The Nevertheless of Obedience

At Your Word I Will

For times when following Christ seems too hard,

“Simon answered and said to Him, ‘Master, we have toiled all night and caught nothing; nevertheless at Your word I will let down the net.’” (Luke 5:5 NKJV)

Exhausted from an unproductive night of fishing, Jesus’ command to “let down your nets” must have seemed a mockery for the bone-weary fishermen. No doubt, Peter, the expert fisherman, thought Jesus’ directive made no sense and was a waste of time; because fish were supposed to be caught at night, not during the day light hours. “Nevertheless,” Peter obeyed and was rewarded with bulging nets of blessings. Have you struggled with a lack of faithful obedience? You are not the first (not the last) to grapple with the decision to follow Christ’s commands; especially, one that flies in the face of human instinct. So today, incur God’s blessing by bridging the chasm between doubt and obedience with “nevertheless.”

For the whole story read Luke 5:1-11

Other post in this series, “The Nevertheless of…”

God’s Firm FoundationSharing The Good News, New Heavens And A New Earth and Of Christ’s Sacrifice.

Can Christians Pray To Jesus?

A reader recently asked:

“Dear Clay,

A few Sunday’s ago, the congregation where I attend sang the song, I Must Tell Jesus[i]. I have to admit, I was a little uncomfortable singing that song because it sounds like we were singing that we need to pray to Jesus and tell Him all our troubles. Frankly, I don’t know if Christians can pray to Jesus or not. So would you be so kind as to help me? Can Christians pray to Jesus? Thank you in advance.

In Christian Love,


surrenderThank you very much for the question Patty. I’ll be happy to give you an answer, and I hope that it will be faithful to the teachings found in God’s word[iii].

The general rule and example in the life of our Lord Jesus is that Christians pray to the Father. Indeed, the model prayer of Matthew 6:9-13 begins, “Pray then like this: ‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name…’” Jesus also taught the apostles that, “whatever you ask the Father in my name, He may give it to you” (John 15:16). Furthermore, Jesus, by example addressed His prayers to the, “Father…” (cf. Matthew 11:25; Luke 10:21; John 11:41). Since Jesus’ teaching and example is directed toward praying to the Father, I understand why so many believe that only the Father can be addressed in prayer. Nevertheless, there is strong evidence for the ESV and the NASB translation of John 14:13-14, “Whatever you ask in My name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask Me anything in my name, I will do it.” The phrase, “if you ask Me” seems to give warrant for praying directly to Jesus (see notes on 1 John 5:13-15 below). However, let’s explore some other principles and passages before we draw our final conclusion.

One principle to keep in mind is that as Christians, we worship deity, not just the Father. In Revelation 19:10; 22:8-9, John bowed down to worship an angel. The angel told him not to do that. The reason, he was merely a servant just like us. Instead, John was told to worship God. However, in Hebrews 1:6, all the angels are commanded to worship Jesus. Additionally, in such passages as Matthew 14:33; 28:9, 17; Luke 24:52; John 9:38; people worshiped Jesus without rebuke.

If we can worship Jesus because He is not merely a servant but is God, then we can pray and sing praises to Jesus as well. Remember, in Jesus “the whole fullness of deity dwells” (Colossians 2:9) and the exact “imprint” of God (cf. Hebrews 1:3). Jesus is just as much God as the Father is. Therefore, barring some prohibition, we are able to pray to Jesus as well as to the Father since both are God. In fact, there are examples in Acts and the epistles of prayers being offered to Jesus.

Acts 1:23-26 – Before the remaining 11 apostles, lead by Peter, began to select Judas’ replacement they prayed saying, “You, Lord…” I would submit to you this prayer for divine intervention was addressed to Jesus since in two previous verses the apostles refer to Jesus as “Lord” (vv. 6, 21) Also, it was Jesus who selected the first apostles (cf. Luke 6:12-18) as well as Paul (cf. Acts 9:1-19; 1 Timothy 1:12-17). From the very beginning of the apostles prayed to Jesus.

Acts 7:59-60 – As Stephen is being stoned he cried out in prayer, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit” and begged Jesus, “Lord do not hold this sin against them.” At the point of death, Stephen prayed to Jesus. As a side note, these two prayers are similar to Jesus’ prayers to the Father from the cross (cf. Luke 23:34, 46).

2 Corinthians 12:7-10 – On three occasions Paul pleaded with the Lord for his thorn in the flesh to leave him. Three times the Lord said to him, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Who is this “Lord” that Paul prayed too? In the follow verses he identified Him as, “Christ” (vv. 9, 10; cf. 1 Corinthians 8:6). Thus, Paul prayed to Jesus.

1 Thessalonians 3:11-13 – In one of Paul’s prayers for the Thessalonians he prayed to, “Our God and Father… and our Lord Jesus” (v. 11). Additionally, Paul petitioned “the Lord [Jesus]” to make the Thessalonians “increase and abound in love for one another and for all” (v. 12) and that He (that is the Lord Jesus) “may establish [their] hearts blameless in holiness before our God and Father” (v. 13).

2 Thessalonians 2:16-17; 3:5, 16 – As Paul is bringing his second epistle to the Thessalonians to a close, he prayerfully ask the “Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and God our Father” to “comfort” the hearts of the Thessalonians and “establish them in every good work and word” (2:16-17). Furthermore, Paul petitioned the Lord Jesus to “direct [their] hearts to the love of God and to the steadfastness of Christ” (3:5). Concluding, “May the Lord of peace Himself give you peace at all times in every way. The Lord be with you all” (3:16). Throughout 1, 2 Thessalonians Paul petitioned Jesus in benedictory prayer, asking for His blessing upon the believers in Thessalonica.

1 Timothy 1:12 – When Paul recounted his dramatic Damascus Road Experience to Timothy (cf. Acts 9:1-19), he prayerfully thanked “Him who has given me strength, Christ Jesus our Lord.” Paul directed his prayer of thanksgiving to Jesus.

1 John 5:13-15 – As John brings his first epistle to a close he states, “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life.” With wording reminiscent John 14:13-14, the apostle confidently states, “And this is the confidence that we have toward Him, that if we ask anything according to His will He hears us. And if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the request that we have asked of Him.” The “Him” that John is referring to is “the Son of God” or, Jesus. Therefore John is referencing praying to Jesus.

Revelation 22:20 – In the next to the last verse of the New Testament John cries, “Come, Lord Jesus!” and bring your people relief. The prayer of all believers is to be, “Come, Lord Jesus!” (1 Corinthians 16:22).

Well Patty, the weight of scriptural evidence suggests to me that as Christians we are allowed to pray to Jesus. However, I certainly do not wish to encourage you or anyone else to violate their conscience. If you feel you should only address the Father in prayer, then by all means do so. With that said, I would also encourage you not to discourage your brethren, who see the Biblical principle and examples we discussed as authoritative, from praying to Jesus or singing songs to Jesus. One last note, though I didn’t specifically address singing songs, or prayers, directly to Jesus such as I Must Tell Jesus, (other examples would be Abide With Me, or O, To Be Like Thee! among others) I believe that because of the scriptural evidence for praying to Jesus exist, then we can also sing songs directed to Him as well. On a side note, Psalm 4; 55; 61; 64 would be sufficient evidence to show we can sing prayers. I hope that helped.

I always welcome questions, so if you have one you can email it to me at As always my friends, keep sharing the good news.

[i] In case you’re not familiar with the song I Must Tell Jesus you can find the lyrics here.

[ii] I changed the questioner’s name.

[iii] A big thanks to my good friend Edwin Crozier for allowing me to use some of his material to answer this question.

Similarities Between 2 Peter and Jude

When studying 1-2 Peter & Jude, one cannot help but notice the similarities in Peter and Jude’s use and application of biblical history, and how they used the same terms to denounce sin and the false teachers threatening the church. The following comparisons from 2 Peter and Jude (using the ESV) will help you see the similarities. This same chart can also be found in the appendix of my study on 1-2 Peter & Jude:

(2 Peter 1:1) Simeon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who have obtained a faith of equal standing with ours by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ: (Jude 1) Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ and brother of James, To those who are called, beloved in God the Father and kept for Jesus Christ:
(2 Peter 1:2) May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord. (Jude 2) May mercy, peace, and love be multiplied to you.

(2 Peter 1:12) Therefore I intend always to remind you of these qualities, though you know them and are established in the truth that you have

(Jude 5) Now I want to remind you, although you once fully knew it, that Jesus, who saved a people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe.
(2 Peter 2:1-2) But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed. (Jude 4) For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.
(2 Peter 2:4) For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to chains of gloomy darkness to be kept until the judgment; (Jude 6) And the angels who did not stay within their own position of authority, but left their proper dwelling, he has kept in eternal chains under gloomy darkness until the judgment of the great day —
(2 Peter 2:6) if by turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to ashes he condemned them to extinction, making them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly; (Jude 7) just as Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding cities, which likewise indulged in sexual immorality and pursued unnatural desire, serve as an example by undergoing a punishment of eternal fire.
(2 Peter 2:10a) and especially those who indulge in the lust of defiling passion and despise authority. (Jude 8) Yet in like manner these people also, relying on their dreams, defile the flesh, reject authority, and blaspheme the glorious ones.
(2 Peter 2:10b-12) Bold and willful, they do not tremble as they blaspheme the glorious ones, whereas angels, though greater in might and power, do not pronounce a blasphemous judgment against them before the Lord. Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation. (Jude 9-10) But when the archangel Michael, contending with the devil, was disputing about the body of Moses, he did not presume to pronounce a blasphemous judgment, but said, “The Lord rebuke you.” But these people blaspheme all that they do not understand, and they are destroyed by all that they, like unreasoning animals, understand instinctively.

(2 Peter 2:13) suffering wrong as the wage for their wrongdoing. They count it pleasure to revel in the daytime. They are blots and blemishes, reveling in their deceptions, while they feast with you.

(Jude 12a) These are blemishes on your love feasts, as they feast with you without fear, looking after themselves;
(2 Peter 2:15-16) Forsaking the right way, they have gone astray. They have followed the way of Balaam, the son of Beor, who loved gain from wrongdoing, but was rebuked for his own transgression; a speechless donkey spoke with human voice and restrained the prophet’s madness. (Jude 11) Woe to them! For they walked in the way of Cain and abandoned themselves for the sake of gain to Balaam’s error and perished in Korah’s rebellion.
(2 Peter 2:17) These are waterless springs and mists driven by a storm. For them the gloom of utter darkness has been reserved. (Jude 12b-13) waterless clouds, swept along by winds; fruitless trees in late autumn, twice dead, uprooted; wild waves of the sea, casting up the foam of their own shame; wandering stars, for whom the gloom of utter darkness has been reserved forever.
(2 Peter 2:18) For, speaking loud boasts of folly, they entice by sensual passions of the flesh those who are barely escaping from those who live in error. (Jude 16) These are grumblers, malcontents, following their own sinful desires; they are loud-mouthed boasters, showing favoritism to gain advantage.
(2 Peter 3:1-2) This is now the second letter that I am writing to you, beloved. In both of them I am stirring up your sincere mind by way of reminder, that you should remember the predictions of the holy prophets and the commandment of the Lord and Savior through your apostles, (Jude 17) But you must remember, beloved, the predictions of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ.
(2 Peter 3:3) knowing this first of all, that scoffers will come in the last days with scoffing, following their own sinful desires. (Jude 18) They said to you, “In the last time there will be scoffers, following their own ungodly passions.”

(2 Peter 3:14) Therefore, beloved, since you are waiting for these, be diligent to be found by him without spot or blemish, and at peace.

(Jude 24) Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy,
(2 Peter 3:18) But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen. (Jude 25) to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.

** I’m not sure how this will look in your inbox or on the website. As I was preparing this post, the WordPress module kept changing the font within each box. However, when I preview the post, it looks normal. With that said, my apologies if the formatting is all screwy.

1-2 Peter and Jude Bible Study Guide

1-2 Peter, Jude Cover

How does a Christian behave when surrounded by a hostile world? Peter and Jude wrote their epistles to remind hard-pressed Christians, those who were facing the threat of increased persecution and false teaching, to encourage them to face their adversaries with a Christlike character. These three epistles are like beacons of hope for making it through hard times. You will see that the wisdom of these letters is just as applicable today as they were then. All the while you will be reminded that in the midst of suffering that the God who deserves all praise is still “able to keep you from stumbling and present you blameless before the presence of His glory with great joy” (Jude 24).

The latest edition to the Devoted To The Word Bible Study Series is 1-2 Peter & Jude. I pray this work will help you better understand God’s word and navigate through the traps of Satan, persecution and false teaching.

1-2 Peter Jude Bible Study

1 Peter Preview

1-2 Peter, Jude-Coming SoonI’m currently working on a new Devoted To The Word Bible Study Guide on 1-2 Peter & Jude. Here’s the introduction:

How does a Christian behave when surrounded by a hostile world? Peter and Jude wrote their epistles to remind hard-pressed Christians, those who were facing the threat of increased persecution and false teaching, to encourage them to face their adversaries with a Christlike character. These three epistles are like beacons of hope for making it through hard times. You will see that the wisdom of these letters is just as applicable today as they were then. All the while you will be reminded that in the midst of suffering that the God who deserves all praise is still “able to keep you from stumbling and present you blameless before the presence of His glory with great joy” (Jude 24).

So far I’ve completed the questions for 1 Peter. I’m offering this free preview to anyone who might be interested in a quick study of this wonderfully uplifting epistles.

1 Peter Preview

While you’re at it… check out the other books in the Devoted To The Word Bible Study series. As always, all books are free to download and use.

Live Every Day Like It Is The Last Day

Today is October 21, 2011, and according to Harold Camping, the Lord is supposed to return today… again. You might recall that back earlier this year, Harold Camping predicted that the Lord would return on May 21st, well obviously He didn’t (Matthew 25:31-46; 1 Thessalonians 4:16).

It’s little wonder that the likes of Harold Camping and other date setters are unsuccessful in predicting the Lord’s return, because the Lord Himself, in characterizing His return by saying,

“Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour” I will come (Matthew 25:13). 

And, the apostles, Paul and Peter, both established that the Jesus’ return would be unannounced, like a thief coming in the night (cf. Matthew 24:42-44).

“Now concerning the times and the seasons, brothers, you have no need to have anything written to you. For you yourselves are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night” (1 Thessalonians 5:1-2). 

“But the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed” (2 Peter 3:10).

These passages clearly establish that we cannot know the day, nor the hour, that the Lord will return. However, while the passages clearly show that the likes of Harold Camping and other date setters will always fail in their predictions. They do teach us, that as believers, we need to live everyday as if it is our last day on earth. We must live everyday as if it is the day of the Lord’s return. We need to live every day, as if it is the last day we will have breath and life.

Let me ask you a question; are you ready, are you ready to meet your maker? Are you living every day, are you living today, as if it is the last day? The same passages that we would you to establish that Harold Camping is wrong in his predictions, are the same passages that encourage us to live every day as if it is truly our last day.

I hope that you are making preparations in your spiritual life to stand before your Lord and Maker. If I can help you in any way with that, just drop me a line at I would love to hear from you. God bless you.

The Realities of Hell

We live in a time when so many things about our society have succumb to the forces of capitalism and have become commercialized. No longer do families look forward to sitting down together for a Thanksgiving meal but they look forward to the early sales for Christmas. Even the sacred day of rememberance we call Memorial Day is overshawdowed by three day blowout mega sales at the local furniture stores and car dealerships. It seems everthing sacred has become commercialized, even Christianity itself.

Now more than ever churches are more market-conscious when it comes to what aspects of the Bible they present. In the commercialization of Christianity teachings on sin and its eternal consequences, damnation in hell, and Satan are left to the wayside for softer, more audience friendly messages on how Christian living will solve your problems by making your prosperous, or Jesus will solve all your problems, or how you can be a success with God as your CEO. As with anything that is commercialized the goal is numbers and dollars.

What this has done is lead people down a path of denying the reality of something they hear very little about and that is hell. In a 2001 Pew research poll 71% of Amercians said they believed there was a hell[i]. By 2009, that number had fallen to just 59% of Americians believe in hell[ii]. Though it may not be commercially popular, though it may not fit into the persepective of many Americans the reality of the matter the Bible say there really is a hell.

Let’s explore the realities of hell with the purpose of stirring our souls to repentance so that we will not awaken in eternity and find ourselves there.

Hell is a Real Place

While some would think of Hell as just a myth, some place contrived to scare people into submission, the Bible speaks of Hell as a real place. Notice some of the passages with me:

Jesus warned in Matthew 10:28 “Do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Jesus believed hell was a real place.

In His condemnation of the Pharisees Jesus expressed His belief in a hell when He said, “Serpents, brood of vipers! How can you escape the condemnation of hell?” (Matthew 23:33)

Jesus believed hell was real place when He exhorted the multitudes to take extreme measures not to go there when he said, “If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter into life maimed, rather than having two hands, to go to hell, into the fire that shall never be quenched— where ‘Their worm does not die and the fire is not quenched.’ And if your foot causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life lame, rather than having two feet, to be cast into hell, into the fire that shall never be quenched— where ‘Their worm does not die and the fire is not quenched.’ And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye, rather than having two eyes, to be cast into hell fire— where ‘Their worm does not die and the fire is not quenched.’” (Mark 9:43-48)

For a discussion on Jesus’ use of Ghennna as a figure for Hell click here.

The apostle Peter certainly believed hell was real place when he said, “For if God did not spare the angels who sinned, but cast them down to hell and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved for judgment…” (2 Peter 2:4)

Even Jude believed hell was a real place when he taught, “And on some have compassion, making a distinction; but others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire [hell], hating even the garment defiled by the flesh.” (Jude 1:22-23)

In these passages, there is an assumption by the speaker that hell is a real place. To them hell was not a myth. It was not contrived place to keep folks in line. To Jesus, Peter, and Jude hell is a real place. If it’s not… Then Jesus, Peter and Jude at best are mistaken, at worst their misleading. And if they’re either mistaken or misleading then they and the Bible are suspect and we can’t believe any of it. But I choose to believe them.

With Real Punishment

And it’s a real place with real punishment. Think with me about how beautiful and wonderful heaven is. No matter how grand your imagination might be, you can’t begin to scratch the surface of heaven’s beauty. Our human minds can’t comprehend its greatness. The same is true with hell. Even with our collective ability to imagine the horrors of hell we would only scratch its surface. Our human minds can’t comprehend the awfulness of such a place.  So the Bible presents hell and its terrors in terms we can understand. Notice some passages with me:

In hell there will be “darkness” and the “weeping and gnashing of teeth.” (Matthew 8:11-12, 22:13)

In the parable of the Wheat and Tares, Jesus taught that those in hell will be punished by being “burned in the fire” in hell’s “furnace of fire.” (Matthew 13:30, 40-42)

Jesus warned it was better to limp into heaven than to dance into “everlasting fire” of hell.  In hell, those who refused to amputate those things, which caused them to sin, will be eternally punished for their negligence. (Matthew 18:8-9)

Everyone in hell, from the least of sinners to the greatest, Satan himself, will suffer the same punishment of “everlasting fire.” (Matthew 25:41)

Those in hell will be punished by being tormented. First, the eternal fires of hell will torment them. Second, they will be tormented by the anguish of knowing what they should have done and the fate of their loved ones (Luke 16:19-31). Moreover, this torment will last “forever and ever.” (Revelation 20:10)

The imagery used by Jesus, Paul and John paints a picture of hell as being a place with an unquenchable fire, eternal torment, enveloping darkness, with weeping and gnashing of teeth. When God wanted to describe hell to us in human terms He chose the things that we fear the most. Our bodies being burned and the pain and horrors associated with the burning of our flesh. He chose the concept of torture and pain that never ends, that never offers relief. He chose darkness that is so dark in envelopes you; that is so dark it clings to you; that is so dark it makes grow men weep and gnash their teeth. My friends hell is a real place, with real punishment, for real people.

For Real People

I’m afraid that many people have the concept that hell and its punishments are reserved for just the worst of the worst. I’m afraid they believe that hell is reserved for history’s megalomaniacs, for its worst criminals, for its greediest businessmen, and for its vilest politicians. The problem with that line of thinking is that it makes those who are punished in hell larger than life, and the problem with people who are larger than life is that we don’t perceive them as real people. To us real people are normal folks; they’re people who look like us, talk like us, act like us. They’re people we can identify with. But friends notice with me that the Bible says there will be real people in hell:

Common People – It was the common people that Jesus told to take extreme measures to stay out of hell. Why? Because common people will be in hell. (Matthew 5:1 cf. 5:29-30)

Churchgoing People – In the Parable of the Dragnet (Matthew 13:47-50) Jesus taught that even some churchgoing people are going to go to hell. Notice what he said, “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a dragnet that was cast into the sea and gathered some of every kind, which, when it was full, they drew to shore; and they sat down and gathered the good into vessels, but threw the bad away. So it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come forth, separate the wicked from among the just, and cast them into the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth.”

Lazy People – In the Parable of the Talents (Matthew 25:14-30; cf. James 4:17) Jesus taught that, lazy people would be in hell. Lazy people, being those who refused to use the gifts He has given them.

Inattentive People – Jesus taught that those who were inattentive to the needs of others, those who did not maintain good works, will be damned to “everlasting punishment” in hell (Matthew 25:45-46).

Selfish People – In the parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus, Jesus taught that hell would be populated with selfish people like the rich man. Those who were too busy to be bothered by the needs of others because they had their own problems. Selfish people, who were too busy to learn God’s word for themselves because they knew better how to live their lives. Selfish people, who were too busy to share God with their family because they had more important things to do (Luke 16:19-31).

Unbelieving People – Unbelievers will be in hell. According to 2 Thessalonians 1:8-9, unbelievers are those who “do not know God” by not having a relationship with Him and those “who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.” They might be salt of the earth, upstanding good citizens, give the shirt off their back sort of folk but if they will not know God, nor believe Jesus’ gospel they will go to hell.

Sinful People – We know sinners will be in hell but look at what sins will get you sent there… How many of these are you guilty of committing? “But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.” (Revelation 21:8)

Don’t think that you will escape the torments of hell because you’re some no name person who hasn’t killed anybody, or cheated on your spouse, or worshipped an idol, or whatever you would classify a big sin. Hell, my friends, is for real people like you and me who sin and refuse to serve God with our all of our hearts, our souls and our minds. Will there great sinners of history be there? Yes. But for every one great sinner there’ll be 1000 real people like me and you in hell.

What’s the conclusion of the matter? Hell is a real place, with real punishment, for real people. And if you don’t want to go there there’s one thing you need to do and that is to love Jesus. Why? Because Jesus said, “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.” (John 14:15) If you love Jesus, and stay true to Him, He will say to you, “Well done good a faithful servant… Enter into the joy of your Master.” (Matthew 25:21)