A photo of an ancient, weathered stone archway bathed in golden light, symbolizing the biblical concept of a portal, inviting viewers to contemplate the mysteries and potential spiritual dimensions beyond.

What Does The Bible Say About Portals?

Portals, mystical doorways to other worlds or dimensions, have become a popular concept in modern fiction and entertainment.

But what does the Bible, the foundational text of Christianity, actually say about portals? At first glance, the Bible does not directly mention portals at all.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer: the Bible does not explicitly reference portals as mystical doorways. However, some interpret certain passages about Heaven’s gates or dimensions beyond human perception as suggesting portal-like concepts.

In this comprehensive article, we will explore Biblical texts that some readers have connected to ideas of portals, dimensions, and heavenly realms beyond normal human perception and understanding.

We’ll look at the original ancient cultural contexts of these texts as well as various interpretive lenses through which they have been read.

The Gate of Heaven

Ezekiel’s Vision

In Ezekiel 1, the prophet Ezekiel recounts his astonishing vision of God’s heavenly temple and throne. As he gazes upward, Ezekiel sees a doorway in the expanse over the cherubim’s heads that looks like a “gate of heaven” (Ezekiel 1:26). This glorious portal opens into the very presence of God.

Ezekiel goes on to describe the “likeness of a throne” with a figure shining “like that of a man” seated above it (Ezekiel 1:26).

This is clearly a vision of God in His divine glory. The heavenly portal Ezekiel witnesses allows direct access to the Almighty Creator enthroned in unmatched majesty.

What an incredibly privileged perspective! Imagine glimpsing the brilliance of God’s dwelling place and the gleam of His judgment seat through a door flung open directly into heaven.

Ezekiel sees the Lord high and lifted up, arrayed in beauty and boundless power.

Dimensions Beyond Human Understanding

Paul on the ‘Third Heaven’

The apostle Paul wrote about being caught up into the third heaven, a realm beyond normal human perception and understanding (2 Corinthians 12:2-4).

  1. Though he was forbidden to describe what he saw, this passage indicates there are realities and dimensions of existence that go beyond our earthly senses and knowledge.

Paul’s reference to the third heaven likely corresponds to the dwelling place of God. The first heaven is the sky and space surrounding earth, the second heaven being outer space, and the third heaven being the abode of God.

So there are spheres of existence beyond our physical world that are presently incomprehensible to us. As beings limited by time and space, we can only speculate about the nature of these realms.

Perhaps they involve additional dimensions, altered physics, and beings or modes of consciousness foreign to our earthly experience. While intriguing, much remains mystery.

We must be content with the glimpses God has chosen to reveal.

The New Jerusalem

The book of Revelation describes a glorious heavenly city called New Jerusalem that will come down from God out of heaven (Revelation 21:2). Though its dimensions are measurable (Revelation 21:16), this city almost certainly transcends anything within our current understanding.

New Jerusalem is pictured as a place of incredible beauty, with foundations made of precious stones, streets of gold, and gates made of giant pearls (Revelation 21:19-21).

It has no need of sun or moon since God’s glory illuminates it (Revelation 21:23).

Most significantly, God and the Lamb dwell within the city, and their servants worship them face to face (Revelation 22:3-4).

Clearly, this magnificently adorned city is symbolic of divine realities beyond our comprehension. Human language and imagery can only approximate the eternal dwelling place being prepared for God’s people. Its beauty and light reflect the awe-inspiring majesty of God’s unveiled presence.

We can only imagine the wonders that await.

A photo showcasing a majestic mountain landscape, with the sun's rays streaming through a narrow, towering canyon, symbolizing the awe-inspiring Gates of Zion mentioned in the Bible.

Cultural Backgrounds and Interpretive Lenses

Ancient Near East Cosmologies

The Bible emerged in the context of the ancient Near East, where societies held a mythical worldview depicting the universe as a three-tiered structure.

The heavens above, the earth in the middle, and the underworld below were connected by portals allowing gods and spirits to travel between realms.

Portals like Jacob’s ladder allowed access between earth and heaven, while bodies of water or caves marked entrances to the netherworld. This cosmological framework shaped biblical authors’ perceptions of portals.

Mystical Traditions

Throughout history, mystical traditions in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam approached biblical portal passages as metaphors for spiritual experiences.

In merkabah and hekhalot texts, heavenly ascents through portals represented mystical journeys of the soul.

Medieval Jewish Kabbalists envisioned portals of metaphysical meaning latent in Scripture. Some Christians have viewed portals as allegories for spiritual transformation or gateways to the New Jerusalem.

Sufi Muslims see the mi’raj of Muhammad ascending to heaven through portals as a model for the inward spiritual journey. So portals often symbolize transcendent encounters with the divine realm.

Literalist Perspectives

However, some interpret the Bible’s portal passages literally. Certain Christian fundamentalists believe heaven-bound believers will be raptured body and soul through actual portals in the sky.

Some UFO enthusiasts apply Ezekiel’s vision to speculate about literal portals used by extraterrestrial spacecraft.

But viewing portals only as physical gateways conflicts with the historical context and mystical meanings. A nuanced approach integrating the text’s original culture alongside its metaphorical significance yields a richer understanding.


While the Bible does not directly describe portals in the mystical sci-fi sense, some interpret certain visions and descriptions poetically as suggesting portal-like openings into heavenly realms and dimensions beyond normal human perception.

However, reasonable people disagree on interpreting these often highly symbolic texts.

In the end, the Bible is not concerned with detailing fantastical other worlds, but in transforming this world and human lives through spiritual truths and moral wisdom applied in righteous living.

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