"All Things Are Become New"

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"All Things Are Become New"

Post by Romans » Fri Jan 05, 2018 1:40 pm

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“All Things Are Become New” by Romans


Happy New Year! Two days ago, on Monday, we began a New Year: 2018. And I am sure we are all looking forward to or at least hoping that the New Year will be a healthy and prosperous one for each of us, our families, our individual countries, and our planet. We have been going through some rough times lately, individually, collectively, nationally and internationally. So we would all do well to have a new start, a fresh and positive start as the New Year begins.

The word, “New,” of and by itself, is generally regarded as a positive word. Advertising companies have made millions of dollars by introducing or promoting products in almost every category as being “new and improved,” perhaps so often that it means almost nothing to us when we hear it any more... There is a particular quotation that I researched for tonight's Discussion about new products. According to ask.yahoo.com, there is a humorous, but false story about Charles H. Duell, who was Commissioner of Patents in 1899. According to the account, the head of the U.S. Patent Office sent his resignation to President McKinley urging the closing of the office because "everything that could be invented has been invented."

When I first heard that story, I thought about how funny it would be to be able to adjust the dials of time and space. If I could have made some adjustments, on the morning he was going to submit his resignation because “everything had been invented,” I would have taken him, bed and all, and put him at the end of a runway where a 747 was taking off right over his head. I doubt he would have submitted his resignation. According, however, to The Great Idea Finder, Mr. Duell was far from either being short-sighted or pessimistic about the future of new inventions and patents. In fact, he even encouraged Congress to improve the patent system.” So that story, if you have heard it before, has no actual basis in fact.

In the Bible, Solomon wrote in Ecclesiastes 1:9: “The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.”

Well, perhaps Solomon did not expect me to be able to sit, here, at my own kitchen table in Virginia, and be able to speak into a plastic box, in a normal speaking voice, and to literally have people all over the world instantly hear me as I quoted his words. But then, as I think about it, he was correct after all. Too often, our incredible technology has served to enable mankind to obey or disobey God more quickly, thoroughly and efficiently. So since Solomon was actually referring to obedience and disobedience, and not the technology used to perform it, he was right: "... there is no new thing under the sun."

But where God's activities are concerned, the Bible has much to say about new things. In the spirit of the New Year, I decided to present a Discussion about just that: the title of this evening's Discussion is “All Things Are Become New.” I think you will be surprised as I was in preparing these Notes, the scope and the breadth of how many times and in how many ways “newness” is discussed in the Scriptures.

I will be using many topics and Scriptures this evening with some help from Thompson's Chain Reference Bible, under the topic, and from Torrey's Topical Textbook. The Scriptures and topics I will use tonight will be scattered and reassigned into various combinations of Themes so I won't be able to give specific credit to each Source when they are being used. That is why I am giving them general credit in this introduction for the assistance they both provided me. I also plan to supplement the supplied verses with commentaries from some of my favorite Bible scholars. Having said all of that, let us begin.

I was curious, however, to see where and how the word “new” was first used in Scripture. It is found in Exodus 1:8-10: “Now there arose up a new king over Egypt, which knew not Joseph. And he said unto his people, Behold, the people of the children of Israel are more and mightier than we: Come on, let us deal wisely with them; lest they multiply, and it come to pass, that, when there falleth out any war, they join also unto our enemies, and fight against us, and so get them up out of the land.” After all the good that Joseph had done in Egypt, enough time had passed that the rescue from the famine, and potential national catastrophe were long forgotten. The much-enjoyed Egyptian prosperity afforded by Joseph's God-given ability to interpret Pharaoh's dreams had long been forgotten. And... a “new king” had come to power.

This use of the word “new” had no immediate positive connotations for the Hebrews living in Egypt. Many generations would pass before they would be delivered from the cruel and merciless bondage that was imposed on them by this “new” king.

Several chapters later, after their deliverance, the word “new” appears again. As before with the “new king and its aftermath, the application of the word “new” is not a positive one here, either. Allow me to set the stage for you: The children of Israel had been delivered from Egypt, but they were thankless murmurers, and miserable complainers. On top of their ceaseless whining, Moses' authority to lead was also challenged. We read of Korah, and others taking men and rising up against Moses along with two hundred and fifty princes of the assembly... men of renown. God instructed Moses as to how to handle their doubt as to whether Moses was indeed chosen to lead the children of Israel, which brings us to this next occasion of the word, “new.”

We read, beginning in Numbers 16:28: “And Moses said, Hereby ye shall know that the LORD hath sent me to do all these works; for I have not done them of mine own mind. If these men...” (the rebels) “...die the common death of all men... then the LORD hath not sent me. But if the LORD make a new thing, and the earth open her mouth, and swallow them up, with all that appertain unto them, and they go down quick into the pit; then ye shall understand that these men have provoked the LORD. And it came to pass, as he had made an end of speaking all these words, that the ground clave asunder that was under them: And the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed them up, and their houses, and all the men that appertained unto Korah, and all their goods.”

The two occasions of the word “new” that I just used are the only two I plan to use where there is no specific Theme involved. I thought they were significant enough to cite, because the first one that I cited was also the very first time the word “new” appears in Scripture. The second occasion I used was a few Books later, and I used it because God was shown to be doing a new thing when the ground opened up to swallow those men of renown who withstood Moses. 

As we go through the Bible, the word “new” appears 153 times and in a wide variety of contexts. While I think it would be an interesting review to go over many of them, I decided instead to focus on the most edifying occasions of the word. And, I have found, in every case, that it is most edifying when it was applied to something “new” for which God is responsible. In every instance I will cite in the remainder of this Discussion, the word “new” is used in a positive, mind-altering, heart-altering, life-altering, creation-altering , and even Universe-altering context. And, in each case, it is a new thing in which God is the sole Source, the exclusive Initiator and the only Being capable of seeing to it that the new thing comes to pass.

Let's see what New Things God has planned for those who believe in Him, who trust that Scripture is His written Word, and who have accepted His Son's death for us to pay our sin debt. We read in Ezekiel 36:26 : “A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.”

A new heart and a new spirit. These are just two elements of another new thing God both proposed and brought to pass: The New Covenant. Of it, Matthew Henry writes “All that have an interest in the new covenant, have a new heart and a new spirit, in order to their walking in newness of life. God would give a heart of flesh, a soft and tender heart, complying with his holy will. Renewing grace works as great a change in the soul, as the turning a dead stone into living flesh. God will put his Spirit within, as a Teacher, Guide, and Sanctifier. The promise of God's grace to fit us for our duty, should quicken our constant care and endeavour to do our duty. These are promises to be pleaded by, and will be fulfilled to, all true believers in every age.”

The New Things that God Promises will come are Of Divine Origin
John 1:13: “Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.”

The Bible Tell us that, as Christians, we are a New Creation:
We read in 2 Corinthians 5:17: “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.”

Albert Barnes writes, “Therefore if any man be in Christ - The phrase to “be in Christ,” evidently means to be united to Christ by faith; or to be in him as the branch is in the vine - that is, so united to the vine, or so in it, as to derive all its nourishment and support from it, and to be sustained entirely by it. To be “in Christ” denotes a more tender and close union; and implies that all our support is from him. All our strength is derived from him; and denotes further that we shall partake of his fullness, and share in his felicity and glory, as the branch partakes of the strength and vigor of the parent vine.

A new creature - Margin, “Let him be.” This is one of the instances in which the margin has given a less correct translation than is in the text. The idea evidently is, not that he ought to be a new creature, but that he is in fact; not that he ought to live as becomes a new creature - which is true enough - but that he will in fact live in that way, and manifest the characteristics of the new creation. It means a new creation in a moral sense, and the phrase new creature is equivalent to the expression in Ephesians_4:24, which says, “The new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.” It means, evidently, that there is a change produced in the renewed heart of man that is equivalent to the act of creation, and that bears a strong resemblance to it - a change, so to speak, as if the man was made over again, and had become new.
Old things are passed away - The old views in regard to the Messiah, and in regard to people in general. But Paul also gives this a general form of expression, and says that old things in general have passed away - referring to everything. It was true of all who were converted that old things had passed away. And it may include the following things:
(1) In regard to the Jews - that their former prejudices against Christianity, their natural pride, and spirit of seducing others; their attachment to their rites and ceremonies, and dependence on them for salvation had all passed away. They now renounced that independence, relied on the merits of the Saviour, and embraced all as brethren who were of the family of Christ.
(2) In regard to the Gentiles - their attachment to idols, their love of sin and degradation, their dependence on their own works, had passed away, and they had renounced all these things, and had come to mingle their hopes with those of the converted Jews, and with all who were the friends of the Redeemer.
(3) In regard to all, it is also true that old things pass away. Their former prejudices, opinions, habits, attachments pass away. Their supreme love of self passes away. Their love of sins passes away. Their love of the world passes away. Their supreme attachment to their earthly friends rather than God passes away. Their love of sin, their sensuality, pride, vanity, levity, ambition, passes away. There is a deep and radical change on all these subjects - a change which commences at the new birth; which is carried on by progressive sanctification; and which is consummated at death and in heaven.
Behold, all things are become new - That is, all things in view of the mind. The purposes of life, the feelings of the heart, the principles of action, all become new. The understanding is consecrated to new objects, the body is employed in new service, the heart forms new attachments. Nothing can be more strikingly descriptive of the facts in conversion than this; nothing more entirely accords with the feelings of the newborn soul. All is new. There are new views of God, and of Jesus Christ; new views of this world and of the world to come; new views of truth and of duty; and everything is seen in a new aspect and with new feelings. Nothing is more common in young converts than such feelings, and nothing is more common than for them to say that all things are new.
The Bible seems to be a new book, and though they may have often read it before, yet there is a beauty about it which they never saw before, and which they wonder they have not before perceived. The whole face of nature seems to them to be changed, and they seem to be in a new world. The hills, and vales, and streams; the sun, the stars, the groves, the forests, seem to be new. A new beauty is spread over them all; and they now see them to be the work of God, and his glory is spread over them all, and they can now say: “My Father made them all.” The heavens and the earth are filled with new wonders, and all things seem now to speak forth the praise of God... and there are new feelings toward all people; a new kind of love to kindred and friends; and a love before unfelt for enemies; and a new love for all mankind.”

Regeneration is Necessary to Salvation

We read in Titus 3:3: “For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another. But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared, Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;”

As a result of our being renewed by the Holy Spirit, the Bible speaks not merely of a brand-newness where believers are concerned, but there is the added sense that we are creatures that never before existed on the earth: We read in James 1:18: “Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.”

The Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary says, “a kind of first-fruits — Christ is, in respect to the resurrection, “the first-fruits” as we read in 1 Corinthians 15. Believers, in respect to regeneration, are, as it were, first-fruits (image from the consecration of the first-born of man, cattle, and fruits to God; familiar to the Jews addressed), that is, they are the first of God’s regenerated creatures, and the pledge of the ultimate regeneration of the creation, where also the Spirit, the divine agent of the believer’s regeneration, is termed “the first-fruits,” that is, the earnest {or, surety} that the regeneration now begun in the soul, shall at last extend to the body too, and to the lower parts of creation. Of all God’s visible creatures, believers are the noblest part, and like the legal “first-fruits,” sanctify the rest; for this reason they are much tried now.”

We, as spiritually renewed Christians, experience our whole being starting over again from scratch:
2 Corinthians 5:17: “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;”

Notice, also what we find in 1 Peter 1:3-4: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you...”

Adam Clarke writes, “Begotten us again unto a lively hope - I think the apostle has a reference here to his own case, and that of his fellow apostles, at the time that Christ was taken by the Jews and put to death. Previously to this time they had strong confidence that he was the Messiah, and that it was he who should redeem Israel; but when they found that he actually expired upon the cross, and was buried, they appear to have lost all hope of the great things which before they had in prospect. This is feelingly expressed by the two disciples whom our Lord, after his resurrection, overtook on the road going to Emmaus, (see Luk_24:13-24). And the hope, that with them, died with their Master, and seemed to be buried in his grave, was restored by the certainty of his resurrection. It is the Gospel alone that gives the well grounded hope of eternal life; and the ground on which this hope rests is the resurrection of Christ himself. The certainty of our Lord’s resurrection is the great seal of the Gospel.”

We also find that we are renewed by the Word of God, itself:
1 Peter 1:22: “Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently: Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.”

What does Scripture tell us about this New Covenant? Perhaps I should ask first, how and why did the Old Covenant even become an Old Covenant? A Covenant is an agreement between two parties to perform various things. When someone rents an apartment, the renter promises to pay the rent on time, and keep up the property in various ways, while the landlord offers a place to stay, and a promise to repair leaky pipes and leaky roofs, and make sure the heat and air conditioning works in the winter and summer. It is a covenant not in so many words. Well God had proposed a Covenant with Israel: If they obeyed His Commands, he would Bless and protect them as a nation... as His chosen people.

Exodus 31:16 identifies that Covenant between God and Israel as “a perpetual covenant,” so... what happened?
How and why was a New Covenant even necessary as a replacement? Because of something else that was perpetual that we read of in Jeremiah 8:5: “Why then is this people of Jerusalem slidden back by a perpetual backsliding? they hold fast deceit, they refuse to return.” Jesus phrased Israel's resistance to God with these words found in Luke 13:34: “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, which killest the prophets, and stonest them that are sent unto thee; how often would I have gathered thy children together, as a hen doth gather her brood under her wings, and ye would not!”

After Israel was delivered from Egypt, God presented them with terms of a Covenant they were to abide by. The enthusiastically agreed to those terms in Exodus 19:8: “And all the people answered together and said, 'All that the LORD hath spoken we will do.'” But beginning with that generation, and then through the centuries, generation after generation, they broke God's Laws, trampled His statutes under foot, and committed spiritual adultery. As with the Apartment Lease, if the tenant stops paying the rent, or the landlord doesn't repair the hot water heater, the Lease is void. Israel's rebellion voided the Covenant. We read in Hebrews 8:8: “For finding fault with them, he saith, Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah:”

Let's re-read the foretelling of that New Covenant in greater detail in Jeremiah 31:31: “Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah: Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the LORD: But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people.”

This New Covenant is made possible only by the Sacrifice of Jesus Christ, by His shed blood. We read beginning in Matthew 26:26: “And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body. And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.”

Romans 11:25: “For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in. And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins.”

A Deliverer was to come out of Sion. Centuries of sacrificed animals for sins of all kinds had not diminished the need for more animals to be sacrificed for, as yet, uncommitted sins. But God had done something new. All of those sacrificed animals pointed the Way to the Lamb of God Who only need be sacrificed once and for all. 

We read of that in Hebrews 10, beginning in Verse 10: “By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins: But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God; From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool. For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.”

And the benefits of being rescued by that Deliverer is spoken of in Romans 7:6: “But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter.”

Of this, Adam Clarke writes, That we should serve in newness of spirit - We are now brought under a more spiritual dispensation; now we know the spiritual import of all the Mosaic precepts. We see that the law referred to the Gospel, and can only be fulfilled by the Gospel.
The oldness of the letter - The merely literal rites, ceremonies, and sacrifices are now done away; and the newness of the spirit, the true intent and meaning of all are now fully disclosed; so that we are got from an imperfect state into a state of perfection and excellence. We sought justification and sanctification, pardon and holiness, by the law, and have found that the law could not give them: we have sought these in the Gospel scheme, and we have found them. We serve God now, not according to the old literal sense, but in the true spiritual meaning.”
Hebrews 12:24 tells us that Jesus is “the mediator of the New Covenant.” Are there any other mediators? Anyone else involved in seeing to it there there not be a repeat of the failings that befell the first Covenant? No... We are clearly told in 1 Timothy 2:5: “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” Jesus is the Author and Finisher of our Faith... He is our High Priest... but He is far more because, as we read in Hebrews 4:15: “For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.”

That is why the New Covenant has the provision that we read in Ezekiel 11:19: “And I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within you; and I will take the stony heart out of their flesh, and will give them an heart of flesh: That they may walk in my statutes, and keep mine ordinances, and do them: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God.”

Jesus' intervention in our lives is what enables the Scriptures to call us New Creatures... brand New Creatures.
Ephesians 2:10: “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.”

We are re-created in Christ as a “new man:” Notice in Ephesians 4:24: “And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.”

Colossians 3:10: “And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him:”

We are renewed in knowledge. Paul wrote in Romans 12:2: “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”

Let's not miss the full impact of Paul's statement. The Greek word that Paul used when he wrote that we should be transformed is “metamorfoo,” from which we get the English word, metamorphosis.
Paul tells us that our transformation from who and what we were before God called us out of darkness into His marvelous light, should be as radical a change as what happens when a caterpillar becomes a butterfly. There is no resemblance between those two creatures, and the same should be true of us. We have, in God's eyes, become new creatures, unrecognizable from who and what we were:

2 Corinthians 5:17: “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” It was not only a New Covenant that supplanted the Old, it was a better Covenant, and was called better in a number of places, and for a number of reasons: We read in Hebrews 8:6: “But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises.”

The promises of the Old Covenant assured prosperity and safety to God's people on an earthly and physical plane. Everyone who lived under the terms and promises of the Old Covenant, also died natural deaths under the terms and promises of the Old Covenant. The promises of the New Covenant go far beyond living a limited physical existence within the confines of a single geographic area, however blessed that life or land was.

Matthew Henry writes of this: “But the covenant here referred to, was that made with Israel as a nation, securing temporal benefits to them. The promises of all spiritual blessings, and of eternal life, revealed in the gospel, and made sure through Christ, are of infinitely greater value. Let us bless God that we have a High Priest that suits our helpless condition.”

The New Covenant was delivered via a Better Revelation:
We read in Hebrews 1:1-4: “God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high; Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they.”
The original covenant was delivered and administered by various men, leaders and prophets. The New Covenant was delivered, made possible and administered and mediated by the Son of God, Whose voluntary sacrifice brought it about to begin with.

The New Covenant provided a Better Hope
Hebrews 7:19: “For the law made nothing perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope did; by the which we draw nigh unto God.”

The Sermon Bible says, “The Apostle announces a great principle in the words, "The law made nothing perfect." There was not a single point in which the law reached the end, for the end of the law is Christ. The imperfection of the law appears in these three points especially—(1) The forgiveness of sin; (2) Access unto God was not perfected under the old dispensation; (3) They had not received the Holy Ghost as an indwelling spirit. The law made nothing perfect. For perfection is true, substantial, and eternal communion with God through a perfect mediation, and this perfect mediation we have obtained in the Lord Jesus Christ.”

The New Covenant is characterized by a Better Priesthood:
We read in Hebrews 7:20-28: “And inasmuch as not without an oath he was made priest: (For those priests were made without an oath; but this with an oath by him that said unto him, The Lord sware and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec:) By so much was Jesus made a surety of a better testament. And they truly were many priests, because they were not suffered to continue by reason of death:

But this man, because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood. Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them. For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens; Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people's: for this he did once, when he offered up himself. For the law maketh men high priests which have infirmity; but the word of the oath, which was since the law, maketh the Son, who is consecrated for evermore.”

The New Covenant was ratified with Better Sacrifices
Hebrews 9:23: “It was therefore necessary that the patterns of things in the heavens should be purified with these; but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these. For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us:”

The New Covenant offers Better Possessions
We read in Hebrews 10:34: “For ye had compassion of me in my bonds, and took joyfully the spoiling of your goods, knowing in yourselves that ye have in heaven a better and an enduring substance.”

The New Covenant promises a Better Resurrection
Notice Hebrews 11:35: “Women received their dead raised to life again: and others were tortured, not accepting deliverance; that they might obtain a better resurrection:”

The New Covenant promises our being Raised from Physical and Spiritual Death
Romans 8:11: “But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.”
Ephesians 2:1: “And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins;”

Colossians 2:13: “And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses;”

And lastly Colossians 3:1: “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.
For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.” We shall appear with Him in Glory. The Old Covenant never came remotely close to a such a Promise for those who lived under it.

Concerning all of the righteous departed named in the opening Verses of Hebrews 11, we read in Hebrews 11:13: “These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. For they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country. And truly, if they had been mindful of that country from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have returned. But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city.”

What city has been prepared for those under the New Covenant? And why do we need a New City to be prepared for us? That is answered in Hebrews 13:14: “For here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come.”
That City, the New Jerusalem, is the next and permanent step in the establishment of the Kingdom of God after Jesus returns to set up the initial phase of the Kingdom, ruling on the earth for 1,000 years. Jesus taught us to pray for it daily in the Lord's Prayer when we pray the phrase “Thy Kingdom come.” The Apostle John witnessed the coming of that City in Revelation 21:2: “And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.”

John continues in Revelation 21:10: “And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God.” And when that happens, the New Covenant also makes provision for the re-creation of not just the arrival of a New Jerusalem, but of the entire planet and the entire Cosmos as we know it!

And we read of it in both the Old and the New Testaments:
In the Old Testament, we read in Isaiah 65:17: “For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind.” And then in Isaiah 66:22: “For as the new heavens and the new earth, which I will make, shall remain before me, saith the LORD, so shall your seed and your name remain.”

Peter and John speak of it in the New Testament: Peter in 2 Peter 3:13: “Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.” And John in Revelation 21:1: “And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away...”

When all is said and done, and everything is new, we read of our place in that New Heavens and New Earth in Revelation 3:12: “Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.”

We have already begun taking our first steps in the New Year: 2018. We look forward to good things in the coming year, and we hope that the New Year will bring our families and our nations stability and health and prosperity. But Scripture holds out to us Promises of New and Wonderful Things, beyond our ability to imagine or express them, that God has been eagerly anticipating to shower on those who love and obey Him.

We serve a God of inestimable Majesty and Glory Whose good pleasure it is to invite us to share as joint heirs with Christ, not just Eternal Life and Fellowship with Him but also a New Jerusalem, a New Heaven and a New Earth and Blessings that we cannot begin to grasp. I will close with this Verse found in Revelation 21:5: “And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful.”

This concludes this Evening's Discussion: “All Things Are Become New.”

This Discussion was originally presented “live” on January 3rd, 2018.

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