Heaven is a CITY

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					                                                                                homes, no paramedics, no CPR. Doctors aren't needed anymore. No need
     HEAVEN ON EARTH? CC 25/7/99                                                for aspirin, no accidents, no cancer, no heart attacks. In heaven no one
                                                                                grows old and weak. There are no cemeteries, no funerals… for in that
We all want to know about heaven. Everyone wants to go there. Most              wonderful city no one ever dies. If you make it to that city, you live
people believe there’s a place called heaven. Most people think: “There's       forever, never to die again.
got to be something more. Something more than the pain and suffering of
this life. Something more than 70 or 80 years on planet earth. Something        Heaven is a real place filled with real people. The Bible compares heaven
more than being born, living, dying, and then being buried in the ground.”      to a mansion with many rooms (John 14:1-3) and describes it as an
Something beyond this life and this world. Some sense of eternity.              enormous city teeming with people (Revelation 21-22).

The Bible shows us that we were made to live forever.                           The Bible talks of Heavenly CITIZENSHIP – Heavenly CONDUCT
Heaven is God's prepared place for prepared people.                             Phil 3:20 For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for
                                                                                the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:

Heaven speaks to us of a RULER, a RELATIONSHIP and a REWARD.                    Col. 3:1 If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above
                                                                                (born again), where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. 2 Set your
1.       A RULER                                                                affection on things above, not on things on the earth. 3 For ye are dead,
                                                                                and your life is hid with Christ in God.
Mt. 18:3 And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and
become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.       Our citizenship, our home, is not here on earth, but in heaven. We are in
                                                                                training. We will play a part in ruling the universe. We will rule over
Heaven is a Place – a KINGDOM. There is a Throne and a King there.              cities. (Luke 19:11-27). In Heaven it says, “His servants will serve Him,
                                                                                and they shall see His face”. ” (Rev. 22:3).
Heaven is a COUNTRY.
Heb. 11:16 But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly:          Is our mind on this world, or do we think about eternity? Is eternity on our
wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared       minds? Is eternity in our hearts? Do we care about the things of time – or
for them a city.                                                                of eternity? Is our priority related to the world or directed by heaven? Do
                                                                                we take eternity seriously?
Heaven is a CITY. A city designed and built by God (Hebrews 11:10).
A city with no pollution. No crime or violence. No greedy politicians, no       God wants us to live a life of satisfaction, and usefulness.
drug pushers, no child molesters.
                                                                                “My interest is in Heaven because I am going to spend the rest of my life
It’s a city... A city we might picture as filled with abundant parks, rivers,   there” (Moody).
rolling meadows, and flowing streams. Flowers in constant bloom line the
streets, fruit trees of every kind, every species of plant life growing free
from pestilence and disease. The gates are made of pearl, the walls of
jasper, the streets of gold. Precious stones lie on the ground as playthings;
emeralds, rubies, and diamonds galore.

In the city that God builds, there are no tears, no sorrow … no regret … no
remorse. There are no wheelchairs, no false teeth, no bald heads, no
hearing aids, and no crutches. There are no more hospitals, no more nursing
         2.       RELATIONSHIP                                                HIS PRESENCE – WITH HIM
                                                                              Eph 2:6 And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together (in
Did you know – that there’s people here today who are RELATED TO              company with) in heavenly places in Christ Jesus.
                                                                              Heaven is a place of perfect love. We shall look on His face. As a hymn-
Not only does HEAVENLY LIVING mean having a RULER, Heavenly                   writer put it, “Where Jesus it, ‘tis Heaven there”. The royal presence of the
Living means having a Personal RELATIONSHIP – as an adopted son or            King of Kings, the Prince of Peace.
daughter – of the KING. We become Members of THE ROYAL FAMILY.
                                                                              HIS COMFORT
                                                                              Rev. 21:4 And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there
                                                                              shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be
HEAVENLY BIRTH                                                                any more pain: for the former things are passed away.
Jn. 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee,
Except a man be born again (born from above), he cannot see the kingdom       No death, pain, tears. Heaven will be a place of perfect happiness and joy.
of God.                                                                       Faithful servants will enter into the Joy of the Lord” (Mt. 25:21).

What a privilege – that we can join the Family of God!                        The Bible teaches that the moment we die we go directly into the presence
                                                                              of the Lord Jesus Christ. Paul spoke of this in 2 Corinthians 5:7-8 and
HEAVENLY FATHER                                                               Philippians 1:21-23. What wonderful fellowship we will have with Him.
Mt 5:16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good
works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.                            As J.N. Darby was dying, a friend asked him what his feelings were about
                                                                              leaving this world. He said, “Oh it makes little difference. Here, Christ is
HEAVENLY HOME                                                                 with me; and there I shall be with Him.”
The Father's house (John 14:2). The dwelling place of God (Psalm 33:13).
No more parting. No more the suffering of pain as the coffin lid is shut on
the face of a loved one.

We will be home. In the eternal home of those who trust Jesus Christ as
Saviour. When we get there maybe we will hear Him say, “Welcome
home!” Our beloved Lord will welcome us there, to be with Him forever.
         3.       REWARD                                                        great Savior looked over his records and told us it was money you gave
                                                                                that sent the messengers out." Then together all praised the Lord Jesus
HEAVENLY LIVING means storing up…                                               Christ.
 wonderful Heavenly RICHES and TREASURES.                                       The only thing on earth a man can absolutely gain is heaven.
Mt. 6:20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth
nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal.        The greatest business in life is to prepare for the next life.

Is our heart in heaven? (v. 21) For where your treasure is, there will your     INHERITANCE
heart be also.                                                                  1 Pet 1:4 To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth
                                                                                not away, reserved in heaven for you.
I would not give one moment of heaven for all the joys and riches of the
world, even if it lasted for thousands and thousands of years (Martin           “A sunset is heaven's gate ajar.” Heaven is a place of incomparable beauty.
Luther, 1483-1546).                                                             “Of pure gold, as clear as glass.” Perfect in colour, sights, and sounds. A
                                                                                place of joy, glory, glad reunions, wonderful companionships. Perfect
A rich man showed a preacher around his estate. Pointing to the north, the      government. No more defilement, pollution, poverty. No danger, no
man said, "As far as you can see, I own." Then pointing to the east, then       dentist-chairs, no tragedies. No careworn faces. No more crime. No more
the south, then the west, he repeated, "As far as you can see, I own." It was   old age. No slums. No more darkness, no decay. No more disappointments.
the preacher's turn. Pointing skyward, he asked "How much do you own up         No sin, no graveyards, no funeral directors, no death, no doctors, no
there?"                                                                         sickness, no disabilities, no devil. We will have immortal, glorified bodies.
                                                                                No more broken hearts, bitter memories, no more sickness, suffering, grief.
Heb 10:34 …Knowing in yourselves that ye have in heaven a better and an         No more shadows, no fear, no night.
enduring substance (property, wealth, possessions).
                                                                                In the Heavenly city will be magnificent jewels, clear as crystal, lovely
What we have in this world we didn’t bring with us. We can’t take it out        pearls, a street of transparent gold, amazing trees growing beside a
with us. In the here and now we can invest in souls, in Bibles, in              sparkling river of life. Peace and purity. The awesome throne of God. Most
missionaries, in spreading the gospel around the world.                         wonderful of all, the Fairest of ten thousand will be there. The best part of
                                                                                heaven will be seeing Jesus himself face to face. We will praise Him
In a vision a couple were seen nearing the end of life's journey. They were     around the throne of God.
lugging a lot of baggage, money, stocks, bonds, finery, jewels, and furs.
Just outside the gate of the New Jerusalem was a junk pile. "Throw all your     Heaven won't be boring. It will be more fun, more wonderful than we
things in that heap," the angel ordered. Slowly, most reluctantly, the man      could imagine. It will be a place where the streets are paved with gold, the
and woman parted with their earthly treasures, which they held so dear, but     gates are made of pearl, and the walls made of precious jewels.
which were worthless up above.
                                                                                A rich man on his death bed, negotiated with God to allow him to bring his
Another couple approached. Carrying very little baggage, they looked            earthly treasures with him when he came to heaven. God's reaction was
expectantly toward the gate, which swung outward as songs of praises rang       that this was a most unusual request, but since this man had been
within. A group of people were awaiting them whom they had never met.           exceptionally faithful, permission was granted to bring along just one
The angel explained, "These are they who have been won to Christ in             suitcase. The time arrived, the man presented himself at the pearly gates,
distant lands through the money you gave to missions." Then the converted       suitcase in hand-- BOTH hands, actually, since he had stuffed it with as
heathens thanked the newcomers, saying, "We were in darkness. One day           many bars of gold bullion as would fit. St. Peter said, "Sorry, you know the
missionaries came and told us of the Lord . That's why we're here. The          rules--you can't take it with you." But the man protested, "God said I could
                                                                                … one suitcase." St. Peter checked, found out that this one would be an
exception, prepared to let the man enter, then said, "OK, but I will have to   (APPLICATION: )
examine the contents before you pass." He took the suitcase, opened it, saw
the gold bars and asked quizzically, "You brought PAVEMENT?"                   SO WHAT ARE WE DOING ABOUT HEAVEN HERE & NOW?
["Heaven" by Dr. David Leininger, March 30, 1997]
                                                                               What on earth are we doing about eternity??

                                                                               The reality of heaven should prompt us to holy living.

                                                                               We can have Heaven on Earth today. We can live under His RULERSHIP,
                                                                               grow in our RELATIONSHIP with Him, and find our REWARD in
                                                                               pleasing Him in the here and now, as well as in eternity.

                                                                               ARE YOU READY FOR HEAVEN? ARE YOU PREPARED?
                                                                               No one will go to heaven except by the grace of God and because of the
                                                                               blood of Jesus Christ. If a man says "No" to Jesus, he has no hope of
                                                                               heaven. If you're wrong about heaven, you're going to be wrong for a long,
                                                                               long time. You will either spend eternity in heaven or eternity in hell.

                                                                               "When I get to heaven, I shall see three wonders there: The first wonder
                                                                               will be to see many there whom I did not expect to see; the second wonder
                                                                               will be to miss many people whom I did expect to see; the third and
                                                                               greatest wonder of all will be to find myself there." (John Newton)

                                                                               An old tombstone bears the following epitaph:
                                                                               Pause Stranger, when you pass me by,
                                                                               As you are now, so once was I
                                                                               As I am now, so you will be,
                                                                               So prepare for death and follow me.

                                                                               An unknown passerby read those words and underneath scratched this
                                                                               To follow you I'm not content,
                                                                               Until I know which way you went.

                                                                               Which way are you going?
God has made it easy for you to go to heaven. Our entire hope of heaven is
wrapped up in what Jesus did when he died on the cross for the sins of the
world and rose from the dead.

Are you ready for the world to come? Have you made a reservation?
Heaven is a reality.

“The greatest truth that ever crossed my mind is the fact that I must live
somewhere forever.” (Dr Bob Jones Sr)

What a tragedy if you were to miss Heaven!

A Christian lay dying, surrounded by his family. As he felt life slipping
away from him, he called his children one by one and drew them down
beside him. To each he whispered, “Good night. I’ll see you in the
morning.” His “Good Night” was a farewell of faith. But when he beckoned
the “black sheep” of the family to his side, the old saint tearfully said,
“Good bye”.
The boy drew back and cried, “Oh Dad, why did you say ‘Good night’ to
the others, but ‘Good bye’ to me?”
The old man breathed slowly, “Son, I said ‘Good bye’ to you because you
don’t seem to be making any plans to meet me in eternity."
The boy threw himself into his father’s arms, sobbing, “Dad, don’t say
‘Good bye’ to me; say ‘Good night’!”

Will you be there? What is the alternative?

Christians never meet for the last time.

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