For very many people in our world today, life is very difficult. They may have problems in their family lives, with lack of money, food, work or housing. Poor health may be a concern. They may have lost loved ones. They may be living in fear of abuse or violence. They may have lost their homes as a result of conflict, disaster or famine.
It is helpful to remind ourselves that however difficult life may be now, God has a perfect plan for our world. We read in Isaiah 65 and Revelation 21 that God has planned a new earth and a new heaven where Jesus will live with his people as our King. He will bring comfort for the sad, healing of pain and an end to death and mourning. There will be no place in this new earth for those motivated by evil. It will be a place of wonderful beauty. There will be no need for people to build churches to worship God in, as his presence will be everywhere.
What a wonderful vision to encourage us today, whatever our situation!
- Read Isaiah 65:17-25. This is how God would like things to be now, if everyone was responsive to his will. What will happen to this present world with all its difficulties (verse 17)?
- What are the first concerns of God mentioned in verses 19 and 20? Consider our own lives now. Would these be your first concerns too?
- Verses 21 and 22 describe a situation where each person will have their own home and their own land. No-one will be exploited in working for others. What difference would this make in our own situation? How would this change life?
- What kind of stability is described in verses 23-25?
- Read Revelation 21:1-4 and 21:22-27. What else do these passages add to the verses in Isaiah 65?
- Reflect on these wonderful pictures and pray for their fulfilment when Christ returns. Contrast our present situation. Is there anything we could do to play a part in bringing some of this to fulfilment in the lives of those around us?
Articles 1, 3, 25, 28 UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights