Whatever Happened to Heaven?

There will be the unending enjoyment of eternal life lived in the perfect union of a spiritual body and a purified soul.  Heaven is often thought of as a place of indescribable joy, and rightly so.  In the words of David’s testimony, “Thou wilt make known to me the path of
life; In Thy presence is fulness of joy; In Thy right hand there are pleasures forever” (Ps. 16: 11).  In the parable of the talents, faithful stewards are told, “Enter into the joy of
your master” (Matt. 25:21).  Jude speaks of believers being presented before God’s presence “with great joy” (Jude 24).  John assures believers that in heaven “there shall no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away” (Rev. 21:4).  That being so, we can hardly accuse Thomas Brooks of hyperbole when he writes, “If all the earth were paper, and all the plants of the earth were pens, and all the sea were ink, and if every man, woman and child had the pen of a ready writer, yet were they not able to
express the thousandth part of those joys that saints shall have in heaven….”

Heaven is not man-centered, but God-centered.  Whatever the diversity of our experiences in heaven, they will all be suffused with a sense of being intimately at home with our Father and Savior.  As Bruce Milne puts it, “We may be confident that the crowning wonder of our experience in the heavenly realm will be the endless exploration of that unutterable beauty, majesty, love, holiness, power, joy and grace which is God himself.” Put more succinctly, we will never come to an end of exploring the wonders of our glorious God.

John Blanchard, Reformation and Revivial,  Volume 6,  Number 2, Spring 1997.

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