Unfolding Drama of Redemption
“A New Heaven and a New Earth” Revelation 21:1-27

Date:October 3, 2021
Author: Wayne J. Edwards

Introduction:

 

While it appears to us that everything about our way of life is falling apart, as far as God’s unfolding drama of redemption, everything is falling into place, just as God ordained it to be at the end of this age. Therefore, our hope is not for the return of our American way of life, but rather in the soon return of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ!

This sermon will conclude our series on God’s Unfolding Drama of Redemption. This week, our focus will be upon our final state: “A New Heaven and a New Earth”

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Old Testament – Isaiah 65:17-19 – New Testament – Revelation 21:1-6, 22-27

God’s Unfolding Drama of Redemption
“A New Heaven and a New Earth”
Revelation 21:1-27

Wayne J. Edwards, Pastor

   In Ephesians 1:10-12, the Apostle Paul said God’s ultimate goal in everything He has done since creation, and has planned for the future is “to gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth- in Him.”

  • Gods goal will not be achieved until we begin our eternal life with Him in the new heaven and the new earth.
  • The chronology of events leading up to that day include:
    • The rapture of the Church – 1 Thessalonians 4:15-17
    • The Great Tribulation on earth – Matthew 24:21
    • The Judgment Seat of Christ in Heaven – 2 Corinthians 5:9-11
    • The Marriage of the Lamb – Revelation 19:7-9
    • The Marriage Supper of the Lamb – Revelation 19:9
    • The Millennial Reign of Christ – Revelation 20:1-6
    • The Arrival of the New Heaven and New Earth – Revelation 21:1-27

“And the Lord will be king over all the earth. On that day the Lord will be one and his name one.”
Zechariah 14:9

Jewish tradition says two events will signal the second coming of the Messiah:

  • There will be a small return of the Jews to Israel to rebuild the cities and to restore the land.
    • Ezekiel 36:8 – “My people Israel are about to come.”
    • That began to happen on May 14, 1948
  • When life becomes sustainable, the majority of the Jews will return to Israel to live and to rebuild the City of Jerusalem.
    • Psalm 147:2 – “The Lord gathers the outcast of Israel.”
    • Isaiah 52:9 – “God has comforted His people. He has redeemed Jerusalem.”
  • Jerusalem has been, is today, and forever shall be the City of God.
    • Psalm 132:13 – “The Lord has CHOSEN Zion: He has desired if for His habitation.”
  • When Jesus reveals Himself to the Jews as the Messiah; the Savior sent from God, He will also proclaim Himself as the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords, and He will establish His earthly kingdom in the capital City of Jerusalem.
    • Zechariah 14:4-9 – “His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, which faces Jerusalem…and in that day, the Lord shall be King over all the earth. In that day, it shall be, the Lord is one, and His name one.”
    • Jesus will inaugurate His Kingdom where:
    • The curse of sin is removed from the earth –
    • The righteousness of Christ rules the earth –
    • The environment is perfected physically and spiritually – disease and despair are removed –
    • There is a time of peace, joy, and comfort. At least for a time, only believers will enter the Millennial Kingdom, and Jesus Christ will rule the world with truth and grace.
  • There will be two groups of people on earth during the Millennium.
    • The Church – the Bride of Christ – believers will exist in our new glorified bodies.
    • Humans – believers who survived the Great Tribulation will continue to exist in their earthly bodies, and continue to reproduce after their kind.
  • Unfortunately, not all those born during the Millennium will express their faith in Jesus Christ, and eventually, they will be cast into the lake of fire, along with the Antichrist, all demons, the False Prophet, and Satan himself.
  • This is the “second death” from which there is no escape.

Chapter 21 begins the final section of the Book of Revelation:

  • Jesus is Lord of the seven churches – Revelation 1:1-3:22
  • Jesus is the Lion over all earthly nations – Revelation 4:1-20:15
  • Jesus is the Lamb of God among those who believed in Him – Revelation 21:1-22:1

What did John mean by a New Heaven and New Earth?

  • Some believe John meant that this present universe will be purged and regenerated.
  • In Isaiah 65:17-19, God said, “Behold I create a new heaven and a new earth; the former shall not be remembered or come to mind.”
  • The Hebrew meaning of the word “create” means – ex Nihilo, or “out of nothing.”
  • This universe is temporary; it is winding down, breaking down, and during the tribulation, it will be falling down.
  • In 2 Peter 3:12-13, the Apostle said we should look for a “new heaven and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.”
  • In Revelation 21, John said this new creation will have:
    • A new capital city – vs 2 – New Jerusalem –
    • A new level of communion with God – vs 3-4 – He will dwell with us –
    • A new constitution – vs 5-8 – God will give the water of life to those who thirst for Him, but he will forbid the unbelievers to enter into His new kingdom.
  • John described our heavenly home as a “cube” – 1500 miles long, 1500 miles wide, and 1500 miles high.
    • There is no impurity whatsoever –
    • There is no darkness whatsoever –
    • There is no temple – for the city is a sanctuary –
    • Those who live there will eat from the tree of life –
    • Those who live there will drink of the water of life
    • Those who live there have their names in the Book of life –
  • The Hebrew name of this heavenly home is “Jehovah Shammah,” which means God is, for He will be there, just as He was in the Garden of Eden, and we shall see Him face to face, and commune with Him as friend to friend.

“Behold the tabernacle of God is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people… and He will wipe every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will be no mourning, or crying, or pain.”
Revelation 21:3-4

What was John’s final warning to his readers?

  • In Revelation 22:7, Jesus said, – “Behold, I come quickly.”
  • In Revelation 22:12, Jesus said, “Behold I come quickly, and My reward is to give every man according as his work shall be.”
  • In Revelation 22:14, Jesus said, “Blessed are they that do His commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter through the gate into the city.”
  • This was the Lord’s last beatitude, but it was not translated accurately from the original Greek text.
  • The Apostle John quoted Jesus as saying: “Blessed are they that wash their robes that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter through the gates into the city.”
  • A Jewish Scribe felt no one could be saved simply by trusting in Jesus Christ as their Savior, i.e., His death for their sins, so he changed the words to reflect his own faith of salvation by works.
  • However, there is only one way to be saved, and that is to have your sins forgiven (washed) through the shed blood of Jesus Christ.
    • Romans 10:9-11: “If you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the Scripture says, whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.”
    • Many Christians have allowed the temporal things of this world to capture their attention away from their eternal home in heaven, and sadly, the majority of churches have been complicit in that decision.
  • However, in Philippians 3:20, the Apostle Paul said, once we are born again, our “citizenship” is in heaven.
    • Colossians 3:1-3: “If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory.”

Now look at Revelation 22:20 – “Surely I come quickly, and John said, even so, come Lord Jesus.”

  • Have YOU made your reservation for your eternal home in heaven?
  • Date your confessed Jesus Christ as your Savior: ___________________________________________________
  • Where you made your public confession of faith: ____________________________________________________
  • Witnesses to your confession and/or baptism? ______________________________________________________   ___________________________________________________________________________________________

THE CONVERGENCE OF CURRENT EVENTS
THAT WILL LEAD TO THE NEW WORLD ORDER


“Things are not falling apart – they are falling into place.”

  • The Decline of America – A new world is dawning, but the United States will no longer lead it. President Biden’s Afghanistan debacle was evidence of America’s surrender to the New World Order.
  • The Rush to Global Government – Klaus Schwab of The World Economic Forum said, “The pandemic represented a window to reimagine, and reset our world.” His description of a Global Reset mirrors the Bible’s description of the events during the tribulation.
  • Government Overreach – forcing people to trust in the government to protect them from the Covid virus was to, in effect, condition the masses to put their trust in the Antichrist to bring about world peace.
  • Creation Groans as Birth Pangs Intensify – extreme weather-related events have increased in their frequency and intensity over the last 20 years. However, today’s violent storms are only the precursors to the severe, cataclysmic events described in the first phase of the tribulation.
  • Lawlessness – the Rise of the Spirit of the Antichrist – from the Supreme Court to the classroom, society is plagued with a lack of respect for law and order – good is now evil, and evil is now good.
  • The Rise of Romans 1 Mentality – to have a reprobate mind is to think of oneself as being wise when, in fact, they are fools because they deny the existence of God. Such men and women are now in charge of our government and the media.
  • Technology and Artificial Intelligence – the “Mark of the Beast” technology will monitor and eventually control the actions and attitudes of every person on earth. Such technology now exists.
  • Wolves Among the Flock – “Woke” pastors no longer preach the gospel of salvation but rather the need to humanly resolve the sins of social injustice and racial reconciliation. Apostasy is to turn away from the truth and to embrace the lie.
  • Hatred of Christians, Conservatives, and Jews – Those who hold to biblical values or oppose government mandates are now domestic terrorists. TV host, Joy Reid said, “Christian Evangelicals are America’s Taliban.”
  • Mideast Instability – America’s withdrawal from Afghanistan could lead to the Gog-Magog War described in Ezekiel 38-39, as Israel’s enemies now know America will no longer come to her defense.

Our hope is not for the return of our American way of life!
Our hope is in the soon return of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ!