by Peter Berg
As I reflect on the glory and wonder of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, I am inevitably drawn to consider the new heavens and the new earth promised in Revelation 21-22. At the end of this age, God will make all things new, and there will be no more death, nor crying, nor tears, nor pain. Best of all, God will dwell with us—his glory will be revealed to us so fully that the Book of Revelation explains that we will not need the sun because God will be our light. Being perfected in the Son, we will be able to approach God directly, and he will wipe away every tear from our eyes.
Of course, the foundation for this hope, for this glorious future, is the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Even more, the resurrected Christ is the first fruits of the new creation; he is the beginning of that new age. When he rose from the dead, the new world broke into the old world through him. The age of holiness, joy and life broke into the age of sin, sorrow and death. But it is not only Christ who shines the light of the new creation into this dark world. All who are found in Christ share in his new creation nature. As Paul says in 2 Corinthians “…if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” Christians everywhere are new creation. In Christ, we mysteriously bear this wonderful future reality in the present.
This speaks powerfully about who we are and how we must live. As members of the resurrected Christ we are bearers of the new creation. We are no longer citizens of the fallen world, but belong to the new. We have been raised with Christ, and must seek the things that are above, putting on compassion, kindness, meekness, humility, patience, and thankfulness. We forgive as we have been forgiven (Col 3:1-17). Above all, we practice love—love for God, love for his Church, and love for those who do not yet know Christ. This love drives us to work to make this present world a little more like the future one. As there will be no pain, mourning, or tears, we work to heal, to reconcile and to bring peace. As the new world will be filled with life, light, and beauty, we work to fill this world with songs, paintings, sculptures, dances, that reflect the glory of the Creator and Redeemer. As we will see the Father, we strive to introduce everyone to his Son.
Alleluia, Christ is Risen! May our lives always proclaim his glorious resurrection.