Making all Things New Series
“The Heavenly Promise of Renewal”
Introduction (Daniel Young – background and role at Christ Covenant)
Background and Context
1Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. 2And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem,
coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
3And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. 4He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” 5And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” (Rev. 21:1-5)
Now here we are today, three days into the new year of 2021 and a lot of us here have been looking to put behind us the year of 2020. 2020 as a whole was seemingly disastrous for many worldwide reasons not even counting the way that those reasons affected our home and personal lives. Regardless, many of us are looking to extinguish from our minds the reality of the year 2020. But now in the year 2021 and this being the first service of the New Year we are going to look and see the realities of the promise of renewal in the Lord’s word. First thing we see is the Lord’s promise to renew creation.
THE RENEWAL OF CREATION
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. (Rev.21.1)
Creation today, as beautiful and majestic as it is, is still fallen and affects the very fabric and order of nature in which we see. Affecting everything from natural events, to the way nature operates.
We see that within verse 1 the author makes a point to reference toward the sea being no more.
This speaks volumes toward the truth of the renewal of creation when we understand its original context, toward these ancient peoples. The sea was not romanticized as it is for us today, today we can take luxury cruises in fact it was viewed as treacherous, and frightful and the travelers upon it were held toward the mercy of its tempest and storms. This is a reassuring promise given toward the believers today a promise of no treachery, or danger any longer! The Scripture tells us that all of creation moans for renewal and that it longs to be set free from its current corruption. (Rom. 8.20-22)
If we turn on our TV’s to watch national geographic we will see the lion chasing and hunting the Gazelle. We see the unrest in nature. Today there is a constant danger, a constant struggle. But the Bible tells us that there will be a day when “The wolf and the lamb shall graze together; the lion shall eat straw like the ox.” (Is. 65:25) This is God’s promise of renewal!
Yet, even in the midst of the reality of the creation we live on now, the Lord by His mercy has promised that He is making ALL THINGS NEW, that the ways in which nature operates today are not final, but instead the Lord has promised to take away all treachery, all danger, all strife amongst His creation! THE SEA WILL BE NO MORE! These are the promises of our Lord, thanks be to God that all of creation shall be renewed.
John continues telling us, “And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ‘Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God.’” (Rev 21:2-3) There is a lot I could say about these two verses but one thing is clear, that we will have a renewed relationship with God that has never been experienced before, in the New Heavens and New earth. We see that even in the midst of chaos and turmoil in this life God has promised, to dwell with man and this will give the result of the fact that there will be perfect harmony in the world.
The Second aspect that we see in the Lords promise of renewal is the renewal of our physical bodies.
RENEWAL OF OUR PHYSICAL BODIES
He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” (Rev. 21:4)
We as Christians struggle not only with the turmoil in creation, but with the pain of our fleshly bodies we live in today. Some of us here have health issues, any sort of health issue and it seems that we may feel we have been dealt a wrong hand in this life. Some days it seems the aches and pains of this earthy body are far too much to handle.
The reality is that the Lord has used the health issues some of us face today to achieve His perfect and goodwill, and we can rejoice in the fact that the Lord’s perfect and good will is to bring the saint into glory! Where there will never be an aching of a bone, a disease, a death, a maiming that will hurt the Lords people any longer, no longer will there be any pain, or any disability. Just as the Lord is renewing creation from death and pain, He is doing it within the lives of His saints.
Personal example (Football)
The Bible tells us, “our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body. (Phil. 3:20-21)
The Lord has promised renewal toward His people, a glorified body in which we can fully enjoy His presence and tender mercies, one not plagued with the disabilities and pains that this life offers. Oh how gracious God is that He has told us the events that happen toward our bodily resurrection!
The Scripture tell us that there shall be a resurrection from the dead and that my earthly body with all of its aches and problems will pass away. I will be resurrected just as Christ was along with all others whom the Lord has saved! My body will no longer be my body that was subject to the pains of this world, but it will be a new and glorified body, a body in which I will enjoy the Lord, and His saints perfectly, forever and ever Amen!
RENEWAL OF ALL THINGS
And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” (Rev.21.5)
If we listen to others, we would believe that the Lords final renewal of all things will consist of a beautiful white light, babies sitting on clouds and playing angelic melodies on the harp. But this is far from the truth, we are promised that He will renew all things in a way in which we can live to God’s praise in imperishable bodies, and that Heaven and earth will no longer be separated, but instead will be one unified creation!
He is making new everything that we can see! Like I said before He is renewing the strife in creation to bring harmony, He is Going to renew His saints and give us a glorified body! But He is not only doing this, but everything that we could ever fathom, and everything that we cant even understand here on earth will be restored to absolute perfection.
This is the promise of God and He declares to John in the text that His word is trustworthy and true, so we must understand that these promises that God has given of renewal, are true for us today and should be the Joy for us as Christians here in 2021 and beyond.
You must understand that these promises are not promises that are earned but rather these promises have been purchased by Christ. These are promises given only to the saints in Christ, to those whom have had their sin washed by His blood. These promises are unmerited, they are unobtainable by any work or activity, but only come to us through the work of our Lord, being slain for your sin and mine.
We have these promises from the Lord Himself, that He will renew all things. But what does that mean for us today?
We have hoped that 2020 would end, that this pandemic would end, that the protests would find peace, that we could put this dreadful year behind us and that’s wonderful and that’s great and I believe that is something we all want and there is nothing wrong with that at all.
But where is my joy truly at? What if 2021 is no better than 2020, what if the pandemic gets worse, what if the world continues to moan and groan and ache?
If I am more Joyful over 2021 being a better year than I am of the beautiful realities that are promised to the Christian through Christ in the Scriptures, over the reality of the promise that He will be making all things new, that I will see His face, that I will sin no longer than I have missed the point entirely.
Just as the Lord said in verse 5 that His word is trust worthy and true, so let this be the truth of our hearts, and our comfort and our Joy for 2021, that we have a hope beyond the reality of this broken world, a heavenly reality promised by our heavenly Father.