On the way back from our time away we visited Blenheim Palace, the only non-royal palace in England. The building and grounds are truly magnificent and we learnt (several times over) that their origin dated back to a great victory by forces led by the Duke of Marlborough over the French army at Blindheim, Germany in 1704. Queen Anne subsequently gave the Duke land and money to build a ‘suitable house’ in recognition of his victory.
Having previously visited Blenheim Palace many years ago I have sometimes thought of the Christian’s home in heaven along similar lines – that we each look forward to our own eternal Blenheim Palace, especially based on the KJV translation of John 14v2a “In My Father’s house are many mansions …” It’s a lovely thought isn’t it – but it’s not what Jesus said! The word “mansions” should be translated “dwelling places” or “rooms”, i.e. places to live within our Heavenly Father’s large house. Clearly a house can’t have many mansions – but it can have many rooms.
My thinking was further corrected as I wandered around Blenheim Palace – the (current) Duke of Marlborough was nowhere to be seen; he was probably securely away from the general public in his private quarters. The true joy of heaven, however, will be that God “will live with them” and “be with them” (Revelation 21v3). We will all dwell in loving fellowship together, living in a place prepared by Jesus for each of us, with God in our midst. How much better, actually, than each of us having a separate mansion!
Of course, our eternal home is all attributable to the greatest ever victory of Heaven’s Prince – the Lord Jesus Christ Himself – over all the forces of evil at the cross. Wonderful accommodation is now provided, in Heaven’s mansion, for all who truly believe, with the entrance price totally paid in full.
Peace and Grace