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Imagine living in a place where there is never any darkness, ever. God is the light and it is enough to keep everything lit with no shadows or darkness at all.
No darkness…All light…
But the fact that there is no darkness there also indicates there is no moral darkness either. Conversations are pure. There is no filthiness or filthy talk. There are no awful, abusive words. There is no mean-spiritedness. Heaven is where there is the presence of God and His attributes. It is hard to imagine kindness, love, justice, joy, righteousness, holiness, love, graciousness…and nothing about it is fake. It is all genuine. There is no hypocrisy or deviousness. That is all going to be in Hell.
Heaven is so difficult to imagine. We only have some of what the Bible tells us to go on. And some of what it tells us is from visions that are often difficult to interpret. What do those images stand for? There is some disagreement. However, there are a few things that are agreed on. This is one of them.
And I saw no temple in the city, for its temple is the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb. And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and its lamp is the Lamb. By its light will the nations walk, and the kings of the earth will bring their glory into it, and its gates will never be shut by day—and there will be no night there. They will bring into it the glory and the honor of the nations. But nothing unclean will ever enter it, nor anyone who does what is detestable or false, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s book of life.
Revelation 21:22-27 ESV
Many of these prophecies are truncated into one when we look from a distance
Just as many of the prophecies about Messiah were truncated together. They seemed like one coming from a distance. But in reality, there was more than one coming. Jesus as the One to come to save us from our sin and later, to come in power and glory at the end of the world.
Obviously, the new heavens and new earth aren’t going to happen until this earth is finished. But our view of heaven before that time shouldn’t be diminished, I don’t think. Our glorious Jesus will still be there. When I think of heaven, I tend to truncate everything together. It may not be totally accurate theologically, but from a practical standpoint, certainly much won’t be missing, will it? God and His attributes will all be there. We will be there based on the merits of Jesus. We may be spirits and not have our glorified bodies yet. I’m not sure. I do know that we will enjoy it.
Then again, once we are in the eternal realm, it may be like the Second Coming has already happened. Who knows? It will be interesting to see. Whatever happens, it will be wonderful. It will be light and beautiful and Jesus will be there!
A precise theologian I am not…but I need them in my life for sure to keep me from veering off track.
Can you tell I’m not a precise theologian? I know it is important for someone to be. It’s just not my gift. I do want to understand how theology has practical implications for my life. That is very important. But there are things we can’t be completely certain about because the Bible is obscure about them. One is many of the fine details of heaven and another is many of the fine details of the Second Coming.
This week, think about how living with thoughts of heaven in mind will encourage you and give you hope, particularly as you live through times of suffering.