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The Real Heaven - What's Heaven Like?, Part 1

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram
The Truth Network Radio
March 17, 2022 6:00 am

The Real Heaven - What's Heaven Like?, Part 1

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram

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March 17, 2022 6:00 am

Imagine all the best things of life here on earth. Now, if possible, expand that by 1 million times. Better than anything you’ve experienced so far. Now, imagine living in that kind of environment forever. No struggle. No disease. No pain. No death. No injustice. No evil. Just the best of the best of the best - on spiritual steroids. That’s heaven. Chip gives us a glimpse of the life that awaits us there.

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Matching all of the best things of life here on earth deepest relationships.

The greatest joy.

The most spectacular experiences now are you ready if possible expand that by 1 million times a meter better than anything you've ever experienced so far in your life. Now imagine living in that kind of environment that's today to get a glimpse of what it's really like welcome to this Edition of Living on the Edge shipping group survival to discipleship program motivating Christians to live like Christian, thanks for joining us as we continue chip series real heaven Bible actually says this message pulls back the curtain to give us a glimpse of heaven like generate some excitement before know a quick reminder as we get started, you will join us here in studio after the teaching to give us some additional insights on this topic you want to stick around for that now is chip with this talk.

What's heaven like the book of Revelation chapter 21 men fascinated mankind fascinated with heaven for centuries, artists.

Whether it's the top of the Sistine Chapel, or whether it's in a cave for you in any culture and people have a very vivid idea of what they think the afterlife is an especially the part of going to heaven in a poets rhyme about it you know Milton wrote this paradise lost, and in fact now if you want to know about heaven. It's become a hot topic if there's ever a time to write a book on heaven if now I have to go to the bookstores that this is Amazon 36 books right now about heaven alone and I just sort of scanned them and there's no original titles like heaven.

Proof of heaven heaven is for real. And then there's a whole genre of, biblical answers to heaven or waking up in heaven. 10 true stories about heaven heaven is for real and so is hell, heaven beyond your wildest expectations. 10. Another 10 different stories about people been there back my journey to heaven. My son went to heaven. My daughter went to heaven. Everyone's going to heaven.

In fact, heaven's will and thinks it's Texas that's a book look I live in Texas is pretty good but is not heaven heaven. I went and saw God, you know. Page after page 90 Vincent heaven 23 minutes in hell 45 minutes somewhere between what's heaven like my gifted daughter went there and she's telling the rest of us not. I'm not exactly sure and I'm not trying to spoof other than it seems like someone went to heaven. Or maybe they went to heaven and they tell us a story and sold a lot of books and afterwards there's a lot of people that went afterwards, here's my point. What you think heaven is like. More important, what information you can trust, and you know God very Merry well have because the apostle Paul did.

He may have some people in these near-death experiences have some very valid experiences but which ones are valid and which ones aren't and what part of the bright shining light or this happened, or that happened, how in the world can you know what it's really like and what's true and what's just a figment of people's imagination or what might even be a delusion, and so were talking about what exactly is heaven like and so to do that.

Please pull out a put some notes and if you pull those out because I did a quick review because it's so different than what we think most of a solution. We seen movies or you know what you know there's always like the cloud machines you got for some reason, you can never see people's feet and heaven. Everyone plays the harp. It's the one instrument everyone wears white. Usually there's always music like right and and for those of you that our worship pastors are great musicians.

There's this one in an honest moment you're thinking like singing like forever and ever and ever. And then, forever and ever and ever. It might be great. I'm just not sure if that's all there is to heaven. I mean the alternative. This is way better than the alternative. But is that really what it's like what I want to tell you is it is not like that are views of heaven are very skewed and un-biblical. It's very real place. In fact, you'll notice that there when you look at heaven is by definition God's abode where God is. There's three eras of man were God's abode in connection is with many different ways.

In the first one you see in Genesis chapters 1 and two, there was a perfect environment on a perfect earth.

God delegates to mankind on this perfect earth to rule and he visits God from heaven.

In this perfect environment with her first parents and he had dreams for them to be co-creators and great relationship and an ideal wonderful environment and they didn't sit around and play harps. There were animals and life.

There was work to do there was creativity and then sin entered into chapters 3 of Genesis through chapter 20 talks about fallen mankind and we have glimmers and taste of what it was like in a sunset or a beautiful mountain of the birth of the baby but it the world that we have now is its tainted's fallen decayed the original earth didn't have tsunamis and tornadoes and earthquakes in but God promises that not just when we die today. This intermediate state. The theologians call it where if you died today you would go, but there will be a new heaven and a new earth that actually heaven will come down on a new earth, and you'll notice resurrected mankind on the new earth were God's original plan sort of its kickback in and the experience is not about clouds and smoke machines in harps and just worship but a city that's been prepared by Jesus called Jerusalem. It comes on a new earth.

It's better and purer and jobs in life and culture and music, and scientific inventions and galaxies in the way life was always intended to be with one another and with God is the heaven. The Bible talks about it.

So what you need understand is it's very interesting as you study all of Scripture that will talk about heaven. What happens when we die before the new heaven and new earth, but God started where there's a place where he wants to be with this people. That's the theme of Scripture. This creator God that spoke all the world into existence. It's about relationship. He wants to be with his people at one time he came and visited and walked the pre-incarnate Christ would talk and have conversation and share in a perfect environment and love and acceptance. He cared so much that after sin, he came and lived a perfect life and demonstrated to us by his life and his words what God is like and promise to prepare place and then he died to break that curse and pay for the sin of all people of all time and then rose from the dead and offers to whosoever will believe to be ushered with him forever. And then the new heaven and the new earth. It's he will be our God and he'll be with us and literally no separation so the earth is central real life concrete real people doing things. Gifts.

And then there's this correlation between what we do now and how it impacts our experience in heaven. Still bit different than some of the movies we've seen in some of the thoughts that just have been real vague and so what I wanted to take you on a journey and tell you what heaven is like. So are you ready I want you to assume two things.

The first one you may not have to assume the second one. I sure hope everyone has to assume assumption number one regardless of your spiritual background. Today we have all kind of people come and visit the church. I want you to assume that you are a follower a believer in Christ at a certain date a certain time you turn from your sin, you receive Jesus as your Savior's Spirit lives within you. So then the moment you would die. You would be ushered in God's presence.

The second thing I want you to assume is that kind of right now will to sorta make this the moment right here in about three seconds, you can have a massive heart attack. What would happen to you immediately after that massive heart attack. One minute later and until all comes together.

You ready can you assume that with me and what you can see is what the Bible teaches. Heaven is like in this, what the theologians call the intermediate state for your writing. You can pull it out of Munich to get to some notes number one the first things can happen is Angels are going to usher your soul to heaven. Luke 1622 says now the poor man died and was carried away by angels to Abraham's bosom and the rich man also died and was buried. So what we find is there's this role of angels is the moment your bodies there. Your soul and spirit, and angels were usher you into heaven, you can escort. In fact, if you read anything about the awk Indians were five missionaries many years ago that died.

Jim Elliott and five others were slain Nate St. and they were the fiercest tribe. They had just their lifestyle was one of murder. They murdered all the other tribes. They murdered one another. It was actually probably is evil.

A group of people in the face of the earth and these five missionaries began to pray for him had a heart form. They flew into the jungle to drop gifts. Eventually they they went down to meet them. I try to help them and they were all killed. This is a wild story.

If you have read the Jim Elliott store, you should should read it. Their wives are ready for this, their wives after their husbands died got together and said our husbands can't waste their life, their wives, then went back to that jungle to reach that same tribe, and eventually there was this miraculous revival that tribe came to Christ, the actual people who speared them to death were living. And then as they became Christians begin to grow. They begin to tell the story of that day and how after they killed them. They had this weird experience of there was all the singing in the trees and these white figures that came over the bodies and ushered into the sky.

See God really wants to be with you and cares about you and is a believer and follower of Jesus. The first thing that happened is you can escort to heaven. The second thing to happen is you immediately or in God's presence. Second Corinthians 5, the apostle Paul says this therefore being always of good courage, and knowing that while were at home in the body were absent from the Lord. The body visible body for we walk by faith and not by sight. Where of good courage, I say and prefer rather to be absent from the body and to be at home with the Lord to the Bible teaches that one minute after you die your ushered by angels. There's no stops. There's no soul sleep. There's no intermediate sort of places you go at any time, you were immediately ushered into the presence of God, you will see God.

You will see Jesus third thing that happens is that you are conscious and in command of your faculties, thinking, feeling, speech in memories. We go back to the very words of Jesus describing this rich man who finds himself separated from God. In this great chasm and then the beggar who was a follower of Christ and they can think they feel they dialogue, they recognize one another there aware of their past. So when you die as a believer is not like you had this disembodied spirit that's floating all around and you don't know what's happening. You are conscious you think your personality, your soul, the real you is in presence of God. Fourth, you participate in magnificent worship with angels and believers before the throne of God hears and ask you to do the work with me. I don't want to take my word for it. I want you to turn to Revelation chapter 4. There's two big things.

I want you to get this is happening in heaven right now. The second is this is not what heaven is like forever when you read this passage, at least for my early years as a Christian. The first decade or so, I would read this couple passage is not that I guess this is all there is and God find out it's it's magnificent. It's amazing but is just part of it. Are you ready Revelation chapter 4. This is happening in heaven right now.

So if someone you loved has died. This is part of their experience.

It's not all of it, but this is part of their experience and as the Angels have taken you into God's presence. You have your faculties, your feelings, your thoughts, you know what happened in the past, and here's where you're at.

Chapter 4 after this I looked, John is giving a snapshot of heaven by Jesus in there before me was a door standing open in heaven. And the voice I heard first speaking to me was like a trumpet, it's a come up here and I will show you what must take place after this at once. I was in the spirit and there before me was a throne in heaven with someone sitting on and the one who sat there was had the appearance of jasper and carnelian in a rainbow, resembling an emerald encircling the throne and surrounding the throne were 24 other thrones, and seated on them were 24 elders. They were dressed in white and had crowns of gold on their heads and from the throne came flashes of lightning and rumblings and peals of thunder before the throne, seven lamps were blazing. Is there a word that seems to be repeated.

So far, throne throne throne what what do people do. From thrones. They rule very first snapshot of heaven there is someone in control of everything, not just this little planet, the galaxies everything in its overwhelming and notice in the center round the throne are four living creatures, and they were covered with eyes in front and a back ice perception soaking in and their flying and notice what it what are they saying, holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was and is and is to come. We learned not number one. God is holy.

Number two is all-powerful and three he's eternal peace for ever and ever. He's the uncreated one.

He's the infinite reference point. He's the center and the focus of all of life, past, present and future holy is he's not like any of us. He's not a ramp.more loving, kind of a father or person. There is no category for him. That's what holy means separated different and you will bow before him and you will have a simultaneous experience of being drawn and love and being overwhelmed and afraid all at the same time because of his great power and holiness and his affection for you whenever the four living creatures give glory and honor and thanks to him, sits on the throne, and to him, lives forever. The 24 elders would fall down before him and they sit on the throne and they worship him who lives forever and ever. And then something happens about their life and what they did what they achieved and I don't know if you've ever gone to Leica a special party or something is for someone that you kinda know and and it's one of those deals where you don't know what are you supposed to bring a gift or not.

And so you think you probably shouldn't, and then you get there. That's a pretty important person and everyone else is getting gifts to this person and you realize you don't have one, you know that feeling you been there. That's what people who have died ushered in the presence of God. They were genuinely forgiven and saved by faith basically spent most all of their life living for themselves. There are no rewards. They have nothing to give. But these elders do. Paul talks about crowns and rewards and this opportunity and they worship skipping down the chapter 5 the something else in the center of the throne. Verse six. Then I saw a Lamb looking Zeta been slain, standing in the center of the throne, encircled by the four living creatures and elders and it seven horns and seven eyes, which of the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth, and he came in he took the scroll from the right hand of him who sat on the throne and of as he took at the four living creatures and the 24 elders fell down before the Lamb, speaking of Christ. Each one had a harp and they were holding golden bowls full of incense and this was the prayers of the saints, and now they sing in the picture of Jesus at the center of the throne at the center of worship who opens the scrolls. You are worthy to take the scroll to open the seals because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God wherefrom America know every tribe, language people and nation. You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God and notice the future and they will reign on where earth. This is a worship service. This is amazing in the negative, say, worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and there's this worship service. I want you to know Bam heart attack. Angels usher presence of God awareness you get you come before there's a throne in your overwhelmed and then as you read this more carefully. There's thousands and then tens of thousands of angels and anything you ever thought about God gets clarified and he is holy and is majestic and he's awesome. He's powerful and you recognize thrones are where people rule and every ounce of where you ruled your own life and I ruled mine every ounce of her you had responsibility that this is gotta be that way I can make this or that happened all that just gets faded out and you realize I had some responsibility. I am now in the presence of the one who is the ruler over all who was sovereign, and holy and there's a level of beauty to its breathtaking and a level of power that causes you, and apart from your relationship and being covered with the blood of Christ and being forgiven here an absolute all in ecstasy at the same time and that's part of what happens but that's not all of heaven. That's what's happening right now for your where to some degree the activities and events on the earth.

If you'll just look at chapter 6, same book Revelation were going to stay in Revelation, you are aware in this worship service. It doesn't go on forever. In fact, later talks about. There's a break, they take a break for a half-hour but you're aware of at least of some of the things are happening on the earth. Hebrews 1112 talk about were living this life before a great cloud of witnesses, but notice verses nine and 10 of chapter 6 when he opened the angel open for Seo I saw under the altar the souls of those who been slain, martyred because of the word of God and the testimony to maintain and they called out a loud voice, how long, sovereign Lord, holy and true, until the you judge the inhabitants of the earth and avenge their blood.

Then each of them was given a white robe and they were told. Wait a little while until the number of their fellow servants and brothers who were to be killed as they would be completed three things you might notice number one the souls under the altar the word soul, we get our word psychology Gordis in Greek is psyche.

It can to it means the immaterial part of us, but also often refers to whole person you know how many souls were saved or lost, or and so whatever the real you is the real you is there notice second that they're closed with a white robe so they're not disembodied spirit. Somehow there's a covering and a robe in the notice there. There they know something because they're looking down on earth and saying how long the Lord is. This can happen. The only way you can ask how long is it there's some awareness of what's happening on the earth. Now we don't know how much, but we know to some degree that there's some things happening.

Yes, very interesting. We really do care about who knows what we do it in nature and our behavior really is when certain people are watching us.

We behave in certain ways and when other people are watching us and we don't think anybody's watching. We behave in certain ways and and intellectually. It's really interesting. I mean I'm with you on this is that we all know that God is watching all the time knows the secrets and motives of our heart. But somehow we sort of put that aside and in sort of forget that happens I member is a a young man in high school. My sister was one of the most amazing people I've ever met.

I did not know at the time that she was a Christian she had a friend and she become a Christian like her sophomore year. All I knew was when I came home. She had interest in my life.

We took some classes together.

She's only about a year and four months older but she was like my hero, she was the nicest, kindest person and I mean just sheet you ever have someone who thinks way more of you than you know is true and you unconsciously find yourself trying to live up to it and I can tell you multiple times in high school I did a party and there'd be some dope and I think it's was anything like what would my parents think it wasn't even like you know my going to mess up my body for the basketball team. It was I had this picture of all I just could see my sister punky's eyes going hold ship. I can't believe you would ever do that if you had that experience. Did you realize that it well may be that your mom that is in heaven.

Your dad this heaven or brother or sister. They may be this great cloud of witnesses, it really has some impact. Maybe if we thought that more instead of having to some ethereal floating around people playing on electric harps. What are some people that really mattered were aware of at least some of the things were happening. Wonder how that would impact how we live. The next thing that happens because what you find is that Moses was recognizable and that the passing there. Luke nine 2836 coming member of the Transfiguration. When Moses and Elijah came Peter didn't say gotcha one who these guys are.

We were able to recognize and know what's going on with people.

You'll know when you meet your mom intact at least one thing of all these different books of people who come back one of the common things is they meet people that were strong followers of Christ. You'll recognize them in there's relationship and they talk about things as interest gives me actually great hope. Part one chips message what's heaven like right back with his application for this teaching from a series the real heaven with the Bible actually says or sat down and thought about heaven.

I mean what it'll really be like to have a new body to reunite with loved ones and be in the very presence of God. The fact is, many Christians are excited enough about heaven, which just shows how little we understand what awaits us through this three-part series chip uncovers what God wants us to know about heaven. The indescribable beauty, fulfilling relationships and what were actually going to do. There will also dispel the myths about heaven and encourage us to actually look forward to returning the let me encourage you to really dig deep into the series, the real heaven, whether that's through chips book the MP3s or the small group video study for complete details on all of our resources go to LivingontheEdge.org or call AAA 333-6003 that's AAA 333-6003, or LivingontheEdge.org hapless nurse Special offers chip as I listen to this program. I thought there are countless people listening right now who have real needs as Living on the Edge continues to create new programming and develop resources that meet those needs.

The expenses of the ministry are a monthly issue so take a moment if you would and talk to those who've considered partnering with us before, but just haven't made that commitment in a day really only about 2% of all the people that listen to partner with us financially in any way. I think sometimes is because they just don't think what I could do would make a difference but I just want to encourage some of you that feel like you know hey you know what God's really using this my life but I'm just not in a position maybe you could do something really small. But God could take your small gift into something really big with it. So thanks so much and appreciate anything. God leads you to do. Thanks, Chip will as you prayerfully consider your role with this ministry. I want to remind you that every gift is significant when you partner with Living on the Edge you multiply our efforts and resources in ways that only God can do to send a gift call us at AAA 333-6003 or go to LivingontheEdge.org that's AAA 333-6003, or LivingontheEdge.org hapless nurse tap donate chip in this program you really emphasize the fact that heaven and hell are real places, and honestly as I heard you talk about that. I thought of those people in my life who are believers, as I'm sure many of our listeners did to. So would you give us some advice for how we can start having some meaningful conversations about the subject will Dave yes I did talk about two places and pretty graphically and very specifically and quite honestly I don't think Christians are hearing much about heaven and for not hearing much about heaven were hearing almost nothing about hell and I think we have so been overwhelmed with this sort of fear of you know a sermon that was given you know hundred years ago.

You know sinners in the hands of an angry God actually well over 100 years ago and we so want to be careful not to preach fire and brimstone, you and all that.

I think what's happened is we have become smugly and arrogantly, intellectually, politically correct and we don't want to bring it up because we act like what will people think of us if we talk about a literal devil and hell, and it's interesting to me that I don't how intellectual Jesus was, but he was like really sold on it was a very real place and he was sold on it so much that he came and took on human flesh and died for you died for me, died for everyone that he actually right now is creating that other place called heaven and I just think it makes us uncomfortable and let's just be human about it, but the reason you teach God's word is the truth sets people free. The truth frames new perspective. The truth is what God wants and for many of us right now. They're probably thinking about a family member or coworker, or a really good friend and as far as we know they're not on their way to heaven and and because that's so disturbing. I mean, it may mean that I'm not other people for me. I want to push this down and not think about heaven very much not think about hell at all, but I got news for you. All of our friends. All of her family there going to die and after they die is appointed unto man once to die, and then judgment. Here's the question so what we do about what are we going to do that's different and what I would say is you may not be comfortable giving anybody the message that I just gave them so give them my say you know this guy was talking about this and it really stirred my heart and I was think about you and me would you listen to this will grab coffee later.

For others, maybe you with your family to get together or you with a couple guys or gals and watch the DVD. I mean they've produced it in a way that it be like oh wow heaven's really real and it'll give you boldness that you long to have. So let us help you help your friends in a great way to take advantage of the resources trip just mentioned is with the chip and remap you'll find the series there, along with many more all free. Let God's word for into you in such a way that you get perspective and the freedom he longs for you to enjoy in him: selects time. This is Dave really saying thanks for listening to this Edition of Living on the Edge


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