If heaven is a compensation for all the stuff we wanted that we never had, that is one thing. But if the new heaven and new earth is our hope – and it is – it will make everything horrible we’ve experienced nothing but a nightmare. And as a nightmare, it will infinitely, correspondingly increase our future joy and glory in a way it wouldn’t have been increased if we’d never suffered.
That is the ultimate defeat of evil. To say that our suffering is an illusion or to say we will be compensated for our suffering is one thing. But to say that the suffering we experience now will one day be a servant of our joy does not just compensate for it, it undoes it.
‘Our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.’ There has never been an understanding of suffering that was more hopeful or encouraging.
– Tim Keller