Preparing for Heaven

Building the Eternal Phase of Your Life

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Christians are to battle doubts as they come so they can hold on to truth, going on to practice living it in ever more complicated situations in order to expand it.

Doubts continually arise in the active Christian mind. Those doubts raise numerous questions about truth. Christians are to assure that others overcome doubts and stay close to the truth. The best way to handle doubt is to help one another not settle for superficial understanding of what we learn in the Bible. We can keep asking deeper questions and find that the Holy Spirit will lead us into more about each truth of our faith. This must be done together with those in our Christian Inner Circles. Battling doubt alone is dangerous. Battling doubt with other Christians allows us to watch out for one another to see that we hold to the truth while we delve into more questions about the truth.

Doubts need not be dangerous if we help one another see them merely as invitations by the Holy Spirit to resolve them together with other Christians. But, we also need to accept that we will never be able to resolve all of our doubts because spiritual truth can be beyond our ability to understand.

Job 37:5 tells us, “God’s voice thunders in marvelous ways; he does great things beyond our understanding.” And through the great prophet Isaiah God said, “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” That is Isaiah 55, verse 9.

So, we must help one another with the spiritual reality of doubt. We can never totally understand God, so doubts will arise naturally. We need to help one another realize that doubt about things we do not quite understand does not make them untrue.

There are things in life that we do not understand but still know they are true. We use electricity, but even scientists have doubts about all that it can be used for. We all have seen magnets work, but doubts about magnetism led to further exploration and trying it out for different applications. As a result, life- saving medical equipment was invented, among many other things.

It is the same with spiritual truth. Once we learn a specific truth from the Bible, we can look further into it. If we turn doubts into seeking more to understand that truth better, deeper truth will set us free from doubt. John 8:31-32 reads, “So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, ‘If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.’”

Jesus said, “if you abide in my word”, and I take that to mean “if you live what I tell you”. Then He says, “and you will know the truth”. The Greek word used for the word “know” is one of a few words for “know”, but this “know” means to know by experience. In other words, truth that you know is valid because you have walked out in faith on that truth and found by experience that it is true.

If I go to the hardware store and buy a ladder that says it will hold my weight, I know by the manufacturer’s testing. But, when I actually climb up on that ladder to clean my house gutters, I then know the ladder will hold my weight because it has actually done that. Truth verified by experience is what Jesus meant as recorded in John 8:32.

And, this kind of knowing that has already been tested is the kind that sets us free from doubt.
So, we Christians are to help one another hold on to the truth by being there with one another as we stretch our faith to live various truths of the Bible.

Life throws many difficulties our way, and those troubles often challenge the truth we easily say we believe. But, then we sometimes find it very challenging to believe, or “know” that truth when we really have to count on it. An example is when a Christian loses a beloved spouse through death. Biblical truth that all will be okay can easily be doubted, as can God’s goodness in taking away the one loved so much. When that happens, Christian friends and family must come in to help hold to the truth that God is present and will sustain the grieving widow or widower through the pain of loss. In time, the person will experience God’s love and support. Certainty that God will see her or him through life’s most difficult trials will then be known at a much deeper level.

Through stepping out in deeper trust of the truth we know in our head but not so much in our living, we grow deeper in the truth, make it far more difficult to doubt that truth, and continue to base our lives on that truth.

Spiritual truth is to become a part of us. Faith from knowledge that is just facts and not put into practice is not deeply retained. As such, holding on to that truth is difficult. Not remembered, it becomes rather meaningless. Truth must become important enough to transform from just knowledge into righteous behavior. It is meaningless if it does not progress beyond being just a topic for conversation. Instead, truth is to become who we are.

Many other Togethers have a part to play when we help one another push faith further into truth-based spiritual life. All along the journey of growth in our spirits, it is critical to use this Together of holding to truth together. We must stay firm to the new heights of truth actualized in our lives. Otherwise, like short-lived, exciting fads, they will disappear.

In Philippians 3:10-12, the Apostle Paul encourages us to know the power of Jesus’ resurrection and make it our own. Holding together to the truth that we possess resurrected spirits in which Jesus Christ has come to live, spirits that will never taste death and separation from God, allows us to live recklessly righteous.

Holding to this one wonderful truth of our own resurrection with Jesus that has already happened and mysteriously is yet to happen again can transform us from timid spirits fearful of shadows to supernatural spirits unafraid of obeying God in confrontations with evil. If this is the great result of holding to one truth, imagine the transformation of our spirits when we hold one another to so many other scriptural truths.

Believers in their Christian friendships, Christian families, and Christian marriages can present the truth in ways that resolve confusion. If these basic groups of the church can establish an atmosphere without judgment, then people will be able to freely express their doubts and receive patient responses and teaching.

The more we ponder Christian truth together, the more there is to find. Just when we think we have mastered the operation of a passage of Scripture, we find the Holy Spirit teaching us another application which is harder to put into practice. With a biblical climate of acceptance without judgment, we can hold tighter to the truth while together we delve into it more thoroughly.

It is the lasting relationships in our Christian Inner Circles that are necessary for the long term resolution of doubt which comes from our inability to know more fully the truth in Scripture. It is these closer people who will stick by us throughout our doubts, realizing that we might not yet be able to understand the level of truth necessary. We might resist because the new biblical insight would make an unwanted claim on our lives. Or it might be that understanding the truth contradicts a strong personal philosophy, bias or prejudice. Or the truth might not be readily accepted because we cannot yet fit it into our larger understanding of theology. With time together, Christian friends, family members or spouse will eventually understand the existing doubt and identify what blocks understanding of the scriptural truth in question. Then friends, family members and spouse can effectively address the source of uncertainty.

In heaven we will not have to hold to truth together. Without sin, we will not forget the truth we already know. The devil will no longer be able to challenge truth, and differences in understanding of doctrine among the people of God will be cleared up.

But it is likely that we will still be useful to one another in heaven by helping others step out further in their faith. For example, a Christian now, in this life before death, praises God for providing adequate income. His or her family has enough money for their basic needs. But, then, a job is lost and future income becomes uncertain. The believer who could praise God when things were good cannot so easily trust in God when things are going bad. That Christian’s faith in God is as strong as it has ever been, just not as strong as it soon will be after others in his or her Christian Inner Circle hold to the truth together that God can be trusted.

Why wouldn’t that happen in heaven? Don’t we think that we will grow in our faith in heaven? Satan’s lie in the Garden of Eden was that we could become like God. Do we believe that same deception of the devil? Do we believe that just by entering heaven we will have the completeness of God? It is far more likely that we have in front of us a wonderful life of continual discovery in matters of faith.

We will most likely be learning more and more truth for all of eternity. Never will we be omniscient as God is, knowing everything. But, we will all begin at the growing edge where our knowledge of the truth was at death. Holding on to the truth together now will just get us ahead on our eternal journey into expanding truth. In heaven, we will be learning more truth with the next question about a particular spiritual truth hovering just in the back of our minds, unhindered by sin. We will be ready to embrace new aspects of that truth and see it incorporated into our lives.

Let’s hit the streets of heaven running because we held to truth together. Let’s look forward to learning more and more truth because we loved to find it and apply it before we died. And, let’s go to heaven with an appetite to understand everything about truth because we found before death that truth goes deeper and reveals more and more wonderful things.