When many people think of heaven, their minds are filled with images of golden harps, clouds, and angels. Heaven is pie in the sky when you die, and for many savvy people, that sounds completely uninteresting. Christian worship on earth seems boring enough. So why would anybody want to sit through a worship service that goes on forever?!
Christianity teaches that the purpose of life is to go to heaven when you die.
Heaven is a static experience floating on clouds with harps and angels.
Nothing exciting happens in heaven; this world is far more interesting.
If church is boring and it only lasts 2 hours, doing it 24-7 in heaven will be intolerable.
The purpose of life is not to go to heaven. The purpose of life is to be in relationship with God, to bear his image, and to partner with him in restoring and wisely ruling the world.
Heaven will come down to earth. Heaven will be a physical and earthy reality. More earthy than earth…or earth, as earth was always supposed to be.
We will have jobs to do, beauty to create, things to learn, and people to love and serve.
Revelation tells us that every nation, tribe, and tongue will be in Heaven. In other words, culture will be preserved: art, music, language, song, dance, technology, good food, and yes...good wine...the best of this will be in Heaven.
Nothing good will be lost and all the best of this world will be preserved and even improved on.
Heaven will be the best of earth without the sin, evil, sorrow, and pain. These will be redeemed.
Jesus’ favorite image for Heaven is a wedding reception party (and perhaps the wedding and honeymoon itself). It will be full of celebration. Dancing. There will be really good wine there and no hangovers or drunk driving. And God and humanity will be united in a way that can only be likened to the uniting of a bride and groom. There is almost nothing boring about a great wedding, a great wedding reception, or a great honeymoon!
As such, heaven will be far more interesting than earth.
Take a minute and think of a time when you have felt the most satisfied and fulfilled in your life. A time when you belonged the most of felt the most deeply known and loved. That is a taste of heaven.
Heaven will be like a mysterious garden, where there is always more to explore and discover, and the beauty takes our breath away.
In many ways earth and heaven are not actually that far apart...the biggest thing that changes is us. We must be changed and glorified and healed in order to experience and enjoy heaven. And the only way that can happen is in relationship with Jesus.
It is Jesus who makes heaven heavenly. At the center of Heaven is Jesus. It is Jesus, his love, his leadership, his relationship with us that heals us and makes us able to bear the weight of reality and glory that Heaven is.
It isn’t an endless boring worship service, it is a never-ending adventure with Jesus. An adventure that can begin right now and never has to end.