Behold, I create new heavens and a new earth; and the former things will not be remembered or come to mind.
What will Heaven be like? Let’s look at some characteristics of this future Heaven that will be our eternal place.
First of all, John says our future home will be new. Revelation 21:1 says, “I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth passed away, and there is no longer any sea.” After the Millennium, there will be a great destruction of the present Heaven and earth. They will pass away. The Apostle Peter told us about the burning up of the present Heaven and earth as well. In 2 Peter 3:7, he said, “By His word the present heavens and earth are being reserved for fire, kept for the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men.” He continued, “But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up” (3:10). What is this fire of judgment that is coming to destroy the earth? Some have speculated that perhaps it is a nuclear holocaust that comes at the end of the Great Tribulation. The truth is, we do not know how God will accomplish this, but everything you see around you, everything you have accumulated, everything you have set your affections on in this world will one day be completely burned up.
Why is it important that God completely destroy this present Heaven and earth? Why can’t He just do a little renovation project of this earth, maybe do a few upgrades? There is one reason God has to destroy everything around us. It is a three-letter word: sin. Sin has infected and ruined everything in this world. The reason you and I have to have a new body to enter into Heaven, 1 Corinthians 15 says, is because this body has been infected with sin. Romans 5:12 says, “Just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned.” You have to have a new body for eternity. If you are a Christian, you are going to have a sin-free body. But just like our bodies have been infected by sin, this world has also been infected with sin. Everything about this world has been infected with sin. Romans 8:22 says, “The whole creation groans” in anticipation. The whole direction of everything in this world is downward. Everything is deteriorating because we have been infected with the sin virus. But God is going to remove that for the New Heaven and Earth, and all of it will be a fulfilment of Isaiah 65:17: “Behold, I create new heavens and a new earth; and the former things will not be remembered or come to mind.”
Second, the New Heaven, our eternal place, will be a physical location. We are not disembodied spirits. Once we die, we inhabit a new body. We are created to be physical beings as well as spiritual beings. Since we are physical beings, we need a physical location in which to live.
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Is Heaven A Real Place Or A State Of Mind?” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2016.
Scripture quotations are taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. (www.lockman.org)