Jesus didn’t talk much about hell, but he did talk a lot about love. He revised the commandments, now there are two: Love God and love your neighbor as yourself.
ALL the law and the prophets, he outrageously said, are summed up in two.
He said people would know we are Christians by the love we have for one another. If you are spewing hatred, brethren and sisterns, you are in serious trouble. One time he clearly talked about hell was in the story of the sheep and the goats.
Growing up on a farm, I raised sheep and goats and they do have very different worldviews. And by the way, the main characteristic of sheep is not that they are stupid, but that they are lovable. Goats are, shall we say, more challenging.
The goats are going to the left, they are going to hell. The sheep are going to the right, they are going to heaven. What is the criteria for this selection?
The sheep: For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’ When did they do this? ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’
The goats did not give Jesus food, drink, shelter, clothes, care when sick, a visit when in prison. When did they not? Whenever they failed to do it for the least of these, they failed to do it for Jesus. What separates the sheep from the goats is love, loving your neighbor as yourself-which you will do if you love God. “If you love me, you will keep my commandments. Mother Teresa, when asked why she bothered with destitute, dying people said, “That is Jesus in a distressing disguise.”
If you claim to be a Christian and denigrate the poor, complain about food they get from your tax dollars, whine about universal health care, sneer at the homeless, absolutely despise prisoners, then you are hating God. If you hate God, heaven itself would be hell for you, so trot along to the left.
You claim to believe the Bible? Better read this passage-and re-read it until it sinks in. He is speaking plainly here. He is speaking to you-if you have ears to hear.