Read: Isaiah 65:17-25
For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth, and the former things shall not be remembered. (v. 17)
Doesn’t it feel good to put up a brand-new calendar at the first of the year? While January 1st may be an arbitrary starting point, it’s encouraging to think of a fresh beginning—a new year full of possibility and promise. This is especially true when the previous year was a difficult one; we look for better things in the new year.
The book of Isaiah was written to warn God’s people, who had rejected him in order to worship false gods. Isaiah spoke of judgment and suffering; there wouldn’t be just one terrible year but many years of future captivity. As the book concludes, however, God promises new and better things for his people—a future time of peace and blessing. All things will be made new—new heavens and a new earth. Jerusalem will be a place of joy! Even the natural world will be at peace: “The wolf and the lamb shall graze together, the lion shall eat straw like the ox” (v. 25). The fullness of this kingdom is still to come, but God is beginning this work with us! It all starts by making his people new.
In the days ahead we will meditate on how God is accomplishing this renewal in believers. We will look at how God has made us new, how he is making us new, and how he will make us and all things new. —Laura N. Sweet
As you pray, ask for God’s guidance and blessing in the new year ahead.