The verse you refer to in your question is 2nd Peter 3:8 which says, “But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day” (NKJV). The Apostle Peter was inspired to write this in response to men who were ridiculing the idea of the Second Coming of Christ when He will judge wicked men and establish His 1,000-year kingdom. The argument of these scoffers is revealed in verse 4, “Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation.” In short, they were saying, “The promise of Christ’s coming to judge the world can’t be true since God has never judged the world before. And besides that, it’s been 2,000 years since Christ promised He would return.” Peter corrected them by reminding them that God did indeed judge the world in the past with a universal flood (see verses 5-6) and that God does not “reckon time” as we do on earth (verse 8).

Your question deals with time (in heaven) so let’s explore that subject in some detail. In Isaiah 57:15 we read, “For thus says the High and Lofty One Who INHABITS ETERNITY.” What does that mean? It means that God IS ETERNAL; He never had a beginning nor will He have an end. This is confirmed in Psalm 90:2, “Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever You had formed the earth and the world, even from EVERLASTING TO EVERLASTING, You are God.” This means that in one sense, God is OUTSIDE OF TIME, at least “time as we know it.” And I believe that is why God does not “reckon time” as we do on earth.

Having said that, God CREATED TIME AS WE KNOW IT. The very first verse in the Bible speaks to this, “In the BEGINNING God created the heavens and the earth.” In this simple statement we learn that God, who had NO BEGINNING, created the universe and “time as we know it” had its beginning as well. We “reckon time” by minutes, hours, days, weeks, etc. and in this chapter, we read of “the first day” (verse 5), “the second day” (verse 8), “the third day” (verse 13), “the fourth day” (verse 19), “the fifth day” (verse 23), “the sixth day” (verse 31), and finally, in 2:2, of “the seventh day.” We get our “week” (of seven days) from these verses. And so, TIME AS WE KNOW IT was born and this is how we “reckon time” to this day.

But is there TIME IN HEAVEN, and if so, is it counted the same way we reckon time on earth? Again, God does not “measure time” as we do, but do people who are now in heaven measure time as we do? Some would quote Revelation 10:6 (from the King James Version) to insist that THERE IS NO TIME IN HEAVEN. That verse says, “And sware by him that liveth for ever and ever, who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, THERE SHOULD BE TIME NO LONGER.” That sounds pretty conclusive, does it not? The problem is all other translations render the end of that verse with the words, “there should be DELAY no longer.” The context that this verse is found in is speaking of judgments that are falling upon the earth and the inspired writer is simply informing us that “there will be NO DELAY in judgment,” for God is about to fulfill His promise of judgment.

Now let’s look at two references in Revelation which lead us to believe that people in heaven, who have passed from this scene of time into eternity, are experiencing TIME AS WE KNOW IT. In Revelation 6:9-10 and 8:1 we read, “I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and they cried with a loud voice, saying, ‘HOW LONG, O Lord, holy and true, until You judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth’?…When He opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about HALF AN HOUR.” Now one may say, “Yes, but even though these people are in heaven the ETERNAL STATE as described in Revelation 21:1-4 (where there is a New Heaven and a New Earth and God is dwelling with all men) has not yet begun, so they may still be ‘measuring time’ as they always had while they were on earth.” It is true, the eternal state for all men is not being described in those two references, but those people who are mentioned have left this “scene of time and sense” and have entered into eternity. So, we could say that the “eternal state for them has already begun.” And yet the language used SEEMS to imply that there is still a “reckoning of time” that we use here on earth.

In conclusion, I believe we can safely say, based 2nd Peter 3:8; Isaiah 57:15 and Psalm 90:2, that God’s concept of time is vastly different from ours. Yet in saying this God did CREAT TIME FOR MAN and it would seem that when believers get to heaven, they will still have a concept of time similar to what we have known here on earth. I will now quote a reference that is describing the ETERNAL STATE IN HEAVEN: “And he showed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb. In the middle of its street, and on either side of the river, was the tree of life, which bore twelve fruits, each tree yielding its fruit EVERY MONTH.” Ah, here too we see a very familiar “measurement of time” that we use here on earth, yet this verse describes TIME IN HEAVEN. So, even though time may be very different in some respects, in other respects we will be “reckoning time” as we did on earth.

I would like to close by quoting a passage that seems to teach us that TIME WILL GO ON in eternity and then I will quote a well-known stanza from a hymn we all know and love. “But God…made us alive together with Christ….and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ, that IN THE AGES TO COME He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus” (Ephesians 2:4-7). “When we’ve been there TEN THOUSAND YEARS, Bright shining as the sun, We’ve NO LESS DAYS to sing God’s praise Than when we FIRST BEGUN” (From “Amazing Grace”).  (460.3)  (DO)