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In a “nutshell,” this is what the book, “Will I See Him Again? (A Look at Pets in Heaven),” and the CD, are all about. Obviously, reducing 260 pages down to just 2 pages leaves out quite a bit of good information and many more scriptures, too! So go easy on me! OK?
From the Bible we know that it was God who made everything that exists. If it exists, He made it and, of course, that includes our pets. Not only so but, since He is a God of love (for “God is love” 1 John 5:8), He therefore loves all that He’s made, too. Psalm 145:13 (NIV) says, that the Lord is “loving toward all He has made” which would have to include all He has made, such as our pets! He looked upon it ALL and said that it was “very good” indeed (Gen. 1:31) and elsewhere He tells us that He made everything for His own pleasure (Rev. 4:11) and according to His own will. In other words, it’s what He wanted to do. It was His desire to make our pets into the lovable creatures they are and it actually pleased Him to make them the way He did. They please Him well in all they are and they have always pleased Him from the start.
We also know that He originally desired for them to live forever, for that was His desire for everything that He made—to last forever (i.e., Ps. 78:69; 104:5; Eccl. 1:4; 3:14). He never wanted them, or us for that matter, to just live for a few short years, get sick, and then suffer and die, being annihilated out of existence forevermore. Just because mankind chose to die doesn’t mean that’s what God wanted. The Bible still tells us (2 Pet. 3:9) that He is not willing that any should perish but that all would change their ways and have eternal life with Him. And He’s even provided the way to do it! And when He originally made our pets, they were also made to live forever.
Now, when it comes to considering why God would even want our pets to live again, there’s one very important thing that many seem to overlook for some reason, and that is the fact that God never changes. He says, “I am the Lord, I change not” (Mal. 3:6; cf. Heb. 13:8). He has always been what He is from eternity, and He always will be what He is forevermore. This means that, since He loved our pets when He made them, and since He desired them to live forever when He made them, that He STILL loves them and that He STILL wants them to live forever, for He hasn’t changed.
Now, while it’s true that He will do things differently from time to time, yet He Himself in His nature never changes. He is who He is and He’s always the same as ever. He is loving and kind to all His creatures, providing for them all they ever need (i.e., Ps. 36:6; 145:16; Mat. 6:26) and even being there for them when their time comes to die (Mat. 10:29). His nature is always the same. We humans change all the time but He doesn’t. In fact, that’s the problem for us. We changed the very moment that we disobeyed Him in the Garden of Eden and many today still choose not to love Him and not to live with Him in Heaven forever. But God has given everyone a free will and, for many, that’s their choice—I hope it’s not yours.
But as for our pets, and all else He has made, His love never changes and what He wanted for them in the beginning, (that is to live forever), He still wants for them today. Otherwise we would have to say that He changes—but He says He doesn’t. He’s always the same.
OK, so God made everything good and then man turned from Him by disobeying the only commandment that was given him—and her (Gen. 3). And when we did, God then had to place a curse on us just as He said He would (Gen. 3:16-17), and not on us only but on ALL the rest of creation that we were to have had dominion over, as well. God is also a just God and therefore justice must be done. So, all of creation suffered from the fall of Adam and Eve (Rom. 8:20). And all of creation died, or began to die, from that day forward, and that is why every one of His creatures is corrupt and suffers so and dies in the end, for all have come from the ground that was cursed (Gen. 3:17; cf. Rom. 8:18-23), even our beloved pets.
That’s why they have to suffer and die, too, at least for the time being. For man, who was the guilty party and who now has a choice, the curse has eternal consequences, if he rejects the pardon offered him. For the rest of creation, however, the curse of suffering and death is only a temporary one, one that will be remedied for them, for it wasn’t their fault—it was ours. It wasn’t for anything that they did but rather what man did that brought this curse upon the entire creation.
But, even though God is holy and just and therefore He must mete out the deserved punishment for the guilty, yet He is still a God of perfect and infinite love, too. And it was because of His love that He paid the price for our sins in the person of Jesus Christ by dying on the cross. He took all our sins upon Himself and suffered in our place so we would no longer have to die forever—unless we want to, that is! God will not force His love on anyone—they must want Him, too.
Anyway, the good news for our pets is this. Not only did Jesus bring about salvation for all humans who would want it but, by paying the price for all our sins, He also thereby removed the curse that was the result of those sins. That means that the curse of suffering and death that was placed on all the rest of creation has been removed and there is no longer any reason why they must die forever. Remember, animals and our pets never ever sinned in the first place, so they have no need to choose if they want to be redeemed or not. Just as they had no choice (Rom. 8:20) in being made subject to this futility, so they have no choice in being set free from it, too.
When you think about it, why should the Righteous Judge of all the universe actually pardon the guilty ones (us) and not at the same time also pardon the ones who are innocent (such as our pets)? That would not be real justice, would it? Would a perfect and just God do that which is not perfectly just? Why should the guilty be able to live forever (if they choose to) but the innocent still be annihilated into eternal oblivion? What kind of perfect justice is that? It doesn’t make sense. But God is infinitely and perfectly just—and He is only “good”--so He will have to do the right thing, right? Right.
And let’s not forget the language the Bible actually uses in speaking of the redemption that Christ has wrought for us. We read in Eph. 1:10 (ESV) that God’s plan in Christ was “to unite ALL things in Him, things in heaven and things on earth.” Col. 1:15-20 tells us that it was by the “blood of His cross” that Christ “reconciled unto Himself ALL things,” whether on earth or in Heaven! And that “all things” most certainly includes “all things” (such as our pets) doesn’t it? [see also Rom. 8:18-23]
So, in the end of the world, all of creation will be resurrected, including the earth and all that is within it. And that would mean the remains of animals and our pets will also be resurrected at that time. (Recall the passages we mentioned above in Eph. 1:10 & Col. 1:15-20.) But that’s not all there is to it.
Here’s the scriptural story:
At the end of the age there will be a time of judgment. Perhaps you’ve heard of it—it’s called Judgment Day. And on this day all human beings will have their bodies resurrected from the graves (John 5:28-29) to be reunited with their souls and they will stand before God to answer for all they’ve ever said or done, or even thought (Mat. 12:36-37; Luke 12:2; Rom. 14:10-12; 2 Cor. 5:10). Those who have accepted God’s free gift of eternal life through the price that has been paid will be invited to enter into His eternal kingdom. The rest will not. So, if their pets are living in God’s kingdom but they themselves are not, I guess that means they’ll never see them again (what a waste!).
Anyway, it will not only be human beings that go through judgment on that day. The entire creation itself will also go through a time of tremendous purging by fire (2 Pet. 3:7-13) when even “the elements will melt with fervent heat.” Though sinless, all that is corrupt and unholy will still have to be purged and cleansed from the earth. The eternal age that is about to begin can have no sin and corruption in it in order for God to return and be present therein. And that has always been His desire. It has always been His will to live with His creation on the very earth that He has created. When the Bible tells us of the New Heavens and the New Earth, it is NOT speaking about a “different” heavens and a “different” earth than the one we already have—what He has already made. It will be the same one—resurrected and renewed.
The Greek language has different words that are translated as “new” in the New Testament. When speaking of the new heavens and new earth, the word “kainos” is used, which does not denote a new and “different” creation but rather the same creation as being “renewed!” God says, “Behold I make all things new (Rev. 21:5).” He did not say, “I make all new things”! And there’s a big differnce there. It will be the same earth that will be resurrected into the “new earth,” and all that was within in it will, therefore, also be the same as it was—at least numerically speaking—including our pets. In other words, though my body (and yours) will be the same numerical body that is resurrected from the grave, yet it will not be the same in “quality,” but instead it will be changed into a “glorious” body such as the one that Christ now has (Phil. 3:20-21; 1 John 3:2). And the same will be true of the rest of creation, too. Christ, who has already risen is the “firstfruit” of man who will be raised at the end (1 Cor. 15:20-23), and man, in turn, has been given new life that “we should be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures” (Jam. 1:18), including animals, pets, etc., which are to be raised afterward.
So, then, after this judgment time, the earth and all that is within it, having been cleansed from its corruption by fire, and redeemed by the “blood of the cross,” will live once again as God has always intended it to live from the beginning. It will finally be cleansed and made holy once again—holy for the Lord’s return—for God cannot live with sin and corruption in His presence. His will will always be done and no one, not even Satan himself, will ever be able to say that they robbed God of His creation or were victorious over Him in causing His will not to be done. His will will be done.
But what about Heaven? Where does Heaven fit in in all this? Well, Heaven is a “place,” a real place, and it is where God is. But only God Himself is eternal. Not even Heaven has been around forever, as it, too, has been created. But where God is now is where Heaven is. And when God’s children die, they go to live with Him there. The Bible says (of people anyway) that for us to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord (2 Cor. 5:8)—and this is in Heaven—where God is now. But it will not always be this way. We will not live “up in Heaven” forever, for after the new heavens and the new earth are created, we find that God Himself, in the New Jerusalem coming down from Heaven, will descend to the New Earth and will live with us all there—right there on the New Earth! It will literally, and eternally, be “heaven on earth!” In the resurrection of the earth, then, even the bodies of our pets will have been raised from the dust, or the ashes of cremation, and will be reunited with their souls to live where they were always intended to live, too. God is, after all, their God, too.
Rev. 21:1-5 (KJV) says, “And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. And I John saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down from God out of Heaven, prepared as a bride for her husband. And I heard a great voice out of Heaven saying, Behold the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them and they shall be His people, and God Himself shall be with them, and be their God. And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful.”
So this is where we will finally, and eternally, be together. This is where and when we will finally be reunited with our long, lost pets and animals right along with those dear and precious loved ones and family we’ve longed to see again—and with God Himself, too, for He will dwell with us (including our pets) forever and be our God.
Note: More discussion on the topics of Articles such as this can be found in the book, "Will I See Him Again? (A Look at Pets in Heaven)," by Tom Waldron. The book is available from Amazon.com (see home page of Mybutchie.com for link). Also, please feel free to e-mail me with any comments or whatever you may have at: