Thursday, July 31, 2008

Oldness and newness

I woke up this morning remembering Steve Allen dismissing the saying that there is nothing new under the sun. Of course there is. We didn't have the internet even when I read his book 25 years ago. We didn't use to have CDs.

But the writer understood that. He too saw new things, in that sense. But indeed there is nothing new under the sun. Whatever it is, in its essence we really have seen it all before, and even at age 57 it starts to become wearisome.

In the Revelation Jesus says, "Behold, I make all things new." And "behold" implies that this is something you can gaze at, not a statement you're just supposed to assent to. Paul told us too about walking in newness of life.

Now as it happens, I had spoken to the Lord a couple of days ago about just this thing. I had told him how I just could not imagine that eternity could in any way be restful and not eventually tiresome to the point of torment. I didn't exactly disbelieve God's words on this; I just couldn't imagine the possibility.

Now I see these promises of renewal in Scripture as a lot more essential and significant than I've ever imagined. People need newness like we need air. If we don't get the real deal from God, who makes all things new, we'll get it somehow from under the sun, where it really doesn't exist, and that drives us truly bonkers. Here in this unmet need is the frantic search for new girls or new men, new thrills, new experiences, new toys - and truly, the end of the way is death.

I actually have lots of experience of God making all things new. I'll see something brand new in stuff I've read 20 times in the Bible before, and which had grown boring and familiar, just as I'm recounting here. The same thing happens in everything else, not just what we read (or don't) in the Bible. Where God shows up somehow in revelation, the same old thing is brand new, and really that happens no other way.


Blogger L said...

I've just come across your blog and wanted to say "Thanks", I needed that! I'm so glad that you've taken the time.

9/16/2008 9:39 AM  

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