How long is a long time? Eternity is a long, long time compared to how short our time is on this earth. Whenever we read about the amazing blessings of eternal life with our Heavenly Father, we don’t question that “eternal” means forever. But did you realize that this same word is used to describe the length of time that someone will spend in hell?
When we read the words “eternal” or “everlasting” in the New Testament, these words are most often translated from the Greek words “Aion, aionios, and aidios”.
Those who go to hell and live eternally with Satan and his demons will be there as long as those who spend eternity with Heavenly Father—forever!
We read about this in this weeks Gospel Doctrine Lesson:
“We have the freedom to obey or disobey God’s commandments but not to choose the consequences of our actions. What did Mormon say will be the fate of those who disobey? (See Helaman 12:25–26.)” (Book of Mormon: Gospel Doctrine Lesson 34: How Could You Have Forgotten Your God? pp 153-154):
“And I would that all men might be saved. But we read that in the great and last day there are some who shall be cast out, yea, who shall be cast off from the presence of the Lord; Yea, who shall be consigned to a state of endless misery, fulfilling the words which say: They that have done good shall have everlasting life; and they that have done evil shall have everlasting damnation. And thus it is. Amen. (Helaman 12:25–26.)
This Book of Mormon passage uses the same word: “everlasting” for both life and damnation. But LDS prophets testify that damnation isn’t really everlasting:
“The theology of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ is comprehensive, universal, merciful, and true. Following the necessary experience of mortal life, all sons and daughters of God will ultimately be resurrected and go to a kingdom of glory more wonderful than any mortal can comprehend. With only a few exceptions, even the very wicked will ultimately go to a marvelous—though lesser—kingdom of glory.” (Dallin H. Oaks, Fundamental to Our Faith, Ensign Jan 2011) [LDS believe all people are sons & daughters of God]
I find the LDS belief that that “even the very wicked will ultimately go to a marvelous—though lesser—kingdom of glory” appalling. The reason is because this teaching is supposed to be “the restored gospel of Jesus Christ.” Jesus never once taught nor supported this horrendously false teaching. In fact, He declared the exact opposite! Every time Jesus spoke of what happens on the Final Day of Judgment, He clearly testified of a “two-part division of the righteous and the wicked.” And, of only one everlasting domain for each.
I have spent numerous hours searching thorough the Bible so I could learn what God wanted me to know about Heaven and Hell. Doing so has reinforced my desire to share God’s truth with you. I can’t bear the thought that so many deceived people will spend “eternity” in Hell.
Eternity is a long, long time and that is one of the reasons I have this blog. You have been misled into believing that there is no way you or your loved ones could possibly spend an eternity in Hell. If you don’t believe me, then trust the words of the Apostle John. He described the lake of fire as a place where those who go “shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever” (Revelation 20:10-15).
The Apostles Paul and Jude, along with Jesus, claimed that Hell will be a place of everlasting destruction, fire, punishment and chains (2 Thessalonians 1:8, Jude 7, Matthew 18:8, 25:41). Jude testified that those from Sodom and Gomorrh would suffer the vengeance of eternal fire. Jesus quoted the prophet Isaiah when he said that it is a place where “their worm dieth not and the fire is not quenched” (Mark 9:43-48).
Jesus revealed His Words at the Final Judgement:
“Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: For I was an hungred… Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me. And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.” (Matthew 25:41-46)
According to God’s Word—sin, any sin, is the reason someone will be cast into Hell. But why will someone gain eternal life? Human logic tells us that since disobedience disqualifies us, obedience must be the way to qualify. Mormon prophets tell us that if we can just be obedient enough–“that we are saved, after all we can do.” (2 Nephi 25:23c)
But God has told us differently. Jesus himself testified that our best effort is not good enough (Matthew 5:48). No one can meet God’s requirements to gain eternal life by their own obedience. Because of this truth, God lovingly provided a way—a different plan. He sent His son Jesus to be obedient and fulfill His law for us. Jesus came to be our substitute for the perfection required to dwell in God’s presence. His shed blood washes away all your sins. The truth — God’s truth, is that only through faith in His Son can you be declared righteous. The only way to gain eternal life is through faith in the fact that Jesus has already gained it for you!!
The next time you think time is moving slowly, think about how long eternity will be. Re-read the story Jesus told us in Luke chapter sixteen about the rich man who was stuck in hell for eternity:
“And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame. (Luke 16:23-24)
“Forever” is a long, long time to spend in an everlasting fire, in the same domain as Satan.
But praise the Lord you don’t have to be afraid! Jesus came to save you from this fate and He has cleansed you from all sin. Heavenly Father desires to spend eternity with you. It is His will that you believe and receive everlasting life: “And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.” (John 6:40)
It is through faith and faith alone that Eternal life is guaranteed. But don’t believe me, believe the words of your Savior who earned it for you:
“And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.” (John 3:14-18)