WHEN WE ALL GET TO HEAVEN
I recently listened to an old church hymn being played on the radio that I had not heard for many years. All throughout the day I found myself unconsciously humming one particular phrase of the song’s lyrics, that seemed to have become ingrained in my mind. I kept hearing the words, “When we all get to heaven, what a day of rejoicing it will be, When we all see Jesus, We will sing and shout the victory." I began to think about the innumerable sermons, that God’s inspired evangelists, ministers, pastors and teachers have ministered over the years, preaching the message of salvation with its promise of eternal life in heaven. Many who have been blessed to hear those sermons, have had their hearts so deeply pricked by the powerful, uncompromising Word of God, that they were convicted to confess Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior to receive God’s precious gift of salvation. Many, after receiving that precious gift have never given second thought to the possibility that there exists other hidden benefits available to all who have been "born again", who are willing to allow themselves the liberty of being set free, from the restricting grip of closed mindedness, that cause most to focus exclusively on the heavenly aspect of the multifaceted promise.
All throughout the Books of the Gospels, Jesus repeatedly made statements that the publishers of the Bible acknowledged to be of such paramount importance, that it warranted their decision to red letter each of those statements to further emphasize their great significance. They recognized the absolute need for Bible readers to give more serious consideration to every word spoken by Jesus Christ, who was GOD himself incarnated in the flesh. One of the statements that Jesus reiterated often with great passion was “He who has ears to hear, Let him hear." He yearned to convey to His listeners, the absolute, unparalleled need for them to be able to hear not only with their natural ear, but also with the ear of their spirit. The phenomenal insight attained by those who are saved today, who have been innately blessed with the anointing, or have developed the aptitude to hear with their spiritual ear, becomes very evident to all who are blessed to hear through them, the profound, unveiled revelation knowledge that was once hidden in the pages of scripture. It often transforms the whole spiritual perspective of those who are wise enough to open themselves to hearing, how they can more properly develop and mature in their relationship with God through His son Jesus Christ. He is the one and only Savior of the world, whose name Almighty GOD has exalted above every name that is in heaven, on earth and below the earth.
In the Book of Luke 13:22-30, Jesus taught, as He often did, by way of a parable. In it was hidden a veiled warning, that was meant for those who were saved then, as well as now. We know that many failed or ignored to acknowledge that warning then, just as others have done today, as evidenced by the manifestation of recurrent historical periods and events that have been characterized with much pain, loss and tribulations even until today. The scripture said, And He went through the cities and villages, teaching, and journeying toward Jerusalem.Then one said to Him, "Lord, are there few who are saved?" Jesus said to them, "Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you, will seek to enter and will not be able. When once the Master of the house has risen up and shut the door, and you begin to stand outside and knock at the door, saying, Lord, Lord, open for us, and He will answer and say to you, I do not know you, where you are from, then you will begin to say, We ate and drank in Your presence, and You taught in our streets. But He will say, I tell you I do not know you, where you are from. Depart from Me, all you workers of iniquity. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when you see Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God, and yourselves thrust out. They will come from the east and the west, from the north and the south, and sit down in the kingdom of God. And indeed there are last who will be first, and there are first who will be last."
Most who read the spoken word of Jesus Christ, forget that Jesus purposely spoke in parables. When Holy Spirit led me to this passage of scriptures, He exposed me to the revelation that the statements made by Jesus in these parables, were actually a foreshadow of what is to come after Jesus Christ returns for "The Church." In His first statement. Jesus said “Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you, will seek to enter and will not be able." It reveals the surprising reality that many of God’s redeemed sons and daughters today, are sadly very unaware of. They know that by the very Grace of God, that they are saved and guaranteed the promise of eternal life when they confess Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. They know that Jesus will rule as eternal King forever, and will then relinquish the kingdom to His Father Almighty GOD, who will then become All in All. But most know little or nothing about there being a “narrow gate” that they have to strive to enter through. The majority when made aware of this revelation looked totally dazed, or begin to ask several obvious questions like:
1. Why would anyone who is saved and guaranteed the promise of eternal life in heaven, have to strive
to enter through the narrow gate?
2. What would be the cause of anyone who is saved, not being able to enter through this narrow gate?
3. Why did Jesus refer to the those who were saved, as "workers of iniquity", who would be weeping
and gnashing their teeth?
We know that according to the words of Jesus, that the individuals attempting to enter the gate are saved and have died based on His mentioning that they actually saw Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the Kingdom of God, and are left outside, sorrowfully, pleading, begging and experiencing unparalleled emotional pain of such proportion, that they literally grind their teeth against one another. We know that according to scripture, God has always been, and continues to be faithful and true to His everlasting word; He cannot lie. By His grace these individuals were saved from "eternal damnation", when they acknowledged Jesus Christ as the Son of God who died for their sins, and was raised from the dead.They accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, and received the promised gift of Salvation with eternal life in heaven as the reward. We also know that God is Holy and that no form of sin or unrighteousness can enter into the presence of His glory. Scripture clearly tells us in 2 Corinthians 5:8 that to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord (if you are saved). The majority of those who are saved today, do not understand the significance of knowing that their existence in this physical realm, is that of a tripartite being consisting of a body, a soul and a spirit. Bible scripture says that when an individual is saved /born again, they become a new creation. The reality of that newness takes place only in the re-birthed or regenerated spirit of the individual, that has been justified and made the righteousness of GOD through His son Jesus Christ. So when anyone receives salvation, only the spirit part of their tripartite being is actually saved immediately; Holy Spirit enters into their spirit, and seals it until the day of redemption. When Christ returns, he will redeem the body part of their tripartite being, that was purchased through the shedding of His precious blood. It will then conform to the image of Christ's resurrected body. The last third of the individuals’ tripartite being, the soul is another whole matter, because it does not change one iota at this point.
The soul is the command center of the body and is comprised of the conscious and unconscious minds. Here you find the personality, thoughts, feelings, desires, emotions and will of an individual, that determines how they act and behave publicly and privately. It actually controls the body the same way that the brain manages the systems of the physical body. The soul is extremely vulnerable to the sinful influences of the world system that are under the authority of Satan. Newly saved Christians, and even more so those who are more seasoned, find themselves to be under the constant attack or influence of sinful worldly thoughts, feelings, desires and temptations that if submitted to, result in their conforming to Satan’s kingdom (the world) , instead of God’s.
Romans 12:2 clearly expresses the absolute necessity for all who are saved, to not conform to the world, but to be transformed by the renewing of their minds. This requires the constant reading of God’s word daily. This is the only way that they will be strengthened to the point of maturity in their spiritual development and relationship with GOD, allowing them to consciously suppress the desires to conform to the world . The sincere desire and actual act of daily opening their Bibles, diligently seeking to develop an insatiable appetite for GOD’s word, to incorporate it into their daily living, that God may be glorified through His redeemed sons and daughters, results in a gradual daily "sanctification of the soul." Jesus clearly expressed throughout the scriptures His concern for the future development of man's soul. In Mark 8:35 (Amplified Version of the Bible), Jesus said, "For whoever wants to save his [higher, spiritual,eternal] life, will lose it [the lower, natural, temporal life which is lived only on earth]; and whoever gives up his life [which is lived only on earth] for My sake and the Gospel's will save it [his higher, spiritual life in the eternal kingdom of God]. In Luke 21:9 Jesus speaks again and says, “By your patience, possess your souls.” In Matthew 16:26, Jesus again spoke saying “For what profit is it to a man if he gains the world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?” After reading this, you realize that because Jesus has spoken so much about the soul, that it is a lot more important in the whole scheme of things than initially realized by most who are saved/born again.
Why would Jesus Christ ask the question, “What will a man give in exchange for his soul? I repeated that question to myself, over and over again until Holy Spirit called back to my remembrance 2 Corinthians 5:10 which says, “For we all must appear before the judgement seat of Christ, that each may receive the things done in the body according to what he has done, whether good or bad." I read that scripture over and over until Holy Spirit again sent me to several more scriptures in Luke 13:22-30. As I read, my understanding of the scriptures was opened. I realized with a great amount of concern, that these verses of scriptures were definitive warnings to those who are saved.
Entering into eternity (obtaining eternal life in heaven ) at the very end of the current "Age of Grace" is entirely different, and set apart from entering the “Kingdom of Heaven” that will be established on earth by Jesus Christ during His Millennial Reign. Most ministries speak a lot about going to heaven, but very few seldom mention that heaven is a long ways down the road. There exist a one thousand year period that we all must deal with before we ever get to heaven.
In Matthew 7:21, Jesus said, “Not everyone who says to me Lord, Lord shall enter the Kingdom of Heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.” Entering heaven at the end is done by faith in the finished works of Jesus Christ when He died on the Cross of Calvary and rose from the dead, but entering the Kingdom of Heaven is determined by the ”regenerated life” that those who are saved, daily live on this earth after they receive the gift of Salvation in preparation for Christ’s return for the Millennial Reign.
Our Sovereign, Almighty, Powerful, Everlasting GOD provided His ultimate sacrifice, Jesus Christ, the Son of His Love, to die on the cross for the sins of every human being in the entire world, as well as the rest of His creation. Jesus Christ, in obedience to the will of His Father, allowed Himself to be cursed at, spit on and beat, marred and disfigured to the point that He no longer looked human. Then He allowed Himself to be subjected to the cruelest, most inhumane and humiliating form of death, crucifixion (hanging totally naked), on a cross to save all of mankind from sin. Now GOD expects “all of the earth” to acknowledge the magnitude of what HE and His Son Jesus Christ have done for them (especially those who are saved.)
Almighty Father GOD, through His divine love and grace has provided "The Great Pardon" to all of his creatures created in His image and likeness. They have been given the opportunity to be receive His precious gift of Salvation, where each individual’s spirit part of their tripartite being will be sealed and secured by Holy Spirit until Jesus Christ returns. Jesus has shed His precious blood that literally paid the price for the redemption, justification and reconciliation of all mankind allowing the re-establishment of the broken relationship with GOD, caused by Adam and Eve's disobedience. GOD has made the "Salvation of the Soul", the total responsibility of those who have received the gift of salvation, and has provided them with Holy Spirit, The Spirit of Truth, The Helper and The Comforter to assist them in successfully achieving it.
Many who preach the Gospel, when asked to explain Salvation in the fewest words possible use the phrase,"FAITH PLUS NOTHING." That is fine for all whose only goal is to eventually go to heaven, but Almighty Father GOD wants to know who His "overcomers" are. He will determine through the actions and works performed by those who become saved, how much they sincerely understand His love, and appreciate the unparalleled, magnanimous, magnitude of His Divine Mercy and Grace that He has extended to them that was absolutely, totally undeserved. Scripture tells us in 1 Thessalonians 4 that when Jesus Christ returns for the resurrection of The Church, that the saved will meet the Lord in the air. Then they will appear (2 Cor 5:9) before The Judgement Seat of Christ, where each one will be receive the things done in the body, according to what they has done, whether good or bad”. Those who have "heard with their spiritual ears" and properly responded with obediance, as evidenced by their works (after Salvation), will be rewarded by being invited to the “Wedding Feast”. That feast is the marriage of the Lamb (Jesus Christ) with His wife, The Church (Body of Christ) that consists of the saved who have proven themselves to be ready by their obedience to diligently seek Him and live righteously. They are referred to as the “overcomers” in Revelation 3:5 where it says that, (“He who overcomes will be clothed in white garments”. More supporting scriptures in Revelation 19:8-9 says, they have been granted the right to be dressed in fine bright linen, that represents their righteous acts. These are those who have “matured in God’s grace”, and are therefore worthy of the feast with their groom Jesus Christ. Verse 9 continues by saying that, “Blessed are those who are called to this marriage supper.” After all this has taken place, Jesus Christ returns to the earth as King of Kings, and Lord of Lords, with His overcoming saints, to rule for a thousand year period over all the nations of the earth. This will be referred to as “The Millennial Reign” where Jesus Christ will establish His most excellent "Kingdom of The Heavens", that represents the fulfillment of Gods’ prophetic word in Bible scripture.
I think I'm beginning to hear the words of that old spiritual hymn again, that I mentioned earlier at the very beginning of this writing;
“When we all get to heaven, What a day of rejoicing it will be, When we all see Jesus, We will sing and shout the victory.When we all get to heaven, it will undoubtedly be a day of great rejoicing. But when we all see Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior for the first time, standing before His judgment seat, Will we all be able to sing and shout the victory? Will you?
"HE WHO HAS EARS TO HEAR, LET HIM HEAR"