The main question the gospel answers is not ‘How can I get to heaven?’ but ‘How can I be a part of heaven coming to earth?’ In this session we explore the gift of the Holy Spirit and what it means to be ‘mini-temples’ of heaven on earth.
After Jesus ascended to heaven two angels told the disciples, “This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven.” (Acts 1:11)
On p.104, I write that at Pentecost, when the disciples received the gift of the Holy Spirit, ‘They became places where heaven and earth met, places where dimensions touched.’
On p.105, I describe every Spirit-filled person as a ‘mini-temple’.
The apostle John’s vision of how the story of heaven and earth ends (or reaches a new beginning) is found in Revelation 21:1-5.
“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband and I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ‘Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.’
He who was seated on the throne said, ‘I am making everything new!’”
In the dualistic worldview (see chapter 1), that divides perfect spirit from imperfect matter, there is something inherently wrong with the physical creation. Therefore history must end with the (often fiery) destruction of the material world and a spiritual ascent to heaven.
Pray that God would show you ways in which you can be a mini-temple, through which the healing power of heaven can flow to the earth around you.