Revelation 21:1-8 New King James Version (NKJV)
All Things Made New
1 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.
2 Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
3 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.
4 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.”
5 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.”
6 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. 7 He who overcomes shall inherit all things,[d] and I will be his God and he shall be My son. 8 But the cowardly, unbelieving,[e] abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”
Do you ever think about heaven - what it is like?
--If that will be our home? Or how we can go there?
--If we can see our loved ones, or know them?
--Jesus, in His Word, answers "Yes!" to all these.
--It is He who opens the gates of heaven to us all.
Sunday afternoons I often went to a retirement home, in Philadelphia, to conduct worship services.
--"Best place next to heaven," was its motto.
--West Virginia's slogan is "Almost Heaven," where I pastored a number of years - in its great beauty.
--But we want to know what the real heaven is like.
--The Bible tells us, "It is out of the world!"
Revelation 21:3, 4, says, "..God Himself will be with them and be their God..and shall 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." Imagine!
--"There was no more sea" - nor sin or temptation.
--And "there is no night there .. Jesus the Light!"
Troubles, sorrows, loneliness of earth gone forever.
--We will all be changed. Bodies never ill or old.
--The Great Tribulation avoided! Satan is bound!
--Where there is "no fear," but joy and rejoicing!
As sureas there is an earth, there is a heaven - to be sought and a hell, to be shunned. Let's prepare.
--Jesus said, "I go to prepare a place for you, that where I am you may be also. In My Father's house are many mansions" (John 14). Jesus is "the way."
--God makes "all things new." His words, "true."
Heaven is mentioned 737 times in the Bible.
--St. Paul saw it, and tells us in I Corinthians 2:9.
--Jesus came from heaven, to get us into heaven, and to get heaven into us. Then ascended back there.
An infant in the womb can't imagine what life is like outside the womb, but God gives glimpses of heaven.
--It is worth knowing, where we're going, my friend!
I. HEAVEN IS A REAL PLACE, FOR REAL PEOPLE.
--How do we know? The Lord God tells us so, often.
--Patriarchs, propehts, apostles, saints, are there.
--My grandparents, aunts, uncles, mother, dad, loved ones and friends I know, are there and so lived.
--Their hope and trust was in the living Christ.
--God has done His part to get you and me, there.
--In this everlastingly wonderful place where God is.
God would not deceive. He cannot lie. He is God.
--Heaven is real - no fairy tale, like Santa Claus.
--Heaven is a fact. Jesus' life, resurrection, shows us countless proofs, that you and I can count on.
--If you know the Lord, know His Word, you believe.
If you pray The Lord's Prayer, you believe in heaven.
--In this prayer, we pray, "Our Father..in heaven."
--Yes, heaven and heaven's God and help, are real.
Years ago Russian cosmnauts returned from space, and proclaimed, "We didn't see God..or heaven!"
--My friend, they didn't look in the right place.
--Or in the right way! For Jesus must take us!
--He said, "No one comes to the Father, except by Me" (John 14:6). We must follow Christ, to heaven.
Some say, "We get our heaven or hell right here."
--Well maybe a tiny taste - but not the real thing.
--This life is neither heaven, or hell, my friend.
--The real place is yet to come to saved or unsaved.
All our tears, tragedies, heartaches here are not the place "prepared for us" like heaven, Jesus spoke of.
II. HEAVEN IS A PREPARED PLACE, FOR PREPARED PEOPLE.
--Jesus said, "I go to prepare a place for you..."
--It is for all those believers "born again" in Him.
--He has been preparing it for a long while.
--Are we preparing ourselves for this place:
I remember growing up when we expected some guests.
--We often welcomed them. Mother wanted us prepared.
--The house would be especially readied to look good.
--The best dishes and linens we had were put out.
--We prepared as best we could to welcome them home.
--Or, when going on a trip, people must prepare.
--So it is with heaven, let's be prepared, for there will come a day - we know not when - to meet God.
Some people try to tell me that death ends all - and there is no more beyone this life, period.
--That's exactly what they thought in Spain so many, long years ago, for its motto was "No More Beyond."
--Like Columbus, in 1492, proved there was "More Beyone," so did our Lord Jesus in His resurrection.
In these terrorists times of uncertainty, no one can know when God may call us out. Let's be prepared.
--While we are here, live for the Lord.
--I asked a man, "Are you saved, sure of heaven?"
--His reply, "Man, since Jesus saved me, I'm in heaven down here with my Lord, already!"
--He was prepared! That's the way to be, my friend.
III. HEAVEN IS AN INHABITED PLACE, OF PERFECTION.
--It is a "city..whose builder is God" (Heb. 11:10)
--A place of the living - not of the dead.
--The one place where all is perfect. No evil ever.
--A loving, caring, holy place, of such people.
Travel the world over, there's no perfect place.
--Some great, beautiful places, to be sure, all over.
--But daily somewhere there are funerals - except heaven.
--Inhabited by God, angels, and people mad perfect.
Heaven is so perfect, we will never grow ill or old!
--They'll turn the clock back, to remain at our best.
--No more death, sorrow, crying, or pain." Gone!
--No more sickness. Separation. No more sin."
--Never a final farewell. Hurts. Or heartaches.
You got any troubles? Hurts? Pains? Or pills?
--Imagine a place where these are unknown.
--Where no one ever does anything wrong. No evils.
--Where there are no hurt feelings, ill-will, hate.
--No jealousy. No mistakes. Handicaps, or poverty.
--There is no lack. No want. No taxes. No fears.
--Just Jesus loving us dearly. We loving God back!
Many are in heaven, but never a funeral or cemetery.
--No prisons, jails, or hospitals ever needed.
--Get people saved, and earth becomes more heavenly.
--There's no night, no pain, no death, no tears!
--No unsaved people. Only "born again" believer!
IV. HEAVEN IS A PERFECT PLACE, OF JOYOUS PEOPLE.
--What we know about heaven is in Jesus and a Bible.
--Its beauty, grandeur and glory is incomparable.
--Revelation 21 and 22 tell of "streets of gold, and precious gems - of the beauty of the place.
All that is fine,but it is not the place, but it is the people - the Person of God and Jesus - we seek!
--To bow in adoration. Sit at His feet, in person!
--To learn more and more of our Lord. To thank Him!
That's not all - our saved loved ones we'll meet!
--Heaven is a place of glad reunions! No goodbyes!
--Goodbyes, sorrows, tears, often come on earth, but heaven is a place of everlasting joys.
--Where we never see each other for the last time!
A perfect place, but it is the people there we love.
--The Lord. Patriarchs, prophets, apostles,angels.
--And all the saved family, loved ones and friends!
If we live in Christ, "to die is gain" (Phil.1:21).
--But leave that also up to the Lord - not anxious.
--While we are here, make earth more heavenly!
--How? "Living godly and righteous in this life."
--Sure we are saved. And seeking it for others.
--Down here, we are just "passing through," for our real home is "somewhere beyond the blue."
Those who have lost loved ones, take comfort today.
--A better day, place, and life, awaits in reunion!
--It is simple. Repent of sin. Receive the Savior.
--It is Jesus, our Messiah, who died and rose again.
--Follow and serve Him. Share this good news.
--It is worth sharing, for no other like Jesus.
--Earth's greatest joys can't compare to heaven's!
Come follow Jesus! - Wilbert D. Gough, ThD.,DD. 662