So, in spite of what we’re told and taught today, environment is not enough to make one happy or good. Many believe all that is needed for society to be peaceful and prosperous is for there to be a perfect place for man to reside – an adequate, abundant environment.
The Revelator however had been given a very different view, and it was one which he expressed in no uncertain terms. He begins with the finest environment that could possibly be conceived – Heaven. He paints for us a picture of its unsurpassed perfection – pearly gates, jasper walls, streets of gold, crystal seas, luscious fruit trees, fountains flowing with living water and a population of holy angels. It’s absolutely stunning in its perfection.
Then another group is introduced into this perfect place – an company of unholy angels. But wait a minute, by what we’re told today, that really doesn’t make any sense. Think about it. They had every opportunity – perfect surroundings, godly company, anything and everything that one could ever ask for. However, in the end it wasn’t enough. They made a hell out of Heaven!
It really is a striking, sobering picture. For one thing, they were actually in Heaven. They were there, in the environment and abode of the Redeemed. They’ve seen the white robes. They’ve felt the spray of the fountains. They’ve basked in that light that never sets. They’ve tasted the fruit of those heavenly trees. And yet, they’re miserable. There’s unrest in Heaven. In that place of perfect peace they are at war!
Without peace with God Heaven would not be, could not be, Heaven. Not only could you not make it there, you would not even like it there. You see, its not enough that there are flowing fountains or a sparkling sea. Just because there are rich fruits, golden streets and pearly gates is no guarantee of peace.
If today you could have the place of God without finding peace God, would you willingly write your name on the log of that city? Don’t answer too quickly, for remember, Lucifer and the angels that followed him weren’t just promised to be in Heaven – they were there. Yet, in spite of that perfect place they were not pleased for they brought their own misery with them.
Think about that. All of the powers of nature had combined to make them happy; all of the powers of the mind were theirs already, yet their hearts found no rest. And since no rest was found in their heart they found no rest in Heaven. The crystal sea was stormy in their sight. The fountains were bitter on their tongue. The fruit of those heavenly trees tasted spoiled.
That’s the way that it would be for you were you to be able to be in the place of God without peace with God. If your soul had not found its rest in Jesus, it would find nothing in Heaven but conflict. It would be whispered through the trees, murmured by the streams, sung by the birds.
That’s why I say, don’t come without the wedding garment! Don’t come without the joy of the Lord which is your strength! Don’t come without an olive branch from the flood waters! For if His peace is in your heart on earth there will be no war in Heaven