First, the Bible is clear that all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. None of us, no one, not one single person is entitled to heaven. This problem of being severed from God because of our sin is un-fixable, from our end of things. We have been alienated from being in God’s family. God’s Word clearly invites us to receive and believe in Christ for the forgiveness of our sins in order to receive eternal life. In other words God can restore our relationship with Him, adopt us into the family of God and give us His life which is abundant and eternal. The reality is that none of us are entitled to, or have the right to, heaven. The reason is that unless you are part of God’s family you do not have the right to the inheritance that He has prepared ONLY for His children.
But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, who were born not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.
(John 1:12-13 NAS)
Eternal life is like being part of a family. My mom is the only parent that Barb and I have left. When my mom passes away she will leave an inheritance to her sons. Now I have many great friends, but no matter how nice they are, how generous they are, or how much they have made a difference in my life or others, they are not entitled to that inheritance. Why? It is because they are NOT family. In fact, my wife is only a recipient to that inheritance because she was brought into the family by covenant (in other words she married me).
I tell people that no one is entitled to heaven, or a better place, because eternal life (heaven) is God’s inheritance that He will give ONLY to His family. The qualification to this inheritance is: you have to be family. It is not based on how basically good you think you are or how religious you have been. Unless you belong to His family, you are not entitled to the inheritance.