My family’s home was built in 1900, and, like any home that old, it’s in constant need of repair. For the past three weeks, we’ve been hard at work on our home. This week we should be getting all new ductwork. There’s furniture, wood, tools, and other construction equipment all over the outside of the house. To say that it’s a major disruption for our family is an understatement. But we’re OK with this because we know that the end result will be amazing.
There’s a lot of chaos happening in our world right now and, to tell you the truth, it’s going to get a whole lot worse before it gets any better. Check out what the apostle Peter has to say about it:
“But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything done in it will be laid bare.
“Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat. But in keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells” (2 Peter 3:10–13).
The Old Testament prophet Isaiah gives us another insight into what the “remodeled” earth will look like:
“See, I will create
new heavens and a new earth.
The former things will not be remembered,
nor will they come to mind. . . .
The sound of weeping and of crying
will be heard in it no more. . . .
They will build houses and dwell in them;
they will plant vineyards and eat their fruit. . . .
The wolf and the lamb will feed together,
and the lion will eat straw like the ox,
and dust will be the serpent’s food.
They will neither harm nor destroy
on all my holy mountain,”
says the Lord (Isaiah 65:17, 19, 21, 25).
God will re-create our wreck of a world and live with us forever. We will finally achieve our true potential, living in the love and joy for which God created us. Here’s a summary of what the Bible teaches about this new earth. It’s an official statement of the Seventh-day Adventist Church on the topic:
“On the new earth, in which righteousness dwells, God will provide an eternal home for the redeemed and a perfect environment for everlasting life, love, joy, and learning in His presence. For here, God Himself will dwell with His people, and suffering and death will have passed away. The great controversy will be ended, and sin will be no more. All things, animate and inanimate, will declare that God is love; and He shall reign forever. Amen.”
That’s a beautiful picture, isn’t it? So what happened?
who’s to blame?
God created the original universe, including a glorious angel named Lucifer, who was perfect in all his ways, and he worshiped God for eons (Ezekiel 28:12–14). But Lucifer, of his own free will, stopped worshiping God and chose instead to seek worship for himself (verse 15). He spread lies about God’s loving character and His perfect law of love across all of heaven. He also succeeded in getting a third of heaven’s angels to follow his rebellion against God! Because of that, God banished both Lucifer and his angels, now called Satan and his demons, to earth (Revelation 12:7–9).
Because of his intense hatred toward God, Satan decided to take revenge on humanity. He told Adam and Eve the same lies he had used to manipulate his fellow demons, and this deception caused Adam and Eve to sin (Genesis 3). But, even before God created the first human, He devised a plan—it’s called “the plan of salvation”—to restore and redeem the sinful, fallen, and lost human race (Ephesians 1:3–5; Romans 5:12–21).
they’re all watching!
God could have immediately destroyed Satan and his demons the moment they began spreading lies about Him. But God knew that His angels—and in fact the whole universe—were watching (1 Corinthians 4:9) to see whether Satan’s allegations were true. If God had immediately destroyed Satan, the entire universe would have had questions about God’s love, justice, and ultimately, His character.
Right now, all the created intelligent beings in the universe are watching to see how humanity’s rejection of God will ultimately end. All throughout history, Satan and God have battled for the souls of humanity. Satan has used people, religion, and other forces to stamp out God’s people. Still, in the end, God has always won—and He will ultimately win!
the cosmic conflict
God wants to demonstrate that some humans will follow and obey Him out of a sense of love and gratitude for the salvation and redemption that Jesus, through His death, has offered them. But Satan wants to kill as many people as possible because he hates God and all humanity.
The great controversy theme—the topic of spiritual warfare and its influence on history—is written all throughout the Bible. In fact, the entire Bible is a record documenting the story of rebellious humanity running from God, and God doing what it takes to win us all back! In the midst of this, Satan and his demons are working hard to make humanity believe his lies about God’s character and His perfect law of love. But in the end, Satan will fail and God will prevail!
The Bible predicts more than once that, in the end, God will cleanse our earth with fire and then re-create it. Sin will never rise up a second time (Nahum 1:9). The apostle John saw this incredible scene in a vision:
“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the old heaven and the old earth had disappeared. And the sea was also gone. And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven like a bride beautifully dressed for her husband.
“I heard a loud shout from the throne, saying, ‘Look, God’s home is now among his people! He will live with them, and they will be his people. God himself will be with them. He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.’
“And the one sitting on the throne said, ‘Look, I am making everything new!’ And then he said to me ‘Write this down, for what I tell you is trustworthy and true.’ And he also said, ‘It is finished! I am the Alpha and the Omega—the Beginning and the End. To all who are thirsty I will give freely from the springs of the water of life. All who are victorious will inherit all these blessings, and I will be their God, and they will be my children’ ” (Revelation 21:1–7, NLT*).
When this happens, all those who have accepted God’s loving offer of eternal salvation from sin and death will live in the earth made new with God. Take a look at these verses:
- “God blesses those who are humble, for they will inherit the whole earth” (Matthew 5:5, NLT).
- “The world has now become the Kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he will reign forever and ever” (Revelation 11:15, NLT).
- “No longer will there be a curse upon anything. For the throne of God and of the Lamb will be there, and his servants will worship him. And they will see his face, and his name will be written on their foreheads. And there will be no night there—no need for lamps or sun—for the Lord God will shine on them. And they will reign forever and ever” (Revelation 22:3–5, NLT).
paid in full
My home is more than 100 years old, and, admittedly, its restoration is costing me a lot of money. But the best part about God’s restoration of the entire earth is that it’s absolutely free! Of course, we know that Jesus gave His life as a ransom for you and me when He died on the cross. “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him” (John 3:16, 17, NLT).
All you have to do is accept what He’s already paid for. I hope you do because, in the end, all the dust, destruction, and chaos will be worth it. I can’t wait until the ultimate “remodel” is complete.
Omar Miranda is a health-care professional, regular writer, and proud parent. He lives with his family in Plainville, Georgia, USA.
* Bible verses marked NLT are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.