Have you ever thought about heaven? If you’re like most people, you probably have. Here are a few different views on heaven:
Marxism: Heaven is a carrot used by the wealthy to make people keep working for minimum wage (Moral of the story? You’re vegetarian in heaven! :-p).
Buddhism: Your body ceases to exist and you go to Nirvana, which is like eternal meditation.
Islam: The men: go to heaven where they drink wine as good as their deeds and are waited on by numerous virgins. As for the women? They get somewhat the same thing.
And Christianity? Well, talk about complicated!
So, the main thing you need to know about Revelation is this: Symbolism! Even though Revelation is all symbolism, we can still decipher the symbols to get a close enough picture of heaven.
Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb down the middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him. They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign for ever and ever. (Revelation 22:1-5 NIV84)
First, let’s discuss the river. Biblically, while stagnant water represents death, the river of life is clear and gently flowing. As clean, moving water, it represents righteousness. The tree symbolizes God’s people. In Isaiah:
This is what the Lord says—
he who made you, who formed you in the womb,
and who will help you:
Do not be afraid, O Jacob, my servant,
Jeshurun, whom I have chosen.
For I will pour water on the thirsty land,
and streams on the dry ground;
I will pour out my Spirit on your offspring,
and my blessing on your descendants.
They will spring up like grass in a meadow,
like poplar trees by flowing streams. (Isaiah 44:2-4 NIV84)
So, in heaven, we will be with God, and God’s people will be righteous. The trees with the fruit on them represent good. The fact that there are twelve fruits reinforces the symbol of God’s people sanctified in heaven (the twelve tribes of Israel were God’s chosen).
John wrote down that we would not need light, and there would be no night. Night is a symbol of evil, and light represents good. We won’t need the sun in heaven, because we have the Son in heaven, the One who enables us to see good!
And imagine being in heaven forever. With God, forever. Forever is a long time. It’s not fathomable by the human mind. We’re only able to think in terms of beginning and end. Who would just randomly come up with this idea? Who would create a realm so indescribable with an equally mystifying maker? The answer: no one. This is the truth. God always was, is, and always will be. He’s constant. Your mind is probably in a very confused state now, so let’s stop here for today.
People wonder, how do you get to heaven? Tune in tomorrow, where we’ll discuss the road to heaven a bit.
Peace be with you all.
In His Love,
The Jesus Freak Girl
20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. (Ephesians 3:20-21, NIV184).