What About That Mansion?

Photo by Nick Romanov on Unsplash

One Sunday my Sunday School class was talking about “mansions”. What brought up the subject was Jesus’ wonderful and familiar words in:

John 14:1-2 Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.

That stayed in my mind, and the Spirit of God led me to research these mansions. The word translated mansions or mansion is only found ONE TIME in the King James Bible. I used to assume that these mansions are literal buildings in Heaven where we will live. When I think of a mansion, I think of a place of ultimate contentment where my every need is met.

Word Study But what the King James translates as mansions is much more than a brick and mortar building. mansions is the Greek word μονή monḗ, {pronounced mon-ay’}, which means “a place to stay, a residence”. The Vines Expository Dictionary Usage Notes says of monḗ:

Primarily “a staying, abiding” (akin to menō, “to abide”), denotes an “abode” (English, “manor,” “manse,” etc.), translated “mansions” in John 14:2; “abode” in John 14:23. There is nothing in the word to indicate separate compartments in heaven; neither does it suggest temporary resting places on the road.

As the Vines notes, the same word is translated abode in verse 23.

John 14:23 Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.

When we do as Jesus says, then God the Father and God the Son will come and MAKE THEIR ABODE within you. Now I love that old song “Mansion Over The Hilltop”. You know it, don’t you?

I’m satisfied with just a cottage below
A little silver and a little gold
But in that city where the ransomed will shine
I want a gold one that’s silver lined
I’ve got a mansion just over the hilltop
In that bright land where we’ll never grow old
But walk on streets that are purest gold

A lovely old song. However, old songs are rarely written by Bible scholars. After studying this text, I really have come to believe that the mansionor abode that Jesus was speaking of was MUCH MORE THAN A BRICK AND MORTAR BUILDING. Let me ask you:

Why would we need a MANSION in Heaven?
Would having a MANSION make me happier than being with Jesus?
Would I be miserable in Heaven if your MANSION was bigger than mine?
What about location: would I be jealous if your MANSION was on the shore of the River of life, and mine wasn’t?
Would there be just a “Buffaloe” MANSION, or would
each one of us get a MANSION?

I honestly think the “MANSION” that Jesus is referring to is our glorified bodies.

When Jesus came to this earth, He had no property to speak of. Jesus told His disciples “The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head” (Matthew 8:20). And yet, Jesus was happy. I think we will be happy in Heaven, just living in our glorified bodies.

God Never Places An Emphasis On Owning Stuff

  • Did Adam and Eve have a MANSION? Not that I can find. Adam and Eve were made in the image of God.

Genesis 1:26 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness, and let them have dominion {over creation}

God put Adam and Eve in charge of the planet He created. God told them:

Genesis 1:28 … Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it …

God did not give Adam and Eve a MANSION.
He gave them a GARDEN, and they were happy –
At least, until they fell away from God.

Genesis 2:8 the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul. And the LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there He put the man whom He had formed …

Man was placed in a Garden east of Eden. God told man to “dress and keep the Garden” (Genesis 2:15). God told Adam he could eat the fruit of any tree in the Garden BUT of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil (Genesis 2:17). What does the Bible says of their lives?

Genesis 2:25 … they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.

Adam and Eve lived in a Garden, not in a mansion. They walked and talked with God. When Adam sinned, and did what the Lord told them not to do, the Bible says:

Genesis 3:8 … they heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden.

Adam & Eve didn’t hide themselves in their mansion,
but “
amongst the trees of the garden”.

Adam and Eve had happiness and peace, with plenty of food and no need of clothing, until they day that they stepped away from fellowship with God. The Bible says:

Romans 5:12 by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned

Not having a mansion did not cause Adam and Eve to be unhappy. What caused them – and us – unhappiness was their sin against God. Sin against God brings with it misery. Sin caused our first parents to be cast, not out of a mansion, but out of the Garden. I looked further for mansions in the Bible. When sin caused God to bring judgment on the whole earth,

Genesis 6:5-8 … God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. 6 And it repented the Lord that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart. 7 And the Lord said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them. 8 But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord.

  • Noah had no mansion – he had an Ark and God. Noah loved God. So when God told Noah “Build Me an Ark”, Noah did just as God said. God flooded the earth, “and the waters prevailed upon the earth an hundred and fifty days” (Genesis 7:24). Noah stayed in the Ark until God told him to leave it. Though the Bible says:

Genesis 9:29 … all the days of Noah were nine hundred and fifty years: and he died

  • What of Abraham, the Father of faith? Did he have a mansion? No, not at all. Abraham followed God where ever the Lord led him. The Bible says:

Hebrews 11:8-10 By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went. 9 By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise: 10 For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.

Word Study Abraham left everything he ever owned, and was happy following where ever God led him. Abraham lived in tabernacleswith the other fathers of our faith, Isaac (Abraham’s son), and Jacob (Abraham’s grandson). The word translated tabernacles is the Greek σκηνή skēnḗ, {pronounced skay-nay’}, which means “a temporary and portable abode, a tent of cloth or animal skins”.

Say with me skay-nay’

You’ll hear this word again. A mansion is permanent, and huge. Abraham and the fathers of our faith were not interested in the things of this world. They sought a city whose builder and maker is God. The Fathers of our faith were happiest when they were pursuing God, when they were going where He wanted them to go. They sought fellowship with the Lord.

God Never Cared About Brick And Mortar Mansions

Word Study When God revealed Himself to Moses on Mount Sinai, God did not ask Moses to build Him a mansion, but a TABERNACLE (Hebrew מִשְׁכָּן mishkân, {pronounced mish-kawn}), a tent, a temporary place to be that was portable. God told Moses:

Hebrews 8:5 … make all things according to the pattern shewed to thee in the mount {Sinai}[a quotation of Exodus 25:9].

Israel was to remain nomadic, going wherever God told them to go. It was not until Israel settled in the Promised Land of Canaan that God had Solomon, King David’s son, build a more permanent Temple in Jerusalem. It is interesting that, for a big part of Israel’s history, God showed Himself to the people through the Tabernacle of the congregation (Exodus 33:7-10), also called “The Tent of Meeting”. This was a temporary tent set up outside the camp where you could go and meet with God. When Moses entered the Tent, a Pillar of Cloud would descend, and God would talk with Moses at the door of this Tent (Exodus 33:9). After the formal Tabernacle was built following God’s directions (see Exodus 25-27), the temporary Tent of Meeting was no longer needed. God began to meet with people in the Tabernacle.

When David became King of Israel by God’s decree, He was one day sitting in his palace. David told Nathan the Prophet:

2 Samuel 7:2-7 See now, I dwell in an house of cedar, but the ark of God dwelleth within curtains. 3 And Nathan said to the king, Go, do all that is in thine heart; for the Lord is with thee. 4 And it came to pass that night, that the word of the Lord came unto Nathan, saying, 5 Go and tell my servant David, Thus saith the Lord, Shalt thou build me an house for me to dwell in? 6 Whereas I have not dwelt in any house since the time that I brought up the children of Israel out of Egypt, even to this day, but have walked in a TENT {אֹהֶל ʼôhel, o’-hel, temporary tabernacle} and in a tabernacle {מִשְׁכָּן mishkân, mish-kawn’, portable permanent residence}. 7 In all the places wherein I have walked with all the children of Israel spake I a word with any of the tribes of Israel, whom I commanded to feed my people Israel, saying, Why build ye not me an house of cedar?

God never asked for, nor needed a house, much less a mansion. God walked with Israel in in a tent and in a tabernacle. That is, He met with Moses in the temporary Tent outside the camp, and met with Moses in the better designed Tabernacle, the Tent of Meeting.

God “Tabernacled” Among His People

God would later allow Solomon to build a Temple in Jerusalem, but even Solomon realized that God did not stay in the Temple. He prayed:

1 Kings 8:27 But will God indeed dwell on the earth? behold, the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain thee; how much less this house that I have builded?

No Temple, nor Tabernacle, nor Mansion can contain all that is God. Our God is immense. God said:

Isaiah 66:1 … The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that ye build unto me? and where is the place of my rest?

No man could build God a mansion, nor a tent, nor a Tabernacle, nor a Temple that could contain God. God is immense. God is everywhere. No one can make God a place that He can stay in. God wanted to walk with man. God wanted to share Himself, personally and practically, with whosoever will. Man could not make a tent nor a temple that God could fully be present in. Meeting God in a tent as a descending cloud did not show us all that God is.

We are temporary – but God is eternal.
We are small – but God is immense.
How can the limited come to understand and relate to the unlimited?

The Bible refers to our earthly bodies as “tents”. The Apostle Paul said:

2 Corinthians 5:4 For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened: not for that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life.

Word Study The word tabernacleis once again the Greek σκῆνος skēnos, {pronounced skay’-nos}, which means A TENT. Our earthly bodies are TENTS that our souls dwell in. We groan daily, “being burdened. We want these mortal bodies to be swallowed up of life, to become more than they are.

There is not a day that goes by that I don’t pray for and look for the day when I am out of this broken, sinful flesh. And not just I, but every believer who has ever lived has looked forward to the time when this tabernacle, this fallen and failing body, will be replaced with a newer and better model. Medical cannot bring this to us. But God can. The Apostle reminds us as believers in Christ, saying:

2 Corinthians 5:1-3 For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. 2 For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven: 3 If so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked.

I am so looking forward to the day that, as the Apostle Peter said, I put off this my tabernacle. When this old tent you are looking at goes, the Apostle Paul said:

we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens”

Our souls, dear Christians, will one day go to a mansion. Not a building like we think of, but a glorified, sinless, wonderful new container for our souls. The Apostle said “when your bodies – your TENTS dissolve – you HAVE A BUILDING OF GOD, a HOUSE NOT MADE WITH HANDS, waiting for you in Heaven”.

You have a better, more improved, better than this current “tent” you occupy waiting on the other side of eternity. I believe that this new body is your MANSION.

Humans Occupy Tents, So God Made Himself A Tent

God provides us immortality through Jesus.

There is no Tabernacle, tent, or Temple that can hold God. So God made Himself a Tent. The Apostle said:

John 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

Word Study As I told you before, the word TABERNACLE or TENT is the Greek σκῆνος skēnos, {pronounced skay’-nos}. Where our text says that the Word “dwelt” among us, this is the VERB of the word skēnos, the Greek σκηνόω skēnóō, {pronounced skay-no’-o}, which means “to have your tent among, to abide or live in a tent or tabernacle”. Eternal God the Son became like us, clothing Himself in flesh as we are. The writer of Hebrews put it this way:

Hebrews 2:14-17 Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, {Jesus} also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; 15 And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. 16 For verily {Jesus} took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham. 17 Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people.

Eternal God the Son, infinite Creator of all things, through the operation of the Holy Spirit took upon Himself a tent just as we have. God lowered Himself for us. It was of Jesus that the Apostle spoke, saying:

Matthew 1:23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.

And the Archangel Gabriel told Mary:

Luke 1:35 … The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God

God made Himself a tent, a Tabernacle, so that He could dwell among us. God the Son came to this earth and took upon Himself flesh and blood so that He could make payment for our sins.

If you are a Christian by faith in Jesus Christ, I believe that you will one day be in something better than what you are in now. You will trade in this old tent for a Mansion, a perfect body, a sinless body. Beloved, we should not fear death, for we have a House in the Heavens, a perfect and sinless body, that God will give us.

That is so much better than a building – praise the Lord!

Do you know Him?
Have you received Jesus as Lord and Savior?

If you have received Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, this is what you will see one day. In Revelation chapter 21 John saw “a new Heaven and a new earth” (Revelation 21:1). The earth and it’s atmosphere will be made new. John saw “the New Jerusalem, coming down from God out of Heaven”. God will establish His rule on the earth forever. Then we read:

Revelation 21:3 … 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.

Revelation 21:3 is a fulfillment of the promise God gave in Ezekiel 37:27, “My Tabernacle Shall Be With Them”

What is the tabernacle of God? It is Jesus Christ, the One Who “Tabernacled among us” (John 1:14). Jesus Christ will dwell with us on a renewed, sinless planet. Jesus Christ will be our God, and we will walk with Him in perfect bodies and sinless souls forever. The Bible says of this new earth:

Revelation 21:22 … I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it.

There will be no temple in the new Earth, for we will meet with our God face to face. Sin will be no more barrier, for sin will be eradicated. The Bible says:

Revelation 21:4 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.

Who will be in this wonderful place? A place where there is “no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof”. Who will be there? People of all colors will be in that future glorious new earth. “And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it” (Revelation 21:23). It will be a place where “there is no night there” (Revelation 21:25). It will be a place of eternal peace, and joy. The Apostle warns us all:

Revelation 21:27 And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life.

Only those who are written in the Lamb’s book of life. Only those who have received Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord will be placed in that Book. Are you in the Book of life? If not, today is a great day to receive Jesus as He is. He is Savior. Jesus is the “Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). Jesus is the King Who will sit upon Heaven’s Throne. It is by His sacrifice that we are saved. Will you not call on Him? For “whosoever was not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the Lake of Fire” (Revelation 20:15). Do not delay – receive Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior today.

May God touch your hearts with His Word and His Holy Spirit this very day. Amen and amen.

About bibleteacherorg

A searching Pastor, I am looking for a people who love the Lord and love one another. Daily I pray for the Church. Most of what the world sees today is not the Church, but clubs pretending to be the Church. God is calling to Himself a people willing to be righteous, not self righteous, serving not served. I am called to pastor God's people, those who want to change the world by willingly and willfully following Jesus Christ. Only God is able to change the world, and we must follow His Christ. He is able! Praise His Name! Come quickly Lord Jesus!
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