Posted by: davidbowerkingwood | October 2, 2011

The New Heaven and the New Earth, Part 3

 Parts of the Old are Joined with the New

I suspect all of us who love the Lord Jesus Christ have wondered about heaven; what it will be like, what we will do. The Bible provides hints and establishes principles that can help us put together a speculative picture of what eternity will be like.

For one thing we know that certain components of the old heaven and earth will be carried over into the new. We are told that during the Millennial reign of the Lord Jesus Christ that the New Jerusalem will be present and home to the church. We also know that the millennium will be populated by mortal believers who will still be alive after the second battle of Gog and Magog as described in Revelation 20:7-9.

Although no explanation is given we know that a number of things including the third Heaven, the angelic creation, the New Jerusalem, mortal believers, resurrected saints, all those whose names are not written in the book of life, and the Lake of Fire will all survive the destruction of the old heavens and earth. The Lord does not reveal how this will be done but it shall be done.

We’ve all seen pictures of “heaven” where the inhabitants were sitting around on clouds playing harps; this I believe is a pathetic humanist view not worthy of further mention. The various man-made traditions of heaven range far and wide as one considers the many religions that have been created by man and these too are not worthy of further mention.

In Revelation 21-22 we are given a description of the new earth. One can imagine the difficulty John had describing the end times as it involved future technical developments including devices that were not to be invented for centuries and population growth that could hardly be imagined; if this was difficult how much more so the difficulty of describing eternity which we too have difficulty imagining.

As I’ve mentioned before I believe the Lord has limited His revelation of eternity because it will involve concepts and images for which we have no parallels or vocabulary to describe.

As we move into this area I’ve already acknowledged that I will engage in speculation where I try to create a more complete picture based on Bible revelation and the application of Biblical principles.

In order to clarify the distinction between what is revealed and my speculation I will put my speculation in italics. That way you can easily determine where Biblical revelation ends and my speculation starts.

In Part 4 we will jump in with both feet and explore eternity; this may be more similar to exploring the Pacific Ocean by wading along the beach at San Diego but we’ll do the best we can with the information God has chosen to reveal.


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