March 12 I Sunday
“Therefore, ‘they are before the throne of God and serve Him day and night in His temple; and He who sits on the throne will shelter them with His presence.’” —Revelation 7:15
John records the opening verse of this devotion as he describes what he sees in heaven. He adds, “Never again will they hunger; never again will they thirst. The sun will not beat down on them, nor any scorching heat. For the Lamb at the centre of the throne will be their shepherd; He will lead them to springs of living water. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes” (Revelation 7:16-17). What a beautiful picture of heaven! There will be no hunger, no thirst, no fear and no tears in heaven. C. S. Lewis once said, “Joy is the serious business of heaven.” Heaven is a place and time of joy and excitement.
Although the Bible speaks of heaven as a place where God is, the gospel is not about a place, but a person. At the core, the gospel is about fallen humans being reconciled to God through Christ and entering into an active, living relationship with God that permeates both time and then eternity. 1 Thessalonians 5:10 tells us, “He died for us so that, whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with Him.” The end goal, therefore, is not to arrive in heaven, but to be with Him.
Heaven is not dangled as a bribe to get people to trust Christ. If it is, we will be more interested in heaven than we are in Christ, like getting married and being more interested in the new house than our spouse. In fact, the gospel is not primarily about getting people out of hell and into heaven; rather, it is an announcement that God had left heaven to save people from hell so they can be with Him forever in heaven.
We can go to heaven, because His indwelling Spirit restores to us what was lost when the first human beings sinned causing all of humanity to be spiritually dead. By placing faith in the finished work of Jesus, we are restored to a living spiritual life, where His presence in us gives us hope, life and power. This is why Paul writes, “I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which He has called you, the riches of His glorious inheritance in His holy people, and His incomparably great power for us who believe” (Ephesians 1:18-19). When we believe in Christ, we experience the fullness of Christ in His love and power.
May we embrace the gospel, knowing that it is not about a residential place but a relationship with a real person we will spend eternity with.
Prayer: Lord Jesus Christ, thank You for Your love towards me. You are my greatest treasure. As much as I look forward to the joys of heaven, spending eternity with You outweighs it all. Praise You!
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