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Everything new!

He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” Revelation 21.5

The renewal of creation gives Christians a distinctive outlook. Scientific theory suggests that, if climate change doesn't get us first, eventually the sun will cool and the lights will go out on planet earth. The Bible proclaims a very different future in which Jesus' return is accompanied by the descent of heaven to earth and the renewal of both - new heaven, new earth - fully integrated into that "new creation", with Jesus ultimately and unequivocally on the throne. So we look out on a glorious prospect. But this must be balanced by the shame of our failure as stewards of the present creation, for which we shall be judged.

So no room for complacency - either on account of past failure or the mistaken assumption that, because Jesus is coming to fix everything, we can continue to live profligate lives. The challenge facing us is to live lives worthy of our great inheritance. Putting it another way, Christians are called to live as strangers in this world because our true citizenship is in the world to come. Rather than an excuse to opt out, this amounts to an exhortation to reconsider all our attitudes, assumptions and patterns of behaviour, in order to live more faithfully, carefully and effectively.

Paul encourages us that when we receive Christ as Saviour and Lord we ourselves become a "new creation" (2 Corinthians 5.9). In his letter to the Romans, Paul talks about the whole of creation groaning in anticipation of this transformation. The connection between our renewal and the plight of the world and its inhabitants is surely worth exploring...



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