The Cry From Hell
"I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to
my father's house: for I have five brethren; that he may testify unto
them lest they also come into this place of torment," cried the
rich man in hell (vv. 27-28). Who in hell cares? Everyone! Christians
must care now.
General William Booth of the Salvation Army said he wished every one
of his soldiers could spend five minutes in hell, for they would then
come back with a greater burden for those around them. A preacher
startled his church one Sunday morning by saying every one of his
members "out to go to hell..." After a pause, he continued,
"..."for five minutes to get their hearts fired up to
witness." A good look at hell in the Word can do just that for us
Take a quick excursion through hell. See the rich man as "in hell
he lifted up his eyes being in torments" (v.23). He is a believer
now! He believes the fire is real. Billy Sunday said, "A lot of
people think that because they don't believe in hell they have put out
the fire and shut the door." "I am tormented in this
flame" (v. 24). The suffering is real. The jokes about hell are
no longer funny.
Notice; he sees Lazarus in comfort and finds "there is a great
gulf fixed" between them (v. 26). How terrible when families will
be separated forever. Will those in hell realize this separation? The
Bible indicates they will! Living without God means dying without
The rich man was conscious. God tells of his eyes seeing, his tongue
feeling, his voice speaking and his mind remembering (vv. 23-25). The
great tragedy is that he did not cry out for mercy until now (v. 24).
If he had only cried out before death, he would not be here; but he
had been too busy enjoying his riches. Better to go to heaven in rags
than to hell in robes. "Behold, now is the day of salvation"
(2 Corinthians 6:2).
Hear him beg for someone to warn his five brothers (v. 28). Someone
you meet today may have a brother in hell or on earth who would beg
you to "warn my brother." Christians who realize what hell
is like ought to be deeply moved to heed this cry and warn the lost.