Friday, March 25, 2011

Studies in John chapters 14-16 - 14:1-4

John 14:1-4
Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. (2) In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. (3) And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. (4) And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.

If you have faith in God, you can likewise have the same confidence and faith in Me. . .

In verse 2, the Greek word translated 'mansions', is only found twice in the Bible both times here in chapter 14 of John. The other instance is:

John 14:23
Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.

Here it is translated as 'abode'.

Here is the Strong's Greek dictionary entry for the word:

From G3306; a staying, that is, residence (the act or the place): - abode, mansion.

The verse says, "In my Father's house are many mansions. . .". . . In my Father's house are many abodes. . .many places to live. . .many accommodations.

Jesus was never one who places importance on riches and finery. He doesn't strike me as one who required or desired extravagance. I think the word mansions, reflect the heart of the translators rather than the intent of Jesus.

If there is one thing that you can tell about God from His creation, it is that it is a creation of variety. We come in all sizes, colors, shapes, demeanors, etc. etc. etc.

The classic portrayal of heaven as marbled halls, with the saints dressed in white robes endlessly softly strumming their lyres, would after about 30 minutes become hell for me. Likewise I have no desire at all to live in a mansion. Quite quickly I would be crawling out of my skin if you put me in a palace with gold faucets and velvet curtains. . . a little rustic cabin, with a fireplace in the Smokey Mountains. . . now that's another story.

But He goes to prepare a place of many abodes. I do not believe that Heaven will not be a cookie cutter heaven, for we are not cookie cutter people. There will undoubtedly be bushmen, Inuit, desert nomadic peoples, Tibetans, Indians from the Amazon rain forest. . .and though our physical bodies will not be found in heaven, even our spirits are vastly different in what makes us comfortable and happy.

I do not believe that we will lose all our individuality when we go to heaven. . . there will be many abodes in heaven, for Jesus has gone there to prepare them for us. . .It will not be a place of boredom and sameness, but a place of endless wonder and joy in His presence. . .

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