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P. S. Wilmot
The verse from which the phrase derives is Revelation 21:4
And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; 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.
This speaks of a future event, the transfer of God’s headquarters, so to speak, from Heaven to Earth. 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.
With that being said, for those that are in heaven now, we can rightly say their condition is without sorrow.
The absence of tears in Heaven, however, have been wrongly interpreted throughout history, in most theology circles, it is viewed as the unawareness of our love ones in Heaven, concerning the happening of things on Earth and their lack of knowledge of the well-being of their love ones on earth. This interpretation goes on to justify their explanation as such. If those in Heaven does not know what is happening on Earth, they have no reason of experiencing sorrow, consequently, there are no tears in Heaven.
However, God does not use ignorance as a means of happiness toward those He loves.
The absence of tears in heaven now, is due to the clarity of the perception of those that are in Heaven. Though it is unlikely they spent their time viewing us here on earth. However, it is certain they have an insight as to the timing of things on Earth. Through divine understanding, they see beyond turmoil if there be any, for they see the whole picture, the conclusion is victory.
An example of divine understanding of those that has gone on to be with the Lord is seen through the account of Abraham and Lazarus. At the time of Lazarus, Abraham has gone on to be with the Lord for more than 1,000 years. However, we learn, according to the Gospel of Luke, Abraham knew Moses, who was many, many years after him. He further knew of the wellbeing of his descendants and their actions on the Earth. Nevertheless, he wasn’t in a state of dismay, or sorrow.
Most tears we cried for the sorrow we feel as humans, is for the lack of a complete understanding of things, but where the mind operates through sufficient clarity, it towers above uncertainties, by seeing beyond the present, with the insight to the conclusion.
Take for an example, the account of Jacob the patriarch and his beloved son Joseph. Having loved Joseph with all he had as a father, he received the tragic news of the death of his son, by a wild animal. No more could he see and touch Joseph, but all was left was the rag of a bloody robe. As we read the story of Joseph today, we know, Joseph was alive, but Jacob his father saw only what was before him, through uncertainty, his mind sunk in deep sorrow for the loss of his son.
What if Jacob could see beyond it all, to know that one day in his lifetime, he will see Joseph again, well and alive? Perhaps he would have delighted in the passing of time, to see his son again, without the need of tears for his absence. Yet God was with Jacob through His words of comfort, on Earth.
What more about those that are in the presence of God in Heaven now? Greater is their understanding of the grand view of all things. As for us, here on Earth, we see through a dark glass, though we see, but we do not clearly see all things.
For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.
1 Corinthians 13:12
That is to say, what we see now is like a dim image in a mirror; then we shall see face-to-face. What I know now is only partial, but it will be complete—as complete as God's knowledge of me.
May the joy of Heaven that awaits us be a reminder to count our blessings. Even on Earth, may this joy outweigh the sorrow of this life.
Until then, let us abide in faith, hope, and love.