Today's Devotions

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Showcase:Fruit of the Spirit

  • The Fruit of the Spirit: Kindness +

    Kindness: The quality of compassion and generosity, characteristic of God’s dealings towards the weak and poor, and demanded of believers. Read More
  • Fruit of the Spirit: Faithfulness +

    Faithfulness: it requires sacrifice, Read More
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grudem-wayne

What is heaven?

Is it a place?

How will the earth be renewed?

What will it be like to live in the new heavens and new earth?

 

A. We will live eternally with God in new heavens and a new earth

After final judgment, believers enter into the full enjoyment of life in God's presence forever. (Mt 25:34; Rev 22:3)

Christians often speak of living with God "in heaven" forever, but biblical teaching is much richer: new heavens and anew earth. (Isa 65:17; 2 Peter 3:13; Rev 21:1-3)

1. What Is Heaven?

Heaven is the place where God most fully makes known his presence to bless. (Is 66:1; 1 Pe 3:22; Mt 6:9)2. Heaven is a place, not just a state of mind (Acts 1:11; Acts 7:55-56; John 14:3)3. The physical creation will be renewed and we will continue to exist and act in it (Rom 8:19-21; Heb 1:11-12; Heb12:26-27; 2 Peter 3:10-13; Re 20:11; Re 21:1)It seems preferable in these passages to think that the earth is to be changed and renewed.- Difficult to think of God annihilating his original creation as this seems to give the devil the last word by scrapping what was originally "very good"- Passages above may simply refer to the burning up of some of the things on the earth in its present form, notits very existence

4. Our resurrection bodies will be part of the renewed creation- In the new heavens and new earth there will be a place and activities for our resurrection bodies, which will never grow old or become weak or ill. There is nothing inherently "unspiritual" about the physical world that God made and called "very good" (Gen 1:31).

Question: What good will it do to have a body in heaven?People will probably work at the whole range of investigation and development of creation throughtechnological, creative, and inventive means, thus showing more and more of the potential of human beings created in the image of God.(Most of our enjoyment of what God has made involves our physical bodies.)Randy Alcorn example of Adam & Eve tasting a mango (p. 194)- We will eat and drink at "the marriage supper of the Lamb" (Rev 19:9). Jesus will once again drink wine with his disciples in the heavenly kingdom (Luke 22:18). The "river of the water of life" will flow "from the throne of God and of the Lamb through the middle of the street of the city" (Rev 22:1). The tree of life willbear "twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit each month" (Rev 22:2).- Music is prominent in descriptions of heaven, so it is possible both musical and artistic activities will be done to the glory of God.- Since God is infinite and we are finite, we may expect that we will be able to go on learning about Godand his relationship to creation for all eternity.An excellent book on this topic:Randy Alcorn, Heaven (Tyndale House, 2004)- much emphasis on the truly physical nature of new heaven, new earth- says people who think of heaven as only "spiritual" are following Plato (about 427-347 BC) and Greek philosophy, not the Bible -- this kind of heaven would be boring! Alcorn uses his imagination to think of what the true heaven will be like (many examples)

5. The new creation will not be "timeless" but will include an unending succession of momentsThough the New Jerusalem will never experience night, Revelation relates many actions that involve a sequenceof events. (Rev 21:24-26; Rev 22:2)

B. The doctrine of the new creation provides a great motivation for storing up treasures in heaven rather than on earth(2 Peter 3:11-13; Matt 6:19-21)

C. The new creation will be a place of great beauty and abundance and joy in the presence of God (Rev 21:1-27; Rev22:5)

The most important feature of the heavenly city is that we will be in the presence of God and enjoy unhindered ellowship with him. Rev 21:23; Rev 22:3-4; Ps 16:11)

http://scottsdalebible.com/assets/audio/christian-essentials/20090419WGrudem.mp3

Reflections to Consider

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Publications

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Music

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Audio & Video

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Favorites

  • Witnesses for Jesus by Tim Keller (Mark 15) +

    Tim Keller discusses the significance of the women and men who saw Jesus die, buried, and resurrected.  Read More
  • Prayer-bringing light into darkness by NT Wright +

    NT Wright discusses the importance of prayer in maintaining a relationship with Jesus. Read More
  • After darkness, light-the reformation by Michael Reeves +

    Michael Reeves discusses the transformative power of bringing Jesus to the world at the heart of the Reformation. Read More
  • The Esther Option-Living in a fallen world by Mike Cosper +

    The following is an excerpt from an article on The Gospel Coalition website. Read More
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Hidden Blessings

  • Falling in Love With God +

    “falling in love with God,” as Boa’s subtitle for the facet explains. In this approach we attempt to enter into Read More
  • One Holy Fire, Nicky Cruz +

    The introduction to One Holy Fire, Let the Spirit Ignite Your Soul establishes Cruz’s desire to awaken the passion and Read More
  • Transformed +

    Webster defines devotion as “love, loyalty, or enthusiasm for a person, activity or cause.” How do we fall in love Read More
  • A Christ-Life Through Spiritual Alignment +

    A Christ-Life Through Spiritual Alignment Something has gone wrong deep within me and gets the better of me every time. Read More
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