When we consider all the potential topics for religious or theocratic conversation, none is more important that the destiny of mankind. No matter what rituals one performs or how much knowledge of facts and theories one takes in, what we all want to know is how can we achieve eternal life. And of all of man’s endeavors, only a belief in God opens the door to the real possibility of living forever.
Accordingly, this ministry has focused on reviving the authentic, actual, original, plain and open teachings of Jesus, specifically that mankind can enter the Kingdom of the Heavens as sons of the most powerful personality in the Universe, and experience joys unimaginable for an eternity. Nowhere is this knowledge more needed than in the congregations of Jehovah’s Witnesses whose Governing Body teaches that of the billions who have ever lived, and will live, only 144,000 humans will ever leave the planet to enjoy the heavens. The remaining billions, who they claim must survive two devastating global ‘armageddons,’ will be marooned on the planet for an eternity, like well-cared for pets. They will never have the joy of working with the glorified Christ Jesus or standing in the presence of the ineffable Father or experiencing all of the Father’s creation.
For this reason, we have devoted a significant portion of this ministry to debunking the death-dealing fallacy of the individual living forever on earth, and highlighting the glorious heavenly career. Practically every article on our site touches on this most important point, and many specifically address it, such as:
The Cherished Earthly Hope
The Promised Resurrection
Proving Ourselves Worthy of Christ
What is the Good News?
What is God’s Purpose for the Earth?
Who Are Led by Spirit?
Moving Forward in Faith
Holding Fast to the Sacred Secret
We have published many, many responses to questions about the ‘two-hope’ theory of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Questions and Responses. Most recently, we published a Question and Response 1/22/14 that addressed the topic again. Notwithstanding all of this information, on January 24, 2014, we received this email anonymously:
“Appreciated your response to current question on Matt.5:5 [Question and Response 1/22/14] but how is Psalms 37:29 to be understood when it reads that "The righteous themselves will possess the earth, And they will reside FOREVER upon it." What does the FOREVER mean? Are there going to be some who will be happy living eternally on earth? This may seem a little confusing to some as to where we are all destined and for how long. Thank you.”
At first, we were surprised at the question seeing that we have commented so many times on this subject. Even in the Question and Response 1/22/14, we stated:
“In other words, one day in the future, the majority of the residents on earth will be meek. But it does not mean that the meek will never go to heaven, as the articles you refer to explain, The Cherished Earthly Hope and The Glorious Heavenly Hope. For starters, take another look at The Real Hope for Life on Earth. The time will come when the meek ones will complete their time on earth and begin the heavenly ascent, leaving the earth to the next generation of meek ones.”
But we assume we have not been clear enough. Therefore, we are addressing the subject again, as thoroughly as we can, so that our brothers and sisters among Jehovah’s Witnesses can get past this ‘red herring’ of a hope and get on with the real life.
First, we want to make clear that the promises of the Hebrew prophets about a peaceful earth will be fulfilled. Today, our earth is not filled with righteous people, but as the plain and open teachings of Jesus spread across the earth, people will change.
They will learn to be peaceful and peaceable:
“They will beat their swords into plowshares, And their spears into pruning shears. Nation will not lift up sword against nation, Nor will they learn war anymore.”
– Isaiah 2:4
The resources they directed to war will then be directed to improving the environment:
“The wilderness and the parched land will exult, And the desert plain will be joyful and blossom as the saffron. Without fail it will blossom; It will rejoice and shout for joy. The glory of Lebanon will be given to it, The splendor of Carmel and of Sharon. They will see the glory of Jehovah, the splendor of our God.”
– Isaiah 35:1-2
These newly available resources will also be directed to agricultural and medical advances:
“At that time the eyes of the blind will be opened, And the ears of the deaf will be unstopped. At that time the lame will leap like the deer, And the tongue of the speechless will shout for joy. For waters will burst forth in the wilderness, And streams in the desert plain. The heat-parched ground will become a reedy pool, And the thirsty ground springs of water. In the lairs where jackals rested, There will be green grass and reeds and papyrus.”
– Isaiah 35:3-7
“And no resident will say: “I am sick.” The people dwelling in the land will be pardoned for their error.”
– Isaiah 33:24
As a result, poverty, unemployment and hunger will be eradicated:
“The earth will give its produce; God, our God, will bless us.”
– Psalms 67:6
“There will be an abundance of grain on the earth; On the top of the mountains it will overflow. His fruit will flourish as in Lebanon, And in the cities people will blossom like the vegetation of the earth.”
– Psalm 72:16
“They will build houses and live in them, And they will plant vineyards and eat their fruitage. They will not build for someone else to inhabit, Nor will they plant for others to eat. For the days of my people will be like the days of a tree, And the work of their hands my chosen ones will enjoy to the full. They will not toil for nothing, Nor will they bear children for distress, Because they are the offspring made up of those blessed by Jehovah, And their descendants with them.”
– Isaiah 65:21-23
And in time, the earth will be filled with righteous people who have no economic, social or psychological need to harm others. But this will come about, ‘not by military might, but by the spirit of the Father’ (Zechariah 4:6) manifested in those who have headed the saving message. This is a goal we can work toward now – helping people ‘learn war no more’ rather than remaining silent and giving the earth to those who are ruining it. The earth will then be in the hands of ‘meek’ people, righteous people, godly people. Every generation thereafter will inherit these paradise-like conditions, and these conditions will continue FOREVER. From that time forward, only righteous people will possess the earth.
But as for the individual human being, God has a greater destiny for him. Man is not a pet who just wants to be comfortable and well fed. Man is made in God’s image. That means man is the offspring of the most incredible personality in the universe! Man is an intelligent, thinking, planning, dynamic, creative visionary. He will not be content with living a peaceful existence, marooned on earth like domesticated animals. He will want more. It is ingrained in him. God put it into man’s heart to want to know EVERYTHING! The things on earth and the things in the heavens:
“He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has even put eternity in their heart; yet mankind will never find out the work that the true God has made from start to finish.”
– Ecclesiastes 3:11
It is, and always has been, God’s purpose to adopt man as his spirit sons in the heavens. (Ephesians 1:3-5) This is the sacred secret of the ages that Jesus of Nazareth revealed! (Matthew 13:11) And since God is ‘opening His hand and satisfying the desire of every living thing’ (Psalms 145:16), we most certainly will have the opportunity to know EVERYTHING! That means that, at some point in time, each one of us who wants it will venture off this tiny planet and enter into the heavens for an exciting eternal career!
Due to the nature of earthling man – being made of flesh and blood – we have to abandon these bodies in order to enter the heavens. Even if we had the mechanical means to travel into space, our bodies could not endure the journey. The heavens are so vast and so grand that our bodies would wear out and expire before we reach the closest system that could sustain our fleshly bodies. There are currently only two methods for making this transition – (1) by death and resurrection; or (2) by being instantly transformed from corruptible bodies, that naturally decay, to incorruptible ones. As mankind grows in spiritual awareness and God consciousness through the ministry of Christ Jesus, the first method will eventually be done away with, as Paul wrote:
“But I tell you this, brothers, that flesh and blood cannot inherit God’s Kingdom, nor does corruption inherit incorruption. Look! I tell you a sacred secret: We will not all fall asleep in death, but we will all be changed, in a moment, in the blink of an eye, during the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised up incorruptible, and we will be changed. For this which is corruptible must put on incorruption, and this which is mortal must put on immortality. But when this which is corruptible puts on incorruption and this which is mortal puts on immortality, then the saying that is written will take place: “Death is swallowed up forever.” “Death, where is your victory? Death, where is your sting?” The sting producing death is sin, and the power for sin is the Law. But thanks to God, for he gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ!”
– 1 Corinthians 15:50-57
Everyone who is clinging to the idea that flesh and blood can live forever is mistaken. Paul wrote that flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom. Notice his words to the Romans:
“For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the spirit, on the things of the spirit. For setting the mind on the flesh means death, but setting the mind on the spirit means life and peace; because setting the mind on the flesh means enmity with God, for it is not in subjection to the law of God, nor, in fact, can it be. So those who are in harmony with the flesh cannot please God.”
– Romans 8:5-8
Paul is talking about the inherent nature of existing in fleshly bodies. He goes on:
“So, then, brothers, we are under obligation, not to the flesh to live according to the flesh; for if you live according to the flesh, you are sure to die; but if you put the practices of the body to death by the spirit, you will live.”
– Romans 8:12-13
Truly, there is no eternal life outside of sonship with God, in pursuit of the heavens. This is the grand purpose of a great, wise and farseeing God. God is not a God-in-Training who was baffled and foiled by the Devil’s machinations. These matters had to unfold over generations. (See Bringing Heaven Down – An Historic Overview.) And when the appointed time arrived, when mankind was properly prepared for knowing about this fascinating heavenly career (Galatians 3:24-25), Jesus appeared and revealed this sacred secret.
“But when the full limit of the time arrived, God sent his Son, who was born of a woman and who was under law, that he might release by purchase those under law, so that we might receive the adoption as sons. Now because you are sons, God has sent the spirit of his Son into our hearts, and it cries out: “Abba, Father!” So you are no longer a slave but a son; and if a son, then you are also an heir through God.”
– Galatians 4:4-7
Think about it. What was ‘new’ about Jesus message? In what way did it differ from the Jewish religious message such that its members had to be expelled from the synagogues for teaching or believing it? What was so revolutionary that men and women gladly gave up their fleshly lives for it? If Jesus was only bringing the heavenly hope to 144,000, why did millions have to die sacrificial and torturous deaths? (See The Great Crowd of Partakers which shows that the “Doctrine of 144,000" is a blatant misreading of scripture.) And if the majority of his followers were not to follow him into the heavens, wouldn’t Jesus have told us?
“In the house of my Father are many dwelling places. Otherwise, I would have told you, for I am going my way to prepare a place for you.”
– John 14:2
Though milleniums passed before Jesus revealed this destiny, all those who have ever lived and died will be resurrected with an opportunity to begin the heavenly ascent. (See The Promised Resurrection.)
Jesus plainly stated to the Pharisee Nicodemus that one needs to be born of spirit in order to have any part in the Kingdom of God:
“In response Jesus said to him: ‘Most truly I say to you, unless anyone is born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God.’ Nicodemus said to him: ‘How can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter into the womb of his mother a second time and be born, can he?’ Jesus answered: ‘Most truly I say to you, unless anyone is born from water and spirit, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God. ”
– John 3:3-5
And he gave us a guarantee of our heavenly career:
“But the one who guarantees that you and we belong to Christ and the one who anointed us is God. He has also put his seal on us and has given us the token of what is to come, that is, the spirit, in our hearts.”
– 2 Corinthians 1:21-22
“But you also hoped in him after you heard the word of truth, the good news about your salvation. After you believed, you were sealed by means of him with the promised holy spirit, which is a token in advance of our inheritance, for the purpose of releasing God’s own possession by a ransom, to his glorious praise.”
– Ephesians 1:13-14
There is no promise or guarantee associated with everlasting life on earth, only prophetic speculation. This is why we find it so odd that so many God-oriented men and women who associate with the Watchtower Society would reject this marvelous adventure in favor of living as a domesticated animal. As Paul wrote, the sons of God cry out “Abba Father!” and do their utmost to help our brothers find their way to this same joy!
So now, brothers, what more must we say? The only hope for personality survival is by means of sonship with God and being adopted into the heavens. The options are: (1) everlasting life in the heavens; or (2) death on earth. Not a tough choice at all! Practically every translation, and every version of the Bible explains this! Yet nearly 6 million people reject this plain and open teaching and continue to cling to their flesh and to the errors of the teachings of men. If they are to live, they must break away from those mundane ideas of their blind guides . . .
“in order that with all the holy ones you may be thoroughly able to comprehend fully what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of the Christ, which surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with all the fullness that God gives.”
– Ephesians 3:18-19
We are distressed at how difficult this understanding is, but we will not give up. The Father “does not desire anyone to be destroyed but desires all to attain to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9) And so do we.
However, to all of our brothers who continue to have questions on this most important issue of salvation: If you really cannot see this truth of the one hope for all mankind after all that we have published on this site, then at least remain open to the possibilities the Father may have for you. Stay ready to serve Him where HE sees fit. Do not close your hearts and shut the door to the Kingdom of the Heavens for yourself.
And in line with our continued efforts to uplift the spiritual conversation, we welcome your comments so that we can put this gross error to rest.