Sunday, January 17, 2010

Our Inheritance: Heaven or Earth?

Sunday, I heard a message from the co-author of the book THE POWER OF PRAISE AND WORSHIP by Terry Law and Jim Gilbert. Though I did not quite agree with everything Mr. Gilbert said, I found his talk to be excellent in that I was engaged, my mind was going, and my knowledge of God’s word was being challenged. As he spoke, various scriptures were coming to mind. At some points I found myself laughing, other times I felt offended and then there were moments when my heart was meditating and I wanted to leap from my chair and say, “Amen!” (but I didn’t…I stayed seated).

An MP3 of Gilbert’s speech can be found at http://www.therockonline.org/downloads/series/39/#viewer-top. In my notes (yes, I am one of those who likes to take lots of notes), I wrote the following points:

> Gilbert sounds as though he leans more toward Calvinism verses Armenian.

> Our Home: Earth is our inheritance. With this Gilbert quotes Revelations 21:1-3:
1Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. 2And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, "Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God.


> In reference to “New Jerusalem” Gilbert states Hebrews 12.

> God does all things for His enjoyment according to Colossians 1:15-20:
He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. 17And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. 19For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.


> Our Job: God calls us to build, plant, multiply, and leaven society. Gilbert draws attention to Jeremiah 24 (the vision Jeremiah receives), Jeremiah 28 (he pleads with a false profit), and Jeremiah 29:5-11.

> Our Future: Filled with grace and hope! Gilbert draws attention to 1 Peter 1:13 and 1 Corinthians 4:5:

> (1 Peter 1:13) 13Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.

> (1 Corinthians 4:5) Therefore do not pronounce judgment before the time, before the Lord comes, who will bring to light the things now hidden in darkness and will disclose the purposes of the heart. Then each one will receive his commendation from God.


As I mentioned before, I did not see eye to eye with everything Mr. Gilbert said. Was there a political agenda? Perhaps. There were definitely political points made. I’m told a fabulous book about HEAVEN was written by Randy Alcorn. I have not read it yet so I cannot give a review at this time. (Maybe that will be a post another day.) Regardless, I encourage those who desire a challenge to listen to Mr. Gilbert’s message and study it out in the gospels. I feel his words will certainly get you thinking.

My answer to the above question: Our Inheritance Heaven or Earth? In this season of my life I feel perhaps it is both and neither. Revelation 21:1 says NEW heaven AND NEW earth...the keyword being NEW! The old will pass away.

Isaiah 65:17: For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth, and the former things shall not be remembered or come into mind.

Isaiah 66:22: For as the new heavens and the new earth that I make shall remain before me, says the LORD, so shall your offspring and your name remain.

2 Peter 3:13: But according to his promise we are waiting for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.

Revelation 20:11: Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. From his presence earth and sky fled away, and no place was found for them.


Not to mention time is relative...but that is for another post!
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