God’s work of salvation is greater than just saving the souls of believers. At the end of time, God will restore all things, heaven and earth, humans and animals, and make all things new. Instead of taking us out of a condemned world, God will restore creation, remove all sin and evil, and let goodness, love and righteousness reign instead. When the believer dies, they come to Jesus, but with Jesus’ return to earth, all believers will be resurrected, given a new body and be part of the new creation as God comes down to us humans and lives with us in his city of Jerusalem. Already at Jesus’ first coming to earth, the kingdom of God has begun to spread throughout the world, and at his second coming, Jesus will put all his enemies under his feet, everyone will confess that Jesus is Lord, God’s will will prevail on earth as it does in heaven, and an angel will proclaim: “The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he shall reign forever and ever.” (Re 11:15)
“19For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. 20For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope 21that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. 22For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now.” (Ro 8:19–22)
“10But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed. 11Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness, 12waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be set on fire and dissolved, and the heavenly bodies will melt as they burn! 13But according to his promise we are waiting for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.” (2 Pe 3:10–13)
“17“For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth, and the former things shall not be remembered or come into mind.” (Is 65:17)
“1Then 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. 2And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3And 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. 4He 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.” 5And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”” (Re 21:1–5)
“27But nothing unclean will ever enter it, nor anyone who does what is detestable or false, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s book of life.” (Re 21:27)
“6The wolf shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the young goat, and the calf and the lion and the fattened calf together; and a little child shall lead them. 7The cow and the bear shall graze; their young shall lie down together; and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. 8The nursing child shall play over the hole of the cobra, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the adder’s den. 9They shall not hurt or destroy in all my holy mountain; for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea.” (Is 11:6–9)
- How do you imagine “heaven”?
- Do you have any personal experience that the kingdom of Heaven / kingdom of God has already begun to come to earth?
- Will the world be destroyed or renewed?
- What should we Christians do in the time between Jesus’ first and second coming?
- Should we take better care of creation?
Additional Bible Verses
Isa 66:22, Hos 2:18, Ezek 48:35, Acts 3:21, Phil 1:23, 1 Cor 15:25, Rev 11:15, Matt 6:10