Eternal in the Heavens–
Jesus said that He has gone to prepare a place for us.
“Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.” (John 14:1)
“In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.” (John 14:2)
“And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.” (John 14:3)
To better understand these verses of Scripture, it will help if we know what the Greek words are that are translated “house” (my Father’s house), “mansion” (many mansions), and “place” (prepare a place) and what they literally mean.
The word translated “house” is the Greek word oiakia which means “the family home”.
The word translated “mansion” is the Greek word mone which means “a staying place or a residence”.
The word translated “place” is the Greek word topos which means “a spot, such as a spot to occupy”.
So John 14:2 is actually telling us that in the Heavenly Father’s family home are many residences and Jesus has gone to prepare a spot for us.
The “place” or spot that He has prepared for us is two-fold.
The Bible teaches us that the first “place” or “spot” that He has prepared for us is a “body”, a heavenly house as it were for our eternal soul and spirit.
“For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.” (2Cor. 5:1)
“For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven: If so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked.” (2Cor. 5:2-3)
“For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened: not for that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life.” (2Cor. 5:4)
“It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.” (1Cor. 15:44)
The Apostle Paul was stoned at Lystra and left for dead but the Lord raised him up so that he could continue to preach the Gospel. Fourteen years later he tells of this incident.
“I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth) such an one caught up to the third heaven.” (2Cor. 12:2)
When the Apostle Paul’s spirit was caught up to heaven he inhabited his spiritual body that the Lord had prepared for him and he indwelled that body for the short time that he was there.
He had the same physical feelings as an earthly body, only with no pain or discomfort. He couldn’t tell the difference.
The Bible tells us several things about this spiritual body that we shall have.
It will be a body like unto Christ’s resurrected body.
“For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.” (Php. 3:20-21)
This body will have authority over and able to subdue “things”.
Time and distance will not constrain our spiritual body.
Jesus rose from the grave and told the women at the tomb, “Touch me not for I have not yet ascended to our Heavenly Father.”
However, a few hours later He appeared behind closed doors to the disciples and said, “Touch me and see that I am not a Spirit.”
During that short period of time, Jesus had ascended unto the third Heaven (which is above all the heavens, above space and the galaxies and the universe), appeared before the throne of the Heavenly Father, had the sins of all mankind removed from Him, received His royal garments and the crown of the King of kings and the Lord of lords, and returned to earth to appear to His disciples.
We will be able to recognize and know each other in our spiritual bodies.
“And there appeared unto them Elias with Moses: and they were talking with Jesus.” (Mark 9:4)
Jesus had taken Peter, James, and John with Him to a high mountain and He was transfigured before them.
When Moses and Elijah appeared with Jesus, Peter recognized them and knew who they were even though he had never seen them before.
Moses was in his spiritual body because he had previously died but Elijah had been translated alive to heaven and had never known death.
Lastly, our spiritual bodies shall never know death, sorrow, or pain.
“And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.” (Rev. 21:4)
The second “place” or “spot” that the Lord has gone to prepare for us is our actual residence in the family home, the City of New Jerusalem.
“And I John saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.” (Rev. 21:2)
“And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.” (Rev. 21:3)
The Bible says that the family home, the city of New Jerusalem, is fifteen hundred miles wide, fifteen hundred miles tall, and fifteen hundred miles long.
And somewhere in there is a “mansion”, a residence, for every born again believer that shall make heaven their home.
“And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, Having the glory of God: and her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal;” (Rev. 21:10-11)
“And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it. And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof.” (Rev. 21:22-23)
“And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it. And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day: for there shall be no night there.” (Rev. 21:24-25)
“And they shall bring the glory and honour of the nations into it. And there shall in no wise enter into it anything that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life.” (Rev. 21:26-27)
The Bible tells us that,
“But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.” (1Cor. 2:9-10)
When we are born again, God sends His Holy Spirit to live in us and reveal unto us the wonderful and glorious things pertaining to our new life in Christ and God our Heavenly Father.
The born again experience is not just being forgiven for our sins and having a place to go to when we die.
The born again experience is a new life with a new beginning, powerful and wonderful experiences, and a hope for a glorious eternal life ruling and reining as kings and priests with Christ.
That is why the Apostle Paul said towards the end of his life, after a lifetime of knowing God and experiencing the miracles, power, signs, and wonders of his miraculous ministry,
“Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ,” (Php. 3:8)
“And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:” (Php. 3:9)
“That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead.” (Php. 3:10-11)