Is Preaching About Hell ‘Spiritual Abuse?’

Although some ministry leaders may, Nik Walker doesn’t preach on the subject of hell just to frighten people. He’s not a “fire-and-brimstone” type of preacher.

The founder of Nik Walker Ministries and a protégé of Perry Stone, the 26-year-old Walker knows hell is a sensitive subject and he doesn’t approach it lightly.

There are some who are opposed to hearing a sermon on the very real existence of hell, something Walker came upon when a friend alerted him to a recent social media post.

The post read: “The use of the concept of hell to motivate faith is spiritual abuse.”

The post reminded Walker of a time when he was still in high school and he had just preached on the subject of hell as an “actual, literal place.” Soon after, a teacher approached him and told him his words were simply “fear-mongering.”

Walker says he’s been “guilted’ for preaching on hell during his entire time in ministry. But Walker asks the question, “What exactly is spiritual abuse in the context of preaching on hell?”

“The first thing I want to say is that hell is not a concept. Hell is not an idea, it’s not an afterthought,” Walker says. “It is not a fear-mongering tactic. Hell is real, and not a concept of our imagination. It’s not an idea that somebody came up with. It is an actual, literal place where Satan was cast into when he was cast out of heaven. Before he came to the earth, he has an actual place under the earth called hell.

“When someone comes up to me and says I shouldn’t be preaching on that concept to get people saved, the first thing I say is that it’s not a concept. I wouldn’t preach on it if it wasn’t real. Furthermore, I would even suggest that if you have a fear of the Lord come over you when you talk about hell, why would you be afraid of something that is not real? Why you would even be afraid of that place if it wasn’t real?

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“Secondly, hell was not made for you or me or any of us. We were made for heaven. We were made to enjoy the presence of the Lord together. We were made to have family and communion and fellowship with God. Thirdly, we send ourselves to hell. People have asked me ‘why does God send people to hell?’ It’s scriptural that God does not send people to hell. We, by our actions and the life we live here on earth, determine our eternity. You determine the next phase of your life.”

Walker says you will hear one of two things when you stand in judgment at the end: Jesus will look at you and say, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant.’ Or, He’s going to look at you and say ‘depart from Me, I don’t know you.'”

Everything he knows about hell, Walker says, is what he learned from Jesus and the Bible.

“Jesus preached on hell with many of His parables,” Walker says. “In fact, He told a story in the Book of Luke and it wasn’t a parable, it was an actual story about two men that died. One went to heaven and one went to hell. He talked about all of the things that were in hell. He talked about the things that went on there. He talked about the unforgiving debtor was released to tormenters, where there was weeping and gnashing of teeth.

“He talked about how the man that was improperly dressed at the wedding party was cast into outer darkness where this is weeping and gnashing of teeth. So, before you start calling people who preach on hell a spiritual abuser, think about this: If you think that way, then Jesus must have been the ultimate spiritual abuser because He taught on this.

“If you don’t want to spend any time with God on earth; if you don’t want to walk with God on earth; if you don’t want to have fellowship and family with God on earth, then why would you want to spend forever with Him? So, there is a place that is called hell where people go who did not follow Jesus. It’s a real thing, and it’s a dangerous thing. It’s an eternal place where we will go if we don’t surrender our life to him. … The good news is that it is His will that no one shall perish but that all people should come to repentance as a way of escape. His name is Jesus and He love you.”

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Shawn A. Akers is the online editor at Charisma Media.

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