PASSPORT TO HEAVEN
A passport is a very important document if you want to travel from one country to another. It’s a command from one country’s government to the country you want to visit, to allow you to enter its territory and look after you while you are there. It’s almost impossible to enter a foreign country without a valid passport.
When you arrive in the foreign country you line up at the immigration control to have your passport examined and sometimes the official will check on a list to see if your name is someone who the country doesn’t want. Some countries have regulations about how long a person can stay in their country and you have to apply to that government for a visa telling them the purpose of your visit and how you’re going to support yourself while you’re there. They don’t want you to arrive in their country and run out of money.
I had to go to a Middle East country on business and because the time was short it was arranged that my visa would be awaiting my arrival at the airport. When I arrived I told the official my story but he could find no trace of my visa. I looked down the list of names beginning with ’B’ to make sure, but no, it wasn’t there. I prayed for guidance and it came to me that perhaps it was under my Christian name, under ’O’, and what a relief to find it was there!
But the best part of travelling abroad is coming home again. Here there’s no problem. You’re a citizen and you go to a special desk for holders of your country’s passports and you’re waved straight through because you belong there.
Now the reason I’ve told you about the passport is to show you that our life on Earth is a journey to another life - the one that the spirit and soul have after our body dies. The Lord Jesus came from that life to the Earth to make it possible for us to go to heaven. He came to overcome evil and did so by dying on the Cross and rising again. He said that, "if you believe in me you will share my life for ever" (John 6:40; 11:26). That belief, that faith in Jesus, is the only sure passport to heaven.
The book of the Revelation makes it clear that heaven will be open only for "those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life (21:27). That’s the document in which we must be sure we have are names inscribed. Jesus illustrated this in the Parable of the Sheep and the Goats (Matt 25:21-46). He looks forward in time to the day of judgement when "He will separate the people one from another", the righteous from all others.
If you’re travelling to a foreign country, don’t forget your passport, but most of all, don’t forget to trust in Jesus as your passport to heaven.