On this Sunday morning, I’d estimate that tens of millions of our fellow citizens said the first six words of the Lord’s Prayer either mindless of what they were saying or believing in what they said. This in late July 2013. Heaven. A place in the sky. But where? On a comet, an asteroid, another planet? On a galaxy far away? Giant spaceship?
John Morreall from the Religion Department of The College of William and Mary wrote a short essay on this topic and his thesis follows these five points:
1. Heaven is a place.
2. Only what is physical is located in a place.
3. God is not physical.
4. So God is not located in a place.
5. So God is not located in heaven.
Bingo. But then, is it comforting to believe that there is a place called Heaven and that Our Father lives there and one day we will be joined with him [if we are good little children]? Streets paved with gold. Milk and honey flowing from fountains. Oh, the rapture!
Then again, He isn’t a he as point #3 above notes. Further, ‘he’ isn’t our father. And who is our mother?
…on Earth as it is in Heaven. There it is again.
No doubt this prayer was comforting to believers before the telescope peered ‘through’ Heaven and found stuff out there. Whoa! Back up. Through Heaven? Yes, sadly, through.
Voyager I and Voyager II are currently at the edge of our Solar System and, so far, have not found Heaven. Sadly, those alive 2000 years ago believed [thought] that Heaven was just up there, just on the other side of the dome onto which the stars, sun and moon were attached.
“Earth calling Heaven! Come in, Heaven!”