Author(s): Ian K. Smith
Christians often view heaven as their "future home"--but God's plan is actually to live forever with his people on a renewed earth. Beginning with the creation of the heavens and earth and ending with the awe-inspiring picture of the New Jerusalem descending to earth, the storyline of Scripture reveals God's commitment to the physical world. What's more, an understanding of God's commitment to renew and restore this earth connects what Christians learn on Sunday mornings with what happens the rest of the week, infusing all good earthly endeavors with dignity, meaning, and significance. This anticipation of God's cosmic renewal has the power to shape the mission of the church as God's people discover eternal purpose in the seemingly "earthly" and "unspiritual" facets of everyday life.
“A vivid picture of how this earth matters to God—our work, our communities, and the physical world.” — Scott B. Rae
“Ian Smith has written an eminently readable account of the biblical testimony to our eternal home—a home with resurrection bodies in a renewed heaven and earth. His careful analysis of common but ill-informed references to ‘going home’ as merely a departure from this earth, rather than a return to a renewed earth, are clear, cogent, and well argued. This concise biblical theology of death, afterlife, and resurrection should be an encouragement to every Christian reader as they grasp the fullness of the hope that awaits the people of God.” – Glenn N. Davies, Archbishop of Sydney
“Christians have a particular understanding of the world we live in because we believe that it has been created by God. We must take care of it. Ian Smith provides a theological underpinning for the kinds of actions that are required if we are to fulfill our creation mandate. This book is an important contribution to a necessary debate, and I recommend it highly to all who have a serious interest in the subject.” – Gerald Bray
“When we are away from home, we long for home. But where is home for the Christian? In this insightful biblical theology of ‘home,’ Ian Smith helps us see that this world, and even heaven (as an intermediate state), is not our home—we’re just passing through, as we await our eternal home of the new heavens and the new earth. A great book to be read for the journey home.” – Jonathan Gibson
Ian K. Smith is the principal of Christ College, Sydney, where he also teaches Greek and New Testament. He has also served in parish ministry and as a missionary in the Pacific island nation of Vanuatu. He speaks regularly at churches, conferences, and other venues.