The Weirdest Christian Belief I Still Stand By: Heaven is For Real

heaven-on-earth-joshua-ness-andy-gill

So, here’s the thing, as much as my theology over the course of the past few years has changed, I still believe in “eternal life.” I know, it’s weird. I can already sense the eyes rolling into the back of my progressive friend’s heads.

But, hear me out, then, you may fully judge…

The type of eternal life I’m speaking of is more so immortality than it is our elusive and over popularized American evangelical understanding of heaven; you know, the heaven in which exists somewhere in the sky. What I’m referring to is the future possibility of our consciousness existing for ridiculously long period of time.

We must remember and address the misconception of the “end times” as Tim LaHaye’s best selling books painted, some how, into our biblical, err, mainstream theology…

With that said, the end times, they are not the end of the world; the end times are the beginning of what Christ intended.

Heaven Is Real, Apparently…

Heaven, therefore, is not some celestial place in which we will ascend to when our day of rest comes. Heaven is here on earth, yet, simultaneously so much more and cannot be fully encapsulated by our limited understanding of time and space; it’s what we as the church, the bride of Christ, individual Christian’s are called and entrusted to build; we are, as the cliche goes, “His hands and feet.”

What if the eternal life in which scripture refers to is not the eternal life in which we’ve come to believe in? What if, instead, the eternal life in which our faith speaks of is about transcendence of the here and now, and therein, living in harmony with what’s divine?

“I believe in the afterlife because of the absurdity of our existence.”

But, when we take a step back I think we begin to notice that the absurdity of life and our very existence is so beyond our understanding and comprehension, why then, should we not believe in the possibility of a life that is immortal?

Oppositional Response: Because, there’s absolutely zero empirical evidence pointing us to this reality of being anywhere close to immortality being actualized…?

Me: Fair, but, wrong.

Think about this for a second: about 20 years ago, if you asked someone if they believed in the existence of extraterrestrial life existing on other planets, they’d categorize you as a “wacko” for simply pondering that thought out loud. Yet, today, its common knowledge to believe in the existence of extraterrestrial life.

I’ve learned in my short lived life that everyone has a threshold for however far they’re willing to allow themselves to dream – and, this threshold directly effects what we do, how we talk, relate, and interact with our job, family, friends, religion, and yes, science.

“Further measurements led astronomers to believe there are between 100 billion and 200 billion galaxies in the observable Universe that human-made technology can detect… And that was the working estimate for the next two decades, until this week. Astronomers at the University of Nottingham now say the number of galaxies in the observable Universe is 2 trillion, more than 10 times as many as previously thought.[1]”

A majority of you reading this own a mini computer, with a “revolutionary user interface,” in which “works like magic…”that fits into the palm of your hand and, is small enough to carry around in skinny jeans without notice [as Steve Jobs stated so eloquently] . A little over a 150 years ago, if you introduced the iPhone you would have LITERALLY been burned at the stake for your revolutionary user interface, err, demon magic.

Now, let’s get a little bit more relevant; lets talk about stem cell research and/or revolutionary science in which enables bio-engineers to construct and effectively grow [with consistency] human frickin’ organs – muscles, blood vessels, bladders… [2]

Don’t just read over that. Take a moment to pause, and to think on the fact that we can, have, and will continue to grow human. organs… (and, if this isn’t you right now, then, you’re dead inside).

All of this to say, why would anyone suggest that we would never be able to access human immortality. Personally in this new year I want to be surrounded by dreamers; friends in which have a threshold in which can endure and eventually revolutionize the status quo.

The questions to leave, answer and/or discuss here are the ethics of these future possibilities. Who will have access to these organs? Is it possible to make them available for all, while not compromising treatment and/or quality? If so how so? And, lastly, consciousness; will we ever be able to transfer consciousness from body to body?

[1] the atlantic

[2] Growing New Organs

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