We mortals have a hard time with eternity. We keep speculating about what it means and what it will be like. The Bible talks more about heaven than it does “eternity”. The Bible tells us that Christ came out of eternity and into “time” when he came into the world.
God created time for our benefit. Where would we be without time? We need time to get things done at the last minute. We need to be on time. We use time wisely.Waste time. Kill time. Make time. Race against time. Have a hard time. A nice time. We do things all the time. We can be ahead of time. Call a friend any time.
Solomon writes about “time and chance” in Ecclesiastes ,
“time and chance” happens to us all; and that there’s a “time for everything purpose under heaven.”
God gave us time because He knew we couldn’t handle eternity. Yet.
In eternity there is no time. There’s just “now”. God is at the Inquisition right now. He is talking with Adam and Eve as I write this post. He is answering prayers. He is telling Abraham he will have a son. He is creating the universe now. With God, there’s just now.
That’s why Jesus could say,
“‘Your father Abraham rejoiced that he would see my day. He saw it and was glad.’ So the Jews said to him, ‘You are not yet fifty years old, and have you seen Abraham?’ ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am.” John 8:56-58
That’s why Jesus could say to them,
“I am the way, the truth and the life.” John 14:6
God is in eternity. He is Eternal. That’s how we can call him The Omnipresent One. He is present in all places at the same time. He is the Omniscient One. He has infinite and universal knowledge and knows all things.
We don’t understand it. We’re not supposed to. But God wants us to live with an eternal perspective.
Question of the day: What’s the difference, to you, between heaven and eternity?
There is a chorus which says
” Heaven is a wonderful place
Filled with glory and grace.
I want to see my Savior’s face
Heaven is a wonderful place. ”
Eternity? It is equal to “existing forever”, not equal to a place called heaven.
Thank you for your comments, Evelyn, and you are exactly right about the difference between heaven and eternity.
You said and I quote: “The Bible talks more about heaven than it does “eternity”.
Heaven and eternity are both the same which makes them synonyms with each other, To talk about heaven is to exclaim eternity.
2 Corinthians 5:1
For we know that if our temporary, earthly dwelling is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal dwelling in the heavens, not made with hands.
I was wondering why do you think by reading scripture that you came to the conclusion that both words can be dissected as two different meaning.
Thank you for your thoughtful response to my post, Eternity: what a concept! I appreciate your dropping by For His Glory and hope you’ll return to be blessed often. And thank you for including those wonderful words from 2 Corinthians 5:1. It certainly speaks of our earthly “tent” as Paul calls them, and heaven and eternity.
May I ask you to consider some further thoughts of mine about the post?
As I read Scripture I believe the Bible speaks of heaven as “where” we’re going to live, and eternity as “how” we’re going to live.
The Bible speaks considerably more about heaven than eternity. In fact heaven appears 436 times in the NASB, while eternity appears only six times.
You may recall what Paul said in Ephesians 4:1 “For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love.”
.” This passage as well as others leads me to believe that I have the assurance that we were created in Christ before we were ever born–in eternity. And the Bible also teaches that we will live with Him forever eternally.
Would you agree with me that many folks, including me, don’t understand much about eternity?
Another thing about eternity we do know is the fate of non-believers. The Bible teaches that unrepentant sinners and non believers will also live eternally separated (how they’ll live) from God in hell (where they’ll live). The difference in the two eternities is that believers such as you and I will live eternally with God. Where? In heaven as Jesus described so vividly in the New Testament. Non-believers’ eternity and our eternity will be worlds apart. Literally. The story of Lazarus and the rich man in Luke 16 I think bears that out.
So, as I read scripture I believe there are two eternities. One eternity is ours, in fellowship and love with God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit and all His children forever. And we’ll live out that eternity in heaven.
The other eternity is going to be the fiery pit of hell where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Those who bear that eternity (how) will suffer that agony and regret forever.
in hell (where).
“Then the King will say to those on His left, ‘Depart from me, accursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels.’ . . . These will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.” (Matthew 25:41, 46)
Again, thank you for taking the time to thoughtfully comment on Eternity: what a concept. I enjoyed reading your thoughts. I hope this reply helps you better understand the basis for my writing about eternity and heaven in this post. I am always open to discussions emanating from posts I write. We are all always learning and hopefully growing in the sanctification process God orchestrates for us.
Thank you for your wonderful response and I agree with you about being two eternities…for believers in God’s presence and the other in the Lake of Fire. Here is something for you to think about: People ask “why does a loving God sends people to hell forever. Why not let them be there for a short time than vanish them”. My answer would be “When God made Adam (the first man) He breathed on him and gave Adam a spirit and he became a living soul. The Word of God is eternal because as 2 Timothy says God breathed so since God breathed into Adam and gave him a spirit…guess what? Whatever comes from God is eternal. I would continue….since the person is in hell in sin and sin needs to be punished and the person never dies than the conclusion is that the punishment is forever according to Revelation 14:11”. Getting back to heaven & eternity…to understand those two words we must always read it in its complete context or else one can pretzel any verse one likes which by the way the Jehovah Witnesses love to do. In its context when referring to heaven or even hell eternity is present in the since that whoever dwells their dwells their eternally. Eternal life will be spent in heaven and in heaven one has eternal life…you see one and the same.
My mind cannot fathom eternity but I sure like knowing about heaven where I’ll spend it. 🙂