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098 Heaven – and how to enter it

‘And there shall be no more curse, but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it, and his servants shall serve him’     Revelation 22:3

Key Verse:

“In my Father’s house are many mansions…”

(John 14:3)

(Revelation 21,22)

In our last lesson, we were thinking about the place where punishment never ceases, that is, hell. Hell is a horrible place,

created for Satan and his angels.

It is where everyone who neglects the way of salvation which God has established must go,

separated from God forever!

That is what the Holy Scripture declares, saying: 

“And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire” (Rev. 20:15)

Surely, hell is the most horrible subject that man can think about. However, we plan to look at one of the most wonderful subjects that the heart of man can think about, the subject of heaven, also called

Paradise.

People have a great variety of ideas concerning the place called

Heaven,

and what a person must do to enter it. For example, those who belong to eastern religions believe that there are many heavens (paradises) with varying degrees of pleasure, and that where each person goes depends on his works. Others think that a person must first pass through hell, and after he has paid his debt of sin, he will be transferred to Heaven. Still

others think that

Heaven is a place that God has reserved for those who are faithful in their religious duties and that it is a place where folks pursue pleasure, eat, drink and lie with beautiful women. Man certainly has many ideas about Heaven and how to get there. However, our concern is not with what people think about Heaven, but with what God says about it in His holy Word!

Heaven has many names in the Scriptures.

It is called Heaven; the throne of God; the

presence of God;

the house of God; the dwelling place of God the Holy One; the Holy City; the City of the Living God; the heavenly Jerusalem; the home of the holy angels and the Lamb; the presence of the Lord Jesus and His great glory; and the home of God’s people, who have their names written in heaven. The Lord Jesus called Heaven, “My Father’s house,” because that was where He was before He was born on earth.

In summary, Heaven is

the dwelling place of God.

As we have seen, God is everywhere; nevertheless there is a specific place that is holy, radiant, and beautiful, far beyond the stars, where God dwells in His glory. That place is where the Son of the Most High, Jesus, sits on His throne,

at the right hand of the Almighty,

waiting until He returns to the world to judge it and to renew it. Also, Heaven is where thousands and thousands of angels surround the throne, together with the great multitude of people that God has redeemed for Himself through the blood of the Lamb,

the Lord Jesus Christ.

In the end of the book of the Gospel, in the last two chapters of the book of Revelation, God gave John, His apostle, a vision to show him the Holy City, which the Lord has made for those who have their names written in the book of eternal life. Read what the Scripture says about the City of Paradise. (Revelation 21:10-12, 16,19,21-25,27) “And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem … having the glory of God; and

her light was like a stone most precious,

even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal; and had a wall great and high, and had twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels … and the city lieth foursquare … and the foundations of the wall of the city were decorated with all manner of precious stones … and the twelve gates were twelve pearls; each one of the gates was of one pearl; and the street of the city was pure gold, as it were, transparent glass.  And

I saw no temple in it;

for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it. And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it; for the glory of God did light it, and

the Lamb is the lamp of it.

And the nations of them who are saved shall walk in the light of it … and the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day; for there shall be no night there … and there shall in no way enter into it anything that defileth, neither he that worketh abomination, or maketh a lie, but they who are written in the Lamb’s book of life”.

(Rev.22:1-5) “And he showed me a pure river of water of life,

clear as crystal,

proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bore twelve kinds of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month … “There shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain” (Rev.21:4)]. “The throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it, and his servants shall serve him; and they shall see his face; and his name shall be in their foreheads And there shall be no night there; and

they need no lamp,

neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light, and they shall reign forever and ever”.

Thus did God show John the Holy City, which He is preparing for those who choose His way of Salvation. In the rest of this lesson, we would like to think a little about what God says in His Word concerning

the way that leads to Heaven.

How can we be sure that we will go to Heaven and not go to hell?

Can you remember what the Lord Jesus said to His disciples concerning the house of God His Father and the way which leads there? He said to them: (John 14:1-4,6) “Let not your heart be troubled; ye believe in God, believe also in me.

In my Father’s house are many mansions;

if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself, that where I am, there ye may be also. And where I go ye know, and the way ye know … I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man cometh unto the Father,

but by me”.

That is what Jesus the Messiah said. He Himself is The Way. Whoever does not come by Jesus, the Son of God, that is, the holy Redeemer, will never enter the holy presence of God!

Never!

That is what the Scripture declares when it says: Neither is there any salvation in any other; for there is no other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved” (Acts 4:12) “For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man, Christ Jesus, who gave himself a ransom for all …” (1 Tim.2:5,6)

The Mediator, Jesus Christ, who came forth from God, is

the Way of Salvation

that leads to Paradise. In order to bring sinners to God, Christ was born into the world, lived a holy life upon earth, shed His blood as the Perfect Sacrifice for sin, and then rose from the dead on the third day. No one comes to God except through Him.

Do you believe that?

Do you see that Jesus the Messiah is the Way that brings sinners into the presence of God? Perhaps we can illustrate it with a little story.

A certain man lived in a small village far away in the bush. He belonged to a tribe of people who did not wear clothes. They only wore something like a belt around their loins. This man had a piece of land which he farmed, but someone more powerful than he came and stole his land so that he had nowhere left to farm. No one would help him to reclaim his land because he had no means of paying them.

One day he got the idea to go to the capital city to see the President,

the ruler of the land,

and ask him to help him, because he had heard that the Ruler was a just and compassionate man. Thus he got up and walked and walked and walked until he came to the big city and to the presidential palace. Oh, what a big and beautiful house! When he arrived at the gate of the house, and attempted to enter with his filthiness and nakedness, a guard said to him: “Hey you! What are you trying to do?!” He replied, “I want to see the President.” The guard said to him, “Ha! Do you suppose that anyone can just enter here as they please? Look at you! Don’t you know that you cannot come in here naked and dirty? Get away from here, man, or I’ll throw you in prison!”

Thus, the poor fellow turned and went away, but

he was not discouraged.

He went and begged from morning to afternoon. Then he bought some inexpensive clothes, bathed himself, dressed and went back to the Ruler’s palace. Upon arriving back at the gate, the guard said to him, “You are wearing clothes, but the clothes are not good enough to allow you to come before the Ruler of the land. And even if your clothes were good enough, you couldn’t enter, because

you must have special permission

to enter the Ruler’s house. You have no right to enter! Now go!”

At this, the man became discouraged, saying, “What’s the use? After all the trouble I’ve gone through, I still can’t get near the Ruler of the land!” His hope gone, he sat at the side of the road in great dismay. However, while all this was happening,

the Ruler of the land saw him.

The Ruler’s eldest son was there also. The Ruler said to his son, “Go and find out what that fellow wants.” When the Ruler’s son came up to the man, he squatted down and said to him, “Sir, can I help you with something? What has brought you here and why are you so upset?” The man said to him, “I want to see the Ruler of the land, but it is impossible.

All my efforts have been in vain!”

The young man said to him, “I am the son of the Ruler of the land, and my father sent me out here to help you. Follow me.” Thus, he accompanied him to the gate of the presidential palace. When they came up to the guard who had previously prevented the poor man from entering, the guard saluted them with great respect as they walked through the gate and into the court of the palace. The son gave the poor man a beautiful robe to wear, and together they entered the presidential palace. Thus, the man was able to enter the presidential palace and see the Ruler of the land, because of the help and authority of

the Ruler’s son.

Friends, that is how it is with those who want to enter Heaven, the palace of the King of kings. God, the Ruler of the Universe is high and holy. We cannot just enter His glorious presence in any sort of way!

Our own efforts can never gain us access into His presence.

We are all like that poor man who attempted to enter the presence of the President by his own feeble efforts. The Scripture says: “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags” (Isa. 64:6) Heaven is a holy place, and “there shall in no way enter into it anything that defileth, neither he that worketh abomination” (Rev. 21:27)

No one can get us into that holy place except

the Holy One who came from there!

That holy Person is Jesus Christ, the Son of the Most High, the Lamb of God, who came from Heaven, died as a sacrifice to take away sin, rose from the dead and

returned to Heaven!

So then, who can enter Heaven? Only those who have been cleansed through faith in Jesus the Redeemer and in the blood that He shed. Only those will enter Heaven! That is what the Scripture declares when it says: “For there is no difference. For all have sinned,

and come short of the glory of God,

being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God hath set forth to be a sacrifice of atonement

through faith

in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God” (Romans 3:22-25) “If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater; for this is the witness of God which he hath testified of his Son.

He that believeth

 on the Son of God hath the witness in himself;

he that believeth not

God hath made him a liar, because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son. And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and

this life is in his Son.

He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God, that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God”       (1 John 5:9-13)

Dear Friend, do you know that you have eternal life? Are you sure that you will enter Heaven, and rejoice in the presence of God forever? Have you believed on the Name of the Son of God?

Is your name written in the Lamb’s book of life?

God bless you as consider this thrilling verse from His holy Word: 

“Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him” (1 Cor. 2:9)

We would invite you to answer the questions attached and send them together with any questions that you might have

Lesson Content