A Broken World
Twenty-eight people were killed Tuesday by a terrorist bombing in Kabul. In fact, there have been 82 such terrorist attacks around the world in the last 19 days. This type of evil evades my comprehension. I literally do not understand it. Here in peaceful Tallahassee, Florida my family is shielded from this level of hatred and evil. However, whether I am reminded of it daily or not, we are indeed living in a broken world.
In Genesis chapter two, we see the world as God intended— perfect. God created the heavens and the earth, saw that it was good, and rested from his labor. But this perfect world, created with a divine precision to every detail, would be subjected to futility. It groans to this day to be “set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.” (Romans 8:19-21)
This evil that I can’t comprehend is just the ripple effect of that sin. We are promised that this broken world that has been tormented by sin will one day be made new.
Hope Is No Small Thing
When the world is slipping into despair, Christians are afforded a unique perspective. We are told not to worry about tomorrow (Matthew 6:34), that we shouldn’t worry about anything (Philippians 4:6). We are told to not worry about what we will eat or drink (Matthew 6:25), and that we should cast our cares onto the Lord (Psalms 55:22).
This unique perspective can be summed up into a single word— Hope.
One of my all time favorite scripture verses is 2 Corinthians 5:17, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” In this one verse, hope is found. It states that in Christ, all our baggage, ugliness, burdens, anger, and selfishness (our old self) have passed away and we are a new creation. Imagine that. In Christ, we become “new”.
When something is new it can’t be made un-new again. As an example, it’s impossible to take the ingredients for a soup, and after cooking them in a pot for a few hours, attempt to return them to their original form. It’s a new creation.
This is the type of hope we have in Christ. When we are found in him our lives are transformed and we are made new. The worries of this world, though real and most certainly can impact our daily lives, do not define us.
Making Things New
Then 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. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And 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. He 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."
And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.”
God’s final act of redeeming this broken world is to “unite all things in Him.” (Ephesians 1:10) Death will no longer reign on earth and we will once again have communion with the living God. Those who mourn will rejoice. Those who cry will be overjoyed. Those who feel pain will find comfort. All things will be made new.
Our salvation is found in Jesus and God himself is declaring that one day he will end all mourning, crying, and pain. He will wipe away every tear; how can we keep silent? How can we hold back this incredible message from people who are indeed crying, weeping, and are subjected to unimaginable cruelties? Staying silent would be akin to keeping the cure for cancer locked away in vault while real people needlessly suffered and died.
But real people are suffering and they are dying. We as Christians have this truth to share; there is a God who loves them and desires to make them a new creation.
There is hope.
- Lyell Walker