Will We Know Each Other In Heaven?
God created each of us with an individual identity and, as individuals, we are not only valuable to God, but he knows us intimately. In Psalm 139, as just one example, David marveled at the intimacy of God’s knowledge of him as an individual.
Scripture also teaches that God created us to live in community with other human beings. The creation of the human family is the crowning glory of God’s creative activity: a community of individuals that is so intimately connected that, though they are individuals, it can also be said that they are one flesh (Gen. 2:24-25). This, of course, is a reflection of the profound mystery of God’s own nature, who exists as three unique persons who are at the same time a single entity.
Both individuality and community are part of God’s eternal plan for us. In the book of Revelation, the Apostle John received a vision that offers a glimpse into the eternal future. John saw a great multitude of people from every nationality and language gathered together around God’s throne in worship (Rev. 7:9-10). In his glimpse of these eternal saints, then, John observed that their unique identities had not been cancelled out; they retained even their national identity and language. At the same time they were all participating as one in a show of international and multi-ethnic unity that would be unimaginable in our war torn world.
Scripture also teaches that, not only will our individual identities remain intact when we are in the presence of the Lord, but we will be more ourselves than we have ever been. The story of humanity begins with the declaration of God’s purpose in creating us: “Let us make man in our image” (Gen. 1:26). As God’s purposes continue to be unfolded through the revelation of the Scriptures down the centuries, the glorious scope of that initial declaration is brought more and more into focus. It was not frail Adam, who represented God’s ultimate purpose for humanity, but the second Adam, Jesus Christ. He, Paul says, is “the image of the invisible God” (Col. 1:15). He is the “firstborn among many brothers” and God’s intent is to conform all who trust in Christ into his likeness (Rom. 8:29).
The long and short of it, then, is that we will not only recognize each other, but we will recognize each other as God has always intended us to be: healed from the disfiguring effects of sin and clothed in the glory of Christ!
Pastor Jon EnrightJuly 7, 2018