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I am a very optimistic kind of person all the time. So I suggest before we land our love ones in hell, perhaps we could begin trusting that somehow he or she was granted enough time to have experienced a death bed confession with the Lord, especially if you have been praying for them. I personally believe that we are all going to be very surprise as to whom we will be standing next to when we appear before the Judgment Seat of Christ. So instead of spending waking hours thinking that your love one is in hell, try to trust and believe that they were granted a few moment s to say Lord Jesus forgive me of my sins and come into my heart this moment, Amen!
Perhaps this is part of what Jesus had in mind in Luke 14:26-27 when He talked about counting the cost of becoming His disciple. He was not saying that we should not love those close to us on earth. He was saying that our devotion to God and His will must be so much greater that we are willing to give up our love or attachment to anyone or anything on earth (including those closest to us, and even our own lives) if that love or attachment comes between us and God. And, to me, part of our devotion to God would be trusting Him in His omniscience to deal with everyone with perfect, indisputable righteousness. That does not mean that everyone will be saved. But no one (not even those who are lost) will have grounds to question God's ultimate judgment of them. And if even the lost will not be able to question it, then certainly those who are saved by God's grace should have no reason to do so, either. As long as we have done our part to witness to Christ in our dealings with others, then, if they were to reject Him, the responsibility for that decision would be theirs alone. If we were to allow God's judgment of them (no matter how close to us they are or were in this life) to affect our joy in Christ and our service to Him, then we would be indicating that our love for those people is greater than our love for God.
Shantkumar S. Kunjam you question is: How can we live joyful knowing a loved one may be in hell? The first thing you need to establish is how does the scripture define the word "hell" which is an english word used 400 hundred years ago as a place where one buried/kept potatoes. First and foremost we know that the dead know nothing (Eccl:9:5:5 For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not any thing, neither have they any more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten.) Ps 115:17 The dead praise not the LORD, neither any that go down into silence. Ps 89:48 What man is he that lives, and shall not see death? Shall he deliver his soul from the hand of the grave? Selah. So we see that the dead are in the grave [hell] and that the dead know nothing. Jesus said that one who is dead is asleep in death. Joh 11:11 These things said he: and after that he said unto them, Our friend Lazarus sleepd; but I go, that I may awake him out of sleep. Joh 11:14 Then said Jesus unto them plainly, Lazarus is dead. Now we see that those who are dead and buried in the grave [hell] are asleep and will not live again until they are resurrected as Lazarus was as a type and a witness for us to-day. Those who are in the congregation of God, the called-out Assembly, those righteous ones of God from Adam until the return of the lord Jesus will be in the first resurrection... Re 20:6 Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years. Those who are ungodly and not a part of those who are saved will be resurrected at the White Throne Judgement time, after the 1,000 year rule of the lord Jesus. Re 20:5 But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. Notice: Revelation 20:11: And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire. The dead that are cast into the lake of fire are destroyed, gone as if they never existed. That is the end result of not believing and trusting in the Creator God of all things. Job 21:30 That the wicked is reserved to the day of destruction? They shall be brought forth to the day of wrath. Pr 10:29 The way of the LORD is strength to the upright: but destruction shall be to the workers of iniquity. Isa 1:28 And the destruction of the transgressors and of the sinners shall be together, and they that forsake the LORD shall be consumed. Mt 7:13 Enter you in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leads to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Ro 9:22 What if God, willing to shew his wrath, and to make His power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction: 2Th 1:9 Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power; When anything is destroyed it is everlasting, gone forever! I do not worship a God who would cause people to suffer for eternity in an ever burning hell like Dante's inferno. The belief in an ever burning hell punishment was a Greek pagan idea that was adopted by the Roman Catholic Church in its way to indoctrinate people to its belief system.
Of course this is a very difficult question to be answered. And I don't think there could be any easy answer. But there could be some answers which could be questioned by some. So here is my opinion If you are concerned about your loved one then you will not say "may be" that loved one is in hell. This is an evidence that you are not really concerned for the salvation of that person. Let me give you an example. In 1 Cor. 7:14 there is a statement "For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband; otherwise your children would be unclean, but now they are clean." The conclusion here is that when a believing husband or wife is concerned for the spouse's salvation, he/ she will do anything for that spouse's salvation and the Lord will honor their efforts, and as a result their children will be clean until the age they can make their own decision. This reasoning is supported by 1 Pet. 3:1-2, "Wives, likewise, be submissive to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word,they, without a word, may be won by the conduct of their wives, when they observe your chaste conduct accompanied by fear." So the bottomline here is that a person will do everything for the salvation of his loved one. There is another statement in Rev. 21:4, "And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes". The conclusion here is that believers will be satisfied with the judgment of God, and when they will see books of the concerned individuals, they will know that those individuals really did not belong to the fellowship of the believers, they have willfully chosen to be away from God and His people. And if any one still cannot live happily without those individuals and not willing to let God wipe away his/her tear, then be guaranteed, God will honor your decision and let you go to live in the fellowship of those persons. So, if you feel concerned, do anything and everything for the salvation of that person. Pray earnestly and the Lord will show you what can you do next. So be sure and do not remain 'may be'.
Read Ezekiel 33:1-20 You are like the watchman on the wall, there to warn the city if danger is coming, so the inhabitants have time to get organised and repel the danger. If you see danger approaching, but do not give warning, you are accountable. If, however, you do your job and raise the alarm, but the people ignore you, then you are not accountable. So, if you tell others of Jesus' Resurrection (Acts 10:39-43), that he is now made Judge of the Living and the Dead (Rev 22:12) and that He offers Forgiveness to all who will accept it from Him (John 1:12) then you have given warning as you are to do. You have told them the Good News (Romans 10:9). You are not accountable if the people ignore you. Trust that God calls all who belong to Him and will not let one single person be missed (Luke 15). Remember the words of Jesus, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age." (Matt 28:18-20) "If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes in his Father's glory with the holy angels.” ”(Mark 8:38) If you are a faithful watchman, then you have done all you can. You are not their judge, God alone judges, and you know that God's judgement is righteous and perfect, because God judges the heart (1 Cor 4:5 and others) “Yes, Lord God Almighty, true and just are your judgments.” (Rev 16:7) Knowing all this, you can enter into His Rest with peace and joy in your heart.
Faith in God dictates that you believe what He says or not-His word says that we will be rejoicing in Heaven and no pain or sorrow. He knew this concern well before the question was asked and yet His word says what it says. It would indicate that those who are in Heaven would be shielded from the bad things going on in earth as well as Hell. It is not for you to know who is Hell or not--It is a God thing! (Rev 21:3-4)
This is indeed a hard question and there have been some interesting and thorough replies already. I generally see this question as coming from a seeker of Jesus for whom this loss of loved one is keeping them from a decision about Jesus... I like the idea already said that we don't know fully the loved one is in hell, but to think through the answer, I will ask this question: You clearly love that person, if lives were switched and he is alive and you dead, possibly in hell, what would you hope for? Presumably, he would say to warn the other to avoid this place. I can then take them to Jesus' story in Luke 16:19-31 especially vs 27-28. I can say Jesus anticipated your question and this answer that you would seek to warn the loved one. Then I can bring it back to what would the loved one likely do... Yes! He too would seek to warn you as well, and to the first person I will ask what decision do you now want to make about Jesus to honor the hope of his loved one?
Presently no one is in hell. When you are with God, even if you know that the one you loved is in hell, you will not feel sorrow for it. You will feel that everything is fair. The real issue is now on earth, you feel sorry that your loved one may go to hell. One solution: If the loved is alive, give Good news, and pray. If the loved is not alive, assume that he/she repented at the last minute and accepted Jesus. Still, if you insist that you feel sorry that the loved will go to hell, pray to God.
It has always been explained to me that in heaven there will be a moment for tears for those who do not make, but after that, never again. The reason comes that after that moment of silence we will NEVER remember those who didn't make it and this will free our minds to be forever in His glory. But even though we know someone was not born again before their death, we don't know if they made a last second submission to Him. Many people, with their last breath, may ask to be cleansed of their sins and will be there waiting for you. But either way, God, in his infinite wisdom, has created a place you will never be able to comprehend here or ever fully grasp or experience when you're there. And He will have provided all that's necessary to make your eternal life there full, rewarding and without care. He is all faithful.
Firstly, don't hold God responsible. He is holy and good. He has grieved more than you could ever imagine over the loss of a single person. This was not His will. Secondly, if anyone is to blame then it is the devil and his minions and sin itself. Perhaps we should learn to cultivate a holy disgust for sin and compromise. Thirdly, don't beat yourself up. Unless if you were in a position where God specifically assigned you to go and speak the truth to someone, you haven't failed - the responsibility lies with the loved one and, ultimately, with God, who judges justly. Fourthly, live filled with hope and optimisim and focus on God's uncontainable goodness, light and love and care. Remember that God is compassionate to all that He has made, even those who are lost to Him forever. They enjoyed life, love, food, sunshine, air, sex, successes, failures, weddings, birthdays, Christmas, etc. I know there may be individuals who had such a miserable life that these things weren't available to them, but even in those circumstances God provides moments of joy. He provides life and joy to everyone good or bad without partiality and without finding fault. Fifthly, rejoice that there are many whom God has saved! Rejoice that He has saved **anyone** at all! We should rejoice in this. What a great gift is Jesus. What riches are available for those who believe. How rich is Heaven and the things of God. The whole world is blessed to have had the feet of Son of the Almighty Most High God walk upon it and show men how to live and serve and bless. The world would be a very awful place if He had never come - I'm not sure it would've made it this far. Praise God for His many goodnesses and graces.
GOD has those fallen human souls and the demons with which they will be 'intimately united' forever stationed like an incense burner right in front of His throne in a place of high honor, and our learning to accept this is referred to as our 'perseverance,' (Revelation 14:9-12). They may have been 'loved ones' in this fleshly life, but once they make the repeated and unalterable decision to 'permanently fellowship' with demons the way you have chosen to 'permanently fellowship' with Christ, that 'love' changes into something else. Ironically, you may love them even more, but now like you 'love' a cherished form of entertainment or like some men enjoy a truly finely made cigar. 'Eternal hell' is VERY real and was designed to permanently house immortal beings who fell from GOD's grace, (Matthew 25:41). It is NOT a place where individual human souls will suffer alone in eternal torment. Like us in the Holy Spirit, (only in a very twisted way), they will see themselves as integral parts of an immortal being. Just as we will see ourselves as integral parts of the 'Bride' of Jesus Christ, they will experience something similar only evil. The real difference is that they will lose their 'human' identity within this union and suffer based only on their degree of awareness. The most evil will be the most aware, like parts of a Body are more or less sensitive. The devil will be fully aware and have no place to hide from GOD's full wrath. Ironically, his 'honored place' so close to the presence of GOD will be the cause of his great suffering. His 'special people' will be there with him operating inside of his larger being. You will know on every level that your former 'loved one' is exactly where they repeatedly chose to be. You will be forever aware of the full efforts made by ALL of us to reach them with the 'way of escape' and how they truly wanted to reject it and end up there in that 'alternative' form of collective experience. You should bear in mind that GOD describes our own prayers like 'incense' rising before Him also, (Revelation 5:8, 8:4). He will truly enjoy hearing the 'prayers' of those inside that place of torment, because it will constantly bring glory and joy to those for whom justice has finally and forever been achieved. The only reason you might even imagine yourself feeling 'badly' for anyone there is because you do not yet grasp what 'evil' is and how truly terrible those choosing it become when operating TOGETHER. You cannot see the full extent of the wickedness, pain, misery, needless damage, confusion, fear, terror, filth and corruption it represents, or how right it is to see it 'burning' while forever acknowledging GOD's justice, His true holy pleasures, His unfettered joy, His marvelous creations, His unbreakable peace, the awe and reverence He inspires, His breathtaking purity, and His absolute incorruptibility. Their 'lying words' insolently spoke out what GOD Is not and now they will speak forever what He truly Is. That is a genuine form of 'praise,' and arguably His 'favorite' kind, which is why He stations these creatures right in the front row before His holy throne. While there is an 'infinite chasm' actually separating us from them, (in a very material sense), their experiences and 'prayers' will never leave GOD's side. Ironically, it is this 'holy fire' that will forever cause their torment and elicit this form of 'endless praise.' So while your own mind catches up with the reality of 'evil' and learns to see it as GOD truly does, (which will help you immensely), perhaps just realizing that if your loved one truly is 'lost forever,' they too will spend all of eternity in very close proximity to GOD in an ironically 'honored' place, praising Him and bringing Him great joy too. They will also have made their own personal choice, exercising the same liberty that GOD gave you to choose either good or evil, choosing over and over again to be exactly where they are...forever.
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