a place called heaven
The entire Bible has been leading to what’s revealed here in the second to last chapter of Revelation. It’s here that God pulls back the curtain and gives us a preview of the coming redemption. The apocalypse is not just a time of judgement; the end times are also when God will right every wrong and fix all that’s broken. He’ll do so by ushering in the new Heaven, new Earth, and new Jerusalem. There is much we can learn and takeaway from Revelation 21 and 22 as we near the end of our study of the book of Revelation.
Heaven Will be a New Place
“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth passed away, and there is no longer any sea. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband.”
Such beauty and hope is contained in Revelation 21:1–2 and the image of the new Jerusalem being revealed like a bride on her wedding day. God will again use His power that He used to create everything at the beginning of time. This time, He’ll bring about a new creation. This world won’t continue on degrading forever. A new Earth, a new Heaven, and a new Jerusalem are coming.
Heaven Will be a Godly Place
What makes Heaven the place you should want to be is fairly simple: God will be there. There’s no greater reward than being in the presence of God, and in Heaven, He will dwell among us. We will know and experience God in a way we can’t even imagine right now!
Heaven Will be an Encouraging Place
“And He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away.”
It’s hard to picture existing in a place like the one described here in Revelation 21:4. No death. No mourning. No crying. No pain. What an encouraging place that will be.
Heaven Will be a Promised Place
Jesus told His disciples that He was going to prepare a place for them. This new creation is the fulfillment of that promise. God is always true to His word.
Heaven Will be a Satisfying Place
Life on Earth is filled with longing. We always want more. We lust after what we don’t have. But once we’re in Heaven, we will eternally drink the water of life. In Christ, we will be fully satisfied forevermore.
Heaven Will be an Intimate Place
In Heaven, God won’t keep us at a distance. He won’t welcome us in, then treat us as strangers. Instead, we will enter as children of the King. We’ll experience an unsurpassed intimacy with the Creator of the universe.
Heaven Will be a Holy Place
God is holy and cannot have unholiness in His presence. That is why only those who are cloaked in Christ’s righteousness will be able to enter in. All those who do not know Christ as their Savior will not be allowed in.
Heaven Will be a Glorious Place
The glory of God is one of the central themes and images throughout Scripture. So, it should come as no surprise that one of the primary aspects of Heaven is God’s glory. His glory will shine and be present in everything in this new Heaven.
Heaven Will be a Protected Place
Like the original city of Jerusalem, the new Jerusalem will have wall and gates. Written on those walls and gates are the names of 12 tribes of Israel and the 12 apostles of the Lamb. This represents the unity that will be present in this new creation.
Heaven Will be an Immense Place
The new Jerusalem is also described in this passage as an incredibly large cubic city, with a width, length, and height of 1,500 miles each. It will be an immense place with room for all of the redeemed from throughout the ages.
Heaven Will be a Beautiful Place
Language can’t describe the splendor of Heaven. John does his best, but even in using gold, pearls, and every precious stone, he can’t fully describe Heaven’s beauty.
Heaven Will be an Illumined Place
In Heaven, there will never be any darkness. Why? Because the glory of God will illumine everything, and the nations will walk by that light. There will be no more darkness—only the light of the Lamb.
Heaven Will be a Bountiful Place
Calling back to the Garden of Eden, there will be a Tree of Life in Heaven. It will produce 12 kinds fruit. God will bring forth an abundance of food and drink for us to enjoy in Heaven.
Heaven Will be a Healing Place
Looking around, it’s clear that healing is needed all around us, and while God brings contained moments of healing in this world, total healing won’t take place until this arrival of the new Heaven and new Earth. Only then will the leaves of the Tree of Life bring healing for the nations.
Heaven Will be a Blessed Place
“His bond-servants will serve Him; they will see His face, and His name will be on their foreheads.”
There is no greater blessing and no greater honor than to see God and belong to Him. That’s why when Heaven is described as a place where we will see His face and His name will be on our foreheads (demonstrating that we belong to Him), we know Heaven is a truly blessed place.
All of this is only the faintest, smallest, most miniscule glimpse into how magnificent and wonderful the new Heaven and new Earth will be. Entire sermon series, books, and academic careers could be focused on the richness of these verses alone. But in the midst of the mystery and grandeur of Heaven that will forever evade us in this life, there is one thing we know for sure: a better day is coming and that better day will arrive in the second coming of Christ and His new creation.