- Original Teaching: When We Get to Heaven
- Date: July 18, 2010
- Location: Calvary Temple in Sterling, VA
- Teacher: Pastor Forbe Carlson
- Scripture: “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on thing above, not on things on the earth.” Colossians 3:1-2
- By: Jason Felton
Since I’ve been blogging over the past year, we’ve covered a number of subjects regarding practical Christian living and what we need to do to stand in the intense warfare we are involved in. So what is it we are fighting for? What’s the end game? Well we are fighting for our lives and where we are going to spend eternity. Heaven and Hell are very real. We talked about the reality of Hell about a year ago. Today we want to talk about the reality of Heaven and what awaits those who endure to the end. Spoiler Alert! It’s greater than anything you can imagine!
The sad thing is Heaven has become an afterthought in Christianity because our focus has been so intent on this earth. Oh, you hear references to our mansion in the sky or the sweet by and by, but you hear very little talk about the reality of Heaven. Everything spoken from the pulpit today in most churches is how you can prosper here on earth. It’s about how the Lord will bless you in this temporal realm. And while the Lord does bless those that bless Him, He’s not really caught up with your temporal existence and you shouldn’t be either. Heaven should be the focus and joy of the life of the believer! “Oh I can’t wait to get Heaven! There’s going to be no more death or sickness. There will be a big feast! I’m going to get to a new mansion and see my loved ones who have gone home to be with the Lord.” Yes, all those things are true, and it is what the Lord has promised us! But there are 3 things we want to look at that makes Heaven even greater than that.
Our first and foremost focal point when thinking about Heaven is the excitement of seeing Jesus! If you read through the book of Revelation, you will see countless references to Jesus and the endless praise and worship that is given to Him. If that is the main focus of those who are the current citizens of Heaven, then it certainly should be ours, as the future citizens of Heaven. Jesus is the reason you can look forward to Heaven in the first place. If it wasn’t for His obedience to die on the cross for your sins, Heaven wouldn’t even be an option. You would be damned to a Devil’s Hell for all of eternity. Aren’t you thankful that, that’s not the case! What a joy it will be in Heaven to be able to see Jesus and thank Him face to face for what He has done for us. When we get to Heaven we won’t be able to get enough of Jesus! We will be with Him for eternity and have eternity to worship and praise His holy name!
That brings us to our second point. Another thing you can get excited about when thinking about Heaven is worship. A lot of us, when we think about Heaven, picture us kicking back and relaxing. I finished the race, and now it’s time to chill in my lounge chair by the crystal sea. The reality is, you won’t really care about those things. What you will care about is worshiping the guy we were talking about in point number one. You won’t be able to get enough of Jesus! You will be so caught up in His presence that nothing else will matter! When you get to Heaven you will be able to express pure worship to Him without any reservation, and you will never grow weary of doing so. Just think about that. Think about those times you have had even here on earth when you are totally caught up in His presence. What peace and absolute joy there is when we have those times. It seems like time stands still and you don’t ever want to leave. Well you will have that for all of eternity. What a blessing! What an incredible thing we have to look forward to!
The last thing point I want to talk about today (and this is an important one) when thinking of Heaven is the Lamb’s book of life. The book of life is referenced a few times throughout the scriptures. In fact, in Luke 10 Jesus said, “Don’t rejoice because the spirits are subject to you. Rejoice because your names are written in Heaven.” This should be something that excites us. Greater than all the things He has blessed you with should be the fact that your name is written in this book! Because if your name is not found in this book you will be cast into the lake of fire (Revelation 20:15). That should be a sobering thought to you! The fact of the matter is we haven’t finished this race yet. Even though you may be a Christian, you still have daily choices to make that determine where you will end up. The sad thing is many people in this day and age are having their names blotted out of this book because they are treasuring the things of the earth.
Philippians 4:20 says, “For our conversation is in Heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ.” This word conversation can also be interpreted citizenship. Our citizenship should be in Heaven. We need to be constantly reminded of this because everything on this earth is telling us otherwise. It’s telling us we need to get bigger houses, drive nicer cars, go on more vacations. The world is telling us (even professed Christianity) to do whatever it takes to make your life here on earth as comfortable and easy as possible. That’s not the life of a true believer! The heroes of faith looked for a city whose builder and maker was God and for us there is a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory (2 Corinthians 4:17). We need to be reminded daily of where our citizenship truly is!
So as we end for today, what about you? Do you yearn for Heaven? Do you value your citizenship in the kingdom of God? We all know the right answers and most would say yes, but what does your life say? Does your life reflect what you would probably answer, or have you taken your citizenship for granted? We all say we love Jesus and can’t wait to see Him, but is He your passion? Do you truly treasure Him above everything else? If we’re honest with ourselves, we’ll realize that we are far more earthly minded then we think! We say all the right things, but our feet are firmly planted here on this earth. Brothers and sisters there are some great things that await us in eternity, and we’ve looked at three very important ones today. But before we can become citizens of the kingdom of Heaven in eternity, we must become citizens of the kingdom of Heaven here on this earth. We need to be totally caught up with Him now so we can spend eternity in His presence later! So get your mind off the temporal and onto the eternal. Jesus is coming back soon and He’s looking for a bride that’s consumed with Him!