Time in Heaven
“And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age”
Time, for God in Heaven, plainly does not follow the same rules as Time does for us on Earth.
One of the primary blocks to our comprehending scripture is forgetting—or not realising—that Heaven is not timeless; although Time likely passes differently there to Time in our world.
Our experience of Time on Earth is preparing us for the afterlife.
Let’s begin with some statements made by Jesus.
Shortly before his crucifixion, Jesus prayed aloud (John 17:5):
“And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I had with you before the world began”.
Jesus is pointing out there was Time in Heaven before the Creation of our world.
Prior to the Earth’s Creation, Jesus shared the glory of God the Father. In the verse above, he asked to return to be with the Father in Heaven.
He came from Heaven and remained in contact with God the Father there, and consequently speaks with authority on the subject. His words were recorded in the New Testament in the Greek language. I will italicise future tenses in the quote below to draw attention to them:
Matthew 8:11,12 – “I say to you that many will come from the east and the west, and will take their places at the feast with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in the Kingdom of Heaven. But the subjects of the Kingdom will be thrown outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth”.
Since Jesus was able to describe future events within the Kingdom of Heaven, it must operate with a future not only from our perspective, but within its own framework.
Here is a reference Jesus made to God’s house in Heaven, where God dwells:
John 14:2,3 – “My Father’s house has many rooms (the accurate translation is not “mansions”); if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me, that you also may be where I am”.
Time must be passing for Jesus in Heaven if he goes there at one specific time and then returns at another. Besides, Jesus states that he will prepare a place in Heaven for his disciples, an activity in the future that would require an input of time. Jesus is not inactive in Heaven right now; he is serving in a sanctuary there (Hebrews 8:2) and interceding (praying) for us (Romans 8:34). All these actions require a framework of heavenly Time.
There are other activities described in scripture as taking place in Heaven. In the past there was rebellion and war. There is the holding of court, discussion, rejoicing, creating, active worshipping, talking. Each of these by nature involves the passing of time. Heaven is not a timeless warp, as some conjecture.
Those in Heaven are aware of the passage of Time there. Revelation 6:10 describes the martyrs: “They called out in a loud voice, ‘How long, Sovereign Lord, holy and true, until you judge the inhabitants of the Earth and avenge our blood?’” Without a doubt, how long is time-related. Verse ١١ continues: “Then each of them was given a white robe, and they were told to wait a little longer…”
Therefore, there is no sensible biblical basis for doubting that Time exists right now in Heaven.
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