Hey, I forgive you – welcome to Heaven.
There are two commonly held ideas that people have about God. One is that He is a tyrant and will send you to hell, just because you didn’t believe in, or didn’t want, to follow Jesus. The other commonly held idea, is that God is so loving, that if we die without having accepted Jesus into our hearts, He will say to us, “Hey, I know you ignored everything I ever said to you. You didn’t pay any attention to the instructions I gave in my Word. But never mind, I love you and I forgive you. Welcome to Heaven”. Neither of these ideas are remotely Biblical and they are both based on a misunderstanding of God and His plan of salvation.
Why can’t everyone just go to Heaven?
So what is the issue? Why can’t everyone (except maybe the very worst) just go to Heaven? Romans 3:23 gives us the first part of the answer, “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God“. None of us are without sin, all of us have done numerous things that we know are wrong, and so no matter now good we think we are in comparison to other people, that sin is always going to be there. You can be successful here (or not), but at some point, this life is going to be over and you will have to stand before God – whether you believe in Him right now, or not.
The devil has been diligent to keep your attention focused on your success (or lack of success).
It is then that the second part of the answer as to why your final destination is hell and not Heaven will become apparent. The devil has been diligent to keep your attention focused on your success (or lack of success). He has kept reminding you of all the pressures you face and all the cares that you are carrying. But there is something else that you are carrying around with you, something which one day will come into effect. You see Romans 6:23 says that the wages of sin are death. You will not be able to deny your sin, neither will you be able to protest that your sentence is unjust.
None of it can remove the stain of sin on your life.
The unpleasant truth, is that no matter how well you have done in this life, no matter how good you may have been, no matter how many people you may have helped, none of it can remove the stain of sin on your life. At the final throw of the dice, when this life is over and you stand before God, all you will have left, is that card in your hand. God will still love you, but He will have no choice but to ensure that the instructions on that card are carried out. At that point nothing else will matter and there will be no second chances. Hell was not created for you though, Matthew 25:41 says that it was created for the devil and his angels – it is what you could call, a spiritual prison. But as a sinner you are connected to the devil and will spend eternity with him. However, because God loves you so much, He determined to do whatever it took to redeem you from hell, and what it took was the death of His Son on the cross.
Everyone on this planet has already been forgiven.
So understand that people do not go to hell because God is angry with them – that may be the popular belief, but it is NOT what the Bible teaches. God has made a way of escape. Look at 2 Corinthian 5:19 in the Easy to Read Version, “I mean that God was in Christ, making peace between the world and himself. In Christ, God did not hold people guilty for their sins“. Now there’s a revelation – God does not hold people guilty for their sins. Through the sacrifice of Jesus, everyone on this planet has already been forgiven. There is a saying among Christians, “You’ll go to hell for lying, the same as you will for stealing“. But that is simply not true, the truth is that everyone has already been forgiven of all their sins. The only reason that someone will go to hell, is if they choose to reject God’s free offer of salvation and do not receive that forgiveness.
God made you with a free will and He will respect whatever choice you make.
God made you with a free will and He will respect whatever choice you make. If you choose not to receive God’s ‘GET OUT OF HELL FREE’ card in exchange for your ‘GO DIRECTLY TO HELL’ card, then God will back your decision. Of course God does not want you to make such a choice. Because this is a choice, it is not down to chance. Accepting God’s free offer is extremely simple – Romans 10:9 in the English Standard Version says, “If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.“. Then instead of the first half of Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death“, you will receive the second half: “But the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord“.
If someone decides to reject Jesus their whole lives, they cannot blame God.
You may not understand exactly why Jesus needed to die for you, you may not understand why hell is the only alternative to heaven, but understand that He did die and that He went to hell in your place (Not sure about that? See my post, ‘Did Jesus Go To Hell?‘). Jesus said in Matthew 12:40, “For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth“. Do you really think that God would have sent Jesus to suffer and die if there had been another way? Do you really think that Jesus would have willingly come if there had been another way? Jesus came to this planet to die on the cross, because it was the only way for you to be saved. So to answer the question posed in the title of this post, ‘Why Would A Loving God Send Someone To Hell?’: God is Love and He has done everything in His power to redeem everyone from hell. But if someone decides to reject Jesus their whole lives, to reject God’s offer of salvation, to reject His ‘GET OUT OF HELL FREE’ card, they cannot blame God for where they end up – it is completely their choice. Oh, and standing in front of God and saying that it’s not fair because you didn’t know God was real, or you didn’t know which religion to follow is not going to get you a reprieve.
If you have any further questions or thoughts, please feel free to leave a comment.
If you have never received Jesus as your Lord & Saviour, if you have gone away from God, or if you have any doubts regarding your salvation. I encourage you to click on the link below. Clicking on the link will not secure your salvation, but praying the prayer you find, from your heart, will.
For the salvation prayer, please click here.