THERE WILL BE CONSEQUENCES FOR OUR ACTIONS! by Earl Sutton

 

In 1996 a grain ship, “Bright Field,” was heading down the Mississippi River near New Orleans, when it lost control, veered toward the shore and crashed into a riverside shopping mall. The impact demolished parts of the wharf and injured 116 people. According to the Coast Guard investigation, the ship’s owner and crew had failed to repair long-standing engine problems. This is a clear example of not doing what you should do and receiving the consequences of bad decisions.

            The Devil deceived Eve into thinking that there would be no consequences for eating the forbidden fruit (Gen. 3:1-7). God said, “But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, ye shall not eat of it lest ye die” (v.3) The Devil said, “Ye shall not surely die.” (v.4) Eve dilly-dallied with the temptation and contemplated the possibilities that the Devil had suggested and threw away all restrain and ate the fruit!  Why?  The Devil deceived her into thinking that there would be no consequences for sin.

            The Devil continues to lie to us today and tells our society that a little sin won’t hurt, a little indulgence is not a problem, a little transgression will never hurt anybody! The Devil tells us that we are only human and go ahead and enjoy sin. The Bible says, “The way of the transgressor is hard.” ( Prov. 13:15)

            Our society believes that it can live in disobedience to God’s will by practicing homosexuality and never suffer the consequences. The scriptures teach that there will be consequences for our actions. “Be not deceived: God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth unto his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption: but he that soweth unto the spirit shall of the spirit reap eternal life.” (Gal. 6:7-8) This basic principle applies to the physical world and spiritual realm as well. The word, “mocked” is a Greek word (mukterizete:) which means to turn one’s nose up at God. The point is that if a person sows to the flesh (homosexuality and sinful living) and turns up his nose at God, he shall go the way of all flesh, -- die and face the judgment of God where there will be consequences. (reap destruction – Gal. 6:8)

The scriptures emphasize the consequences of sin in other verses. Ezekiel said, “The soul that sinneth, it shall die.” (Ez. 18:4) Paul said, “The wages of sin is death.” (Rom. 6:23)  Over and over, again and again, the Bible under all circumstances, emphasizes that we reap what we sow and that sin is always followed by consequences.

            There is rebellion in the hearts and in the behavior of many people in our society today. In view of the fact that sin will always have consequences, what can we predict for the future? According to the basic law of sowing and reaping, the answer can best be given in the words of the prophet Hosea, “They sow the wind and they shall reap the whirlwind.” (Hos. 8:7) There is one time of sowing (while alive), and there will be two times of reaping. We reap in this life and also reap beyond this life in the hereafter. Sin brings forth its consequences both here and hereafter.

            People may do things without realizing the consequences of their actions, but one day there is going to be an accounting! (Rev. 21:8)                                                                                                                                                                                           

Hell - No Figure of Speech - Earl Sutton

Written by Earl Sutton, included in the weekly bulletin of the church of Christ at Elkins on 5/18/2014

HELL  IS  NO  FIGURE  OF  SPEECH!

By:  Earl Sutton

     Today the term “Hell” is used lightly, jokingly and as a minor threat. Some liberal preachers even refer to it as only a “metaphor,” but the word should carry with it the awesome impact of eternal (“Aionious”) damnation (Matthew 25:46).

     Today “Hell” has become a “figure of speech” or a place that we have created here on earth for ourselves! Why are some liberal preachers afraid to take Hell seriously? The denial of the true nature of Hell is, in fact, a basic denial of the truthfulness of God’s word.

     A 1976 Christianity Today article, “Putting Hell in its Place,” provides a typical example of a careless, “soft-line” liberal view where the author implies that preaching on this topic is too harsh!

     Today the modern evangelical movement finds a hard line on Hell too embarrassing and counterproductive and avoids the subject in their presentations. Today we need to preach that (1) Hell is eternal (Matt. 25:46) (2) Hell is a place of darkness (II Peter 2:4) (3) Hell is a place of fire (Matt. 13:42) (4) No rest in Hell (Rev. 14:11) (5) No relief in Hell (Luke 16) (6) No hope in Hell (Matt. 25:46).

     The BIBLE’S teachings on this subject are very clear that at the end of time, all will appear before Christ for judgment: and the wicked, those who have departed this life in disobedience to God, will be sent into an eternity of punishment (“Kolasin”) “Hell.”  (John 5:28-29)

     The New Testament is totally unambiguous on the duration of “eternal punishment.” Jesus expressed himself clearly and without room for any doubt. My friends, retribution for an ungodly life is eternal  --  without end.

     Today those who peddle the poison that Hell is only a metaphor are in reality trying to destroy the wholesome fear of God in others. The truth is unchanged. The BIBLE has spoken, and it plainly reveals the reality of eternal punishment called “Hell” which can be avoided by all “if” they will accept God’s way!