Tuesday, January 31, 2012

What is the New Heavens and the New Earth?

When Jesus comes back, raises and judges the dead, and destroys this world, where will we go then? Back to Heaven?
2 Peter 3:10-13 – "But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything in it will be laid bare. Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat. But in keeping with His promise we are looking forward to a new Heaven and a new Earth, the home of righteousness."
We will not go back to Heaven, but will be given a new Heaven and a new Earth, our new home. It will be a renewal (a restoration of creation), when God will make the world how it is supposed to be.

Acts 3:21"He must remain in Heaven until the time comes for God to restore everything, as He promised long ago through His holy prophets."

Revelation 21:1-7, 22-26; 22:1-5 – "Then I saw a new Heaven and a new Earth, for the first Heaven and the first Earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of Heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her Husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, 'Now the dwelling of God is with men, and He will live with them. They will be His people, and God Himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.' 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.' He said to me: 'It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life. He who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be his God and he will be My son. I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp. The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it. On no day will its gates ever be shut, for there will be no night there. The glory and honor of the nations will be brought into it. Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb's Book of Life…
Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb down the middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and His servants will serve Him. They will see His face, and His Name will be on their foreheads. There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign for ever and ever."
Isaiah 11:6-9 – "The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lie down with the goat, the calf and the lion and the yearling together; and a little child will lead them. The cow will feed with the bear, their young will lie down together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox. The infant will play near the hole of the cobra, and the young child put his hand into the viper's nest. They will neither harm nor destroy on all My holy mountain, for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea."
On the New Earth:
-          (Revelation 21:3; 22:4) We will see God face to face
-          (Revelation 21:4) There will be no pain, or sadness, or death
-          (Revelation 21:27) There will be no sin
-          (Isaiah 11:6-9) All creatures will live in perfect harmony with one another
-          Revelation 22:1-5 – We will be allowed to eat from the tree of life again and so we will live forever. (Genesis 2-3 – Tree of life was taken from us so that we couldn’t live forever.)

Though not specifically stated, I believe that we can also infer that life on the new Earth will be what God intended life on this Earth to be like. Adam and Eve worked the Garden of Eden. So I believe that humans on the New Earth will be able to work at things that they enjoy. We won’t worship God all the time, but will live as God intended Adam and Eve to live – working, being creative, enjoying each other’s company, engaging in hobbies, and yes, basking in the presence of God.

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