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Is There an ĎA-Listí in Heaven?
The Christian Diarist ^ | November 17, 2013 | JP

Posted on 11/17/2013 7:49:23 AM PST by CHRISTIAN DIARIST

In a letter to newly planted churches in the Roman provinces of Galatia, Macedonia, Achaia and Asia, the Apostle Paul explained how lost souls might receive the gift of God, which is eternal life through Jesus Christ.

“If,” he advised, “you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”

Many, if not most, of us have received the gift of salvation; have the promise of everlasting life.

We look forward to heaven, which the Book of Revelation describes as having twelve gates of pearl and streets of pure gold.

We can hardly wait to take residence in the mansions that, according to the Gospel of John, the Lord Jesus has prepared before us.

But many, if not most, of us will find heaven very much different than we are expecting. We mistakenly believe heaven will be egalitarian; that all who are saved will enjoy the same standing in the hereafter.

But that’s not what the Word of God teaches. It promises us – it warns us – that heaven is a meritocracy.

That, while our salvation guarantees us a place in heaven, our works on this side of eternity determine what exactly that place will be in the hereafter.

Indeed, the Lord declared, “I am He who searches the minds and hearts. And I will give to each one of you according to your works.”

The Book of Matthew tells us the Son of Man will sit on the throne of His glory. That before Him all the nations will gather. That He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats.

That He well set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on His left. That those on His right hand will inherit the kingdom prepared for them. And that He will say to those on His left, “Depart from Me, you cursed.”

Those of us who are saved are the Lord’s sheep. An inheritance awaits us, everyone. But everyone does not have the same inheritance awaiting.

For some devote their lives to being good and faithful servants. To standing in the gap for the Lord. To fulfilling the Great Commission. To fighting a good fight, finishing the course set before them, and keeping the faith. To suffering persecution in the name of the Lord, even unto death.

There is laid up for those saints crowns of righteousness. They are on heaven’s A-list.

And it is written, “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man, the things God has prepared for those who love Him.”

Those who truly love Him are those who let their light so shine before men, that they might see their good works, and glorify the Father which is in heaven.

As to those of us who do not lead such a purpose-driven life, who do not labor in the Lord’s harvest fields bringing the lost to Christ, who do not feed the hungry, offer drink to the thirsty, take in the stranger, clothe the naked, visit the sick and minister to the prisoner, there is a place prepared for us, too, in eternity.

But let us not delude ourselves that we can do little or nothing in service to the Lord and enjoy the same rewards earned by such great men (and women) of God as Abraham, Moses, David and Esther or John the Baptist, the Virgin Mary, the Apostle Paul and St. Peter.

Papias of Hierapolis, who authored five books on Christian oral tradition, who said he received the sayings of the apostles from those who accompanied them, taught that “there is this distinction between the habitation of those who produce an hundred-fold, and that of those who produce sixty-fold, and that of those who produce thirty-fold.”

The first, wrote Papias, “will be taken up into the heavens.” The second, “will dwell in Paradise.” The last “will inhabit the city.” Everywhere, he explained, “the Savior will be seen, according as they shall be worthy who see Him.”

Salvation earns us a place in the city, with its “splendor” beyond anything we have seen or experienced in this fallen world.

But more is required of those who will spend eternity in paradise, with the “delights” far beyond the splendor of the city. And much more is required to be “deemed worthy of an abode in heaven,” where God, the Father, sits on His throne, and His Son, Christ the Lord, sits on His right hand

That’s why the Lord, Himself, advised us, encouraged us, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy,” but “store up treasure in heaven,” where our good works will be eternally rewarded.


TOPICS: General Discusssion; History; Ministry/Outreach; Theology
KEYWORDS: christ; heaven; saints; salvation
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All too many of us do nothing other than make a once a week appearance in church (if that). But the Lord expects those of us whom He has saved to be salt and light in this fallen world of ours.
1 posted on 11/17/2013 7:49:23 AM PST by CHRISTIAN DIARIST
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To: CHRISTIAN DIARIST
Pray that we may see the Good Works, which God has prepared for those who love Him, to Walk in. And to do them in excellence. For He alone is excellence, being the cause of them and worthy of throwing down our crowns - Because it will be obvious that He has done them through us and deserves the glory alone.
2 posted on 11/17/2013 8:01:44 AM PST by sr4402
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To: CHRISTIAN DIARIST
That, while our salvation guarantees us a place in heaven, our works on this side of eternity determine what exactly that place will be in the hereafter.

This sounds more like the Quran.

3 posted on 11/17/2013 8:02:04 AM PST by James C. Bennett (An Australian.)
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To: CHRISTIAN DIARIST

Forget what Paul said. What did Christ say?


4 posted on 11/17/2013 8:08:27 AM PST by ARA
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To: CHRISTIAN DIARIST
... twelve gates of pearl and streets of pure gold.
5 posted on 11/17/2013 8:19:07 AM PST by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: oh8eleven
If the Army and the Navy
Ever look on Heaven's scenes;
They will find the streets are guarded
By United States Marines.

While the Air Force is still out on the golf course.

6 posted on 11/17/2013 8:25:58 AM PST by Excellence (All your database are belong to us.)
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To: ARA

Forget what Paul said. What did Christ say?


Amen to that.


7 posted on 11/17/2013 8:39:02 AM PST by ravenwolf
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To: ARA

“..Forget what Paul said...”

How do we know what Christ said without Paul?


8 posted on 11/17/2013 8:46:11 AM PST by stonehouse01
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To: stonehouse01

That’s why you must have greater faith in Paul than Jesus so that you may think you are believing what Jesus said.


9 posted on 11/17/2013 8:57:52 AM PST by James C. Bennett (An Australian.)
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To: ravenwolf

What Paul said is what Christ said. Why would anyone want to forget that?


10 posted on 11/17/2013 9:06:32 AM PST by count-your-change (you don't have to be brilliant, not being stupid is enough)
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To: ARA

Read Matthew 20 for the answer.


11 posted on 11/17/2013 9:11:41 AM PST by sportutegrl (Go suck on a slurpee, Obama)
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To: stonehouse01
How do we know what Christ said without Paul?

Actually, that has to be the other way around : )

12 posted on 11/17/2013 9:20:03 AM PST by roamer_1 (Globalism is just socialism in a business suit.)
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To: ravenwolf
Admittedly, Paul wrote two-thirds of our New Testament, the third he did not write is its foundation.

As to Heaven's hierarchy, it's as difficult to imagine a forlorn longing for better, unattainable portions (and beyond time) were one to barely arrive there at all, clawing at the door jam and smelling of smoke, "as though by fire."

Eternity is a long time to mill about, even in the Big Lobby.

13 posted on 11/17/2013 9:22:46 AM PST by Prospero (Si Deus trucido mihi, ego etiam fides Deus.)
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To: CHRISTIAN DIARIST

Be ecstatic and gleefully thankful to be a backbencher in heaven.

I will carry water for Moses, John the Baptist, the Apostles, etc...any old time....every time for eternity just for the mercy of being let in!

The depth of passion and gratefulness that I feel for this unwarranted “gift” is impossible for me to express. I cling to His promise like a life preserver in a flood.

Mark reporting Jesus’ words on “earning it”

The Parable of the Vineyard Workers
1For the kingdom of heaven is like unto a man that is an householder, which went out early in the morning to hire labourers into his vineyard. 2And when he had agreed with the labourers for a penny a day, he sent them into his vineyard. 3And he went out about the third hour, and saw others standing idle in the marketplace, 4And said unto them; Go ye also into the vineyard, and whatsoever is right I will give you. And they went their way. 5Again he went out about the sixth and ninth hour, and did likewise. 6And about the eleventh hour he went out, and found others standing idle, and saith unto them, Why stand ye here all the day idle? 7They say unto him, Because no man hath hired us. He saith unto them, Go ye also into the vineyard; and whatsoever is right, that shall ye receive.

8So when even was come, the lord of the vineyard saith unto his steward, Call the labourers, and give them their hire, beginning from the last unto the first. 9And when they came that were hired about the eleventh hour, they received every man a penny. 10But when the first came, they supposed that they should have received more; and they likewise received every man a penny. 11And when they had received it, they murmured against the goodman of the house, 12Saying, These last have wrought but one hour, and thou hast made them equal unto us, which have borne the burden and heat of the day. 13But he answered one of them, and said, Friend, I do thee no wrong: didst not thou agree with me for a penny? 14Take that thine is, and go thy way: I will give unto this last, even as unto thee. 15Is it not lawful for me to do what I will with mine own? Is thine eye evil, because I am good? 16So the last shall be first, and the first last: for many be called, but few chosen.

Now that says it all.

I caution you to not brag on your works, or even seeking to make them known to others. I caution you to not extort others to “do more” as it leads to vanity, “one upmanship” and legalism as with the Pharisees.

Jesus is not a fan of the lads jockeying for position all the time....if fact he condemns it. Still, they never learn.

Learn. The values and vanity of this world...even worrying about who will first to last in Heaven are childishness to the Lord.


14 posted on 11/17/2013 9:29:20 AM PST by Lowell1775
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To: CHRISTIAN DIARIST

A bit more about not worrying over and A-List in Heaven.

I don’t want to run the club. Don’t need to. I know the owner personally. He will always let his friends backstage.


Mark 9:33-37

“33 And he came to Capernaum: and being in the house he asked them, What was it that ye disputed among yourselves by the way?

34 But they held their peace: for by the way they had disputed among themselves, who should be the greatest.

35 And he sat down, and called the twelve, and saith unto them, If any man desire to be first, the same shall be last of all, and servant of all.

36 And he took a child, and set him in the midst of them: and when he had taken him in his arms, he said unto them,

37 Whosoever shall receive one of such children in my name, receiveth me: and whosoever shall receive me, receiveth not me, but him that sent me.”


It the simple everyday things we do, not raising armies, cathedrals, or revivals in His name that pleases Him.


15 posted on 11/17/2013 9:36:38 AM PST by Lowell1775
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To: CHRISTIAN DIARIST

I don’t know any other opinion ever found a foothold among bible-believing Christians. Yet, there it is.


16 posted on 11/17/2013 9:42:37 AM PST by chesley
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To: ARA

What did He say?

Anything that contradicts what Paul said? Where is it?

Paul was an apostle of the Lord. His words are pretty authoritative. IMO


17 posted on 11/17/2013 9:44:02 AM PST by chesley
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To: James C. Bennett

No it doesn’t.

Salvation is free to all.

Rewards are just that. Rewards for faithful service.

Some of us will live in the Beverly Hills of Heaven; others in the slums (still better than anything we can imagine, IMO)

And then there are the lost, who just won’t make the cut, so to speak.


18 posted on 11/17/2013 9:46:35 AM PST by chesley
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To: ARA

CD quoted Jesus Christ in his first post. What’s your point about Paul?


19 posted on 11/17/2013 9:47:13 AM PST by redleghunter
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To: chesley

Unless you don’t rely on secondary sources for your knowledge about a certain individual, then, by simple logical deduction, without greater faith in those conveying you the information about that particular individual, you cannot have faith in that individual.


20 posted on 11/17/2013 9:51:50 AM PST by James C. Bennett (An Australian.)
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