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Is heaven located in the northern sky?



Looking upward

This recurring idea has apparent support from Job 26:7:

“He [God] spreads out the northern skies over empty space.”

Although some Bible students have taken this verse to indicate a significant direction in space, perhaps the location of heaven, the reference more likely refers to the broad northern expanse in general. This particular direction may have been emphasized because of the apparent motion of all other stars around a stationary point in the northern sky (presently Polaris) that results from the earth's rotation.

An “empty space,” devoid of stars, is not found in the north. Instead, billions of stars and galaxies extend outward in all directions. Although heaven is a literal place, it has not been seen with telescopes. It may indeed exist in the northern direction, or in a distant region of the universe, or in another dimension altogether.

Astronomy and the Bible Scripture indicates that heaven may exist entirely beyond the visible universe. In 2 Corinthians 12:2-3, the apostle Paul refers to “the third heaven”—paradise—far beyond the first heaven (Earth's atmosphere) and the second heaven (the realm of the stars). He also speaks of the Lord's having “ascended higher than all the heavens” (Eph. 4:10).

Author: Dr. Donald B. DeYoung—adapted from Astronomy and the Bible: Questions and Answers, 2nd Edition (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Books, 2000), 176 pp.

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