THE GLORIOUS HEAVENLY HOPE
Practically every religion on earth teaches that after death, mankind will live again in the heavens. Even those who believe in reincarnation expect that, eventually, they will receive a heavenly existence. But in our little nation of Jehovah’s Witnesses, the heavenly hope is only pursued by a very small number. Not because we lack faith in God. Not because we lack faith in Christ. And certainly not because we are unwilling to live approved lives. We find ourselves in this predicament because of overmuch humility and a misunderstanding of a few scriptures. But brothers, take care! We are ‘worth more than many sparrows,’ even in our sincere ignorance. (Matthew 10:29-31)
In other articles on this site, especially under the section “Building Up the Brotherhood,” we establish that all of us who seek to follow the Christ have the heavenly hope. Yet we understand how difficult it is for some to really lay claim to that hope since many cannot imagine heavenly life. They have no real frame of reference to be able to formulate such contemplations.
For example, when we plan to vacation at a place we have never been, we obtain travel brochures, tourist information, and whatever else we can get our hands on to tell us about the location. When we review this information, our imagination is stimulated at all the things we could do. It whets our appetite, piques our interest, and fuels our anticipation for the visit. As such, in this series, we hope to provide information that can serve as a sort of ‘travel brochure’ that will offer glimpses of heavenly life as indicated in the Bible.
We know that Christ, who descended from the heavens and manifested as Jesus of Nazareth, was able to tell us some things about the heavenly inheritance. And his apostles and disciples were given glimpses of the heavenly hope in their personal association with Jesus. And even before Christ, the inspired writers of the Hebrew Scriptures occasionally penned phrases that shed light on our future home. We will consider all these source of information as we draw a picture of “The Glorious Heavenly Hope.”