Dr. John Gerstner explains the hopelessness and depravity of those we assume should be the happiest: celebrities, the rich and famous, and people of power.
- In the afterlife the unredeemed are fixed in a state of depravity and unholiness from which they can never escape
- We are born in this world dead in trespasses and in sins and all the days of our lives we grow in perversity
- The unregenerate continue to grow in their depravity
- The unregenerate have much room for “deprovement”
- The unregenerate continue in this state all of the days of their miserable lives and even forever into the afterlife
- The fallen people in this world are never happy
- All the wealth and power and prestige they possess are temporary forms of anesthesia to keep them from remembering how miserable they really are
- They get drunk and use drugs or use power and other things to escape their miseries
- In this life the wicked have temporary ways to dull their pain
- The unredeemed are stupid and foolish to confuse these things with “pleasure”
- Those without Christ will do anything to keep themselves from remembering how desolate and empty his or her life is
- What death means for these people is that there is now no relief or temporary “fixes” available to them
- In the afterlife there is no “anesthesia” and they have no possibility to be relieved from their wickedness and vanity – there is no rest from it
- In hell there is no way to divert themselves from their misery
The Good News:
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Mark 8:36 – “For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world, and forfeit his soul?
Psalm 49:16-17 – Do not be afraid when a man becomes rich, When the glory of his house is increased; For when he dies he will carry nothing away; His glory will not descend after him.
Luke 6:24-25 – “But woe to you who are rich, for you are receiving your comfort in full. Woe to you who are well-fed now, for you shall be hungry. Woe to you who laugh now, for you shall mourn and weep.
Luke 12:15-21 – Then He said to them, “Beware, and be on your guard against every form of greed; for not even when one has an abundance does his life consist of his possessions. And He told them a parable, saying, “The land of a rich man was very productive. And he began reasoning to himself, saying, ‘What shall I do, since I have no place to store my crops?’ Then he said, ‘This is what I will do: I will tear down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. ‘And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years to come; take your ease, eat, drink and be merry.”‘ “But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your soul is required of you; and now who will own what you have prepared?’ So is the man who stores up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.”
1 Timothy 6:9 – But those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a snare and many foolish and harmful desires which plunge men into ruin and destruction.
Luke 18:25 For it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.
James 1:11 For the sun rises with a scorching wind and withers the grass; and its flower falls off and the beauty of its appearance is destroyed; so too the rich man in the midst of his pursuits will fade away.
James 5:1 Come now, you rich, weep and howl for your miseries which are coming upon you.
Revelation 6:14-17 The sky was split apart like a scroll when it is rolled up, and every mountain and island were moved out of their places. Then the kings of the earth and the great men and the commanders and the rich and the strong and every slave and free man hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains; and they said to the mountains and to the rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the presence of Him who sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb; for the great day of their wrath has come, and who is able to stand?”
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