Seven Lessons Learned Too Late

Luke 16:19-31

Don Fortner


Here is the story of THE RICH MAN AND LAZARUS. Lazarus died, and was carried up to heaven. Chosen, redeemed and born of God, he entered into glory. But "the rich man also died!" What became of him? "In hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments!" Our Lord allows us to look beyond the grave. He allows us to look into hell itself. He shows us the pains, feelings and desires of a damned man, one who is forever shut up in hell. Here are seven things that old Dives learned. But he learned them too late. He learned them in hell! I pray that you will not learn them too late.

l.  DEATH DOES NOT END ALL. "If a man die, shall he live again?" Indeed, we shall. We all have an immortal soul that will live on forever, after our bodies are in the grave. Will you spend eternity in the bliss and glory of heaven or in the torments of the damned in hell?

2.  THERE IS A REAL PLACE CALLED "HELL". Hell is as real as Danville, Kentucky. The same Inspired Book that tells us about heaven and the eternal bliss of the redeemed tells us about hell and the eternal misery of the damned. I do not know where it is, and I cannot imagine what it is, but hell is a real place. The rich man found out too late that hell is not a myth.

3.  A HOLY GOD MUST AND WILL PUNISH SIN. God is so inflexibly just and holy that when he found sin upon his own dear Son he poured out his infinite wrath upon him. And he who punished his Son for sin will certainly punish you for sin, if your sin is not removed by his Son.

4.  HELL IS A PLACE OF ENDLESS TORMENT. Dives cried, "I am tormented in this flame!" Hell is a place of lust and desire unfulfilled, a place of mental, moral and physical agony.

5.  CHRIST IS THE ONLY WAY OF SALVATION - The rich man's riches, religion and works were of no value to him in hell. Missing Christ, he lost all!

6.  EXCEPT A MAN REPENT HE WILL SURELY PERISH. In hell this man realized that without repentance there is no salvation (v. 30).

7.  NO ONE CAN EVER BE SAVED WITHOUT HEARING AND BELIEVING THE GOSPEL (vv. 28-31). Be wise now, and believe the gospel. Trust Christ, lest you also perish forever under the wrath of God.