This World Is Not Our Home
What the Bible says about heaven has come to the forefront of my thinking this week with the memorial service of Levi Thomas.
It had been 12 years since I had done a memorial service and so it was long past due for me to refresh my memory on what the Bible says about heaven.
I hope that by writing this article, it will give both comforts to those that have lost loved ones, and encourage those still here on earth to call upon the Lord while there is still time to do so.
A Bible Verse About Heaven
The Rich Man and Lazarus
19 Jesus said, “There was a certain rich man who was splendidly clothed in purple and fine linen and who lived each day in luxury. 20 At his gate lay a poor man named Lazarus who was covered with sores. 21 As Lazarus lay there longing for scraps from the rich man’s table, the dogs would come and lick his open sores. 22 “Finally, the poor man died and was carried by the angels to be with Abraham. The rich man also died and was buried, 23 and his soul went to the place of the dead. 2 There, in torment, he saw Abraham in the far distance with Lazarus at his side. 24 “The rich man shouted, ‘Father Abraham, have some pity! Send Lazarus over here to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue. I am in anguish in these flames.’
25 “But Abraham said to him, ‘Son, remember that during your lifetime you had everything you wanted, and Lazarus had nothing. So now he is here being comforted, and you are in anguish. 26 And besides, there is a great chasm separating us. No one can cross over to you from here, and no one can cross over to us from there.’ 27 “Then the rich man said, ‘Please, Father Abraham, at least send him to my father’s home. 28 For I have five brothers, and I want him to warn them so they don’t end up in this place of torment.’ 29 “But Abraham said, ‘Moses and the prophets have warned them. Your brothers can read what they wrote.’LUKE 16:19-31
30 “The rich man replied, ‘No, Father Abraham! But if someone is sent to them from the dead, then they will repent of their sins and turn to God.’
31 “But Abraham said, ‘If they won’t listen to Moses and the prophets, they won’t listen even if someone rises from the dead.’”
What Is Heaven Like?
The Bible says that there is no lack in heaven
You will notice in that parable that Lazarus was in heaven and had everything that the rich man needed in hell. He even had the basic necessity of water, cool air, and most importantly a lack of torment.
Remember that heaven is the place where God lives. Can you imagine God living in a place that has any lack? I can’t!
So if you are wondering what the conditions are that your loved one is now experiencing, do not fret. All of their needs are met.
The Bible teaches that Jesus has prepared a place in heaven
Jesus talked about Heaven in John 14:1-6. Here we will find another lesson on what the Bible teaches about heaven.
I AM THE WAY, AND THE TRUTH, AND THE LIFE
1 “Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. 2 There is more than enough room in my Father’s home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? 3 When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am. 4 And you know the way to where I am going.” 5 “No, we don’t know, Lord,” Thomas said. “We have no idea where you are going, so how can we know the way?”
6 Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.
Jesus said that if He left this earth, He would be preparing a place for us.
Now I find that extremely comforting and exciting.
You see, it is the personal touch.
Heaven is not some big commune where we all have to have some type of uniformity and all do the same thing. Jesus is preparing a room in His father’s mansion for each and every one of us. Not some sterile 8×10 cubicle, but a room especially prepared for us.
Now I know that He was using symbolism to get across a spiritual reality, so I do not expect a literal mansion or a literal room, but I know that Heaven is prepared especially for me and you.
The Bible says that we will have new bodies in heaven
The Apostle Paul reveals in 2 Corinthians 5:1-6 some additional information on what we can expect in heaven.
2 Corinthians 5:1-6
OUR HEAVENLY DWELLING
1 For we know that when this earthly tent we live in is taken down (that is, when we die and leave this earthly body), we will have a house in heaven, an eternal body made for us by God himself and not by human hands. 2 We grow weary in our present bodies, and we long to put on our heavenly bodies like new clothing. 3 For we will put on heavenly bodies; we will not be spirits without bodies. 4 While we live in these earthly bodies, we groan and sigh, but it’s not that we want to die and get rid of these bodies that clothe us. Rather, we want to put on our new bodies so that these dying bodies will be swallowed up by life. 5 God himself has prepared us for this, and as a guarantee he has given us his Holy Spirit.
Paul in his letter to the Corinthians said that when our earthly tent is destroyed, we will be given a heavenly home by God. Now I find his use of tent and home of particular interest. Notice the earthly body is looked upon as just a tent, but our heavenly body is looked upon as a home. When we get to heaven, our body will be much more than what we ever had on earth. It will not be plagued with sickness, aging, or the limitations our earthly body has here.
Paul further states that to be absent from our earthly body is to be present with Jesus. That when we are gone from this earth, we will be in the presence of Jesus Himself.
Now for those of us that know and love Him, that is an awesome thought.
I am waiting with bated breath for the day I get to meet the one who has given me so much just so I can personally express how much I have appreciated everything He has done.
How Can You Know You Will Go To Heaven?
Jesus said that He was the only way to heaven.
Re-read John 14. He said that no one comes to the Father except through Him.
The Bible says that it is appointed once for a man to die and then there is a judgment. (Heb. 9:27)
Now, this judgment is not about how good or bad you were. It is about whether or not you chose to take the path Jesus paid for, and the path God chose for people to be able to get to heaven.
The most important thing is that you need to know Jesus personally. The Bible says that heaven is an RSVP event.
That Jesus even today is knocking on the door of your heart and waiting for you to ask Him in and that when you do then your seat is reserved. (Rev. 3:20)
I would encourage you today, that if you have not reserved your seat if you do not know beyond a shadow of a doubt that you have experienced that personal relationship with Jesus, to go to Peace With God and do so.
Your life on earth will be drastically changed for the better and you will have the assurance that you too will get to go to heaven.