God’s Promise and Heaven

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The old year is gone, and a new year has begun. Looking back at the past, I feel like I have woken from a single night of sleep; all my days have passed by so quickly. This reminds me that the day when we will go to Heaven is drawing nearer. We must be so thankful that we have the Kingdom of Heaven.

When Jesus came to this earth 2,000 years ago, He taught that Heaven and Hell really exist and told us to follow the path He had opened for us, so we could all go to Heaven. Then He set us an example of putting into practice all the teachings of truth during His life on earth. We, members of the heavenly family, must follow His path, so we can all enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Let’s examine the value of life God has taught us, through the Bible.

Efforts that are not in vain

The human life span is so short. Many heroes and people of wealth and power seem to rule over the whole world forever, but as time passes, there comes a time when they have to put down everything and wrap it up.

Alexander the Great, who dreamed of conquering the world, died of a fever on an expedition at the young age of 33. Before his death, he said, “Let both my hands be kept hanging out of my coffin.” Historians says he did so to show people that he left the world empty handed, although he had established a vast empire that stretched from Greece to India.

Solomon, known as the king of wisdom, also enjoyed the greatest wealth and honor that the world had ever known. However, from chapter 1 through 12 of the book of Ecclesiastes which he wrote at the end of his life, he constantly says that life is meaningless.

The words of the Teacher, son of David, king in Jerusalem: “Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the Teacher. “Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless.” What does man gain from all his labor at which he toils under the sun? Ecc 1:1–3

“Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the Teacher. “Everything is meaningless!” . . . Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man. For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil. Ecc 12:8–14

Solomon understood the way of the world and repeatedly emphasized, “Everything is meaningless.” Why has God given us these words through Solomon? It’s not because God wants us to have a pessimistic and negative view of life, but because He wants us to think about what kind of life is truly valuable.

At the end of Ecclesiastes, Solomon says there is only one thing that is not in vain and advises us to make efforts to do it. His advice is to fear God and keep His commandments. It’s because only those who live according to God’s teachings can escape judgment and enter the eternal Kingdom of Heaven.

Unless we seek God and set our life goals and direction toward Heaven, all the things we do are meaningless, a chasing after the wind, no matter how hard we try to accomplish them. When we work hard for eternal things, then our efforts will not be in vain. So Jesus always planted the hope of Heaven in the hearts of His disciples, even amidst hardship and persecution.

“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.” Jn 14:1–3

“My Father’s house” refers to the Kingdom of Heaven. Jesus says He is preparing a place for us in Heaven. The eternal Kingdom of Heaven is waiting for those who keep God’s commandments and revere God with upright faith.

However, as it is written: “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him” . . . 1 Co 2:9

The Kingdom of Heaven, which God has prepared for those who love Him, is such a beautiful world that no eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has conceived. When we follow Christ’s path to Heaven, our life is never in vain. No matter what hardships we go through, we must not give up on the Kingdom of Heaven but make every effort to enter it.

Heaven and Hell really exist

Many people today do not know about the spiritual world they are going. They live complacent lives, just focusing on what is right in front of them and not knowing whether they are proceeding toward Heaven or Hell. However, Heaven and Hell surely exist.

Jesus came to this earth to save mankind, and He taught many things about Heaven and Hell. He urged people to repent, telling them about the coming Kingdom of Heaven (Mt 4:17), and He said it would be better for us to lose one part of our body than for our whole body to be thrown into Hell (Mk 9:43–49). Through the parable of the rich man and Lazarus, Jesus taught us what kind of life would unfold for everyone in Heaven or in Hell.

“There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and lived in luxury every day. At his gate was laid a beggar named Lazarus, covered with sores and longing to eat what fell from the rich man’s table. Even the dogs came and licked his sores. The time came when the beggar died and the angels carried him to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried. In hell, where he was in torment, he looked up and saw Abraham far away, with Lazarus by his side. So he called to him, ‘Father Abraham, have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire.’ But Abraham replied, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony.’ ” Lk 16:19–25

The rich man lived in luxury and pleasure every day, but Lazarus lived in pain. After death, however, each of them started a new life. Lazarus was comforted in Heaven, being carried in God’s bosom, but the rich man was so tormented in the fire of Hell that he even begged God, “Send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue.”

Unlike Lazarus who had lived with a heart toward Heaven even in hardship, the rich man had only focused on accumulating wealth and he had no time to think about Heaven. As a result, he missed all the opportunities given to him. Being tormented with fire, he earnestly asked God to send Lazarus back to the earth to let his brothers know about the spiritual world so that they would not be sent to Hell. Then God said that they should follow Moses and the Prophets—the teachings of the Bible, so they could avoid the torment of Hell and go to Heaven (Lk 16:27–31).

And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever. Rev 20:10

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth . . . “. . . 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 . . . But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars—their place will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.” Rev 21:1–8

There is Hell where the unsaved are tormented in the fiery lake of burning sulfur forever, and there surely exists the Kingdom of Heaven where there is no death or mourning or pain. The Kingdom of Heaven we are going to is a place where there is eternal life, joy and happiness. There is no reason for refusing to go to such a wonderful world. Like Lazarus, we should all run toward Heaven, always being joyful, although we live a hard life on this earth.

The way to Heaven

If everyone is given a choice between Heaven or Hell, they will want to go to Heaven. So, we should point our faith in the right direction. If we just run blindly, we cannot reach the destination. Only when we walk the path of faith heavenward can we enter the eternal Kingdom of Heaven.

Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” Jn 14:6

For human beings who were wandering aimlessly without knowing the way to Heaven, Jesus came to this earth 2,000 years ago, and He became a guide leading us to Heaven. That’s why we should follow Christ’s teachings fully.

“Let him who does wrong continue to do wrong; let him who is vile continue to be vile; let him who does right continue to do right; and let him who is holy continue to be holy. Behold, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to everyone according to what he has done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End. Blessed are those who wash their robes, that they may have the right to the tree of life and may go through the gates into the city. Outside are the dogs, those who practice magic arts, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.” Rev 22:11–15

God says He will judge everyone according to what they have done (Rev 20:13). Every single day is an opportunity for us to prepare to go to Heaven. Some people exchange this opportunity with futile things in the world, while some try not to lose Heaven although it is difficult for them. Nothing in the world is worth doing if it requires us to give up on Heaven. Eternal reward or judgment depends on our faith and deeds. So, we have to treasure every moment and try our hardest to obey God’s will, until we enter the eternal Kingdom of Heaven.

. . . You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat. But in keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, the home of righteousness. So then, dear friends, since you are looking forward to this, make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with him. 2 Pe 3:11–14

Those who keep the new covenant will enter a new heaven and a new earth, according to God’s promise. Then, is it okay for us to do something evil because we have already received God’s promise? Absolutely not! As God’s children, we should live a more godly and upright life in the truth, as God is perfect.

Although we lived for this world, judging things by worldly standards, before we received the truth, we have to proceed toward Heaven from now on. Whoever wants to go to Heaven must repent. With gratitude for the grace of God, we must repent so that we can attain the Kingdom of Heaven.

The new covenant, God’s promise

When we look back over our lives, we come to realize that we have many weaknesses before God. The Bible says that there is no one righteous in God’s eyes, not even one (Ro 3:10). Without being cleansed from sin, no one can stand without blemish or defect before God. So God has given us the forgiveness of sins.

Look upon Zion, the city of our festivals; your eyes will see Jerusalem, a peaceful abode, a tent that will not be moved; its stakes will never be pulled up, nor any of its ropes broken. There the Lord will be our Mighty One . . . No one living in Zion will say, “I am ill”; and the sins of those who dwell there will be forgiven. Isa 33:20–24

God has promised to forgive the sins of the people who dwell in Zion, where the feasts of God are observed. The people in Zion have the promise that enables them to stand without blemish or defect before God and to enter the eternal Kingdom of Heaven.

While they were eating, Jesus took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take and eat; this is my body.” Then he took the cup, gave thanks and offered it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.” Mt 26:26–28

Only God has the power to forgive sins (Mk 2:7; Lk 5:20–21). To forgive all the sins of mankind, Jesus came to this earth as the Savior in the age of the Son. He established Zion, the place of God’s appointed feasts, and opened the way to Heaven, so that whoever kept the New Covenant Passover could receive the forgiveness of sins.

In this age of the Holy Spirit, the Spirit and the Bride have restored the truth of the new covenant and lead us, Their children, to the way to the forgiveness of sins and the eternal Kingdom of Heaven (Rev 22:17). We must follow the way, so we can enter Heaven.

Prepare for the spiritual world

The moment physical life ends is the starting point of eternal life. For His beloved children, God has prepared the Kingdom of Heaven where they can get whatever they want and can have eternal life and happiness.

Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb down the middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him. They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign for ever and ever. Rev 22:1–5

There is a saying that goes, “Human beings come empty handed and leave empty handed.” Everyone came empty handed when they were born on earth. However, when God’s children go back to their heavenly home after finishing their life’s journey on earth, they will return with an armful of gifts—God’s blessings, love and promises. The glorious world God has prepared for us and the glory and blessing of reigning there forever are waiting for us.

Now is the time to prepare for the Kingdom of Heaven. What if people fail to realize this and conclude their earthly lives, not even knowing God or the Kingdom of Heaven? They will end up so miserable. That’s why God has made this fact known to us first and told us to teach it to those who do not know it yet. Let us tell all people that Heaven exists and that only the children of promise, who abide in the truth of the new covenant, can go there.

We dwell in Zion, and we have the hope for Heaven, and Heavenly Father and Mother are with us, leading us to Heaven. There can be no greater joy than this, right? We have God’s definite promise in our lives. I earnestly ask all of you, our Zion family members, to fear God and keep God’s commandments, following the path of Christ, so you can all enter the everlasting Kingdom of Heaven. Eternal thanks and glory be to Elohim for giving us this gracious and beautiful hope!