There is a great gulf between heaven and hell. Like a deep chasm, or the Victoria Falls, God has fixed it there deliberately and it cannot be crossed. In Luke 16 Jesus describes the despair of the rich man in hell. This ‘rich’ man realises that his pitiful state, consigned to hell and suffering, is permanent! There is no escape and no relief. He begs Abraham to warn his brothers of what is to come so that they can avoid it. But communication with the living is also eternally impossible. An unassailable divide has been fixed between heaven and hell and between hell and earth.
The Great Gulf: A Great Warning
What should we do with this parable? Conrad Mbewe calls us to remember this great gulf. To look at it and use it to inspire us to take action today. If a cobra was thrown into the room, you would jump out the high window! Use that energy to save yourself now from eternal damnation – a fate even worse!
But why do we not take action? Perhaps it is Pride. But why should you end up in God’s maximum security prison? Is it really just because you don’t want people realise that you went to a Christian camp and were convicted by the Spirit of God? Why should pride keep you away from salvation, from Christ, from heaven?
Come as You Are
The rich man was not proud in hell. Rather, he asked for Lazarus to simply dip a tip of his finger in water to cool his tongue. That is no longer pride – it is humiliation of the worst kind! Conrad Mbewe pleads with you to come as you are and accept forgiveness and eternal life in Christ today. Before it is too late and the great gulf is between you and those who would have you come to faith.
Text: Luke 16: 19-31
Preached: 20 April 2019
Location: Lusaka Baptist Church, Lusaka, Zambia