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Is Heaven a Real Place or just a State of Mind?

 

Renette Vermeulen

 

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Topics 

· Scripture calls Heaven “the Heavenly Jerusalem,” and Symbolizes it as “the Bride, the Lamb’s wife” 

· Heaven, just as the blood-cleansed bride of Christ, is “without spot, wrinkle, or blemish”

· The Throne of God is in this Wonderful Place 

· The City of God and its many mansions   

 

Scripture calls Heaven “the Heavenly Jerusalem,” and Symbolizes it as “the Bride, the Lamb’s wife” 

The reason why carnal mankind, not thinking wider than their visual field, tries to deny the existence of God and the eternal dwelling place of God, heaven, is because God, in human terms, is invisible, untouchable and inaudible.  Hence, it is evident that He lives in another dimension.  A sphere we call “the spirit world”.  A supernatural realm where spiritual beings called angels worship, praise and serve God, the Eternal Spirit.  Jn. 4:24 declares, “God is Spirit, and those that worship Him must worship Him in [their born again spirits, Jn. 1:11-3; 3:3-5, ] and in truth, [the Truth of His Word,]” (1 Ths. 5:23.) 

The writer of Heb. 12:22-24 described heaven as follows, “You came unto [the spiritual] Mount Zion and to the [spiritual] city of the living God; the heavenly Jerusalem, to an innumerable company of angels; to the general assembly of… [those] registered in heaven [in the Lamb’s Book of Life, Rev. 20:15,] to God the Judge of all, to the [human] spirits of just people made perfect [by their acceptance of Jesus and His full atonement in their place;] to Jesus [the Only] Mediator of the New Covenant, and to the blood [of Jesus] that speaks of better things than [the Old Testament Covenant…]”  (Heb. 8:13.) 

John’s vision of the heavenly Jerusalem or heaven itself, as described in the whole context of Revelation chapters 21-22, is a symbol of the born-again, blood-cleansed, Holy-Spirit filled, “holy bride, the Lamb’s wife,” which consists of the spirit-bodies of all of Jesus’ sincere believers, (Rev. 21:9-11.)  In this chapter, John describes Jesus’ heavenly bride or God’s sinless, dwelling place on earth, the temple of the Holy Spirit, as an allegory of His “holy city,” (Rev. 21:1-7; 1 Cor. 6:15-20.) 

This does not mean that heaven is “residing in the so-called spiritual, or enlightened minds of the members of the Old Apostolic Church,” as this religion alleges.  Or that ‘heaven can be pulled down to earth,’ as the Bethel/Jesus Culture deception says.  God’s dwelling place in the spirit realm, for uncountable aeons already, has been a real place.  It is also the eternal destination of the born again spirit bodies of the deceased in Christ, (Lu. 16:19-31.)  Jesus declared to the man next to Him on the cross, “Today, [the moment we die,] you will be with Me in Paradise” or heaven, (Lu. 23:23.)  Henry Matthews Commentary explains, “The bride is the [perfected body of Christ] in her glorious, triumphant state, under the resemblance of having the glory of God shining in all its lustre — the bride comely through the comeliness put on her by her Bridegroom; glorious in her relation to [the perfect, most holy] Christ, in His image now perfected in her, and in His favour shining upon her… Under the emblem of a city, far exceeding in riches and splendour all the cities of this physical world; this new [spiritual] Jerusalem is here represented to us as [the eternal dwelling place of the most holy God,]” (Read Col. 2:9-10.) 

 

Heaven, just as the blood-cleansed bride of Christ, is “without spot, wrinkle, or blemish” 

Paul described the blood-cleansed bride of Christ, the earthly symbol of God’s holy heaven, as “not having a spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be [completely] holy and without [any sinful] blemish,” (Eph. 5:27.)  This is why God requires that His sincerely born again, obedient believers must continually repent from all wickedness in their daily, hourly, and minute-by-minute walk with Him. 

Unrepentant Christians and unbelievers will not be able to enter into God’s most holy dwelling place called “heaven,” (1 John 1:6-10.)  Rev. 22:15 declares, “But outside [heaven, or outside the true body and bride of Christ as the allegory of heaven, are the unrepentant Christians,] dogs [that were sleepy, ceremonially unclean animals in Old Testament terms; the symbol of slothful, spiritually unclean believers in New Testament,] sorcerers, sexually immoral, murderers, [tongue murderers such as liars and slanderers as well,] idolaters, and whoever loves and practices a lie,” (2 Ths. 2:9-12.)  Hence, Jesus warned in Mt. 7:21-23, “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of Heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your Name, cast out demons in Your Name, and done many wonders in Your Name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’”  Such hypocritical Christians are described in Rev. 21:8 as “cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers… [who, together with] all liars [and deceivers] shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second [eternal] death,” (Rev. 21:8.)

While heaven, or the heavenly Jerusalem, is nothing like the physical Jerusalem in Israel, we can be certain that it exists, although it is, to us, as unseen as the wind, electricity, gravity, light, sound waves; the world of microorganisms, and atomic and sub-atomic particles.  Yet, heaven is not an abstract place without form.  God  planned, measured, and built His dwelling place most meticulously, according to Rev. 21:10-27.  It is a marvellous, humanly incomprehension place; a perfect cubical city of “one thousand five hundred square hundred miles, built on foundations of precious stones with walls and a main street of pure, see-through gold.  And its twelve gates are enormous, solid pearls that will never have to be closed.” 

Scripturally, gold is always the symbol of holiness, as silver is the symbol of spiritual purity, and ‘precious stones’ always symbolize the Holy-Spirit inspired works of God’s true saints; His sincerely born again believers, (1 Cor. 3:12.)  All these wonderful descriptions of heaven, (the foundations of precious stones, the pearly gates, etcetera,) are not tangible in a human sense.  However, all these spiritual wonders are real to true believers now in terms of the incredible holiness, righteousness, goodness, and truth, which emanate from our Most Perfect Creator and Savior God, Who dwells unveiled in that most perfect spiritual place called “heaven.” 

 

The Throne of God is in this Wonderful Place 

The throne of God is in this wondrous place called “heaven.”  Everyone sees God “face to face;” “there is no need for a temple there; God Almighty Himself is the temple of heaven,” (Rev. 21:4, 22; 22:3-4.)  This city is continually filled with God’s glory and light, so day and night do not exist there.  Only God’s peace, holiness, and righteousness reign in this holy place.  This city is completely safe; the gates are never closed or locked, and not a single tear is ever shed inside its gates of pearl.  So, saints and angels cannot cry.  God Himself can never cry.  No one ever becomes ill or lonely.  No one ever grows old and dies.  This is the glorious city, which God calls “heaven;” His golden palace, built on a foundation of precious stones, (Rev. 21:4.) 

We generally accept that heaven is a place high above us in outer space somewhere, as Jesus literally ascended into heaven through the clouds.  We also expect Him to return through the clouds and this is true, as Scripture always refers to heaven as somewhere ‘up there’ in the spirit world.  However, the existence of God’s spirit world and His dwelling place or heaven especially, is completely incomprehensible to us, as we cannot see it or touch it, (Acts 1:9-11.)  It is even possible that - in part, at least - the spirit world, (not God’s dwelling place in heaven specifically,) exists parallel to our physical dimension, for after Jesus had risen from the dead in a glorified body, He could appear ‘out of nowhere’ to enjoy a physical meal with His disciples before disappearing ‘into nowhere’ through a wall, (Lu. 24:36-46.)  We cannot believe that Jesus just disappeared into ‘nothingness.’  Surely, He stepped from the spirit world into the physical realm and back

What we do know for certain, is that heaven is forever and everlasting life in the presence of God is for all time.  ‘Forever’ means that time does not exist there.  The word ‘time’ is only used in relevance to our physical life in this physical dimension.  Watches and clocks exist only on this physical plane where they remind us of our short, temporal life.  The spiritual realm is not bound to time and space.  Accordingly, no one ever grows old in heaven and hell never ceases to torment the lost souls in its grasp, (1 Pet. 1:24-25.)  

 

The City of God and its Many Mansions   

There is a specific place for everyone in heaven.  A living space that will last for all eternity in the presence of God.  Jesus stated in Jn. 14:2-3, “In my Father’s house there are many dwelling places…” which signifies that each of God’s children will have a specific space to occupy in His heavenly city, called “The New Jerusalem,” (Rev. 21:9-27 and chapter 22.)  Most English translations of the Bible use the word “mansions” instead of ‘dwelling places.’  Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance translates the Greek word that was used in the original text as “a staying, residence or abode,” which describes a ‘home’ in the presence of God. 

However, I don’t want to go to heaven for a glorified ‘mansion’ and the streets of gold; the ‘crowns,’ the ‘glory,’ or even the eternal “company of my loved ones” - if the latter can be true, as only those, who were sincerely born again disciples or obedient followers of the Lord Jesus, washed in the blood of the Lamb, will enter into heaven, (Jn. 1:12-13; 3:3-5;  Rev. 21:7-8!)  I want to go to heaven to spend all of eternity in the presence of the Highest God; to look upon His glorious face, and to live in His eternal light, which floods that most perfect place of eternal safety and salvation, completely devoid of hunger, cold, strife, sorrow, longing, fear, and all the other human conditions that vex our physical existence on earth. 

“For the former things [of earth and our human existence on earth] have passed away [when we reach heaven,] and all things will be made new,” (Rev. 21:4-5.)  

 

Extra-Scriptural Revelations of Heaven — and Hell 

Contrary to the wonderful truths of Scripture, many so-called ‘divine revelations’ of heaven (and hell!) have surfaced, misleading and confusing the body of Christ; twisting Scripture and spiritual realities, as revealed in the true context of the Bible.  Sadly, false teachers abuse the word “mansion,” used by most English translators of the Bible, to replace God’s most holy, most sacred heaven with some kind of ‘glorified’ earthly palace for the super-wealthy — a kind of physical ‘heaven’ here on earth.  Hence, Charismatic preacher Benny Hinn roars, “If I can only find a verse in the Bible that says ‘Kill your enemies!’...  If I hear once more how it’s in heaven and how it’s gonna be, I’m...  gonna get a Holy Ghost machine gun and blow your head off...  I want my gold now!” 

Why the many Extra-Scriptural ‘revelations’ of heaven and hell, as if the Bible does not say it all in truth and in the full context of God’s Word?  Well, the aim of Seed-Faith teachers such as Jesse Duplantis, (who allegedly regularly journeys to heaven,) and all their co-conspirators of the prosperity movement such as mason Kenneth Copeland, Joyce Meyer, Rhema’s Ray McCauley and Clan, the masonic/Promise Keepers’ all-men conference keeper Angus Buchan, etcetera, is to extend their entitled Gospel of Greed here on earth into a glorified, carnal version of ‘billionaire mansions’ in heaven. 

Þ If we really want to get to heaven, we will have to obey Jesus and flee from these masters of deception, who are making ‘utensils’ out of all their followers!  (Mt. 24:3-14.)  Being clandestine “robbers” as Jesus called them, “who did not come in by the Door, [Jesus Himself and His True Gospel,] but climbed in another way,” they pose deadly dangers to our financial, emotional, and spiritual health, as well as our eternal life in heaven, (Jn. 10:1-10.)  

In his many extra-scriptural encounters with God, the extremely presumptuous preacher Jesse Duplantis supposedly ‘comforts’ God when He is ‘sad,’ makes God ‘laugh’ when He needs a ‘joke’ to ‘cheer’ Him up; ‘consoles a weeping Jesus,’ (while Scripture declares that not a single tear is shed in heaven!) and a ‘grateful’ God actually said to him, “I need you boy; I need you Jesse.” 

This is making God’s most holy dwelling place, heaven, into some kind of Kingdom-Now here on earth fallacy. 

It is, to say the least, utter blasphemy against the Most High, Most Holy, Omnipotent God and His dwelling place called “heaven.” 

Home 

The Time is at Hand: the Five Wise and Five Foolish virgins at the Midnight Cry 

Þ Extra-Scriptural Revelations of Heaven and Hell—What does Scripture Say

Þ Astro Projection, Astro Travel, and Near Death Experiences 

Þ Difference Between the Kingdom of God and the Kingdom of Heaven 

 

How to get to heaven 

Can one lose one’s salvation? 

 

Þ Are the Supernatural ANGELS OF GOD Real and Who are They? 

Þ FAIRIES, ORBS, AND ANGELS    

Þ Who are Satan and his Demons - and is hell ‘a real place,’ purgatory, or an ‘annihilation after death?   

 

Was Jesus Begotten or Created — And is there a Difference?

 

WITCHCRAFT—(pagan & Christian) WHAT IS THAT?