What is Heaven?

Keep it Simple Series

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Heaven is a word we use often to mean different things. When we look up in the sky, we say we are ‘looking up to heaven’. When the rain falls, we say ‘the heavens have opened’. When we speak of God, we say ‘He lives in heaven’. And in all instances, we are correct.

When God created the heavens and the Earth at the dawn of our creation, the heavens created here was the atmosphere above us, the sky which houses the sun, moon, stars and all other celestial elements. But this is not to be confused with the kingdom of Heaven where God lives. The heavens which is part of our universe is a very physical place in our natural world. But Heaven where God lives is another place altogether!

Heaven is a spiritual kingdom; a very real place. But it does not exist in our physical world. God is a Spirit, so He lives in a spiritual world. Whilst we do not know where Heaven is we know the direction; and that is upwards beyond the sky.  In Genesis 11:1-7, humans decide to build a tower to reach heaven, “And the Lord came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of men built,” [Genesis 11:5]. And in verse 7, the Lord continues to speak to Jesus and the Holy Spirit, confirming that They will ‘go down’ to confuse their [humans] language and send them to different parts of the world. So we know that Heaven is above for God to come down.

Heaven is the home of Jehovah God and Jesus Christ. Whilst it is also the home of the Holy Spirit, He currently dwells with us in the earth. When we look up to the sky or the heavens, we are looking toward heaven, but we are not looking at the Kingdom of Heaven. Whilst the term heaven or ‘the heavens’ are all used interchangeably, it is the kingdom of Heaven that Jesus came to tell us about, and how to get there, which is through Him. Until then, no one knew there was a kingdom of Heaven waiting to embrace mankind, how to get to it, or that we should even be trying to get there. Jesus teaches us that He came from Heaven and after He rose from the dead, He went back to Heaven. He also teaches us that God His Father lives in Heaven and that the Holy Spirit would come down from Heaven to live with us in the Earth, which He has. The Gospels – Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, teaches us, all about the kingdom of Heaven.

There are many scriptures where God Himself speaks of Heaven; both the physical heavens that we see when we look up into the sky and the spiritual place where He lives.

In Genesis 15:5 God speaks to Abraham telling him that many nations will be birthed through him and tells Abraham to “Look now toward the heavens and count the stars—if you are able to count them,” referring to the physical heaven that Abraham could see. And in Isaiah 66:1-2 God speaks of His might, and declares that Heaven is His throne and Earth is His footstool, so He governs both heaven and the Earth and we know from these Biblical references that Heaven is above and the Earth is below.

The book of Revelation provides us with a beautiful insight into Heaven; past, present and future. And one day God’s kingdom of Heaven will be brought down to the Earth… it will literally be Heaven on Earth! [Revelation 21].

Heaven is our destination! First up there, then down here.

Scriptures

Genesis Chapter 1
The Gospels – Matthew, Mark, Luke and John
Revelation Chapter 21

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