to understand the meaning of the parables. It completely redefined my expectations for ministry and that's why I think the Lord gave them you have to understand what you're going to see happen and he defines it all in the parables the parables of the kingdom comes in eight CDs or MP3 downloads with the downloads of course are free of You can order the CDs get a copy of the book called parables. You can order all of this today from Grace to you free shipping on US orders and keep in mind friend with the CDs you get more teaching then we have time to err on the radio, pick up the book titled parables or the audio series. The parables of the kingdom. When you contact us today for the HCD album call toll-free 855 grace or our order number again 855 grace and our web address if you'd like to download the eight MP3s to your smart phone there available free of Also, as John mentioned, you can order his book, simply titled parables.

It shows you what Jesus said about the kingdom of God in your salvation, and parables like the pearl of great price. The four soils. The persistent widow and many others. The book costs 1475 and shipping is free to enrich your understanding of these stories with purpose, pick up a copy of John's book titled parables when you call 855 grace or you can go to our website that's now for John MacArthur. I'm Phil Johnson reminding you to watch grace to you television this Sunday and then be here next week when John looks at how to sacrifice and give to the Lord with the joyful heart as John launches his study titled God's plan for giving.

Don't miss the next 30 minutes of unleashing God's truth one verse at a time on grace to you


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