A. There are three Heavens. See 2 Cor 12:2-4 where Paul went to the third heaven.
1. First Heaven - Genesis 1:6-9 "And God called the firmament Heaven..." This firmament (the earth's atmosphere) consists of air, and the clouds.
2. Second Heaven - Genesis 1:14-17. The second heaven is filled with the planets, stars, comets, supernovas and nebulas that are outside our atmosphere, and yet do not reach to God.
3. Third Heaven - This is where God dwells (Matt 6:9; Ps 113:4,5). It is not anywhere near this planet (Acts 7:48,49). It is where born again believers go when they die or are taken to at the time of the rapture (1 Thes 4:15-17; John 14:1-3).
B. The qualities and characteristics of Heaven
1. Heaven is a real place (Rev 4:1-3; Col 3:1,2). It is not a "state of mind," or state of “non-existence” (ie, Buddhist “nirvana”)
2. It is a holy place (Ps 20:6). "Now I know that the LORD saveth his anointed; He will hear him from his HOLY heaven…"
3. Heaven is a joyful place (Luke 15:7,10). There is joy among the angels over sinners that repent.
4. Heaven is a place of no trouble. It has no death, sorrow or pain, "And there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more PAIN, for the former things are passed away" (Rev 21:4).
5. Its size is immeasurable (Jer 31:37)
6. Our place in Heaven is in a city (Heb 11:16) called the NEW Jerusalem (Rev 21:15-27). A furlong is 1/8 mile. So, it is 1,500 by 1,500 by 1,500 miles! Truly, there is a lot of room there!