In the book of Genesis it is written that paradise is on earth. Now, if we look at 2 Corinthians 12:2-4, we see that the Apostle Paul was caught up to the third heaven and was caught up into Paradise. Where is Paradise? On earth or in heaven? What does the Bible say?
I will present the passages of the New Testament where the Greek word PARADEISOS is used, which is translated “paradise” and I will highlight the words that indicate where this place is.
In the Kingdom of God
When the Savior was crucified on the cross, the following case took place:
One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: “Aren’t you the Christ? Save yourself and us!” But the other criminal rebuked him. “Don’t you fear God,” he said, “since you are under the same sentence? We are punished justly, for we are getting what our deeds deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong.” Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.Jesus answered him, “I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise.” (Luke 23:39-43)(NASB)
According to this passage, what the criminal called “your kingdom”, the Savior called “paradise”.
In the third heaven
When talking about divine revelation and how he received them the Apostle Paul said:
I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago–whether in the body I do not know, or out of the body I do not know, God knows–such a man was caught up to the third heaven. And I know how such a man–whether in the body or apart from the body I do not know, God knows– was caught up into Paradise and heard inexpressible words, which a man is not permitted to speak. (2 Corinthians 12:2-4)(NASB)
So, according to this passage of the Apostle, Paradise is in the third heaven.
Where the tree of life is
In the book of Revelation, at the end of the message to the Church from Ephesus, Lord Jesus made the following promise to those who overcome:
He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches to him who overcomes, I will grant to eat of the tree of life which is in the Paradise of God.’ (Revelation 2:7)(NASB)
We know that this tree of life was originally in the Garden of Eden that was on the Tigris and Euphrates rivers region, i.e. in Mesopotamia or Iraq of today. After the fall of man into sin, he was banished from Eden and in the following centuries this place no longer existed, because sinners can not enter into it. As we have seen, this blessed place, Paradise, is in the third heaven now and there is also found the tree of life and only those who will overcome will eat from it, they are those who washed their clothes in the blood of the Lamb and live in full obedience to God through the Holy Spirit. God help us enter into His Paradise.
Translated by Felicia Rotaru