Summary: Every believer has the promised hope of living forever in Heaven. “Since we have been raised to new life with Christ, we should set our sights on the realities of heaven and let heaven fill our thoughts.”
REVELATION 2012: #10 – THE HOPE OF HEAVEN
INTRO TO TOPIC:
Before we talk about what Heaven is like, let’s talk about what Heaven is NOT like:
It’s not a place in the clouds populated by little naked fat babies with wings, people in white dresses playing harps and eating Philly Cream Cheese!
“1 Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. 2 In My Father's house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. 4 And where I go you know, and the way you know." 5 Thomas said to Him, "Lord, we do not know where You are going, and how can we know the way?" 6 Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” (John 14:1-6).
QUOTE: “If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world.” (C.S. Lewis).
THE BIG IDEA: Every believer has the promised hope of living forever in Heaven. “Since we have been raised to new life with Christ, we should set our sights on the realities of heaven and let heaven fill our thoughts.” (Col. 3:1-2, NLT).
1. THE HOLY CITY: NEW JERUSALEM: Revelation 21
“Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea. (v. 1).
• Sea is what separates people and nations. No more sea/separation in Heaven.
Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. (v. 2).
• Heaven is built by God and it comes down to us.
And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, "Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away." Then He who sat on the throne said, "Behold, I make all things new." And He said to me, "Write, for these words are true and faithful." And He said to me, "It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. I will give of the fountain of the water of life freely to him who thirsts.” (v. 3-6).
• Believers will live together with God, enjoying sweet fellowship with Him, face to face.
• In Heaven, God will wipe away every tear from our eyes.
• There will be no more sorrow, crying or death. Death was never meant to be a part of life.
• Now we cry when people we love die. God says, “I will make all things NEW!”
• No more pain. Now we experience pain and suffering, the consequences of sin.
• People in the world drink from the toilet of religion or perversion.
• God promises to let us drink of the fountain of the water of life freely = satisfaction.
“He who overcomes shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be My son.
• Those who overcome sin are those who will inherit the Kingdom.
But the cowardly (unfaithful), unbelieving, abominable (sinful), murderers, sexually immoral (all sex outside of marriage is sin), sorcerers (magic, astrology, witchcraft and drug use), idolaters (worship anything other than Jesus), and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.” (v. 7-8).
• Does this mean that anyone who has ever told a lie will not go to Heaven? No.
• This is referring to those who live habitually in a lifestyle of sin and rebellion.
• Everyone lives forever, it’s just a matter of geography – Heaven or hell.
“9 Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls filled with the seven last plagues came to me and talked with me, saying, "Come, I will show you the bride, the Lamb's wife." 10 And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me the great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, 11 having the glory of God. Her light was like a most precious stone, like a jasper stone, clear as crystal. 12 Also she had a great and high wall with twelve gates, and twelve angels at the gates, and names written on them, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel: 13 three gates on the east, three gates on the north, three gates on the south, and three gates on the west. 14 Now the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and on them were the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb. 15 And he who talked with me had a gold reed to measure the city, its gates, and its wall. 16 The city is laid out as a square; its length is as great as its breadth. And he measured the city with the reed: twelve thousand furlongs. Its length, breadth, and height are equal. 17 Then he measured its wall: one hundred and forty-four cubits, according to the measure of a man, that is, of an angel. 18 The construction of its wall was of jasper; and the city was pure gold, like clear glass. 19 The foundations of the wall of the city were adorned with all kinds of precious stones: the first foundation was jasper, the second sapphire, the third chalcedony, the fourth emerald, 20 the fifth sardonyx, the sixth sardius, the seventh chrysolite, the eighth beryl, the ninth topaz, the tenth chrysoprase, the eleventh jacinth, and the twelfth amethyst. 21 The twelve gates were twelve pearls: each individual gate was of one pearl. And the street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass. 22 But I saw no temple in it, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. 23 The city had no need of the sun or of the moon to shine in it, for the glory of God illuminated it. The Lamb is its light. 24 And the nations of those who are saved shall walk in its light, and the kings of the earth bring their glory and honor into it. 25 Its gates shall not be shut at all by day (there shall be no night there). 26 And they shall bring the glory and the honor of the nations into it. 27 But there shall by no means enter it anything that defiles, or causes an abomination or a lie, but only those who are written in the Lamb's Book of Life.” (Rev. 21:9-27).