Three Meanings of Heaven
fossores, 5 years ago 0 1 min read 1644
The word Heaven refers to three different things in Scripture:
- Heaven is the sky or, more accurately, the heavens are the skies above the Earth. So, when the psalmist declares the wonders of the heavens and the works of God’s hands, he is referring to the creative power of God who made the skies beautiful.
- Heaven is the place where God is and where God’s purposes are stored up for the world. In this sense, God always dwelt in Heaven, even where there was no Earth. When we die and reside with Christ in Paradise until the resurrection, we are in Heaven in this sense.
- Heaven is the realm of those who share life with God, whether in foretaste now or more fully later on. In this sense, Heaven is the place where God is in control.
Heaven isn’t some other place miles up in the sky. It’s God’s dimension, God’s magnificent home, in which things are precisely the way God wants them to be, and where Creation is saturated with the glory of God. Heaven is God’s space, and Earth is our space, but the two are interlocking spheres of God’s good Creation.
Adapted from Why God Died
Dr. David McDonald is the teaching pastor at Westwinds Community Church in Jackson, MI. The church, widely considered among the most innovative in America, has been featured on CNN.com and in the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, and Time Magazine. David weaves deep theological truths with sharp social analysis and peculiar observations on pop culture. He lives in Jackson with his wife, Carmel, and their two kids. Follow him on twitter (@fossores) or online at fossores.com
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