By Daniel E. Parks Pastor,
Sovereign Grace Baptist Church
74 Estate Cane Carlton
Frederiksted, Virgin Islands, US, 00840
Some religionists seek converts by asking “Would you like to know how to go to heaven when you die?” If you do, they
coax you to do what they say will save you, and assure you that you will go to heaven when you die. It is not unusual to see
such converts living like the devil and a child of hell until they die. But they are assured that they will then go to heaven to be
with Jesus as children of God, because someone told them so.
No such thing happened in God’s Word. You will not find a Biblical preacher asking sinners if they would like to know
how to go to heaven when they die. And all who live like the devil and a child of hell go to hell to be with the devil.
I will not ask you “Would you like to know how to go to heaven when you die?”—for I am not a peddler of worthless
hell insurance or spiritual fire escapes.
But I will ask you this question: “Will you go to heaven when you die?”
And I have Scriptural warrant for doing so. The Holy Spirit asks, “Who may ascend into the hill of Jehovah? or who may
stand in His holy place?” (Psalm 24:3). He then answers His own question: “He who has clean hands, and a pure heart, who
has not lifted up his soul to an idol, nor sworn deceitfully” (v 4).
None will go to heaven—Jehovah’s hill and holy place—except those who are described by these four characteristics:
First and second, you must be holy in your deeds and motives—one who has “clean hands, and a pure heart.” “Hands”
represent deeds (Ecclesiastes 9:10, 2:11). “Heart” represents thoughts and motives (Proverb 23:7a; Matthew 5:19). Hands and
hearts that are “clean” and “pure” have been washed from their sins by the cleansing blood of Jesus Christ (Zechariah 13:1;
1 Corinthians 6:9-11; Hebrews 9:14; Revelation 1:5). They received this purification through faith in Jesus Christ (Acts 15:9).
Afterward their motives and deeds are holy.
Third, you must be holy in your desires—one “who has not lifted up his soul to an idol.” To lift up your soul to something
is to set your heart or mind upon it (as the Hebrew term is rendered in Deuteronomy 24:15). To lift up your soul “to an
idol” (unto vanity in KJV) is to set your heart upon a worthless thing, and to make your desires to be regarding it. You must
not set your heart on iniquity (Hosea 4:8) or riches (Psalm 62:10) or other earthly things (Colossians 3:2), or a manmade god.
Rather, you must set your heart upon Jesus Christ (Psalm 25:1) and heavenly things (Colossians 3:1f).
Fourth, you must be holy in your speech—one “who has not...sworn deceitfully.” Your speech must be godly, honest and
faithful. You must not take God’s name in vain, nor be a liar or perjurer or deceitful speaker.
None will go to heaven but they who are holy in their motives and deeds, and desires and speech.
Will you go to heaven?