And Jesus said unto him,
Verily I say unto thee,
To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.
Paradise is not on this Earth.
True or false?
A comma means a lot in a sentence. People say it doesn't, but it really does. It can change the meaning of something entirely. One example:
"Let's eat, Grandma!"
"Let's eat Grandma!"
There were no punctuation marks or any commas in the original Greek, just like there are none in Hebrew. No capital letters either. So Jesus could very well have said to the thief:
"Verily I say unto thee today,
thou shalt be with me in Paradise."
Totally different idea, isn't it? And one compatible with the rest of the Bible. Just to mention two people who wrote of the earth becoming a paradise where humans would live forever----Isaiah and David.
Isaiah wrote (when the Messiah will have taken over rulership of the earth):
"The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf, and the young lion, and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them....They shall not hurt nor destroy all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea
." (Isaiah 11:6-9, KJV)
"For evildoers shall be cut off: but those that wait upon the LORD, they shall inherit the earth
....The righteous shall inherit the land, and dwell therein forever
." (Psalm 37: 9,29, KJV)
It looks pretty clear to me. The earth is still the place where God wants people to live.