Pentecost +3 - Year B
What many take too literally (heaven), is an extended parable or thought experiment:
For we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. [NRSV]The certainty of heaven is no more so than the certainty of hell: both certainties are bound to disappoint (that’s the nature of certainty).
If you had to pick something on which to stake your behaviors, you could do worse than verses 16-20 from The Message
Because of this decision we don't evaluate people by what they have or how they look. We looked at the Messiah that way once and got it all wrong, as you know. We certainly don't look at him that way anymore. Now we look inside, and what we see is that anyone united with the Messiah gets a fresh start, is created new. The old life is gone; a new life burgeons! Look at it!If one perspective is going to influence another, let it be looking at humans through non-utilitarian eyes will give us a better understanding of whatever a “heaven” might offer to a feed-back loop that keeps us moving along.