"I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life"
Father God, thank you for the love of the truth you have given me. Please bless me with the wisdom, knowledge and discernment needed to always present the truth in an attitude of grace and love. Use this blog and Northwoods Ministries for your glory. Help us all to read and to study Your Word without preconceived notions, but rather, let scripture interpret scripture in the presence of the Holy Spirit. All praise to our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
Please note: All my writings and comments appear in bold italics in this colour
Friday, October 21, 2011
This is an excerpt from a presentation I made to a senior's lunch at The Park Church, Sherwood Park, AB, on Oct 20, 2011.
Do you think much about Heaven? We don’t really know much about it, but there are lots of things we can learn from scriptures. For instance, the Heaven that we will go to when we die is not our final destination; the New Jerusalem is. Heaven will be re-birthed (as it were) into the New Jerusalem which will come down out of heaven to the earth.
What do we know about the New Jerusalem? Well, we know there will be no need of sun or moon because the Glory of the risen Christ will be the light. Last winter, and I apologize for using this as an example, Pat and I were in San Diego and Palm Springs while Edmonton suffered through one of its worst winters ever. I would often look on the internet at the -30 and -40 deg wind chills in Edmonton and then step out into the warm, desert sun and it would feel sooo good.
Have you ever gotten on a plane in Edmonton in the middle of winter and landed somewhere tropical. Doesn’t the sun feel great when you first get there? Imagine how good it is going to feel when we are in the light of the glorified Son of God. It will be a thousand times better. It will not only be warm and bright, but we will literally be able to feel the love and peace that emanates from the Prince of Peace. It will be an indescribably beautiful feeling, and the closer we are to Him the more beautiful it will feel.
There are many other wonderful things we can learn about the New Jerusalem, like the River of the Water of Life and the Tree of Life – magical, wonderful things; all of which pale in comparison to just being in the proximity of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Of course there are many questions like, ‘How can something that big fit on the earth without causing it to wobble crazily like a drunken sailor?’ The New Jerusalem will be about 1400 miles cubed. That’s roughly from Vancouver to Winnipeg north beyond Great Slave Lake, and 1400 miles high. I can’t even imagine something that high.
The CN Tower in Toronto is 1815 feet tall. The Burj Khalifa, or Khalifa Tower in Dubai, UAE, is the tallest structure in the world. It reaches to 2717 feet, 77feet above half a mile. Look at it, it’s extraordinary. Yet the New Jerusalem will be 2800 times higher. Burj Khalifa >
So the earth will have to change shape if it’s going to spin, possibly even go to relatively flat. The sun and moon will become redundant and so may cease to exist. Of course I’m speculating wildly here, but the Bible does say that there will be no more sea. If you know the water cycle, you will know that without the moisture from the sea evaporating into the air, and without the salt from the sea being carried up into the air to become the nucleus for the moisture to condense on, there can be no real precipitation.
Did Dolly tell you I’m a retired weatherman? Of course you were going to get a weather report from Heaven? Sonny and dry. Plants and animals will be fed from springs or dew as in the Garden of Eden, or from the River which flows from Throne of God.
It’s entirely possible that animals will be able to talk, again speculation, but we know there are animals in Heaven and there will be animals on the New Earth; friendly animals that won’t bite you. There will be no biting or stinging insects. There will be lots of birds, but they will not drop anything on you.
Will we be able to eat meat in Heaven? Probably not. Mind you God made a distinction between wild animals and domestic livestock when he created them in the Garden, but it’s pretty unlikely that, killing animals to eat them will carry on into Eternity. More likely God will create other kinds of foods that will be simply amazing.
We won’t have to worry about diabetes or being overweight or having bad knees or anxiety or cancer, or any of the thousands of debilitating diseases that plague us now. We will have new bodies that will be young by comparison for us; they will be healthy, without the many severe limitations we now have, and they will be virtually indestructible.
Furthermore, our minds will be clear and sharp. Boy, am I looking forward to that. We will have things to do and people to see. The Bible says we will sit at table with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Imagine sitting down to dinner with Moses, or Ruth, or Joseph, or Esther, or Paul. Or, how about Augustine, Thomas a Kempis, Luther, Theresa of Avila, John, Charles & Susanna Wesley, Spurgeon, CS Lewis, Watchman Nee, Billy & Ruth Graham, etc. etc.
Wouldn’t it be fun to sit in on a conversation with David and Jonathon?
We could listen to Beethoven or Handl with an angelic choir; can you imagine the Hallelujah Chorus sung by a thousand angels? Or we could listen to Keith Green with a guitar. We could all join the Gaithers in praising the Lord.