to go to
(It's not what you
think it is)
Stop most religious people on the street and ask them if they want to go to Heaven
and they'll most likely say YES. What person in their right mind would not want to
spend eternity in the joyful state of bliss known as Heaven.
However, before anyone packs their bags and gets all fired up about going to Heaven, let's
look at TWO of the many things the Bible says people will do there: "...And after these
things I heard a great voice of MUCH PEOPLE IN HEAVEN, saying, ALLELUIA;
Salvation, and glory, and honour, and power, unto the Lord OUR GOD." Rev. 19:1
"...And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall
be in it; and HIS SERVANTS SHALL SERVE HIM." Rev. 22:3
In Heaven, people will praise, worship, and serve God. In fact, EVERYTHING they DO
will revolve around God. Everything they SEE will come from God. Everything they THINK
will be in accordance with what God wants them to think. Everything they SAY will glorify
God and Him alone. Self-will becomes God's will. Total submission is the norm!
Even those considered "God's chosen," such as Moses, Abraham, Peter, Paul, and John
will submit, humble themselves, and glorify God: "The four and twenty elders fall down
before him that sat on the throne, and worship him that liveth for ever and ever, and
CAST THEIR CROWNS BEFORE THE THRONE, saying, Thou art worthy, O Lord,
to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and FOR THY
PLEASURE they are and were created." Rev. 4:10-11
Notice their acknowledgment of having been created for GOD'S PLEASURE. There will
be no pursuit of self-derived pleasure in Heaven. There will be no drunken parties, dirty
jokes, swearing, one night stands, drugs, orgies, gambling, nor anything else that a lot of
people on earth consider fun. The Bible is very clear about this:
"Know ye not that the unrighteous SHALL NOT inherit the kingdom of God? Be not
deceived: neither FORNICATORS, nor idolaters, NOR ADULTERERS, nor effeminate,
nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, NOR COVETOUS, NOR
DRUNKARDS, NOR REVILERS, nor extortioners, SHALL INHERIT THE KINGDOM
OF GOD." 1 Cor. 6:9-10
So this creates a "slight" dilemma for those who want to go to Heaven,
because if their lives don't revolve around God now . . .
. . . What makes them think they will like it in Heaven . . . ?
Maybe they assume that God will be understanding
and accommodate their personal preference.
In other words, they assume that since they're not "the worshiping type," God will not expect it
from them. However, no one in Heaven will be in a position to set their own terms because no one
ARRIVES THERE on their own terms in the first place.
A person gets to Heaven ON GOD'S TERMS; through the death of His Son, Jesus Christ. Jesus
said, "I AM THE WAY, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, BUT BY ME"
(John 14:6). There is simply NO OTHER WAY, apart from trusting Jesus Christ as Saviour, to get
to Heaven. IT'S GOD'S WAY OR NOTHING: "Neither is there salvation in any other: for there
is NONE OTHER NAME under heaven given among men, WHEREBY WE MUST BE
SAVED." Acts 4:12
A person's good deeds or acts of righteousness WILL NOT merit them entrance into Heaven:
"NOT by works of righteousness which WE have done, but ACCORDING TO HIS MERCY HE
SAVED US" (Titus 3:5). That's why WE ALL NEED A SAVIOUR! That's why, "CHRIST DIED
FOR OUR SINS." (1 Cor. 15:3). "And we have seen and do testify that THE FATHER SENT
THE SON TO BE THE SAVIOUR OF THE WORLD." (1 John 4:14). Christ's death and shed
blood ALREADY PAID the way to Heaven.
Therefore, since we have no other alternative but to enter Heaven on God's terms, we are in no
position to tell Him how Heaven should be run. He sets the rules, and if a person is not willing to
submit to His rules, they won't like it in Heaven.
Perhaps some people think that, once in Heaven, they will
grow accustomed to it; they'll grow to like it.
But that's not possible because the submissive attitude we read about earlier of those that will
be in Heaven must come BY NATURE. It is not a learned behavior. It is not a matter of getting
used to it. It comes from a HEART-FELT DESIRE of wanting to serve God. It either comes natural
or it doesn't. The Bible puts it this way: "But it is happened unto them according to the true
proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and THE SOW THAT WAS WASHED TO
HER WALLOWING IN THE MIRE." 2 Pet. 2:22
In other words, learning to like Heaven is as unlikely as washing a pig and expecting him to like
staying clean. It's simply not part of his nature to do so. And if it's not part of a person's
nature to live for God during this lifetime, they'll never "teach themselves" to do it in Heaven.
Perhaps some people assume that they will automatically
be transformed into a submissive creature.
This isn't as strange as it sounds. As a kid, no doubt, you remember an occasional cartoon where
someone dies (a victim of Bugs Bunny perhaps) and ends up in heaven wearing wings and playing
a harp. Now, I know that us adults are more sophisticated than that. However, even in movies
geared toward a "sophisticated" audience, the idea of people dying and THEN being made fit for
heaven is still popular. Remember "It's a Wonderful Life" or "Heaven can Wait"?
Therefore, some people assume (and hope!), that upon death, a transformation will occur that will
make heaven livable for them. However, no such transformation AFTER DEATH will take place.
The Bible says that upon a person's death: "He that is unjust, LET HIM BE UNJUST STILL:
and he which is filthy, LET HIM BE FILTHY STILL: and he that is righteous, let him be
righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still" (Rev. 22:11). Or, to put it another way,
"...in the place where the tree falleth, THERE IT SHALL BE." Eccl. 11:3
If they don't like the idea of bowing before God now, they won't be given the desire to do so in
Heaven. God will not infringe upon someone's freewill. He created us as a free, moral agent and
if someone doesn't want to totally submit to God during this lifetime, God will not program them
to do so once in Heaven.
Therefore, if a person wants to miss Hell and go to Heaven, they must repent and willfully
submit to God NOW. They must have a change of heart DURING THIS LIFETIME. Or as Jesus
Christ put it: THEY MUST BE BORN AGAIN!
Jesus said, "Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be BORN AGAIN [WHILE STILL
ALIVE!], he cannot see the kingdom of God." John 3:3
This life-transforming, spiritual birth, which Jesus calls being born again, PREPARES US FOR
HEAVEN. The person who is born again is, "A NEW CREATURE: old things are passed away;
behold, ALL THINGS ARE BECOME NEW" (2 Cor. 5:17), and that's where the desire to totally
submit to God comes from. But it all must begin with the person WANTING TO BE BORN AGAIN
NOW, DURING THIS LIFETIME!
Anyone can be born again and made fit for Heaven, "if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the
Lord Jesus [i.e. REPENT], and shalt believe in thine heart [i.e. TRUST] that God hath raised him
from the dead, THOU SHALT BE SAVED." Rom. 10:9
If you'd like to learn more about this topic or any one of the many other subjects the Bible
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