“Then He who sat on the throne said, ‘Behold, I make all things new’ ” (Revelation 21:5).
ALL OF US KNOW THE EXCITEMENT THAT COMES FROM STARTING OVER. Perhaps that’s why we enjoy springtime so much. It’s a fresh beginning. Old growth is gone, and everything is green again. But imagine a land where everything is always as if it had just been refreshed and rejuvenated. That would be heaven.
If we’ve obeyed the gospel and are living faithfully to Christ, then there is a sense in which all things have become new for us already (2 Corinthians 5:17). And when the apostle John heard God say, “Behold, I make all things new,” there is a sense in which we can say that God has already begun to do that for His people.
But the richest experience of newness that even the most faithful Christian can have right now will pale in comparison to the newness that will be ours in heaven. If you are a Christian and you think there is a big difference between your life right now and the one you used to have, just wait till you see the difference between what you have right now and what you’ll have with God in eternity. What we now enjoy is but a tiny foretaste of eternity.
I predict that one of the things we’ll find most striking about heaven is the absence of anything resembling decay or decline. Right now, even our highest and purest joys are attacked by age and decrepitude. No sooner have we begun to enjoy something than it is taken away from us, and we’ve only started to appreciate its beauty when it withers away. But in eternity, neither the beauty or value of anything will be diminished by the aging process. Not only will everything be new, but it will stay new.
I make the prediction in the preceding paragraph because I believe everything in heaven will partake of God’s nature, in which there is no loss due to age. “Of old You laid the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the work of Your hands. They will perish, but You will endure; yes, they will all grow old like a garment; like a cloak You will change them, and they will be changed. But You are the same, and Your years will have no end” (Psalm 102:25–27). Given the nature of God, I’m looking for heaven to be a place where the word “new” has a whole “new” meaning.
“In eternity everything is just beginning” (Elias Canetti).