God said, “I overthrew some of you as I overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah. You were like a burning stick snatched from the fire, yet you have not returned to me” (Amos 4:11). Peter later wrote, “The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything in it will be burned up” (II Peter 2:10).
God’s plan is to save us from the conflagration. Why then are people unwilling to be “plucked out of the burning?” (K.J.V., Amos 4:11). All God wants is to save us. There is everything to gain in following Jesus and eternal torment in rejecting or ignoring God’s grace. Sodom and Gomorrah are proof positive that fire and brimstone are God’s way of dealing with an unfaithful, ungrateful people. That will never change. But for the willing, God will pluck us as firebrands from the burning.
There is absolute salvation in Jesus. There is absolute hell for those apart from the Lord. In the end that’s what this life is all about. We exist in a crucible, but we can be a “brand plucked from the burning,” if we let Jesus save us.