Many years ago I was given a booklet that claimed certain Christians would have positions of great benefit and joy in heaven. The rest of the saved would be in heaven, but would not have the joy of being always in the presence of God. Certain religious groups teach that only a select few will enjoy the New Jerusalem, while most will live in a new earth. Does the Bible teach that certain saints will have higher positions, better mansions, more importance or greater joy in heaven than others?
The Bible teaches of a time coming when Jesus will reign over the world from Jerusalem. Jesus’ earthly kingdom is not heaven or eternity. Jesus’ kingdom is an empire that will cover the earth and last for a thousand years. During His rule over the world, certain faithful disciples of Jesus will be given positions of leadership and responsibility in His kingdom. Some will be entrusted with greater positions of service in Jesus’ millennial kingdom. Jesus’ empire will never cease, but the thousand year kingdom will end with another rebellion from Satan and the total destruction of the universe as it currently exists. After the final destruction of the universe, God will create a new earth and new heaven. The new heaven and new earth are the places of eternal bliss most often described when one talks about heaven and eternal joys.
The Bible does not give much information about what things will be like in heaven. What it does say does not give any indication that there are different levels in heaven. Sometime after death, God’s servants are rewarded for their faithfulness in service to Him. However, the Bible indicates that these rewards are not kept but are given back to Jesus as an act of worship recognizing that He alone is worthy to be praised. (Revelation 4: 10) In the eternally perfect universe, heaven, the Bible doesn’t say anything at all about certain people having positions of special privilege or rank. The clearest teachings in the Bible about the eternal state are found in Revelation 21 and 22. Describing the saved who inhabit heaven, Revelation 21 says, ” Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.” Revelation 22 says, “And his servants will serve Him, and they shall see His face.” It seems that in heaven those who are saved will have equal status as God’s servants and equal access into His presence. All will share equally in eternal bliss. None will be in greater joy and none will be closer to God than others. There will not be any low level Christians nor VIP saints in heaven.