Heaven: A Christian Perspective

Heaven - What Is it Like and Where Is it?
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In the Islamic understanding, death is not the end of life but only the end of the appointed period during which human beings are tested. It is a transitional phase in which the spirit ruh is separated from the body. God, who is the sole source of creation and sustenance, is the master of the day of judgment.

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The rendering of accounts - required from all people - is to be given to God alone ; Most of these signs are natural catastrophes and some of them appear collectively. Later hadith literature added other signs like the rising of the sun from the West; the appearance of the Antichrist al-dajjal ; the descent from heaven of the Messiah Isa Jesus son of Mary who will fight the Antichrist, and break the crosses.

Then, it will all be blown again and they will be tending and looking on. Every soul shall be paid in full for what it has earned. After the accounting is done, the disbelievers shall be taken to hell until, when they have come forth, and its gates will be opened And you shall see the angels encircling about the throne proclaiming the praise of their lord and justly the issue shall be decided between them.

Muslims and Christians agree that death is the end of life, and a time in which the soul separates from the body, returns to God, and is judged. Preparation is important for death therefore. There is agreement on a general resurrection at the end of time, a general or last judgment, when all souls will have to render an account of what they have done, and will be rewarded with heaven or hell. There is debate in both traditions on whether hell is eternal, or whether some might be released from hell at some point.

Are Visits to Heaven for Real?

Also, it is held in both tradition s that no one knows the time of the impending general judgment, except that it is held that each so ul is judged upon death. Even so, no one knows for sure when he or she will die, so the usual teaching in both traditions is that we have to be prepared for death at any time. Muslims hold that Jesus was not crucified and that another died in his place , but was taken up into heaven.

Therefore he was not resurrected.

Muslims hold that God alone is our judge; Christians hold that the Word of God incarnate in Jesus Christ will be our judge. Christians hold that no one can be righteous by following the law, or, what is the same thing, no one can be accounted righteous simply on the basis of his or her deeds.

Therefore everyone needs an intercessor, and that intercessor is Jesus Christ. There is dispute in the Islamic tradition about intercession; some hold that Muhammad might intercede on the last day, others dispute this. Again, Christians typically insist that the just are saved by faith in God and in Christ , there is dispute among Christians as to the extent that we are rewarded for good works.

Generally, Lutherans and Calvinist Christians deny that merit is attached to good works, and most mainline Protestants have followed this position. Belief in the imminence of the day of judgment has attenuated among most western Christians. Likewise, among many denominations, there seems to be some uncertainty about afterlife.

Heaven and near-death experiences: Separating fact from fiction - Religion News Service

Generally, Muslims seems to be much more certain about the existence of afterlife, and about the judgment on the Last Day. The reality of afterlife, the nature of heaven and hell, and the role of both faith and works in salvation are all points where fruitful discussion can be had among Christians and Muslims, especially since the very reality of afterlife tends to be challenged in modern contemporary settings by the assumption that nature is all that exists, and that the mind and therefore the soul or spirit cannot exist apart from the brain.

Death, Judgment, Heaven and Hell Death, Judgment, Heaven and Hell: A Christian Perspective In Christian tradition, death is the end of individual life on earth, but not the end of personal consciousness, which survives the death of the body as the soul. Final Judgment The New Testament is clear that at the end of time all human beings will be judged. Personal Judgment Besides the judgment at the end of time, most Christians hold that those who die are judged immediately after their death.

Resurrection The resurrection of Jesus from the dead is the model and reason for the Christian belief in the resurrection of the dead at the end of history. Heaven Theologically, heaven is the fullness of the presence of God Psalm "In your presence there is fullness of joy. The sacrificial system involving the desert tabernacle and later the temple in Jerusalem was never meant to be a permanent solution to humanity's sin. All of the Bible points to a Messiah, a coming Savior promised by God to deal with the problem of sin once and for all.

A Second Chance?

He is the one who will build a house for my Name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. This Messiah, Jesus Christ, was punished for all the sins of humanity. He took the penalty human beings deserved by dying on the cross, and God's requirement for a perfect blood sacrifice was satisfied. God's great plan of salvation is based not on people being good — because they can never be good enough — but on the atoning death of Jesus Christ.

Because people can never be good enough to get to heaven, God provided a way, through justification , for them to be credited with the righteousness of Jesus Christ:. Getting to heaven is not a matter of keeping the Commandments, because no one can.

Heaven & Earth

Neither is it a matter of being ethical, going to church , saying a certain number of prayers, making pilgrimages, or attaining levels of enlightenment. Those things may represent goodness by religious standards, but Jesus reveals what matters to him and his Father:.

Why Sound Doctrine Leads to Effective Action for Good

No one comes to the Father except through me. Receiving salvation through Christ is a simple step-by-step process that has nothing to do with works or goodness.

A second model of implicit faith is often inferred from Romans , where Paul appears to suggest that unbelieving Gentiles who "do not have the law" will be judged according to their "conscience". Inclusivists characteristically apply this to those who do not hear the Gospel before they die. As we have seen, however, Romans later makes hearing and responding to the Gospel a matter of critical importance for all people, whether they have known the law or not.

In any case, it is important to realise that conscience is itself affected by sin, and is thus hardly infallible. Scripture provides no explicit teaching on this matter, but it does offer hints that those who perish before they are old enough to make a conscious commitment might be saved.

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In Christianity, heaven is traditionally the location of the throne of God as well as the holy According to some views, some Christians in the 1st century believed that the Kingdom of God was coming to Earth within their own lifetimes and. Christian theism is, of course, more specific than that, and Christian theists typically make the following.

It may be significant here that Jesus depicted the kingdom of God as belonging to children Matthew Although we are all "conceived in sin" Psalm , Ronald Nash argues that our final judgment turns not on our sinful condition as members of a fallen human race, but on the sinful deeds we commit "in the body" 2 Corinthians By definition, he says, this standard cannot apply to deceased infants.

Following Charles Hodge and Benjamin Warfield, Nash concludes on this basis that all who die in infancy within and outside the womb should be numbered among the elect.

Related God

Jesus said, "whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be judged but has crossed over from death to life. The New Testament adds much to our understanding of heaven and hell , but we are still not permitted to add our own subjective ideas and experience-based conclusions to what God has specifically revealed through His inerrant Word. Three Primary Eschatological Views 1. You would be preoccupied instead with the majesty and grace of the One whose glory fills the place. The limits of our curiosity are thus established by the boundary of biblical revelation. My belief is rooted in one deep biblical and theological theme: God is good. The Bible , God's inspired Word , has much to say about humanity's so-called "goodness.

What is clear is that, if those who die as infants are granted eternal life, it will come purely by the grace of God, whom we must always recognise as the final arbiter in these matters. The same would apply to a fourth category of persons sometimes linked to the wider hope — those whose mental disability renders them unable to respond overtly to the Gospel. In this instance, as in the others we have considered, God will have mercy "on whom He wants to have mercy" Romans So far, we have examined only those who die without professing faith, and who move straight from death to final judgement, as Hebrews seems to suggest they will.