Nearly 40,000 people came to Phoenix, Arizona on Sunday to hear Greg Laurie preach about Heaven and Hell at the annual Harvest America revival event.
About 38,000 people attended this year’s Harvest America at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Arizona, where Laurie clarified views about God, Heaven and Hell.
Laurie, senior pastor at Harvest Christian Fellowship in Riverside, California, said that many people have wrong ideas about God and that many believe that Jesus is watching, ready to say “sic ’em” like one would say to a dog.
“People have a lot of weird ideas about God, like he’s perpetually in a bad mood, and wants to ruin our lives,” the pastor said, as reported by Christianity Daily.
“Nothing can be further from the truth … You want to know what God is like, look at Jesus. Just like the father ran to the son [when he returned home] – that’s what God will do for you when you come back to him,” he added.
The evangelist contended that a bad person can end up in Heaven and noted that the place is not for good people. “It is for forgiven people,” Laurie clarified.
Laurie said that the “last thing God wants” is for anyone to spend eternity in Hell because that place was not prepared for people but for the “devil and his angels.” He warned that those who reject God will end up in Hell unless they repent.
“The clock is ticking, and before you know it, life could end,” the pastor said. “How do you know you’re going to live to be an old man or an old woman? …it’s not guaranteed,” he continued.
The evangelist urged the people gathered at the event to accept Christ in their life by admitting that they have sinned, recognize that Christ died for their sins and repent.
At the event, Laurie told the audience about his own life story before he came to Christ. He noted that he was not raised in the church and that he grew up in a dysfunctional home. He never met his biological father, and his mother was a “raging alcoholic” who got married seven times. When he was a teenager, he experimented with drugs like LSD, and at some point, he was smoking weed daily.
During that time, the Jesus movement was beginning to grow, and at age 17, Laurie heard an evangelist named Lonnie say that people could either be for Jesus or against Him.
Laurie realized that he was not for Him, but he did not want to be against Him in sin any longer, so he accepted Christ into his life.
Apart from Laurie’s message, the event also featured performances from music artists including Jordin Sparks, NEEDTOBREATHE, MercyMe, Trip Lee, and Phil Wickham.
The event was viewed by 42,000 people online from 83 countries, and thousands more who gathered at 3,758 host sites. The Christian Post reported that 2,904 people made the decision to follow Christ at the event, and 494 registered their commitment online.