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It’s as Hot as Hell Out There

In my first summer as a South Carolina resident, I have endured a drought in June and severe thunderstorms in July. However, as August is about to begin, temperatures are expected to reach triple digits. When you add in the extreme humidity, some may suggest “it’s as hot as hell outside.” This idiom comes from an ancient proverb comparing the Bible’s description of hell with hot summer days.

Then He will say to those at His left hand, Begone from Me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels! – Matthew 25:41

One chapter in the Gospels is devoted to what heaven will be like, Matthew 25. Yet, on the other side of heaven is hell. Jesus describes hell as a place of eternal punishment for those who were kicked out of heaven, Isaiah 14:12. This cursed destination is unlike any summer heatwave on earth. Like an active volcano, there is a river of fire which is filled with brimstone and Sulphur.

Then the fifth angel blew [his] trumpet, and I saw a star that had fallen from the sky to the earth; and to the angel was given the key [a]of the shaft of the Abyss (the bottomless pit). He opened the [b]long shaft of the Abyss (the bottomless pit), and smoke like the smoke of a huge furnace puffed out of the [c]long shaft, so that the sun and the atmosphere were darkened by the smoke from the long shaft, Revelation 9:1-2.

One of Jesus’ former disciples has a vision of what hell will be like. While looking through a shaft, John sees a bottomless pit. Based upon the description in the passage above, hell is like working in an old coal mine except you can’t leave. As for now, heatwaves will continue until September. While it’s never a pleasant experience to be drenched in sweat, make the best of summer until the cool winds of fall arrive.

by Jay Mankus

The Anti-Agitation Formula

When you find yourself churning, stirring or tossing, the signs of agitation are near.  Before a full emotion outburst occurs, irritation builds and builds prior to exploding.  Whenever I’m cranky or tired, the conditions for agitation are ideal.  Thus, if I don’t react quickly, those around me will feel the wrath of agitation.

If you bite and devour each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other, Galatians 5:15.

Prior to dropping off my oldest son James at college last weekend, I didn’t get enough sleep.  Thus, after a long drive on Thursday and getting lost on Friday, I snapped.  I couldn’t keep my frustration in any longer.  Like a volcano, agitation was unleash in an unpleasant display.  I should have known better, but I was careless, skipping my morning time reading the Bible and praying.

Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you, Colossians 3:13.

While there are several passages that deal with agitation, the verse above provides a blue print for overcoming agitation.  First, as soon as you mess up, apologize and confess any wrong doing.  If you’re the victim of agitation, the apostle Paul urges believers to bear with one another.  Despite how painful it may be, forgive others as God forgives you.  When this principle is put into practice, perhaps you will find an anti-agitation formula.

by Jay Mankus



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