Will there be eternal families in heaven?
In this ongoing series, we attempt to answer questions given to us recently from a searching Mormon. Today, we attempt to answer the question,
"What is the relationship of families eternally?"
The love of family is one of our greatest joys on earth. The bonds of healthy family relationships provide meaning and purpose to a person's life. The thought of being together as a family for eternity in heaven is a fervent prayer and desire for many people.
When speaking of eternity, God must always be a central part of the discussion. He is not only the Creator of the heavens and the earth, but He also created every human being. His ultimate desire is to have a relationship with those He created and for each soul to dwell eternally in His presence. For these reasons, our relationship with God supersedes any other relationship we have on earth.
Because of having a right relationship with God, those who have placed their trust in what Christ already done for us receive the following blessings:
- They will dwell eternally in His presence.
- They will live in glorified bodies without the curse of sin.
- They will dwell eternally in a place of perfection.
Eternally existing in the presence of God without any sin will be a state of profound joy. There will be no more sorrows, tears, suffering, or the need to fight off temptation. The primary focus of our existence will simply be basking in the presence of God. In the fullness of joy where guilt and regret are no longer a part of our being, I believe we will rejoice with who is there and not have sorrow over who is absent. (Click to read "If someone we love does not make it to heaven and we do, will we know that in heaven? If so, how will we feel?")
The Bible suggests there will be a redefinition of family in heaven. A noted expert on the Bible wrote, "The ordinary family relationships we know here on this earth will not apply in heaven."* Faith enters a person into a family-like relationship with other believers. Many times in the New Testament, believers are referred to as brothers and sisters. The Bible also mentions that a marriage between husband and wife will no longer exist in heaven (Luke 20:35). The concept of an eternal family will have an entirely different meaning in heaven. Every soul throughout generations will be gathered together and considered a part of God's family and eternally exist as His dear children.
Our most important thought about heaven ought to be about simply being there. By faith alone, we receive the full forgiveness of our sins and receive the status of being perfect in God's eyes right now. By trusting in Christ's perfect obedience instead of our own, we receive a right relationship with God. In the meantime, we have the opportunity on this earth to not only enjoy family relationships, but also appreciate the encouragement families can bring to have and maintain a right relationship with Christ. Ultimately, the greatest blessing a family can bring to each other is the encouragement to believe in Christ's work on our behalf.
* "Heaven and Hell" by Dr. Siegbert Becker. Questions from a Searching Mormon Series
- The Godhead- the LDS perspective makes the most sense. Why did Christ cry out and pray to his father even calling him "Abba" in desperation and why was he called the son of God if he was God? Who is God? 2. Why have I had so many spiritual experience reading the Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenant and Pearl of Great Price? 3. Why do most Christian churches I have attended the last year seem so messy and broken? 4. How could temple worship be wrong? It seems so selfless. 5. Is the plan of salvation wrong? 6. Was there really no pre-existence? There seems to be substantial Biblical support as well as much western and eastern culture support in literature for it but I haven't talked to a Christian who believes in it. 7. What is the relationship of families eternally? 8. Are we children of God? If so how? 9. Who is Satan, how is he associated with God and what role does he play?