John Loftus, posted some uncharacteristically insightful thoughts about Whitney Houston's Funeral.
Kevin Costner gave a wonderful eulogy at Whitney's funeral today. He and others all claim Whitney Houston is in heaven. Is she? Whitney was a wonderful singer and actress. I loved her. I listened to her songs all of the time. But why is it that people we like are all going to heaven? Jesus said the road is narrow and few find it (Matthew 7:13-14). I understand about eulogies. Who in their right mind would question whether someone is in heaven in front of believing loved ones? Not me that's for sure, and I did funerals for people I doubted were in heaven as a former minister. That would be insensitive to the max. But again, why is it believers think they're all going to heaven? Why is it that any deceased person associated with the church is believed to have gone to heaven? According to Jesus even believers should not have this hope. According to him most people who have this hope are deluded.
While I disagree with his conclusions, Loftus has a point. Telling people that their recently died loved ones are in hell doesn't help anyone. In my experience when pastors and ministers find themselves preaching at a funeral for someone that, at worst, reject Christ, or at best, no one knows whether they were believers or no, they don't focus on whether or not the person went to heaven or hell, but instead use the occasion to make a plea to those who are not believers so that they would know who Jesus is. Loftus said: According to him most people who have this hope are deluded. Jesus never said anything of the kind. When Jesus gave the parable about turning away people who think that they were working for Him, he wasn't talking about people who really believe. He was talking about people who only outwardly act like they believe and love Him.
Instead I offer two scriptures that show what Jesus actually said about why we should believe that we will be with Him when this life is over. There are more, but let's look at these"
10 “You are Israel’s teacher,” said Jesus, “and do you not understand these things? 11 Very truly I tell you, we speak of what we know, and we testify to what we have seen, but still you people do not accept our testimony. 12 I have spoken to you of earthly things and you do not believe; how then will you believe if I speak of heavenly things? 13 No one has ever gone into heaven except the one who came from heaven—the Son of Man. 14 Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, 15 that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.”And
16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. 19 This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. 20 Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed. 21 But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.- John 3:10
21 Once more Jesus said to them, “I am going away, and you will look for me, and you will die in your sin. Where I go, you cannot come.”
22 This made the Jews ask, “Will he kill himself? Is that why he says, ‘Where I go, you cannot come’?”
23 But he continued, “You are from below; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world. 24 I told you that you would die in your sins; if you do not believe that I am he, you will indeed die in your sins.”
25 “Who are you?” they asked.
“Just what I have been telling you from the beginning,” Jesus replied. 26 “I have much to say in judgment of you. But he who sent me is trustworthy, and what I have heard from him I tell the world.” - John 8: 21-25
Believing in God's existence is not enough.
18 But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.”
Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds. 19 You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder.
20 You foolish person, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is useless?- James 2:18-20
Debunking Christianity: Is Whitney Houston in Heaven?