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Can We Be Sure We Are Going To Heaven?

Woman admiring sunset from mountain top,Woman admiring sunset from mountain top

When I die, I want to go to Heaven, but how do I know if I will end up in Heaven?

The question of Heaven, and what it takes to get there is on the mind of many believers. Can I know… How can I be sure…But what if I…? Can we be sure we are going to Heaven? God wants us to know we are going to Heaven. He wants us to live like we are going to Heaven. In fact, God has given us the Holy Spirit as our down payment of things to come. Let’s listen to what the Apostle Paul said about this down payment.

For while we are in this tent, we groan and are burdened, because we do not wish to be unclothed but to be clothed instead with our heavenly dwelling, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life. Now the one who has fashioned us for this very purpose is God, who has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come. Therefore we are always confident and know that as long as we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord. — 2 Corinthians 5:4-6 (NIV)

Billy Graham writes about Heaven in this excerpt from The Heaven Answer Book. You’re invited to read his responses to these two questions below.

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How good do we have to be to get into Heaven?

And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. 1 John 5:11-12 (NKJV)

The answer may shock you— but the truth is that we will never be good enough to go to Heaven on our own. Why is this? The reason is because God is absolutely pure and holy, and no evil can ever enter His home. Just one sin will keep us away from His presence — and no one can claim to be sinless. We are born in sin (Romans 5:12); we are sinners by nature.

The Bible says, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” Romans 3:23 (NIV)

God doesn’t take our good deeds and bad deeds and weigh them against each other; if He did, He’d be letting us into Heaven with our sins. God’s standard is nothing less than perfection. We may think we’re good enough—but if so, we are filled with pride, which is a sin.

The Bible says, “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.” 1 John 1:8 (NIV) But Jesus preached repentance to receive eternal life in Heaven (Mark 1:15), and it is through His shed blood that our sins are forgiven, covered by His good- ness, and this is why those who believe in Him will be received into Heaven.

Suppose you had a barrel of water and it had been filtered and distilled until no impurities remained. If someone asked you to drink it, you wouldn’t hesitate. But suppose someone put a drop of raw sewage in it. Would you drink it? Of course not. The same is true with sin. This is why God sent His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, to earth to redeem us by His love and His sacrifice. Jesus was without sin because He was God in human flesh— but on the cross all our sins were transferred to Him, and He took the judgment we deserve. Don’t trust in yourself and your good works, but turn to Jesus and trust Him alone for your salvation. It is the life-changing decision that will settle once and for all your place in Heaven. Don’t miss what the Lord has in store for those who love Him and are willing to let Him be the Master of their lives.

How did Jesus’ death make it possible for us to go to Heaven?

By His death Jesus paid the penalty for our sins. This alone gives us everlasting life with Him in Heaven. We are so used to sin that we easily forget just how serious it is in the eyes of God. Every sin we commit is an act of rebellion—a deliberate renunciation of God’s rightful authority over us. But sin is serious for another reason: it ravages our souls, bringing heartache and brokenness into our lives. Most of all, it cuts us off from fellowship with God.

Because of God’s great love for us, however, He provided the way for us to be forgiven and cleansed of our sins—and, ultimately, to spend eternity with Him. We could never cleanse ourselves; sin’s stain is too deep. But God made our forgiveness possible by sending Jesus Christ into the world as the final and complete sacrifice for our sins. On the cross, Jesus took the divine judgment that you and I deserve. He died in our place.

For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. 1 Peter 3:18 (NIV)

Do you want freedom from sin’s penalty? Believe that Christ died for you. He suffered for you. He won the battle over sin for you. He rose from the grave and was victorious over death so that you can live forever. But you must respond by receiving Him into your heart by faith and by committing your life to Him without reserve. He is waiting for you to confess your sins, to surrender yourself to Him, and to make Him Lord and Master of your life. He is preparing a place in Heaven for all those who will come to Him in faith and complete submission. Don’t delay. Make sure of your salvation by turning your life over to Him now.

Your Turn

Have you ever doubted whether or not you would go to Heaven? Scripture gives us many promises of what determines our salvation. What are your favorite passages of Scripture relating to salvation and Heaven? Come join the conversation on our blog! We would love to hear from you! ~ Devotionals Daily