It is time for a reality check. The particular reality of concern is something that will happen in the future. It is an absolute certainty!
Here is perhaps the most succinct presentation describing the fate of some people: “And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire” (Revelation 20:15).
The Bible nowhere describes or supports the concept of an ever-burning hell fire–or even a temporary hell, commonly called “purgatory”–in which bad people—”sinners”—will live for eternity while suffering the most excruciating and fiendish torture imaginable! However, the Word of God does reveal a penalty for sin, and that is death—utter destruction, an erasure of life and existence of any kind (compare Romans 6:23).
Concerning this bleak fate, it is avoidable. God has made it possible for humans to turn to their Savior, Jesus Christ, and, through repentance and the gift of the Holy Spirit, live righteous lives that will culminate in the gift of eternal life in the Family of God. God even says that He is, “…not willing that any should perish [in the lake of fire] but that all should come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9). Also, God “…desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Timothy 2:4).
“God is love” (1 John 4:8, 16). That is certainly proven by what He has done for the world–in giving His Son (who had been with Him from eternity) as a sacrifice for the sins of all who would believe in and accept Jesus Christ as the Savior and Master of their lives (compare John 3:16).
Let’s not now take any of this precious knowledge or our unparalleled opportunity for granted! Nor should we allow ourselves to let down and fall away from the Truth of God! Rather, we must all be the “more diligent” to make our own “call and election sure, for if [we] do these things [we] will never stumble; for so an entrance will be supplied to [us] abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (compare 2 Peter 1:10-11).
You see, this same God of love who has promised us eternal life, has also provided a solution for those who utterly reject Him, His Son and the glorious opportunity to live and serve in the Kingdom of God throughout the limitless future of eternity! That solution is eternal death! The lake of fire will be a real place, and those who rebel against God in utter defiance and intractable stubbornness will reap the frightful penalty of eternal destruction. They will become “ashes under the soles of… the feet” of the righteous (Malachi 4:3), and “they shall be as though they had never been” (Obadiah 16).
Just a bit of a reminder, a concerned warning—a reality check for each one of us to think about.