I feel very grateful to know what will happen to the real me when I die. Although I have pondered this question through my life, as I am sure most of us do, I have found a peaceful clarity in the last two years.
Much of what I found came in the research I did for a full year after the death of my dog Sundance. I used various scholars notes, and commentaries, and a variety of concordance information, and of course, The Bible. In addition, I found much help in a wonderful book called “Heaven” by Randy Alcorn
I prayed as I searched, asking for guidance and clarity, and have learned my eternal fate, beginning at my physical death (on this earth, as it is)
Heaven is, as Mr. Alcorn beautifully notes, a “temporary perfect place my soul and spirit will go to at death. I know that heaven is temporary because our ultimate home is on the new earth, which God will create from this earth. It is the restoration we are promised in the books Isaiah, 2 Peter and Revelations. This is why heaven, although perfect, is temporary, a paradise awaiting the ultimate paradise and the New Jerusalem to come following the white throne judgment. (See Revelations chapter 21)
My body is actually to be a part of my real self forever, and this is the reason our bodily resurrection takes place. Restoring our physical bodies is part of God’s redemptive work, the restoration of his creation, which is to be part of our real self on the new earth. Our “real selves” will include our physically restored self, redeemed and joined to our soul and spirit, and we will live in perfect bodies, on a perfect earth, forever.
This is all part of God’s promise to restore, renew and redeem his creation: ‘ and he who sat on the throne said, Behold I make all things new (Rev 21:5 NIV) To paraphrase Mr. Alcorn, it will be the new from the old, fully restored to the intended perfect creation, as God intended
Jeremiah said that after his physical death, body having returned to dust, “in his flesh” and “with his own eyes” he will see God.
It is exciting and uplifting to know we will live and enjoy the wonderful things and more of our lives as we have been (physical, soul and spirit) without the bad, hurt heartache and suffering