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The Daily Word of Righteousness
Mansions in Heaven?, #2
Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? (I Corinthians 3:16)
Nowhere in the New Testament is it stated that Heaven is the Father's house. But several passages refer to Christ and to us as the eternal Temple of God.
What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? (I Corinthians 6:19)
And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. (II Corinthians 6:16)
Ye also, as lively [living] stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ. (I Peter 2:5)
Nowhere is it stated that Christ is building fine houses for us in heaven. When Jesus said "I go to prepare a place for you" He was speaking of going to the cross, and then of the sprinkling of His blood in the Presence of God so we may be received into God and become an inseparable part of God and of Christ (Hebrews 9:23,24).
In John 14:3, Jesus promised, "I will come again, and receive you unto myself." This is not the coming of Christ in the clouds of heaven. John 14:18-23, which is part of the context of John 14:3, shows that the coming referred to here is the coming of the Father and Christ to make Their abode in the believers. This is the spiritual fulfillment of the Old Testament feast of Tabernacles (Leviticus 23:39-43).
To claim that John 14:2 is referring to going to Paradise to live in a splendid house is to remove this verse from its context.
The Greek term translated mansion, in John 14:2, has nothing to do with a structure, whether splendid or dilapidated. The term indicates a place of remaining or abiding.
The Greek noun translated mansion is found but twice in the New Testament: in John 14:2, and again in John 14:23 where it is translated abode.
John 14:23 explains John 14:2. It is we who are the mansions, the chariots of God. It is we who are the places in which God in Christ may find His eternal rest (Psalms 68:18; Isaiah 66:1,2; Hebrews 4:1).
The verb related to the Greek noun we are discussing is employed in John 15:4-7 and John 14:10. It is translated abide .
If we are to be consistent with the use of the English word mansion as the translation of the Greek noun and its corresponding verb, we have the following:
"But the Father that mansions in me, he doeth the works" (John 14:10).
"We will come unto him, and make our mansion with him" (John 14:23).
"Mansion in me, and I in you" (John 15:4).
When we die we may, if we are among the saved, go to a beautiful home in Paradise. There is no doubt, according to the teaching of the Scriptures, that the rewards for obedient, faithful discipleship to the Lord Jesus will overwhelm the saint with joy and glory. God knows each of us well and He has prepared our rewards in terms of His personal knowledge of our deepest, strongest desires.
Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. (Psalms 37:4)
Our crowns and other rewards are tailored carefully to us as an individual. They will not be arbitrary riches bestowed on us apart from the intimate knowledge God has of the longings of our personality.
If we delight ourselves in the Lord, He shall give us the desires of our heart.
No good thing will God withhold from the person who walks uprightly before Him.
Some trustworthy saints have, in their visions, beheld glorious mansions of light in Paradise. We do not doubt their revelations. Our point is not that there are no mansions in Heaven.
Our point is that we should not be preaching that the goal of the Gospel of the Kingdom of God is eternal residence in a mansion in Heaven. The thought of Christ building magnificent houses for us in Paradise has no foundation in the Scriptures, either Old Testament or New Testament.
However, the idea that God is building an eternal dwelling place for Himself, of which Christ is the chief Cornerstone and we are living stones, has support in both the Old Testament and the New Testament.
And let them make me a sanctuary; that I may dwell among them. (Exodus 25:8)
In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit. (Ephesians 2:22)
The Father's eternal House, His dwelling place, is the Lord Jesus Christ. We Christians are the many places of abode (mansions) of the one House. We are the members of the Body of Christ. (from Mansions in Heaven?; It Is Time for a Reformation of Christian Thinking)