DayBreaks for 6/30/14 – Awaiting the New Heavens and Earth
Isaiah 65:25 (NLT) The wolf and the lamb will feed together. The lion will eat hay like a cow. But the snakes will eat dust. In those days no one will be hurt or destroyed on my holy mountain. I, the LORD, have spoken!
In that marvelous vision known as the “Peaceable Kingdom” (which we find in Isaiah 65), there is the image of the wolf and the lamb feeding together. Let me tell you a story about that.
Back in the days of pre-perestroika Russia … when hers was a name that made all of us tremble: the Russians brought an exhibit to the World’s Fair that was entitled “World Peace.” In it was a large cage. And in the cage were a little lamb and a Russian wolf … feeding peaceably together. As an exhibit, it was most impressive. And as the fair unfolded, it was spectacularly attended. One day, however, somebody asked the curator the obvious question: “How in the world do you do it?” To which he replied: “Oh, it’s really very simple. We replace the lamb every morning.”
Right now we do not live in the “Peaceable Kingdom”. At least, not fully. Nature (including human nature) is still dripping red in tooth and claw, the grass and dust of this world bathed in much spilled blood. One can scarcely open Facebook without seeing stories about pets or animals that have been hurt and rescued. The shame and anguish if it is that they were hurt at all.
Daily the news is chock-full of stories of death, butchery (yes, even in the name of religion), torture, humiliation, dishonesty, bodily and character assassination…it’s a long, long list. No, we do not yet live in the Peaceable Kingdom, not like we someday shall.
It frustrates me, angers me and puzzles me how some think that there is glory and honor to be found in detonating a strapped-on bomb in the middle of a peaceful crowd of men, women and children. I do not understand those who pull men and boys, women and children, from their bed in the darkness of the night and take them outside to shoot or behead them or abuse them in the name of their god or for any other reason at all!
As Christians we should long for and expect the imminent coming of the new heavens and new earth. We should pray fervently for it I can only think of one good reason why we may not be eager for it to arrive: if we are living in such a way that we know is not pleasing to God and we are in need of repentance!
Let us lift our voices as one mighty request for the new heavens and new earth to arrive this day. I love how the following verses express it – that once they have come, NO ONE will even THINK about the old heavens and earth any longer! Whatever they held will be gone, done, wiped away from memory and their place taken with something much sweeter!
Isaiah 65:17 (NLT) Look! I am creating new heavens and a new earth, and no one will even think about the old ones anymore.
2 Peter 3:11-13 (MSG) Since everything here today might well be gone tomorrow, do you see how essential it is to live a holy life? 12 Daily expect the Day of God, eager for its arrival. The galaxies will burn up and the elements melt down that day— 13 but we’ll hardly notice. We’ll be looking the other way, ready for the promised new heavens and the promised new earth, all landscaped with righteousness.
A new heaven and new earth…landscaped with righteousness! Won’t that be a sight! Right now it is just beyond our vision…but it is a promised, coming day that will last forever!
PRAYER: Come quickly, Lord Jesus, to create that new dwelling with everything is new and totally enveloped in righteousness (including us!) In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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