The Hope Laid Up for You in Heaven
Bible Reading: Colossians chapter 1
I was driving the Uhaul truck, filled with all our belongings, Laura was following in our family car, filled with our kids. We were on our way from Columbia City to Astoria, for I’d been called to serve as the Pastor of Lewis and Clark Bible Church. I’d find out later Laura was driving with tears in her eyes. We’d left behind our nice newer home, our home church, along with all of our friends. Our new home in Astoria was the parsonage at the church and to say it was needy would be an understatement! It hadn’t been painted in years. The dining room stunk, as cats had urinated in the attic area above, even staining the sheet rock. The living room carpet was threadbare, the kitchen linoleum was torn and there were a couple of holes in the walls. The parsonage bedroom had a red/pink shag carpet and the walls were adorned with a red velvet kind of wallpaper. We’d find out later the basement was subject to flooding during the frequent winter storms. Needless to say, it needed some major fixing up!
Moving can be difficult. There’s all the stuff to pack and move. Sometimes the move can be from a nicer home to a more needy one. If you are a believer in Christ, no matter how nice your present home might be, one day you will make one last final move to a new glorious home in heaven. Colossians 1:5 speaks of “the hope laid up for you in heaven.” The term translated “laid up” is an interesting one. It was used in ancient times of the stored goods a king would lay up to reward his faithful servants. Your salvation was not just a salvation from sin, death and judgment; it was a salvation to heaven, your new home. This world is not your home, as the song says you’re just “a passing through” and your treasures are “laid up somewhere beyond the blue.”
So what’ll this new home be like? First, note it’s “a house not made with hands” because its builder is God Himself (2 Corinthians 5:1). Unlike the earthly tent (your body) you now reside in, your new home is “eternal in the heavens.” What you have now is only a temporary dwelling place, not fit for the long haul, but once you meet heaven you’ll never move again. It is a house with “many dwelling places,” which Jesus Himself has been working to prepare for you (John 14:1-2). Inasmuch as “He does all things well,” how glorious our new home must be!
It’ll be a home not subject to rot or disrepair or theft of any such troubles. How much thought and work and energy and money do we spend on upgrading and maintaining our earthly homes! But our new home will need no improvements. Our new dwelling place will be both safe and free from any sort of degradation (Matthew 6:20). Did you know you’ve already got reservations (1 Peter 1:4)! It’ll be a home free from all the problems which plague our earthly experience. In the world we have tribulation, but that which ails us now will be “no longer” in heaven. There’ll “no longer” be any tears, or death, or mourning, or pain (Revelation 21:4). One other thing will be “no longer” and that is sin, for heaven is a home “in which righteousness dwells” (2 Peter 3:13). It’ll be a home of preeminent value. I regularly get an email from Zillow with an estimate of the current value of our house. Can you imagine the estimated value of the new home God has prepared for us in heaven! The Apostle deemed it of such value he said it’d be “very much better” for him to go to be there with Jesus (Philippians 1:23). Its value transcends our present ability to comprehend (1 Corinthians 2:9).
It’ll be a home to which we are well-fitted. A glorious transformation awaits when we move from this home to that one. God will put off from us all which remains of sin so we will be perfectly fitted for our new home. Philippians 3:20-21 speaks to this, “For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ; who will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory, by the exertion of the power that He has even to subject all things to himself.”
Finally, it’ll be a home with a marvelous view! I’ve been in some homes having gorgeous views–of the deep blue ocean, or some majestic mountain. Yet there’s nothing in all of creation as beautiful as Jesus, our glorious Lord and Savior! We will see him as he is and he “will be marveled at among all who have believed” (2 Thessalonians 1:10). We will be with Him! And we will praise Him together with all those “in Christ” who have gone on before us! One final move awaits every believer. One final move to a new glorious home. You were saved to that end, dear friends. And therein lies your hope.
You’ve Been Saved to the Hope Laid Up for You in Heaven
Lord Jesus,how wonderful is Your salvation, which has worked not only to save us from sin, but to save us to this glorious hope laid up for us in heaven. Forgive us that we don’t think quite enough about heaven, that place you are even now preparing for us. May our hearts be set on it. May we yearn for it. Remind us amidst our present sorrows and tears, that our new home will lack all that troubles us here on earth. Captivate our thoughts to that day when we will be glorious transformed and brought into Your presence. When we will marvel at You! And praise You forevermore with unfettered hearts!