“If your eye causes you to stumble, pluck it out and throw it from you. It is better for you to enter life with one eye, than to have two eyes and be cast into the fiery hell” (Matthew 18:9).
Some would expect these harsh words to be directed toward pagan nations, not faithful followers. Such has always been the case, however. God utilized the prophets to speak messages of warning to his own people. Even Peter says judgment will begin in the household of God (1 Peter 4:17). Though some consider the doctrine of hell and judgments of eternal condemnation incompatible with a loving God, it is the most loving person the world has ever known speaking these words to his own disciples. Our influence serves a Providential role in shaping the fate of many…if not our own.