Atty. Adriel B. Gran

Where is the Father’s house? Is it located in heaven as what tradition teaches?

Failure to study God’s word rightly divided oftentimes leads one to commit doctrinal blunder. This is so even if one is a self-confessed dispensational proponent.

Because of such failure, the end-victim would be the lowly members, who defended so much of their spiritual nourishment from the mercy of the so-called “pastors” or “teachers”, whom they traditionally looked up to as the “gifts” or the “guardian” of truths in the church.


Tradition teaches that the “Father’s house” mentioned in John 14:1-3 is in heaven or it refers to heaven for that matter. This is even one of the Sunday School teachers’ favorite to the extent of pointing to the open space up in the sky to portray heaven.

The worse thing of the teaching is its application to the members of the Body of Christ as their ultimate hope. In applying, they said that, “Christ is now in heaven preparing the place, and in the rapture, he will come again and take us all there.”

That sounds inviting, but is that really what the scriptures taught? Is it true that the Father’s house is in heaven? Is heaven and rapture in the mind of Christ when he made mentioned about his Father’s house? And, Is that what the writer, the apostle John perceived when he wrote the same?

To be contented, let us study John 14:1-3 in the light of the apostle Paul’s principle of “rightly dividing” (2 Tim. 2:15).

The passage says, “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my FATHER’S HOUSE are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.”

Please be guided that Christ in this passage was speaking to his 12 apostles and not to the members of the Body of Christ. The narration was made right after the celebration of the Passover, the Lord’s Supper (Jn. 13:1), the washing of the disciple’s feet (vs. 2-20), the prediction of his betrayal by Judas (vs. 21-35), and his denial by Peter (vs. 36-38). In fact, it was because of these series of predictions that Christ said, “Let not your hearts be troubled…”

To emphasize, Christ here was not speaking to any gentile believer nor made an iota of reference to the members of the Body of Christ, who in the first place was not in existence at this point in time.


So, where is the house of Christ’s Father then? The best thing to do is to ask the writer himself and not just surmise where is it from. In Jn. 2:13-16, John wrote;

“And the Jews’ Passover was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem, and found IN THE TEMPLE, those that sold oxen and the sheep and doves, and the changers of money, and overthrew the tables; and said unto them that sold doves, Take these thing hence; make not MY FATHER’S HOUSE an house of merchandise”.

The truthfulness of John’s record was corroborated by his contemporaries like Mathew (Mt. 21:12-13); Mark (Mk. 11:17); and Luke (Lk. 19:45-46), except that in Mark, it was presented in a question form.

“And he taught, saying unto them, Is it not written, MY HOUSE shall be called of all nations THE HOUSE OF PRAYER? But ye have made it a den of thieves?”


When Christ was dealing with the temple merchandisers, he also reminded them of what the Old Testament had said about the temple. In the book of Isaiah, God called his house: MY HOUSE OF PRAYER”.

“Even them will I bring to my holy mountain, and make them joyful IN MY HOUSE OF PRAYER: their burnth offerings and their sacrifices shall be accepted upon mine alter: FOR MINE HOUSE shall be called a HOUSE OF PRAYER for all the people” (Isa. 56:7).

God’s house is a house of prayer so that making it a “den of thieves” was a blasphemous mistake. The same thing happened when God told Israel through Jeremiah.

“Is this house, which is called by my name, become a den of robbers in your eyes? Behold, even I have seen it saith the Lord” (Jer. 7:11).


The Holy Scripture is lavished with proof that King Solomon built the temple “unto the name of the Lord his God”. His father David could not build the same “for the wars which were about him on every side” (1 Kings 5:3). The King said,

“And behold, I purpose to build an house unto the name of the Lord my God, as the Lord spake unto David my father saying, Thy son, whom I will set upon thy throne in thy room, he shall build an house unto my name” (1 Kings 5:5).

King Solomon then prepared 30,000 labor force; 70,000 persons to carry the burdens; 80,000 to carry stones; and 3,300 supervisors out of all Israel (1 Kings 5:13-16).

The construction of the temple commenced 480 years after the children of Israel came out from the land of Egypt (1 Kings 6:1), and finished forty six years later, as what the Jews recalled before Christ (John 2:19-20).

The temple was well-engineered by God himself. He gave to King Solomon the complete details of the plan, including its dimensions.

“Now the house which the King Solomon built for the Lord, its length was 60 cubits (90 ft.), its width 20 (30 ft.), and its height 30 cubits (45 ft.). And the porch before the temple of the house, twenty cubits was the length thereof, according to the breadth thereof of the house; and ten cubits was the breadth thereof before the house” (1 Kings 6:2-3).

When the temple was finished, King Solomon called it “the house of the Lord” (2 Chro. 7:11).


As part of God’s detail, King Solomon also built chambers around the temple.

“And against the wall of the house he built chambers round about, against the walls of the house round about. Both of the temple and the oracle; and he made chambers reound about, and the third was seven cubits broad; for without in the wall of the house he made narrowed rest round about, that the beams should not be fastened in the walls of the house” (1 Kings 6:5-6).

These chambers were built in the three stories, which side chambers became wider all around the temple.

“And the side chambers were three, one over another, and thirty in order; and they entered into the wall which was of the house for the side chambers round about, that they might have hold, but they had not hold in the wall of the house. And there was an enlarging, and a winding about still upward to the side chambers: for the winding about of the house went still upward round about the house: therefore the breadth of the house was still upward, and so increased from the lowest chamber to the highest by the midst” (Ezek. 41:6-7).

Now, what were these chambers for? These chambers were used as mansions or dwelling places for the singers, priests and all the keepers of the charge of the altar (Ezek. 40:44-46).


No wonder that Christ promised the twelve (12) apostles with mansions for these men will be serving him at the establishment of the Kingdom. When apostle Peter asked Christ what should they have since they (the 12 apostles) have forsaken all and followed him, Christ answered him, “Verily I say unto you, that in the regeneration when the son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon the twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel” (Mt. 19:28).

After the 1,000 years Millennial Kingdom, the Lord will create a New Heaven and New Earth where no temple could be seen (Rev. 21:22).

There in the New Earth, Israel will still offer sacrifices, but only spiritual sacrifices unto the Lord. But since there will be no more physical temple in the New Earth, the chosen people will just stay in the foursquare City of the New Jerusalem, serving as priests to other nations in the kingdom of God, which would be reigned by Christ forever.


The inhabitants of the foursquare City (Rev. 21:16) will be living there for eternity. This was what God promised to the nation Israel concerning the keeping of God’s statues and laws. The IF-THEN conditional principles were the requisite for them to obtain God’s dwelling place.

“Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, AMEND your ways and your doings, and I WILL cause you to dwell in this place…IF ye oppress not the strangers, the fatherless, and the widow, and shed not innocent blood in this place, neither walk after other gods to your hurt: THEN will I cause you to DWELL IN THIS PLACE, in the land that I gave to your fathers, for ever and ever” (Jer. 7:3,6,7).

Since the chambers or mansions were prepared by God for the priests and their workers, it follows that such were prepared by God to the nation Israel only, since they alone were called God’s peculiar treasure, a “kingdom of priests” and a “holy nation”.

“Now therefore, IF ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, THEN ye shall be a PECULIAR TREASURE unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine: AND ye shall be unto me a KINGDOM OF PRIESTS, and AN HOLY NATION. These are the words which thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel” (Ex. 19:5-6).

As we said, only the nation Israel was chosen by God to offer spiritual sacrifices. That means they alone are the ones worthy to dwell in God’s spiritual house. This teaching had embolden the Jews specially when the apostle Peter said,

“Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, AN HOLY PRIESTHOOD, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ” (1 Pet. 2:5,9).


Nowhere in the Holy Scriptures that the gentile nations were promised physical mansions, in the physical kingdom, in the physical land of Israel. The apostle Paul told us, “For our (members of the Body of Christ” conversation is IN HEAVEN; FROM WHENCE ALSO WE LOOK FOR THE SAVIOR, the Lord Jesus Christ (Phil. 3:20).

The apostle Paul assured members of the Body of Christ to be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air and be with the Lord in heaven forever.

“For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord” (1 Thes. 4:16-17).

This great and momentous meeting is to be preceded with the changing of our vile bodies with incorruptible ones for us to be immortal in heaven with Christ.
“Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality” (1 Corinthians 15:51-53).

If the kingdom believers are waiting for the Second Coming of Christ to establish his promised Kingdom on earth (Mt. 6:9-10), we the members of the Body of Christ are waiting for the “blessed hope” (Tit. 2:13).

For us now, the house of God is “… the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth” (1 Timothy 3:15), and not that mansion ever prepared by God for his chosen nation, the nation of Israel.

To end, let me sup up this issue by saying that the Father’s house mentioned by apostle John has reference to the existing temple built in Jerusalem and NOT heaven as what most believers think today.

What made present day teachers say that the Father’s house means heaven is their failure to distinguish the distinctive ministry of the apostle Paul as the apostle of the gentiles.

For these, we should reiterate the key in understanding the bible, that is, “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15).

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