Heaven is our Father’s homePublished 4:01am Monday, July 25, 2011
Jesus referred to heaven as, “My Father’s Home.”
“Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. There is more than enough room in my Father’s home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am. And you know the way to where I am going.” (John 14:1-4, New Living Translation)
Let’s notice five wonderful— five glorious truths that Jesus discloses about Heaven— His Father’s home.
Heaven is spacious. Jesus wants His disciples to know that when they get to heaven— there will be no “no vacancy” signs. “There is more than enough room in my Father’s home.” (Vs. 2) It is most unfortunate that the King James Version translators selected the word, “mansions,” (“In my Father’s house are many mansions…”) because it causes our focus regarding heaven to be on the deluxe accommodations. Most Bible experts agree that, the original word, which simply means, “dwelling place,” is better translated “apartment.” That’s not to say that the accommodations won’t be grandeur, beautiful, and luxurious. The Bible uses the most beautiful images to describe heaven to us.
Isaiah, Paul, and John received glimpses into heaven. And what they described was incredible—all of them struggling to find words that could describe the beauty and grandeur. It is in this way, the Bible let’s us know something of the glory and the splendor of heaven. But let’s compare that with Jesus’ description of heaven. “There is more than enough room in… my Father’s home.” (Vs. 2) Isaiah, Paul, and John— they spoke with excitement about the beauty, but Jesus seems rather unmoved by it all. The reason for Jesus seemingly simple description of heaven is that Jesus’ emphasis here is not on the grandeur of heaven, but on its spaciousness. The emphatic term is “more than enough.” Heaven is spacious.
Many today try to limit the space available in heaven, but the Bible never limits the size of heaven. God wants everyone to go there. No doubt some rooms will never be occupied, but… there is room for everybody.
Heaven is not only spacious— but the Father’s home, is also Jesus’ home. Jesus says that heaven is “Where I am.” (Vs. 3) Jesus— God the Son, was there at Creation. In fact, He was the agent of creation. At the proper time, the Bible tells us that He “humbled Himself”— that is He left all the luxury, splendor, and majesty of heaven— to come to earth as a baby, and live for about 33 years on this earth. He came on a dying mission. When Jesus completed His work, He returned to heaven, and it is there He will stay until He returns for His church. Until then, He will be “Seated at the right hand of God.” (Colossians 3:1, NIV)
Heaven being Jesus’ home is important to our understanding of heaven— in fact, this is what makes heaven, heaven! It’s not the beauty— it’s not the “mansion,” or the “deluxe apartment.” It’s not putting on new bodies. It’s not even the absence of sorrow or pain. None of that makes heaven, heaven. It’s Jesus! That’s heaven! It makes no difference what heaven is like— or where it is— if Jesus is there— it will be heaven. The gospel song says, “I want to see my Savior’s face—‘cause heaven is a wonderful place!”
Heaven is also our home. Jesus says, “I am going to prepare a place for you… (Vs. 2) He says, “…so that you will always be with me where I am.” (Vs. 3) The Father’s home— is the address God wants us to have as our final and eternal address. However, for it to be our home too— we have to make a reservation. And that reservation for where we will spend eternity is made while we live this short time on this earth. They won’t take walk-ins, and there won’t be scalpers by the pearly gates with extra tickets. All details involving this real estate transaction must be closed before this life is over. Our reservation for heaven comes one way— through faith— faith in God’s Son— and His atoning work on the cross— Jesus taking care of our sin problem. Jesus discloses how to make the Father’s home, our home. “Trust in God and trust also in me.” (Vs. 1) I want to invite you— if you haven’t made your reservations for heaven— do it today— a split second decision to “faith” Christ is all it takes. And His home will also be your home.
Since heaven is our eternal home, here’s something about the Father’s home that’s right up there in importance. His Father’s home is accessible. What that means is that when it comes time— we’ll be able to get there. That’s so practical. We’ll be able to get there first of all, because we know the way. Jesus told His disciples, “You know the way to where I am going.” (Vs. 4) Jesus never said the disciples knew where heaven was— but the disciples knew the right road to get on to get them there. It was the narrow way— the way of faith. The way of Jesus. In this same conversation Jesus said that He Himself was “the way.” They knew Jesus. They knew “the way.” If we know Jesus, then we know “the way.”
But there’s something even better than that— especially comforting to people like me who aren’t good with a map, and have no sense of direction. Transportation is provided. “I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am.” (Vs. 3).
It’s wonderful that we can own a little parcel in glory land. But ownership is worthless unless we have a way of taking possession. If we can’t get there from here— it’s no good to us. So Jesus wants His disciples not to worry— when the time comes— when our apartment is ready— He personally will come get us and take us there.
One other beautiful thing about heaven. It is sure. The Bible wants us to know that our salvation— our place in heaven— it is something we can know. We can know for sure. John penned his letter and his gospel for this purpose. “So that you may know that you have eternal life.” (1 John 5:13, NIV). Jesus’ words throughout our text, in the original language are very precise and forceful. He means business. His disciples understood his confidence in what He was saying.
But the young lady could not resist. From time to time she would take a walk. She might even take her mother or her sister along. And they would just so happen to find themselves in the neighborhood of her betrothed. And as they got closer, they could hear the sounds of construction— of hammers, and saws. They might even walk by and see the progress— and then… she knew. She had no doubts. She was sure. Because he was preparing for her a place— she was sure that he would come get her.
Jesus drew from this practice— this custom— to speak of the surety of heaven. The disciples would have known exactly what he was talking about. Because He was preparing a place for them— they knew—they were sure— He would return for them. We have that same assurance from Christ.
For all of us— it’s all about heaven. If your eternal destination is not heaven— it’s about getting there. And if you are a Christian— if Jesus, right now, is preparing your room— it’s still all about heaven— about getting others there.
It’s all about heaven— spacious, Jesus’ home, our home, accessible and sure— but only for those who know Christ.
First Baptist Church