A New Heaven and a New Earth

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; Revelation 21v1: for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. 

If you have not already done so you should first read Jesus Returns - The New Jerusalem descending from the sky, because this, surprisingly, should preceed the vision of a "New Heaven and a New Earth" and it will help you understand this section better if you read it first.

I suggest that this vision is at the end of the 1000 years when the journey of “The New Jerusalem” is over. Landing on a far distant planet, the previous inhabitants of the earth, the occupants of The New Jerusalem, would see and recognize a “new heaven and a new earth”. The landscape would look different and so would the heavens, because there would be different star constellations, moons and planets in the sky.

I saw a new heaven and a new earth, because the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. “There was no more sea” must, on reflection, mean that there were no people, because it would not make sense that there was no sea, which would be a basic requirement for a habitable planet.

Their first view of their new home would be from the “ship” as it came in to land or into orbit. The planet would presumably be devoid of any indigenous life, since it had been prepared especially for them and “there were no people” would then make sense.

Is there anything in the rest of the Bible which can substantiate this interpretation of the resurrection? Surely Jesus would have known about the resurrection being a physical one and would have told us, or at least given us a clue? Maybe clues which would only be understood by generations during the End Times? Did he ever give any indication that we would all be emigrating to another planet?

Even those who have studied his teachings, right up to the present day, seem to have missed much of the meaning contained in these parables. At the time, he appeared to speak in riddles which even his disciples did not understand, let alone the ordinary people to whom he was speaking.

Let us now examine some of these, in the light of the previous suggestions, and our modern understanding, to see if they confirm, or weaken our theory.

One of the best known sayings of Jesus, with the benefit of modern day knowledge, seems to confirm that heaven is another planet and this can be found in the Gospel according to John.

Jesus parables seem to confirm our interpretation.

 

John Chapter 14 v 2. says:

In my Father’s House are many mansions. If it were not so, I would have told you. I go now to prepare a place for you. And if I go, I will return, and take you with me, so that where I am, you may be also 

Now the words “house” and “mansion” in the original texts are, apparently, two of at least five words which all mean “abiding place”. So the words “house” and “mansion” are just reasonable interpretations of the only “abiding places” known to John 2000 years ago.

In more recent translations, the text becomes “in my father’s house are many rooms”. But we know God does not have a house on earth, so we must be talking about an “abode” in “heaven” and something a bit more than a “house”.

Knowing now that “heaven,” with the benefit of modern knowledge, cannot be just up in the sky, where the clouds are, it must, of necessity, be much further away and today we could, quite reasonably, translate the words of Jesus as:

“Where my Father lives, there are many planets. I go now to prepare one for you. Then I will return to take you there, so that where I am, you shall be also.”  Is this not exactly what the previous vision of the New Jerusalem, and the description of its journey and its destination describes?

Most people who believe in heaven or an “afterlife”, think of a place where they will exist in a spirit form after death. Common belief is that the transfer is immediately after, or within a few days of, physical death. The only way to go to heaven therefore, is to die. Jesus says something completely different. 

In John 3 v 3 he says: “I say to you “unless a man is born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God”. He does not say “unless a man dies” he cannot see the kingdom of God. He seems to be confirming that the resurrection will be a physical one and the only way a person can ascend to heaven is to be resurrected or born again.

Many have interpreted “being born again” to mean that one must repent and then go on to become a better person and lead a better life in the future. But the statement does not say this. Why would one seek a symbolic reference, when a literal meaning agrees better with the spoken words?

In order to enter the new world prepared for us, we will certainly need to be “born again” because we will not survive a 1000 year journey without being created again, maybe several times over!

He confirms the situation again in John 3.13, when he says that no one has yet ascended into heaven (even though millions of people have died) except “He who has come down from Heaven”, that is to say, The Son of Man (Himself). It seems that Jesus is confirming that going to heaven will necessitate a literal resurrection but that no one has yet been resurrected!

For further confirmation, look at Peter’s Sermon in The Acts of The Apostles:

Ch 2 v.29“Men and Brethren, let me speak freely to you of the patriarch David; that he is both dead and buried and in his tomb to this day. For David did not ascend into the heavens (V.34)

The great patriarch David is dead and buried in his tomb! He has not yet ascended into heaven, because no one has yet been resurrected. But he will be resurrected, when the time comes.

Job, an ancient prophet from c.1600 BC confirms that they knew long ago that the resurrection would be a physical one. 

In Ch19 v 25/27 he says: "For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: and though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God…………

Job could not have been more specific about a literal, physical resurrection than this, 1500 years before Jesus was born and 3500 years before the earliest date when he might be resurrected.

Jesus says in John Ch11 v 25/26 “He who believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live”. This seems to be quite straightforward. Jesus is confirming that those who believe in him, and die, will be resurrected at some time in the future.

But he continues: “Whoever lives and believes in me shall never die”.Whoever is living (at the time of the second coming) and believes in him, will not die. They will be taken into The New Jerusalem to rule with God, for a thousand years.

I suggest that perhaps more of Jesus’ teachings and parables will now take on a new meaning, in the light of these new interpretations of the prophecies from The Book of Revelation.