Good morning. This is a really special moment for me. I’ve been in St. Andrew’s for the past 10+ years and I’ve had the privilege of sharing God’s word here. I’ve made many friends, both students as well as teachers. And I will leave with many fond memories. As I was praying about what to share with you in this my last assembly devotion, I decided to share from the passage that I chose for my wedding service. [Anyone of you getting married today? =) ]
My pastor who preached my wedding service message began by saying, it was a rather strange passage that I chose because he probably hadn’t preached a wedding message from the book of Revelation before. But it’s going to make sense, alright?
1 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. 2 And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 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. 4 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.” 5 And 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.”
I believe the best thing, the most important thing, the most precious thing I can leave with you today, is the gospel… the good news of Jesus Christ. And it is summed up in verse 5 of the passage I just read, where Jesus says, “Behold, I am making all things new.” The reason why I chose this for my wedding is because my wife and I saw this play out in our relationship.
You have heard me share this in chapel before. My wife and I dated in two phases: we dated for 3 years, then we broke up for about 2-3 years. After that we got back together, started dating again and finally got married. When we broke up, never in our wildest imaginations did we think we would get back together again. We simply did not want to, not to each other. But God was at work, moulding our character, smoothening out the rough edges. He really made all things new for us and brought us back together again.
And what God did for us in our relationship, He is going to do on a cosmic scale in the entire universe. All the consequences of sin: wars, violence, anger, hatred, injustice… all suffering, sickness, sorrow… all of that one day, will be done away with… when God ushers in the new heavens and the new earth.
But you know what’s the most glorious thing about heaven? v. 3 “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.”
Just like it was in the Garden of Eden, where God dwelt physically with Adam and Eve, so it will be in heaven when God will dwell with His people. So the question to ask is, “Are you God’s people? Is He your God?” The Bible says the only way to become God’s people is to trust in Jesus, who died for our sins and rose from the dead for our salvation. Therefore, more important than any question you will ever answer in your examinations is this question, “Are you God’s people? Do you trust in Jesus?” Because if you do, He will make all things new… for you. [Let’s pray]