Shall We Know One Another in Heaven?

Ephesians 3:14,15; Exodus 33:17

I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named.

And the LORD said unto Moses…Thou hast found grace in my sight, and I know thee by name.

AMY CARMICHAEL (1867-1951): Shall we know one another in heaven?

C. H. SPURGEON (1834-1892): I have heard of a good woman, who asked her husband, when she was dying, “My dear, do you think you will know me when you get to heaven?” “Shall I know you?” he said, “why, I have always known you while I have been here, and do you think I shall be a greater fool when I get to heaven?” I think it was a very good answer. If we have known one another here, we shall know one another there.

AMY CARMICHAEL: I do not think anyone need wonder about this or doubt for single moment. We are never told we shall, because, I expect, it was not necessary, for if we think for a minute, we know. Would you be yourself if you did not love and remember?―We are told that we shall be like our Lord Jesus―and does not He know and love and remember?  He would not be Himself if He did not, and we should not be ourselves if we did not.

J. C. RYLE (1816-1900): I want to examine the question, “Shall we know one another in heaven?” Now, what saith the Scripture on this subject? This is the only thing I care to know. I grant freely that there are not many texts in the Bible which touch the subject at all.

D. L. MOODY (1837-1899): If you turn to that wonderful scene that took place on the Mount of Transfiguration, you will find that Moses, who had been gone from the earth 1,500 years, was there; Peter, James and John saw him on the Mount of Transfiguration; they saw him as Moses; he had not lost his name. God says, “I will not blot your names out of the Lamb’s book of life,” Revelation 3:5…We have names in heaven; we are going to bear our names there; we will be known.

WILLIAM JAY (1769-1853): Did not Peter, James, and John know Moses and Elias?

MATTHEW HENRY (1662-1714) It was said in Matthew and Mark that Moses and Elias “appeared to them;” But in Luke’s gospel it is said that they “appeared in glory,” to teach us that saints departed are in glory―Moses and Elias appeared to the disciples; they saw them, and heard them talk, and, either by their discourse or by information from Christ, they knew them to be Moses and Elias; glorified saints shall know one another in heaven.

C. H. SPURGEON: And mark the good company they sit with. They are to “sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven,” Matthew 8:11. Some people think that in heaven we shall know nobody. But our text declares here, that we “shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob.” Then I am sure that we shall be aware that they are Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob. Would not that be a dreary heaven for us to inhabit, where we should be alike unknowing and unknown? I would not care to go to such a heaven as that. I believe that heaven is a fellowship of the saints, and that we shall know one another there.

MATTHEW HENRY: Abraham gave up the ghost…and was gathered to his people,” Genesis 25:8. If God’s people be our people, death will gather us to them…Holy society is a part of the felicity of heaven; and they on whom the ends of the world are come, and who are most obscure, shall share in glory with the renowned patriarchs.

JOHN TRAPP (1601-1699): All the saints shall sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, having communion with them, not only as godly men, but as Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. And if with them, why not with others?

J. C. RYLE: We shall see all of whom we have read in Scripture, and know them all, and mark the peculiar graces of each one. We shall look upon Noah, and remember his witness for God in ungodly times. We shall look on Abraham, and remember his faith; on Isaac, and remember his meekness; on Moses, and remember his patience; on David, and remember all his troubles. We shall sit down with Peter, and James, and John, and Paul, and remember all their toil when they laid the foundations of the Church.

JOHN CHRYSOSTOM (347-407): We shall point them out, and say, “Lo, yonder is Peter, and that’s Paul, and there are the prophets.”

C. H. SPURGEON: I have often thought I should love to see Isaiah; and, as soon as I get to heaven, methinks, I would ask for him, because he spoke more of Jesus Christ than all the rest. I am sure I should want to find out good George Whitefield—he who so continually preached to the people, and wore himself out with a more than seraphic zeal. O yes! We shall have choice company in heaven when we get there.

WILLIAM JAY: It has been asked, “Shall we know each other in heaven?” Cease your anxieties.

ADAM CLARKE (1760-1832): Believers in the Lord Jesus Christ on the earth, the spirits of just men made perfect  and all the holy angels in heaven, make up but one family, of which God is the Father and Head.

J. C. RYLE: They that enter heaven will find that they are neither unknown nor unexpected…Let us hear what the apostle Paul said to the Thessalonians: “I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him,” 1 Thessalonians 4:13,14. There would be no point in these words of consolation if they did not imply the mutual recognition of saints. The hope with which Paul cheers wearied Christians is the hope of meeting their beloved friends again.

PHILIP DODDRIDGE (1702-1751): These very scriptures assure us we shall meet with them again; for they and we being with the Lord, we must be with each other. What a delightful thought is this! When we run over the long catalogue of excellent friends which we are rash to say we have “lost,” to think―each of us―“I shall be gathered to my people.”

RICHARD BAXTER (1615-1691): I know that Christ is all in all; and that it is the presence of God that makes Heaven to be Heaven. But yet it much sweetens the thoughts of that place to me that there are there such a multitude of my most dear and precious friends in Christ.

AUGUSTINE (354-430): Heaven is the perfectly ordered and harmonious enjoyment of God―and, of one another in God.

WILLIAM GURNALL (1617-1679): It was a sweet speech of a dying saint that he was going to change his place but not his company.


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