The words of the young woman in confirmation class kind of hit me by surprise: “Heaven just seems like it is going to be so boring!”
I have to admit: I didn’t know how to respond. I had recently visited several Christians who were near death, and I could see the excitement and joy of heaven in their eyes. How could she say this? Then I remembered my own childhood imaginations—admittedly influenced more by Saturday morning cartoons than Holy Scripture. I recalled floating around on clouds and singing really long hymns all day!
Even as adults our visions of heaven are not much better. In fact, sometimes heaven is simply pictured as getting whatever we desire. The football fan gets to spend eternity attending the most exciting games ever played. The chocolate lover gets to taste every variety of cocoa blended into the perfect ratio of bitter and sweet without ever gaining weight. The outdoorsman gets to spend his time hiking in the mountains and exploring their glacier-tinted lakes and waterfalls. The golfer gets to play the most perfectly manicured courses imaginable and every shot is a hole in one. While these pictures may help us grasp the joys of heaven, they are not a complete picture of what God has waiting for his people.
Scripture refers to heaven in many ways. It is described as a wedding banquet (Matthew 22:1-14), a house with many rooms (John 14:2,3), a better country (Hebrews 11:16), the new Jerusalem (Revelation 21:2), and paradise (Luke 23:43), just to name a few. It is a place of life filled with joy, peace, and rest. Central to this life is experiencing perfect union with God and the enjoyment of his presence.
The problem with these pictures of heaven is that they depict primarily a fulfillment of our earthly desires. But in heaven our desires will be so in line with God’s desires that the two will become one. We will want what God wants and find joy in his glory. This is why praising God in heaven will not in any way be “boring.”
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Author: Justin Cloute
Volume 107, Number 12
Issue: December 2020