Tag Archives: Faith not Feelings

What is Heaven According to the Bible and What Will We Do There?

This post was written by my friend Susie Kyman. I discovered it after I completed writing a series about the 5 Eternal Crown Rewards Christians will receive in heaven.  I went to her Facebook profile to look for a certain post she had made.

However, this is what I found, I was astounded at the clarity and insight she wrote about heaven and what it will be like for Christians. I know it will bring deeper insight for you, too.

As you read the last paragraph keep in mind that she wrote it before her beloved husband Troy was diagnosed with cancer that took his life. He personally “liked” her post and is now in the great cloud of witnesses watching for her!

HEAVEN: A RESURRECTED LIFE, IN A RESURRECTED BODY, WITH A RESURRECTED CHRIST, ON A RESURRECTED EARTH!

October 8, 2011 at 10:53 AM

What is heaven according to the bible and what will we do?

Heaven and eternal life are talked about and taught about very little considering it is our only hope! The Word of God gives us many glimpses of Heaven and even goes beyond that to promise life on a new and redeemed earth.

Even many Christians continue to fear death, dread death and are not confident about what awaits them when this life ends.

Many have been taught or have assumed that heaven is a place of “disembodied spirits,” that we will spend our days floating on clouds, in a state of eternal sleep, or that all of eternity is spent worshipping around the throne.

None of these descriptions fit what the Word promises us regarding eternal life!  It will be a LIFE, although much richer than the one we enjoy now.   We can’t know everything that awaits us, but the Bible has given us many clues as to what we can look forward to.

I am going to include the Scripture references for each of these claims, but I am going to let you look most of them up, as I believe our own diligent search in the Word brings the most revelation.

HEAVEN HAS PHYSICAL PROPERTIES AND IS CAPABLE OF CONTAINING PHYSICAL OBJECTS. IT HAS CITIES, GARDENS, BUILDINGS, BANQUETS, AND BODIES!

City – (Hebrews 11:16)

Buildings – (John 14: 1-3) Jesus promised a house with many rooms.

Food – We are promised a “wedding banquet” and a supper. Jesus talked about eating and drinking again when the Passover was fulfilled (after His death) – Luke 22. Wedding feasts and banquets in Jesus’ day served the best foods available to them.

Garden – Jesus called it paradise when talking to the thief on the cross (Luke 23-43). The Greek definition of paradise compares it to the enclosed gardens of the Persians.

Heaven has physical properties and is capable of containing physical objects. It has cities, gardens, buildings, banquets, and bodies!Click to Tweet

Are you confident about what awats you when this life ends?

IN HEAVEN WE WILL NOT BE DISEMBODIED SPIRITS. IF THERE IS NO NEED FOR A BODY, THERE IS NO NEED FOR A RESURRECTION!

The body is referred to as a glorified body free of sickness, pain, and limitations.

A resurrected body is the thing that distinguishes Christianity from every other belief.

In order to receive and believe in Jesus for our salvation, we have to believe that His BODY was resurrected after 3 days.

If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.  For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.  Romans 10:9-10

To be CONFIDENT in your salvation, go here>> My Story How God Found Me

A resurrected body is the thing that distinguishes Christianity from every other belief. In order to receive and believe in Jesus for our salvation, we have to believe that His BODY was resurrected after three days.Click to Tweet

WE WILL HAVE REAL THOUGHTS AND CAPABILITIES

The Word suggests our memory won’t be erased but will be free of any painful memories

~ Lazarus, full of sores and forced to beg crumbs at the rich man’s table, found comfort in heaven from his hard life on earth––in the bosom of Abraham (Luke 16: 19-31).

~ The martyrs in the book of Revelation ask God about justice for their murders on earth  (Revelation 6:10).

WE WILL BE INDIVIDUALS KNOWN BY NAME

EACH NAME is written in the book of Life (Philippians 4:3, Revelation 20:12 and more).

EACH is given a robe (Revelation 6:11).

Jesus came back after the resurrection and said: “It is I, myself . . . .” He resumed his previous relationships when he returned.

When Moses and Elijah made a visit to a few of the disciples with Jesus, they were still recognizable as Moses and Elijah. (Matthew 17:1-8).

We will not be different people in heaven, but the same people relocated and transformed!

We will not be different people in heaven, but the same people - relocated and transformed!Click to Tweet

WE WILL ENJOY RELATIONSHIPS AND COMMUNITY IN HEAVEN

Heaven = rich relationships with people and with God

Hell = isolation from others and separation from God

Abraham and Lazarus were together (Luke 16:19-31)

Moses and Elijah returned to earth together to visit with Jesus (Matthew 17:1-8)

Jesus tells the thief on the cross that he will be “with him” in Paradise (Luke 23:43)

WE WILL BE ABLE TO ASK QUESTIONS, WE WILL STILL BE LEARNING

The martyrs ask God a question in heaven (Revelation 6:10).

THE SCRIPTURES SUGGEST AN AWARENESS OF “TIME” IN HEAVEN

Jesus refers to time and dates for all events of the future.

The angels are aware that there are future events yet to unfold.

The martyrs in Heaven ask “How long until there is justice for our murders?”

WE DO NOT BECOME “ANGELS” WHEN WE DIE

Angels, as described in the Word, are separate created beings who have only resided in heaven.  We will remain children of God when we die which is an even higher privilege.

When Jesus was asked if we will marry in heaven, he said, “no you will be ‘like’ the angels (in that you will not marry).”  Even the angels have their own names and identities (Michael, Gabriel, etc.) which further shows everyone has their own identity in heaven.

THERE IS A CONNECTION BETWEEN PEOPLE & EVENTS IN HEAVEN AND PEOPLE AND EVENTS ON EARTH

Heaven’s occupants may not have knowledge of your everyday coming and going, but are aware of the spiritually important events on earth:

Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us (Hebrews 12:1).

A great multitude is rejoicing over God’s judgment on the earth.(Revelation 10:1-5).

There is much rejoicing over one sinner on earth that repents (Luke 15:7).

He promises even more than that.  The heaven that we refer to is the “3rd heaven” that Paul describes in 2 Corinthians 12.  It is the heaven where God currently dwells.  It is the location where believers in Christ currently go when leaving this earth but is referred to as a “temporary place” until the formation of the New Heavens and the New Earth! (2Peter 3: 10-13).

This hope does not completely erase the current pain of losing someone you love.  As one pastor said, “The depth of your grief can be measured equal to the depth of the love that you had for that person.” Even Jesus wept when his friend Lazarus died even though he was about to resurrect him from the dead and return him to his family. But it can keep us from being hopeless and look toward the day when we do get to see them again.

A NOTE FROM ANN:

Susie’s article brings to light what I’ve recently read in The Book of Mysteries by Jonathan Cahn. He compares life on this Earth and heaven to living in the womb and after birth. In the womb we have eyes, ears, a mouth, feet, and hands, although we can’t see, hear, speak, walk and touch; however, we were created to do those things. Just think how much more the difference will be for us to LIVE in heaven compared to our existence down here!

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Heaven A Resurrected Life in a resurrected body with a resurrected Christ on a resurrected earth

M4F How I Learned to Receive by Faith: My Psalm One Man & Egg Dream

My Learning About Faith Story

FEAR got my attention. I became honest with myself and asked the Lord, "What does our future hold?" My story of overcoming fear led me to faith.

After one year at ETSU in Commerce, Texas, a job opened up in Carthage, Texas, Dean of Special Services at Panola Junior College. Jim welcomed this job to pay our mounting debt, so we moved. He worked all day, planned and supervised classes at night, and drove back the 150 miles to Commerce on Saturdays to complete two courses he lacked for his degree. Thus began our adventure in learning what faith was all about.

Jim became a walking zombie, drained of all zeal for living. Since returning from Vietnam, he’d had no downtime: marriage three weeks after returning home, then children, school, and now more school with a very demanding job. He excelled at every challenge, coaching football while a student and seeing them go to bowl games. He started a wrestling program after he started teaching, and took them to state. But now, he had nothing left to give.

FEAR got my attention. I became honest with myself and asked the Lord, “What does our future hold?” Immediately, I could see if things continued as they were, I would be a single mother.

 

Psalm One Man of Faith

My Psalm One Man of Faith

For the first time, I began to diligently pray. I made a firm, quality, conscious choice to pray every day for my husband, even if he was the only person I ever prayed for. A devotional in the book, God Calling, compiled by A. J. Russell, spoke loud and clear to me. It said that when Jesus called His disciples, he had known them for a period of time. Then, one day as He walked along the seashore, He said, “Come, follow Me.”

The Holy Spirit revealed to me that to follow Jesus, to be his disciple, meant being disciplined–disciple being the root word of “discipline.” After asking God for wisdom (James 1:5) in how to pray, I was led to read the first Psalm. I knew this is what I needed to pray. I praised and thanked God every day for my Psalm-One man. I told Jim, “I’ve given you to the Lord. It’s up to Him to help you now.”

At the same time, the words from Evelyn Christenson’s book, Lord Change Me, rang in my head, “Lord, don’t change my husband, don’t change my children, Lord, change me.” Reluctantly, I added that to my prayer.

Whenever there was bad news to bear, I turned my head to washing dishes or folding clothes. Through my tears, I repeated back to God, these memorized Words, claiming Psalm 1:1-3 from the Amplified version of the Bible:

Blessed-happy, fortunate, prosperous and enviable-is the man (my Jim) who walks and lives not in the counsel of the ungodly [following their advice, their plans and purposes], nor stands [submissive and inactive] in the path where sinners walk, not sits down [to relax and rest] where the scornful [and the mockers] gather. But his delight and desire are in the law of the Lord, and on His law-the precepts, the instructions, the teachings of God-he habitually meditates (ponders and studies) by day and by night. And he shall be like a tree firmly planted [and tended] by the streams of water, ready to bring forth his fruit in its season; his leaf also shall not fade or wither, and everything he does shall prosper [and come to maturity].

 

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Believe that You Receive

As I praised the Lord every day for my Psalm-One Man, “a strong tree planted by the water bearing fruit in his season,” Mark 11:23-24 came alive to me, that I would “receive” whatever I “said,” whether it was negative or positive. I realized I’d better make sure what I said day in and day out was in agreement with what I believed God for.
I meditated on James 1:6. It says, “But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That man should not think he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all he does.”

My priority in life became to trust God to “guard my mouth,” (Ps. 141:3) while replacing my words with Psalm 1. As one thing led to another, I discovered 2 Corinthians 10:5 that says we are to bring every ‘thought’ captive to the obedience of Christ. So, to guard my mouth meant I had to guard my thoughts before they could come out of my mouth. Talk about discipline! But, it was worth it.

In a matter of weeks, Jim came home one Saturday, excited and enthusiastic about God’s Word, actually preaching to me. I could hardly believe the change I was witnessing before my eyes of what God was doing, and so quickly. It seems the real estate agent who found the rental home for us had given him some teaching tapes. He listened to them as he traveled to and from Commerce on Saturdays.

“I’ve tried to change you for ten years, and now it’s up to the Lord.” Jim said to me.

Oh really? He said he had already noticed that I was somehow different. He didn’t know about my prayer or of the dream the Lord had given me:

My Egg Dream

faith

The dream was one of those loving disciplines from a heavenly Father that sears the soul without hurting, and you cannot tell anyone. It was one of those hiding-in-the-heart kind of things. Before completely waking one morning, I saw an egg with a soft center. The word WORDS!– like heat from all sides-kept hitting the egg until the yolk was hard.

Then I saw a hand, God’s hand, envelop that egg. God impressed upon me these words, “I can work the impossible. I can take that egg and make it soft again. I can make out of it whatever I want. I can make scrambled eggs, poached, over-easy, or put it with something else to make a tempting dessert.”

I thought, I didn’t know my words were causing Jim’s heart to harden against me, but they were. I’m a pretty laid-back person, but I found my words did not have to be loud or angry to be destructive. Again, God revealed to me that His Word is an attitude book, not just a book of commandments to live by. It’s a book of Love.

Faith is Not Feeling

faith is not feeling

I found that God’s love in us loves as He loves, unconditionally. Jesus gives us love we don’t deserve and have not earned, because He believes and trusts His Father for the best in us. Likewise, He requires the same of us-to believe for the best in others, especially our mate. The Holy Spirit revealed to me if I truly believed to receive my husband as the Psalm-One Man, I had to treat him as though he were already that man, “perceiving as real fact what was not yet revealed to my senses” (Heb. 11:1 Amplified). In other words, faith is not feeling. My actions had to back up what I was receiving from the Lord.

By faith, I began to see Jesus in Jim. I began to direct my actions toward him as though they were toward Jesus. The words from the Bible “as unto the Lord,” grew in meaning for me.

Only then, did things change–the feeling arrived later.

Jim and I discovered that the mystery that brought unity and communication into our marriage and changed it so drastically is grounded in faith. The transformation we were experiencing came from a “mutual submission,” which we later found in the Bible: “Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ. Wives, submit [respect] to your husbands as to the Lord . . . . Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her” (Eph. 5:21, 22, 25 emphasis added).

We found when we prayed about something before talking to each other, we connected. Getting God in the triangle of our relationship brought agreement. If we didn’t agree on a matter, we learned God probably was not in it, and we saved the decision until we agreed-or threw it out. For the first time in ten years, we began to seek the Lord together and to come before Him with our needs for our family and future.

One evening, as we were seated on the couch, Jim prayed, “Lord, I wish I could have just one year to study your Word.” My eyes shot open while he finished praying, and I thought, Oh no, Lord! What’s going to happen now?

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HERE is your exercise: MODULE 4 EXERCISE

This printable is designed to be folded and cut into a 5″ x 7″ handy reminder that can be laminated and put in your Bible. One Side is a Prayer for your Family. Here is your B-E-A-R Facts of Faith Laminate. 

 

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A COUPLE AT DINNER SHOWING A BIBLE STUDY FOR COUPLES IN FAITH FAMILY LIFE AND RELATIONSHIPS