The Judgment of the Living Dead, Part 5


TEXT: Revelation 20:11-15

11 And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.

12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and Hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.

14 And death and Hell were cast into the Lake of Fire. This is the second death.

15 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the Lake of Fire.

The Judgment of the Living Dead (Part 5)

Now that we have discussed the procedure of the Great White Throne Judgment at length, we are going to take a closer look at the end result of this judgment — the internment of vast multitudes, all those who died without Christ, in the Lake of Fire. Many people, including Christians, stumble at this doctrine. Some pastors shirk from preaching on it from the pulpit. However, there is no ambiguity or conflict in the Bible regarding the Lake of Fire or the eternal punishment of the unsaved.

The term “Lake of Fire” only occurs in Revelation 19 and 20. First, John tells us that the Antichrist and the False Prophet are put there, then Satan himself joins them, then Death and Hell are tossed in, and finally all people who remained sinners to the end are sent there. This portrayal of the Lake of Fire in the last few chapters of the book of Revelation emphasizes the stark foreignness of this judgment. It is a judgment of the last days — one that takes place at the end of time as the loose ends of history are being tied up and eternity prepares to take its place.

Yet, throughout Scripture, we see the concept of an eternal place of punishment. Old Testament Jews believed in a place called Sheol, where all people went after they died. This place was divided into two compartments — one for the righteous and one for the unrighteous. The place of the righteous was called Abraham’s Bosom or Paradise; the place of the unrighteous was a place of torment and suffering. The New Testament is more direct on the teaching of Hell. What may come as a surprise to some is that we know more about the place of eternal punishment from Jesus’ words than from any other New Testament writer. In Mark 9, He referred to Hell as a place where the “fire never shall be quenched.”

Now, the Lake of Fire is another place altogether. Some have speculated that Hell is in the center of the earth; and that is a plausible idea. However, the Lake of Fire does not exist within the bounds of human discovery. Its primary position comes into play only after the current heaven and earth have passed away. But it is no less real. Regarding the nature of the Lake of Fire, C.T. Schwarze, a former professor at New York University and a member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, writes: “The word ‘lake’ must connote a body of matter having liquid form. Therefore, if Scripture is truth, this eternal fire must be in liquid form.” He goes on to point out that “white dwarf stars out in the vast reaches of the universe can properly be described as lakes of fire, since their temperature reaches some 30 million degrees Fahrenheit and they are liquid in form, being stars of such tremendous gravitational force that the hot gases are compressed down to superheated liquids.” It could very well be true that the Lake of Fire exists now as some distant celestial body, and that it will be the destination of the living dead.


If you are with us today, and you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior, allow me to share with you how you can trust Him for salvation so that you can be ready for His return.

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to Hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in Hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “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.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.

If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! Congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is receiving Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door.” Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”

God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.

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