If you asked a dozen people what they know about heaven, you’d probably get all sorts of answers. Even Christians have various ideas about what it is, where it’s located, and what it will be like. Some people imagine heaven to be an ethereal, dream-like place where the inhabitants are vaporous spirits—but this is contrary to what the Bible teaches.
Put simply, heaven is the home of God. Separate from and beyond creation, it’s an entirely different realm of existence. But it is a literal place with form and substance, and it contains the holy city. The apostle John had a vision of this place, and what he saw is recorded for us in chapters 21 and 22 of Revelation. A wall with foundation stones and gates surrounds the city, which has a street, a river, God’s throne, and the tree of life. All of these are material objects, although they far exceed anything of earthly substance.
Jesus told His disciples that He was going away to prepare a place for them in His Father’s house. He also said He’d return to take them there so they could be with Him forever. Then they watched as His resurrected body ascended from the earth and returned to heaven (Acts 1:9). He is still there today in His physical body, sitting at the right hand of the Father’s throne.
When Christ returns, He will resurrect Christians who have died, transform the bodies of believers who are still alive, and take us all back to the eternal home He has prepared for all His followers. Only then will we finally understand what heaven is.
Bible in One Year: 1 Corinthians 14-16