Like other religions, Christianity sees dwarfism and other defects as a punishment from God for past sins. For this reason, some believe that such people will not go to heaven and instead to purgatory. However, there’s evidence in the Bible suggesting otherwise.
Many myths surrounding the height requirements for heaven exist. And although some believe them sincerely, they are mostly hogwash. So, what does the Bible say about who gets to heaven or hell? Do good deeds in one’s past life mean they’ll go to heaven? Or does being short prevent one from entering heaven? Read on!
Can Short People Go To Heaven?
Yes, short people can go to heaven. That’s because no theological evidence suggests that short people are exempted from entering the kingdom of heaven.
Height, appearance, health, or other physical attributes don’t qualify or disqualify one from eternal life. In fact, no specific sin, flaw, or mistake can prevent you from going to heaven. The Bible says that all of us fall short, but there’s a way to redemption. Romans 3:23 reads,
“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.”
This means that you can go to heaven so long as you have faith in Jesus and repent for your past sins.
Moreover, the Bible says that Jesus was the perfect unblemished sacrifice who died for our sins. None of us are worthy of his role, as we are somehow blemished. And he made way for us. John 3:16-18 says:
“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. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of the God’s one and only Son.”
Does The Bible Say Short People Will Go To Hell?
No, the Bible doesn’t mention that short people will go to hell. However, Christian teachings suggest that they won’t go to heaven. There are two key references to dwarfism in the Bible regarding short people and going to heaven. The first comes from Leviticus, and the second from the Gospel of Luke.
Dwarfs were initially condemned in Leviticus 21, setting rules for priests. The rules list dwarfs as people with deformities or congenital disabilities and is not welcomed into the fold of the faith. Dwarfs are seen as sinful until Jesus meets Zacchaeus, the short tax collector.
Leviticus 21 narrates the direct message from God to Moses, referring to dwarfs and how they are not viewed favorably by God. The verse reads:
“The Lord said to Moses, “Say to Aaron: ‘For the generations to come none of your descendants who has a defect may come near to offer the food of his God. No man who has any defect may come near: no man who is blind or lame, disfigured or deformed; no man with crippled foot or hand, or who is a hunchback or dwarf, or who has an eye defect, or who has to fester or running sores or damaged testicles.
No descendant of Aaron the priest who has any defect is to come near to present the food offerings to the Lord. He has a defect; he must not come near to offer the food to his God. He may eat the holiest food of his God, as well as the holy food; yet because of his defect, he must not go near the curtain or approach the altar, and so desecrate my sanctuary. I am the Lord, who makes them holy.”
Since Aaron was the founder of the Israelite priesthood, this verse suggests that people with deformities are not welcomed into the faith since Christianity is built upon many of these early traditions and so may not enter paradise. However, Jesus changed what Moses said to Aaron when he met Zaccheus.
Did Zacchaeus Save Short people From Damnation?
The answer to that depends on your interpretation of Luke 19:1-10.
Short people will go to heaven thanks to the precedent set by Jesus upon meeting Zacchaeus. Jesus declared that Zacchaeus (who viewed him from a sycamore tree) was the same as any of his followers and eligible for the afterlife, although he was a sinner.
During his trip to Jerico, Zacchaeus wanted to see Jesus but couldn’t because of his short stature. So, he climbed a tree to see the Messiah. Upon seeing Zacchaeus, Jesus told him to come down as he’ll be staying at his house. That’s when Zacchaeus repented his sins and promised to give most of his wealth to the poor. He said:
“Look, Lord! Here and now I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount.”
This was when Jesus said that short people would be permitted into heaven in Luke 19:9. And it’s the moment he overturned the mandate given to Aaron by Moses regarding dwarfs not being welcomed in the kingdom of heaven. Luke 19:9 reads:
“Today salvation has come to this house, because he too is a son of Abraham.”
Is It A Sin To Be Short?
Historically, disability was seen as a punishment from God. However, this is more of a social interpretation than God’s intended message.
In Christianity, people with deformities are ostracized from society. Leviticus 21 and the miracles Jesus performed in the Gospel of Luke affirm this narrative. This made many people with deformities seek cures as a path to salvation and sin eradication.
However, that contradicts what Jesus said in Luke 19:9, where he gave all people, regardless of their congenital disabilities, a path to heaven.
Can short people go to heaven? Yes, short people can go to heaven. That’s because going to heaven is based on one’s faith in Jesus Christ and repenting for past sins.