Billy Graham has said that the "most important fact" about Heaven is that it will be far more glorious than anything we can ever imagine - and someday, those who believe in Jesus Christ will get to go there.
"One reason Heaven is glorious is because it is absolutely perfect," the 98-year-old famed evangelist said in a recent "My Answers" column. "In this present world we are surrounded by sin and decay and death - but it won't be true in Heaven. This world also is racked by violence and wars and natural disasters - but again, it won't be true in Heaven."
Another reason Heaven is glorious, the pastor said, is because it is the dwelling place of God: "We can barely imagine this - but it's true! The Bible says, 'Look! God's dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them' (Revelation 21:3)," Graham said.
Graham contended that the Bible says that in some ways, Heaven will be like this world - but it also says Heaven will be wonderful and perfect beyond measure.
"We won't feel like strangers; we'll finally be home," he said. "Why would anyone not want to go there?"
The greatest fact about Heaven, the Baptist minister concluded, is that we can go there.
"Only one thing will keep you out of Heaven, and that is your sin," he explained. "But Jesus Christ came to open Heaven's door for us, and He did this by taking upon Himself the judgment that we deserve."
According to statistics from the Pew Research Center, roughly seven-in-ten (72%) Americans say they believe in heaven, but just 58% of U.S. adults also believe in hell.
Earlier, Graham said Christians can know Heaven is real by the fact that Jesus came to the world to overcome death's sting, and because of His resurrection from the dead.
"From one end to the other, the Bible tells us that we were not made for this world alone," he said. "We were made for eternity and for God-and in our hearts we all sense this. The Bible says, 'He has also set eternity in the human heart' (Ecclesiastes 3:11)."
Ultimately, Jesus Christ came to overcome death's sting and open Heaven's door for us.
"Only one thing will keep us out of Heaven, and that is our sin," Graham said. "But Christ came into the world to conquer sin's power-and He did this by becoming the final sacrifice for our sins through His death on the cross."
"Death could not hold Him-and neither can it hold us!" he added. "Don't give in to hopelessness, but put your faith and trust in Christ-both for this life and the life to come."
In his latest book, "Where I Am", Graham said far too few people think about eternity and that he is "always grieved to have to interrupt a marvelous picture, such as eternal life in Heaven, to talk about another eternal place that Jesus calls Hell."
"It has no similarities to what is typically called home, nor is Hell a resting place, a holding place, or a graveyard. Hell is a burning inferno," he wrote.
"More than the description, I want to point out the greatest darkness of Hell-it is a place where Jesus is not," Graham said. "This is the great anguishing nightmare-to be eternally separated from the Son of God. It is unimaginable. For this reason alone, to be in Hell is the most terrible of all judgments."
He continued: "Let me tell you; the devil is not in charge of Hell, nor is it his headquarters. Satan is the "prince of this world" (John 16:11, KJV) and has taken up residence in many hearts. But He knows what the end is for him. He made his choice long ago and wants to take a world of people with him to Hell, where he will serve out his eternal sentence.
The Bible says that the everlasting fire was created for the devil and his angels (Matthew 25:41). Jesus said, 'I have the keys of Hades and of Death' (Revelation 1:18). The devil does not own Hell. It is not his home-it is his judgment."
Thankfully, for those who know Christ, death is like "going home," Graham said.
"No one who has died in the Lord would ever want to come back to this life. To depart and be with Christ, Paul said, 'is far better' (Philippians 1:23). The Bible says that we are strangers and pilgrims on earth, seeking a homeland, a place prepared for us by God (Hebrews 11:16) where the Lord will receive us into 'an everlasting home' (Luke 16:9). I have never known a man or woman to receive Christ and ever regret it."