Today I had a stimulating conversation about hell.
What brought it up was that Rick Muchow, from the Saddleback Church, who we drove to the airport, was talking about an old Billy Graham teaching he had watched the night before. Within the talk Dr. Graham said that he felt as if hell was completely dark, so when you hear people say "oh well, I'll be there with my friends" they are very wrong.
And, that when God speaks of an "all consuming fire" He is probably not talking about a physical fire, but instead a continuous, never ending, always haunting longing for God. The lost will for eternity burn with the longing to know the God that they now believe exists. They refused to believe in the Lord God while alive, but now are separated forever! I cannot think of anything worse!
Can you imagine the never ending regret? Every second of every day for eternity being consumed by that longing - just like an all consuming fire...
When we arrived home a read an article from John Piper who was also writing about hell and suffering www.desiringgod.org
No mistake that the Lord was trying to teach me something or at least get my attention.
All consuming fire...I have never thought of hell in this way before...