A heavenly quiz

Heaven.  No matter which way you turn it seems you can’t avoid a discussion, debate or dialogue about heaven these days.

What is heaven?  Where is it?  Who goes there, and maybe more importantly, who doesn’t?  Within the world of theology and ministry, Rob Bell’s newly released book Love Wins has caused a divisive uproar among many, and even resorting to calling Bell a heretic or universalist.  At the same time, another book written about a four-year-old’s trip to heaven and back, called Heaven is For Real, remains atop the NY Times Bestseller List after many weeks.

Maybe all this talk of heaven has got you thinking, wondering and questioning what exactly you believe – and why.  So just for fun, I put together a quiz with quotes by Billy Graham, Gandhi, Rob Bell and the Apostle Paul all related to heaven.  There are two quotes from each individual.  Without googling or breaking open your Bible, how many can you get right?

Who Said What?!??

  1. When I despair, I remember that all through history the ways of truth and love have always won. There have been tyrants, and murderers, and for a time they can seem invincible, but in the end they always fall. Think of it–always.
  2. Eternal life doesn’t start when we die; it starts now.
  3. I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven. Whether it was in the body or out of the body I do not know—God knows.  And I know that this man—whether in the body or apart from the body I do not know, but God knows—was caught up to paradise and heard inexpressible things, things that no one is permitted to tell.
  4. Those are decisions only the Lord will make.  It would be foolish for me to speculate on who will be there [in heaven] and who won’t. … I don’t want to speculate about that.
  5. When we open ourselves to Jesus’s living, giving act on the cross, we enter in to a way of life. He is the source, the strength, the example and the assurance that this pattern of death and rebirth is the way into the only kind of life that actually sustains and inspires.
  6. A man who was completely innocent, offered himself as a sacrifice for the good of others, including his enemies, and became the ransom of the world. It was a perfect act.
  7. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.
  8. I believe the love of God is absolute. He said He gave His Son for the whole world, and I think He loves everybody regardless of what label they have.

So, do you have your answers figured out?  No cheating!

Before I share the correct answers, you might be thinking – why put together such a silly quiz?  My reasoning is this – sometimes we get so staunchly FOR or AGAINST something without truly knowing why or how.  I believe that our God is a God who can handle the tough questions.  Our faith should be a faith that can handle the tough issues.  Heaven (and hell) is hardly black and white.  While it’s easy to jump on the bandwagon supporting or negating somebody’s views, I believe our faith should be robust enough to learn from many perspectives.  Does this mean embracing ideas that contradict the scriptures?  Not at all.  But it does mean that we can read people’s opinions, ideas, thoughts and questions about issues that aren’t clearly “defined” by the scriptures. It also means that sometimes we need to humbly admit, “I don’t know!” and be ok with that!  After all, isn’t that where faith comes in?

Whether the issue is heaven and hell, women in ministry, free will, sanctification, eternal security or a vast number of other contentious issues, I’d encourage you to read, discuss, pray and come to informed decisions yourself.

So, stepping off my soapbox, and opening the sealed envelope with the “Who Said What?!??” quiz answers…here are the correct “owners” of each of these quotes:

  1. Gandhi
  2. Rob Bell (Love Wins)
  3. Apostle Paul (2 Cor 12:2-4)
  4. Billy Graham (Newsweek interview, August ’06)
  5. Rob Bell (Love Wins)
  6. Gandhi
  7. Apostle Paul (1 Cor 15:26)
  8. Billy Graham (Newsweek interview, August ’06)

How’d you do?!  Which ones most surprise you?