– Martin Luther
Is there anything greater, after your salvation in Jesus Christ, than to receive eternal life? Meditate on what it will be like to live forever? No wonder we can’t even describe what heaven will be like. It is too marvelous for the human mind to even know, let alone describe it, as Paul wrote “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him” (1st Cor 2:9).
Jesus spoke a lot about the kingdom of heaven and the rewards of believers. In Matthew 6:19-20 Jesus said “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal.” You’re not going to need a security alarm system for those treasures in heaven like you will here on earth so why not invest them in eternity? You can’t take your treasures with you but you can send them on ahead and they’ll be there waiting for you when you get there.
Whenever we enter the kingdom of heaven or if we die before Jesus’ return, we’ll see the end of some very bad things. This means the end of all suffering, pain, sorrow, mourning, and the death of death while at the same time God wipes away every tear (Rev 21:4). Maybe the younger generation can’t appreciate this as much as the older generations do because they feel the aches, the pains, and the sorrows of a sin-soaked world every day of their lives. Imagine having a new body, restored to perfection as Adam and Eve were first created.
Time and Eternity
If you consider time and eternity, they are not worth comparing, right? How can time, a finite, measured thing be placed against eternity to which there is no end? Paul wrote “I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us” (Rom 8:18). One million lifetimes cannot compare with even one second of joy in the kingdom of heaven. That joy is immeasurable. This life’s joys are limited. Eternal glory remains, earthly joy is temporary. Which joy would you rather have?
I am not saying that we count as useless the beauty of this earth. I love the Rocky Mountains in the fall and the Gulf Coast in the winter, and although I rarely go to either, I love the natural beauty of those two places. The same things we love in nature in this world today are still going to exist in the kingdom but even more glorious I believe. If you know how much beauty there is on this planet now, imagine when the kingdom arrives? There will be fruit bearing trees (Rev 22:2) and animals in the kingdom (Isaiah 11) but more importantly, not only is nature restored to its original beauty, the nature of animals is changed too “The wolf shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the young goat, and the calf and the lion and the fattened calf together; and a little child shall lead them” (Isaiah 11:6), “The cow and the bear shall graze; their young shall lie down together; and the lion shall eat straw like the ox” (Isaiah 11:7) and “The nursing child shall play over the hole of the cobra, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the adder’s den” (Isaiah 11:8).
I look forward to eating at the marriage feast of the Lamb of God because we’ll still be able to enjoy food like Jesus did after His resurrection. We’ll great family reunions of lost loved ones but we’ll also have trees, crops, animals, and a changed heart in mankind. The more I think about heaven, the more I would not give one moment of heaven for all the joy and riches of the world.