The major revelation of the Bible is God’s goal to create an eternal new nation.
In the last blog (A major foundational principle of the Bible) we met the Triune God in Genesis 1. On the new heavens and earth we will be with them, ‘The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and His servants will serve Him.’ 1 The Holy Spirit will also be there, ‘The Spirit and the bride say….’ 2 In this blog we want to discuss the plural heavens.
# Three heavens
- Scripture reveals that God created more than one heaven, ‘In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.’ 3
- 2 Corinthians 12:2-3 supports it, ‘I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven…to paradise.’ A third heaven means there must also be a first and second heaven.
- So the first heaven would be the sky 4 and the third heaven God’s dwelling place, but why is there a second heaven?
# Two kingdoms
- In Matthew 12:26-28 Jesus mentioned the existence of two invisible kingdoms, the Kingdom of God, and the kingdom of Satan. While Satan was still the angel, Lucifer, he rebelled against God’s authority and wanted to take God’s place on His throne.
- In the war that followed, he was expelled from the third heaven. ‘And there was war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven. The great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him.’ 5
# The kingdom in the second heaven
- Between the first and the third heaven the devil and his angels set up their kingdom of darkness. From there they harass God’s people on earth, and oppose God in every way they can.
- Thus Scripture warns, ‘…our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.’ 6
# The origin of negative social issues
The times we live in are full of great surprises. Many things happen that baffle us, like the wars about genders, marriages and many other social issues that are antagonistic towards God’s designs. The origin of those issues is the chief Rebel who has his seat in the second heaven. We meet him in Genesis 3 as the serpent.
God in His omniscience, created more than one heaven. Note that at the end of this age, when Satan’s kingdom has been destroyed, there will be only one heaven, ‘Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth.’ 7
- Revelation 22:3b
- Revelation 22:17
- Genesis 1:1
- Genesis 1:8
- Revelation 12:7-10
- Ephesians 6:12
- Revelation 21:1