Readers' Responses to Heaven
Heaven is a book every minister needs to have. Extensive, Biblical, Accessible, and a joy to read. –H.C.
This book was one of my husband's first gifts to me. Somehow I could never read it, get into it. After he flew to Heaven, I opened it again – and fell right into it. Two nights after he died, at 2:30am perched on my kitchen counter, I cried, knowing God had directed him to buy this book to minister to me at just the right time. SO GOOD, people. Read it. Or buy it to have ready when you need it. –C.F.
I had a crisis of faith in my early 30s which led me to begin studying the Bible in earnest, figuring out what I believed and why I believed it. Near the end of that five year study, I read your book Heaven and it transformed my understanding of God. Eternity became something I longed for rather than something I feared. Thank you! –T.C.
This book has blown my mind and given me hope as well as challenged me to consider how to steward my days best on this earth. It's a day by day process, but your words have encouraged me greatly. I've read it through twice...this is arguably one of the most impactful books I have ever read outside of Scripture. I look forward to meeting you on the New Earth! –B.W.
This week an older lady in our church died. Her friend shared with me how lovingly peaceful and joyous Betty had been about going to see the LORD. One thing that she noticed when visiting Betty in the days before her death was your book Heaven. Apparently Betty had read the whole book, and had chosen spending quality time with her family and then dying over having an operation that maybe would work or could leave her with no way to be able to enjoy life. At 84, she chose to enjoy one last week with family and friends then see the LORD. Your book gave her the information she needed to make a hard choice. That last week must have been amazing. –C.B.
I come from Finland. Last year our family was working on the ship Logos Hope. I was helping in the crew library and got the book Heaven in my hands. It totally changed my view about heaven and eternity. It is a year ago that I read the book, and I am still full of joy about our future on the New Earth, about the real life in the real place. I'm also reading the Bible with new eyes. My journal fills up with notes about eternity…. “Be glad and rejoice with all your heart!” "He will rejoice over you with singing!" What a picture! God singing and dancing of joy, because finally he is able to spend the eternity with us! Let the party begin! –M.S.
Five years ago I was making arrangements for my Momma. I had taken care of her for over a year watched cancer take her. The reality of death and just numbness was almost too much. One day while I was shopping I saw an end cap with your book Heaven on it. I think it was the LORD making sure I had that book. I started reading it that day. By the time I had to watch the coffin lowered, I had such a different outlook. I was excited for her and for her new home. Thank you for your work, it's brought so much peace and joy and meaning to so many. –K.
My pastor gave me a copy of your book Heaven. I have been to Bible school, and studied eschatology, and learned from well-known Bible teachers. But I have never heard Heaven talked about in such a way that I could grasp the application to my life. For the first time I am able to see that truly Christ is powerful, and he has the power to heal me, and for the first time I know in my soul that there truly is a great hope to look forward to. For the first time as I read the Bible I am able to see the bigger picture and to see how God’s word truly offers hope. –S.
I am currently reading Heaven right now and it is rocking my world. I was raised in a conservative Christian home and we had many conversations about creation and end times, but little talk of our final destination. Most of my life I have [felt] haunted about the thought of death and Heaven. Now my view of Heaven is totally shifted to a wildly desirable place... Home. This book is blessing me more than you know. –K.M.
My pastor recommended your book Heaven. As I am nearing the last few chapters, I am sad that it's almost over. 500 pages is not near enough when you're discussing Heaven and the New Earth. Thank you for such a joyful, scripture based book. –T.B.
I just finished ready Heaven. Once I purchased it, I couldn't put it down for very long. I am a born again believer and believe in Heaven, but my eyes were opened further by reading your book about what Heaven will be really like. Thank you for writing this book. It encourages me to keep the faith through all of life's trials and it equips me to tell others about what Heaven will be like. –R.F.
What I like about Randy Alcorn is that he didn't set out to write a book by researching Heaven and backing it up with Scripture. He set out to research the Scriptures and based his views on Heaven as closely as possible on the Word of God. When my 25-year old son died tragically in a car accident in 2014, my deep, deep aching heart was comforted by Randy's words about Heaven. As a believer, [I know] that's where my son is now and for eternity and he is completely and wonderfully happy, free from the burdens of this world... I began reading the book Heaven because I wanted to try to figure out what he was doing up there. As Randy says, focusing on Heaven is a great pain reliever! –D.E.
This book Heaven has put a lot in perspective for the here and now, as well as the pain and loss you experience losing a loved one. We now understand the biblical perspective of what we do affects us for all eternity. This helped us to decide to work as houseparents with children who cannot be with their families. What we have learned from Heaven is also our "go to" place when we feel like giving up. –R.B. and S.B.
A friend gave me your Heaven book as a gift. It has brought much joy to me, and I feel much closer to God as a result. Most of all it helped me to love and accept myself in a way I have never been able to achieve in my 62 years of life. Having dealt with great tragedy in my life, your book healed my heart in ways I never thought were possible. –M.A.
My sister had cancer and she passed away a year ago. My preacher gave her your book Heaven because she was terrified of passing away. My sister, my husband and I, and our preacher read and studied the book together. This book brought her to Christ and calmed her fears. She passed in her sleep peacefully and she was ready. I thank you for this book! It gave me a biblical view of Heaven. –D.B.C.
A few years ago our granddaughter’s college roommate died suddenly and unexpectedly, so we went and stayed with her for two weeks to comfort her. She had received your Heaven book as a gift from a college professor, but she had never read it. She pulled it down from the bookshelf one night, but was too distraught to focus on reading it. My husband asked if she would like him to read it to her, so every night while we were there with her he read aloud for two to three hours. It was such a blessing and comfort to our family at that time, and we’ve shared it with many others since then. – M.K.
I read your book, Heaven almost 5 years ago. It was on a whim, I had a babysitter to watch my kids and I was going to sit somewhere with a coffee and your book was within reach at the Christian book store. Until that time in my life I was raised by godly parents and was taught many things about the Bible. I had a confession of faith at the age of 8 and was baptized at the age of 9. While I respected my parents and didn't openly rebel as a teenager, my heart was hard and I couldn't wait to move out and do whatever I wanted.
Then in my early 20's I did just that, and my life was a wreak. When I was 24 I decided I would clean myself up again and start going to church, but I was just putting on a show. I met my husband who had a similar story to mine and we settled into a good "christian life". Then weeks before I was expecting my 3rd baby, I read this book, and it rocked me. For the first time ever I was excited about Jesus! I wanted to know him more and more, because I finally trusted that he had good intentions toward me, he wasn't just out to ruin my fun.
I can't even describe all the ways understanding the truth about Jesus and the place he has made for me has changed my life. I am just so head over heels in love him with him now, I can't stop talking about him - and it's different talk. I used to be a self-righteous know-it-all when debating "Christian" topics like abortion, the family, homosexuality, now my heart is just truly torn in two over the brokenness of people who don't yet know the Lord. My motto (especially this past week) has become "I'm not trying to win arguments, I'm trying to win hearts". I've read almost all of your novels and I just wanted to let you know how much your writing has impacted my life —D.F.
On the suggestion of a friend, I just started reading your book about Heaven. It is truly one of the best books I've ever read! I'm only on chapter two, and I feel like I am gulping down your book with excited anticipation. —N.A.
Our family has been so blessed reading Heaven! My mother had a Bible group come to her home every week and the last book they were reading before she went to Heaven in April was Heaven. We took Dad to our house then (with alzheimers) until he died in November. The night before he died my husband, who was sleeping in his room, had a dream that my mom was in Heaven by a bright light and glorious music waving and jumping up and down calling him enthusiastically to join her.
After his funeral my brothers and sisters and I decided to read Heaven together and discuss it each week. I cant tell you what a blessing it has been. We all had so many misconceptions about Heaven and each chapter is so exciting for us! We have been drawn so much closer as a family, and we all feel more excited than ever to share with everyone around us about Christ and what He has done and what He is preparing for us! —L.T.
What the Heaven book has meant to me is absolutely immeasurable. I read it when first published to help me understand my dad's home There. Then, my eighteen year old son was killed instantly in a car crash. This book is on my phone, my kindle and iPad, and I have eleven in my bookshelf for people that will have a similar need to know. It's no idle boast that it's the single most important book [to me] other than the Bible. It probably saved my life. My mother went ahead after living a long life two weeks ago, and I could truly celebrate her being with my father and son. And, envy her too. I regularly read it to prepare for my arrival There. It should be required reading for every Christian, maybe everyone. —D.W.
I just completed a study on Heaven for the third time. I was so afraid of death that I cannot believe today the peace and calmness I have in my heart when I study about Heaven. As a young kid I would stand outside my mom’s bedroom door to make sure she was still breathing when she was sleeping. When I had young kids I would get up in the middle of the night to rest my hand on their backs to make sure they were still breathing. In my early twenties I had a full blown panic attack pacing for hours one night in fear of my own death. And then by the time I was 42 I had lost the whole generation that came before me. I have no living parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, brother-in-law, mother/father in law, and six years ago I lost my husband to lung cancer, making a total of 22 people that have left my life. Studying Heaven has been life changing. I used to go through all the motions of Sunday school and attended church every Sunday. But the words in the Bible were only words until I started to study, and Christ’s presence in my life started to become bigger, clearer and stronger. —G. S.
When I first read Heaven about six years ago, it proceeded to immediately drop me in the fast lane of my faith in Christ. I had always loved God, but so much about Him didn't make any sense. After delving into that study, everything started clicking. Heaven was the final piece of the puzzle for me. I constantly recommend it to others, and teach its concepts in my own novels. I can truly see the Holy Spirit's magnificence through this book and can't recommend it more strongly. The more people understand who God is through the concepts taught in Heaven, the more people will thirst to know Him more. —W.C.
I’m older than most, and I read a chapter of Heaven every morning and it just captures me spiritually and emotionally and makes me want to know more and read more the next day. It’s so well documented, I don’t have to go searching anywhere to verify the answers. I’m an avid reader and I can’t get enough of Randy’s books. —J. S.
One year ago today I was alone with my mother when she died. It was the worst thing I have ever been through, and I felt I wanted to take my own life to be with her. In my despair, I went to a book store that same day to get a coffee with family. I prayed and asked God to please help me understand, send me a sign. I saw your book Heaven as I was walking through, opened it in the middle, and began to read. It saved my life from doing something dumb and gave me peace. Thank you. —D.B.
I'm almost finished reading Heaven. This book has been heaven for me, and makes the most sense of any religious book I've read. Thank you for writing this book! —R.W.
This book really is the single most important book you will ever read besides the Bible. I have read this book several times, taught a year-long class on it, and have it in hardback, iPad, iPhone, iPod, kindle and DVD. I guess you could say I think it is important. My son died instantly in 2011 in a tragic accident. Had I not read and studied this book earlier in life, my suffering would have been immeasurably worse. I miss my son powerfully and I so long for that reunion. It's not hope, its certainty. Alex had questions about heaven before he died and I was able to answer those questions for him scripturally, confidently, and to his satisfaction. I will always be indebted to the author for that knowledge and ability. I know Alex was saved. I know where Alex is. And I know where I'm going. And I can hardly wait. He will be Alex and I will be me. We do live forever! — D. W.
Thank you, thank you, thank you. Your book on heaven was fantastic! Why didn't I see it all this time? Now when I read the Bible, it will be ever more exciting. What a future to look forward to in Jesus. I checked Heaven out of the library at church, and now I just have to purchase one at the Christian book store to give away! — D. K.
I have just finished reading Heaven and had to thank you for perhaps the best book I have ever read! Your writing method and research is absolutely amazing, and very needed to be read by the majority of confessing Christians today. I will be giving it to many of my lifetime friends, missionaries, and pastors. —G.
This book Heaven is wonderfully written and very powerful! I thought at first, as it was not a book about an actual vision of Heaven, that a mature Christian like me didn't need to rehash Scripture on the topic. But after previewing just a few pages, I saw it is so creatively written and so interesting (and anointed!) that I must get the book! And likely I will also get copies for my friends and family. It's one of those books that should be a staple in my heavenly library too! —C.T., Christian Journalist
I love the book Heaven! My church walked us through the death of our five-year-old son, and helped us turn our grief into a ministry that reaches out to parents grieving the death of a child. Families we reach out to are given a copy of Heaven. My Bible and time spend in prayer are the primary sources of my comfort, but I’m so thankful for Heaven and what a difference it made early in my grief. —H.P.M.
I am a seventy year old pensioner living in Cape Town, South Africa. A year after Jesus saved me in 1979, I knew deep in my heart that His Word had answered all my questions. Now, having read your book Heaven, all the questions I didn't know I had have been answered in your completely comprehensive and definitive book. Speaking as someone who has "lost all to gain Christ", and whose world has shrunk from being the captain of my own ocean-going yacht to living alone in a small bed-sitting room, I want to express my deepest thanks and appreciation for giving me such a new and wonderful eternal perspective on life on the New Earth. I am looking forward to meeting you there one day to thank you in person for so expanding my jaded and narrow world view, not to mention edifying and uplifting my spirit with hope for such an amazing and exciting future!
The fact that you have based all your insights entirely on Scripture makes Heaven a breath of fresh air in its authenticity, inspiring me to keep the faith and reminding me what a privilege it is to be a child of God. —A.R., South Africa
Your research and imagination have kindled in me a Jesus-passion only the flood could extinguish. —C.B.
I'm reading Heaven and God has opened my eyes through this book. God has led me to understand from this book that I will see him there in Heaven someday. —Anonymous caller from Guinea
Your book Heaven has made me even more eager for Jesus to restore the Earth (to the New Earth) so we can live with Him forever. You are very right when you say that when you are about to go somewhere you should get to know where you are going before you get there, so I am going to dedicate this time on Earth to learning about my final destination, the New Earth! —E.H
I just finished reading Heaven. It has profoundly changed my life. I had an embarrassingly dismal view of Heaven, and was reluctant to die and leave this earth. I desperately hated to leave beautiful places thinking I would never see them again. In the three days it took me to read your book my knowledge of Heaven now and Heaven to come, my understanding of and relationship with God, my view of this world, the people in it and opportunities for service have been transformed. For the first time in my life I am excited about my future Home, and galvanized to make the most of my days here on earth in preparation for it. Your book has awakened my future and my hope. —A.C.
Heaven was the first book I read, just days after burying my five-year-old son. Not to minimize the call God placed on my life, but reading that book got me totally focused on my precious child's current existence. When I made myself fully familiar with what God's Word has to say about Heaven, I was in a completely different mindset about my loss. The pain will never go away, but what comfort I feel when I focus on the goings on of heaven!
Four years later, I am strong enough to minister to other moms, and am co-hosting a conference for grieving mothers who will each be given, as my personal gift, a copy of the book Heaven. I'm so thankful I had my copy as early in my loss as I did, and just wanted to share what a difference it has made in my grief experience. —D.T.
My youngest daughter is 19. She is an “evangelist” for Randy’s book, Heaven. She’s ripped it from cover-to-cover, and recommended it to more people more times than I can count. She has one of our church elders currently reading it, and she has pushed it to the “New Year’s Resolution” list for me! She also follows Randy on Twitter. It’s pretty significant to grip the mind and heart of a nineteen-year-old college student. I will always be grateful! —W.M.
My sister was diagnosed with stage 3 ovarian cancer. In the fall of that year I gave her a copy of Heaven telling her that I had no idea where this journey would take us, but that her view of her future would be forever changed by this book. She never discussed the book with me and died three years later. I was at her home and found the copy of Heaven that I had given her. The dustcover was tucked into the last page of the next to the last chapter. I read it again and thanked God for such a great gift. I flipped to the front and inscribed to me was this: “I know now—can’t wait.” Thank you, Randy, for the gift you gave my sister. —B.T.
I bought my precious father (who served the Lord faithfully at a Bible school for 30 years) a copy of Heaven years ago and he read it and reread it. He loved Jesus faithfully and passionately all his life—and the book meant so much to him. It was on his bedside table the night he died and the verses he had underlined were read at his funeral. He totally loved the idea of a restored Earth—and he grew increasingly impatient to be with the Lord. At the age of 92 he got his wish. —H.M.
This is by far the most exhaustive study done on the topic of Heaven. I anxiously awaited this book for years and was even more impressed with the finished product than I imagined. It has strengthened me and my resolve to be a better follower of Christ. It is an exciting read and a must read for every Christian and everyone who just wants to know what happens next. —K.D.
In our Sunday school class we've been studying your book Heaven. The teacher mentioned today that your book saved his life. His son committed suicide several years ago and after his loss he read around a hundred books looking for solace, but found none until your book. Until your book, our teacher wasn't sure he wanted to live the rest of his life either. Your study has saved a life to live and teach for the kingdom. —P.H.
I have never done this in all my 70 some years but I just finished your book Heaven and found it to be absolutely awe-inspiring. At my age I think much about dying and heaven but never have I heard it or read it explained so in detail as you did in your book. I commend you for its content. I just think you are a genius and you have certainly been used by God to get out some details on heaven that we don’t hear about. – L.S.
My family and I want to thank you for the heavenly insight you offer in your books. My dad read Heaven many times over. He gave each of us kids a copy of these books, and presented an entire series at church on Heaven and living eternally here on earth. As the pastor of a large church, he was the epitome of heavenly perspective… and lived his life for that day.
In your book you write about Heaven using this analogy:
Let me suggest an analogy to illustrate the difference between the present Heaven and the eternal Heaven. Suppose you lived in a homeless shelter in Miami. One day you inherit a beautiful house, fully furnished, on a gorgeous hillside overlooking Santa Barbara, California. With the home comes a wonderful job doing something you’ve always wanted to do. Not only that, but you’ll also be near close family members who moved from Miami many years ago.
On your flight to Santa Barbara, you’ll change planes in Dallas, where you’ll spend an afternoon. Some other family members, whom you haven’t seen in years, will meet you at the Dallas airport and board the plane with you to Santa Barbara. You look forward to seeing them.
Now, when the Miami ticket agent asks you, “Where are you headed?” would you say “Dallas”? No. You would say Santa Barbara, because that’s your final destination. If you mentioned Dallas at all, you would only say, “I’m going to Santa Barbara by way of Dallas.”
When you talk to your friends in Miami about where you’re going to live, would you focus on Dallas? No. You might not even mention Dallas, even though you will be a Dallas-dweller for several hours. Even if you spent a week in Dallas, it wouldn’t be your focus. Dallas is just a stop along the way. Your true destination—your new permanent home—is Santa Barbara.
Similarly, the Heaven we will go to when we die, the present Heaven, is a temporary dwelling place, a stop along the way to our final destination: the New Earth.
Another analogy is more precise but difficult to imagine, because for most of us it’s outside our experience. Imagine leaving the homeless shelter in Miami and flying to the intermediate location, Dallas, and then turning around and going back home to your place of origin, which has been completely renovated—a New Miami. In this New Miami, you would no longer live in a homeless shelter, but in a beautiful house in a glorious pollution-free, crime-free, sin-free city. So you would end up living not in a new home, but a radically improved version of your old home.
This is what the Bible promises us—we will live with Christ and each other forever, not in the intermediate or present Heaven, but on the New Earth, where God will be at home with his people.
Dad flew to Dallas on March 12th of this year. Whether we meet him there or are reunited with him in Miami, we are all better prepared for that day. Thanks to your work, we are challenged to use every moment, dollar and thought to glorify God here on earth so we can send it all ahead of us to our eternal home. – M.P.
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