Sermon Prepared by James McCullen
Email Preach Him with Dr. Jim

HEAVEN
John 14:1-6

1 "Let not your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me. 2 "In My Father's house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. 3 "And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you to Myself; that where I am, {there} you may be also. 4 "And you know the way where I am going."   5 Thomas said to Him, "Lord, we do not know where You are going, how do we know the way?" 6 Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but through Me. (NAS)

Introduction
In the past few weeks I have noted some remarks that stand in great contrast. One of these remarks came from the Governor of Minnesota Jessie Ventura and the other contrasting remarks came from the quarterback of the Los Angles Rams Kurt Warner.

The governor said, "Organized religion is a sham and a crutch for weak-minded people who need strength in numbers," this was voiced in an interview in Playboy, one of the nation's most widely circulated pornographic magazines. Ventura, also said "the best part of his job is being "king" -- "there's no one in this state who can tell me what to do,".
From Friday, October 01, 1999 By Art Toalston MINNEAPOLIS (BP)

The other remark from Kurt Warner states "My mom is a strong Catholic," he said. "She raised me in a Catholic home and I went to Catholic schools, grade school through high school. I was involved in it and had my belief in the Lord and all that, but it never really became what it is today, where my life is lived for Jesus Christ and what he's done for me, until about four years ago." Faith brought Brenda and Kurt peace in a chaotic world. It brought strength in times of crisis. So Jessie Ventura and Kurt Warner are entitled to their opinion, Obviously I will side with Kurt Warner and he is certainly not a weakling.

There are different opinions about heaven. Some would say it is just a fantasy or figment of a persons imagination. Christians say it is a real place prepared for those who become the children of God through the new birth in Jesus the Christ.

If you get your opinions and beliefs from the scripture you will know their is a heaven. I want to point out from the Bible some facts about heaven.
 
 

1.    The Place Called Heaven. v 2-3


2 "In My Father's house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you.    3 "And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you to Myself; that where I am, {there} you may be also.

A.    It Is A Prepared Place. v 2 b - 3 a

    1.    Prepared in Newness.
            Intro: Two (2) words in the New Testament can be translated "NEW ".
            1)    kainos ^2537^ denotes "new," of that which is unaccustomed or unused, not "new" in time,
                recent, but "new" as to form or quality, of different nature from what is contrasted as old. . . .
            2)    neos ^3501^ signifies "new" in respect of time, that which is recent;. . . . (from Vine's
                        Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words) (Copyright (C) 1985, Thomas Nelson Publishers)

            3)    Watch the shades of meaning that come from scriptures that have these two different
                    GREEK words in them.

3501 neos    Matt 9:17     "Nor do {men} put new wine into old wineskins; otherwise the wineskins
burst, and the wine pours out, and the wineskins are ruined; but they put new wine into fresh
wineskins, and both are preserved." (NAS)

                a.    You see this word for "new" meaning recently made.

                2537 kainos    Mark 14:25    "Truly I say to you, I shall never again drink of the fruit of the
                vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God."   (NAS)

                b.    You see this word for "new" as new in quality.

    2.    Prepared with A New Name.
                Rev 2:17   'He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To
                him who overcomes, to him I will give {some} of the hidden manna, and I will give
                him a white stone, and a new name written on the stone which no one knows but he
                who receives it.' (NAS)

Illustration
Do you like your name? In a movie we saw on the plane yesterday a five year old boy was given the opportunity to change his name. He could determine what he wanted to be called.

He chose the name "Frankenstein". I told my granddaughter Stephanie that story and ask her if she would like to change her name and she said no I like Stephanie. I said to her well you look like a Stephanie, she then said well you look like a James.

If you don't like your name I hope you make a better choice than the boy in the movie who choose "Frankenstein". Want you to notice in heaven God has a new name for us.

    3.    Prepared with New Songs. Rev 5:9
            9 And they sang a new song, saying, "Worthy art Thou to take the book, and to break its seals;
            for Thou wast slain, and didst purchase for God with Thy blood {men} from every tribe and
            tongue and people and nation. (NAS)

            (1) There is more about songs and singing in Revelation than any other book than the Psalms.

            (2) 7-11 songs? Sing them 7 times and they only have 11 words.
 
            (3) The Lord is preparing with new songs.
 

    4.    Prepared with a New Heaven and a New Earth.

                Rev 21:1 And I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth
                passed away, and there is no longer {any} sea. (NAS)

    5.    Prepared with all things New. Rev 21:5
            5 And He who sits on the throne said, "Behold, I am making all things new." And He said,
            "Write, for these words are faithful and true." (NAS)

Illustration
Did you hear about the lady who wanted to be buried with a fork in her hand? She had been told all her life save your fork the best is yet to come. She wanted everybody to know she thought the best was yet to come.

Application

The Place Called Heaven. v 2-3
 
 

2.    The Preservation of Heaven. v 2


        "In My Father's house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for
            I go to prepare a place for you.

A.    Preserved Place. v 2 c
            ". . . a place for you . . . "

B.    Preserved Treasures. v 2 c Matt 6:19-21
        19 "Do not lay up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where
        thieves break in and steal. 20 "But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth
        nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; 21 for where your treasure is, there
        will your heart be also. (NAS)

C. Preserved Reservations. 1 Pet 1:4
        ". . . to {obtain} an inheritance {which is} imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away,
        reserved in heaven for you, (NAS)

Illustration
Heavenly Motel Reservations --- Confirmation number. J E S U S
 

Application

        The Preservation of Heaven. v 2
 
 

3.    The Path To Heaven. v 4-6


        4 "And you know the way where I am going." 5 Thomas said to Him, "Lord, we do not know
        where You are going, how do we know the way?" 6 Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the
        truth,  and the life; no one comes to the Father, but through Me. (NAS)

A.    An Accessible Path. Rev 21:13
        "There were} three gates on the east and three gates on the north and three gates on the south
        and three gates on the west." (NAS)

Illustration
The seminary student body at Golden Gate is multi racial and multi ethnic.

We have a new Trustee, Dr McCall a black preacher from a Southern California, church. This church has grown from 35 to 5,000 in 30 years. They have a multi- racial congregation. They have an outreach ministry to Spanish speaking people.

Illustration
Recently I had an opportunity to witness to Bobby Singh a practice team football player for the St. Louis Rams. His brother has recently been shot as a customer in a convenience store hold up, he was eager to here about forgiveness and the hope of heaven. I wrote Kurt Warner and asked him to follow up on my witness.

Conclusion

Let me ask you a question

In your personal opinion;    what do you understand it takes for a person to go to heaven?