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Why I Believe - Why I Believe in Life After Death, Part 2

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram
The Truth Network Radio
August 29, 2022 6:00 am

Why I Believe - Why I Believe in Life After Death, Part 2

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram

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August 29, 2022 6:00 am

Do you believe in heaven and hell? Are they specific places or just concepts? Is there any real evidence that points to a literal heaven and a literal hell? Chip explains what the Bible actually teaches about hell. And answers the serious question: How could a loving God send people to hell? Chip brings clarity and helpful insight.

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Do you believe in heaven and hell? Are they real places or just concepts? Is there any real evidence that points to a literal heaven and a literal hell?

And if so, what will they be like? Want to know? Stay with me. Thanks for joining us for this Edition of Living on the Edge with Chip Ingram. I'm Dave Druey, and Chip's our Bible teacher for this international discipleship ministry focused on helping Christians live like Christians.

We're in the middle of Chip's series, Why I Believe. Now let me tell you, today's program is really important. It could potentially change your life for all of eternity. So if you happen to miss a portion of it, let me encourage you to catch up through the Chip Ingram app.

It's a great way to listen to Living on the Edge anytime. Now as we join Chip for the second half of his talk, he continues revealing what the Bible says will happen when we die. So let's get started. You see, God doesn't judge people on the basis of their intentions or their emotions. Jesus is fair and loving and kind and no one is going to get a raw deal.

And he also will respect the dignity of every human being. So your deepest yearnings and desires, your real ones, whether it's more of God or none of God, he says in eternity, that's what you're going to get. The fourth major truth is that every person will spend eternity in heaven with Christ and fellow believers or in hell separated from God forever. Matthew chapter 25, Jesus ends a parable talking about the sheep and the goats and he says to those who refuse him, they will go away to eternal punishment but the righteous to eternal life. Now God does not desire that any perish but these are facts.

You don't hear this very often. Jesus talked about hell a lot. He talked about heaven a lot.

He talked about judgment a lot and I'm not sure why but we don't talk about it hardly at all. And yet we all have this inner sense, this God awareness that we're going to have to give an account. What I want you to know is that it's not God's desire that any would perish. In fact, the apostle Paul would say Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners. Jesus would say, verily, verily, that's the old King James, I love it. Verily, verily, I say unto you, he that hears my voice and believes on him that sent me has present tense eternal life and doesn't come into judgment but has passed from death to life. What I want you to know is that there is a real judgment and this judgment will be forever and ever and ever and it's based on how we respond to the Lord Jesus. I'd like you to just pause for just a minute. I want that to sink in. I'll confess to you, I don't think a lot about heaven and hell myself.

I mean not near as much as I need to. But even as I was reviewing and praying through this before I wanted to share it with you, there was one line in my notes speaking to myself was what would happen, Chip, if you actually believed that heaven was as real as it is? What would that do to your priorities, Chip?

How many of the distractions and the media and the Facebook and the stuff that just gets me distracted when I say that's so trivial? And what would happen if I believed? What would happen if we believed that there is a heaven and there's a hell and that our neighbors and our friends and our family, there is a judgment coming? I mean the same Jesus that has said to us, come unto me, all you that labor and are heavy laden. The same Jesus that we're trusting in and we know that he's our savior and has forgiven us and has been so real. He's the same Jesus that says, depart from me, I never knew you. I'd like you, if you would, even as I continue to speak, to think about that one person that you know doesn't know Christ and make an internal commitment inside that you're going to pray and then you're going to initiate some level of relationship to communicate the love of Christ regardless of how they respond. Okay, now you want to get to the good news?

Because this is a great message. Do you want to know what heaven's going to be like? I can only give you a snapshot. And then I will give you a quick snapshot about what hell's going to be like. And then as I promised, for some of you, you're kind of squirming inside. You know, I can feel it right now. And you have this sense that wowee, man, this is heavy and I think I know what I need to do and I want to respond and a lot of thoughts are going through.

You just relax. God, God's going to speak to you. And here in just a couple minutes after I describe heaven and I describe hell, I want to give you a chance to put your faith in Christ to know that without a doubt, you will spend eternity with him forever and ever solely based on what Christ has done for you. So let's get a quick preview of heaven. This is very exciting. First of all, we know that God is there.

I mean, and that makes it awesome. Chapter 21 of Revelation, you want to hear a little bit what it's like? Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth for the first heaven and the first earth passed away and there was no longer any sea. I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from God prepared as a bright beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, now the dwelling of God is with men and he will live with them and they will be his people and God himself will be with them and will be their God. And listen to this, he will wipe away every tear from their eyes. There'll be no more death or mourning or crying or pain for the old order has passed away. He who is seated on the throne said, I am making everything new.

Write this down for these words are trustworthy. Heaven is going to be a place that has warmth and beauty and light. It's going to be a place where relationships are wonderful.

Can you imagine no comparison, no envy, no jealousy, incredible accommodations, right? Jesus is preparing a place. You get a fresh start. You get a new nature, no more struggling with guilt or I should have done this, I shouldn't have done that. A new nature, a new body, a new vocation.

You know at the very end of chapter 22 it talks about commerce and cities and works and you know I believe there's going to be music and culture and jobs. I mean it's not like floating around on clouds sipping iced tea. Heaven is a very real place. Think of what the Garden of Eden would have been like if there was never any sin and then think of putting that on spiritual steroids if you will. And heaven is going to be everything that God originally planned except exceedingly better because you will have tasted and known what it was like on a fallen earth. You'll have purpose and rest and protection and commitment and peace, unbridled joy, celebration and worship and laughter. You'll learn, you'll grow, you'll have friendships, you'll explore the infinite majesty of God. And it'll go on forever and ever and ever. There's banquets, there's meals, there's celebrations, there's family reunions, there's adventure, there's purpose.

And are you ready? There's fulfillment at the deepest level. That's what heaven's going to be like. You know that's a lot to look forward to and as I read through those men and women that have made the greatest impact in the world, they have this very clear picture of a very real heaven with very real rewards that really matters. And they have this sense that how they live every single day of their life has a direct correlation to the quality of their experience in heaven. And I'm not there yet, but I want to get there. I want to get to where I really think about heaven and eternity more and more and God would grant me an eternal perspective.

Because when you have that, a lot of temptations are not very tempting. Well, what is hell going to be like? Well, first and foremost, God is not there.

2 Thessalonians 1, 9. Punishment and torment, varying degrees of punishment based on people's culpability in response to the truth. Words like outer darkness, weeping, wailing, gnashing of teeth, and it's forever.

Now, some of these for sure are metaphors. You can't have fire with light and darkness, but some of you have lost a child. It's a sorrow like no other. Some of you have been betrayed by a mate. You've gone through a horrendous divorce.

Some of you had a great job opportunity and decided not to take it and then it turned out awesome and what you realize is regret, regret, regret. Some of you have been clinically depressed and life was so dark and it felt like there's no hope. Those are the kind of emotions that are typical of hell. Hell is not a place where people are, you know, hey, you got a Bud Light?

Let's watch a movie. Hell is not a joke. Hell is a place that God, in response to the dignity of your individual choices, said if you want your own way, you can have it.

I think C.S. Lewis aptly said, there are some who say to God, thy will be done, and there's others who God says, thy will be done. God does not desire anyone to spend eternity apart from him. In fact, he did not want that so much that Jesus came to die in our place to pay for our sin and the Holy Spirit moment by moment, even at this moment, is wooing and drawing and convincing and convicting and saying, come, come, come, let me forgive you, let me love you. Get on a path of life with me. Hell is like missing the last train, taking the wrong turn, making the big wrong decision, and then beating yourself up forever by yourself alone. Well, let me finish with, I think, an important question that needs to be asked and answered. Why must there be a hell?

First, man's dignity and freedom. God will not force you to be in company with him. Love always requires that I have the opportunity to say yes, the opportunity to say no. And hell is a place that God has reserved to say, I so respect your individual choice that if you reject me, though it breaks my heart, it is a place where you can go to be apart from me. Second, God's holiness and justice demand a hell. You say, what do you mean by that, Chip?

Here's what I mean by that is that we get soft in our thinking. Can you imagine a heaven where Mother Teresa and Hitler, it's the same place for both of them? There's not a loving God if there's not justice. Can you imagine, for those of us that have a family, or think of your top three closest friends, someone walking into the room and going, bam, bam, bam, and shooting them, and then you're in the courtroom and they come before the judge and you're expecting, they have to pay for this, and the judge goes, you know, it's okay, I just think they had a bad day. And you would say, where's the justice?

What kind of person are you? You see, God has to judge sin and there has to be a place for sin to be judged, and that's hell. The third reason is sin is serious, it demands a hell. Sin is like a cancer that hit the planet through the human race. Sin brought about death.

Are you ready? Sin actually caused the Son of God to have to come to live a perfect life, be rejected by the Father, die, rise from the dead. Sin was the reason that God's great love had to be demonstrated. Price tag for sin is super, ultimately, infinitely high, and so the judgment for sin is eternal. Finally, there had to be a hell because evil must be defeated, and there needs to be a place for those who've been defeated.

The Scripture says that Satan and the demons were thrown into the lake of fire. See, the real question for every single person on the earth is not just, is there life after death? Most cultures, science, the Bible, anthropology, there's a lot of evidence that when we die, there is an afterlife. And what the Bible is very clear on is that you will either be judged and spend eternity with your Heavenly Father, or you will be judged by your own behavior as rejecting God and be apart from Him forever.

So here's my question. Will your eternal future be a blissful adventure or a horrible choice? And I have to believe, I have to believe for many, many, many right now you want it to be a blissful adventure. And if you're asking, how can I have that, can I ask you to bow your head right now and bow your heart? And I want to pray for you, but this is between you and God, and saying words after me does not make a Christian. This is a moment where you say in your heart of hearts, I have sinned against a holy God. I've done things wrong and I'm going to own that right now and I'm going to ask Him to forgive me and cleanse me and make me His son or daughter solely based on what Jesus did on the cross in my place. And if you want to do that right now and you don't know exactly what words to use, you can use mine. And you repeat after me from your heart, dear Father, I confess to you right now, I have sinned.

I've missed the mark. I know I've done lots of things wrong. I actually deserve to be punished. But I thank you that you sent Jesus to take my punishment. Today I believe that He paid the price for my sin on the cross.

And I believe that it's true because He rose from the dead. I'm asking you, will you give me the free gift of eternal life? I choose to trust in Him and I ask you to fill me with your spirit right now.

I want to follow you all the days of my life. In Jesus' name. What I want you to know is that God, if you could picture Him leaning over the edge of His throne, that's what He's doing. There's a party going on in heaven because many, many, many, many people have prayed that prayer with me and you meant it sincerely in your heart. Now let me encourage you, tell the best Christian you know what you've done. Get into God's word and find a great church that teaches the Bible and walk with Him with all your heart. You have an amazing future today and even more amazing one in the days ahead in heaven.

God bless you and keep pressing ahead. Before we do anything else in today's broadcast, I want to pause. I don't want to go anywhere. I don't want to talk about anything else. I want to talk to you. You heard me as I was teaching this group, give what's called the gospel.

It's good news. I explained to them that they could have eternal life if they would repent, have a change of mind, and turn with all their heart to Christ. Admit that they have sinned and fallen short of God's glory and ask Him to forgive them and come into their life based on Christ's work on the cross and His resurrection. And you know, I saw people come to know Jesus as their personal Savior and begin a brand new life and I want to give that opportunity to you right now. If you have never received Christ, I want you to bow your head if possible and close your eyes if possible. And if not, then listen very, very carefully and say to Him, Almighty God, you have made all that there is and you made me. And I confess today that I've certainly done many things wrong, that I'm not perfect.

And so I fall short of your glory. I believe and put my faith in Jesus today that He died on the cross to pay for my sin, that He rose from the dead to prove that it's true. And I ask you, Lord Jesus, be my Savior.

Forgive me. Come into my life right now. Your word promises as many as receive Christ. To them, you give the right of eternal life. I believe and I receive you right now into my life.

Thank you for forgiving me and help me follow you all the days of my life. You know, it's a simple prayer, but it's a life-changing decision. We all make certain decisions that change the whole course of our life.

Sometimes it's a decision to get married or sometimes it's a decision to have a child. But this is a decision that changes your eternal future. You are a brand new spiritual baby. And what the Bible says is spiritual babies need milk to grow and they need a family to support them.

The milk is God's word. And we want to encourage you right now to go to where we have some resources to help you get into God's word and understand what's happened to you. Second, let me encourage you to text or call the best Christian you know and tell them today, this is what I did. I just prayed to receive Christ. They will be thrilled. And then this weekend, find a Bible teaching church and go to it. You won't understand everything at first, but that's okay.

Babies don't know a whole lot, but what you need is a lot of love. Welcome to the family and God bless you. Thanks, Chip.

And before we go on, let me take just a quick second and talk a bit more about the resource Chip just mentioned. It's called Starting Out Right and it's absolutely free. This tool will help you gain a clear biblical understanding of what it means to put your faith in Jesus. And that's our whole mission here at Living on the Edge, helping Christians really live like Christians. So let us help you get started in your faith journey. You can request this resource by calling 888-333-6003 or by visiting and clicking on the New Believers button.

That's or call 888-333-6003. Well, Chip, before we go, you were telling me earlier about a story you heard not too long ago that really challenged you to be more intentional about witnessing to others. So as a place to end this program, would you mind sharing that story with our listeners?

I'd be glad to, Dave. I saw a video recently that literally blew my mind. It was Penn Jillette of the Penn & Teller. You've probably seen him on TV, the magicians. And he does this video that is astounding.

He's an avowed atheist. But a man came up to him after one of the shows and said how much he enjoyed it. And he said, by the way, I've really been praying for you. And then he pulled out a small New Testament and gave it to him. And he goes, I hope you won't be offended. And then Penn has this amazing response. He goes, offended?

Absolutely not. And then he made this comment. He said, if you actually believe that you have the truth, if you actually believe there is a God, and if you actually believe that is the only way to heaven, you would hate me.

I mean, how much would you have to hate me to not tell me? And so he said, I took that New Testament and I thanked the guy. And I thought to myself, isn't it amazing the clear logic of an atheist who would say, if we actually believe that Jesus is the way for us not to share that with people, his phrase, how much would we have to hate them?

And that really struck me. And what I've watched, and I'm sure I've experienced it as well, is I think we have a generation of Christians that we want to be so sensitive and maybe sometimes we get so much flack when we say we're a Christian or start to share our story or share our faith, we actually aren't telling people. Or maybe the bigger reason is we're afraid they're going to ask us a question and we're going to look dumb or narrow or bigoted.

In fact, I saw some research recently about millennial Christians and the percentage of them that honestly feel like it's wrong to share their faith because it might come off as being judgmental is just a tragic shift of what's happened in our culture. Here at Living on the Edge, we have created a resource and it's been a big part of my journey called Why I Believe. It's a book, it's a small group study that we have put together so that ordinary, regular people like you can talk about your faith in a way that is non-judgmental, in a way that's factual, that's clear, that's simple, that's articulate, where you can intellectually hold your ground and where in a way that you can say, this is what I believe and why.

And here's my question. How much would we have to hate people to not prepare ourselves to give an answer for the hope that's in us? I'm not trying to cast some layer of guilt across you as our listeners, but what I am saying is we have to come to grips with the command to go into all the world, to share Christ, to love people. And if you can't say why you believe and that holds you back, all I want you to know is we want to help you.

Thanks, Chip. Well, to get your hands on the Why I Believe book or the small group study, visit or call 888-333-6003. These tools will not only help fortify your own convictions, but will help you pass them along to the next generation, too. And during this series, we've discounted Chip's book and the study guides, so take advantage now. Again, to order these resources, call 888-333-6003 or go to

App listeners, tap Special Offers. As we wrap up, I want to thank those of you who make this program possible through your generous financial support. Your gifts help us create programs, purchase airtime, and develop resources to help Christians live like Christians. Now, if you've been blessed by the Ministry of Living on the Edge, would you consider sending a gift today? You can do that when you visit or the Chip Ingram app. And now you can text the word DONATE to 7-4141. That's the word DONATE to 7-4141. Well, join us next time as Chip continues his series, Why I Believe. Until then, this is Dave Drouy saying thanks for listening to this Edition of Living on the Edge.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-04 20:41:12 / 2023-03-04 20:50:41 / 9

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