Heaven Coach

How To Get To Heaven

Characteristics For Heaven

July 22, 2015 By: alanpg Category: How To Get to Heaven

Characteristics For Heaven

Immediately below is a somewhat larger type than above to help if larger print is required.

You will NOT ACHIEVE HEAVEN by some good fortune, there will be no luck involved.
You will NOT ACHIEVE HEAVEN because God has decided on some percentage of people that will succeed.
You WILL NOT RECEIVE THIS ETERNAL HEAVENLY INHERITANCE from God because He is loving and merciful, although the way to heaven is open because God is loving and merciful.

You WILL ACHIEVE HEAVEN because during your lifetime you lived the characteristics God requires.
You WILL ACHIEVE HEAVEN because those characteristics are the ones that allow you to find truth, obey the truth and continue to live God’s way. Specifically, losing your life by unselfishly living it for Christ and the gospel.

God’s design of this PROCESS TO HEAVEN is perfect, more so than the creation of all things seen and unseen, because it is at the core of God’s purpose. The other things we see are just the props on the stage of life and are temporary.

Characteristics For Heaven

The Characteristic That God EMPHASIZES For Heaven

God is looking for certain characteristics in a person to be found acceptable for heaven. More than that, these characteristics are mandatory for success. How does this work, how will God know, how can God be fair? Of course, with God all things are possible and in reality all things are easily accomplished by God, since nothing is difficult for God. The creation of all we see, of life itself were mere thoughts and He spoke everything into existence.
In the case of judging people, He has devised a plan to save humankind and in that framework your personal characteristics are revealed. This is what will be discussed on this page. Every person ought to know these things and it is God’s plan that your character can hold you back from truth, just as it will be your character that brings you to the truth. The most significant trait that keeps you from truth and it’s opposite is the most basic trait leading you to truth is respectively pride and humility. In one verse, God explains this and it is prominent throughout the scriptures and expressed in many different ways.

1 Peter 5.5

5 ….“God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.”

So, God resists the proud and gives grace to the humble. This characteristic of humility is not something that can be faked, although many “fake it” in the world. God cannot be fooled! Your humble character will lead you to obedience, whereas one faking humility will never find and act on the truth. The characteristics God requires are needed to find, obey and live the truth. In this sense, there will be no one who finds heaven other than the kind of person God desires. God’s judgment will be easy and clear and you do not have to wait until your end comes to know the basis of your outcome. As you read the various pages at this site (and as long as they are perfectly consistent with God’s word) you will understand God’s purpose. You will understand what God requires and be in a position, if you want heaven badly enough to obey God. There are many people who want heaven, but when it comes to doing what God requires their character is for example not humble, or not open-minded enough to do something different than they current believe. You will see that God’s plan in His infinite wisdom is the GREAT SEPARATOR of those who are successful in life and those who will fail.

We might begin by answering the question, “What is life all about?” We can name hundreds of things like life is about love, life is about family or money, or a car or house or an education, or children, or about some institution (like a church) or about food, or a vacation or a job or working hard or getting all we can, or sacrificing for others and the list would be endless. Life is not about any of these things, but life is about the soul and about nothing else. In our life it is our soul that needs to be our source of concern and of course, we will have a concern for the souls of others. Life can be said in that context to be a war between good and evil and very personally a war between YOU and SIN! God’s plan defined what is right and what is sinful. Sin has been defined to be a very direct means to test of your character. In the beginning there needed to be something, which God forbade for Adam and Eve. In their case it was just one thing, that being eating from the fruit of the tree in the center of the garden. God allowed Satan to provide an incentive for Adam and Eve to disobey God and in their pride to be like God, they relented. They had a free will as do all of humankind. God has made the rules and to disobey them is called sin. In the process of human existence, God will get exactly the people He wants for heaven. The weakness of humanity was seen in Adam and Eve and their disobedience would separate them from God. God immediately reveals the plan in Genesis 3.15 to reconcile a person back to Him. That plan was perfectly fulfilled in Jesus several thousand years later.

Back to the characteristics God looks for in a person and how these are the people who will find God, obey God for forgiveness of past sins and then live faithfully the remainder of their lives. What is the origin of the characteristics mentioned at the top of this page? Are they important, are they essential for your success?
Characteristics for Heaven

Humility is the “consistent required characteristic” throughout scripture that is needed to please God. It is the backbone for so many of the other characteristics, just as pride is the characteristic that distances a person from God. Jesus taught this idea many times beginning with Matthew 5.3, which is a verse that does not mention the word humility. It is also a verse that many people criticize or try to explain away by various means. Nonetheless, it is a perfect and concise representation of what people need to achieve heaven.

Matthew 5.3

3 Blessed are the poor in spirit, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

The kingdom of heaven is for those who can face up to their disobedience to God and humble themselves to obey God. In view of their sin they are saddened and are not those who are looking for great joy on earth, but eventually in heaven. They realize Jesus suffered and died for THEIR transgressions against God. They realize the seriousness of life. The scriptures from before Jesus was living as a man on earth emphasize this idea.

Proverbs 16.18

18 Pride goes before destruction, And a haughty spirit before a fall.

Haughty is a word that indicates a character that is proud, arrogant, conceited, superior and condescending. These are the things that we do not like to see in people, but that so often are really a part of our character and often hidden as much as possible. This is an awesomely powerful verse if one realizes the extent of pride and haughty lifestyle of people today and throughout the ages. It would be easy to conclude that few will succeed in life. All can achieve heaven, but few are willing to actually live differently, live obediently to the Savior. This is very apparent and exceedingly sad as life is certainly brief and followed by the judgment.

One powerful characteristic that is more of an outcome of a study of God’s word is the fear of the Lord. The characteristic that helps you understand this is a LOVE OF THE TRUTH and behind that is humility. A person comes to the truth because he/she is humble enough, open-minded enough to see the wisdom of the God’s word. There is a tremendous difference between the the word of God and the word of men and women. There is a perfect “fitting together” of everything from God’s word and perfect confusion from the continuously changing theories of humankind. God offers answers for every person and an inconceivable wonderful and eternal finale. Humankind offers non-existence and a hopeless life all for a brief temporary gratification. God warns us there is no hope in a life featuring the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life. These things support confusion, and God associates evil with confusion.

James 3.16,17

16 For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there. 
17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy.

The world is confused about the meaning of live and the religious world creates a great deal of that confusion as it does not represent the wisdom that is from above. The characteristics behind the confusion are envy, selfishness and very much the opposite of what God looks for in people. As a result the world does not know God, God’s purpose or the meaning of life.

A characteristic of those headed to heaven is the ability to distinguish value, not myopia in living life for yourself and getting all you can at any cost. Life is serious and about the soul and about living unselfishly. God’s picture of the “right life” must seem silly to those who live for all they can get out of life. Yet, this is just how different the world sees life compared to how they need to see life.

Ecclesiastes 7.3

3 Sorrow is better than laughter, For by a sad countenance the heart is made better.

Clearly, living your life as these verses (Matthew 5.3, Ecclesiastes 7.3) indicate cannot be the right way to live – YET IT IS! Is it any wonder that the scriptures are considered as foolishness? As God says, foolishness to those who are perishing, that is on the road to failure.

Proverbs 28.6

6 Better is the poor who walks in his integrity Than one perverse in his ways, though he be rich.

Then James 4.9 “seals the deal” regarding how God sees the importance of laughter and frivolity and consequently people say this cannot be from God. God’s plan is indeed working perfectly as people reject the wisdom of God that leads to heaven.

James 4.9

9 Lament and mourn and weep! Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom.

Life is short and each person needs to make the most of life, not in pleasure, but in seriously seeking eternity with God. When people say, live life to the fullest they mean get all you can out of life and the list of those desirable things include love, family, friends, education, jobs, vacations, houses, bank accounts and the list is endless. That list might include many noble things in terms of giving and yet life is ultimately not about any of those things, but life is about the soul. God is saying to take life’s true purpose seriously and that all the things you seek in the world are temporary.

2 Corinthians 4.16-18

16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. 
17 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, 
18 while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.

It is not an easy thing to live a life that ends in heaven, because it requires a very special character. A character of courage that supports God’s ways in a world that rejects God and His rules. The world to various degrees and in various times has approved sinful things. The world frequently believes their ways are better than God’s, the world is more forgiving, more tolerant and finally fully accepting of sin. So there is great frivolity, great laughter in the acceptance and practice of sin – but it is temporary. There is no happiness in sin and so the person of God looks at their own sin and its cost – the the terrible suffering death of God’s Son and they lament and mourn and weep. They look at the world and are not busily condemning people, but see they have the answer to sin and must help others as they have been helped. They rejoice momentarily when one turns to God, but know that their best efforts will be considered as barely acceptable to God if they continue in obedience – so where is the time for joy and laughter? Life needs to serious and directed to living in obedience to God and the rest does not matter. The power, the fame, the frivolity, the possessions are treasures laid up on earth and could not be more meaningless. Lay up your treasures in heaven and that will indicate the true “location” of you heart and then your ending will be in heaven.

Matthew 6.19-21

19 “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; 
20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. 
21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

A portion of what follows is from Chapter 4 of this author’s book, “What Is Life All About?” As we have been discussing it emphasizes the importance of the character of a person in relation to finding, obeying and living the truth. Then it clears up the idea of predestination as discussed in the bible. Specific persons are NOT predestined, but God seeks certain types of people – certain characteristics. We might correctly say that the plan of God to save was predestined and it includes predestined characteristics for the people who will choose to seek truth, obey truth and live faithfully.

Chapter 4
It Is This Certain Type of Person

Hearing you will hear and shall not understand, And seeing you will see and not perceive; For the heart of this people has grown dull, Their ears are hard of hearing, And their eyes they have closed, Lest they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears, Lest they should understand with their heart and turn, So that I should heal them.
Matthew 13.14-15

4.1 The Critical Nature of Your Character, Attitude

I Have Been suggesting that a person’s character, attitudes are central to finding the truth and, in the end, a successful conclusion to life. I believe this based on verses like the one above and hundreds more in scripture that point to this idea. The profile of one who finds the truth and “stays the course” has the following characteristics:


The proud will not become servants, not even to God. The humble see God in His position and realize that what they have, even their life, belongs to God. The scriptures emphasize the necessity of humility and there are just three verses below. There is a more complete discussion of humility and pride at the Cost of Pride as well as throughout the many posts and pages of Heaven Coach.

Matthew 18.1-4

1 At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?”
2 Then Jesus called a little child to Him, set him in the midst of them,
3 and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.
4 Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.

James 4.10

10 Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.

Luke 14.11

11 For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.

Strength of character:

They will not deny truth even in painful or difficult situations and also have the strength to change when they find they are wrong.

Acts 14.22

22 strengthening the souls of the disciples, exhorting them to continue in the faith, and saying, “We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God.”

Distinguishes value:

They will be able to see enormous value in God’s way, substantially, so that the pleasures of this life would not be nearly as important.

Romans 8.18

18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.

2 Timothy 4.18

18 And the Lord will deliver me from every evil work and preserve me for His heavenly kingdom. To Him be glory forever and ever. Amen!

2 Corinthians 4.17

17 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, 

Luke 8.25

25 But He said to them, “Where is your faith?”
And they were afraid, and marveled, saying to one another, “Who can this be? For He commands even the winds and water, and they obey Him!”

Love of the truth:

They will have to be stubborn enough not to accept less than the truth, question, and keep questioning. Only the truth satisfies.

Matthew 5.6

6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, For they shall be filled.

2 Thessalonians 2.10

10 and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. 


The truth may be quite different than you expect and only those who can see beyond things currently believed can come to the truth.10

Matthew 13.14-17

14 And in them the prophecy of Isaiah is fulfilled, which says:
‘Hearing you will hear and shall not understand,
And seeing you will see and not perceive;
15 For the hearts of this people have grown dull.
Their ears are hard of hearing,
And their eyes they have closed,
Lest they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears,
Lest they should understand with their hearts and turn,
So that I should heal them.’
16 But blessed are your eyes for they see, and your ears for they hear; 17 for assuredly, I say to you that many prophets and righteous men desired to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.

Love of God and man:

They have a heartfelt concern for others and are thankful to God for their blessings.

Matthew 22.37-39

37 Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’
38 This is the first and great commandment.
39 And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.


The person of God has a forgiving spirit, seeks God’s forgiveness, and forgives others.

Colossians 3.12,13

12 Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering;
13 bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do.

It seems that all of these things are important in coming to the truth. If you possess the last two items on this list, your journey to truth will be easier. Yet these things develop more substantially after you come to the truth and begin living it. Out of these characteristics comes a dedicated servant to God. A person who is willing to do what God requires. Jesus would say, “If you love Me, keep My commandments” (John 14.15). Certainly, as we sincerely appreciate all that God has truly done for us in Christ, we are anxious to obey. As we make this transition to obedience, we will see that nothing is as pleasing to God as such an attitude. Character, not brilliance or intelligence gets one to the truth. A good, honest heart is necessary. I know some people who “fit the bill” of character very well. Yet they do not know the truth. They embrace the error effectively taught since their childhood and that typically involved loved ones both alive and deceased. They need to be open-minded when it comes to religion. Perhaps they are also missing the strength to change after believing error for so long. I said they “fit the bill” of character because in other areas of their life, they have an open mind and a strong desire for finding the underlying cause. When it comes to religion, some seem to take on different characters or live “out of character.” Yet nothing will require more of us in terms of character than finding and living the truth. At the beginning of this chapter, Jesus, in Matthew 13.14-15, gives a strong indictment against many to whom He was speaking. The same applies today, perhaps even more so. Can you see Jesus saying the same thing today? We hear but do not understand because we do not want to hear. We like parts of the message, and these we can hear, but where the message interferes with our life, we seem to miss “hearing” those things. Jesus is saying the difficult parts for you are the parts of the message you need so you can understand with your heart and “turn.” You can repent—change your life. You can only do that by facing up to the truth about yourself. This is the only way Jesus can heal you. Many will not respond to God’s message, like the Pharaoh of Moses’ day. Repeatedly, he had his heart hardened by what God had done.

Exodus 11.10

10 So Moses and Aaron did all these wonders before Pharaoh; and the Lord hardened Pharaoh’s heart, and he did not let the children of Israel go out of his land.

So we likewise may become hardened of heart when we see what God requires of us. The answer to our problems is before us, but our pride is stronger. Jesus provides a parable in Luke 8.4-15 along these lines and then explains it to His disciples. He says the seed of the parable is the Word of God. The seeds fall on the hearts of men. God compares the reception of His word to seed falling by the wayside, seed falling onto rocks, seed falling into a thorny area, and seed falling onto good soil. In the wayside case, the seed does not remain in the person’s heart; in the rock case, the seed has no root, and when temptation comes, the person falls away. In the seed among the thorns, there is growth; but soon cares, riches, pleasures of life choke the Word, and no fruit comes to maturity. In the last case, the seed falls on good soil or, as Jesus says, on a noble and good heart, and that person keeps the Word and bears fruit. In summary, some hear the Word of God and understand and others hear but do not understand as though they do not care to hear. Their “hearts” have grown dull, lethargic. Jesus makes it clear that the “heart” of a person is essential to hearing, understanding, acting on what is required and then growing in knowledge of the Word and eventually also bearing fruit. Then as we look through the New Testament, we see the characteristics of those who find the truth and stay the course. The seven characteristics listed above are to help you understand the type of person that comes to know the truth. The important thing is the big picture; and this means your attitude, your character—which are all really tied up in the idea of your “heart”—are essential in receiving the Word and keeping it. Just for clarification, the “heart” referred to is, of course, your mind and not the “blood pump.”

4.2 Predestination, Understand God’s Intent

Many of the “Protestant” persuasion teach that God has predestined specific persons to receive salvation. Its origin goes back to John Calvin’s (and Theodore Beza, a disciple of Calvin and his successor) thinking and is another one of those errors that leads to the creation of other errors. See appendix 2 where Calvin’s five points (TULIP) are discussed with this predestination doctrine being the U part of TULIP. U stands for “Unconditional election” of the individual or the modern version: God saves those He selects. The L, I, and P are then consequences of the Unconditional election. The whole TULIP idea gets its start from the T, which stands for “Total inherited depravity” and builds from that initial false doctrine. The source of this “Unconditional election theory” comes in part from Bible verses that use the word predestined. However, close examination indicates that God predestined the plan, not any specific person. The closest I can get to predestination of a person would be that of the type of person that is predestined. The characteristics of that type of person defined along the lines of the profile given at the beginning of this chapter. I can say that because the verses supporting those characteristics are things God points to as needed to come to the truth, act on the truth, and remain faithful. The idea of predestination of a specific person is a blasphemy to God! Selecting certain persons to be His children would make God a respecter of persons, which He is not and says He is not!

Ephesians 1.11-14

11 In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will,
12 that we who first trusted in Christ should be to the praise of His glory.
13 In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise,
14 who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory.

The predestination is for those who trusted in Christ, NOT a specific person, but those who choose to believe the word of truth of the gospel.

Acts 10.34

34 Then Peter opened his mouth and said: “In truth I perceive that God shows no partiality.

God was gradually through the Holy Spirit revealing all things during the first century and in the verse above Peter and then the apostles (all Jews) were to better understand there was no partiality of persons with God. In this case, the revelation was that the Gentiles (non-Jews) were also fit subjects for the kingdom. Indeed, as God promised to Abraham, in his seed All Nations would be blessed.

1 Peter 1.17

17 And if you call on the Father, who without partiality judges according to each one’s work, conduct yourselves throughout the time of your stay here in fear;

Romans 2.11

11 For there is no partiality with God.

As we understand God, we see His purpose for man can only be fulfilled if man has a free will, wherein he makes choices to follow after good or evil, to follow after truth or error. It is God’s plan that in a sense also predestines the character and associated attitude of those who find the truth and act on it. So God in the sense of the plan He designed(includes as key elements sin, obedience, fear, love and forgiveness) also as a consequence defined the character of those going to heaven. Anyone wanting to go to heaven badly enough can simply respond to the predestined plan, the Gospel of Christ. However, not everyone has a “love of the truth” and thus many will never come to the required knowledge (2 Thessalonians 2:10: “and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved”). Many people do not care or they are satisfied where they are religiously, and the truth is not important to them (since they already have it). These necessary character traits help you understand that you will need the right attitude in relation to the gospel message; otherwise, you may hear but not respond. One of the most important reasons for this book is to bring to people’s attention the importance of the truth. You need to have a love of the truth because your eternity is at stake, the secular world does not care, the religious world teaches hundreds of different things, and even the “Christian world” teaches dozens of different things. The correct character places you in a position of desiring the truth, really requiring the truth, and nothing less will satisfy. Then you need to be humble enough and strong enough to do the right thing even if it is difficult. God predestined the plan and in that sense, defined the apparent characteristics of the person but not the person. In summary, your character is very important initially in finding the truth and then continuing in truth. The most important characteristics in coming to the truth are a love of the truth and humility. Such a person when faced with the truth trusts in God and Christ and follows the divine direction. In this “free will” way, humble, truth loving men and women act on the predestined plan. That plan is the Gospel of Christ, “that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself.” As a faithful child of God, we obtain the inheritance being predestined according to the purpose of God.

Ephesians 1.3-12

3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ,
4 just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love,
5 having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will,
6 to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.
7 In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace
8 which He made to abound toward us in all wisdom and prudence,
9 having made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which He purposed in Himself,
10 that in the dispensation of the fullness of the times He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth—in Him.
11 In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will,
12 that we who first trusted in Christ should be to the praise of His glory.

These verses are a perfect example of how picking and choosing verses leads to a terribly wrong conclusion. All scripture explains itself and if you have a love of the truth you will not pick and choose. Nothing will satisfy you other than the truth and often that means your desire for truth will be stronger than what you currently believe. Actually, it is not logical that God would allow people to make choices and then choose them before they revealed their character. It is logical to explain to humankind the kind of character they need to be successful. Clearly, God is not a respecter of persons, but those who choose to honor and respect God by keeping His commands will please Him and your acceptance of God or your rejection of God is your choice.

How Badly
Do You Want To Go To Heaven?

Your choices will decide your eternity. God wants you to succeed.

1 Timothy 2.3,4

3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, 
4 who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.

We are revealed in our character and that character is itself developed by the many choices we make in life. The selfish person will never develop a character that we have been discussing nor will the proud person. However, if you can get serious about life and understand what God has revealed and see the love of God and as mentioned how He wants every person to come to the knowledge of the truth – then you could change your character if you want heaven badly enough. You see God’s word is truth and it is perfect in converting the soul.

Psalm 19:7

7 The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul; The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple;

It is likely you do not know God’s word or know it correctly and for most they do not want to know. The things that are eternally important to each person are as God indicates foolish to those who will be lost.

1 Corinthians 1.18,19

18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 
19 For it is written: “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise,
And bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.”

Indeed, God requires humankind to live differently and requires a strong character and because God’s grace has appeared to all men you can blame only yourself if you fail.

Titus 2.11,12

11 For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men,
12 teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age,

God ties salvation to living a certain way and that way involves denying ungodliness and worldly lusts and there is a seriousness and determination in one’s life required to live this way. There are things to be overcome and nothing in that regard is more prominent than overcoming sin in your life. First, past sins can be forgiven and then live avoiding sin for the remainder of your life.

note: you have an advocate, a mediator, that is one you can to go to in prayer, repenting; if you have become a child of God – obeyed the gospel

Characteristics for heaven

Indeed, you cannot fool God. God’s ultimate purpose will not be overthrown. During the lifetime of each person, they can oppose God, but this is temporary and in that very opposition they are fulfilling God’s plan. Those who seek God with their whole heart, find Him, obey Him and live faithfully will succeed. Those who oppose God, even His existence are a very long way from success and will fail in life. They will fail as a result of their choices and behind their bad choices one could observe their characteristics. God’s plan as seen in the scriptures does not appeal to prideful, selfish persons. As we can see, the humble person will seek God, seek truth and be willing to submit themselves to God. Those Jews opposing the disciples of Christ (in the first century) were told that if what the disciples were teaching is from God, you cannot overthrow it. Likewise God’s purpose for humanity will come to pass exactly as planned. It was God’s plan that YOU would “in effect” select your final destination by the choices YOU make in life.

Acts 5.38,39

38 And now I say to you, keep away from these men and let them alone; for if this plan or this work is of men, it will come to nothing;
39 but if it is of God, you cannot overthrow it—lest you even be found to fight against God.”

God has not left you all alone in the matter of your soul, but there are many Godly helps found in his word. Of course, heaven is there and it will be wonderful and is described in a way that there is nothing comparable. Yet, we are here now and we have God’s word to hold onto as there is nothing like it in terms of being so perfectly complete in describing God, understanding God and His purpose and His plan.
We have the fear of the Lord to cling to and that is a positive thing and as Solomon concluded at the end of his life – Fear God and Keep His commandments.

Ecclesiastics 12.13,14

13 Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and keep His commandments, For this is man’s all.
14 For God will bring every work into judgment, Including every secret thing, Whether good or evil

God knows that the character of man is such that he will not necessarily chose to do the right thing and thus fear plays an important role. It is interesting how fear can help one person as He sees the seriousness of God’s word, yet another person dislikes that God uses fear, and thus rejects God since the God this person wants does not use fear. Indeed, the consequences indicated by God are real, truthful and yes, threatening. So do you want the truth even if it is fearful? God in His infinite wisdom knows that it will be the character of a person that determines if he/she sees God’s truth as essential and helpful or if he/she sees God’s word as limiting their life’s and a threat if they do not comply and thus the cry,”This (the God of the bible) cannot be God.”
Now, Solomon who had failed in his later life says there are two things (as just mentioned above) essential to your success and they are fear God and keep His commandments. It turns out that Fear of God and obedience are directly connected. Fear and understand God explains the fear of God in a way it is easily understood. The child of God grows in the grace and knowledge of God and this strengthens the person and keeps them on the road to heaven.

Final Thoughts
Characteristics For Heaven

When I ask a person how badly they want to go to heaven, I either get, “there is no heaven” or I might hear, “I am as good as others, maybe better so I should be OK” or some say, “I really want to go to heaven.” The latter person is usually sincere, but typically is not interested in changing their life. The young rich man of Matthew 19 wanted to follow Jesus until he found out the cost and then went his own way.

Matthew 19.16-22

16 Now behold, one came and said to Him, “Good Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life?”
17 So He said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. But if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.”
18 He said to Him, “Which ones?”
Jesus said, “‘You shall not murder,’ ‘You shall not commit adultery,’ ‘You shall not steal,’ ‘You shall not bear false witness,’
19 ‘Honor your father and your mother,’ and, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ ”
20 The young man said to Him, “All these things I have kept from my youth. What do I still lack?”
21 Jesus said to him, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.”
22 But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions.

This discussion of the characteristics for heaven is very serious and indicates the strength of character that is required to achieve heaven. God’s test is perfect, complete in fulfilling His purpose and as usual humankind does not see things the same as God. The only way you can understand God and His purpose for YOU is to understand the word of God (the word of truth of the gospel, Ephesians 1.13). The spiritual things (like God, God’s purpose, heaven, your spiritual nature and so-on) are beyond knowing by humankind, although men and women have invented many things to explain life and its purpose, or we might say its “non-purpose” since life for many is just some accident. God has since the beginning revealed Himself, really revealed these unsearchable things in different ways and to different degrees. Initially there was revelation directly to certain persons, for example Adam and Eve. Then there was revelation through messengers and through prophets and in this last age (as God has so defined it) there is revelation through His Son. The Son sent the Spirit of God to lead the apostles into all truth (John 16.13) and today we have the completed word of God. It consists of what God had delivered before Christ and now this final revealing of what humankind needs. There was a mystery in the writings of old, but now a person can have a complete understanding of God’s purpose and plan.

Hebrews 1.1,2

1 God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, 
2 has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds;

The seriousness of life in God’s view can be seen most clearly in the necessity of God’s Son becoming a man and suffering the terrible death. Jesus Himself learned obedience by the things He suffered and now those who obey Him can achieve eternal salvation.

Hebrews 5.8,9

8 though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered. 
9 And having been perfected, He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him

God, in His wisdom saw fit to deliver the spiritual things humankind needed by His word. He did this gradually and finally all was fulfilled in Christ in terms of the reconciliation. Now, God has completed His predestined plan originally revealed without clarity in Genesis 3.15 and now humankind has all things pertaining to life and Godliness (2 Peter 1.2-4).

Ephesians 3.9-11

9 and to make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things through Jesus Christ; 
10 to the intent that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places, 
11 according to the eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord,

note: The church referred to is the body of Christ, and consists of those who have obeyed the gospel and are living godly life’s. Each person was added to the church by Christ in their obedience – Acts 2.47. This body of Christ was in God’s eternal purpose and from Acts 2 forward it is in existence as the reconciliation is possible.

Jesus’ life demonstrated the characteristics that every person needs to be successful and it began with humility in the life He lived. He was not royalty, but a common man born into a poor family and with an appearance described in Isaiah 53 that is not flattering – Understand Jesus. He was tempted and even overcame the trickery of Satan. Yes, Jesus was God and Man during His time on earth and was serious about His mission and near the end wanted to know if there was some way the suffering He was about to face could be avoided – it could not and He went to the cross. Jesus was perfect in exhibiting the characteristics that are important and we cannot be perfect in that regard. Jesus death, burial and resurrection is the very reason we can be less than perfect and still achieve heaven – be forgiven of sin. The scriptures say “how shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation”, that is escape the just and awful reward for transgressions and disobedience. Indeed, God’s plan for your success depends on choices you make and the choice you need is the forgiveness of sins received in obeying the gospel. They are difficult choices because the world and what it offers is so appealing and that is why the scriptures indicate the kind of person it will take to succeed. You should not think that your choice is any less difficult than the young rich man in terms of changing your life and living for Christ and the gospel.

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