I just entered an Extreme Makeover contest, where you submit your "makeover 'dream'." For us who are cosmetically challenged, this offers real hope! But there is a makeover that is not a mere dream.
I recently read the book "Heaven" by Randy Alcorn. It is a very thorough treatment of the subject. A little speculation is involved, but the research is true to Scripture. There is a famous maxim to consider when buying a home: "Location, location, location." This becomes even more important as we look toward our eternal dwelling place.
This is a new year, full of promise and hope. We expect things to be new this year: new opportunities, new governments, new body parts, etc. We cannot predict what will happen tomorrow (Proverbs 27:1), but we hope for the best. Is there anything we can be sure of for the future?
God gives sure promises in his Word for those who believe. He ends the Bible with this sweeping promise: "Behold, I make all things new . . . Write, for these words are true and faithful" (Revelation 21:5, NKJV). Christ is the guarantee of the veracity of God's Word: "For all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen, to the glory of God through us" (2 Corinthians 1:20).
The "all things" that God makes new are as extreme as makeovers can get.
The promises begin when a person repents of sin and accepts Jesus as Lord and Savior. "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new" (2 Corinthians 5:17). God makes us over into new people, with new desires, new goals, new character, and a new way of life. We have "put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him" (Colossians 3:10).
Our Creator promises us a new name. "I will give him a white stone, and on the stone a new name written which no one knows except him who receives it" (Revelation 2:17). A white stone represented a vote for someone. Jesus casts his vote for us, and gives us a new name as a sign of his authority and our intimacy.
The Great Physician promises us a new body: "[He] will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subdue all things to Himself" (Philippians 3:21).
Our Heavenly Father gives us a new family. "[T]here is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My sake and the gospel's, who shall not receive a hundredfold now in this time . . . and in the age to come, eternal life" (Mark 10:29, 30).
The One Who inspired the Psalms gives us new songs: "He has put a new song in my mouth-Praise to our God; Many will see it and fear, and will trust in the LORD" (Psalm 40:3).
God's extremely extreme makeover extends beyond our selves, as if that isn't enough. The Carpenter from Nazareth's contract states, "In My Father's house are many mansions . . . I go to prepare a place for you. I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also" (John 14: 2, 3).
He gives more details in the last book of the Bible:
Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea. Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, "Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away." Then He who sat on the throne said, "Behold, I make all things new." And He said to me, "Write, for these words are true and faithful" (21:1-5).
Happy NEW Year!
Alan is a freelance devotional writer for Lifestyles Over 50 and the Allentown, PA, Morning Call. He is also the Peer-less Reviewer (General Editor) for Bridgeway Homeschool Academy in Catasauqua, PA, a Christian homeschool academy. Passionate about reviving theology and church methodology.
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