Many of us have grown up in the “I’ll Fly Away” crowd, getting much of our eschatology (what we believe about end times) from our hymns rather than the Bible, which in turn influences what we believe about how we are to live here and now. If this place is going to blow up and we’re going to fly away, then nothing here really matters, right? Unfortunately, this way of thinking is still pervasive in many churches and schools. Josh Ross and Jonathan Storment grew up in this same vein, have since been convinced of a greater reality of living in the kingdom now, and have provided an easy to read book on why and how that can and should happen. This is Bringing Heaven to Earth: You Don’t Have to Wait for Eternity to Live the Good News.
“Part 1: A Reintroduction to Heaven” begins emphatic, but lighthearted, sports jokes and jabs not spared (just look past them!). Ross and Storment make a simple case for the real connection between heaven and earth and God mission of resurrection and redemption, not rapture. “Part 2: When Heaven Celebrates” gets a little heavier—if that can happen when talking about partying!—but only insomuch as the authors continue drawing the reader into the importance of the topic at hand. Once in “Part 3: Life in the Light of Heaven” the reader should have a broader grasp of what it means to live for God’s glory and the sake of others right now and give up on any ideas that may keep us waiting until we’re in “heaven” to be joyful in this life.
This can be a great primer for anyone struggling with what to do with the good news of the kingdom of God and how heaven, hell, and earth may fit therein. It may be especially helpful for those who are steeped in dispensationalism, a particular theological stream espoused by much company I’ve kept in recent years. If you’re looking for a quick and easy read to whet your appetite to go even further in living as a kingdom citizen now, this can help. Be strong and courageous; do not be afraid!
*Disclaimer: I was contacted by the WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group, a division of Penguin Random House, and received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. I was not paid, nor was I asked to write anything specific, whether positive or negative.