By Elizabeth Prata
I hope you think of heaven every day. I hope you think of our home, the country where we are destined to go. I hope you rejoice in the fact that it exists. I hope you are thrilled with the fact that we will be joining the Savior in heaven someday. I hope you think on the fact that His work on the cross made this possible.
He lived as a human (though still God) … endured a lifetime of mundanity and obscurity (even though He is glorious King of All) … received mocking, insults, beatings, humiliation, and death on a cross (even though He received only praise and honor in heaven)… He did all that to be obedient to His Father, and to redeem a people.
We know all this. (I hope).
I do think about heaven a lot. What it will be like to be there. To be in a place of purity and glory. To praise Jesus.
Jesus expects certain kind of worship. He does not accept any type of worship we throw at Him. He has His commandments, which describe a high standard of having no idols, having no other gods before Him, and not taking His name in vain. He has His Old Testament, in which His standards are scrupulously outlined. (No strange fire, Leviticus 10:1-2, Numbers 26:61). He has His New Testament in which we are given precepts for worship and service (No lying, as Ananias and Sapphira discovered, etc). And so on. Jesus does not receive any old worship.
I often think of when I’m in heaven, praising him from pure lips. (Zephaniah 3:9). I contemplate the praise and song I will be delighted to offer Him. I picture the global Bride before His throne, singing and exclaiming to the King.
Then of late, my mental gaze shifts from seeing me in the global body, to picturing Jesus, receiving praise from His Bride. He will accept the song and worship and acclamations that He is due. He will accept praise and honor and glory and it will not be filtered through the Spirit (Romans 8:26-27). The worship Jesus receives on the Day we are brought home will not be rejected as having impure motivations (Proverbs 16:2, Jeremiah 17:9, Hebrews 4:12).
The praise and honor we give Jesus in heaven will be pure and holy and accepted as His due. I cannot wait to see that moment. Picture the global Bride, installed in heaven’s New Jerusalem, where there is no sun to compete with the Light that is the Son. Picture the songs and praises flowing from the rejoicing (and relieved) humanity He redeemed. Picture that glorious throne, upon which sits the King at the right hand of the Father, the train of His robe filling the temple. (I know I’m mixing metaphors and timing of the heavenly temple and the eternal state). Picture the light around His face, hair white as snowy wool, smiling as He surveys His bride, who is singing to Him.
When from our lips and hearts, we offer all honor to Jesus, and He accepts it, because He deserves it. Finally, finally He is given what He expects and is worthy of.
What a day that will be.
the twenty-four elders fall down before him who is seated on the throne and worship him who lives forever and ever. They cast their crowns before the throne, saying,
Worthy are you, our Lord and God,
to receive glory and honor and power,
for you created all things,
and by your will they existed and were created.
And they sang a new song, saying, “Worthy are you to take the scroll and to open its seals, for you were slain, and by your blood you ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation. (Revelation 5:9).