THE BROTHER ASKS, “IS HEAVEN OUR FINAL DESTINATION.”
First, most Christians, when discussing future events, limit themselves to contentons about sequence and chronology. That is, they argue the order and timing of a Rapture, an Antichrist, a Great Tribulation, the Lord’s Return and a Millennial Reign. Yet they are seemingly unable to consider the nature or state of being when completely hid in Christ and Christ is hid in them.
Second, there is a great deal of confusion when discussing the Kingdom of Heaven vs the Kingdom of God. Without being too tangential allow me some liberty. The Kingdom of God is here and now on planet earth. That is, we are informed that the Kingdom of God is not meat or drink, but righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Ghost. It is a state of being while still confined to mortality. But we also understand that Heaven is not earth bound. For example, Jesus ascended into Heaven following His resurrection, and He now sits at the right hand of God as our Advocate and Great High Priest making intercession for us (Heb.4:14-16). So Heaven referes to a state of immortality.
But let us move on to the point and answer the brother’s question. What exactly is our inheritance besides the ubiquitous ruling, reigning and eternal life? Answer: Jesus prayed, “That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me (Jn.17:21).” Hence a distinct type of unity awaits us. A unity exactly like the unity Jesus demonstrated with the Father while on earth. In this state we know the will of God and we do it.
Ok. Then what? Answer: “That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him” (Eph.1:10). So here we come to understand that the Kingdom of God and the Kingdom of Heaven will be unified. Here a sort of horizontal unity is promised or unity with each other. Not only is our inheritance a Oneness with God, but we are also promised an almost incomprehensible Fellowship, the likes of which no family or earthly church could compare.
And finally we read of an ultimate type of unity that seems to supersede the other two types of unity just described. “And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all” (1Cor.15:28). Here we consider a unity in God that not only demystifies trinititarianism, but at the same time allows us conjoint omniscience, omnipresence and omnipotence without the slightest hint or specter of soul annihilation.
These levels of unity or Heaven make me think of Paul’s remarks when he said he knew a man that was taken up to the third heaven (2Cor.12:2). So, apparently it us true, “Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him” (1Cor.2:9).
When I was 18 my future wife and I used to visit Dolly, a 90 year old dear friend and precious saint. When we talked about Heaven and Jesus I remember her clapping her hands and with an enormous smile blurting out like a little school girl, “Won’t it be grande?” Yes Dolly, I’m sure you are now well aware that it is grande. Friends, be blessed in Jesus name.