As Christians, we all like to think about heaven. Hopefully, we live our lives like we are on our way there! Many, when thinking about heaven, picture the scene from Revelation 21, a pearly gate and a street of gold. But is that a description of the place where Christians will spend eternity? Will there literally be a gate made of a pearl and a street made of gold?
What does Heaven look like?
1) Does Revelation 21 Describe Heaven?
Let’s look at just a couple of points, as it concerns what heaven looks like:
In this highly figurative book, John describes a city. There are several points of his description of which I think we must take special note.
- The city comes down “out of heaven” (vs. 2). I find it interesting, if John is describing heaven, that it would come down “out of heaven.”
- The city is “prepared as a bride adorned for her husband” (vs. 2) and is described as “the Bride, the wife of the Lamb” (vs. 9). I find it very difficult to believe that Jesus, the Lamb, is now or will ever be married to heaven.
- It is said of the city, “By its light will the nations walk, and the kings of the earth will bring their glory into it” (vs. 24). When “We all get to heaven” there will be no more life on this earth. There will be no nations nor kings.
I would encourage you to study this further, but I truly believe that the description of the city in Revelation 21 describes the Lord’s church, the wife of the Lamb (2 Corinthians 11:2).
2) What description of Heaven is possible?
I believe one of the most valuable passages of Scripture, as it pertains to this question, is 2 Corinthians 4:18, “…the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.” In other words, everything physical is temporary. That means that nothing you have ever seen with your eyes, touched with your hands, smelled with your nose, heard with your ears, or tasted with your mouth will be in heaven!
Since we know that to be true, how could heaven possibly be described in terms we could comprehend? It is an environment like nothing you have ever experienced. There is nothing with which it can be compared. It is not, “The big basketball court in the sky.” Nor is it, “The big fishing hole in the sky.”
Paul put it this way, when describing the spiritual bodies we will have there, “But someone will ask, ‘How are the dead raised? With what kind of body do they come?’ You foolish person! What you sow does not come to life unless it dies. And what you sow is not the body that is to be, but a bare kernel, perhaps of wheat or of some other grain. But God gives it a body as he has chosen, and to each kind of seed its own body” (1 Corinthians 15:35-38).
In other words, you and everything around you will be more different and more wonderful than you can possibly comprehend.
3) The important thing is not how it will look, but who will be there.
I am not very concerned with how heaven will look. I do not care about a street of gold or a gate made of a single pearl! All I care about is spending eternity with my God and my Savior, Jesus Christ! I feel like Paul felt, “My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better” (Philippians 1:23).
That is why I press on! That is why I continue walking in the light, so that His blood continues to wash me clean (1 John 1:7). I want to be ready when He comes to take me home!
Are you ready? Are you washed in His blood? Are you confident that you will spend eternity in Heaven?
I love you and the God in Heaven loves you,