Forums » General Discussion

When does one go to heaven ?

    • 2 posts
    August 16, 2015 11:48 AM EDT

    This question came up in my mind from today's Scripture reading 8/16/15 When Jesus said to the thief on the cross

    "TODAY you will be with me in Paradise "  By this one verse it seems imediately, but other verses hint at after the second coming of Christ, ie.

    "The dead in Christ shall rise first "  I heard a convincing sermon on this that basically said that one is in God's memory until He returns and then

    "the chosen" will be with Him .

    I 've heard many different answers to this question and most are reasonable .   I wonder what actually is the truth.

    • Moderator
    • 129 posts
    August 16, 2015 1:58 PM EDT

    Like you, I have heard many convincing sermons that can lead you in all sorts of ways. And in the end, it is not something that matters one way or another outside of our own curiosity.

    Personally I like to believe that when out of the body, we are present with the Lord. Call it comforting.

    I always yield to the words of Jesus in the gospels. He told the thief that "Today you will be with Me in paradise" (Luke 23:43).That is YOU, ME, PARADISE, TODAY.

    Paul wrote: “Being therefore always of good courage, and knowing that, while we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord; for we walk by faith, not by sight. We are of good courage, I say, and are willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be at home with the Lord.” (2 Corinthians 5:6–8 WEB)

    In the body = Away from the Lord.
    Out of the body = Home with the Lord.

    Also Jesus will bring some back with Him when He returns: “For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so those who have fallen asleep in Jesus will God bring with him.” (1 Thessalonians 4:14 WEB)

    I used to read and study all about the end times, the advent, the resurrection of the dead, the rapture - pre-trib, mid-trib, post-trib, the millennium and would have heated debates about the details. Finally the Lord told me "Son, don't be so concerned about the end of the Book. Go back to the beginning, and take another look. You don't need all of the things to fit. Just allow your purpose and Mine to knit."

    I saw that my theology had became a jumbled mess and I threw it all out and started over. Now I don't know, nor care to know that much about the end times. Keep it simple. Some teach the rapture, others don't, I don't really care. What does it matter when we are one heartbeat from meeting Jesus in person today.

    I just try to allow my purpose and His to knit. :)

    • 56 posts
    August 16, 2015 2:23 PM EDT

    I think all of these questions, keep us focus on things that are not suppose to be our focus. I could rant on, but I will not! If you love me, you will keep my commandments. Simple.

  • August 17, 2015 3:50 PM EDT

    Jesus answered him, 'I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise.'"

    Luke 23:43 means that God has a place where He keeps the spirits of the forgiven dead until Jesus returns and clothes them in new bodies; that Jesus secures life after death for all believers. He called that place Paradise - a Persian word meaning garden. It's used in 2 Corinthians 12:4 and Revelation 2:7, where it's synonymous with Heaven. Paradise is equivalent to Abraham's bosom (Luke 16:23), and to Eden in Genesis 2:8, which means delight. Jesus rules over Paradise, and keeps the righteous dead at rest in His Presence, fully conscious, absolutely beatific, and perfectly secure. By opening Paradise to believers, He proved that righteousness has its reward in peace with God, whatever happens in this life.

     

    i would like to mention this,i believe when the bible was first written there were no comas,periods, etc,so i am thinking this    if the coma was removed from after truth  and placed after today,then you would have a different meaning?

    • 2 posts
    December 25, 2015 1:09 PM EST

    Interesting question Richard. I had to look up the verse in the King James version. To me, it makes more sense that Jesus meant 'today you will be with me' rather than 'today I tell you'. I cannot recall a passage where Jesus says 'today I am telling you', or anything similar, but I could be wrong. This is just my opinion.

     

    "And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, today thou shalt be with me in paradise" Luke 23:43 KJV

    I love these discussions :)

    • 67 posts
    February 23, 2016 10:04 PM EST

    I see a lot of posts on facebook declaring that " I will go to Heaven". Those posts make me uneasy. I may be wrong, but I think that the decision of who enters Heaven or not is God's choice and His alone. Man cannot make that assumption because it's not his to make. I honestly do not know who is "worthy" (for lack of a better word) or not, and I believe that all of us have the chance for redemption and an opportunity to be forgiven. I do not know what the end times hold, and I think that I am not supposed to worry or fret about it. Just trust in the Lord and let what happens happen. If the Lord wants you to do something, I think He will let you know. But for the most part, what people have to do is trust Him and have faith that the Lord will take care of everything. I may be wrong, please correct me if I am, but I think the message is this "Relax. God has this handled, trust Him." 

    • 272 posts
    February 25, 2016 10:03 AM EST

    Agreed, Tyler :). I believe we just have to do the best we can, and let Him correct us if we get it wrong :). I see what you are saying about the posts, that it could easily be seen as something a person takes for granted, or worse, even something that God "has" to do. I tend to think that is probably not what they mean (though we do know some who act like that), but are probably expressing gratitude. Who knows, though, I don't know them all well ;-). In case you haven't seen it, Dion posted a pretty lengthy teaching on salvation here.

     

    [blockquote]Tyler Velau said:

    I see a lot of posts on facebook declaring that " I will go to Heaven". Those posts make me uneasy. I may be wrong, but I think that the decision of who enters Heaven or not is God's choice and His alone. Man cannot make that assumption because it's not his to make. I honestly do not know who is "worthy" (for lack of a better word) or not, and I believe that all of us have the chance for redemption and an opportunity to be forgiven. I do not know what the end times hold, and I think that I am not supposed to worry or fret about it. Just trust in the Lord and let what happens happen. If the Lord wants you to do something, I think He will let you know. But for the most part, what people have to do is trust Him and have faith that the Lord will take care of everything. I may be wrong, please correct me if I am, but I think the message is this "Relax. God has this handled, trust Him." 

    [/blockquote]

    • 1 posts
    February 25, 2016 12:35 PM EST
    My son was murdered on Saturday by an acquaintance, someone he trusted. Psalm 55 speaks of this death. He is in heaven. God would not put the steps in order on our journey to heaven if it weren't so. When the Bible says the dead in Christ shall rise first, I believe that is because they are alive with Christ on another plane. Could you imagine bones coming up out of the ground or ashes regenerating? No. They are with Christ and they will be joining Christ to fight the war against the devil and his minions. I am so sore pained right now, but knowing my son is in heaven walking with The King brings hope to my heart. God bless.
    • 67 posts
    February 25, 2016 12:54 PM EST

    I am so sorry for your loss, Valisa, words are not enough to express what you and your family must  be going through. I have lost family members and people I loved deeply so I know to some extent the pain of which grips you now. And I can tell you that it doesn't go away, and I don't think it  should, but, over time, it becomes more managable. Don't look on it as a burden, look on it as your son being in a better place, with Jesus there to watch over him. May you and your family find peace and solace over the events that have taken place and may the Lord grant you comfort and mercy during the times ahead. God Bless :)

    • 272 posts
    February 25, 2016 1:16 PM EST

    Valisa, I am so very sorry for your loss <3. Years ago, there was a woman I considered a second mother who was murdered, also by someone who was supposed to be a friend. I know that is not the same as losing a child, but I remember well the shock of it. I pray that He continues to stay close to you and keep you filled with His strength and hope, especially in the days to come, when things get quieter. 

     

    Love and hugs,

    Sylvia

     

    [blockquote]Valisa Joy said: My son was murdered on Saturday by an acquaintance, someone he trusted. Psalm 55 speaks of this death. He is in heaven. God would not put the steps in order on our journey to heaven if it weren't so. When the Bible says the dead in Christ shall rise first, I believe that is because they are alive with Christ on another plane. Could you imagine bones coming up out of the ground or ashes regenerating? No. They are with Christ and they will be joining Christ to fight the war against the devil and his minions. I am so sore pained right now, but knowing my son is in heaven walking with The King brings hope to my heart. God bless. [/blockquote]

    • 8 posts
    March 22, 2016 10:31 PM EDT

    [blockquote]Jay Jerisek said:

    This question came up in my mind from today's Scripture reading 8/16/15 When Jesus said to the thief on the cross

    "TODAY you will be with me in Paradise "  By this one verse it seems imediately, but other verses hint at after the second coming of Christ, ie.

    "The dead in Christ shall rise first "  I heard a convincing sermon on this that basically said that one is in God's memory until He returns and then

    "the chosen" will be with Him .

    I 've heard many different answers to this question and most are reasonable .   I wonder what actually is the truth.

    [/blockquote]

    • 8 posts
    March 22, 2016 10:49 PM EDT

    This is a great question! Recently, at my workplace, this converstation began with a co-worker who was struggling with the recent death of her brother. She had just started going to church again and was in a state of confusion and grief with the idea that her brother and mother were not "actually in heaven" yet. We all have peace knowing a loved one, friend, etc. are reunited with someone they know and love. Overall, most scripture that I have read, simply put, leads myself to think that after passing here on earth we (our souls) are in the presence of the Lord-The dead in Christ shall rise. "Dead in Christ" is the focus for this thought. I think we will be aware of this presence, as well. Later, we will proceed to "shall rise" when the reign/return will then begin. Any discussion is worthy, as either way the ultimate reward is Heaven, whether longer or immediate! :)