The wonderful future
“He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying, nor pain. All of that has gone forever.”
(Revelation 21:4 (TLB).
Ironically for a scripture that talks about an end to crying, this verse always brings a tear to my eye. However, it’s not out of sadness, but because it’s so wonderful to contemplate a future of eternal happiness with God, free from all the bad things of this life.
I remember as a teenager my pastor stating that this was his favourite verse in the Bible, and I remember being at church festivals where the choir would often sing a song based on this section of Revelation 21, so it became a text that I became familiar with and have derived great hope from over many years.
For all of us, we can deal with our present difficulties knowing a time is coming when it will all be over. When we see evil, injustice, inequality and suffering all around us, we know this is only a by-product of our present, temporary age. We live in the sure and certain hope of a better time to come. This makes it so much easier to cope with anything we’re going through. Jesus described living for him as a light burden compared to the heavy weight of trying to live a life independent of him (Matthew 11:30), and I think this reality is true partially because of the great hope we have for the future. In fact, hope is mentioned many times in the Bible (180 times in the NIV).
When my grandmother died, my mother (her daughter) asked me to conduct the funeral, and asked that during it I read this section from Revelation 21. For my mother, it was important to be reminded in her time of grieving that a better time is coming, and all the suffering we go through will be over. This future will be so wonderful the biblical writers could only scratch the surface at describing it, many speaking in metaphorical terms to try to convey how incredible it will be. While I love my present life and am extremely grateful to God for the many wonderful blessings I have, I’m looking forward so much to this time in the future. The very definition of God is love (1 John 4:8), and we get to be with him forever when all evil and suffering have gone. We’ll be in a new age characterised by love and everything good. That’s the future we’re all promised, and there’s nothing we must do to be a part of this as Jesus has already made the way possible. That’s the good news that Christians celebrate.
So, whatever you might be going through, take time to meditate on these verses and thank God for the wonderful future we have to look forward to.
Father, thank you that a better time is coming, and that all the suffering we see around us will be gone when the new order of things is here. We praise you, worship you and thank you. We place our hope in you, knowing that this amazing future is certain, all made possible through Jesus. In his name we pray, Amen.
Study by Anthony Dady
About the writer:
Anthony Dady is a minister in Grace Communion International and is the Regional Pastor for Wales, the Midlands, and Northern England.
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