Red Village Church

The Beautiful New Jerusalem – Revelation 21: 9-27

All right, well good morning and welcome to Red Village Church. If I did not mention, my name is Aaron and I’m the Preaching Pastor here. I’m glad you’re with us today.

So a lot of our families are gone on spring break this week. And I know there’s a little bit of sickness running through the church right now. So I’m really delighted and glad that you’re all here.

So if you have a Bible with you, if it opened up to the book of Revelation. Today our text from study will come from Revelation chapter 21, starting in verse 9. And if you don’t have a Bible with you, there are Bibles kind of scattered throughout the pews. And so if you want to just grab one of those and open that up. So Revelation is right at the very end of the Bible. Revelation 21.

I’m going to start reading in verse 9. I’m going to read through the entire chapter. I’m going to skip a few verses. I’ll let you know when we get to that. Verse 19, there’s a whole bunch of jewels listed. And rather than read through them, I’ll actually kind of let your eyes kind of run through those.

But Revelation 21, starting in verse 9.

I’ll be reading out of the English Standard Version. So I’ll read the sacred passage and I’ll pray and then we’ll get to work. This is what the Bible says.

Then came one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues and spoke to me, saying, “Come, I will show you the Bride, the wife of the Lamb.” 10 And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great, high mountain, and showed me the holy city Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from God, 11 having the glory of God, its radiance like a most rare jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal. 12 It had a great, high wall, with twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels, and on the gates the names of the twelve tribes of the sons of Israel were inscribed— 13 on the east three gates, on the north three gates, on the south three gates, and on the west three gates. 14 And the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and on them were the twelve names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

15 And the one who spoke with me had a measuring rod of gold to measure the city and its gates and walls. 16 The city lies foursquare, its length the same as its width. And he measured the city with his rod, 12,000 stadia. Its length and width and height are equal. 17 He also measured its wall, 144 cubits by human measurement, which is also an angel’s measurement. 18 The wall was built of jasper, while the city was pure gold, like clear glass. 19 The foundations of the wall of the city were adorned with every kind of jewel. The first was jasper, the second sapphire, the third agate, the fourth emerald, 20 the fifth onyx, the sixth carnelian, the seventh chrysolite, the eighth beryl, the ninth topaz, the tenth chrysoprase, the eleventh jacinth, the twelfth amethyst. 21 And the twelve gates were twelve pearls, each of the gates made of a single pearl, and the street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass.

22 And I saw no temple in the city, for its temple is the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb. 23 And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and its lamp is the Lamb. 24 By its light will the nations walk, and the kings of the earth will bring their glory into it, 25 and its gates will never be shut by day—and there will be no night there. 26 They will bring into it the glory and the honor of the nations. 27 But nothing unclean will ever enter it, nor anyone who does what is detestable or false, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s book of life.

Let’s pray.

Lord, it’s good to be here this morning. Thank you just for this gift. Thank you for calling your people to gather together. And so Lord, I pray that as we gather together today, that you would bless this time, bless the preaching of your word. Please help me to be a good communicator. And Lord, I pray for the power of your spirit that you would indeed speak to our hearts. And indeed speak to our hearts. I pray this in Jesus’ name. Amen.

So when my wife, Tia, and I first moved to seminary, we were kind of excited about the process of trying to find a new church to plug into. And part of the excitement we had was the idea of taking maybe a little bit more time to visit churches that had maybe similar doctrine to what we held, but maybe just, you know, different types of philosophy of ministry and how they live that doctrine out.

So we visited churches of different sizes. Some smaller in size, some average in size, some much bigger in size, which was kind of interesting to observe that. We visited churches that, based on their philosophy of ministry, would emphasize things a little differently, giving different weight to different things, which was pretty fascinating to kind of see that.

And we visited churches that had very different expectations on what Sunday services look like, particularly when it comes to the length of a Sunday morning service. So there were some that were very time-sensitive, where every minute of the service was budgeted and accounted for. Where often there’d be like a countdown clock in an easy-to-see location, meant to help to keep everything, everyone on time. Often these were maybe a little bit shorter services. But then we went to other churches where things were not as time-sensitive, where things were not on the shorter side of a service but on the longer side. And of all the different churches that we visited, there was one particular on the longer side.

And I say this graciously, the much longer side. And this is the one that really sticks out to T&I even still today. Now I really don’t want to sound critical or harsh here, because we actually had a great experience at this particular church. And even over time I got to learn more about this church. It’s an incredibly fruit-bearing church. The length of the church, maybe some of you were thinking about that this morning, but the length of the church was just not something that we were used to.

So the service we were in, it started out with a number of songs, maybe a few more than what we would normally sing. Some of the songs were a little longer, many repeated courses. After that there was followed by a sermon. So at least at the start it felt kind of normal. Maybe a little longer, but fairly normal. However, we soon found out that it actually wasn’t the sermon that we were hearing.

Rather this was more of like a pre-sermon warm-up, which was followed by a few more songs, and then the sermon, which was much longer than what we were used to. Like well over an hour in length. Which was followed up by some more singing. And then post-sermon, sermon. And by the time everything was said and done, it was like three and a half, four hours of the service. And I think we actually slipped out a little early as things were wrapping up.

Now, say it again. This is an incredible experience we had. A God-honoring, fruit-bearing church. Just not something we were expecting. And for us, about halfway through this service, we started to wonder, like, are we ever going to leave? Like, are we ever going to leave?

And this was like causing like maybe some panic, some anxiety in us. And we had this fear that for the rest of our lives, we would be in this never-ending church service. Now, I tell you that story not to complain about a long church service. Rather I just wanted to maybe expose maybe a false notion that we have when it comes to heaven. To eternal life with the Lord. That maybe we’re tempted to believe that heaven’s going to be like this one long church service.

With one long, boring church sermon after another. Where all we will do is have sermons and songs over and over again. And like we’ll never leave those things behind. And for all eternity, like, that’s all we’re going to do. Where we have like some anxieties and fear that we’re ever going to be forever like bored in heaven. And never able to slip out.

Almost wishing we were somewhere else. Anywhere else. This false notion that I think we might be tempted to have is something I do hope and pray that God will change our hearts as we continue to work through this sermon series of the end of the book of Revelation.

So that God, through his word, through his Holy Spirit, would create excitement, anticipation for us concerning heaven. And that which is to come. So we don’t actually dread the thought of heaven. Rather we’re excited.

We’re eager. We long for that day to come. Now before I get our text today, which is another text that gives us details on eternal life, I do want to briefly remind us where we left off a couple weeks ago. Which is at the start of chapter 21. That details the start of eternity that is to come. Which in our text last week, eternal life, would come down as a gift from God.

Where God will give to his people a new heaven, a new earth, a new Jerusalem. As God makes all things new. And as God gives this incredible gift to his people, this will be in a physical place where we will dwell in. Where as God’s people will have physical bodies. Where we will dwell in these physical bodies actually with the Lord himself. Where we will be in perfect relationship, perfect fellowship with him.

Where our kind, gracious God will be so near and present to us, to his people. That we read last time that he promised to actually personally dry every tear from our eye. And as he dries our tears, he will fill our hearts with his joy, with his peace. In our text last time, as God’s people dwell with God in perfect relationship, in perfect fellowship, in perfect joy, in perfect peace. We saw that we will never suffer again with any kind of suffering. Including the suffering that comes from death.

Eternal life that is to come for God’s people. Death will never rear its ugly head. So as we walked through last time, the start of chapter 21, now today as we work through the end of chapter 21, we get more details on what heaven’s going to look like.

And we’re going to continue to see that heaven is not going to be boring. That it will be filled with such glory, such beauty, that it will forever capture our hearts and our attention. Where we will rejoice, where we will be glad. Where we will be filled with such gratitude, because we know we actually will never have to leave it. So that is our intro. If you want to look back with me, starting in verse 9.

And if you’re new here, just keep your Bible open. I’m just going to walk us through verse by verse. So verse 9 where we read that John the author gives more information on what he was able to observe in his revelation. In our text he wrote that one of the seven angels, who had seven bowls full of the seven last plagues, came over to speak to him. The seven angels, the seven bowls, the seven plagues. This is a reference to actually what John previously recorded in chapters 15 and 16 of Revelation.

As judgment was falling on the earth. So I’ll let you look through those passages as a refresher on that scene, chapter 15, 16. We also see in chapter 17, very similar language, as we see here in our text today. Where seemingly the same angel came to speak a word of judgment against Babylon, which you’ve been with us in our study. You know at this point Babylon, as he referred to, it was a woman who stood in opposition to our Lord. And this woman stood in contrast also to the bride of Christ, which is made up of all of God’s people for all time.

So here in chapter 21, John is giving a further comparison, contrasting, where he’s comparing and contrasting the wicked city Babylon, which will be eternally judged. And now the holy city, the new Jerusalem, which will be eternally blessed. And really this comparison, contrast, as you read through Revelation, as you read through Revelation, is all over the place.

There’s the righteous, there’s the unrighteous, the saved, the judged, eternal life, eternal death, eternal joy, eternal anguish in ministry, the book of life, which our text talks about at the end, and the book of deeds. Keep going in our text. As John spotted the angel, we see that the angel wanted to come over and have a bit of a conversation with John. Where in the conversation, the angel actually would prove to be almost like a bit of a heavenly tour guide. So in the text, John, from the angel John, come, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb. Which for us is the book of Revelation, we know this is chapter 19, it’s referring to the marriage supper of the Lamb, where the Lord Jesus Christ will throw a huge party, a huge celebration for his bride, his church, which is made up of all of the redeemed people of God, all who have by grace, through faith, churned from sin and trusted in Jesus Christ, the one who shed his blood to bring about forgiveness of sin.

We know in the book of Revelation, this redeemed people of God, this great bride of Christ, is made up of people from every tribe, tongue, nation, language, of people who have formed such a massive number, and Revelation is actually too large to count. So in our text, the tour guide angel wanted John to come and look, to see what was going to take place. So in verse 10, we see that John is like carried away in the Spirit, which took John to a mountain, a great high mountain. Now, there’s a couple things here. So this mountain here, possibly, is something more to be read in symbolic terms, communicating some type of symbolic vantage point. There’s a lot in Revelation, as you know, that’s symbolic, including a lot we see in our text today.

But for me, I do kind of wonder if this is more than just symbolism, but in this new heavens, new earth, this is actually a real physical mountain that we’re taking up to. So for me, I actually think mountains will be present in the new heavens, in the new earth. Mountains, actually, for us to explore and enjoy.

Second, John, as he’s taken up to the mountain, it should take our mind to the book of Ezekiel, the Old Testament, particularly verses, chapters 40 through 48, where in that text, God took Ezekiel, the prophet Ezekiel, up on a mountain to see the temple restored, which in our text today, has a few connections to the Old Testament temple, and actually a few connections to the Old Testament book of Ezekiel. So just take note of that. Third, John, here, being taken up to the mountain, I also wonder if our mind should be taken to Moses. So remember how the story of Moses, really throughout, there’s a lot of mountains? You know, the burning bush up on the mountain, is Exodus 3. Moses would meet with God on the mountain time and time again, where he would see the glory of God as he hid himself in the cleft of the mountain.

Fourth, I also wonder if John, for him personally in this scene, if this took him back to, remember when the Lord took John and a few others up on a mountain, where he uniquely showed his glory as the Lord Jesus was transfigured before their eyes? You know, I don’t want to overread here in the text, but I think there’s a lot going on as John is taken up on the mountain. This is significant.

Back to our text. When a tour guide, the angel took John up on the mountain, we read that the angel wanted John to see the holy city, Jerusalem, that came down from heaven as a good gift from a good, kind God. In our text, as John put his eyes on the holy city, he didn’t see something that was boring, something that was unimpressive. He wasn’t like, wow, this is kind of like ho-hum, to see the city come down. Rather, as John saw this vision, as he saw Jerusalem, the new Jerusalem coming down, he saw something that was glorious. It was mesmerizing.

It was filled with beauty, as this heavenly city was filled with the glory of God. We had incredible radiance all about it. And this is like capturing to John here in this vision. In the text, John described the best he could, what he could see. What he wrote in the text is like seeing almost like seeing this new Jerusalem, something like a jasper, clear as crystal. At least to me, I think we get the sense that John actually didn’t have words to fully describe what he saw.

It’s kind of like, I don’t know, like a rare jewel, maybe like a jasper? He’s struggling to find words here. Maybe for us, maybe think of trying to describe a sunrise on a perfect day to someone who’s never been to the Grand Canyon or never even seen pictures to it.

Like, how do you describe the indescribable? I kind of feel like that’s John here. Like he’s struggling to find words. He’s struggling to find an analogy to help his readers get a sense of the glory that he saw. I don’t know, it’s kind of like this rare jewel. Verse 12.

More details on this glory-filled city. We see a great and high wall with 12 gates, 12 angels at the gates, with each gate having inscribed on it a name from the 12 tribes of Israel. The high walls, the high gates, the angels at the gates. I think this is a community held strongly fortified and protected as the city is. So protected, there’s no fear of any danger coming its way. Although we’re going to be in just a bit, a little bit of danger.

After all, judgment has already come to all evil. But this here, this is a picture of safety, of security. Let me also mention that here in verse 12, the 12 tribes of Israel, I think this is meant to signify all those who had faith in the Old Testament. We get to verse 14. We also see there’s a reference to the 12 apostles. I think this is meant to signify Old Testament, New Testament, all of God’s people through all history.

John can see them. They’re all there. Let me furthermore mention that I think the 12 tribes, the 12 apostles in this passage, is also meant to show some unity within God’s word. Old Testament, New Testament, one unified word, which we’ll see more in just a second. Verse 13. We read how each of the four walls of the city had three gates on them.

There’s the west wall. There’s also what Ezekiel describes, chapter 48. Verse 14. The wall of the city had 12 foundations, and on them were the names of the 12 apostles of the Lamb, which is referenced in the New Testament here. Also further pointing to the unity of God’s word. This week as I was thinking about this verse here, my mind was thinking about the New Testament apostles, and for all eternity we’re going to see just how true that is in this new city that is to come.

Keep going. Verse 15. We read that the one who spoke to John, who took John on this heavenly tour, we see that he also did so with a measuring rod in his hand. And not just some like average measuring rod, rather a glorious one. A measuring rod, our text tells us, to measure the city, its gates and its walls. And as the city was measured, read in verse 16, that the city was a perfect square, that the length and the width were matching.

And as the angel measured the city, our text tells us that it came to 12,000 stadii, which scholars estimate is maybe around like 1,400 to 1,500 miles. So this is a massive city. That’s roughly the same distance as the United States.

So this city actually covers like a good portion of the United States. A gloriously massive city. Or as I say that, even though I do think we already see a massive city in terms of the size, I think it should be read symbolically. I’ll explain more in just a second. Keep going. End of verse 16.

We see not only with the length and the width equal, that it’s a perfect square, but actually it’s a perfect cube. Verse 17. He also measures the wall, 144 cubits by human measurement, which is also an angel’s measurement. The 144 cubits here, that’s going to refer either to the height of the wall or maybe actually more likely the width of the wall, how wide it was. And this here just only adds to the picture of security of the city, like how impenetrable it is and I’ll explain why I think the measurement is more symbolic than literal dimensions, although maybe perhaps both are true. So first, the size of the city.

Some scholars believe it’s actually roughly the same size of the known world in John’s day, like the ancient Middle East. So possibly here, this is meant to communicate like all the earth makes up the city. And I do think there maybe is something that we need to consider.

But second, more importantly, the temple of God. And in particular, to the holy of holies. So remember that in the Old Testament? So in the Old Testament, the holy of holies, it was a perfectly cube-sized room where in that room, the fullness of God would dwell, where every square inch of the holy of holies was filled with the glory of God. And I think that’s what John is seeing here, what he’s communicating to us here in this impressive new Jerusalem. That this incredible city is filled with the fullness of the glory of God.

Like every square inch of it. Every square inch filled with glorious perfection. Friends, once again, that’s not boring. Every bit of heaven. Every bit. God’s glory will be there in full.

Keep going. As the fullness of God and His glory fill the city, we see more details to communicate how beautiful the city will be. Verse 18, the walls of the city are built of jasper. The city was made of pure gold, clear as gas. The foundations of the city were adorned with every kind of jewel. I’m just going to let your eyes through 20.

As you run your eyes through these different jewels that adorn the city, just note, I think, to help connect us to the Old Testament again. Remember how the priest would have a breastplate? And on the breastplate there would be the 12 tribes and 12 jewels. I think that’s what’s happening here. In addition, these jewels that fill heaven, it’s described, sorry, Eden as a place filled with precious jewels. I think that’s what we’re seeing here.

So not just a new Jerusalem, but this is like a new Eden. We’re going to get actually more of this and see this more clearly when we get to chapter 22 next week. So just note, though, as we look ahead to heaven, the glory that is there, the real part is actually looking back to see what Eden was before sin entered in. John is able to see the beauty of the foundation. He saw further beauty that surrounded the city that ran throughout the city. As he saw 12 pearls in each of the 12 gates, with each gate made of a single pearl.

That’s obviously where we get the phrase pearly gates from concerning heaven. And as John saw the pearly gates, he saw that they were connected to the city streets, which the text tells us is the phrase streets of gold when people talk about heaven. And if you’re like me, this is something that’s really kind of fun to wonder about, to wonder and consider what beauty that is going to look like. Verse 22. After John noticed all this incredible beauty running throughout this most impressive God-glory-filled city, then we see John write something or notice something that wasn’t present in the city. It wasn’t a text, it was a temple.

As he simply wrote, and I saw no temple in the city. How he wrote this, you kind of get the impression that he was actually maybe looking for a physical temple. After all, in Jerusalem, for years and years, the temple was at the center. And the temple was this massive temple inside Jerusalem that for miles around you could see it, but it was destroyed a few years before John wrote the Revelation. So it makes sense. As he saw this new Jerusalem, he wondered, I wonder where is the temple?

But then we see why there was no temple. He explained, there’s no physical temple included in this new city plans. As he wrote, for the temple is the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb. The temple in the Old Testament existed to be a place because the new Jerusalem, God’s presence, His joy, His peace will fill the entire city for all who live in it. Keep going in our text. Not only does John see there’s no temple, but in verse 23, you see the city had no need for a sun or a moon to shine to give its light.

The reason why our text tells us for the glory of God gives its light and its lamp is the Lamb will walk and the kings of the earth will bring glory into it. Now let me hit pause here just for a second to explain a couple of things. First, there’s no sun or no need for the sun or moon. So it’s possible, there’s no sun, there’s no moon, and the new heaven is the new earth.

But I kind of think this is maybe read a little bit more figuratively. There actually will be a sun, a lamp in heaven. But I think in our text, John is making a point. There’s no need for the sun, no need for the moon, simply because the glory of God gives off light. He fills us with light. Second, this week, I also wonder if John is picking up on a theme of light and darkness that he uses throughout his gospel account as well as his epistles, the darkness of sin and sin cannot overcome it.

I kind of think this maybe is communicated here in our text. In heaven, the light of God found in Jesus Christ, it penetrates everything. So there never will be the darkness of sin ever again. In verse 27, there will never be darkness of night in our hearts. Let me also mention the third thing, the nations, the kings. The number is so large, it’s unable to count.

The number is so large, it’s actually made up of people both great and small. I mentioned people from every tribe, tongue, nation, language. Keep going to the text, verse 25, because the darkness of sin will never touch this new Jerusalem.

We see even though the city has a fortified wall, sin will never have even the slightest opportunity to kind of maybe sneak back in. I said again, sin, chapter 20, is all damned to hell in the final judgment day. So in this great life that is to come for God’s people, we’ll never have to worry about anything, any sin ever again.

The gates are open. We have pure, which how sweet is that going to be? Like never having to fight like our own sin, our own hearts ever again. Never even being tempted to sin again. Maybe never have to deal with other people’s sin on us ever again. The light of God will bring eternal healing, comfort, peace, joy to our hearts forever.

The glory is so beautiful, so filled with awe, that through the gates it will bring the glory and honor of the nations. Now it’s a little uncertain exactly what the glory and honor of the nations might be. This week I kind of wonder if it’s maybe something to do with heavenly treasures that Jesus tells us we’re to store up. Treasures that we get in worship of him. Let me also mention scholars have wondered that this glory and honor of the nations is maybe more of a reference to like all of the good things that we enjoy in life. That we’re actually brought into the next life.

But in like a more of a heightened, perfected way. Which, that’s an incredible thought to have. A thought I think even scripture gives us freedom to even like kind of consider and ponder. Now for me, as you know, many of you know, I love sports. And I wonder if in the glory and honor of the nations, like sports might be coming in. And I kind of wonder what’s that going to look like?

Or maybe in the glory and the honor of the nations, maybe something to do with like learning or some type of education that might be there in some levels. Or maybe it’s like some type form of like art. I mean, who knows? As I mentioned, I think it’s appropriate to consider what that might be. Just by the way, maybe a little side door on this note. This is why I love the book Heaven by Randy Alcorn.

If you’ve not read that book, I encourage you to read it. Throughout this book, Alcorn just kind of wonders what might be there. What the glory and the honor of the nations might be. Whatever it is, it should have a lot of excitement around it. Whatever it is, ain’t going to be boring. I found this morning at Texans.

More details that actually won’t, which won’t be there. In our text, we read that nothing unclean will enter into this eternal city. Nor anyone who does that which is detestable or false are the only ones let into this glorious city are those who are written in the Lamb’s book of life. Which is another word in Revelation. Warning that we really must put our faith in Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God. Friend, that’s the only way.

It’s just through faith in Jesus Christ. That’s the only way we can enter into this eternal city to come. It’s by putting our faith in Jesus Christ. What Jesus Christ did on the cross to take on the punishment of our sin. Putting our faith in His resurrection from the dead on the third day. Without faith in Jesus.

Friend, listen. You will not be let into the glorious city. Rather, throughout Revelation, you will be eternally judged. Now, as I start to close, I want to do so first by giving you a handful of reasons just to further tease out why heaven is just not going to be boring. Why it’s not going to feel like this one never-ending church service that you’ll forever be stuck in. After that, I want to briefly talk to why it’s important to have this right understanding of heaven.

And it actually is really important. Important just even as we live today. And finally, I just want to give you some few brief thoughts on how we can fight against the feeling or the belief that heaven is going to be boring and how we can fight to have, like, right thoughts about the joy of heaven that is to come. But first, let me give you a few things on why heaven will not be boring. And there’s a number of things that we see in our text. So first, heaven will not be boring because the fullness of God will be there.

And this is kind of like me playing the trump card on the opening hand, right? Friends, this is why heaven is not going to be boring. All of the fullness of God will be there. Completely there. His glory will forever cover every inch. All of His love.

All of His grace. All of His mercy. All of His wisdom. All of His understanding. All of it will be there. And it will all be there for us to learn more and more and more about forever and ever and ever.

That’s not boring. There’s nothing boring or uninteresting or ho-hum about the fullness of God and His glory. There’s nothing boring or uninteresting or ho-hum about the fullness of God and His glory. As God dwells His people forever and ever, it’s not like, you know, after a thousand years in heaven, it’s like, you know what? I think we’re good. I think we completely mastered our understanding about God.

You know, there’s nothing for us to learn about Him ever again. And so we kind of like look at each other and it’s like, okay, what now are we supposed to do? No. We continue probably even to be surprised, continue to be fascinated by our God and who He is. That’s not boring. You know, this week also is kind of, remember the story I was saying about the story of Jesus after His resurrection?

Remember how He met a few men on the road to Emmaus where He sat them down and He opened up the scriptures to them and how He taught them how everything in the Bible is pointed to Him? Remember how those men had their hearts like warmed within them as they learned about the Lord? Friends, that’s going to be us forever.

But in an even more perfected state where forever our hearts are going to be warmed as we learn and continue to learn about our Lord and His incredible love for us. Not boring. That’s fully satisfying. Second, heaven will not be a place for us to be in. Heaven will not be a place for us to be in. Heaven will not be boring because all of God’s people will be there.

All who have their names written in the book of life will be there forever and ever. And if that thought actually causes a little bit of anxiety for you, spending eternity with certain people, may I remind you that all of our sin and their sin will be removed. Thus all things related to sin that can make relationships a little difficult will be able to be a little bit more comfortable with God and His love for us. And I know I’ve said this but someone once said that because the sin is removed that once we get to heaven we’re all going to be each other’s best friends. And how sweet will that be? For all eternity fellowshipping with each other as best friends is just like talking to each other, like testifying like how we came to faith or all different ways that God was at work in our life.

Not only in heaven we’ll be hearing this from the ones that we know, the ones that we love who died in Christ, but think about it, all of our heroes of our faith will be there as well. Whether it be heroes in the scriptures, or heroes in the Bible, we’re going to hear just more about their stories from personal accounts. We’re going to talk about Jonah and ask Jonah what was it like being in the belly of the whale?

We’re going to talk to Hannah and ask her what was it like to give your son Samuel up to become a priest? We’re going to have conversations with Mary, the mother of our Lord, and ask her what was that like? That’s going to be fascinating. Or throughout all these great heroes, we’re going to talk with Augustine or Luther or Calvin or Spurgeon or my favorite Gladys Alward or Corey Tinboom or George Mueller. Can you imagine having conversations with our heroes? They’re going to be fascinated to hear our stories as well.

It’s not just our heroes that we’ll fellowship with. I’m most interested in talking to the normal people who walk by faith, who have been forgotten by the world. Or how sweet it’s going to be to talk to the nursery worker who for years and years and years prayed over babies as she changed their diapers.

Or just the countless moms and dads who faithfully did family worship, who raised their children in the fear and discipline of the Lord, who was used by the Lord and labeled maybe the worst in society, yet before his dying breath was captured by the grace of God found in Jesus Christ. Friends, there’s nothing boring about that. Third, heaven will not be boring because all the things we enjoy in this life are going to be there in their glory.

Things they loved and enjoyed were brought in in ways that were fully honoring the Lord. We need to be careful not to get overly dogmatic about these things. However, I think it’s appropriate to wonder, will sports be there? Or movies or games? Exploring? Will our favorite hobbies be there?

Will our family be there? Will we all be there, but maybe in elevated ways with a stain as soon as you’re moved? Maybe another example to help you with your wondering. My family, we love camping. What if there’s camping in heaven, but only the best parts of camping, in elevated, purified ways? And if there’s mosquitoes, they won’t be there.

It’s not boring. Things that we love in this life will be there, but better, way better. In life, there’s a calm. Let me read you one more. Heaven will not be boring because we’ll have jobs. Now, that also may not sound that good to you, but once again, sin will be gone, work will be gone.

And that’s why things apply as I mentioned. We’re seeing a new Eden here. In the first Eden, Adam and Eve, they worked to the glory of God and to their own enjoyment. Work was what they were created to do. Work was a means of worship. And what those jobs would be, who knows.

But whatever we’ll be doing, not only will be filled with joy, that work will not be boring. That’s the first why. Why heaven won’t be boring. Second why, why it’s important for us to understand that, that the scriptures do not teach heaven as one thing. It’s actually really bad theology to think of heaven or see heaven as a killjoy, as boring. And the reason why, one of the reasons why, if you see heaven as a killjoy, as boring, part of the matter is you probably see God as a killjoy.

You see him as boring. I think to be honest with you, we know that He doesn’t want us to be okay. He doesn’t want us to be miserable. He wants us to be happy. The only reason He wants us to be happy is so He doesn’t want us to be miserable. He wants us to be happy.

May He give us the grace to long for that day to come where we’ll be with Him forever and ever in an eternal celebration that we’ll never want to leave. And thankfully an eternal celebration that we’ll never have to leave because He promises that He will never leave nor forsake us.

Let’s pray.

Lord, thank You for eternal life that is to come. Thank You for giving us this word that’s been passed down through the ages that we can read and see and anticipate and wonder all that is to come. Just some excitement, some joy, some wonder, some anticipation. And Lord, please help us to have right, correct thoughts about You and Your Word.

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