“In my opinion, our mother in Heaven will not cease to be our mother - she will be our mother as she ought to have been all along.” Sean O.
I agree that I will know my mother in Heaven, but I believe that the role she played in my life will take on different and greater proportions. Once I reached adulthood, living in this life before her death, there was a shift in our roles. Towards the end of her life here, I was the caretaker. I often teased her and still do my Dad. When they don’t do as I wish I say; “I did not raise you to behave this way!”
I think this of all roles that we play in this life. The nature of our relationships meets the need of this world, they will be different in the reality that is GOD. Specifically, I think about someone like Billy Graham. A lifetime serving as an Evangelist. In Heaven, there is no need for evangelizing. I don’t think serving in a new way diminishes who Billy Graham is, but he will not have the moniker of Evangelist in a reality that needs no evangelist, neither will anyone be needed to serve in the role of a Mother, Father, Siblings, Husband or Wife as we do here. And with the defeat of the final enemy, death; I anticipate meeting all the people who lived thousands of years before me and will possibly after me. But I will know and be known. 1 Corinthians 15:26 & 42-47. 1 Corinthians 13:12.
I think that is what scripture means when it says, “eye has not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which GOD hath prepared for them that love him.” 1 Corinthians 2:9-16. To settle for a life that is simply an enhancement of this world seems somehow to shortchange a reality we cannot begin to imagine. Even the animals will change the order of their living. Lions will eat straw like ox! Isaiah 11:6-9. I won’t try to imagine what life looks like free of all the sorrow sin has brought us, but I don’t believe it will mirror a fallen world.
I agree that we will know our loved ones as GOD had always intended. I just don’t believe those relationships take their clues from this life, and I believe that ‘loved ones’ will be expanded to encompass the entire family of GOD. This life is a shadow of reality to come. Our living now involves the natural man. But the question of whether we are more spirit than natural could possibly rest with the understanding that GOD is a spirit and we are made in His image. We have always assumed that meant natural body, but if GOD is a spirit, despite the temporal shell of these bodies, are we not primarily spirit as well?
“I think the first point I would make is that in spite of similar environmental influences, people make very different choices. Both Saul and David grew up in the same culture and very similar environments, yet David honored the Lord and Saul did not. So, there is some part of us that makes choices - we have a will. And we cannot reduce ourselves to our environment because different people make different choices within the same environment.” Sean O.
We are in complete agreement on this point. I consider GOD the great equalizer. When you find GOD, all playing fields are leveled. It is why we can do all things through CHRIST JESUS! The Lord is most powerful in our shortcomings. Even in environmental disparities.
I think Pastor Laurie’s blog did not reason out for me. He said we would know our loved ones based upon their appearance. That familiarity would guarantee that we would recognize them. However, when studying the scriptural references, those scriptures indicate that the disciples of JESUS did not recognize him upon meeting him after the resurrection.
Mary Magdalene thought he was the gardener, he had to call her name before she knew. John 20:14-16. Although Mary told the disciples, it took an appearance behind closed doors and a display of his wounds to convince the disciples. John 20:18-20. Though the disciples told Thomas he would not believe until he had thrust his hands into his wounds. John 20-25-28. In John 21:1-12 some of his disciples saw Him on the shore of a river they had fished without success all night. But they did not recognize him. When He told them what side of the boat to drop their net. Immediately catching 153 fish, John ask Peter, “is that the Lord?” In John 20:30 and John 21:25 it was said he performed many more miracles before the disciples. So many that if they had all been written the world could not contain all the books recording his acts. This does not indicate recognition evidenced by familiar appearances.
Another of Pastor’s Laurie’s examples was at the Mount of Transfiguration. He said how else could the disciples recognize who met with JESUS. First, that passage said “it appeared” to the disciples that it was Moses and Elias. But again, that sighting had more to do with assumptions based upon well known prophetic words. Like the ones in Malachi 4:5-6. The disciples even after being witnesses to the ministry of CHRIST believed like most of Israel that JESUS would restore the natural kingdom of Israel. Even after the resurrection, they were still asking when it would happen. Acts 1:6. For 40 days JESUS provided infallible proof of his identity. That negates the conclusion that they knew Him by familiar sight. But the spirit would remain unchanged by the donning of a resurrected body, don’t you think?