This isn’t a perfect analogy, but it occurs to me that God has made Creation like a duplex. It’s a good home for two different kinds of people. You’ve got Heaven on one side—the place where God lives and in which all the higher order of angelic beings reside—and Earth on the other. And though the two are right next to each other, and even share some of the same foundation, and even though we can sometimes hear the noise from next door and piece together what’s happening over there, they are not the same. Not yet. Heaven is like the control room for Earth. God’s house is the only one with a thermostat, or an HVAC, and God pays all the bills and makes sure the lights stay on.

We often make the mistake of thinking Earth is some kind of training ground for Heaven, and while it’s true they are related, God’s long-term plans don’t include having everyone vacate our side of the duplex to move in next door. Rather, God has it in mind to create an entirely new home in which we all get to live together. That’s the New Heaven and the New Earth John tells us about in Revelation, and it begins when the walls that separate the existing Heaven and Earth come down and the two dimensions will be fused together at last.

We don’t have to spend eternity in a duplex.

Adapted from Why God Died