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Lesson Eighteen • Heaven

Dr. Randy T. Johnson

Hell and Heaven are real, actual places of eternity. A description is probably not necessary as people regularly use the words. The word “Heaven” is spoken by people who do not even believe in God: A marriage made in Heaven, good Heavens, in Hog Heaven, Heaven help us, Heaven on earth, Heaven sent, it is heavenly, or even some paradise references. Heaven is the epitome of glorious, delightful, divine, wonderful, paradisiacal, perfect, and blissful.

1. What other phrases have you heard for Heaven?

Everyone will end up in either Hell or Heaven forever.

John 3:16 is one of the most famous verses in the Bible. This verse refers to both places, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”

2. How are both places described here?

3. What determines each person’s destination?

Romans 6:23 says, “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

4. Where does one find eternal life?

Heaven is an actual place. It is not just a concept. Jonathan Edwards has said, “To go to heaven, fully to enjoy God, is infinitely better than the most pleasant accommodations here.”

5. How do you view the worst day on earth compared to Hell, and the best day now compared to Heaven?

Jesus says in John 14:1-3, “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.”

6. What does Jesus say about Heaven?

In Luke 23:43, Jesus is talking to a thief on the cross, “And he said to him, ‘Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in paradise.’”

7. What images come to mind with the word “Paradise”?

Matthew 7:13-14 says, “Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.”

8. Does everyone go to Heaven? If not, is it the majority of the people?

Revelation 7:15-17 gives us a taste of Heaven, “Therefore they are before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his temple; and he who sits on the throne will shelter them with his presence. They shall hunger no more, neither thirst anymore; the sun shall not strike them, nor any scorching heat. For the Lamb in the midst of the throne will be their shepherd, and he will guide them to springs of living water, and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.”

9. What stands out in this passage to you?

Revelation 21:3-4 says, “And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ‘Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.’”

10. How is Heaven described?

Revelation 22:1-5 continues the description, “Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb through the middle of the street of the city; also, on either side of the river, the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit each month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. No longer will there be anything accursed, but the throne of God and of the Lamb will be in it, and his servants will worship him. They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. And night will be no more. They will need no light of lamp or sun, for the Lord God will be their light, and they will reign forever and ever.”

11. What aspects catch your attention?

“For the Christian, heaven is where Jesus is. We do not need to speculate on what heaven will be like. It is enough to know that we will be forever with Him.” William Barclay