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In our last message in this series, “Heaven in the Books of Exodus to Deuteronomy,” we discussed that the Hebrew word for heaven is “shamayim,” pronounced “sha-MAH’-yim.” We examined the fourteen occurrences of the word “heaven” in the book of Exodus, the one occurrence of “heaven” in the book of Leviticus, and the first thirteen occurrences of “heaven” in the first four chapters of the book of Deuteronomy. Along with our previous study of the first forty-one occurrences of the word “heaven” as they appear in the book of Genesis, this study took us through the first sixty-nine occurrences of the Hebrew word shemayim. From these studies we found what seem to be the following five definitions of the word “heaven.”

1. The exalted place where the LORD is and where angels dwell.

2. The sky, which is lifted up above the earth.

3. The greater universe, where the sun, moon, stars, planets, and galaxies exist.

4. Exalted beings or rulers, whether rulers of heaven or rulers on earth.

5. God Himself, Who is sometimes called heaven or the heavens.

Yet there is much more to learn about this word from the remainder of its occurrences in Scripture, so in this message we will continue our examination of this important word by continuing on from chapter 5 of the book of Deuteronomy. Read the rest of this entry »

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In our last message in this series, “Heaven in the Book of Genesis,” we discussed that the Hebrew word for heaven is “shamayim,” pronounced “sha-MAH’-yim,” and the first occurrence of this word is in the very first verse of the Bible, Genesis 1:1. We examined this verse and the first forty-one occurrences of the word “heaven” as they appear in the book of Genesis. From our examination of all Genesis we found what seem to be the following three definitions of the word “heaven.”

1. The exalted place where the LORD is, and where angels dwell.

2. The sky, which is lifted up above the earth.

3. The greater universe, where the sun, moon, stars, planets, and galaxies exist. Read the rest of this entry »

I received the following question:

Phil 3:20 For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:

In this passage you say that “heaven” is plural.

How did you know that this is a plural word?

Greek is en ouranois. Read the rest of this entry »

I received the following question:

Phil. 3:20 “For our citizenship (conversation) is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.

How do you interpret this verse?

Thanks for the good question.

First, let me offer you The Resultant Version translation, both in a straight translation and in paraphrase.

Philippians 3:20. For the acquired and developed character which is ours is already existing among celestials, and it is out of this character that we assiduously and patiently wait it out for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.

Philippians 3:20 paraphrase. Read the rest of this entry »

I received the following question:

Can you elaborate more on II Cor. 5:8 and Phil. 3:20
A. Absent from the body (did read Sellers’ definition) but not sure.
B. Citizenship ( Greek meaning )

II Corinthians 5 is a complicated subject. It usually takes me at least 20 minutes to explain it, and it would probably take a full article to set forth what I think it is talking about. First things first, though. Have you read Mr. Sellers’ article on “Absent From the Body”? This article sets forth more or less what I would say about the issue. It is posted here:
http://www.seedandbread.org/images/stories/SS/SS12%20Absent%20From%20The%20Body.pdf

I believe this article was also sent out with the latest Bulletin from the Word of Truth Ministry, if you are on their mailing list. Read the rest of this entry »

I received the following question:

I have a quick question concerning heaven. You know how the word heaven is used today in the Christian church how that people say they are going to heaven or that their relatives are in heaven.

I understand that the word heaven appears in the Bible over 600 times, are there any scripture verses that has the word heaven and that believer go to heaven at dead in the same verse ? I don’t think so, just want to get someone else’s opinion. Appreciate you quick response.

You are correct. No, there are no verses that say this anywhere in the Bible. The verses they stake all on are II Corinthians 5:8, misquoted as “Absent from the body, present with the Lord.” This says nothing about death or heaven, and besides being misquoted is badly translated. John 14:2, “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.” There is nothing saying the “Father’s house” is heaven. In fact, in John 2, the phrase (the only other place in the Word it is used) is clearly speaking of the temple in Jerusalem. Philippians 3:20, “For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.” This verse is the “impregnable fortress” that they try to hide behind to rescue their traditional ideas. However, the meaning of the verse is far from clear, and to say that we wait for a Savior from heaven is a far cry from saying we are going there, either at death or any other time. Other than these few, misused and abused verses, there is no evidence of anyone going to heaven upon death in the Bible.

Thanks for the great question.

enoch02I received the following question:

Nathan, I have over time greatly appreciated your help to us in study of God’s Word.

Recently had the pleasure of listening and studying your talk on the Resurrections at the 2015 conference.

I have a question and need for clarifying a couple of points.

You explained that you believed Enoch was translated to heaven without seeing death.

Did you mean that he was translated so quickly he did not see death, or that he is now permanently in heaven with the Lord and did not die, but went thru a change into an immortal body? Some type of out resurrection/translation? Could Paul also have had similar as Enoch translation if he desired?

The faith chapter mentions a number of people of faith, but it says these ….ALL
DIED not as yet receiving the promises, of these, Enoch is mentioned. Was he also one that died not having received the promises, or are we to assume he is excluded from the list that died. It did say these all died?

Thanks for your input on this. Read the rest of this entry »

angelart02I received the following question:

Hi Nathan, clear this up for me from the last Bible study you said Satan at one time was guarding Gods throne and he was a Cherubim. In Isa. 6:1-7 it has the Seraphim hovering over God’s throne and they have six wings the highest order. That would make the Cherubim the 2nd order of Angels. Talk to you soon.

Thanks for the good question!

I would agree that the cherubim are guarding the throne of God, as we see in Ezekiel 10, which reveals that the living creatures surrounding the throne of chapter 1 are the cherubim. Read the rest of this entry »

ghostman02I received the following questions:

Many of my friends are arguing with me about the reason we are resurrected is for our heavenly bodies but not because we are not in heaven when we die (sheol).  I don’t really know what to say to this?

I’ve been reading in Hebrews that Hezekiah was pleading not to die, but if he thought he was going to heaven when he died why would he plead to not die, right?  Does this make sense for an argument against not going to heaven when you die?

Any help please?

Your friends are arguing, not based on Bible truth, but on the doctrines and traditions of men. Satan told Eve, “You will not surely die.” Genesis 3:4. Literally in Hebrew, this reads, “Dying you will not die.” Eve believed him…that dying, she would not be dead, but be in some other state, “like God.” (verse 5.) And the vast majority of people on earth, including most Christians, still believe what Satan said rather than what God said. They refuse to believe that death results in being dead, instead insisting that the dead are still very much alive. Read the rest of this entry »

goingup02I received the following question:

I have a quick question concerning heaven.  You know how the word heaven is used today in the Christian church how that people say they are going to heaven or that their relatives are in heaven.

I understand that the word heaven appears in the Bible over 600 times, are there any scripture verses that has the word heaven and that believer go to heaven at dead in the same verse?  I don’t think so; just want to get someone else’s opinion.  Appreciate your quick response.

You are correct. No, there are no verses that say this anywhere in the Bible. The verses they stake all on are II Corinthians 5:8, misquoted as “Absent from the body, present with the Lord.” This says nothing about death or heaven, and besides being misquoted is badly translated. John 14:2, “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.” There is nothing saying the “Father’s house” is heaven. In fact, in John 2, the phrase (the only other place in the Word it is used) is clearly speaking of the temple in Jerusalem. Philippians 3:20, “For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.” This verse is the “impregnable fortress” that they try to hide behind to rescue their traditional ideas. However, the meaning of the verse is far from clear, and to say that we wait for a Savior from heaven is a far cry from saying we are going there, either at death or any other time. Other than these few, misused and abused verses, there is no evidence of anyone going to heaven upon death in the Bible.

Thanks for the great question.