As Christians, we look towards heaven as the place we go when we die. But where is it? What’s it like? And what will we be like? To complicate matters, there are three time stages of heaven. The present heaven, the coming 1000 year kingdom on earth, and the future new heaven.
Notes and Outline
Where Is Heaven?
Jesus never said we go to heaven, rather that we go through Him to the Father, or that He gives us eternal life, or that wherever he is, there we will be.
Outline of the Present Heaven
Where is it? A. It’s in the third Heaven where God lives with Jesus at His right hand. The bible mentions three heavens. It means, the atmosphere around our earth, space, and the 3rd heaven where God resides.
- 2 Cor 12:2-4 Paul’s testimony
- It is a spiritual realm with physical characteristics; like earth but not exactly Rev 1:19; 4:1; 5:1,8,11,13; 10:9,10
- God resides in the temple there Rev 11:19; 3:12; 7:15; 14:15-17; 15:5-8; 16:1,17; The ark of the covenant is/will be there Rev 11:19 Jesus always referred to His Father who is in heaven.
- The human body cannot exist there. Has to die before we go there.
- Our spirit goes there upon death Eccl. 12:7; Psalm 146:4; 104:29
- We are given some type of spirit body in the nature of angels, as demonstrated at the transfiguration Matt 17:2 and the Appearance Luke 24:39 and the Ascension Acts 1:9; but isn’t detailed in Scripture and isn’t permanent, facilitates us living in the spiritual realm before we return to the physical realm
- Unknown how far away this spiritual realm is
- In this present heaven we are fully conscious and there are physical elements we are familiar with as revealed in Luke 16:9 and many other places throughout the bible.
- God departs from the temple He is residing in, takes up new dwelling in new Jerusalem Rev 21:3
- Not permanent. This heaven will ‘pass away’ when the new heaven is created Zech 2:10-12; Isa 65:17; Rev 21:22
WHY IS IT IMPORTANT TO STUDY ABOUT HEAVEN?
- Jesus said, signs will inform us, look to the sky for His return, live for that day - use our talents.
- Answers the q. of ‘what happens when we die’
- Gives us hope in this life, helps understand eternal life
- Exposes Truth rather than legend, cancels fear
- Heaven Is our eternal home
- Jesus is evidence of the permanency of the physical realm
- Inspires and directs us how to live now esp. in relationships, work, and sleep
- We don’t fear hell enough because we don’t ave a full picture of heaven
- Inspires & directs us what to spend our time on now
- We truly don’t want heaven bad enough
- Inspires us to share the gospel with loved ones