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Please engrave what you’ve realized upon your heart to share fragrances of Zion.

Preparing for the Eternal World

The Bible says, “As for man, his days are like grass, he flourishes like a flower of the field” (Ps 103:15). This shows how short and vain human life is.

However, there is a new kind of life after our life on this earth; we are to return to the place we came from. When this life is over, everyone must go to the afterlife. Now, let us take some time to think about how much time and effort we are putting into preparing for the kingdom of heaven we are going to.

A servant’s advice


Once upon a time, there was a royal servant who won the king’s favor. The servant was good and faithful, and he was also naive and foolish in some aspect. The king was so pleased by his upright character that he trusted him and entrusted him with many of the administrative affairs of the country.

One day, the king ordered the servant to travel around the country and see how the people were living. Following the king’s order, the servant toured the whole country. After quite a while, he returned to the royal palace, and unexpectedly the king was sick in bed. The servant was very surprised and asked the king what had happened.

“I think it’s time for me to leave.”
“What are you talking about? You’re sick now. Where are you going? If you leave,
when are you coming back?
“If I leave now, I’ll probably go to the place of no return.”
“Why would you go to that place? Please don’t go.”

The king was referring to his death, for he was suffering from a serious illness. The naive and honest servant, however, did not understand what the king was talking about, and kept trying to dissuade him from going to the place of no return. The king told him again, “It’s not that kind of place where I can go if I want to and not go if I don’t want to. I must go there although I don’t want to.” Then the servant became so anxious that he asked the king lastly.

“If you’re going on a long journey, are you fully prepared to leave?”
On hearing this, the king could not say a word but lapsed into silence. Only then did he realize that he had never thought that the moment would come for him to leave this world and that he had not prepared for it at all.

Before setting out on a long trip, people pack their clothes and other necessities including money, passport, toiletries, and so on; they prepare many things for the trip carefully, so that they will not be in trouble in an unfamiliar place. However, many people in the world do not prepare anything for the world they are going to.

The span of one’s life is seventy or eighty years. Since life is so short, people feel very agitated and empty when a misfortune happens to them all of a sud-den. In the aforementioned story, the king indulged in a life of luxury in his high position every day, and he wasted his whole life without even thinking about preparing for life after death. Until the last moment of his death, he had not prepared anything. Likewise, if we put off preparing for the afterlife, the time will come unexpectedly for us to leave this world, before we know it (Ecc 9:12).

The way to the eternal world where everyone must go


When we consider this carefully, we come to realize how thankful we should be because God has established Zion as a refuge of salvation for us and has made Himself known to us. Living the life of faith itself—receiving God and building a sincere faith in the truth—is preparing for the eternal kingdom of heaven.

Those who do not believe in the eternal world are not preparing for that world. However, everyone must go there in due time; they cannot refuse to go whether they want to or not.

Life is in vain. The book of Ecclesiastes written by Solomon shows his frustration about the fact that the fate of humans and that of animals are the same, for both of them die.

Ecc 3:19–21 “Man’s fate is like that of the animals; the same fate awaits them both: As one dies, so dies the other. All have the same breath; man has no advantage over the animal. Everything is meaningless. All go to the same place; all come from dust, and to dust all return. Who knows if the spirit of man rises upward and if the spirit of the animal goes down into the earth?”

Considering this fact, let us think about the eternal world we will go to after this life. People are destined to die once and then face judgment. What matters is judgment.

Heb 9:27 Just as man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgment . . .

People must return to a certain place after their temporary residence here on this earth. On the way back, there are two paths: the path of judgment and the path of salvation. If we have to choose one of the paths, shouldn’t we follow the path of salvation and go to the everlasting kingdom of heaven where we will enjoy eternal life and happiness forever and ever?

When planning an overnight trip, there are many things we need to prepare. Now we are going on a long journey to the place of no return. Nevertheless, if we have lived without preparing anything, it is surely a big problem. Let us think about how many things we have prepared and what we are now preparing for our journey. Only those who think about the future and prepare for it will have the glorious future.

Thinking about the heavenly kingdom we will go to, we should pray to God, worship Him through service, and joyfully obey every word that God has given us. We should also make the spiritual world known to our family members, relatives, friends and neighbors, who are living without knowing anything about it, so that they can also fully prepare to go back to their “eternal home” (Ecc 12:5; 2 Co 5:1). In order for us to go to all people in the world and let them know about the kingdom of heaven so they can prepare for it, God has told us to preach the gospel (Ecc 12:13–14; Mt 28:18–20).

God is now preparing a place for us, His children, who will return to the eternal kingdom of heaven.

Jn 14:2–3 “In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.”

We have been cast down to this earth as a result of committing grave sins in heaven, our spiritual home, and we are now living a life of repentance as sinners who must continue to repent throughout life. We are given a chance to return to our Father’s house, the kingdom of heaven, by repenting of our sins while living in this world. Our body is only a tent which we live in temporarily; our eternal residence is in heaven (2 Co 5:1–4).

Faith of our ancestors who prepared for heaven


The time given to us in this life is a time of opportunity for us to prepare for the eternal kingdom of heaven. Realizing this fact, our ancestors of faith were temperate in all things and considered their sufferings on this earth as an inevitable part of their journey, longing for their heavenly home they would return to.

Heb 11:15–16 If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.

When we think of our home we will return to, we can have the opportunity to return and prepare for it. Keeping in mind that the eternal kingdom of heaven awaits us, we should find the meaning and the purpose of our life in saving the world and go back together with many people to the kingdom of heaven which God has prepared for us. In Hebrew 11 there is a continuous account of the faith of our ancestors who prepared for the eternal kingdom of heaven.

Heb 11:17–26 By faith Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice. He who had received the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son . . . By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau in regard to their future . . . By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter. He chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a short time. He regarded disgrace for the sake of Christ as of greater value than the treasures of Egypt, because he was looking ahead to his reward.

They prepared things one after another for their long journey by obeying the will of God with faith. They always lived by faith. Ultimately, living by faith is preparing for heaven.

Heb 11:6–10 And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that comes by faith. By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going. By faith he made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God.

Our ancestors of faith thought of themselves as aliens and strangers on this earth. Their life was preparation for the kingdom of heaven. The life we pursue is the same. We are going to our heavenly home someday at the end of this long journey. Before our departure, we need to fully prepare ourselves by having a sure faith and living in obedience to the pleasing will of God. That is our life of faith.

Those who prepared for heaven constantly lived in God’s love, and God’s love was always with them.

Ro 8:35–39 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

The saints of the early Church willingly endured hardships and persecutions; they diligently walked the path of faith even though there were much severer trials, with the assurance that nothing would be able to separate them from the love of Christ. When they were persuaded to deny Jesus Christ just by saying that they did not believe in Him so that they would escape being burned alive to death or being beheaded, they refused to be released and willingly endured all sorts of persecutions and insults for the sake of Christ. They proceeded toward the eternal kingdom of heaven without hesitation and were willing to martyr themselves; since they had such unyielding faith, the world was not worthy of them (Heb 11:36–38).

Let us proceed toward the glory that has been reserved for us


To spend our lives preparing for heaven like them, we should examine our faith. We need to reflect on ourselves to see if we have lived the life of faith along the path which God has guided us. Let us worship God in truth and follow God’s will, and live a life of repentance graciously, without forgetting that we are sinners.

Ro 8:12–18 Therefore, brothers, we have an obligation—but it is not to the sinful nature, to live according to it. For if you live according to the sinful nature, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live, because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory. I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.

The Bible clearly tells us that if we do not live according to the sinful nature but put to death the misdeeds of the body by the Spirit, we will live, and that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that we will enjoy in heaven. We are now preparing ourselves for that glory.

We should wholeheartedly give thanks to our Elohim, Heavenly Father and Mother, for calling us into the truth and giving us the hope and joy of heaven. I want us all to prepare ourselves thoroughly for the kingdom of heaven by preaching the gospel diligently, keeping God’s commandments faithfully, and achieving beautiful unity among us, brothers and sisters in Zion, according to the teaching of the Bible which is a spiritual preparation guide for us.

Let us think about the advice of the servant who asked the king what he had prepared, just before his death. When you leave on a trip, there are things you need to prepare. You are now leaving on such a long journey to the place of no return. Then, what have you prepared?

Like the king, people in the world become speechless if we ask them this question. The king just ran after the pleasures of this life without preparing anything for life after death. While he was living that way, he reached the end of life in a short period of time.

When the Apostle Paul knew that the time had come for his departure, he said, “I have finished the race. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness” (2 Ti 4: 6–8). By this he meant that he was fully prepared to go to heaven. Paul was persecuted and afflicted a lot for the sake of Christ when he went from place to place preaching the gospel; his life was a thorough preparation for heaven.

We, too, should fully prepare ourselves, so that we can confidently say, “Everything I have done in obedience to God’s will during my life of faith is what I have prepared for heaven.” Let us examine ourselves again to see how well we are prepared, and live by the Spirit and by faith till the end. By doing so, let us glorify God even more, with the conviction that nothing will be able to separate us from the love of Christ.

We should also preach the gospel quickly to the people who are not ready yet and help them prepare for heaven. I earnestly hope that all people in the world will repent and be saved according to the teachings of the Bible and will go to the eternal kingdom of heaven together which Father and Mother have prepared for us, so that they will enjoy eternal life and happiness. All our brothers and sisters in Zion! I would like to kindly ask you again to put your whole heart and strength into saving souls one after another and lead many souls to repentance and salvation, so they can join us in the eternal glory that Father and Mother have reserved for us.