At first, I couldn’t understand what was happening. I found myself spinning out of control. It seemed like I was caught in this giant vortex — spinning, spinning, spinning. The earth lay behind me as I spiralled upward, spinning ever more. A hand — yes, a hand — was firmly grasped to mine, locked on tight. It was inconceivable to even think that I could somehow escape the grasp of it. There was a security in this hand; there was an authority behind it. I was powerless to even utter a suggestion as to what to do. “Trust” was the only word I could think of, as we went together, upwards, spinning. I knew that I was being taken somewhere. And then, suddenly, I knew that … my time had come!
I had lived my life. Now it was time for me to go on to the next. I knew Jesus as my Savior. Heaven was my reward. There, I would meet relatives, and literally billions of others, that had gone before me — these, too, had trusted in Christ as their Savior. This was a happy crowd, to be sure!
I was excited. I was also content. I had done my best to serve the Lord while I was on the earth. I had given my “all”. There was no one that I held a grudge against, no “unfinished business” to take care of. I had repented of all known sins, and had done the best I could to serve the Lord while I was on the earth.
Suddenly, we were there, and I found myself at heaven’s gate. The angel who had been accompanying me left without saying a word.
“Dearest John,” a voice exclaimed. “Welcome!”
“Who are you?” I said.
“I am your uncle Bob, on your mother’s side. I have been praying for you, and I am sooooo happy to see you here! Welcome! Welcome! Welllllllllllllllllcome to heaven’s gate! I am the privileged one, today, to be able to greet you! It could have been anyone, really, but the Lord — for purposes which only he knows — decided to send me to greet you! Hope you had a nice trip!”
“I’ll say!” I responded. “That was sooooome aweeeeeesome trip! Never experienced anything quite like that in my entttttttire life!”
“Well, John, welcome! Welcome! Wellllllllcome!”
“Is everything always this happy in heaven?” I responded.
“You’d better believe it! Iced-tea’s already made, there’s two-thousand three-hundred and forty-one people lined up waiting to see you, and the bedrooms couldn’t be nicer! Streets are paved of gold, the vehicles float on air, there’s not an ounce of pollution, and, if you happen to slip and fall on the ground, it’s never a problem, since you can’t cut, bruise, or hurt any of your flesh! It’s heavenly flesh!”
“I think I got all that!” I replied. “Wow, this sounds really awesome!”
I was burning with excitement. There were things to do! Finally, I had arrived! I was home!
Friends, are you ready for heaven? Heaven is an awesome place! You’ll not want to miss it. To be sure, however, there’s only one way to get in, which is God’s way, which is described for us in God’s word, the Bible:
1. We must believe that God is good, and has our best interests in mind.
“I have loved you with an everlasting love.” (Jeremiah 31:3)
2. We must accept the fact that we have sinned and done wrong in God’s sight by breaking his laws and commandments.
“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23)
3. We must accept the fact that sin has it’s consequences! The “wages” of sin is eternal death — eternal separation from God, forever and ever and ever!
“For the wages of sin is death.” (Romans 6:23a) “The soul that sinneth, it shall die.” (Ezekiel 18:4b)
4. We must accept the fact that Jesus Christ died on a cruel cross in order to satisfy God’s just requirements for our sins; God’s anger against sin was poured out on Jesus, so that he could suffer instead of us!
“… Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures.” (1 Corinthians 15:3) “For our sake [God the Father] made [Jesus Christ] to be sin who knew no sin, so that in [Jesus Christ] we might become the righteousness of God.” (2 Corinthians 5:21)
5. We must understand that being “saved” from God’s wrath against sin involves a personal decision on our part: It is not automatic, but is like a love relationship in which bride and groom meet at the altar to exchange their vows. Until we each personally receive Christ into our heart, by faith — until we have confessed that we are a sinner, and are in need of God’s mercy to save us from God’s righteous judgment against sin — we are still not his, and he is not ours!
“He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.” (John 3:36) “But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.” (John 1:12)
Jesus died and rose again, so that, through him, we might have eternal life! Are you trusting in him today? Have you repented of your sin? Where will you go if you were to die tonight? Are you ready?
“Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?” (John 11:25-26)