I Believe in Heaven
Heaven has received a lot of attention in recent years as mega-bestselling books and Hollywood movies have told the astonishing stories of near-death experiences, and “fantastic tales” of people who claim to have made visits to heaven and back.
Folks have been making trips to heaven with amazing regularity lately and each one comes back with outlandish descriptions and rapturous reports about their experience. Yep, it’s true: travelling to heaven and back is where it’s at today – but what are we to make of heavenly tourism and are these supernatural journeys to and from the afterlife genuine or fake?
God’s Word is our surest guide to heaven and the only “travel brochure” that tells us what heaven is really like because it is completely credible and trustworthy.
1 Peter 3:22 (TLB) Now Christ is in heaven, sitting in the place of honor next to God the Father, with all the angels and powers of heaven bowing before Him and obeying Him.
The Bible, God’s Book, is our only reliable, accurate and authoritative source of information about heaven. The Bible is fully sufficient and we have no need for further sensational “special revelation” based on someone’s vision, dream or experience.
John 14:2-3 (NKJV) Jesus said, “In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.”
Heaven is a Real Place
What comes to mind when you think about heaven? People floating around in long white robes with little halos over their heads? Clouds? Harps? Angels? Most people have formed mystical impressions about heaven from television, movies, and books about near-death experiences rather than a careful study of Scripture.
We need a biblical view of heaven, not Hollywood’s view. The New King James Version of the Bible uses the word heaven 532 times in 502 different verses.
“The Bible teaches there are three heavens. The first heaven is where the birds fly. The second heaven is where the stars are, and the third heaven is the abode of God. The first heaven we see by day, and the second heaven we see by night. The third heaven we see by faith.” – Adrian Rogers
Heaven is an awesome place of majestic beauty, splendor and glory. It has a magnificent city, with walls, gates, foundations, streets and a river running through it (Revelation 21:9-22:5).
Heaven is an actual place. It isn’t an idea, a metaphor, a state of mind, a philosophy, a happy thought, or a religious invention of man. Heaven is no figment of the imagination. No, it’s an address – it’s a real location, like New York, London, Paris, Sydney or Rome. Here are ten proofs of the reality of heaven…
- Heaven is the place where God dwells (Isaiah 66:1; Matthew 6:9; 7:21; 10:32-33).
- Heaven is the place where Jesus is right now (Acts1:11; 1 Peter 3:22).
- Heaven is the place Jesus promised us and called “Father’s house” (John 14:1-3).
- Heaven is a place called our heavenly homeland and a city (Hebrews 11:16).
- Heaven is the place of every true believer’s citizenship (Philippians 3:20). You can’t have legitimate citizenship in a place that doesn’t exist.
- Heaven is the place where God’s throne is (Psalm 103:19).
- Heaven is a place where only those who are born again can enter (John 3:3, 7).
- Heaven is the place where the names of believers are registered (Luke 10:20).
- Heaven is the place where the Christian can lay up treasure (Matthew 6:20).
- Heaven is the place where Christians go when they die (Philippians 1:21-23). Paul acknowledged that he desired death so that he could be with Christ (Philippians 1:23). For a true believer death means to “be absent from the body and to be at home with the Lord” (2 Corinthians 5:8).
Heaven is a Place of No Mores
Many things that we are accustomed to experiencing here on earth will be 100% absent in heaven. The absence of negative things will contribute immensely to our sense of joy and celebration in heaven.
Revelation 21:27 (NLT) Nothing evil will be allowed to enter heaven, nor anyone who practices shameful idolatry and dishonesty – but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.
Revelation 22:3 (AMP) There shall no longer exist there anything that is accursed (detestable, foul, offensive, impure, hateful, or horrible).
Based on Revelation chapters 21 and 22, heaven may be described as the blessed place of “no mores.”
- There will be no more sin, no sickness, no sorrow, no death, no funeral homes, no hospitals, no abortion clinics, no divorce courts, no brothels, no bankruptcy courts, no psychiatric wards, and no treatment centers.
- There will be no more bad news, no talk shows, no soap operas, no politics, no politicians, no wars, no oppression, no fear, no stress, no financial worries, no emotional heartaches, no physical pain, no spiritual backsliding, no relational divisions, no resentment, no rivalry, no murders, and no jails.
- There will be no more perversion, no pornography, no poverty, no terrorism, no teen suicide, no AIDS, no cancer, no dementia, no diabetes, no heart attacks, no crime, no rape, no missing children, no drug problems, no school shootings, no racial tension, no prejudice, no hate, and no sinners.
- There will be no more tears, no suffering, no starvation, no strife, no separations, no loneliness, no arguments, no discord, no accidents, no emergency departments, no doctors, no nurses, no heart monitors, no cancer wards, no corruption, no rust, no perplexing questions, no false prophets, no false cults, no financial shortages, no hurricanes, no bad habits, no decay, and no locks.
- There will be no more greed, no jealousy, no envy, no selfishness, no arrogance, no pride, no misunderstandings, no quarrels, no disagreements, no disunity, no injustice, no discouragement, no disappointments, no hurtful words, no gossip, no hurt feelings, no worry, no emptiness, and no child abuse.
In heaven we will never need to repent and confess sin. Never need to apologize again. Never need to straighten out a strained relationship. Never have to resist the devil or demons. Never have to resist temptation. Never have to deal with depression. Never again!
Heaven is the Home of the Redeemed
One of the Bible’s greatest truths is that we were not meant for this world alone. We were meant for heaven – and for every true believer in Christ heaven is our ultimate home.
The Bible is clear that eternal life in heaven is made possible only through knowing God personally.
John 17:3 (NIV) Now this is eternal life: that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom You have sent.
There’s a great line from an old spiritual that says, “Everybody talkin’ ’bout heaven ain’t goin’ there.” Mere talk about heaven won’t get us there. Reading books about the afterlife won’t get us there. The only thing that will get us to heaven is personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 6:23).
Heaven isn’t for good people. Heaven is for forgiven people! You must say, “God I’m sorry for my sin,” and turn from it, and receive the Savior. Jesus alone is God’s Savior. Faith in Jesus is the only way of salvation. Your life can be changed by Jesus Christ (Acts 4:12).
“I want to know one thing, the way to heaven; how to land safe on that happy shore. God Himself has condescended to teach the way; for this end He came from heaven. He hath written it down in a book. Give me that book! At any price give me the Book of God!” – John Wesley
Heaven is closed to all unbelievers. It may not be politically correct, but Jesus said not everyone will go to heaven when they die. He declared you must be born again to enter heaven (John 3:3, 7).
The only way we can know that we will get to heaven is if we believe the words of Jesus when He said, “I am THE way, and THE truth, and THE life…” Not a way but THE way! Jesus finished by saying, “No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6).
“I have a great need for Christ: I have a great Christ for my need.” – Charles Spurgeon
Heaven is a prepared place for a prepared people… only those who are genuinely born again possess heavenly citizenship (Philippians 3:20). Are you born again? Have you been saved? Are you a child of God? Have you received God’s offer of salvation? That is the greatest issue in all of life (Romans 10:13).
The gospel, which means “good news,” is that while we are sinners, the Lord Jesus Christ is our Savior. He came to earth and died in our place on the cross as our sin-bearing substitute (Romans 5:6-11).
Jesus is alive today! We serve a LIVING CHRIST not a dead savior. And because of His death and resurrection, God’s amazing grace has now opened the door for forgiveness and eternal life to be embraced by all who will believe the gospel and receive Jesus as their Lord and Savior (Acts 16:31).
Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian. Even reading the Bible and helping others doesn’t make you a Christian. There has to be a definite decision of faith when you put your trust in Jesus. Don’t trust in yourself and your good deeds, but turn to Jesus now and trust Him alone for your salvation. It is the life-changing moment that will settle once and for all your place in heaven (Romans 10:9-10).
“Death for the Christian cuts the cord that holds us captive in this present evil world so that angels may transport believers to their heavenly inheritance. Death is the fiery chariot, the gentle voice of the King, the invitation to nonstop passage into the banquet house of the world of glory!” – Billy Graham
Heaven is the place where God dwells – it is God’s holy habitation. He created it, He lives there, and some day so shall all believers. At the moment of death, you and I as Christians literally depart the land of the dying to go to the land of the truly living. Heaven is the future destination of every born again follower of Jesus.
I believe in heaven, do you? Have you ever seriously thought about heaven? More importantly, are you totally confident that you will go there when you die?