Getting started: an introduction to the next 14 days
The idea of 'meditating' on something, let alone the new creation, might be a new idea to us. But meditating on the Bible, as we thought about during our online weekend away, is just thinking about the Bible. We do that with all the parts of our minds, so God’s word changes us as the Bible writers intended.
Some of us may want to think more about the new creation but aren’t sure where to begin. Over the next 14 days, we'll be publishing a daily devotional for you to use as a way of starting to think about the new creation for yourself.
Each devotional will contain:
- A Bible passage: to see what God says about the new creation
- Thinking about the new creation and prayer: a segment which will take around 15 minutes to work through. We'll include a few questions to help you think about a particular aspect of the new creation
- A prayer: a suggestion for how you could pray in response to what you’ve thought about and seen in God’s word
- Thinking further if you want: optional ideas to help you keep thinking about the new creation during the day.
As we think about the new creation, sometimes we will encourage you to imagine what it will be like. This is to help us want to be in the new creation. At times we may not be accurate in what we think of. Don’t worry! It’s better to begin imagining what the new creation will be like, and then allow the Bible to correct our understanding, instead of not thinking about the new creation at all.
Some days develop on or refer back to previous days, so work through them in order, even if you miss a day or two. Don’t feel bad if you don’t do one each day, work through them at a pace that suits you.
We have prepared two weeks of meditations. Some of us may not want to do two weeks. Why not try them out for a week, and discuss with someone in your Bible study group how you get on. The second week builds on week one, and each day may take slightly longer. We will look at some similar ideas, but push our thinking further, or consider new angles.
Bible passage: Revelation 21:1–5 (ESVUK)
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I 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 the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.”
Thinking about the new creation and prayer
Revelation 21 tells us that in the new creation, there will be no more tears, death, mourning, crying or pain. God will remove all these things forever. The implications of this are huge!
- What do you find most exciting about this picture of the new creation?
- Think: write a list of 20 examples of tears, death, mourning, crying or pain. It could be from personal experience, or what you’ve witnessed. It could be diseases, disasters, emotions, feelings. It could be the things you are finding most frustrating about the current lockdown.
- Pray: go through your list and give thanks to God that each thing you have listed will be gone in his new creation.
Look out your window and begin to picture what the world pictured in Revelation 21 might look like. Imagine this world with all the things you listed gone forever. What might it feel like, what would it be like to live there? The opening of today’s music video has a similar idea—check it out to help you get started.
To keep thinking further, you could:
- Share your list on WhatsApp with someone else in your Bible study group. How many things did you list that were the same? See how many things will be gone in the new creation.
- Expand your list, getting more specific. For instance, don’t just put “cancer”, put lung cancer, breast cancer etc. Think about things related to your list that also won’t be there. For example, without disease we won’t need doctors or health care. Consider how different the new creation will be!