WHEN HELL WAS MESSED UP
Preacher: Felix Ngunjiri
Reading: “We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed” (2 Corinthians 4:8-9).
We are Persecuted Yet Not Destroyed
There is so much trouble in this world. Jesus told His disciples that “… brother shall deliver up brother to death, and the father the child: and the children shall rise up against their parents, and cause them to be put to death” (Matthew 10:21). God in His Glory and eternal love had to intervene and change the destiny of man so that man does not live under a curse but that man is restored back to God. Jesus had to be sent by God here on earth to deliver us from this present evil world. “Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father: to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen” (Galatians 1:3). God’s plan of redemption of mankind started being manifested here on earth on the day when Satan thought that he had destroyed the Son of God by killing him on the cross. Satan made sure that Jesus Christ died a shameful death, scorned and scourged. Satan then went down to hell to celebrate that he had ‘licked’ Jesus and avenged the day he was chased out of heaven after losing the fight in heaven. Celebrations in Hell Demons started celebrating in hell after ‘killing’ Jesus on the cross and started worshipping the devil as images of flashbacks of Satan in his glory in heaven passed through the minds of the devil and his evil angels with fond memories. Each and every demon started imagining that they were back in heaven with Satan on the throne. When Satan was in heaven before the days of the Garden of Eden, he used to be bedecked with every precious stone as his covering. Satan was the anointed cherub upon the holy mountain of God. Satan was perfect in all ways till iniquity was found in him. “Thou hast been in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone was thy covering, the sardius, topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper, the sapphire, the emerald, and the carbuncle, and gold: the workmanship of thy tabrets and of thy pipes was prepared in thee in the day that thou wast created. Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God; thou hast walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire. Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee” (Ezekiel 28:15). God told the “Son of man (Jesus Christ), to say unto the prince of Tyrus, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Because thine heart is lifted up, and thou hast said, I am a God, I sit in the seat of God, in the midst of the seas; yet thou art a man, and not God, though thou set thine heart as the heart of God” (Ezekiel 28:1-2). “Behold, therefore I will bring strangers upon thee, the terrible of the nations: and they shall draw their swords against the beauty of thy wisdom, and they shall defile thy brightness. They shall bring thee down to the pit, and thou shalt die the deaths of them that are slain in the midst of the seas” (Ezekiel 28:7-8). “How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning? How art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! “For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High. Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit” (Isaiah 14:12-15). Satan refused to imagine the reality that he had been chased out of heaven under the instigations of Jesus. “And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, and prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceives the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night” (Revelation 12:7-10). Satan had vowed to revenge against Jesus one day. And here he was celebrating how he had decidedly ‘killed’ Jesus on the cross. The day of celebrations had finally come and the celebrations went on and on as programmed.
Agony at Gethsemane Christ’s road to victory over the devil had started at the garden of Gethsemane even before He had been arrested. When the time came for Jesus Christ to be betrayed into the hands of sinners, He went to pray in the garden of Gethsemane. He was not afraid of arrest because He knew that he had power to ask for military help from Almighty God in heaven but decided otherwise because the scriptures had to be fulfilled. When Simon Peter tried to obstruct the chief priests and elders from arresting Jesus by assaulting a servant of one of the high priests, Jesus said to him, “Put back again your sword into its place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword. Don’t you think that I can now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels? But how then shall the scriptures be fulfilled, that thus it must be?” (Matthew 26:52-54). Jesus even knew the person who would betray Him. He was not terrified of death because His mission here on earth was to conquer the devil, death and hell. Jesus Christ was prepared to endure the cross for our own sake so that He could accomplish His mission here on earth. He wanted to “redeem us from the curse of the law, having been made a curse for us: for it is written, cursed is every one that hangs on a tree: that the blessing of Abraham might come upon the nations through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith” (Galatians 3:13-14). He wanted to take away the curse of the law slapped on all humanity due to our sinful nature and in exchange He could give us the blessing of Abraham that was due to Him as a result of His obedience to the Father.
What Jesus Hated Most
What Jesus was agonizing at the Garden of Gethsemane was to imagine that He was to take all our sins. The sinless was to be made sin for us. “For God has made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Corinthians 5:21). He was to drink all the sins of the world. The sins of idolatry, witchcraft, all forms of uncleanness, robbery and violence, adultery and fornication, hatred, anger, rebellion, strife, lies, seditions, heresies, envy, murders and all forms of wickedness and perversion. “And he came out, and went, as he was wont, to the Mount of Olives; and his disciples also followed him. And when he was at the place, he said to them, pray that you enter not into temptation. And he was withdrawn from them about a stone’s cast, and knelt down, and prayed, saying, Father, if you be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but yours be done. And there appeared an angel unto him from heaven, strengthening him. And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground. And when he rose up from prayer, and was come to his disciples, he found them sleeping for sorrow, and said unto them, why do you sleep? Rise and pray, lest you enter into temptation”(Luke 22:39-46).
And the Sins Got Mixed Up
Jesus could not imagine taking all our sins on His body. That would have meant spiritual death and the subsequent separation from His Father who is in heaven. He had never been isolated or separated from God since eternity. Jesus pleaded with God to remove that cup that contained all our sins. When He looked down at that mixture of sins, He hated the cup with all of His heart. “And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but your will” (Matthew 26:39). Jesus had to be made sin on our behalf on the cross although he knew no sin. All the sins of the world were nailed onto Him on the cross at Calvary. But because He had to ascend back to heaven where He came from, there was no way he could go to heaven with all the sins of mankind. He had to take them to the owner of sins. He had to dump all our sins in hell where they belonged, where they had been hatched. He had to take them to the devil, the father of lies. Jesus told doubters that “You are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father you will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it” (John 8:44). When all our sins got nailed on Jesus, they got mixed up into one major sin called HATRED. You could not tell one sin from the other. The bottom line in all sins committed here on earth is hatred. All sins can either be categorized as those that deal with hatred for God or those that have to do with hatred for man. That is Why Jesus clarified that the greatest commandment is to LOVE which is the opposite of HATE. “And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with thy entire mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these”(Mark 12:30-31). All types of sins are driven by deep hatred of God, man or self. You cannot steal from a person you love. You cannot kill a person you love. When some people hate God, they start worshipping other things: money, women and beer. Or they start worshipping power, property and personal gods. That imagination that all sins of hatred were to be heaped on Jesus was what Jesus hated most. God hates hatred because He is love. “Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loves is born of God, and knows God. He that loves not knows not God; for God is love” (1 John 4:7-8). Having lost the fight against the imminent cup, Jesus braced Himself to die on the cross at Calvary. He had earlier prepared His disciples for His impending death. “From that time forth began Jesus to show unto His disciples, how that He must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day” (Matthew 16:21).
Hell Left in Shambles
After Jesus died on the cross, He went down into hell. The day that Jesus descended into hell was a day Satan will never forget. The devil had earlier confirmed that Jesus had indeed died although gossip was rife in hell that He was likely to resurrect according to the scriptures. The scared demons were speaking in hushed tones of the well oiled rumours that were being peddled all over hell that the main reason for Jesus going down to hell was to dump all sins of the world on them. And that He would then rise from the dead after messing up hell. They started fearing that He would actually rise from the dead and interrupt their celebrations over His death. You can imagine what drama took place in hell after Jesus actually rose from the dead. The devil and his demons had just left Jesus hanging on the cross, ‘dead’. Suddenly, pandemonium broke loose in hell and Satan and all his demons were blinded by a strong shining light emitted by Jesus Christ. “… His face was as the sun shining in its full strength” (Revelation 1:16). No light had ever lit hell before. The devil had never seen such light from the time he was chased from heaven. Satan and his evil angels (demons) tried running this way and that way, here and there and all fell prostrate before Jesus Christ, the one they had killed, and behold He had come down to hell to destroy them. Jesus stopped their cries with a chilling “Shut up” and without wasting even a single second snatched from Satan the keys of hell and death. “I am he that lives, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death” (Revelation 1:18). He woke the dead and preached to them about salvation. After Jesus Christ preached to the souls in hell, He could not leave them there if they got saved. He had to resurrect with them and take them to heaven with him. “Verily, verily, I say unto you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live” (John 5:25). “For Christ also has once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit: By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison” (1 Peter 3:18-19). “For this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit” (1 Peter 4:6). After defeating the devil in his backyard, Christ defeated death and rose from the dead. “And the Prince of life, whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses” (Acts 3:15). “Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dies no more; death has no more dominion over him” (Romans 6:9). “It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us” (Romans 8:34) After the resurrection of Christ, His soul was not left in hell (Acts 2:31).
Death and Hell Conquered
And behold Jesus Christ is seated at the right hand of God in heaven, having conquered the devil, hell and death for us. And John saw “an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years, And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season” (Revelation 20:1-3). “And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night forever and ever” (Revelation 20:10). “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. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire” (Revelation 20:13-14). That demonstrates the powerlessness of the devil. He is like a lion but not a lion.
“Be sober and alert. Your enemy the devil, like a roaring lion, is on the prowl looking for someone to devour” (1Pet 5:8 [NET2]). The next verse says that we should resist him. The bible says that we have the power to resist him if we first submit ourselves unto the Lord and the devil will flee. “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you” (James 4:7 [KJV]).
God Himself has promised to deliver us from the hatred that is in this world. “For though a righteous man falls seven times, he will get up, but the wicked will stumble into ruin.” (Proverbs 24:16) “Though he falls, he will not be overwhelmed, for the LORD is holding his hand.” (Psalm 37:24) Our enemies should never celebrate when we fall down because greater is He in us than he who is in the world. “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.” (1John 4:4 [KJV]) God has promised us that He shall never leave us nor forsake us. He said that “I will never leave you nor forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5, 6)
Jesus Christ brought the good news of the Kingdom of God to humanity and promised us that He shall be with us always, even to the end of the world. “Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them. And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted. And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” (Matt 28:16-20 [KJV])
What a refreshing promise to hear from the Lord that He shall be with us always, punctuating the promise with an Amen for He is the Amen. He said that “I am He that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death” (Rev 1:18 [KJV]). “And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;” (Rev 3:14 [KJV]) Jesus Christ is revealing to us all that all power in heaven and on earth has been given to Him for He is the power of God. “Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God” (1Cor 1:24 [KJV]). Christ was given the power to create the heaven and the earth has given His power to whoever believes in Him so that we can preach the gospel and destroy all the works of the devil by healing the sick. He commissioned His disciples to “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover” (Mark 16:15-18 [KJV]).
The same power that Jesus had has now been given to whoever believes in Him. Christ is now in believers. The mystery that has been hidden since the world began is now revealed: that God has poured Himself, smeared Himself, rubbed Himself to whoever believes in Him and in His Son Jesus Christ to crown the promise of dominion that He gave Adam so that the dominion and power and authority is now upon the believers. That is why He said that
“Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints: To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory: Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus:” (Col 1:26-28 [KJV])
The mystery can be discovered when you read the portion of the above text that says Christ in you the hope of glory. The word Christ is a Greek word Christos that is a translation of the Hebrew word Messiah. Translated into English, it means anointed or the Anointed One. It also refers to His anointing. If you translate that portion of scripture, it reads the Anointed One in you and the anointing in you. If we go ahead and define the word anoint, it means rub into, smear on and pour into. Biblically, the anointing is God’s presence. His essence. It is the thing that makes God be God. The anointing is God on flesh enabling flesh to do those things that are impossible for flesh to do. This then means that the creator of heaven and earth has rubbed, smeared and poured Himself into your flesh to enable whoever believes in Him to do extraordinary works and miracles that ordinary folks cannot do. Jesus told His disciples to “Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works’ sake. Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works (miracles) that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father. And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it” (John 14:11-14 [KJV]). We have been called to go out and preach the gospel of the Kingdom of heaven and given power over the devil. “And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give” (Matt 10:7-8 [KJV]). Do not go out to preach the gospel without having been filled or anointed with the Holy Spirit because demons can attack you because you are destroying their kingdom here on earth of stealing, killing and destroying man by tempting him to sin because he knows that sin means death. God warned Adam that sin means death. “But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die” (Gen 2:17 [KJV]).“He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil” (1John 3:8 [KJV]).
Go therefore into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believes and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. Let us go out into the world to preach the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ and win souls for Him as we wait for the time the devil and hell will be messed up and destroyed (Rev 20:1-3,14). Halleluia. Amen.