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Featured Most Christians have no concept of what Heaven is really like

Discussion in 'Controversial Christian Theology' started by GirdYourLoins, Oct 15, 2020 at 3:43 AM.

  1. GirdYourLoins

    GirdYourLoins Well-Known Member

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    Over the last couple of weeks there have been a couple of threads that have left me with the impression of the title of this post. It seems to me that people really do not know what to expect when in heaven. I've just done a reply to one but would like to do a thread based purely on what peoples expectations of heaven are. In that post I linked the article below and put in these quotes from it which really highlight my views on what to expect in heaven. I really think heaven is far more amazing than most Christians think and there is a real lack the concept of what it is like.
    "and as startling as the impact of first love."
    "I understood that they made the music because they could not contain it. It was the sound of sheer joy."
    "filled to overflowing with indescribable, unconditional love."
    (I will just add that some of this does appear to be metaphorical, such as the speck on a wing a of a butterfly)

    What heaven's really like - by a leading brain surgeon who says he's been there: Read his testimony before you scoff...it might just shake your beliefs | Daily Mail Online

    So what I want to ask is have you ever done any study on what heaven is like, have you had any revelation of it and whatever the answer to these what do you actually expect heaven to be like?
     
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  2. Guojing

    Guojing Well-Known Member

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    Its God's will.

    Paul was caught up in the 3rd heaven and he was prevented by God from revealing anything he saw to us, and God even gave him a thorn in the flesh to keep him from being too proud of that revelation.

    2 Corinthians 12 has the details. I certainly think it would have done a lot for our faith on Earth if Paul did reveal more details but who am I to question God there?
     
  3. GirdYourLoins

    GirdYourLoins Well-Known Member

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    Paul already had a calling that saw him being influential for God across much of the world. He had the thorn in the flesh and suffered many, many hardships in his life including being imprisoned and shipwrecked. God knows us all perfectly and Paul clearly had a calling and personality that could ave lead to him becoming proud. There are plenty of other people who dont have such a special calling who have spoken of their visiting heaven. While I would certainly agree we should not question God (but being human we do at times) it was not for Paul to reveal what heaven is like, but there are people God has revealed it to that I believe. The link I provided being just one.
     
  4. NBB

    NBB Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Just being with the Holy spirit in his 'full' without any 'seeing through mirrors' is awesome enough for an eternity, then you can live in a world without any suffering and evil...
     
  5. Tony B

    Tony B Active Member

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    I don't care what it is like, I'll just be so chuffed to be there, knowing that I don't deserve it. To be with my Creator will be enough for me, even if that happened to be in the middle of a desert!
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2020 at 12:29 PM
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  6. Michael Collum

    Michael Collum Everything began with a voice, use yours Supporter

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    The word heaven is the sky, the atmosphere, the thin air.

    You cannot enter the kingdom of the thin air unless you are born again by the Holy Wind - because as you are, you are of the earth and are incompatible.

    Since our senses experience an earth like existence, the kingdom of Heaven will be so contrarily opposite of this.

    Why not let it be a surprise?
     
  7. GirdYourLoins

    GirdYourLoins Well-Known Member

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    For me, I had a revelation (incomparably small compared to the guy in the link I gave) of what we had to look forward to at a time I was suffering from quite severe depression (that I now know was caused by a food intolerance) and that was enough to change my life. Knowing what we have to look forward to makes my suffering in this life more bearable and has helped me be a better Christian.
     
  8. Guojing

    Guojing Well-Known Member

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    interesting, if paul tells us God did not allow him to reveal what heaven was like in the scripture, you think God Would allow others to reveal that same secret?
     
  9. Michael Collum

    Michael Collum Everything began with a voice, use yours Supporter

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    Hope does that.
     
  10. GirdYourLoins

    GirdYourLoins Well-Known Member

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    We all have different callings. Paul's was to preach the gospel. As you said God gave Paul a thorn in the flesh to prevent him, Paul, from becoming proud. Does God give everyone a thorn in the flesh? Does God give everyone the same calling? It was not for Paul to reveal, but there are scriptures that do reveal elements of heaven. I take the view that if God has a chosen servant for a specific job, any job, He will use that person for it. David was prevented from building the temple. Does that mean everyone was prevented from building the temple? No, Soloman built it. It was Gods plan that His chosen person would fulfill His plan. In the same way I see this as just being someone else's calling.
     
  11. Dave G.

    Dave G. Well-Known Member

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    The experience the doctor shared is along the lines of a new age view of a heavenly universe. That after life has been mentioned before by others having short term death experiences. Still others speak of entities and coming before a big light kind of scenario. My mother died on a hospital slab for a time and she explained being in a place she assumed to be heaven with beautiful meadows of lush greens and spring water creeks and past loved ones being there but being told to go back because it was not her time yet. Upon coming back to the hospital room her body was in she watched people working on her body and then she re entered. She gave that account more than once and stated she knew she had to return to her body but wanted to stay where she had gone to. There was no pain or suffering but total peace.

    In the end we really don't know what these experiences are. They seem to have some common themes of a couple of different types but include peace or serenity in either case. Also love. We don't know but to each one who has an experience like this, they are convinced they were in heaven.

    I saw a video with a preacher who had one of these experiences and it's one that was different from others I've heard which seem to have the more common them. In this though, he found himself in a line of half dozen people lined up to be greeted. Next to them was a steady unending line of people going to hell. As each passed by they cursed God. This preacher came before Jesus. He said the power emitting from Him was such to make him want to just curl up on the floor but he was told to stand and face the Lord. Jesus said who the man was, named him among the clergy. His only question to this man was if he had learned to love and the man replied yes. And Jesus told him then to return and to preach on love, tell them about love. And so he returned, he pleaded not to have to return, he said to the Lord it's terrible down there. I don't recall if there was a reply to that.

    I've had enough experiences right here on earth in the natural state of man to not doubt anything is possible. But again till we go we simply don't know how it will be there.
     
  12. Albion

    Albion Facilitator

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    IMO you got it right in that sentence. Indeed, we cannot know while we are in this physical life.

    What we have been told in God word is that it's wonderful. Therefore, I conclude that it will be much more than anything we could have imagined now, basing our imagination upon good things around us here.

    Moreover, there's nothing wrong with thinking of it this way.
     
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  13. Jesus is YHWH

    Jesus is YHWH my Lord and my God ! Supporter

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    Revelation chapters 21-22 give a detailed description of heaven.

    A New Heaven and a New Earth

    Revelation 21
    Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. 2 I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. 4 ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”

    5 He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”

    6 He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life. 7 Those who are victorious will inherit all this, and I will be their God and they will be my children. 8 But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars—they will be consigned to the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.”

    The New Jerusalem, the Bride of the Lamb
    9 One of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues came and said to me, “Come, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb.” 10 And he carried me away in the Spirit to a mountain great and high, and showed me the Holy City, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God. 11 It shone with the glory of God, and its brilliance was like that of a very precious jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal. 12 It had a great, high wall with twelve gates, and with twelve angels at the gates. On the gates were written the names of the twelve tribes of Israel. 13 There were three gates on the east, three on the north, three on the south and three on the west. 14 The wall of the city had twelve foundations, and on them were the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

    15 The angel who talked with me had a measuring rod of gold to measure the city, its gates and its walls. 16 The city was laid out like a square, as long as it was wide. He measured the city with the rod and found it to be 12,000 stadia in length, and as wide and high as it is long. 17 The angel measured the wall using human measurement, and it was 144 cubits thick. 18 The wall was made of jasper, and the city of pure gold, as pure as glass. 19 The foundations of the city walls were decorated with every kind of precious stone. The first foundation was jasper, the second sapphire, the third agate, the fourth emerald, 20 the fifth onyx, the sixth ruby, the seventh chrysolite, the eighth beryl, the ninth topaz, the tenth turquoise, the eleventh jacinth, and the twelfth amethyst. 21 The twelve gates were twelve pearls, each gate made of a single pearl. The great street of the city was of gold, as pure as transparent glass.

    22 I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. 23 The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp. 24 The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it. 25 On no day will its gates ever be shut, for there will be no night there. 26 The glory and honor of the nations will be brought into it. 27 Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life.

    Revelation 22
    Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb 2 down the middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. 3 No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him. 4 They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. 5 There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign for ever and ever.

    hope this helps !!!
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2020 at 8:42 AM
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  14. GirdYourLoins

    GirdYourLoins Well-Known Member

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    There are some people who claim to have experienced heaven, there are some people who claim to have experienced hell and there are some people who are given a message such as appears to be this preacher that doesnt fit either.
     
  15. GirdYourLoins

    GirdYourLoins Well-Known Member

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    Thats the new heaven after the current heaven had passed away. And its more a physical description. For me the biggest thing about heaven will be being in the presence of God, and as the guy in the link I gave said "overflowing with indescribable, unconditional love".
     
  16. Jesus is YHWH

    Jesus is YHWH my Lord and my God ! Supporter

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    Read Revelation chapters 4-5

    The Throne in Heaven

    Revelation 4
    After this I looked, and there before me was a door standing open in heaven. And the voice I had first heard speaking to me like a trumpet said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after this.” 2 At once I was in the Spirit, and there before me was a throne in heaven with someone sitting on it. 3 And the one who sat there had the appearance of jasper and ruby. A rainbow that shone like an emerald encircled the throne. 4 Surrounding the throne were twenty-four other thrones, and seated on them were twenty-four elders. They were dressed in white and had crowns of gold on their heads. 5 From the throne came flashes of lightning, rumblings and peals of thunder. In front of the throne, seven lamps were blazing. These are the seven spirits of God. 6 Also in front of the throne there was what looked like a sea of glass, clear as crystal.

    In the center, around the throne, were four living creatures, and they were covered with eyes, in front and in back. 7 The first living creature was like a lion, the second was like an ox, the third had a face like a man, the fourth was like a flying eagle. 8 Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under its wings. Day and night they never stop saying:

    “‘Holy, holy, holy

    is the Lord God Almighty,’

    who was, and is, and is to come.”

    9 Whenever the living creatures give glory, honor and thanks to him who sits on the throne and who lives for ever and ever, 10 the twenty-four elders fall down before him who sits on the throne and worship him who lives for ever and ever. They lay their crowns before the throne and say:

    11 “You are worthy, our Lord and God,
    to receive glory and honor and power,
    for you created all things,
    and by your will they were created
    and have their being.”

    The Scroll and the Lamb

    Revelation 5
    Then I saw in the right hand of him who sat on the throne a scroll with writing on both sides and sealed with seven seals. 2 And I saw a mighty angel proclaiming in a loud voice, “Who is worthy to break the seals and open the scroll?” 3 But no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth could open the scroll or even look inside it. 4 I wept and wept because no one was found who was worthy to open the scroll or look inside. 5 Then one of the elders said to me, “Do not weep! See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has triumphed. He is able to open the scroll and its seven seals.”

    6 Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing at the center of the throne, encircled by the four living creatures and the elders. The Lamb had seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth. 7 He went and took the scroll from the right hand of him who sat on the throne. 8 And when he had taken it, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb. Each one had a harp and they were holding golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of God’s people. 9 And they sang a new song, saying:

    “You are worthy to take the scroll
    and to open its seals,
    because you were slain,
    and with your blood you purchased for God
    persons from every tribe and language and people and nation.
    10 You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God,
    and they will reign on the earth.”

    11 Then I looked and heard the voice of many angels, numbering thousands upon thousands, and ten thousand times ten thousand. They encircled the throne and the living creatures and the elders. 12 In a loud voice they were saying:

    “Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain,
    to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength
    and honor and glory and praise!”

    13 Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, saying:

    “To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb
    be praise and honor and glory and power,
    for ever and ever!”

    14 The four living creatures said, “Amen,” and the elders fell down and worshiped.
     
  17. NerdGirl123

    NerdGirl123 A Beautiful Mess

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    Well, we're given some clues throughout Scripture.

    1. We have the description of the Holy City, right down to its size and the jewels and materials crafted into its gates and walls and streets (Rev 21:9-21). I'd post it here but it's a long passage.

    2. We know that there will be a new earth, too! (Rev: 21:1) Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea.

    3. I think it's really curious that the sea/ocean will not exist anymore, if you take this verse literally. There may no longer be a sun or moon, though this verse doesn't specifically say that, only that they won't be needed to light the city: (Rev 21:23) The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp.

    I also get far more excited at the idea of a new earth than I do about the Holy City, because I love nature and wildlife and solitude. And the thought of having a whole new planet to explore and enjoy, without any of the curses of sin (thorns, stinging insects, dangerous wild animals, sunburn) just sounds so wonderful! And even more wonderful is that we'll be communing with the Lord the whole time. Even if I'm wandering over some far-off mountain, I'll never feel alone or away from God.

    4. We also know that there will be feasting and drinking in Heaven! Woohoo! (Matthew 8:11)
    I say to you that many will come from the east and the west, and will take their places at the feast with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven.

    5. No one will be married or get married. There won't be any need for it. All of our longings for love and companionship and intimacy will be fulfilled. (Matthew 22:30) At the resurrection people will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will be like the angels in heaven.

    6. While we are assured that our earthly lives will be but a distant memory, and all of our tears will be wiped away by Jesus Himself, I don't think we're going to lose our personalities in Heaven, or that we'll become some conglomerate, Borg-like mass of consciousness. There are several verses where individuals are named after they've died and gone to Heaven (Matthew 17:2-4) There he was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as the light. 3 Just then there appeared before them Moses and Elijah, talking with Jesus. 4 Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good for us to be here. If you wish, I will put up three shelters—one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.” And I'm honestly glad about this one, because the thought that I'll somehow FORGET who I am, or not be MYSELF anymore, is terrifying to me.

    7. We won't be idle! The long-sustained image of people just sitting or standing around, smiling and doing nothing but singing, for endless millenia...does not sound appealing to me! We know that at least some Christians (this verse seems to indicate only those who endured the last tribulation and died for their faith) are going to reign with God (Rev 20: 4-6). Reigning is work! And if we think back to the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve weren't idle. They tended the garden and the animals. The work was pleasant, though. Not back-breaking, sweaty labor, but rewarding, enjoyable, useful work, as God intended it to be. I imagine there will be endless things for us to do, whether it be a role we're given or a choice we can make ourselves. I like to imagine that the Holy City has vast, vast libraries, where all the answers to all the mysteries of the universe can be researched. And even if you study for ten thousand years, there will always be more to study!

    8. The last one that comes to mind is that...whatever is most delightful and pleasurable for us, will be ours, forever. This remains very vague, perhaps because what delights one soul may not delight another. Sounds pretty nice to me :) (Psalm 16:11) You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.
     
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  18. NerdGirl123

    NerdGirl123 A Beautiful Mess

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    "Chuffed" :D I love that!
     
  19. Jesus is YHWH

    Jesus is YHWH my Lord and my God ! Supporter

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    Excellent !!!!!
     
  20. Kenny'sID

    Kenny'sID Well-Known Member Supporter

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