Will people still have free will in heaven?

We know that heaven is a place where we will be with God physically. The only other place we know of where that has happened was in the garden of Eden, and clearly Adam and Eve had free will there. So, we can deduce that we will have free will in heaven, but not to the extent that we can choose to sin and get evicted from heaven.

Free will means we have choices to make between two or more options according to our desire. We are not free from our nature, but free within that nature to make choices that have an effect on our lives. Most often we choose what meets our strongest desire. In the case of fallen humanity, we contend with a sinful nature. Apart from Christ, we are not free to choose righteousness. The Bible describes people who are not saved as "a slave to sin" (John 8:34). This isn't something new. The ancient writer of Proverbs described it in 14:12 this way: "There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death." Paul writes, "Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death? Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord. So you see how it is: In my mind I really want to obey God's law, but because of my sinful nature I am a slave to sin" (Romans 7:24–25, NLT).

Now, for those people who believe in Jesus Christ for salvation, we are free from bondage to sin because the Holy Spirit works within us to help us choose what we should choose—such as salvation, forgiveness, and the lordship of Christ. As we learn to hear and respond to the Holy Spirit in maturity, our desire for righteousness grows. Many times we still choose sin, but we are also free to choose righteousness. Rather than be driven by our sinful nature, we can battle against it with the help of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit also gradually transforms our hearts. We are said to be "new creations" in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17). While on earth, we live with tension between our sinful natures and this newness in Christ. In heaven, we will be glorified; transformation will be complete and we will have no sin. In heaven our desire will be completely for God and His desires for us. This is pure freedom (Romans 8:21). Our desire to sin will be eliminated, so our choice to sin will no longer exist.

Can you imagine Jesus wanting to sin? He was tempted, but He never wavered (Hebrews 4:15). This is the way we will be in heaven (Romans 8:28–30; 1 John 3:2) and is the culmination of our salvation. We will have free will, but no desire to rebel against God. Also, unlike Adam and Eve, who were with God but had opportunities to disobey Him, we will face no such testing.

So, before we are saved, our free will is restricted in that it cannot choose righteousness. After salvation, we struggle between desire to sin and a growing desire to please God with help from the Holy Spirit. In heaven, our free will is limited against choosing what is wrong. Our free will in heaven will supernaturally always choose what is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, and admirable (see Philippians 4:8).

Copyright 2011-2022 Got Questions Ministries - All Rights Reserved.