Testimony shared online, 2012; rewritten for clarity, 2015
I had a personal encounter with the Lord in 1999. He chose to be merciful to me. I had given my life to Jesus seven years earlier, but was not quite living right. I didn't have the privilege to experience what other messengers of God who were taken up now talk about. All I received on the fateful day was a warning - nothing more!
I was in a severely hot environment with numerous people. There was so much suffering and wailing there. It was the place of torment, called Hades. Hades also known as Sheol, is a temporary/waiting place where unrighteous souls are kept when they die, to suffer constant torment until the Day of Judgment, when they will be thrown into the Lake of Fire (Eternal Hell).
I must have been in the place for a few minutes, for I soon found myself standing in front of the Lord. He specifically told me that everything was fine with me, but one sin that I failed to repent of earned me a place in Hades - just one! I took a drastic decision later in life because of this encounter, and made up my mind never to look back. What if I was not warned? I still keep thinking, today. What if that was it - I never woke up? The God of many chances was indeed merciful to me.
The Lord is coming for a spotless bride. Do not let anyone on social media, a church, or a ministry deceive you into believing that God accepts sins once in a while; He does not. The Bible says that His eyes are too pure to behold iniquity (Habakkuk 1:13). He does forgive our sins when we confess them, but repentance is crucial, and must never be neglected. There is a chance to repent for as long as we are alive.
*Dear One: Don't spend precious time pondering over what my "one sin" could have been. Accept this testimony as a warning that just one sin (no matter how big or small it seems) can hinder you from making it to Heaven. No one will make up a story of having experienced torment in Hades, just to appear righteous - it is unheard of. They would rather tell you they made it to Paradise, for a few minutes of fame, perhaps. Think about it!
Here is the danger of failing to take heed: If you do not quickly repent of your ways, and your journey on earth suddenly ends, you know now what will happen from this message. Even though a lot of people have a problem accepting the truth, tomorrow is promised to no one - not even the righteous. Repent and turn your life over to Jesus today.