We have to think about this one. It’s important. How we answer this question, may change a lot of other things for us. Would you be happy in heaven if Jesus wasn’t there?
If you could have heaven with no sickness, no injustice, with all your family and friends, with all the delicious food you could ever eat, with leisure activities galore, with natural beauties and physical pleasures to enjoy, could you be happy in heaven with all of this if Jesus wasn’t there?
Hmmmm…it’s a convicting question to ponder, is it not?
In addition to getting you to think about this question, I’ll offer one implication to contemplate as well. If the answer is ‘no’, you would not be happy in heaven if you had all of that, but no Jesus, then that changes the way we do evangelism and the goal of evangelism.
I can think of a lot of non-Christians who would love living a place without sickness, death, or injustice; who would love living in a place with delicious food, phenomenal leisure activities, natural beauties, and physical pleasures to enjoy. Who wouldn’t want to live in a place like that? But if evangelism isn’t about getting people to do whatever it takes to be able to enter a place like that, but rather evangelism is getting people to cherish Jesus above all those great gifts, how are you going to do that? What’s it going to take to help people cherish Jesus above Jesus’ gifts?
This is precisely why conversion is supernatural. I’m sorry, but unless God’s Spirit is sovereignly working in the life of a non-Christian, you are not going to convince them cherishing Jesus is more pleasurable than cherishing Jesus’ gifts.
If cherishing Jesus above Jesus’ gifts is the goal of evangelism, then that changes the way we do evangelism as well. Often, we tend to lead with “how great heaven will be” and we ask them, “don’t you want to be in a place like that?” But I wonder if that just puts the other person in the position of using Jesus to get something from him. If the goal of evangelism is getting lost people to cherish Jesus above Jesus’ gifts, then our evangelism tactic needs to begin with presenting Jesus to them first. Smuggling Jesus in under his gifts is not evangelism…it’s deception.
So back to my question: would you be happy in heaven if Jesus wasn’t there?