Q28: What Happens After Death to Those not United to Christ by Faith?

New City Catechism: Question 28


Christians practice catechesis to instruct believers on the foundational truths of the Christian faith. In a question and answer format, this form of discipleship teaches the Apostle’s Creed, the Ten Commandments, the Lord’s Prayer, along with the basics of the Bible. The New City Catechism, created by Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City, asks 52 questions, one for each week of the year, on topics such as God, creation, and salvation. Each video provides an extended answer to the question from either a pastor at Redeemer or council members of the Gospel Coalition. This video with John Lin, Lead Pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church’s Downtown Congregation in New York City, answers the question, "What happens after death to those not united to Christ by faith?”


John 3:16-18 (ESV)

For God So Loved the World

16“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.17For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.

Scripture quotations marked (ESV) are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®, copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.


John 3:36 (ESV)

36 Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.

Scripture quotations marked (ESV) are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®, copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.



We can respond to question twenty-eight with the following answer: at the day of judgment they will receive the fearful but just sentence of condemnation pronounced against them. They will be cast out from the favorable presence of God, into hell, to be justly and grievously punished, forever.


John said all who live apart from Christ, in sin, will receive God’s judgment and wrath in hell. Hell exists as a place of eternal separation from God and His blessings. What stands out to you the most about this answer? Why?
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Understanding the doctrine of hell helps us realize the fulness of God’s love for us. Christ’s death on the Cross saved us from sin, blessed us with righteousness, and rescued us from hell, eternal separation from God.


Does the answer to this question impact your Christian walk? If so, how and why?
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Read through John 3:16–18, 36. Take a moment to reflect on hell. Use the space below to respond. You can write out a prayer, list the implications of hell, or brainstorm ways you can apply the principle to your life.
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The Catechism can help you remember the core beliefs of Christianity. Take time this week to learn the answer to this question and memorize John 3:16–18, 36. Allow God to transform your heart, mind, and actions through the reality of hell.



 To learn more about New City Catechism or to download the app, click here