Thou Lord, in the beginning, hast laid the foundation of the earth / and the heavens are the work of thy hands.
They shall perish, but thou shalt endure / they shall all wax old as a garment;
And as a vesture thou shalt change them, and they shall be changed / but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail.
And: You, Lord, in the beginning, laid the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the works of your hands. They shall perish, but you shall endure. They all will grow old as does a garment, and as a vesture you will change them, and they will be changed. But you are always, and your years shall not fail.
All the heavenly bodies will dissolve.
The skies will roll up like a scroll,
and their stars will all wither
as leaves wither on the vine,
and foliage on the fig tree.
Lift up your eyes to the heavens,
And look on the earth beneath.
For the heavens will vanish away like smoke,
The earth will grow old like a garment,
And those who dwell in it will die in like manner;
But My salvation will be forever,
And My righteousness will not be abolished.
Nevertheless, the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which day the heavens shall perish with terrible noise, and the elements shall melt with heat, and the earth with the works that are in it shall burn.
If all these things will perish, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy living and godliness, looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, in which the heavens shall perish with fire and the elements shall be consumed with heat? Nevertheless, we look for a new heaven and a new earth according to his promise, wherein righteousness dwells.
(2 Peter 3:10-13)
Therefore I will shake the heavens,
And the earth will move out of her place,
In the wrath of the LORD of hosts
And in the day of His fierce anger.
When I put out your light,
I will cover the heavens, and make its stars dark;
I will cover the sun with a cloud,
And the moon shall not give her light.
All the bright lights of the heavens I will make dark over you,
And bring darkness upon your land,”
Says the LORD God.
The sun shall be turned into darkness,
And the moon into blood,
Before the coming of the great and awesome day of the LORD.
Look, the LORD is leaving His place
and coming down to trample
the heights of the earth.
The mountains will melt beneath Him,
and the valleys will split apart,
like wax near a fire,
like water cascading down a mountainside.
Immediately after the tribulations of those days, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give her light, and the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of heaven shall move….
Heaven and earth shall perish, but my words will abide.
(Matthew 24:29, 35)
And I looked when he opened the sixth seal, and lo, there was a great earthquake, and the sun was as black as sackcloth made of hair. And the moon became even as blood; and the stars of heaven fell to the earth, even as a fig tree casts from her her figs when she is shaken by a mighty wind. And heaven vanished away, like a scroll when it is rolled together. And all mountains and isles were moved out of their places.
And the kings of the earth, and the great leaders, and the rich, and the high commanders, and the mighty, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in dens and in the rocks of the hills, and said to the hills and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the presence of him that sits on the seat, and from the wrath of the Lamb! For the great day of his wrath is come, and who can endure it?
“For as the new heavens and the new earth
Which I will make shall remain before Me,” says the LORD,
“So shall your descendants and your name remain.
“For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth;
And the former shall not be remembered or come to mind.
And I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth were vanished away; and there was no more sea.
Bible versions used in this post
- Psalms: Book of Common Prayer, 1662
- Other Old Testament passages: NKJV and HCSB (HCSB indicated by green font)
- New Testament: New Matthew Bible.
John Masefield is one of my favourite poets. My grandfather and father knew many of his poems by heart.
[August 21, 2022: Editors’ notes:
—For some comments made prior to August 21, 2022 that quoted from the post, the text in the comment that was quoted from the post might no longer be an exact match.
—For some comments made prior to August 21, 2022 that quoted from the post, the text in the comment that was quoted from the post might no longer be found in the post.
If you would like to compare the text in the comments made prior to August 21, 2022 that quoted from the post to the post as it is now (August 21, 2022), click here [Internet Archive link] for the most recent Internet Archive copy of the post.]
8 thoughts on “Hope for isolated Christians. God will bring in the New Heavens and New Earth”
Perhaps I am, once again, someone who is WAY different (in any number of ways, for any number of reasons). I do not find hope in the Scripture cited in the original post. The context of the whole Bible (of God) is missing.
I do not find hope in the destruction of God’s creation, nor do I find hope in ANYONE facing God’s judgement, including my evil, abusive family of origin.
While I walk this earth in my version of human hell, there are still glimpses of (mental, physical, emotional and / or spiritual) beauty. These glimpses of beauty might be ephemeral, but (for me) they are still evidence that God has His Hand in His creation.
For me, the “hope of the future” is just that – it is the future.
For me, what counts is how I live my life now.
How I live my life now affects what I will see in the future.
I am so sorry that these Scriptures did not give you any encouragement. We all of us are unique. I know you love and follow God, and I am trusting that He will carry you every step of the way in “how you live your life now”.
I hope I have not misunderstood you, Finding Answers, but my prayer is that someday the promise of the New Heavens and New Earth will give you comfort.
In your comment (5TH JULY 2020 – 7:55 PM), you wrote:
^That may / may not be a possibility, as it depends upon the perspective of the individual reading my comment, as well as the state of mind / circumstances / etc. of that particular individual while they are reading my comment.
I suspect ^That is true for individuals reading the Scripture cited in the original post.
Unfortunately, I cannot put the picture(s) in my mind into words, and I am likely to cause almost everyone hurt / pain / confusion / offence / etc. with my explanation.
I wrote (5TH JULY 2020 – 9:55 AM):
I wrote in an answer to Barb (5TH JULY 2020 – 8:57 PM):
It is helpful for new ACFJ readers if I note some background facts about me.
I was baptized and saved in the hospital when I was six months old.
I am a high-functioning (Christian) Asperger woman who thinks in pictures.
I have Complex-PTSD from a lifetime of abuse, starting with extreme abuse by my “dad” that began on the day I was born.
Except for the first six months of my life (I am nearing my sixth decade), I have not had a moment when I have NOT walked with God.
I do not know what a “normal Christian” (no offence intended) would find hopeful, although I learn (through observation / research / interactions / etc.) what different individuals MIGHT find hopeful / encouraging / etc.
A similar concept applies to ALL the relationships in my life (both now and in the past).
I do NOT do well in relationships where communication does not make allowances for my unique and complex combination of historical facts.
In hindsight, I realize my unique and complex combination of historical facts probably significantly increased the cost of my legal fees when I was going through my divorce. Very big sigh.
In hindsight, I now understand why finding ANY kind of medical doctor is an ongoing battle, especially when appointments are rushed / limited in time / etc.
All ^That might help readers reading my conversation with Barb understand why I wrote:
Wanted to say “thank you” to both Finding Answers and Barb for their honesty. Talking about eternity, even and especially as believers, is not a “one size fits all” subject.
In my observation, professing Christians might be raised to the skies as they literally contemplate being raised to the skies—meeting Him face-to-face. Since no one is sure of the actual date and time of His return, no one can be sure they will still be alive when this happens. But they consider the possibility that it might happen in their lifetime.
Others understandably emit confusion or even doubts about His return. Bring in the endless speculation about who the anti-Christ might or might not be, and very quickly the discouragement runs deep—there is just so much we don’t know and therefore cannot effectively plan for. We must wait on and trust in Him.
Ironically, for those of us that have committed to live by faith in Him, that can actually be pretty offensive to hear! Faith in Him trusts without fully knowing, even fully understanding, but fully trusting that He is true to His word.
I have more unsaved loved ones than saved. While there are many that ask Him to return ASAP, I ask Him to delay His return because of the many souls that I am still praying for. I understand that after the rapture, the world will not literally be ending, but things will be very, very difficult.
I might be able to protect the bodies of those unsaved loved ones, but I cannot protect their souls from eternity. Every single person will have to face Him, with or without His blood speaking for them.
I have mixed feelings about eternity, because well, I live down HERE, not up there—not yet! So as I attempt to cling to that Living Hope for the here and now, and LIVE in the here and now, but also remember my futuristic but permanent resting place.
And no matter WHAT, while I aim to not fear death in the here and now (think of it as graduating to the next level, aka eternal life) there is no doubt my mortality is a difficult subject, to say the least.
But overall, I thank Barb for posting this. The verses and the poem were beautiful. They aren’t easy to read, even harder to understand or fully trust Him for, but they speak of His rock solid, never wavering faithfulness.
They speak of a pure and passionate Father who assures us that one day, there will be no more sighing, no more sorrow, no more tears—not ONE single tear—ever again.
No more fear, no more danger, no more heartbreak, heartache. No more brokenness, inside or out.
That is a Father who understands the depths of suffering, to be so assuring AND reassuring that one day—pain in every respect (physical, emotional, etc.) will no longer be an issue. We will literally be safe in His arms for all time, all the time.
Three years ago today, I lost my beloved first dog to cancer, two days after I learned she had cancer. I was absolutely crushed / devastated. I was in no way prepared to let go, but I had no choice. I tried to comfort her in her last moments, by telling her it was okay to go. I told her to go be with Jesus.
But mentally, I was literally hoping and praying she WOULD BE with Jesus. After she died, I often cried out to God asking Him to let me have her again in heaven. My sister comforted me with the verse in Romans 8:19:
I got another dog not long afterward. I did not want to. I never wanted to go through that pain again, but the grief was intense for several weeks without abating at all. My sister and others prescribed getting another dog. I was desperate. I could not stand going home to my house that no longer had her.
The second dog made it okay to come home again. He came with his own stresses, though. Plus he was in a no-win situation. In whatever he did, he either was not at all like her with some things (to my chagrin) or occasionally he was like her in some ways causing me to miss her all the more. I’ve only recently realized I am now just as attached to him, and I appreciate who he is, but I digress.
It’s true that God created the beauty we see today. It was created perfect, but from the time of the fall of Satan from heaven and Adam and Eve’s Fall in the garden, to include all the subsequent evil through today, the creation has been sent on a trajectory to destruction. From the moment of our birth and the birth of animals on we are all on that trajectory.
I struggle to give my dog his monthly “medicines” because I wonder if that could have caused the cancer in my first dog. The “medicines” are in reality pesticides to kill fleas, ticks, and parasites. Both giving and not giving it to him can have bad consequences. Mosquitos love me unfortunately. They can carry awful diseases. One mosquito bite could kill us. Why is it like this?
Someone recently sent me a photo of myself at a church get together when I was in college. I don’t remember it, but I look and marvel at how young I look and wonder why that same person is not what I see in the mirror today.
To repeat Romans 8:19 & add verses 20-25:
To make a short story long, there is currently evil and destruction, yet we are to lead righteous lives while being subjected to it. There is some hope in the destruction of evil / vindication of the righteous, but I believe Barbara’s main point is the ultimate hope is in Jesus’ return and there will be a new heaven and a new earth where righteousness will prevail and there will not be a trajectory to destruction.
[To ensure the visibility of the chapter and verses cited by Sister, blockquotes were placed around Romans 8:19-25. Reaching Out.]
Thank you, Sister! I was blessed by re-reading that passage from Romans 8. 🙂
I certainly agree that for myself now as for Christians down the ages, the knowledge that in heaven God will wipe away every tear from my eye is a solid hope and encouragement.