In western thinking there is only a heaven; however, Israel’s sages have known for some millennia there are seven heavens. The Hebrew word for heaven is shamayim, the -im making it plural, heavens.
Genesis 1:1 should read: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”
Apostle Paul is said to have visited the third heaven in 2 Corinthians 12:2-4
I know a man who was in Messiah more than fourteen years ago, whether in the body I do not know, God knows, or outside the body I do not know, this one was taken away up to the third heaven. And I know such as this man, whether in the body or without the body I do not know, God knows, that he was taken away into Paradise and he heard inexpressible words, which are not permissible for a man to speak. One New Man Bible
Note: The HaBrit HaChadasha and the Orthodox Jewish Brit Chadasha has Gan-Eden for Paradise. Gan-Eden is the Garden of Eden. The Nestle-Alande says “And he heard things that cannot be told which man may not utter.” Apostle Paul’s language indicated he did not want to appear as if he is boasting of his experience (probably occurred at his stoning when he died) of visiting what he believed to be the third heaven.
The Seven Heavens were known to be:
Dok from Isaiah 40:22, “Who stretches out the heavens like a curtain (Dok) and spreads the out like a tent to dwell in.” Doka retires in the morning and comes out in the evening, and renews the work of creation daily. Dok is the entire universe, going beyond what we can see with telescopes.
Rakia, Genesis 1:17, “God set them in the firmament (Rakia) of the heavens.” This refers to the stars, moon, sun and planets: Outer space where the various heavenly bodies move in their prescribed orbits and/or maintain relationships in constellations, solar systems, galaxies, etc. Rakia is the part of the heavens that can be seen with the naked eye.
Shechakim, Psalm 78:23-24, “Though He had commanded the skies (Shechakim) from above and opened the dorrs of heaven, and had rained down manna on them to eat and had given them of the grain of heaven.
Zevul, I Kings 8:13, “I have surely built you a house of habitation (Zevul), a place for you to dwell in forever.” This is the location fo celestial Jerusalem and the Temple with the heavenly altar where Michael offers a sacrifice. How do we know that Zevul is this place? Because, “Look down from heaven and behold from the habitation (Zevul) of Your holiness and Your glory.” Isaiah 63:15.
Maon, Psalm 42:9, “The LORD will command His loving kindness in the daytime and in the night His song will be with me.” This is where His ministering angels stay, singing in the night. We know that this is heaven because of “Look down from Your Holy Habitation (Maon) from heaven.” Deuteronomy 26:15
Machon, Deuteronomy 28:12, “The LORD will open unto you His good treasure.” This is the location of the storehouses of snow, rain, hail, whirlwinds, storms, etc. We know that this is heaven because “Then hear in heaven Your dwelling place (Machon)”. I Kings 8:39
Aravot is most interesting. That in which are righteousness, judgment, and charity, the storehouses of life, of peace and of blessing, the spirits of the righteous, with which the LORD will hereafter revive the dead (resurrection). Those living here include the Ophannim, Seraphim, holy Chayyot, the ministering angels, the Throne of Glory, and the King of the Universe. “Extol Him who rides upon the clouds (Aravot), by His name, Yah!” Psalm 68:5. The storehouse of life contains the force of life for all those yet to be born because when God finished creation (Genesis 2:1) He had made everything that would ever be – including your descendants. The spirits of the righteous are the dead who are sleeping with their fathers.
One New Man: Notice that the first three represent the universe, the visible night sky and sun, and the atmosphere. These are natural, physical things even when beyond the range of telescopes.
Each of the four levels is both physical and spiritual. Three levels are translated Habitation, but that is not the clue we need. Three levels are populated: Zevul, with the celestial Jerusalem; Maon, with bands of ministering angels; and Aravot, with various heavenly beings, the Throne, and the spirits of the saints.
Some seem to think the Apostle Paul experienced Aravot, the Throne of Glory, and the King of the Universe.
The Book of Enoch notes ten heavens.
One New Man Bible