We live in a nice section of the country. It's a great place to bring up children. It's a nice place to retire. People are friendly and we have plenty of conveniences. The streets are safe. The economy is good.
Still ... upon reflection, I think we'd all agree that it's not much like heaven. We have several things in our town that you'd never see in heaven.
Our town has a cemetery, but heaven doesn't. There are no hillsides dotted with the markers of loved ones 'across Jordan.' You won't find silent cities of the dead in heaven, for no one ever dies there! John wrote, '... there shall be no more death ...' (Revelation 21:4).
Our town has a hospital, but heaven doesn't. This time of year the hospitals are filled with the sick, but there are no sicknesses, diseases, or injuries in heaven. Sickness came into the world as a result of sin, and all those ill effects are reversed in heaven. John said, '... the former things are passed away' (Revelation 21:4).
Our town has a jail, but heaven doesn't. We live in a wicked society. Every night the news tells us about those who were robbed, raped, assaulted, extorted, beaten, or killed the night before. We rush to fasten our windows, bolt our doors, and secure our homes.
But did you know that there will be no bad news in heaven? The doors on those mansions have no dead bolts, the windows have no locks, and there are no burglar alarms. 'And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb's book of life' (Revelation 21:27).
The wedding feast is by 'invitation only' and nobody crashes that party! Heaven doesn't need a jail, for there will be no criminals there.
Our town has a nursing home, but heaven doesn't. We daily see the aging process in our loved ones and ourselves. Our skin wrinkles, our vision dims, our strength fails, our hearing goes, our energy wanes (cf. Ecclesiastes 12:3-7). But in that land there are no retirement homes and no nursing facilities. In heaven we receive new, incorruptible bodies (2 Corinthians 5:1-6).
Our town has a funeral home, but heaven doesn't. Hardly a week goes by without some sadness mixed with our blessings. We face heartaches, and sometimes heartbreaks, far more frequently than would be our choice. We find ourselves visiting funeral homes to bid farewell to our loved ones.
But the Bible says, 'And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes, and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying ...' (Revelation 21:4).
Our town has a drug store, but heaven doesn't. Here we have to deal with headaches, arthritis, and a million other pains. There are no drug stores in heaven! Because nobody has any sickness! John wrote, '... neither shall there be any more pain ...' (Revelation 21:4).
Our town has security lights, but heaven doesn't. Most businesses, and many homeowners pay additional fees for street lamps, but in heaven 'the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof' (Revelation 21:23). 'There shall be no night there' (Revelation 21:25), so there will be no street lamps, no night-lights, no candles, and no light switches.
Our town has an adult video store, nightclubs, and places to gamble, but heaven does not. There are many places of temptation in our community. The devil and his workers have been busy (1 Peter 5:8), and their influence in seen all around. Oh, how we wish we could lay our armor aside and just rest from the constant battle of faith (Ephesians 6:13-18).
That day is coming! In the land where we are staking our claim, the devil has no passport. In fact, he will have been cast down into the lake of fire and brimstone (Revelation 20:10). His helpers, too, who are personified as the beast and the false prophet by John, will be cast into that lake (Revelation 19:20). There are no porn shops, beer stores, or casinos in heaven (cf. Proverbs 20:1; Ephesians 6:18).
Don't you want to go to such a place? Have you made your reservations by trusting in Jesus, submitting to His will, contacting His blood, and reaching His grace? His requirements for salvation are found in His Gospel. These include: learning about Him (John 6:44-45); believing in Him as God's Son (John 8:24); repenting of all sins for Him (Luke 13:3); confessing faith in His deity (Romans 10:9-10); and being baptized into Him (Acts 2:38; Mark 16:16). He then asks that we live faithfully unto death (Revelation 2:10). Then we will be ushered into a place that is not really much like our town!