To the editor:
Here are some samples from the Bible of those who will or will not be occupants of heaven. They are given clearly and concisely in two different ways.
First, it says who will not be. Jesus says, “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 7:21). I Corinthians 6:9-10 and 13:1-3 identifies an even wider list of exclusions. Galatians 5:18-21 list the characteristics of those who do not live according to the Holy Spirit. Hebrews 11:6 identifies people without faith; finally, the sober identification of the residents of the Lake of Fire (Revelations 21:8).
The other way has a more positive note: In Matthew 12:46-50, Jesus says, “Who is my mother and who are my brothers? He then gives the answer: “Those who do the will of my Father.” He also says that we must love Him first above all others (Matthew 22:37). He gives clear definition to what this means in John 14:15 when He says, “If you love me, you must keep my commandments” and in John 15:12, “You must love one another as I have loved you.”
It seems to me that future occupants of heaven should be getting along better on the earth than we do; instead of division, there should be unity in marriage, family, churches, community, education, politics, etc. Do we place allegiance to our own wills over Jesus’? If so, then I wonder where this puts us in terms of our eternal dwelling place? I think the answer is obvious.