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The Real Heaven - What's Heaven Like?, Part 2

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram
The Truth Network Radio
March 18, 2022 6:00 am

The Real Heaven - What's Heaven Like?, Part 2

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram

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March 18, 2022 6:00 am

Are you tired of injustice and evil? Are you fed up with all the suffering that happens to good and godly people? If we’re honest, we wonder if the scales will ever be balanced - if God really cares. Chip shares the good news that this isn’t all there is. Justice is coming. And the life you have longed for is yours for the taking. Starting now.

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Are you tired of the injustice and the evil in the world? Ever simply just get fed up with all the suffering and the bad things that happen to good and godly people? If you struggle with this like I do at times, I've got some good news for you.

There's a day when everything gets put right, and we're going to talk about that today. Living on the Edge is an international discipleship ministry featuring the daily Bible teaching of Chip Ingram. I'm Dave Fruley, and we're in the middle of Chip's series, The Real Heaven, What the Bible Actually Says. Now before we get started, if you're new to Living on the Edge or just want to learn more about us, go to livingontheedge.org. There you'll find tons of resources on a wide range of topics and countless programs for you to enjoy.

Or if you prefer, the Chip Ingram app is also a great way to get plugged into. If you have a Bible, open it now to the book of Revelation chapter 22, and let's join Chip for part two of his message, What's Heaven Like? I've already lost both my parents. My wife's had cancer.

She came through it. But I've had some really big windows of losing people that really, really, really matter. Early on, one of my sons was in an emergency room, and we didn't know if he would make it. I want to tell you that the hope that God gives to us in heaven and Christians is this isn't all there is. There really is a place where you will be reunited, and it gives you tremendous perspective and tremendous hope.

We do grieve, and there is great loss, but our whole lives don't have to fall apart when you're a follower of Christ. And so, bam, the heart attack happens. You're ushered by angels. Immediately you're in your God's presence.

You're conscious. You participate in this great worship. You kind of see some things that are happening on earth.

You don't know everything. You meet some people. You understand that they see you. You see them.

You know one another. And then seventh, you'll be joined by all living Christians when Jesus raptures the church from the earth to be judged for rewards at the beam of seed. St. Corinthians 5.10 says, For we will all appear before the judgment seed of Christ. And that's not for your sin. That's been forgiven. That's for what did you do with your life?

Rewards. And then, fast forward, I'm giving you a quick overview. There's a lot that happens between chapter 6 and chapter 19, but let's go all the way over to chapter 19, because this is something that Jesus talked about with his disciples. In chapter 19, there's a thing called the marriage supper of the Lamb. So, shortly before, the context is God's judgment is occurring. We're up in heaven. The tribulation's coming to an end. There's going to be this great battle called Armageddon. But before that, chapter 19, there's what's called the marriage supper of the Lamb. All the New Testament Christians are going to now, the bride with the bridegroom.

So we pick it up, chapter 19. After this, I heard the sound like the roar of a great multitude in heaven. Hallelujah, salvation and glory and power belong to our God. For true and just are his judgments.

And he's talking about those judgments. And then he skips down to verse 6. He says, Then I heard the great sound like a multitude, like the roar of rushing waters, like loud peals of thunder and shouting, Hallelujah. For the Lord our God, our mighty reigns, let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory. For the wedding of the Lamb has come and his bride has made herself ready. Fine linen bright and clean was given to her to wear.

Fine linen stands for the righteous acts of the saints. And then the angel said to me, Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb. And he added, These are the true words. And so we have this experience with God. And you know, again, we get things so mystical. Jesus said to the disciples, I'm going to come back. There's going to be this time. I won't eat of it again until in my kingdom. And what we're going to find is shortly after this meal, and I don't know what it's going to be like, but it's got to be great.

He's going to come and he's going to do something that down deep in your heart, in my heart and everyone's heart, we really, really, really, really want to see happen. And it's our greatest frustration. And yet when we talk about it, we often have this sort of intellectual thing that pushes back away from it. Because what happens now is that we always talk very rightly about God's compassion and God's love. But God is just.

The definition of justice is people get what they deserve. Retribution. And all through Revelation, I wish I had time to just go through chapter by chapter by chapter by chapter, and God extends and says, Will you let me forgive you? Will you let me forgive you? Will you let me forgive you? No, come on, come on, let me forgive you. And people stiff arm, stiff arm, stiff arm, stiff arm, stiff arm, and not only stiff arm, but they're evil. And they attack the things of God. What's happening now? What is it? 26 million kids and people are slaves in our world. I mean, can you imagine? We talk about education and technology and how mankind has made progress.

And yet in the last century, 50 million people in Russia were killed by Stalin. I was with a friend who went and did some missionary work that was, I mean, you talk about outside the box, there's a place in Africa where there's a lake and people, they come silently in the night across this lake and they steal the kids out of these huts and homes and they go back over the lake and they're near a border. And then they sell all the kids. You talk about a mission strip.

He got with a group of people that go back over and they steal them back. And it's gruesome and it's hard and they're armed and people die. Here's what I want you to get. There's evil. There's something built into our heart because you're made in the image of God about justice. I want you to see that as you're in heaven talking with family, after you've enjoyed an amazing meal with your Savior, you await God's judgment of the earth at the end of the tribulation. You will be bodily resurrected and then you will reign and judge with Christ for a thousand years on the earth.

Notice chapter 20. Are you still with me, Revelation? It says, I saw thrones that were seated and those that have been given authority to judge. And I saw the souls of those that have been beheaded because of their testimony for Jesus and because the word of God. They had not worshiped the beast or his image and not received the mark on their foreheads or on their hands. And notice this, they came to life and they reigned with Christ a thousand years. The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were over. This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy are those who have a part in the first resurrection.

The second death has no power over them. But they will be priests of God and of Christ and will, might circle the word, reign with Him for a thousand years. God made promises and unlike us, when God makes a promise, whether you read it in the Old or New Testament, He's going to keep it. He made this outrageous promise to David about a descendant of yours will be on the throne forever.

He made this outrageous promise regardless of the geopolitical issues that happen in the world to Abraham about a piece of land and about a nation and what He would do for that nation and those Jews and those people, not just by ethnic background but by heart relationship of what He would do for them. And Jesus comes back and you can read a little bit before because it's harsh and there's judgment and there's a battle and He makes everything right. And then for a thousand years on this earth, there's those people who made it through that. There's us New Testament saints.

There's Old Testament saints. And for a thousand years, all those promises and all those rewards, it's lived out. And I read this and I didn't grow up reading the Bible so I grew up as a real skeptic. And sometimes as I early on at least read the Bible, there was things that puzzled me like God, I mean obviously I don't need to know. But I mean why a thousand years? Why Christ?

Why on the earth? Okay, I get fulfill your promises. I get that but just sort of from a philosophical standpoint. And I thought to myself, my parents were school teachers and around our table it was education every night. You pushed in the plates and great books, great authors, what was happening in the news.

That was just what they did at our house and so I grew up with all that. And a part of the educational system is that if we could just educate everyone in all the world. If people just could think rightly, if we could create an environment that's healthy and unpolluted both intellectually and emotionally and the environment. If all of that, see man is basically good and what we need to do is have enough time, enough technology and enough education to help people learn to do what is right. Then mankind would really end well.

That's been a core philosophy of why we do what we do and what we've used basically our technology in every generation is to kill more and more and more people. And us try to be on the throne and be in control. And it's interesting at least from a philosophical standpoint, you have a thousand years in a perfect environment where Jesus is king and he rules. And people who came out of that, they marry, they have children. Satan is locked up so there's no evil for a thousand years and at the end of a thousand years God releases Satan and demonic activity for one last time to tempt. And it is amazing, a significant population out of a perfect environment with the best education and the great relationships with a thousand year track record.

Turn away from the God who loves them to sit on their own throne and rule their own lives. And I just thought, isn't it like God just to say, you know what, let me explain to you the heart of man. Remember Jesus when people were asking him some questions and he denied them, he said, no, no, you don't understand. I understand what's in the heart of man. So we all basically think we're a little bit better than we are.

In fact, we think we're a lot better than we are. And yet you find people that have been in desperate situations and you read of stories when under the right circumstances and amazing duress it is almost unthinkable what the human heart can do. You read the stories of what happened in Nazi Germany and we all think that's those other evil people. That's in the heart of human beings when threatened and control and power and greed. God says, I'm going to deal with that.

In fact, there's going to be justice. In fact, finally, you will witness the justice of God at the judgment of Satan, angels and the wicked dead at the great white throne. And there's a cataclysmic end to it all. And this is what he says, then I saw a great white throne and him was seated on it. Earth and sky fled from his presence.

There was no place for them. And I saw the dead, both great and small, standing before the throne and the books were opened and another book was opened that was called the book of life. And the dead were judged according to what they had done, recorded in the books. And the sea gave up its dead. Death and Hades gave up its dead. Each person was judged according to what he had done. And then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death and if anyone's name was not found in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

And, you know, it's interesting. We've gotten so sophisticated and I hear people talk about, you know, those old days somewhere, somehow, where people talk about, you know, damnation and hell and people don't talk about that anymore. The Bible does.

But C.S. Lewis, the great atheist agnostic who came to Christ and wrote Narnia and many other things, near Christianity, his perspective is so right on. He said, what people don't understand is hell, the lock is on the inside of the door. Everyone who is in hell wants to be there. God is just. Anyone who long seeks for wants to be with God. Oh, he's loving. He sent his son.

Opportunity. He's forgiven. Hell is for a place who say, I don't want you, God. And so God says, thy will be done. And to people who say, oh, God, help me.

Your will be done. I don't know if you've ever been around people who've been through, I mean, gnarly, nasty, ugly, violent divorce. But I mean, I mean, it's visceral. I mean, there's name calling and there's attorneys and I mean, it's I mean, they steal one another's kids.

I mean, it's ugly, ugly, ugly, ugly. That's the way it is between mankind and God. It's not like there's a group of people in hell going, oh, I want to be there.

I want to be there. They don't want anything to do with God or light or goodness. And God in his mercy and grace to you and your dignity of mind gives us the freedom to choose in love or to reject. Today, before we move forward, I think you and I need to have a very private and personal talk. But you need to have a very private and personal talk with the God who made all that there is, who sent his son specifically for you because he wants to be with you. And we talked about life being sort of an open book test and God wants you to pass.

And this isn't like some little test. This is about life and death. This is about time and eternity. And God would say to you at this moment, as you're listening to my voice, he has you listening right at this moment because he's God. And he knew where you would be and how you would get this message and what would be happening in your life. And here's what he wants to say to you. Would you let me forgive you?

Would you let me love you? Would you be willing to open your hands and your heart and say, I believe today, Lord Jesus, that you are the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords, that you're the Messiah and Savior who's coming into the world, that you died in my place to forgive my sin and that you offer me eternal life if I will believe. Today, I am mindful of that very simple but transformational truth that God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son that whoever would believe, would trust in him, wouldn't perish but have everlasting life. And in your heart of hearts and wherever you're at, whatever you need to do, if you need to pull the car over, if you need to stop the workout, if you need to just do whatever right now, you need to turn to God and say, Lord God Almighty, I ask you to forgive me based on Christ's work.

I believe he died and rose for me personally. Come into my life right now. Make me your son.

Make me your daughter. And then I pray for the power and the grace to follow you all the days of my life. The Bible is clear. Those who call upon the name of the Lord will be saved. Call upon him today. If you prayed with Chip, we'd love to put a resource in your hands.

It's called Starting Out Right and it's absolutely free. Now this resource will help you gain a clear biblical understanding of what it means to put your faith in Jesus. And that's our whole mission here at Living on the Edge, helping Christians really live like Christians. So let us help you get started in your faith journey. You can request this resource by calling us at 888-333-6003 or visiting livingontheedge.org, then clicking on the New Believers button.

That's livingontheedge.org or call 888-333-6003. Chip, we're just over halfway through our series on Heaven. And you know, we've all seen various depictions of what Heaven will be like from movies or pictures. But unfortunately, much of what we think we know isn't in the Bible at all. So why is it important that we understand what Heaven is really like? Well Dave, there is a lot of sort of bad information about Heaven, and there's not many sermons about Heaven. And the Bible says probably more about Heaven than most people really understand. But let me tell you, it's not one long church service. It's not, you know, someday we're going to sit on clouds with angels and play a lot of harps.

And it's not just sort of this ethereal concept. It's an actual physical place where Jesus is. You learn there's a new Heaven and there's a new Earth that's as real and as concrete as this Earth except God's original plan.

It's absolutely spectacular. And when people get a clear view of Heaven, Dave, there's hope. And if there's ever a time with losing of loved ones and all the chaos in the world that we need to really understand what Heaven is like, it's now. And so I wrote a book called The Real Heaven, and we later turned that into a small group that people can get on DVD or they can stream it. I've just seen God use this book and this content like few things we've ever produced. I just really encourage you to get it.

Thanks, Chip. Well, if you've been searching for some solid biblical answers about Heaven, let me encourage you to get plugged in with our resources for this series. Whether it's Chip's book, The Real Heaven, or the small group study, you're going to walk away with a more accurate and exciting view of the place God's preparing for us. For complete ordering details, go to livingontheedge.org, or call us at 888-333-6003. That's 888-333-6003, or visit livingontheedge.org.

App listeners, tap Special Offers. Just before we close, would you stop for a minute and pray for Living on the Edge? We've never seen a greater need for God's truth to go out than right now. And by God's grace, Living on the Edge has been able to provide encouragement, teaching, and personal discipleship resources to more people than ever before. So thank you to those who support us with your prayers. God is doing amazing things. Well, for all of us here, this is Dave Druey saying thanks for listening to this Edition of Living on the Edge.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-05-21 03:03:31 / 2023-05-21 03:11:30 / 8

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