January 2014


"l AM making all things new"
[Revelation 21.5]. See also: Isa iah 43. 18-19 & 2 Corinthians 5.17

In a New Year you may be asking: What's new? Life goes on in the same old way: the world still seems to be on a disaster course: people haven't changed: and I don't feel any different today than I did yesterday.

But God keeps saying to us: I AM making all things new.

In a sense this must be true. From the human perspective, tomorrow does not yet exist, nor indeed does the next hour, minute or even the next second or nano-second. God has so ordered creation that newness is happening all the ti me. To grasp this fact requires vision, especially when the odds seem stacked against you and life is dire.

By the grace of God th ere are three visionaries in Scripture to help us keep our own vision clear. John of Patmos, who gave us the Bible's final book, looks beyond the troubl ed world and sees the glory of God. The book of Revelation is not easy reading, nor is it comforting or comfortable. It is as full of disastrous events as the modern world appears to be. Yet God is triumphant throughout, and the promise of a "new heaven and a new earth" comes loud and clear at the concl usion.

Now make a point of checking out the prophet of the Exile by looking up Isaiah 43. 18-19, and ponder over this Saying too. Exile is a diminishing and depressing experience. Against all odds, the unknown prophet proclaims God's Word of hope and renewal.

In addition, listen to Saint Paul in 2 Corinthians 5.17. The apostle is smitten by the sheer novelty of the Gospel. For him, the experience of Christ br ings radical newness into the world. In Christ, nothing can ever be the same again. And faith in Jesus as Lord and Saviour is capable of total and irrevers ible re-newal for each and every individual believer.

It is vital that we should hear and deeply receive the spirit and life of th is Saying, for ourselves, for our Church, for our society, and for our world.