I don’t often post my sermon manuscripts on here … but I thought some might be encouraged by these words
Making Everything New
But Jesus does not change
Oh, you look at the beauty of the world, mighty mountains, spectacular sunrises and sunsets, roaring rivers, serene streams, yet they all had a beginning. One day Jesus said, “let there be …” and it came into being.
Psalm 102:25–26 (CSB)
25 Long ago you established the earth, and the heavens are the work of your hands. 26 They will perish, but you will endure; all of them will wear out like clothing. You will change them like a garment, and they will pass away.
Oh, my heart is burdened today, as I am sure yours is.
What are we going to do Lord? Where is this all going?
I have had tears in my eyes too often in these last days.
Lord, can you make it stop spinning?
And then I was reading our text as I return to our study in The Revelation of Jesus Christ, I’m still crying and looking for answers, wanting to inspire, wanting to be an agent for change, and longing have hope and give hope.
And I heard a voice in my head saying, “Behold I make all things new, write for these words are true and faithful”
In a world calling for change, we need to stop trying to keep EVERYTHING the SAME, and LISTEN to the One who is Faithful and True, and hear Him say, Look – idou = Pay Attention, Look, Behold, See, Listen – I am making everything new.
Then I laughed to myself. Why? Because I got this image of us coming into Heaven. And I think that sometimes our image of Heaven is whatever we consider to be traditional, and “churchy”, and we come into heaven, all ready for that Traditional view … all ready for things to finally be “the way they should be”, the “way they have been”, the “way they used to be”. And then we hear the voice of God, seated on the throne say, “Look, I am making EVERYTHING NEW”
Idou – Look
Poieo = do, make, (present, active, indicative)
i.e. right now, I am actively, in reality, fashioning something
Pas = all, every, the whole
Kainos = new, fresh, strange, unknown
And why I laughed was because I think we might be tempted to say, “New? Seriously? I don’t want new, I want what I want, what I know, what I’m comfortable with.
But we are crying …
Psalm 102:1–2 (CSB)
1 Lord, hear my prayer; let my cry for help come before you. 2 Do not hide your face from me in my day of trouble. Listen closely to me; answer me quickly when I call.
And v4 says My heart is suffering, withered like grass …
Psalm 102:12–13 (CSB)
12 But you, Lord, are enthroned forever; your fame endures to all generations. 13 You will rise up and have compassion on Zion, for it is time to show favor to her— the appointed time has come.
Oh, that’s what we want … we want God to Rise … but mark it down … every time God Rises, in this sin stained world, there will be CHANGE
V16 – the Lord will rebuild
V17 – he will pay attention to the prayer of the destitute
V20 – to hear the prisoner’s groaning, to set free those condemned to die
SO THAT – v21
There is always a SO THAT … in the move of God. He is not a “so what God”, but a “so that God”
Psalm 102:21 (CSB)
21 so that they might declare the name of the Lord in Zion and his praise in Jerusalem
And then v25 … Long Ago you established the heart … the heavens
But v26 … they will perish, but YOU will endure …
We want to hold onto THINGS that are Familiar … but EVERYTHING changes
But the Lord Endures
Psalm 102:26–27 (CSB)
26 … all of them will wear out like clothing. You will change them like a garment, and they will pass away. 27 But you are the same, and your years will never end.
So … IF we are to be the people of God … Let us HANG On to God, he does not change
But also let us be INSTRUMENTS of CHANGE
In these days of upheaval and unrest
Let us be Instruments of Peace … and that means CHANGE …
Peace doesn’t mean STILLNESS
Peace doesn’t mean Stagnation
Peace means we CHANGE to a Station of Peace
And so then, when I look at this 21st chapter in John’s Revelation of Jesus Christ. The ONLY thing that is the SAME is JESUS … EVERYTHING Else Changes
And I am reminded that Everything we do on earth is meant to be a shadow, a foreshadow of what is in Heaven. Hebrews 8:5 says that has always been the way.
So, we must be Heavenly People of Change
Oh I don’t know when this day will come … but it IS coming!!
READ Revelation 21:1-7
Then The ONE seated on the throne said …
Look … Behold … Pay Attention
Wherever your mind is today, hear our Lord God Almighty say … “Look HERE” …
But then he says … “I Am Making Everything NEW”
There is a lot of good news in this statement … but it also might be the scariest of words … New isn’t always safe …
We should make the most of this life, but in Christ, this Life is Heaven practice.
Look … I am making all things new …
This is NOT a wishful statement … God never says, “don’t quote me on this” … No he says, “WRITE IT DOWN”
“These words are Faithful” – pistos – reliable, trustworthy, dependable, and “TRUE” – alethinos – real, genuine, consistent with truth
And then he said,
“IT IS DONE!”
– ginomai – It has Become – it has come to pass – it has taken center stage.
My goodness … can you hear God say,
“This is What I’ve been talking about, this is what I made you for, everything in Your Story has led to THIS place in MY Story … and it is becoming OUR Story.”
“It is DONE” … This has Come to Pass … this is where I was going …
Forget the Past
Isaiah 43:18–19, 21 (CSB)
18 “Do not remember the past events; pay no attention to things of old. 19 Look, I am about to do something new; even now it is coming. Do you not see it? Indeed, I will make a way in the wilderness, rivers in the desert.
21 The people I formed for myself will declare my praise.
Let’s be visionary people
Let’s be transformational people
Let’s be instruments of peace
It is Done … and it will be DONE …
Because God is bringing things to …
- I am the Alpha and Omega
The first and the last letter of the Greek Alphabet
Vincent points out that the Hebrew first letter is Aleph and the last is Tav, and that Rabbinical writers said that Adam transgressed ALL of the law “from Aleph to Tav” … But Jesus our First and Last is Faithful and True and the Hebrew word for Truth is Emet which contains the First, Middle, and Last letters of the Alphabet. He is Truth
Then I heard a loud voice from the throne. Look, God’s dwelling is with humanity, and he will live with them, they will be his peoples, and God himself will be with them and will be their God
There is an END … not just a FINISH but an objective. We are not just looking for it all to end but it all to come to COMPLETION … Culmination …
- The Beginning and End
Isaiah 41:4 (CSB)
4 Who has performed and done this, calling the generations from the beginning? I am the Lord, the first and with the last—I am he.”
John said, “in the beginning was the Word … all things were made by him … the word became flesh and dwelt among us … and we beheld his glory”
And now we have been taken into his presence and we will dwell with him
The is First and He is Last … Beginning all things.
It started with him … and it will end with him
But he IS the End … he is the purpose and us in his presence is our purpose. We beheld his glory and we shine his glory
Jesus was the FIRST WORD … and said “let there be”
In the Middle, Jesus said “It is Finished” on the cross
And at the end he will say “It is Done … I have kept my word … you are here.”
When Jesus was introduced in Revelation 1:8 – I am the Alpha and Omega … the one who was, and who is, and who is to come, the Almighty
- Was, Is, and Is to Come
Isaiah 44:6 (CSB)
6 This is what the Lord, the King of Israel and its Redeemer, the Lord of Armies, says: I am the first and I am the last. There is no God but me.
Lord, King, and Redeemer
Lord – I WAS here First … Colossians 1:17 – He is before all things and by him all things hold together
King – He IS … Ruler of all things right Now … Psalm 103:19 – the Lord has established his throne in heaven, and his kingdom rules over all
Redeemer – Is to Come – He has purchased us and he will claim us. Our Redeemer is coming to finish what he started and claim what he purchased … They sang in Revelation 5:9 – a new song: you are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seal, because you were slaughtered, and you purchased people for God by your blood from every tribe and language and people and nation.
I Make Everything New
- A New Heaven and a New Earth
… Oh a beautiful picture … we will gaze at its wonder next week … but this world is beautiful … but a new heaven and a new earth are coming …
Jesus was the first word and he will have the Last word, so don’t let your current word define you.
He is a Savior of Completion … and when it is Done … he will bring …
Oh my … we are chasing, we are longing, we are searching … Jesus stood at a feast full of people who had been eating, and drinking and he said … If anyone is thirsty
There will be no one in Heaven that is not Satisfied … but today he is still asking, are you …
We run after many things looking to fill our thirst … but are still thirsty?
The Feast of Shelters celebrated their time traveling to the promised land.
For 7 days they celebrated, they ate and drank. But every morning, the priest led the people to Siloam’s fountain and filled a golden pitcher and brought it to the temple with music and shouting and they poured the pitcher from the “wells of salvation” … And so on the 8th day … Jesus Loudly Asks … is anyone thirsty?
And he said, let him come to me, and drink …
And here in Revelation 21:6 … I will …
- Give – from the Spring of the water of Life
Oh yes, the Lord is my Shepherd … he leads me beside still waters … he restores my soul …
Remember Revelation 7:16-17 says we will no longer hunger … thirst … for the Lamb who is at the center of the throne will shepherd them; he will guide them to springs of the waters of life, and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes …
And so here v4 he keeps his promise – wiping away every tear … death will be no more … remember death is now in the lake of fire … no more grief, crying, pain
Jesus told the Samaritan woman, whoever drinks from the water I will give him will never be thirsty again …
“But I can’t afford that” … I’m sure that’s what that woman thought and often what we think …
But Jesus gives …
- Freely – dorean
without cost, without payment, without restriction
The great truth of scripture is that sin:
- takes us where we don’t want to go,
- keeps us longer than we want to stay,
- and costs us more than we can pay.
They wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
And if Jesus Gives freely, by grace, we can’t buy it, can’t earn it, then as God’s people, may we never make someone pay for what has been given to us freely.
Remember that’s the fight Paul fought with the establishment in the church in Acts 15. They were piling up extra things beside Jesus, and James said,
we should not make it difficult for those turning to God …
So, let us not make it hard for them to come to Christ – Jesus just says,
And the fullness of the freedom we will know that day …
we will finally experience all that God intended
Completed in Christ
Satisfied in Christ … Then we will have the fullness of our …
- For the one who Conquers
Do I need to fight my way to my inheritance? No …
1 John 5 takes us there …
1 John 5:4 (CSB)
4 because everyone who has been born of God conquers the world. This is the victory that has conquered the world: our faith.
Conquering is being born of God …
1 John 5:1 (CSB)
1 Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God …
1 John 5:5 (CSB)
5 Who is the one who conquers the world but the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?
It isn’t complicated it is committing ourselves to the truth revealed.
Faith is based on the fact that Jesus was born physically, sent by the Father
That he Died Sacrificially for our Sins, shedding his blood to pay for our sin
And the he is revealed to us Spiritually by the Holy Spirit of God.
And when we believe the revelation … Ephesians 1:13 says when we hear the word of truth, the gospel of salvation and we believe that truth … we are given the Holy Spirit within as a down payment guaranteeing what is to come …
And here it is … God is paying in full what he made down payment on, at our moment of faith. Now comes the full inheritance. What is it?
That inheritance has
1)Possessions – These Things
Everything listed, and so much more … every promise of God is YES in Jesus (2Corinthians 1:20)
we will talk more next week … but look at them
New Heaven, New Earth – God created a thoroughly good earth, but we ruined it. He created a thoroughly good Heaven, but it too was stained by sin in the rebellion of satan.
2)Unity (the sea was no more),
3)The Holy City, New Jerusalem prepared, adorned,
6)Painless body and mind
All the previous things are gone.
This too shall pass … and here all those things pass away … and our inheritance has a provision … Everything I listed above is wonderful, but those are things …
But our inheritance isn’t just things … LIFT Your EYES …
- Provision – I will be HIS GOD
Ultimately our inheritance is God – “these things” are the byproducts of the presence of God.
- Position – He will be my Son
I’ve told you before … in Christ, we are ALL SONS … Paul taught in Galatians 3 and 4 that in Christ we are not male or female, or any other distinction but we are all Adult Sons … we all have an equal share.
Romans 8 says that we have been adopted into the family and
if we are children, we are heirs, co-heirs with Christ … we may also share in his glory
And I would humbly, but gratefully say that, He is our Inheritance and unbelievably we are HIS inheritance – He created us, because he wanted us. We left him and he recreated us,
If anyone is in Christ he is a New Creation the old has passed, all things are new
And if we will come by faith to what is provided in Christ, he will have us.
He is Lord, King, Redeemer … was, is, is to come
In these days of hatred, distrust, discord, and despair
What is our purpose?
1 Peter 2:9–10 (CSB)
9 But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his possession, so that you may proclaim the praises of the one who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. 10 Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.
- We are Casting a Vision of Heaven
Chosen, royal, holy, belonging to God … SO THAT … we can proclaim his praises …
Why just to boast?
No, we were once NOTHING … In Darkness … But now we are children of God, living in Marvelous Light … object of Mercy and Grace … and we are inviting others into what we have seen … Peace with God … We are Instruments of Peace
- Making Things New –
We don’t have to be satisfied with things as they are … we are people who are change agents in the world moving toward an unchanging God.
- Bring Jesus to Them
in witness, in action, in attitude, in service … and then
- Bring them to Jesus
Leading them to place their faith, hope, lives …
There is some argument over whether Francis of Assisi wrote the Peace Prayer as we have it, but the sentiments are definitely reflected in his known writings.
And so I say,
“Lord make me an instrument of thy peace.”
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me bring love.
Where there is offence, let me bring pardon.
Where there is discord, let me bring union.
Where there is error, let me bring truth.
Where there is doubt, let me bring faith.
Where there is despair, let me bring hope.
Where there is darkness, let me bring your light.
Where there is sadness, let me bring joy.
O Master, let me not seek as much
to be consoled as to console,
to be understood as to understand,
to be loved as to love,
for it is in giving that one receives,
it is in self-forgetting that one finds,
it is in pardoning that one is pardoned,
it is in dying that one is raised to eternal life.
And we then can say … Look … God is making Everything New