Many are under the impression that they will be rewarded with eternal life conditions in heaven. Some, under the pressure of risking eternal condemnation, devout most of their entire lives submitting themselves to the authority of their religious institution under the most impoverished conditions hoping that the end result will be greater than the one that they’ve suffered in this life. Yet, if these who have suffered so much were informed about what the Scriptures say about heaven, they’d possibly make better life choices for themselves and their family. Others see the falsehood in these religious leaders or such associations and simply disregard the truth that can be found within the Word. Still, it becomes important to mention what the Scriptures have to say about heaven, the biblical view that Israel’s Patriarchs had towards heaven and how its difference from idolatrous notions.
Before going any further as to what the Scriptures say, this study would like to first mention a bit about the methodology because our finds are unorthodox in comparison to what many believe.
With the use of an online Strong’s Concordance, three separate Bible enthusiasts inserted the words “heaven”and “heavens” into a database of bible verses which resulted in providing with the same pertaining to heaven. Then, all of these verses were copied an pasted onto a sheet and printed for further reference, each verse being carefully analyzed and organized in a manner that made sense and sometimes entire chapters. Bible enthusiasts look forward to see if they would come up with the scriptural information needed to support a heavenly hope only to discover otherwise. As a result, this study was compiled for your spiritual nourishment. We also encourage our readers to do their own personal biblical research on the matter and see what results they come up with.
Mind you, this study is not about our own personal thoughts on the matter; it’s simply the result of long extensive biblical research.
The two main ideas that the Bible details for us about heaven is that it is the place where the Heavenly Father’s throne resides in as well as the source from whence He exercises His sovereign authority.
Many biblical figures have understood that heaven is the place where the Heavenly Father has established his throne, a well understood concept since the very creation of the universe which transversed through an extended period of time throughout many generations of biblical history (reference Ecclesiastes 5:2 & Isaiah 40:21-3). For instance, the Psalmist said, “Hashem is in His holy temple; Hashem's throne is in heaven; [...]. (Psalms 11:4).
Bible enthusiasts resolve in understanding quite simple that heaven is also the place from whence He exercises His Sovereignty over the works His hands have made. Consider momentarily what King David wrote, “I lift up my eyes to you who are enthroned in heaven” (Psalms 123:1, New Jerusalem with Apocrypha). In like manner, Daniel referred to The Heavenly Father as the G-d in heaven who reveals mysteries (reference Daniel 2:28). Isaiah, one of Israel’s prophets, expressed these very same thought.
1 Thus says Hashem: ‘Heaven is My throne and the earth is my footstool; what is the house which you would build for Me, and what is the place of My rest (i.e., Shabbat)? 2 All these things My hand has made, and so all these things are Mine,’ says Hashem.‘But this is the man to whom I will look, he that is humble and contrite in spirit, and trembles at My Word’ (Isaiah 66:1-2).
According to Scriptures, whenever a person gazes into the night sky and observe the stars contained within the firmament, he’s usually mindful of all the works The Heavenly Father’s hand have made. Such a magnificent wonder has inspired many to write poems, songs and stories about the creation universe. During periods of great distress, these would look up to the heavens and search for a long awaited hope of salvation from the ridicule and persecution.
2 Why should the nations say, ‘Where is their Elohim?’ 3 Our Elohim is in the heavens; He does whatever He pleases. (Psalms 115:2-3). Agreeably, Daniel came to realize this when he penned, “The
Most High Elohim rules the kingdom of men, and sets over it whom He will” (Daniel 5:21). Therefore, instead of limiting heaven as the place where the Heavenly Father has established His throne, it is oftentimes viewed as the place by whence He exercises His sovereign authority.
A Constant Reminder
Heaven serves Israel two purposeful function.
Firstly, it reminds the Israeli people of the covenantal promises that the Heavenly Father has made with Patriarchs. For instance, the Heavenly Father said: “5 [...], ‘Look toward heaven, and number the stars, if you are able to number them.’ Then He said to Abram, ‘So shall your descendants be.’ 6 And Abram believed Hashem; and Hashem reckoned it to Abram as righteousness” (Genesis 15:5-6). This promise has been repeated throughout Scriptures and viewed as a blessing upon all of Abraham’s descendants (reference Genesis 22:15-8). The Heavenly Father also reminded Abraham’s son, Isaac, of the promises contained within this contractual agreement(reference Genesis 26:3-5). It was this blessing that Isaac blessed Jacob with (reference Genesis 27:28-9). Afterwards, Jacob blessed his children with The Blessings of Heaven, which referred to Israel’s multiplicity upon the face of the earth (reference Genesis 49:22-6). Thus, when we look at the night sky, we are ever mindful of the fact that the Heavenly Father will not go back on His promises He made with our ancestors.
Secondly, the heavens played a major part in determining the commanded feast days for sacred assemblage and holy convocations. In fact, Israel’s priesthood was able to determine the Mo’adim (i.e., The Appointed Times & Seasons) in meeting with the Heavenly Father and identify the proper Sabbaths by observing the motions of the night skys. By obeying Torah’s commandments along with its Mo’adim, Israeli people was able to distinguish themselves from the rest of the nations of the earth (reference Genesis 1:14-5, Exodus 32:13, Deuteronomy 1:9-10).
With much faith, the international body of Messiah believes in the Scriptures when it declares that The Heavenly Father created the heavens (reference Genesis 1:1, 2:1, 4, 14:19, 22). Israel is ever mindful of such a wonderful creative act, because the Mo’adim (i.e., Appointed Times & Seasons) is embedded within the very fabric of their existence as a people, cultural practice and speech. Thus, Torah commands Israel, “[...] beware lest you lift up your eyes to heaven, and when you see the sun and the moon and the stars, all the host of heaven, you be drawn away and worship them and serve them, things which Hashem your Elohim has allotted to all the peoples under the whole heaven” (Deuteronomy 4:19). As a result, we learn the purposeful function wherewith the heavens serve mankind.
Let's now conclude with some final thoughts.
This study discussed how the international body of Messiah perceived heaven. Heaven is believed to be the place where the Heavenly Father established His throne and the place from whence the Heavenly Father exercises His sovereign authority over the nations of the earth. Secondly, the heavens serves us as a constant reminder that the Heavenly Father made with our ancestors, his continuous blessing over the people of Israel as we continue to cleave to the Heavenly Father's commandments as embodied within Torah.
© 2014 by Nehr HaOlam Publications.
Winslow, New Jersey, USA
All Rights Reserved.
Unless otherwise indicated, all Scriptures were taken from the New Living Translation of the Bible.
For more information, contact NehrHaOlam@gmail.com.
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