“Why Do You Stand,Gazing IntoHeaven?”
We should not be
waiting to go to heaven,
but rather, preparing for
the Lord’s return
Just after the Lord’s ascension, two angels appeared and admonished the disciples:
“Why do you stand gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven.”
— Acts 1:11
So many Christians today are standing and “gazing into heaven”; all their hope seems to be that one day they will go there, to be saved from all their problems and struggles, and so they are just waiting for that time of blessing. They have taken the “heaven drug” and have become dormant and useless, spiritually speaking.
In fact, nowhere in the New Testament are we told to hope for heaven. It is true that our treasure is currently kept in the heavens for us, where the Lord now is, (1 Pet. 1:4-5; cf. Matt. 6:20), but that is only until the last time. Then, when the Lord Jesus returns, being “revealed from heaven with His mighty angels in flaming fire,” our salvation will be revealed for all to see, and we will have rest (2 Thess. 1:7).
The writings of all the apostles agree that our expectation of the Lord’s soon return should strongly motivate us to prepare to greet Him here.
The grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ,
— Titus 2:11-13
And Peter states:
Since [the heavens and earth] will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God?
— 2 Peter 3:11-12
And John states:
Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.
— 1 John 3:2-3
The Lord is coming again! May these sober words from His servants stir us to look for His soon return, so that we prepare ourselves to greet Him! Then we will not be “ashamed before Him at His coming” (1 John 2:28), but will, instead, have a rich entrance into His everlasting kingdom (2 Pet. 1:11).
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— 4 June 2022 —