Without a doubt the most commonly asked question I have eve received in relation to Heaven is this question, “How can I know that I will go to heaven when I die?” If I were a betting man, I would wager that you’ve probably wondered that yourself, am I right? People want assurance, confidence, and a sense of comfort in their eternal destination. We know it will be wonderful. It’s definitely better than hell. I want to know that I’m going to go. But how?
The truth is, most people believe that when they die, they’ll go to heaven. I read in a recent Barna Group research poll that for every American who believes he or she is going to Hell, there are 120 who believe they’re going to Heaven. Mathematically, that’s more than 99% of Americans believe they will go to heaven when they die. And if you ask them why they believe that, and you’ll hear:
- “I’m a good person.”
- “I’ve never done anything bad in my life.”
- “I’m no Hitler.”
It’s ironic that more people believe they’ll go to heaven when they die than actually believe in heaven (another Barna poll found that 76% of American’s believe Heaven exists)! Now contrast these common beliefs with what Jesus said in Matthew 7: 13-14, “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.”
I think it’s safe to say that Heaven is not our eternal destination by default. We’re not destined to go there automatically. But I also think we can KNOW for certain that we’ll go to heaven when we die. John wrote in 1 John 5:13, “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.”
I’d like to suggest six Biblical truths that will help bolster your faith and perhaps even offer you some form of eternal confidence toward Heaven.
1. We have a PROBLEM with SIN. And the only way we can KNOW that we’ll go to heaven when we die, is if our sin problem is taken care of.
- Romans 3:23 – Everyone has fallen short.
- 1 John 3:4 – Sin is lawlessness.
- Isaiah 59:2 – Sin causes a separation between us and God.
- Proverbs 14:12 – Sin deceives us to think we’re okay.
- Romans 6:23 – Sin has terrible consequences; but, God offers a wonderful gift!
2. God has offered PROVISION for our SIN. God, in His perfect way, provided for a way that our sin can justly be dealt with!
- John 3:16 – God’s love drove Him to deal with sin.
- Hebrews 2:17-18; 4:15-16 – God sent His Son to identify with us.
- 2 Corinthians 5:21 – The Great Exchange – our sin for His righteousness.
3. Jesus’ Death PROVED SIN’s Defeat. When God dealt with our sin, it was for GOOD defeated!
4. It’s Through Jesus that Salvation is PROVIDED. When God deals with sin, He saves the sinner through Jesus.
5. Salvation is PROMISED to those who accept it. Salvation is offered to EVERYONE, yet it’s offered within the conditions of acceptance.
6. Heaven is a Gift PRESERVED for those God Saves. Salvation AND Heaven are given freely to those who accept God’s gift! You cannot work for it, earn it, or achieve it.
- Revelation 22:17 – “…free gift…”
- Titus 3:5 – “…not on the basis of deeds…”
- Ephesians 2:8-9 – “…so that no one may boast…”
- Romans 5:18-19 – Justified by Jesus.
It’s my prayer that God’s Word has illuminated in your heart a sense of “eternal confidence” about your eternal home. As God’s children, we shouldn’t wander aimlessly in life as spiritual orphans unsure of our next home. God’s Word is our assurance and it clearly emphasizes this truth: “People in Christ Will Go to Heave”.
So I must implore you to trust JESUS for your salvation! Recognize his death on the cross and His miraculous resurrection from the grave. Believe that God did that for your salvation. Tell Him in prayer that you want to be saved. And in surrender of your sinful life, enjoy a new fresh start at life by turning from your sin and being baptized.
I really like this thought from Randy Alcorn to wrap up this conversation on Heaven. He says, “You are made for a person and a place. Jesus is the person, and Heaven is the place. They are a package—they come together. You cannot get Heaven without Jesus, or Jesus without Heaven.”
**If this has been helpful for you, I’d love to hear from you. Share your thoughts and/or questions in the comment section below.**
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