How, in the Hell?
By Warren Hodge
Every unbeliever that dies an unbeliever will find themselves in a literal hell. Every person whether we are a believer or unbeliever has experienced or will experience their own figurative hell – situations and/or conditions we all go through or have gone through that were so painstaking, tumultuous and discomforting that we likened them to hell.
The real question is: “How, in the hell, do we praise and worship God?” Is there some equation or formula that enables one believer to retain the praises of God while another, going through the same thing, loses their praise?
In Scripture we find the strength and inspiration to draw from the examples of fellow saints in Christ who have gone through a figurative hell and yet shined in the midst of it - holding on to their praise. David had his ordeal with Saul and says, “I will bless the Lord at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth” (Psalm 34:1). David did nothing and said nothing that deserved him the pursuit for his life. He was just being who God made him to be, a shepherd boy ordained to be king of Israel.
It can seem that the flames of our hell are intensified when we didn’t contribute to the cause of the fire. Not that they are, but it seems to be because when innocence is attacked, the attack bears a stronger offense. And what about the hell we catch for standing up for what is right? Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego stood for God and didn’t bow to King Nebuchadnezzar’s gold statue and were thrown into a fiery furnace. Their response: “If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God whom we serve is able to save us. He will rescue us from your power, Your Majesty. But even if he doesn’t, we want to make it clear to you, Your Majesty, that we will never serve your gods or worship the gold statue you have set up” (Daniel 3:17-18, NLT). We also draw strength and inspiration from our fellow brothers/sisters that have impacted our present era such as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. who stood up for civil rights and didn’t bow to the immoral and uncivilized treatment of white supremacists. He and others like him had a hell to go through for standing for what was right.
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