Thousands of people say they have been there and have come back here. For several decades, we have heard about near-death experiences and in the beginning, I thought these reports were bogus. Sure, I believed that people had experienced something. But I thought it must have been something like a dream while they were unconscious. Then, as the reports kept coming, along with all the books and movies, I started to consider that these experiences might actually be heaven. If you think about what Christians believe to be true and real, it doesn’t seem to be so far-fetched.
We believe as the Bible states, that a good many people died and came back to life. Those who Jesus and His disciples raised and those who came out of the graves at Jesus’ resurrection. We believe that our Savior, Jesus Christ Himself died and was raised again. And He is the prototype for us all. We believe that the Apostles, Paul and John, both went there without dying and wrote about their experiences. The book of Hebrews says that we are surrounded by those faithful ones who have died before us. We believe as Jesus said, that the Kingdom of God dwells in us. I believe that this kingdom is heaven or at the very least, the beginning of it. We also believe as the Apostle Paul expressed, “to be absent from the body is to be present with God”. So, if heaven is so close and we are all surrounded by it as an island is surrounded by water, is it so hard to believe that a few of us have dipped our toe in it and have lived to tell the story?
This week, we will take a dip in heaven or at least in what God tells us about it. What should our response be to this amazing news of “life forever”?
Jesus invites everyone to the banquet. He says “Go out to the back roads and compel them to come in so that My house may be full.”