I've been reflecting a lot lately on the realities of life after death and the nature of that passage. In my senior Bible courses we've discussed how Heaven is not so much a place of gold where we go someday but a state of being in perfect communion with God. And that hell is less of a place of flaming flesh but an agonizing state of alienation from God and one another, in this state God gives us over to our sinful selves who have chosen death over Him.
Its become abundantly clear to me that if you take intimate relationship with the Creator out of the construct of our theology of Him then we are left with lifeless religion or vain superstitions. "Now this is eternal life: that they may KNOW you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent." (John 17:3). Its not about hanging on til Jesus comes back, its not about living in consumeristic idol worship til we go to the "by and by" someday, its about intimacy with Him. He knows us and has made Himself known to us. He invites us to come to Him, He invites us to His table . . . not later but NOW. Now is the KNOWING.
I believe that the "later" part that is yet to come after this life is the completeness of what we now experience. Then is fullness, now is glimpses. Then we'll see clearly, now we see dimly. But now we see better day by day as we are in relationship w/ Him. His Kingdom is accessed through this relationship, I don't believe there are any other gates. I want to taste it today and long for its completeness.
I'm walking on streets of gold already in Him.
Please pray for my bro, Palmer. Abba, we need you.