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I was in shock. Now what should I do?
I was in shock. Now what should I do?
What do you see in your mind's eye when you hear the word 'heaven'? Do you see transparent people floating on clouds and playing harps? Or do you imagine a perpetual praise and worship service, singing 'Holy, Holy, Holy' for all eternity? This often-promoted Christian view of eternity doesn't even appeal to the savedâ€"much less to the unsaved. But is this the true, biblical picture? Not even close. After his father died, author Steve Hemphill began searching the Bible for glimpses of heaven, anything to give him comfort about his father's new home. My Search for the Real Heaven is the culmination of seven years of studying, meditating, and cross-referencing biblical findings and is unique in its Bible-based evaluation of eternity. Find the real heaven with Steve Hemphill.
Steve Hemphill owned a technology company in Northeast Texas for over twenty-five years. He is a graduate of Abilene Christian University in Abilene, Texas. A deacon in his church, he has long been active in teaching Bible classes and doing community service projects. Visit his website at www.prayerthoughts.com.
The Story Begins 15
Memories of Home 19
What Might Be: Arrival 22
What Might Be: Five Earths of Scripture 29
Chapter 1 Literal Versus Symbolic 33
Dad's Special Sayings
What Might Be: A Tangible Heaven
Chapter 2 Prophecy Indications 57
Dad Was a Bible Scholar
What Might Be: Being in Covenant with God
Chapter 3 Satan's Strategy 91
Dad Was a Man of Integrity
What Might Be: The True Location of the Kingdom
Chapter 4 Purification by Fire 115
Dad's Attitude toward Others
What Might Be: Dad Visits Lazarus and the Rich Man
Chapter 5 Resurrection and Our New Body 139
One Last Handwritten Note from Dad
What Might Be: Seeing What God Sees
Chapter 6 Connecting Eternity, Heaven, and New Earth 167
Dad Was a Math Teacher
What Might Be: The Hall of Pictoglyphs
Chapter 7 God Promotes a Reward System 199
Dad Enjoyed Today But Focused On Eternity
What Might Be: A Place in the Capital City
Chapter 8 Reunion 223
My Brother Kendal's Memories of Dad
What Might Be: The Welcome Party
Posted October 24, 2009
Steve Hemphill was inspired to write this by the purest of intentions, a desire to know more about where his father will be. Hemphill was very close to his father. At his father's death he had to come to grips with Heaven. How strong is his belief in Heaven? When he and his brother found a thick sealed envelop after his father's death, the writing on the outside of the envelop said that if they held this in their hands AFTER he had died that they should destroy it. They made their decision on what to do based on what their dad would say to them when they saw him again in the resurrection. More of us should make our decisions based upon similar reasoning. Additionally, a series of what he felt were providentially inspired events led him to start something he had never really thought of doing in the past, writing a book.
In this book on Heaven, he has written very thoughtfully and provocatively. He goes to the core of what our beliefs are on the matter. Is Heaven a plane of existence far up in the sky where our spirits will float with the clouds while we sing Kumbaya and master the art of harp playing or not? Hemphill takes the position, with a plethora of biblical support, that Heaven will be located in a place very different than many have thought.
Interspersed with his MANY scriptures which have led his thoughts, are also some very interesting thoughts on God's covenant with men and Biblical prophecy. Hemphill takes a very literal view of the majority of the scriptures that he uses. Although I did not necessarily agree with all of his points, they were certainly respectable and worthy of consideration. This book does a very valuable thing, it makes you think. He also makes a VERY good case for a six day beginning of things in the Garden.
Things you will see addressed here are: What does Earth burning up have to do with Heaven? Will there be anything left of Earth after the fire? Are there animals in Heaven? Will there really be NO tears? What will we remember when we get there? Will our rewards all be the same? Will we truly have mansions? Will we be singing and worshiping so much that we have no other activities to do? There are many more subjects as well.
Finally, along with the factually based material, I thoroughly enjoyed the fictional interludes. There are sections at the ends of each chapter dealing with that chapter's subject matter in a "what might be" format. In these interludes, Hemphill's father, Jamie, is led and given insight by his angelic helper who gives him an ongoing orientation concerning what Heaven is all about.
This is a heart-felt book which was written with heavy reliance upon God's Word, prayer and the most wonderful motivator of all, love; in this case a son's love for his father. I heavily recommend reading this book and am pleased to be its first reviewer for Barnes and Noble.
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Posted October 22, 2010
In "My search for the Real Heaven" Steve Hemphill explores a subject that Christians often tend to avoid - a discussion of the life in the hereafter. Heaven is the ultimate goal for the believer, yet we spend little time talking about it.
Hemphill brings this topic to life and provides insights into God's deep and powerful love. You will feel a sense of inner peace as you read about this wonderful place God has in store for you!
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Posted December 23, 2010
"My Search For the Real Heaven" by author, Steve Hemphill addressed so much more than the heavenly realm. There were Scriptural issues to ponder and sort out. (I love that in a book.) There was a lot of practical life application backed up with Scriptures.
The description of the heavenly city of Jerusalem in Revelation was vivid. The city is 1400 miles X 1400 miles ( which would go from my house to New York City) and either cubed-shaped or pyramid shaped going up 1400 miles. (The earth's atmosphere is confined to 500 miles from the surface of the earth.)
This book urged me to study Scriptures for myself. I highly recommend reading this book to those who have biblical questions of all kinds.
Elaine Littau, author
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