As a Christian, I find it quite common whenever listening to how others confidently speak of their dearly departed who “are now at peace in Heaven.” Often times, people enduring a period of grief tend to take Heaven for granted and will usually utter sayings such as, “I know you’re at peace in Heaven now, no longer suffering and I will see you again someday.” The shocking part about this delusional ideation is in many cases, these loved ones rarely sought the truth about being saved when they were still alive. In essence, the mourners falsely believe Heaven will miraculously safeguard not only the lost souls of others; but their own defiled souls as well. The reality of this sort of thinking paints a totally different picture which is so profoundly revealed in the following scriptures:
(Galatians 5:13-21) “You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love. For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ If you bite and devour each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other. So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other so that you are not to do whatever you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity, and debauchery, idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions, and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.”
I sometimes wonder if people believing in such a falsehood have ever really taken the time to study their Bibles, or participate in any form of spiritual comprehension because their comments appear to derive from a place of Biblical incompetence. At this moment, I’m referring to countless people of whom have never taken the time to cultivate a personal relationship with our Heavenly Father; but rather are focused on fulfilling their lustful desires through daily unrighteous living. We simply cannot claim to believe in God without getting to really knowing Him first. Ultimately, our personal relationship with Jesus Christ through faith and reverence is the first step in seeking the truth.
(1 John 2:3-4) “Now by this, we know that we have come to know God: if we keep his commandments. The one who says ‘I have come to know God’ and yet does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in such a person.”
The above scripture is a perfect example of claiming to love Christ, but failing to back it up through our actions. I know folks who use their free will to continue a lifestyle of sinning; refusing to repent because the pleasure of their fleshly desires supersedes a spiritual commitment. Millions of people want to enter Heaven, but only a handful are in effect willing to change their old way of living to acceptable behavior pleasing to God. Sometimes, we all must refocus on introspective reasoning to determine precisely what our hearts are made of otherwise, we could find ourselves on a pathway leading straight to Hell.
(Matthew 7:13-14) “Enter through the narrow gate, because the gate is wide and the way is spacious that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it. How narrow is the gate and difficult the way that leads to life, and there are few who find it!”
The key to entering Heaven is in the God-breathed Living Word, so all we have to do is to wholeheartedly partake in this daily bread. Getting to know our Savior, Jesus Christ will open our eyes to the truth which will prepare us to tread the narrow path, instead of taking a leap into the pits of eternal damnation. Our way of getting to know someone involves learning about them; their hobbies, occupation, common interests, origin, faith—basically, the total sum of who they are as a person. After becoming acquainted with someone, oftentimes a genuine connection blossoms as we begin spending time together, talking, laughing, crying, praying and so much more.
The fact that God resides in Heaven above should not prevent us from establishing an even deeper personal friendship with Him. On the contrary, it is easier to get to know Jesus Christ because His Holy Spirit indwells those of us willing to accept Him as Lord and Savior through unwavering faith. Developing a special bond with our fellow man requires that we put forth the effort to build a friendship, which may or may not prevail in the end. However, seeking a genuine relationship with our Creator is not only more rewarding, but it is never-ending, unequaled to any other friendship unearthed in a lifetime.
(Proverbs 18:24) “A man of too many friends comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” (John 15:13) "Greater love has no one than this that one lay down his life for his friends.”
The next time you are doing everything possible to nurture mortal friendships you may want to consider how vitally important it is to cultivate a friendship with Christ. Our earthly friends will not get us into Heaven, nor religion, or even good deeds. Living faithfully in truth led by the Holy Spirit will take us all the way home to a place of everlasting life incomparable to any other existence ever experienced in this present age. God personally gives all who are thirsty an invitation to dwell with Him.
(Revelation 22:17) The Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let the one who hears say, “Come!” Let the one who is thirsty come, and let the one who wishes take the free gift of the water of life.
Be prepared to teach others about the Gospel of Jesus Christ so they will not be deceived into believing they are inevitably Heaven bound. Make it crystal clear to those falsely believing their past loved ones are in Heaven by unveiling the truth behind their unrealistic thinking. Heaven is obtainable for all those seeking peace and love amongst brethren through the acceptance of Jesus Christ. Share the following scripture and put to shame anyone believing that Heaven is an expected dwelling for the dead. God clearly describes Heaven through His disciple, John and how the victorious followers will dwell with Christ throughout all eternity just as the unbelievers are fated for eternal damnation:
(Revelation 21:1-8) Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”
He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty, I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life. Those who are victorious will inherit all this, and I will be their God and they will be my children. But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters, and all liars—they will be consigned to the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.”
Given all that you have just read, I have a couple questions to leave for your contemplation. Are you Heaven bound? If you are to mistakably assume your pathway to Heaven is on auto-drive, I encourage you to seek out the one true road leading to Heaven because there are many roads which lead to Hell. Most of us hope to enter through the Pearly Gates, but in the end, few will find the golden key awaiting those genuinely willing to accept Jesus Christ and live out their lives accordingly. If you never take the time to read the Bible, How in the world will you ever know if your name is written therein?
(Revelation 20:15) “Anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire.”
By, Teresa Wiltz