“Therefore consider the goodness and severity of God: on those who fell, severity; but toward you, goodness, if you continue in His goodness. Otherwise you also will be cut off.” —Romans 11:22
Most Americans believe in heaven ... and yes, most Americans believe in hell. That’s according to the Pew Research Center. In a recent study, the organization found that 72 percent of Americans say they believe in heaven, defined as a place “where people who have led good lives are eternally rewarded.” Additionally, 58 percent say they also believe in hell, a place “where people who have led bad lives and die without being sorry are eternally punished.” Let's take a moment to look at why we don’t want to spend eternity in hell, and why we should rather spend eternity in heaven.
In hell, we would be separated from the presence of God: We will be completely cut off from His power, glory and blessings: “These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power” (II Thess. 1:9).
In hell, we would face absolute torment: Outer darkness, weeping and gnashing of teeth, an unquenchable fire. Once you have died, there is no way to change your destination. Your fate is sealed (Luke 16:26).
In hell, our stay would be eternal: The punishment is described as “everlasting” and an “eternal” fire (Matt. 18:8, 25:41, 46). In this life, everything has an end. But in hell, it’s as if time stands still—it is never-ending.
In heaven, we would be in God’s house (John 14:1-6), in the presence of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit: Imagine spending eternity with the most awesome power in the universe: “Please, show me Your glory,” Moses asks God in Ex. 33:18.
In heaven, we would be in an imperishable, immortal body: In addition to our own body’s deterioration, we hurt when we see the deterioration of others (Eccl. 11:7-12:8). But in heaven, we will no longer experience sickness, tragedy and death: “Death is swallowed up in victory” (I Cor. 15:54).
In heaven, we would rejoice: None of the sad things that we experience here on earth will trouble us in heaven (Rev. 21:4). It is an eternal place of joy.
In heaven, we would hear, “Well done, good and faithful servant": Those who are righteous, obedient and faithful to God will hear many compliments from God (Matt. 25:21, 34; Heb. 11:16).
You can’t find a better place to go than heaven. Do you want to go there? Are you ready to go there?