The new heaven and new earth

I am still reading NT Wright's Surprised by Hope and learning a lot from it and I'm especially glad that it somewhat conforms to what I thought about heaven and what we bring to heaven, or rather the new heaven and new earth. With it, I'm now able to be more firm about my thoughts on the subject.

For one, Wright's gist of the book is about life after life after death, and on one of his favorite subject, the kingdom of God, which he interprets quite differently from the other writers and scholars.

One of the important things that he brought up is how wrong our regular thought of heaven is. After we die, we do not get transferred to a distant and disembodied heaven. But rather, we come back to this very earth, but renewed, like it was supposed to be, good and perfect as created by God.

I blogged before about my nagging thoughts on the existence of God. I made a general reference to the Star Trek series where the beliefs of gods in alien civilisations are seen to be stupid and childish. What I did not refer to was this episode where there is this civilisation of people, or humanoids as they call them, where the dead are sent to "heaven" where they will start a new phase of life with the departed, but it was found that they instead remained as corpses in a cavern in another planet.

That episode stayed with me because I find it a parody of what I believed in. And for that, I'm being denigrated to a childish sort person who believes that I go to a place when I die but actually I still remain dead.

But with what Wright has proposed, that is we finally come back to this earth, fresh and renewed, it certainly makes more sense and I feel more comfortable now that I no longer felt belittled by such parodies.

I highly recommend you to read Surprised by Hope and let your understanding of what heaven and what life after death is be challenged by Wright's proposition.



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