Is There A Hell?

Below are notes to a sermon preached Sunday morning, Feb. 27, 2000, at Gospel Light Baptist Church, Albany, Georgia.


By Michael D. O’Neal              Pastor, Gospel Light Baptist Church              Albany, Georgia

Scripture Reading: Luke 16:19-31

Text: Luke 16:23

Luke 16:23 And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.

Introduction: If I were to just preach on the subject of my own liking, I would preach on heaven rather than on hell this morning. Heaven is so wonderful, while hell is so terrible. Heaven is so sweet, but heaven is so sorrowful. Heaven is so joyful, but hell is so sad.

As surely as there is a heaven, there is a hell. As surely as there are saints of God in heaven, even as we speak, there are also lost people suffering in the torments of hell.

I don’t really know how to preach about hell. I am thinking as I preach of acquaintances, friends, and relatives who are headed for hell. I am thinking of people I buried, whose souls are doubtless in anguish in hell fire even while we gather here in this pleasant atmosphere at church.

Luke 16 is not a parable. It is about certain individuals. They lived and died. The man named Lazarus went to paradise after he was buried. The rich man died, was buried, and lifted up his eyes in the flames of hell.

I want you to consider this question: IS THERE A HELL?

I will be asking and answering this question during the message. I heard about a young preacher whose ministry was rescued from deadness by being asked by another preacher, “Is There a Hell?” I am interested in God using this message today to rescue people. First, may God use it to rescue lost people from the flames of hell. Second, may God use the message to rescue saved people from their apathy, worldliness, and sinful neglect of soul-winning, that is, of telling people how to escape that awful place called hell.

Do you really believe there is a hell? If we REALLY believed there was a hell, our tract rack would be emptied after the service. If we REALLY believed there is a hell, every one of you here for Sunday morning service would return for our Thursday night soul-winning visitation. If we really believed there is a hell, we would be having people saved every DAY, not just every Sunday. If we really believed there is a hell, we would serve God faithfully. If we really believed there is a hell, we would not get our feelings hurt so easily when we don’t get treated exactly like we wish. We would die to self, carry our cross, and win people to Jesus Christ.




Romans 3:4a God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar …

A. It was a solemn theme of the Old Testament

  • Moses believed in it – Deut. 32:22
  • David believed in it – 2 Sam. 22:6
  • Job believed in it – Job 26:6
  • Solomon believed in it – Prov. 9:18
  • Isaiah believed in it – Isa. 5:14
  • Jonah believed in it – Jon. 2:2

B. It is still a terror in the New Testament

  • James believed in it – Jas. 3:6
  • Peter believed in it – 2 Pet. 2:4
  • John believed in it – Rev. 20:13
  • The Lord Jesus Christ believed in it – He spoke of it in 16 places in the New Testament!

The Bible declares plainly there is a hell!

JFW’s (Jehovah’s False Witnesses) deny the truth now, but they believe it when they die, because they go to hell!

Liberals deny the truth now, but they believe it when they die, because they go to hell!




I don’t recommend that you buy books by the cults, but I have picked up some of them at yard sales and thrift stores so that, as a pastor, I could point out their errors and expose them. One of them is by the JFW’s called, “Is This Life All There Is?” On pages 91, 96, and 97 they deny a burning hell and call the teaching a pagan tradition. I have a book by the Seventh Day Adventists called “The Great Controversy.” On pages 535 and 536, it denies a burning hell where people burn forever and ever.

I have a book by an Episcopalian called “Faith and Practice.” In the forward and on pages 233, 248, and 249, the book denies that there is eternal torment in a burning hell.

Eternal torment in hell is not a pagan tradition! The Lord Jesus Christ said that people burn in hell! Are you going to call HIM a pagan? That is BLASPHEMY!

The Bible is true no matter what ANYONE says. If the Baptists deny the truth of hell, and I am a Baptist, there is STILL a hell!

Luke 16:23 And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.

Luke 16:24 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 16:25 But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented.

Luke 16:28 For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment.

A. There is the torment of the scorching flame

B. There is the torment of the sad memories – V. 25

C. There is the torment of the sounds – V. 24 – “he cried and said”

D. There is the torment of the sights – V. 23

E. There is the torment of the sinners to come – V. 28

F. There is the torment of the sentence – V. 26

Hell fire is FOREVER!
You cannot leave, and no one can come to relieve you of your torment!




Psalms 86:12-13 I will praise thee, O Lord my God, with all my heart: and I will glorify thy name for evermore. 13 For great is thy mercy toward me: and thou hast delivered my soul from the lowest hell.

A. Because we are thankful, we sing and shout

B. Because we are thankful, we serve the Savior

C. Because we are thankful, we seek sinners

which brings me to my final point:




Matthew 3:7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?

We are tools God will use to keep people out of hell IF …

A. We walk circumspectly

B. We warn compassionately

C. We work continually

D. We witness clearly

E. We win consistently

Is there a hell? Yes, there is!
Join me in our efforts to keep people from going to hell!

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