W. Austin Gardner
Heaven is a real place
The idea that heaven is everywhere and nowhere is not according to Scripture. Heaven is God’s habitation, and when Christ came on earth He taught us to pray: “Our Father which art in heaven” (Matthew 6:9).
This habitation is spoken of as “the city of eternal life.” Think of a city without a cemetery—they have no dying there. If there could be such a city as that found on this earth what a rush there would be to it! How men would try to reach that city! You cannot find one on the face of this earth.
A city without tears—God wipes away all the tears up yonder. This is a time of weeping, but by and by there will be a time when God shall call us, where there will be no tears. A city without pain, a city without sorrow, without sickness, without death. There is no darkness there. “The Lamb is the light thereof” (Revelation 21:23). It needs no sun, it needs no moon.
The paradise of Eden was as nothing compared with this one. The tempter came into Eden and triumphed, but in that city nothing that defileth shall ever enter. There will be no tempter there. Think of a place where temptation cannot come. Think of a place where we shall be free from sin; where pollution cannot enter and where the righteous shall reign forever.
Think of a city that is not built with hands, where the buildings do not grow old with time; a city whose inhabitants are numbered by no census, except the Book of Life, which is the heavenly directory. Think of a city through whose streets runs no tide of business, where no hearses from day to day move slowly with their sad burdens to the cemetery: a city without griefs or graves, without sins or sorrows, without marriages or mournings, without births or burials; a city which glories in having Jesus for its King, angels for its guards, and whose citizens are saints!
We believe this is just as much a place and just as much a city as is New York, London, or Paris. We believe in it a good deal more, because earthly cities will pass away, but this city will remain forever. It has foundations whose builder and maker is God. Some of the grandest cities the world has ever known have not had foundations strong enough to last.
Dwight L. Moody, Heaven (Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers, 1995).