Presentation on theme: "2 Isnt it possible that one reason many people are not excited about Heaven is due to their misconception of what Heaven will be like? –I believe this."— Presentation transcript:
2 Isnt it possible that one reason many people are not excited about Heaven is due to their misconception of what Heaven will be like? –I believe this is true. It is one of the reasons I have been teaching all these lessons about heaven. Introduction
3 The most common era is to envision Heaven as some vague, nebulous, ethereal non-location – somewhere way up there. –When in fact, the eternal Heaven will be on the New Earth – a resurrected Earth. –Heaven will be a resurrection of the paradise that was Eden, with all of us in resurrected bodies that cannot decay or die.
4 The New Jerusalem will come down and rest on the New Earth, and the throne of God will be there. –It will literally be Heaven on Earth. –All sin and unrighteousness will be removed, and we will enjoy pleasures evermore in the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ our King of Kings. –Heaven WILL NOT ever be boring!
5 A common misconception about Heaven surfaced in an episode of Star Trek, The Next Generation. –A member of the undying Q Continuum longed for the end of his existence. –Why? Because he complained, everything that could be said and done had already been said and accomplished.
6 His complaint was that now there could only be repetition and boredom. –The character said, For us, the disease is immortality. The atheistic science fiction writer Isaac Asimov wrote: –I dont believe in an afterlife, so I dont have to spend my whole life fearing hell, or fearing heaven even more...
7 –…For whatever the tortures of hell, I think the boredom of heaven would be even worse. –How unfortunate for these science fiction writers that their concept of Heaven is completely wrong. How sadder still that some Christians also believe the myth that Heaven will be boring.
8 Yes, even among Christians, it is a prevalent myth that Heaven will be boring. –Many cannot envision anything beyond strumming a harp and floating on a cloud for eternity. According to Rev. 13:6b (NIV), this is succumbing to Satans strategy:
9 –…to blaspheme God, and to slander His name and His dwelling place and those who live in heaven. –By making Heaven sound boring, Satan has made it sound like an unattractive alternative to Hell. But, Heaven will not be a place of boredom for those who live there.
10 What Will We Do To Avoid Boredom? Some are so misguided that they say, Id rather be having a good time in Hell than to be bored in Heaven. –They imagine Hell as a place where theyll hang around, party and joke with friends.
11 A righteous form of such activity will happen on the New Earth, (the Eternal Heaven), but not in Hell. –Hell is described vividly in the Bible as a place of torment and isolation, where friendship and good times do not exist. –I mean, consider that Satan will be in Hell.
12 –According to Jesus in John 10:10, Satans history is that he steals, kills, and destroys. But everything good, enjoyable, refreshing, fascinating, and interesting is derived from God. –Without God there would be nothing interesting to do. David wrote in Psa. 16:11 (NKJV):
13 –You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore. (emphasis mine). –In the presence of God, there is nothing but fullness of joy, and pleasure that will last forever! In his book, Things Unseen, pastor Mark Buchanan asks:
14 –Why wont we be bored in Heaven? Because it is one place where both impulses – to go beyond, and to go home – are perfectly joined and totally satisfied. Its the one place where were constantly discovering – where everything is always fresh and the possessing of a thing is as good as the pursuing of it – …
15 –…and yet where we are fully at home – where everything is as it ought to be and where we find, undiminished, that mysterious something that we never found down here … And this life-long melancholy that hangs on us, this wishing we were someone else somewhere else, vanishes too. …
16 –…Our craving to go beyond is always and fully realized. Your yearning for home is once and for all fulfilled. The ahh! Of deep satisfaction and the aha of delighted surprise meet, and they kiss. (Mark Buchanan, Things Unseen (2002) p. 76. Our belief that Heaven will not be boring opposes the heresy some hold, that God is boring.
17 –There is no greater nonsense! God is anything but boring! Our desire for pleasure and the experience of joy come directly from God. –For example, it was God who made our taste buds, dopamine, the sex drive, and the nerve endings that convey pleasure to our brains.
18 Likewise, our imaginations and our capacity for joy and exhilaration were made by the very God some accuse of being boring. –It is arrogant to believe that human beings came up with the idea to enjoy pleasure and have fun.
19 Still others say, It would be boring to be good all the time. –That is a concept that is built on the false assumption that sin is the only thing that is exciting and that righteousness is boring. –This too is a lie from the devil. His most basic strategy, as used on Adam and Eve is to make us believe that sin brings fulfillment.
20 In reality, sin doesnt make life interesting; it makes life empty. –Sin doesnt expand life; it shrinks it. In fact, it is sins emptiness that eventually leads to boredom. –King Solomon, who had wealth beyond anything we could imagine became bored.
21 II Kings 11:3a tells us that: –He had 700 wives, princesses, and 300 concubines… –In the Bible, the word concubine denotes a lawful wife, but she was of a secondary rank. –She differed from a proper wife in that she was not married by solemn stipulation, but only betrothed.
22 –A concubine brought no dowry with her, and had no share in the government of the family. –Quite frankly, a concubine was chosen for her attractiveness, and supplied her owner with sexual gratification. That was her sole function in most cases. –Concubines were permitted provided they were taken care of.
23 –A concubine was like a mistress in todays terms, except that she was a fixture in the family. –In todays terms, Solomon had 700 legal wives, and he shacked up with another 300 women. –Yet with all his wealth, wisdom and women, he became bored. The Message paraphrases Solomon in Eccles. 1:8-9 thus:
24 –Everything's boring, utterly boringno one can find any meaning in it. Boring to the eye, boring to the ear. What was will be again, what happened will happen again. There's nothing new on this earth. Sins emptiness inevitably led Solomon to declare life to be boring.
25 But, when there is fulfillment, when there is beauty, when we see God as He truly is – an endless reservoir of fascination – boredom becomes impossible. –Certainly sin is exciting – for a season (Heb. 11:25) but it doesnt last. And, sin is certainly not the only source of excitement.
26 Those who believe that excitement cant exist without sin are misguided. –Thats like drug addicts who are convinced that without their drugs they cant live happy lives. –But, as everyone else can see, the drugs make their lives empty and leave them miserable.
27 –The repetitive need to take drugs is because addicts can no longer feel euphoria without the drugs. Freedom from sin permits freedom to be what God intended. –God provides much greater joy in everything. –In Heaven we will be filled – as Psa. 16:11 describes it – with joy and eternal pleasures.
28 Why Would Anyone Think We Would Be Bored in Heaven? One preacher told the story of an elderly gentleman he led to Christ. –The old gentleman asked a Christian employee in his care center: Will we have fun in Heaven?
29 Oh no! the woman replied, appearing dismayed that he had even asked. –This was probably not an uncommon reply that many would give to the same question. –Why would this Christian respond like she did? Because of the false assumptions of Christoplatonism.
30 This believer, and many like her, instinctively link fun with sin, and boredom with holiness. –But this could not be more wrong. God has promised that we will rejoice and experience endless pleasures in Heaven. –Someone said that no one could enjoy golf in Heaven because it would be boring, always hitting holes in one.
31 But this assumes that everyones skills will be equal and incapable of further development. –I rather believe this will not be the case. Just as our minds will expand in knowledge, our resurrection bodies could also develop greater skills.
32 Another big reason people believe Heaven will be boring is that their current Christian lives are boring. –But thats not Gods fault, it is the product of the religion of men. –Many Christians are trapped in religious Christianity, and their lives are fenced in by man-made rules.
33 They are taught, and believe, that if a person has fun, or enjoys any activity that does not take place at church, that they are sinning. –Their entire Christian walk is dictated by dos and donts. As a result, they cant conceive of Heaven being any different, and the prospect is boring and unattractive.
34 But Heaven will be exhilarating. –We will be in the presence of the most exciting and creative One who created the entire Universe. –We will be continually learning and applying what we have learned for the good of Gods Kingdom. –People who love God crave His companionship and that of other believers.
35 How exciting and UN-boring Heaven will be with all its opportunities to learn, enjoy fellowship, explore, and discover new abilities and new things! –Too many think of themselves as fun-loving, and of God as a humorless killjoy. –But they couldnt be more wrong.
36 We didnt invent humor and laughter, God did. God built into us the capacity to enjoy humor. –Prov. 15:13a says: A merry heart maketh a cheerful countenance:... –Prov. 15:15b (NIV) says: … the cheerful heart has a continual feast.
37 – And Proverbs 17:22a says: A merry heart doeth good like a medicine:… –In the Amplified Bible, Prov. 17:22a says, A happy heart is good medicine and a cheerful mind works healing,.. Without doubt, God created humor, joy and pleasure.
38 These qualities alone argue against our becoming bored. –Most of us can picture being happy for a day or a week, but happiness for all eternity is hard to envision. –Thats because we have never experienced it. –We think of life here under the Curse as normal because its all weve ever known.
39 Therefore, millions and millions of years of happiness is inconceivable to us. –Because that level of happiness is not possible in this sinful world. –Yet in Heaven (the New Earth), unending happiness will be our eternal state.
40 What Will Our Work Be Like? Another reason Heaven wont be boring is that we will all have meaningful work to do. –On the New Earth, God will give us renewed minds and marvelously indestructible resurrection bodies.
41 We will be complete people, with boundless energy and vision. –Our work in Heaven, whatever it may consist of, will be designed to fit our individual aptitude and abilities. –It will be the work we can do best; work that will give the fullest expression of the abilities in us.
42 Even in this sin-cursed world we catch glimpses of how work can be enriching if it is something we love to do. –Daddy Lane used to say that if a man was being paid for something he loved to do he was the luckiest of men, because it wasnt like work to him.
43 Work helps us build relationships and leads to the satisfaction of a job well done. –Work stretches us in ways that make us smarter, wiser, and more fulfilled. Eph. 2:10 (NIV) tells us: –For we are Gods workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
44 God created us to do good works, and the fact that He did will not cancel that purpose when we are resurrected to inhabit the new Universe. –We will be a resurrected people at work in a vibrant society on a resurrected Earth. –We will work for God, helping run the Universe (cf. Luke 19:17-19).
45 We are told that we will serve God in Heaven (Rev. 7:15; 22:3). –Service is active, not passive. –It involves fulfilling responsibilities. –It requires the expending of energy. –All of these are characteristic of work.
46 Work in Heaven wont be frustrating or fruitless. –Instead, it will involve lasting accomplishment, unhindered by decay and fatigue, and enhanced by unlimited resources. I believe we will approach our work in Heaven with the same enthusiasm we now approach our favorite leisure activity.
47 In Heaven, we will govern under Christ, with leadership and authority. –The implication is that we will be given specific work responsibilities by our leaders, and we will delegate responsibilities to those under our leadership.
48 Effective work generally involves setting goals, devising plans, sharing ideas and accomplishing these. –Our best work here – when everything clicks and turns out like we planned or better; when we get everything done on time, and when we enjoy doing it, are a small foretaste of work in Heaven.
49 A disembodied existence, plunking on a harp and floating around bodiless on a cloud would be boring. –But the reality of our resurrected lives in Heaven puts this idea to death.
50 In Closing Imagine, for example, the animals that zoologists will be able to research. –Or, consider the flowers that botanists will be able to study. –Gifted astronomers and explorers could go from star system to star system, galaxy to galaxy, studying the wonders of Gods creation.
51 Those who think that life on the New Earth will be boring, just arent reading the same Bible that I read. –All thoughts that we will be bored in Heaven do not fit what the Bible says about Heaven. –The last thing we should expect to be in Heaven is bored. End of Lesson
52 Work can help us build relationships and help us to gain the satisfaction of a job well done. –Work stretches us in ways that make us smarter, wiser, and more fulfilled. Eph. 2:10 (NIV) tells us: –For we are Gods workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.