– Lester Roloff
5 Common Misconceptions About Heaven
This quote pretty much sums up the power of heaven. Heaven really is the exclamation point to life. It answers all our questions regarding life and existence and brings to a fulfilment the highest human hope.
Heaven is a big concept if you dig deep enough. This is precisely why many people have misconceptions regarding heaven. Here are just the five most common misconceptions regarding this stage of human existence:
Misconception #1: Heaven is a spiritual state
Heaven is such a big concept in the bible that it’s easy to be confused by how big and profound heaven is. One way to deal with the confusion is to basically strip down heaven into a spiritual state. In other words, heaven is not really a specific place, but more of a state of being with God. This is very tempting because it is highly personal. It is also very modern. Unfortunately, it’s also untrue. The Bible is very clear, especially the book of Revelation regarding what heaven looks like; where heaven is and what heaven involves. Heaven is a real place. Heaven is not just a spiritual state.
Misconception #2: Heaven is a reward to those who deserve it
You don’t have to earn God’s love. He already loves you. Unfortunately, thinking that heaven is a reward to those who deserve it really throws away that whole concept that we don’t have to work for God’s love. God’s grace is enough for us. The bible is very clear regarding that. Just as people are saved by grace alone through faith, heaven isn’t something you work for. It’s a free gift.
Misconception #3: Heaven is for our ultimate happiness
Heaven is not about happiness. It’s more than that. To reduce heaven to just one emotional state really is to degrade the spiritual and cosmic value of heaven. It’s like rushing to the ocean and whipping out a small Styrofoam cup and scooping up some water and saying that’s the ocean in a cup. It doesn’t work that way. Heaven is not about you. It’s not only about your happiness and emotional state. It goes beyond that.
Misconception #4: We are given riches in heaven
One key misconception regarding heaven flows from the contrast between life’s trials and tribulations and getting our reward in the afterlife. The problem with this conception of heaven is that we’re basically using heaven as a projection of the life that we wish we had on earth. This is an unfair depiction of heaven because heaven is so much more.
By looking at heaven as some sort of solution to personal failings and suffering here, we’re really saying that heaven revolves our needs and our agenda. Heaven has its own agenda; heaven has its own reason for being. Above all else, Heaven is about God, not us.
Misconception #5: The good life on earth continues in heaven
This misconception really is just a continuation of misconception #4. Just as heaven is not the answer to earthly poverty nor it is an extension to earthly riches. Life on earth really has no comparison to life in heaven. It’s easy to look at life on earth as revolving our needs, anxieties, fears, shortcomings, and insecurities, however, that same analysis doesn’t play out when applied to heaven.
The reality of heaven is that it’s all about God. It’s all about His existence. All about His glory, and all about His power. When you read the book of revelation, there are scenes of massive throngs of heavenly intelligences and beings, giving God praise and glory 24/7. That is the ultimate happiness because all conceptions of self are put into proper perspective. It’s all about God. We join a greater reality that is beyond ourselves. Regardless of whatever capacity we may have for love, a sense of meaning, joy, and peacefulness all pales in comparison with the pure state that we will attain when we are in heaven and when we are in the presence of God. That is the reality of heaven.