What heaven will be like?
“Heaven is a place, just as a good deal a place as is New York or Chicago.” ~ Charles Ferguson Ball
Everyone wants to know about heaven and every person desires to go there. Recent polls suggest that nearly 80% of all Americans believe there may be a place known as heaven. I discover that statistic encouraging because it tells me that even on this skeptical age there is something deep inside the human heart that cries out, “There’s were given to be something more. Something more than the pain and suffering of this life. Something more than 70 or 80 years on earth. Something more than being born, residing, death, and then being buried in the ground.
Sometimes we communicate about a “God-fashioned vacuum” in the human heart. I believe there is also a “heaven-formed vacuum,” a sense that we were made for something more than this life. We had been made to stay forever someplace. In a real sense we were made for heaven.
There is another charming statistic I need to mention. Not most effective do most Americans consider in heaven, the general public count on to move there once they die. If you took a microphone to the streets of Chicago and asked, “Do you observed you may go to heaven when you die?” the good sized majority of people might answer, “I hope so,” or “I suppose so,” or perhaps “I think I’ve got an amazing danger. Not very many people would say they aren’t going to heaven. Perhaps one modest point is in order. Whenever you communicate about living forever someplace, it would assist to recognize for sure in which you are going. After all, if you’re wrong about heaven, you will be wrong for a long, long time.
With that as heritage, I flip to recall a number of the most frequently-asked questions about heaven. But before I leap in, I ought to make one preliminary point. The things we are able to know for certain about heaven are the things discovered within the Bible. Everything else is simply speculation and hearsay. The Bible tells us the whole lot we want to realize and I accept as true with it additionally tells us the whole thing we can understand for certain about heaven.
Where is heaven?
There are three things I can tell you in answer to this question.
1). The most essential truth is that heaven is a actual area. Listen to the words of Jesus on the night before he was crucified:
“Do not allow your hearts be anxious. Trust in God; agree with also in me. In my Father’s residence are many rooms; if it were not so, I might have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and put together an area for you, I will come back and take you to be with me which you additionally can be where I am” (John 14:1-3).
Twice in 3 verses Jesus calls heaven a place. He mean that heaven (“my Father’s house”) is a actual region, as real as New York, London or Chicago. The area called heaven is just as real because the place you call home. It’s a real place packed with actual humans, that is why the Bible once in a while compares heaven to a mansion with many rooms (John 14:1-3) and sometimes to an great city teeming with people (Revelation 21).
2). The Bible additionally tells us that heaven is the living place of God. His throne is there, the angels are there, and the Lord Jesus Christ is in heaven. Philippians 3:20 says very evidently that “our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ.” That’s why Jesus instructed the thief on the Cross, “Today you will be with me in paradise” (Luke 23:43).
3). Third (and I find this fact captivating), the Bible guidelines that heaven isn’t always as a long way away as we would think. Because heaven is a real place, we from time to time think it should be out of doors our present universe – which might suggest that it’s miles billions and billions of light years away. However, it’s very clear that the early Christians understood that they might bypass right from this life into the presence of Christ in heaven. How can that be possible if heaven is beyond the farthest galaxy?
Hebrews 12:22-24 tells us something awesome about what the gospel has accomplished for us: “But you have come to Mount Zion, to the heavenly Jerusalem, the town of the living God. You have come to lots upon thousands of angels in completely happy meeting, to the church of the firstborn, whose names are written in heaven. You have come to God, the choose of all men, to the spirits of righteous men made perfect, to Jesus the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a higher word than the blood of Abel.”
The creator is right here evaluating Mt. Sinai with Mt. Zion. Under the vintage covenant nobody may want to come near God except under very strict situations. That’s why the mountain shook with thunder and lightning. [Note: three times the writer of Hebrews uses a Greek word that means “to come near” or “to approach closely.] But now in Christ we have been delivered close to heavenly realities. Think of what he’s pronouncing:
- We’re not that far from heaven.
- We’re not that a ways from the angels.
- We’re not that a ways from our loved ones in heaven.
- We’re not that a long way from God.
- We’re not that far from Jesus himself.
- Heaven is an actual place, it’s in which Jesus is right now, and it is not a ways away from us.
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What heaven will be like?
I would answer by pronouncing that the Bible would not deliver us an exceptional deal of history. What we’ve got are images and picture of heaven and comparisons with life on this planet.
What heaven will be like? Here are 7 biblical records about heaven. It is …
- -God’s dwelling place (Psalms 33:13).
- -Where Christ is today (Acts 1:11).
- -Where Christians go when they die (Philippians 1:21-23).
- -The Father’s residence (John 14:2).
- -A city designed and built by God (Hebrews 11:10).
- -A better Country (Hebrews 11:16).
- -Paradise (Luke 23:43).
Most people have heard that heaven is a place where the streets are paved with gold, the gates are product of pearl, and the partitions product of valuable jewels. Those images come from Revelation 21, which offers us the most prolonged image of heaven in the whole Bible. If you inquire from me if I consider the ones things are actually real, the answer is yes and no. Yes, they may be actually but no, heaven won’t be whatever like we believe. It could be plenty more.
Here’s a lovely legend that makes the point very well
I love the old story of the rich man who, on his death bed, negotiated with God to allow him to carry his earthly treasures with him when he came to heaven. God’s reaction was that this was a most unusual request, but because this man had been quite devoted, permission was granted to deliver alongside just one suitcase. The time arrived, the person offered himself at the pearly gates, suitcase in hand- BOTH fingers, in facty, when you consider that he had crammed it with as many bars of gold bullion as would match. St. Peter stated, “Sorry, you know the rules-you cannot take it with you.” But the man protested, “God said I could … one suitcase.” St. Peter checked, find out that this one might be an exception, organized to permit the man enter, then said, “OK, however I must study the contents before you go.” He took the suitcase, opened it, noticed the gold bars and asked quizzically, “You delivered PAVEMENT?” [Note: This story is from the sermon “Heaven” by Dr. David Leininger, March 30, 1997]
When John writes about a road paved with gold, I do not doubt his words. He clearly reports what he noticed in his vision. Thus his word are literally actual. They are also supposed to tell us that the things we charge so exceedingly in this life might be used to pave the roads in heaven.
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Who is in heaven right now?
This question isn’t tough to reply. God is in heaven because heaven is his residing location. The Lord Jesus has been in heaven ever for the reason that he ascended from the earth shortly after his resurrection (Acts 1:9-11). The Bible tells us that angels are in heaven. In truth there are myriads of angels-uncountable numbers of heavenly beings-they all serving the Lord in diverse ways.
And the saints of God who died on this earth are in heaven. [Note: I mean by this that heaven includes the Old Testament Saints who by faith trusted in God’s Word and looked forward to God’s redemption at Calvary (which they did not fully understand). It also includes every true believer from every continent and every denomination. Everyone who has genuinely trusted in Christ as Lord and Savior will be there. I also think that children who died before the “age of accountability go to heaven and I would also include those born with such mental limitaitons that they cannot understand the gospel.] The Bible teaches that the moment we die we move at once into the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ. Paul mentioned this in 2 Corinthians 5:7-8 and Philippians 1:21-23.
But I do not want to be ambiguous on this point. Not all people are in heaven now. Some humans might not make it. The Bible speaks of the saved and the misplaced. The saved are folks who consider Jesus Christ as their eternal Savior. The misplaced are people who do not accept as true with Christ as Savior. This is the best dividing line of humanity-you are either saved or you’re misplaced. And there is no center category. You will both spend eternity in heaven or eternity in hell.
I really want you to know what God has stated about heaven and who will go there. The saved of all a while may be there – and that significant throng will no doubt include many those who would marvel us if we knew it now. Certainly heaven might be more extremely good than our creativeness and it is populace more numerous than we think.
But I am certain of this one fact. No one will go heaven besides through the grace of God and through the deserves of the blood of Jesus Christ. If a person says “No” to Jesus, he has no hope of heaven.
Will we know each other in heaven?
This is one of the most frequently asked questions on heaven. I would like to share a solution given with the Bible teacher of another generation – a person named William Pettingill. [Note: see the book 1001 Bible Questions Answered, William Pettingill and R.A. Torrey, Inspirational Press, 1997, p. 157. This is a reprint in one volume of two books first published many years ago. I highly recommend it as a handy reference tool for Bible students and Sunday School teachers.] He stated, “We may be certain that we will not understand much less in heaven than we understand right here.”
In proof he charges 1 Corinthians 13:12, “Now we see however a terrible mirrored image as in a replicate; then we will see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall understand fully, while I am absolutely acknowledged.” How does God know us? Answer: He knows us completely, intimately, very well, inner and out, with nothing hidden however the entirety visible as it genuinely is (Psalms 139:1-4; Hebrews 4:12). When we get to heaven we’re going to know each other as God knows us due to the fact all of the imperfections of this life might be eliminated. In this life sin causes us to cowl ourselves-not just physically but emotionally and spiritually. But when sin is ultimately lifted from us, then we can be ourselves with no disgrace, no pain, no embarrassment, and no overlaying up.
Dr. Pettingill concludes that in heaven we will understand every person in heaven and they all will be friends and loved ones to us.
In his very useful book on heaven, W.A. Criswell makes the more points that individual persona survives into eternity. I’ll be the same person then that I am now-simplest with all the imperfections and barriers of sin subsequently eliminated. This is a splendid idea-that the essence of who we’re will stay all through eternity-yet vastly progressed by God’s grace. [Note: W.A. Criswell and Paige Patterson, Heaven, Tyndale House Publishers, 1991, pp. 33-38. He also says that in heaven we can eat all we want and not get fat. I certainly hope he’s right about that.]
That allows me to think about an associated question that people occasionally ask: How antique do we be in heaven? I once heard a preacher say that we are able to all be 33 years old due to the fact it truly is about how antique Jesus was when he died. Of path there’s no scriptural aid for that announcement. The reality is, there might not be any age in heaven in the sense we talk of age on the earth. Growing old is a feature of the decaying effects of sin. I do not agree with that babies who die in infancy can be babies for eternity nor do I consider that individuals who waste away of cancer will seem emaciated in heaven. It may be something else totally – which I can barely explain and actually do not apprehend.
In heaven we can understand every other in detail. That’s why Peter, James and John identified Moses and Elijah, even though they have been dead for loads of years, at the Mount of Transfiguration (Matthew 17:1-9). I do not think they’d nametags on. I assume there was something about those men that made Peter, James and John apprehend them even though they’d by no means seen them before.
That’s why a wife whose husband died when she was young could be capable of pick out her husband out of a crowd of billions of people, even though she hasn’t seen him for fifty years when you consider that he died on earth. In heaven she will say, “Sweetheart! I knew it was you.” And he’s going to recognize her.
How this could be I do not know, but I believe it to be authentic. In heaven there may be no strangers.
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What will we do in heaven?
Again, the Bible doesn’t tell us the whole lot we would really like to know, but of this we can be certain: Heaven may not be dull and it will be more fun than the high-quality celebration you ever attended.
So what’s going to do for all eternity? The solution is, we are going to help God run the universe. Don’t forget the story Jesus told about the man of noble beginning who gave his servants cash to invest? One servant had doubled his cash so the person stated, “You will rule over ten cities.” The next servant had seen a 50% growth so his grasp stated, “Rule over 5 cities.” And the man who hid his money had even that quantity taken from him in punishment (Luke 19:11-27). The tale is an image of what heaven may be like. We will use our gifts to control the new heaven and the brand new earth. Bakers will bake, teachers will teach, singers will sing, and I think that preachers will pontificate. For all I understand, soldiers may additionally march off to war and quarterbacks will throw passes. Think of the plant life the botanists will observe. Gifted astronomers will pass from galaxy to galaxy studying the wonders of God’s creation.
I can assure you this: No one could be sitting around on a cloud eating grapes and sharpening his halo. No, we’re going to all be too busy for that.
Here are five things in an effort to occupy us in heaven. We will …
- Worship without distraction.
- Serve without exhaustion.
- Fellowship without fear.
- Learn without fatigue.
- Rest without boredom.
[Note: this is not original with me. I found this list in a sermon by David Burns, Minister at the Homer Church of Christ, called “Heaven is a Wonderful Place,” Feburary 25, 1996.]
The best part of heaven can be seeing Jesus himself face to face. We will worship the Son of God and have fun his excellent victory over sin at the same time as the infinite a while of eternity roll on and on. The pleasant music you’ve ever heard will faded compared to the tune of heaven. The most terrific worship you’ve experienced on earth is but a dim reflection of the reward we can render across the throne of God.
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How can I make sure I am going to heaven?
This is the most crucial question of all. Here is an extraordinary reality: God has made it easy so that it will go to heaven. He did the difficult things when he sent his Son to die on the Cross for you. He paid the debt to your sins so you could sooner or later stand before God in heaven. Jesus stated, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father besides through me” (John 14:6). He additionally said, “I am the door; if anyone enters through Me, he shall be saved” (John 10:9, NASB). Jesus is not simplest the way to heaven, he is likewise the door to heaven. If you need to go to heaven, you have to undergo the door marked “Jesus Christ.” There is not any other front.
Suppose you were to die and found yourself status at the door of heaven. If God had been to mention, ‘Why have I permit you to into heaven?’ what answer could you provide?
Picture the scene. You are standing on the very gates of heaven. It’s more lovely than you ever dreamed viable. This is in which you need to spend eternity. This is where you belong. But before you input, the Lord himself asks what possible cause you need to claim admission. You pause, understanding that each one eternity hangs to your answer. What will you assert?
Let me make this very private. If you were to die tonight, do you already know for sure which you would go to heaven? I’ve already stated that that is too essential to mention “I think so” or “I hope so.” If you are wrong, you’ll be wrong for a long, long term.
What we need is strong ground on which to face. And we’ve got it in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Our whole hope of heaven is wrapped up in what Jesus did when he died on the cross for the sins of the world and rose from the dead on Easter Sunday morning.
One of our most cherished hymns places it this way:
My hope is built on not anything less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness;
I dare not believe the sweetest body,
But completely lean on Jesus’ name.
On Christ the stable rock I stand;
All other ground is sinking sand;
All other floor is sinking sand.
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That says it all. If you want to go to heaven, you need to base your hope at the strong rock of Jesus’ blood and righteousness. Are you standing on the Rock this morning? Are you thoroughly leaning on Jesus’ name?
No one is going to heaven by way of twist of fate. Heaven is God’s prepared place for organized people. We put together for heaven after which God prepares heaven for us. I’ve already advised you that the majority agree with in heaven and the majority think they may be going there. But are they at the right avenue? Are they building their lives on Jesus Christ-the stable rock? Too many, I fear, are status on sinking sand and do not know it.
What is your hope for heaven? Mine is Jesus Christ. I’ve staked everything I even have on him. If he cannot take me to heaven, then I’m not going there. What about you? When the darkish night time falls, the lights exit, and the waters of death swirl around you, what is going to take place to you then? If you know Jesus, you have not anything to fear. Put your hope in Jesus. Run to the Cross. Stand along with your full weight at the Solid Rock of our salvation. May God help you to accept as true with in Jesus Christ and him on your own for your salvation. And may additionally God supply that we will all meet sooner or later in heaven.
Safe at home. In heaven at last. I’ll be there. What about you?