Journey with God and experience Heaven or don't and experience Hell.
I (Levi) need to clarify a statement I made in this message. I said "Hell was created when humans decided to do life without God." I misspoke. To say that human beings created hell actually doesn't line up with Scripture.
In Matthew 25:41 Jesus says that "the eternal fire [hell] was prepared for the devil and his angels." From that verse we must conclude that God (not humans) created hell.
However, from this verse we also learn that hell was not created or intended for humans. It was never God's will for human beings to experience hell. That's why there is no mention of hell in the Genesis accounts of creation. God created the Heavens and the Earth (no mention of hell) and His desire was for His created image bearers (human beings) to do life with God under His rule and reign.
So it is Biblically incorrect to say that human beings created hell. What human beings did do was break what God made good. Through their willful rebellion, they made it possible for all humans to go to hell one day if they continue to rebel from God and not believe in Jesus. Furthermore, through this sinful choice (the Fall) we now experience the good world God created in a broken way.
What I should have said and intended to convey in this sermon was that human beings brought the characteristics of hell (sin, death, destruction, injustice, brokenness) to God's good world by listening the serpent and rebelling from God. Also, Adam and Eve (Humans) opened up the possibility for other human beings to go to hell upon death. God doesn't desire this. This is not His will. His will is that no one should perish but that all should repent and believe in Jesus and be saved (2 Peter 3:9; Acts 16:31). Nor does God take pleasure or joy in sending people to hell, but God's justice and love demand that hell exist.
Hell is a real place just as Heaven is a real place. When I said that we can experience hell or heaven here on earth I did not mean that we can experience either realm in full. Paul says in 1 Cor. 13:12 "For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known." Upon death we will face the reality of one or the other in it's full breadth. Heaven is better than we can imagine, and hell is far worse.
We love the Bible here at Crossroads and Wes and I (Levi) do our best to root our teaching and preaching in God's inerrant and authoritative word. It is in light of further study of God's word that I felt like I needed to clarify what I said.
If you ever listen to one of our messages and have questions, Wes and I (Levi) would love to hear them and think through God's word together with you!
Cited Tim Mackie Sermon:
The Bible Project Heave & Earth Video: