Heaven!

Certainly one day all believers in Jesus will be changed in the twinkling of an eye from the perishable to the imperishable, from the mortal to the immortal and death, Scripture tells us, will be swallowed up in victory. Hallelujah!

“Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world.” (John 17:24)

It is the desire of our Savior to be in communion and fellowship with His followers throughout all eternity. He comforts us with these words earlier in John as well. He wants us to be with Him, sharing in His glory:

“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.” (John 14:1-3)

I declare to you, brothers, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed–in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality. When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.”
-1 Corinthians 15:50-54
We are eternal beings though our natural body is perishing and our mortal frames will one day expire. Whether we choose to believe this fact or not does not negate its truth. Our physical bodies are mortal, but we have immortal souls. One day, depending on our response to Jesus Christ, each one of us will either be with the Lord Jesus throughout eternity or be separated from Him in a place our Lord repeatedly described as a place of “weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

Those of us who cling to the truth of Christianity–that apart from belief in the Lord Jesus Christ and His redeeming work for us on the cross we remain eternally damned–should certainly be motivated to share the good news of Jesus Christ with others. The apostle Paul was a master at tirelessly presenting the Gospel. He took seriously the ministry of reconciliation that all believers have been entrusted with:

So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. (2 Corinthians 5:16-21)

Take It to Heart

For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage each other with these words.
-1 Thessalonians 4:16-18

“Most of us find it very difficult to want ‘Heaven’ at all–except in so far as ‘Heaven’ means meeting again our friends who have died. One reason for this difficulty is that we have not been trained: our whole education tends to fix our minds on this world. Another reason is that when the real want for Heaven is present in us, we do not recognize it. Most people, if they had really learned to look into their own hearts, would know that they do want, and want acutely, something that cannot be had in this world. There are all sorts of things in this world that offer to give it to you, but they never quite keep their promise.” (C.S. Lewis)

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