31-38 “Heaven” Chapters’ Insight

       ♣ ♣ ♣ Chapter 31 Important Information Right Off The Bat

Ξ “Will we be capable of sinning? . . . Can we know we won’t sin? Christ promises on the New Earth, “There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away” (Revelation 21:4). Since “the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23), the promise of no more death is a promise of no more sin. Those who will never die can never sin, since sinners always die.”

Ξ “Sin causes mourning, crying, and pain. If those will never occur again, then sin can never occur again.”

Ξ “We need not fear a second Fall.” The last part of Revelation 21:4 says “For the old order of things has passed away.”

Ξ “We won’t sin in Heaven for the same reason God doesn’t: He cannot sin.”

Ξ “That Satan and evildoers are cast forever into the lake of fire (Revelation 20:10 and 21:8) shows an eternal separation of evil from the New Earth. Heaven will be completely devoid of evil, with no threat of becoming tainted.”

Ξ “Our . . . new beings will be immune to corruption. Since the wages of sin is death, if we cannot die, then we cannot sin.”

Ξ As far as having a free will in Heaven to sin, we have been “made righteous by Christ . . . To suggest we could have Christ’s righteousness yet sin is to say Christ could sin. (My own note: That’s absurd because Christ cannot ever sin!) God completely delivers us from sin – including vulnerability to sin.”

Ξ “Because our hearts will be pure and we’ll see people as they truly are, every relationship in Heaven will be pure.”

Ξ “We’ll love everyone, men and women, but we’ll be in love only with Jesus. We’ll never be tempted to degrade, use, or idolize each other.”

Ξ “In Heaven we’ll be perfectly human, but we’ll still be finite.” Perfection means we won’t be “diseased or crippled” but that “doesn’t mean” we “won’t have limits.”

Ξ “Our greatest deliverance in Heaven will be from ourselves. Our deceit, corruption, self-righteousness, self-sufficiency, hypocrisy – all will be forever gone.”

Chapter 32 Knowledge

 Once we’re resurrected, “We’ll at last be able to see eternal realities once invisible to us (2 Corinthians 4:18).”

∴ “The point of comparing our knowing to God’s knowing is that we’ll know “fully” in the sense of accurately but not exhaustively.” We won’t know everything – only God knows everything.

We will learn in Heaven (Ephesians 2:6-7).

In Heaven, “We will be individuals, each with our own memories and God-given gifts. . . Remember the doctrine of continuity: What we learn here carries over after death.”

“We will find in Heaven a continual progression of stimulating discovery and fresh learning as we keep grasping more of God.”

Chapter 33 Good Stuff

We’ll rest in Heaven. “Rest is good. So good that God built it into his creation and his law.”

Unlike work on this present earth, concerning whether or not we’ll work in Heaven: “. . . On the New Earth work will be redeemed and transformed into what God intended: “No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him” (Revelation 22:3). Serve is a verb. Servants are people who are active and occupied, carrying out tasks.”

Like Jesus has work “‘to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work'” (John 4:34), “We’ll also have work to do, satisfying and enriching work that we can’t wait to get back to, work that’ll never be drudgery. God is the primary worker, and as his image-bearers, we’re made to work. We create, accomplish, set goals, and fulfill them – to God’s glory.”

“Since work began before sin and the Curse, and since God, who is without sin, is a worker, we should assume human beings will work on the New Earth. . . But we don’t need to just assume this. Scripture directly tells us. . . (Matthew 25:23, NKJV).”

“What will we do for eternity to glorify God? We’ll exercise dominion over the earth, demonstrating God’s creativity and ingenuity as his image-bearers, producing Christ-exalting culture.”

 “Incredible as it seems, Jesus desires our company. He’s preparing us a place in Heaven.”

Chapter 34 Wisdom

 Δ “Christ is Heaven’s center of gravity, but we don’t diminish his importance by enjoying natural wonders, angels, or people. On the contrary, we’ll exalt him and draw closer to him as we enjoy all he created.”

 Δ “Think of it – God was with Adam in the Garden, yet God said that wasn’t good enough. (Genesis 2:18 says, “The Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.””) God designed us to need each other.”

 Δ “We will never experience any conflict between worshiping God himself and enjoying God’s people. Deep and satisfying human relationships will be among God’s greatest gifts . . . One of the highest ways we love God is by loving people.” The “greatest commandment” is to “love God,” but the second is to “love our neighbor” (Matthew 22:37-39).”

Δ “The spiritual-sounding “I will love only God and no one else” is not only unspiritual; it’s impossible. For if we don’t love people, who are created in God’s image, we can’t love God.”

Δ “Paul sees no contradiction in referring to both Christ and his friends as his hope and joy and crown in Heaven (1 Thessalonians 2:19-20).”

Δ “Our source of comfort isn’t only that we’ll be with the Lord in Heaven but also that we’ll be with each other.”

 Δ  As far as what we will remember once we leave this earth & go to Heaven, “Seeing those scars” on Jesus’ hands and feet (John 20:24-29) “in Heaven will always remind us that our sins nailed Jesus to the cross. Heaven’s happiness won’t be dependent on our ignorance of what happened on Earth. Rather, it will be enhanced by our informed appreciation of God’s glorious grace and justice as we grasp what really happened here. . . God’s acts of sovereign faithful grace will never be erased from our minds. Heaven’s happiness will be dependent not on our ignorance but on our perspective. We’ll see and know as never before.”

 Δ Funny Question: “When asked if we would recognize friends in Heaven, George MacDonald responded, “Shall we be greater fools in Paradise than we are here?””

Chapter 35 Material 

¶ “Heaven won’t be without families but will be one big family, in which all family members are friends and all friends are family members. We’ll have family relationships with people who were our blood family on Earth. But we’ll also have family relationships with our friends, both old and new.”

¶ “We can’t take material things with us when we die, but we do take our friendships to Heaven, and one day they’ll be renewed.”

¶ “In Heaven neither we nor our family members will cause pain. Our relationships will be harmonious – what we’ve longed for.”

¶ “Earthly marriage is a shadow, a copy, an echo of the true and ultimate marriage” where we will be one with Christ.

¶ “Jesus said the institution of human marriage would end, having fulfilled its purpose. But he never hinted that deep relationships between married people would end.”

¶ “The notion that relationships with family and friends will be lost in Heaven, though common, is unbiblical. It denies the clear doctrine of continuity between this life and the next and suggests our earthly lives and relationships have no eternal consequence. It completely contradicts Paul’s intense anticipation of being with the Thessalonians and his encouraging them to look forward to rejoining their loved ones in Heaven.”

¶ “Because we’re told that humans won’t be married to each other, and sex is intended for marriage, then logically we won’t be engaging in sex.”

¶ “Someone wrote, “What will fill the void of marital intimacy in Heaven?” There will be no void. We’ll have greater marital intimacy with Jesus than we ever had in the best earthly marriages.”

¶ “Just because we’ll be sinless doesn’t mean we won’t be drawn to certain people more than others. We’ll like everyone, but we’ll be closer to some than others.” Jesus also was closer to some than others: including being closer to “Peter, James and John than to the rest of the Twelve” disciples; his friends Lazarus and Martha; and Jesus was “closer still to their sister Mary.”

¶ “On the New Earth we’ll experience the joy of familiarity in old relationships and the joy of discovery in new ones. . . As we find joy in each other, we’ll find joy in” God. “No human relationships will overshadow our relationship with God. All will serve to enhance it.”

Chapter 36 Goodness

⊕ “Of this we may be absolutely certain: Hell will have no power over Heaven; none of Hell’s misery will ever veto any of Heaven’s joy.” God promises this in Revelation 21:4.

⊕ As far as discussing or debating our differing tastes, that author Randy Alcorn speculates we’ll “likely have” in Heaven, such as in “food and clothes and music and thousands of other things”: “Of course, there will be no personal attacks, no ill-informed biases, and no prideful refusal to grant a valid point . . . Our beliefs can be accurate but incomplete, since we’ll not be omniscient. . . Not all disagreement is rooted in sin.”

⊕ “Even though Christ’s insights would be absolutely accurate, that doesn’t mean we’ll always fully understand them. God has made us learners. That’s part of being finite.”

⊕ “In a perfect world, why would there be a need for authority? Because that’s the way God has made us. He’s the ultimate authority, but he delegates authority to mankind. It’s not sin that necessitates authority, it’s simply God’s design, existing first within his triune bring (John 8:28).”

⊕ “Though we go to the present Heaven one at a time as we die, all of us will be charter citizens of the New Earth. We’ll be resurrected together and set foot on the New Earth together. We’ll discover what no one else has ever seen. We’ll share our discoveries together. . . “

Chapter 37 Interesting Fact

¤ In Revelation 2:17 Jesus says, “. . . I will also give that person a white stone with a new name written on it, known only to the one who receives it.”

Chapter 38 Goodness

◊ “On the New Earth, all we propose to do will be for God’s glory and our good. God will no longer need to protect us from ourselves. We will never unite to destroy and exploit, only to create and enhance.”

◊ Author Randy Alcorn’s “understanding of Scripture suggests” – SUGGESTS, keep in mind – “that the New Earth will include not only resurrected geographical locations but also resurrected cultures.”

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