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Daily Devotion – All things new

Revelation 21:1-5 (CEV)

The New Heaven and the New Earth

21 I saw a new heaven and a new earth. The first heaven and the first earth had disappeared, and so had the sea. Then I saw New Jerusalem, that holy city, coming down from God in heaven. It was like a bride dressed in her wedding gown and ready to meet her husband.

I heard a loud voice shout from the throne:

God’s home is now with his people. He will live with them, and they will be his own. Yes, God will make his home among his people. He will wipe all tears from their eyes, and there will be no more death, suffering, crying, or pain. These things of the past are gone forever.

Then the one sitting on the throne said:

I am making everything new. Write down what I have said. My words are true and can be trusted.

As we approach the New Year, most of us recognize that some things need to change. We long for some things to be made new. This longing is rooted in our sense that this world is deeply broken, and we were meant for something  different. Today we turn to the next to the last chapter of the Bible, and hear God’s promise to bring about the renewal of all things. Here the emphasis is that life is renewed when people experience the presence of God in a  personal way. Central to this renewal is the elimination of death. The new heaven and new earth are new because they are freed from the threat of death
Psalm suggestion: Psalm 148: In addition to the readings, try reading and reflecting on Psalm 148 each day this week. This psalm expresses how the birth of the  Savior is good news, not just for people, but for the entire creation, even the sea monsters!
 Psalm 148 (CEV)

Come Praise the Lord

148 Shout praises to the Lord!    Shout the Lord’s praises in the highest heavens.All of you angels, and all who serve him above, come and offer praise.Sun and moon, and all of you bright stars, come and offer praise.Highest heavens, and the water above the highest heavens, come and offer praise.Let all things praise the name of the Lord, because they were created at his command.He made them to last forever, and nothing can change what he has done.All creatures on earth, you obey his commands, so come praise the Lord!Sea  monsters and the deep sea, fire and hail, snow and frost, and every stormy wind, come praise the Lord!All mountains and hills, fruit trees and cedars,10 every wild and tame animal, all reptiles and birds,  come praise the Lord!11 Every king and every ruler, all nations on  earth,12 every man and every woman, young people and old, come praise the Lord!13 All creation, come praise the name of the Lord. Praise his name alone. The glory of God is greater than heaven and earth.14 Like a bull with mighty horns, the Lord protects his faithful nation Israel, because they belong to him. Shout praises to the Lord!