This file is an excerpt from a message delivered by Robert Hey of Merced, California, as he ministered the funeral of his father. It is powerful
picture of what the first day in heaven could be like based upon what has been revealed in the Scriptures.
First Day in Heaven
Before flying here from California on Friday, I asked our 10 year old daughter Rebecca what she would ask Grandpa or say to him if it were possible to talk to him now that he has entered heaven. Rebecca thought for a minute and said: "I would tell him that I love him and miss him, and then I would ask him, 'Grandpa, what is heaven really like?'" I told her that I would say the same thing. As I thought about this on the airplane, I got out some paper and began writing what Dad's first day in heaven might be like. What I wrote is based mostly on what the Bible teaches about heaven from the last two chapters in the Bible: Revelation, chapters 21 and
22. In fact, when I flew home a week before Dad died, these two chapters were the last Scriptures I read to him there in the hospital.
I wrote this as if Dad were talking to Rebecca in answering her question, but I believe his message would be the same to all of us. It's based on Scripture with a little of my imagination thrown in.
"Hello Rebecca. I love you too with a perfect love. Don't worry about me because I'm in good hands and feeling no more pain. I want you to know that the Bible really is true when it says in heaven: 'There shall no longer be any death; there shall no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away.' Your Daddy read that verse to me right before I died. Now I am completely happy. As I breathed my last breath there on that hospital bed, Grandma was holding my hand and the nurse was by my bed."
"Suddenly, I saw a bright light. It was the angel who had watched over me my entire life coming to take me away. He wore a dazzling white robe that radiated God's glory, and he signaled for me to come up to him. Yes, Rebecca he did have beautiful white wings. As I went up from the hospital, I hardly noticed the blue and white earth slipping away behind us. We traveled at a rate of speed many times the speed of light. We traversed the entire universe in a flash of time."
"Before I could even begin to grasp the incredible beauty of the universe with its vast galaxies, I looked ahead and saw heaven and the beautiful celestial city, called the New Jerusalem in the Bible. Somehow I knew I was coming home. The brilliant colors and the magnificent lights coming from the heavenly city were unlike any I had ever seen on earth. It looked like a translucent diamond or multiprismed crystal shining with God's greatness. In fact, the walls of the city were made of solid diamond."
"As we approached the entrance way, I noticed a huge gate made of solid pearl. The angel motioned for me to enter and I was so excited I could hardly stand it. I suddenly found myself walking on a street made of pure transparent gold as clear as glass. I marveled at the architecture of the buildings. Everything was so perfect. While on earth I always enjoyed making things, so I was curious about what was holding this place up. I decided to examine the foundation. To my amazement the foundation was made of 12 precious gems, each hundreds of feet thick. I noticed the color of Grandma's birthstone in one of the foundations."
"The city itself was nearly 1500 miles high, 1500 miles wide, and 1500 miles long. I saw the crystal clear River of Life with waterfalls cascading down from one level to the next. The Tree of Life lined the banks of the river, and I was able to eat of its fruit. During my final days on earth I could not eat, and it was so refreshing to eat fruit from the Tree of Life. I noticed beautiful flowers everywhere in the city. I heard the most beautiful multi-harmonious singing I'd ever heard. The heavenly choir was praising the Almighty God and I began to sing along with them. Joy flooded my soul!"
"The angel seemed to be escorting me somewhere. Off to the right the angel pointed to an exquisite mansion off in the distance. He said, 'Harry, that one is yours, where you will live and serve God.' I was overwhelmed and speechless. I finally asked the angel, 'You mean God built a mansion just for me?' 'Yes, Harry,' he said, 'Just for you; that's how much God loves you.'"
"We continued moving in an upward direction near the apex of the city. At last, there He was, the One I had waited to see. The One who spoke the universe into existence by His mighty power, and the One who formed me in my mother's womb, was seated on a royal blue sapphire throne with hundreds of angels ministering all around Him and millions of saints praising Him. It was Jesus Christ, the King of kings and Lord of lords. As I looked at His face, it was like looking at a thousand suns, and I was drawn to Him like a magnet."
"His robe was beautiful and its train filled the throne room. Love in its purest form radiated from His Holy Presence. He held out His hands and motioned for me to come forward. As I approached the throne, I saw nail prints in His hands from over 2,000 years ago when he died for you Rebecca, and for me in order to reconcile us to God. I bowed my knee before Him and said, 'Jesus, my Lord and Savior, I praise your Holy Name. Your majesty, thank you for shedding your blood and dying for me on that cross to take away my sins. Thank you for coming into my life and giving me a new nature.'"
"Then King Jesus spoke to me in a majestic voice that sounded like thunder or the sound of a roaring waterfall, yet it was full of compassion and love. He said, 'Harry, my precious child, for the last 70 years I've loved you and I'll love you for all eternity. Because you placed your faith in Me on earth, you have eternal life. Welcome home. Enter into the joy of your Lord.'"
"Well, Rebecca, that was my first day in heaven as measured by your time clock on earth, and what a day it was. We have no time here because there is no night or day and there is no sun or moon. God's glory lights the city. Everyone here is so happy. I never get tired anymore. I have perfect peace and joy. Rebecca, stay close to Jesus, read your Bible every day, and love Him with all your heart, mind, soul, and strength, and love your neighbor as you love yourself. Tell other people that Jesus loves them so much that He died to wash away their sins and rose again on the third day. Now He reigns over the entire universe and someday He is coming back to earth to destroy His enemies and set up a Kingdom that will never end."
"Rebecca, encourage everyone you know to receive Jesus Christ into their hearts while there is yet time. The days on earth pass so quickly. People need the Lord in the center of their lives, and they have no guarantee they will be alive tomorrow. Besides, serving God on earth is the most important thing you can do. Well, it's time for me to go. Someday you and your family and grandma and all those who have faith in Jesus Christ will join me here. I love you and I'll be waiting for you. Tell Grandma I love her."