Sabbath School Lesson for December 19-25, 2020

Don’t miss my YouTube channel for daily highlights of the lesson.


These questions about our future in heaven will be explored this week:

  • Why do we even need to consider what happens after death? (Sunday)
  • How new and different will be the experience of heaven? (Monday)
  • What kind of mysteries will be examined for an eternity? (Tuesday)
  • How will we engage in learning activities in heaven? (Wednesday)
  • Who will be our teacher in the earth made new? (Thursday)


The pursuit of higher education will continue into eternity. What happens to us after death is something we should examine in God’s word. The Bible reveals a lot about our heavenly home, giving us much to look forward to beyond the grave.

“Heaven is a school”, we find in the book Education, by Ellen G. White, p. 301. It is the ultimate graduate school, and we should consider any learning on this earth to be a prep school for that higher education that awaits us in the hereafter.

Memory Text: ” ‘Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him’ “ 1 Corinthians 2:9 NKJV

This verse thrills us, as we consider the beautiful experience that awaits us in heaven. However, taken in context, the verse seems to refer to the mysteries of God that are open to us even now. The next verse, v. 10, says “But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God.”

The rest of chapter 2 talks about what some of those deep things of God are. Paul speaks and writes extensively about Christ and Him crucified. The mysteries of God are mentioned several times in Paul’s epistles, but Colossians 1:26, 27 is most helpful in understanding Paul’s statements. It uses the phrase, “Christ in you, the hope of glory”.

The many things we will learn about Christ will be enough to last an eternity. The wonders of His character will thrill us, as we are able to commune and learn from Him in the earth made new.

Sunday: The Fate of the Dead

Blaise Pascal, a famous French scientist and philosopher of the seventeenth century, expressed an intriguing thought. He pointed out that no matter what our life on earth consists of, we are all eventually going to die. Considering our short life here then, we should be even more interested in what awaits us beyond the grave, since eternity is so much longer and permanent.

The New Testament mentions eternal or everlasting life many times. In the light of the cross and Christ’s miraculous resurrection, eternal life is the only thing that makes sense, if we are to believe in the sacrifice Christ has made for us.

If we were just living for what this old world of sin has for us, the price of Calvary would be quite an overpayment. There must be something beyond the grave for us as well. After all, Christ Himself promised this eternal destination while He dwelled with us personally those few short years on earth.

Bible Verses to Consider:

John 6:54, John 4:14, and John 3:16

  • Why is it important to remember that Christ Himself promised us eternal life?
  • How do these promises confirm our belief in the existence of heaven and life after death?

1 John 5:13 and 1 Timothy 1:16

  • Why did the apostles later proclaim the same promises of eternal life?
  • Why do we need to be continually reminded of our eternal existence?

Monday: A New Existence

The Bible is clear that our life after death  is not just a continuation of life as we know it here and now. The new existence that awaits us will not just be new, it will be many times better. The absence of pain, suffering, and death, and the sorrow they bring, will be replaced with experiences far superior and lasting. This, of course, happens when Jesus comes again in the clouds with all His holy angels. See Acts 1:10, 11 and Revelation 1:7.

2 Peter 3:10-13 describes the total destruction that comes upon this old planet. Perfect righteousness will then at last be achieved in God’s new kingdom, and we shall dwell with God peacefully forever.

Peter 3:11 reminds us though of our present situation by saying, “what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness.” Titus 3:7 reveals how we achieve this godliness–“that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.”

Bible Verses to Consider:

2 Peter 3:10-13

  • Why is it necessary for the old world to be destroyed, and the new one to replace it?
  • How long does this destructive fire last, and why is that information important?
  • What does the manner of this destruction tell us of God’s character?

Revelation 21:1-6

  • What do we learn about the new earth from these verses? What will it be like?

Titus 3:7

  • Why and how are we justified and what does our justification mean when it comes to our eternal destiny?

Tuesday: Then Shall We Know

There are so many fields of learning and specialties to explore on this earth. One can study biology, geology, astronomy, physics, chemistry, literature, history, anthropology, and the list goes on and on. There can be no doubt that with the whole universe as our university, we will have all the learning opportunities our hearts desire. And the brain capacity required to master them all.

Of utmost interest will most likely be finding the answers to our theological questions. Getting to know the character of God firsthand will help us understand why things happened like they did on this earth. Either to us individually, or to mankind in general.

It is no wonder that there will be so much praise and adoration given to our Father in our heavenly home. Every discovery will magnify our appreciation for His character of loving care and merciful justice.

Bible Verses to Consider:

1 Corinthians 13:9-12

  • Why is it impossible to have full knowledge and understanding in our lives now?

Luke 12:7

  • How intimately does God know us, and why?

1 Corinthians 4:5

  • Why is sin and darkness hidden from us now and when will it all be revealed?
  • Why must we wait for Jesus to come before we fully understand all the hidden mysteries there are in the universe?
  • Where does our praise come from? Why?

Wednesday: The School in the Hereafter

As we struggle with trials and disappointments in this life, it’s important to remember that…

  • everything now is temporary–“but for a moment”, as it says in 2 Corinthians 4:17.
  • A new earth is coming (Revelation 21:1),
  • we will eat from the tree of life again (Revelation 2:7),
  • and God will wipe away all our tears (Revelation 7:17).

The Bible can only give us glimpses and hints of the glorious experiences that await us in heaven. But we have the promise that it will far surpass anything our finite minds can now grasp.

Perhaps the most notable learning opportunity will be to see the scars in the hands and feet of our Savior, and know that He paid the price for our redemption. We are there because of His loving sacrifice. God’s love will be the reason for any joy and happiness that become ours in that heavenly home.

Bible Verses to Consider:

2 Corinthians 4:17-19

  • How can all our affliction be considered “light”, when it feels so heavy to us at the time?

Revelation 21:1, 2, 2:7, and 7:14-17

  • What will you appreciate most about heaven?

Thursday: The Great Teacher

Jesus did a vast amount of teaching while on earth. It was a major part of His ministry. He taught about Himself, God’s kingdom, salvation, and how we should treat others.

Certainly, we can look forward to more lessons from the Master Teacher when we get to heaven. He will then provide more details about His controversy with Satan, causing us to feel more and more devoted to His service and to praise our heavenly Father with greater enthusiasm than ever before.

What captures our hearts the most is the thought of His supreme sacrifice in our behalf. We will never cease to wonder at the love He has shown to all of His creation. In spite of the rejection that He endured on earth, He allowed Himself to suffer an excruciating death, in order to save us from ourselves and Satan’s vicious attacks. See Zechariah 13:6 and Isaiah 53:3, 5, 8.

Bible Verses to Consider:

Zechariah 13:6 and John 20:24-27

  • Why do you think Jesus still has the scars where He was wounded?
  • Why will it be important for us and all the universe to see them when we get to heaven?

Isaiah 53:3, 5, 8

  • What more might we learn from these events when we get to heaven?

Friday: Conclusion

Jesus was clear about how He felt about our earthly life, compared to the one we will enjoy in heaven. He admitted that we would have a cross to bear when we follow Him now (Matthew 16:24). But sharing our burdens with Christ makes them lighter (Matthew 11:29, 30).

Our trials are a form of schooling for us. They often teach us lessons that could not be learned any other way but to experience them. We will appreciate heaven all the more, after enduring the many hardships there are in this life.

Nothing makes heaven so sweet as the presence of the Lamb of God. We will forever learn from the Master Teacher, and explore the mysteries of the universe with the Creator of the universe. Our minds will be sharper than they’ve ever been, and our education in heaven will far surpass any school of higher learning on this earth.

Expect to advance your knowledge, improve your capacity to learn, and be filled with praise for the heavenly Father who made it all possible.

Next Week: Sabbath: Crisis of Identity (first week on the study of Isaiah)

To read the Sabbath School Lesson Quarterly or see more resources for its study, go to