â€œThe wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God.â€ (Psalm 9:17)
The subject of hell is widely ignored today, even by evangelical teachers and pastors. Heaven is commonly mentioned at funerals, of course, since almost everyone attending a funeral wants to think that the deceased has gone there (assuming there turns out to be such a place). Hell is rarely acknowledged as even a possibility, on the other hand, even for mobsters or other criminals.
Nevertheless, hell is real and it is going to be more fully populated than heaven. The Lord Jesus said (and He should know!), â€œBroad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: . . . narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find itâ€ (Matthew 7:13-14).
But just who are the â€œwickedâ€ that will be turned into hell? According to the Bible, â€œthere is none righteous, no, not oneâ€ (Romans 3:10), and â€œthe whole world lieth in wickednessâ€ (1 John 5:19). By the principle of Hebrew poetic parallelism, our text would indicate that â€œthe wickedâ€ are those who â€œforget God,â€ where the connotation of â€œforgetâ€ is â€œbecome oblivious to.â€
Can whole nations become oblivious to the true God of creationâ€”and do business and legislate and conduct all their affairs just as though God no longer existed? If so, those nations (or at least those citizens of those nations who practice such wickedness) are in mortal danger. â€œThou puttest away all the wicked of the earth like drossâ€ (Psalm 119:119).
But â€œChrist died for the ungodlyâ€ (Romans 5:6) and â€œblessed are all they that put their trust in himâ€ (Psalm 2:12). We who trust Christ therefore surely need to work and pray earnestly for our nation, and its people, that they return to genuine love of God and His Word. HMM