Packing Tips for the Trip to Heaven
What Not to Pack
A ghostly imperial guard of more than 7,000 life-size clay soldiers has been unearthed in mainland China. Archeologists consider it one of the most spectacular finds of the age. The royal army, standing in battle formation to protect the grave of China’s first emperor, Shih Huang Ti, is equipped with war chariots and weapons of wood and bronze. Horses, harnessed in gold and silver, lie in a pit near the tomb. Why such an elaborate burial ground? The emperor wanted to be able to take this army into the next world, the (afterlife) to enable him to establish an empire like that one in life.
Other cultures, such as the Egyptian Pharaohs, had similar beliefs. They felt a strong need to pack their tombs for life beyond the grave. Perhaps, there is something to be learned from their efforts to prepare for life beyond.
Heaven is a real place, not just a myth. God has promised heaven to faithful believers, in virtually every book of the New Testament. What preparations are you making now to lay hold of the promise of heaven when life is over. Have you started packing for Heaven? First, let us consider some things not to pack for Heaven.
Do not bother to pack any tissue. Why? Because there will be no tears in heaven. Revelation 21:4 states, “And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.”
“Neither shall there be any more pain”, so leave the aspirin behind.
On every trip you make it is a good idea to pack something to eat and drink. Again, the book of Revelation tells us that the inhabitants of Heaven will neither hunger or thirst. No need to save packing room for snacks and drinks (Rev. 22:1,2)
Our lives have become so involved and fast paced that it is hard to get away from work, even when on a long trip. Packing some paper work in a brief case to help catch up on some overdue duties is not that unusual. In the United States there are an estimated 40,000 different occupations. The good news is, Heaven is a place of rest from our labors. One of the seven beatitudes in the book of Revelation states: “Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.” ‘Yes,’ says the Spirit, ‘that they may rest from their labors, and their works follow them.’” (Rev. 14:13). This in no way means that there will be nothing to do in heaven. Instead there will be freedom to worship God without the interference of work schedules and persecution.
It is wise to make sure you have enough cash, travelers checks, credit or debit cards before you embark on a trip. The great things about going to heaven is, your money is no good in your Father’s house. No need to pack money for the trip to Heaven because the streets are paved with gold.
Consider the following story: A rich man once asked the Lord to let him take some of his possessions to heaven. The Lord finally allowed him to take one suitcase. The man decided to fill the suitcase with gold. When he got to the gates, Peter told him he couldn’t take anything with him. The man protested that the Lord told him he could bring one suitcase. Peter said, “Show me what you brought.” The man opened the suitcase and showed Peter the gold. “Well,” Peter said, “I guess you can go in but I don’t understand why you brought pavement with you.”
Surely Heaven is a spiritual realm where the streets are not literally paved with gold. However, it is a place that is beautiful and filled with every rich blessing of God. Money is a tool of this material realm not a treasure in heaven.
When Gypsy king Ale Mitchell died at the age of 63. His body was buried in Bedford, Ohio. Fellow gypsies placed $100 bills in his lifeless hands. “The money will buy the king’s entry into heaven.” the Gypsies said. Money can get a man into many places today, but money cannot get a man into heaven. No we can’t take it with us. Have you ever seen a hearse pulling a U-Haul? Jesus informed His disciples in the Sermon on the Mount, “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matt. 6:19-21).
Unfortunately, too many men and women are so attached to things that they can never let go of this world so they can pack for Heaven. When men go up in balloons they take bags of sand with them, and when they want to rise higher they throw them out. There are a great many Christians who have got too many bags of sand, and to rise they need to throw some out.
With skin cancer such a concern for many, packing a hat when going on a trip is a healthy idea. Unless, that is, you are packing for heaven. In heaven God will award each of His faithful children a crown of life (Rev 2: 10; 2 Tim 4:6-8). In his letters to the seven churches of Asia Jesus told the church at Smyrna: “Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life” (Rev 2: 10).
Since the body needs constant upkeep and maintenance it is a good idea to pack some personal hygiene products like deodorant. If you are packing for heaven leave out the deodorant. Why? Man is made up of two parts. When we die, the physical body remains here in the grave and the spirit returns to God who gave it. The Bible speaks of us receiving a “new” body. One not the same but of different quality and type. It will be…
▸ An incorruptible body (1 Cor. 15:42,51-54)
▸ A spiritual body 1 Cor 15:44)
▸ Like His (Christ’s) glorious body (Phil. 3:20,21)
If your travels require that you camp out or drive during the night it is practical to pack a flashlight. Yet, this is totally unnecessary if you are packing for heaven, because “There shall be no night there: They need no lamp nor light of the sun, for the Lord God gives them light. And they shall reign forever and ever” (Rev. 22:5).
When packing for heaven you will not even need a calendar or a watch. Because if Heaven is your destination, when you get there you will only spend one day, and that day will last forever.
– by Daniel R. Vess
Truly in Vain Is Salvation Hoped for from . . .
▸ A politician or political party
▸ Wall Street
▸ Military might
▸ Our net worth or economic savvy
▸ Government programs
▸ The Second Amendment
▸ Popularity and fame
▸ The worship of nature
▸ Exercise and fitness
▸ The appeal of our good looks
▸ The importance of our occupation or position
▸ Our national identity
▸ The Supreme Court
▸ Ethnicity and race
▸ Science and technology
▸ Any religious figure besides Jesus Christ (even those claiming to represent Him)
▸ Family members and friends.
In Jeremiah 3:23, the prophet writes, “Truly in vain is salvation hoped for from the hills, and from the multitude of mountains: truly in the Lord our God is the salvation of Israel.” Jeremiah’s brethren put all their eggs in the wrong baskets. They neglected to see where true hope was found and where saving faith was to be put. Their misguided trust led to their downfall. It cannot be otherwise in any generation, including our own.
We may never say we put our trust in anything besides God, but “the proof is in the pudding.” We demonstrate what’s first and foremost to us every day, in word and deed. Ultimate deliverance from our greatest trials, struggles, and challenges comes from only one source. Ultimate deliverance from our greatest trials, struggles, and challenges comes from only one source. Jeremiah succinctly identifies that source as God.
News & Notes
● Morning’s Lesson: Walking in Wisdom Text: Eph. 5:15-21
● Contribution Scripture: Acts 11:27-30
● Tonight’s Sermon Dan Fonetnot will be: Jesus is Lord and Christ
● Business Meeting this evening after services
● Tommy Lavender was restored to the Lord and asked for prayers last Sunday
● Ralph Olguin’s brother has passed away.