Heaven: the BIG Questions !!

When anyone begins to think about Heaven there is
one question that looms large above all others.
Is there really a Heaven?

This question overarches all others. And!! If anyone even begins to think that
maybe there is such a place … the number of questions that emerge is without
number.

In this article we will examine just few of these always asked questions such as:

What happens to us when we die?
Is there literally a Heaven?
Where is Heaven?
How do you get there?
Is Heaven a truly glorious Place?
Will we know each other in Heaven?
Will there be animals in Heaven?

Now! Given this set of questions where do we go to get any answers;
especially answers that can be credibly considered. This is another
transcendent question that is basic to any serious study. In these web
site articles we will address this question at the very onset of out study.

After many weeks of pondering the resources available on Heaven I have
concluded the following:

Two major underlying points:

1.) There is no documented resource available today that even
begins match the volume of information on Heaven that the bible
reveals.
2.) There is no documented individual who has spoken about, and
taught about Heaven as much as Jesus Christ has.

Study #1- Luke 23:39-43 What happens to us when we die?

A wonderful place to open our study is found In Lukes gospel 23:39-43. We will approach this passage asking our first question.

These 5 verses are packed with helpful information. Although it does give us an answer to our question, it also gives rise to several new questions.

The setting for this scene is the crucifixion. Jesus and two hard criminals are hanging on separate crosses: one on his left and one on his right.

First a look at the passage:

Luke 23:39-43
39 One of the criminals who were hanged railed at him, saying, “Are you not the Christ? Save yourself and us!”
40 But the other rebuked him, saying, “Do you not fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation?
41 And we indeed justly, for we are receiving the due reward of our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong.”
42 And he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”
43 And he said to him, “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.”
Second: Unpacking these 5 verses:

1. The setting is most significant;
It is the crufixion and Jesus and two harden crimals are hanging on separate crosses. And!

2. It is the 3-person dialogue that ensues that is our focus.
Each of the criminals speak and then Jesus specks.
The first makes a mockery of Jesus.
The second then severely rebukes the 1st
The 1st criminal railed on Jesus and was severe in his comments.
The 2nd criminal believed that Jesus was coming to build a kingdom.

3. But! It is Jesus brief but powerful words that burst open the
helpful Truths that undergirds all that Jesus said. Read verse
Luke 23:43 again !!
Luke 23:43 And he said to him, “Truly, I say
to you, Today you will be with
me in paradise.

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Third: 4 Eternal Truths in this passage.

1. Clearly Jesus responds to the kind criminal in words that affect the mans Eternal Destiny:ie at his point of death. He says TODAY you will be with me in paradise. (The word paradise is used only 3 times in the N.T. , and without exception it simply means Jesus literal Presence.)
2. Hence, the Jesus words makes it clear: this criminal will be with Jesus
following his death.
3. The next obvious implied truth here is that it is not this criminals good life that
makes him ready for paradise.
4. Further study of the word PARADISE reveals that this special word is always used to also mean HEAVEN.

Fourth: My concluding comments:

HEAVEN is a literal place where every
true believe goes immediately after death here on earth.

PREPARATION FOR HEAVEN: a true
believe in the fact that Jesus is the
King of kings and the Lord of Glory.

As we continue our study we will discover that the scriptures clearly depict two different heavens. The Heaven we go to at death is referred to as the immediate Heaven by scholars and the final Heaven is the New Heaven and the New Earth.

This subject is compelling to the extent that others have told me that it generates a growing excitement that motivates then very significantly.

See STUDY #2 The Immediate Heaven as a place.