Home » Monday: A New Existence    


Monday: A New Existence — 15 Comments

  1. At the moment, just about everyone in Australia is living in a state of flux. Our holiday plans change daily as the news of new COVID hotspots is broadcast. Some people have even made flights interstate to visit family and friends, only to be told on arrival that they must either go back home or pay for 14 days of isolation in a hotel before the can continue. We were planning to pick up our son from Sydney on Thursday so he could spend a few days with us over the holiday season. That changed overnight and we are going down today to pick him up as we may not be able to travel later in the week. It is challenging to keep up with the changes. And I guess that many of you could tell similar stories.

    In such circumstances, we long for heaven where the challenges of disease and the insecurity of political unrest will be a thing of the past. Having said that though, we need to avoid the "pie in the sky bye and bye" notion and remind ourselves that we need to "occupy till he comes". Heaven is not real if we focus on that to the extent that we ignore the challenges we face every day. To be practical, one of our tasks is to provide those who are suffering and oppressed now a little taste of heaven. Heaven is not about my living in a state of permanent retirement. Rather, it is something to be shared with others now. The "streets of gold" for someone today may be the result of me sharing a kind word, of going out of my way to lend a helping hand.

    And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. Rev 21:4 KJV

    That was one of my favourite texts growing up. It took a little longer for me to realise that at the moment, we are God's hands. And our responsibility is to alleviate suffering when we can, giving others an experience of heaven now. And if we take that message on board, maybe we won't fall into the cargo-cultist view of heaven that we often project. Heaven is for sharing!

    • Hi Mr. Maurice, your post bring tears to my eyes. You are absolutely right, we all need to share with others, help the poor, and spread God's word.

      It's like what last week's lesson says, we, as SDAs, can remember what Isaiah 58:13,14 says about the Sabbath, but we seem to forget what Isaiah said a few verses before that in Isaiah 58:7-10, that our fasting is supposed to be about helping the poor, bringing in the homeless to our houses, sharing what we have with others.

      During this season, and maybe even when it not a season, I challenge us all to give; give like you never gave before. And giving can take on other forms than just "giving money", but if you can only do that, do that Now. Give to someone that you never give to before. Let's step out of our usual comfort zone, and give to those that really need help.

      I often see this man with one leg in his wheelchair, begging at the side entrance to my local grocery store. He is not there every day, nor every week for that matter. But I try to give him money as often as I can, because I say to myself, "if not for the grace of God, I could be that man". I know so many people hate to give to beggars, but just as I don't think about what the churches and the conferences are doing with my money, I don't worry about what this man is going to do with the money I give him. I always try to give him the largest amount that I can spare, sometimes all the loose coins and bills I have on me at the time. Only God knows what the man will do, but I gave it to him in good faith, and let God worry about the rest.

      Please give to others today. If you can't give money, give coats and blankets to a homeless person a blanket or a homeless shelter, or give a toy(s) to a youth group home. There's so many ways to give. Give today! God bless you all, and have a Happy Holidays.

  2. You hear stories of couples forming via back-and-forth letter-writing during the world wars. Having never met or even seen each other they fell in love. Today, that seems unlikely to happen in a visually-saturated instant-communication world. However, you do still see emotional reunions of siblings separated at birth meeting for the first time or military returning home at the holidays to children they've never met. Loving and longing without seeing is possible.

    For me, the aching type of pining for a loved one has a strong physical component to it. I deeply miss their smile, their voice, their walk, the whole energy that surrounds their visible presence and the way we are together. That's one reason COVID-19 is extra difficult for so many, the physical distance for an extended period of time.

    What will that be like to actually see Jesus for the first time? We've never experienced Him physically other than in tiny glimpses of His character through each other. The picture of God wiping tears from our eyes is so intimate, so close-up, so personal. Being understood and wanted that completely and deeply would be so emotional I don't know how the tears will ever stop, I think He'll be standing there a long time with me.

    Listen to 1 Peter 1:8: "Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy". In a way it echoes what Jesus said to Thomas after His resurrection, "Blessed are those who have not seen, and have believed." (John 20:29). So the tears will stop because there is a joy too. I think the Bible is saying that through believing joy can begin now - even if it's a tiny drop compared to joy in heaven. All I know of joy now is mixed emotions (Prov 14:13), but then it will be 100% pure! We will be 100% filled with the presence of God.

    • I love how you expressed this! Now I am thinking that for me, if I don't feel that physical longing to be with Jesus and meet Him face to face, perhaps I am not spending enough time with Him now, reading His love letter to me over and over just as those wartime couples did and communicating with Him daily through prayer.

  3. This lesson came at a time we really needed it especially myself that is bereaved. Got a shocking news last night over the demise of one of my boss's at work😥. Have not been myself since last night uptill now cos we are so fond of ourselves and I was planning to visit him in the hospital after a brief illness.😭😭😭

    As an Adventist who have an idea about the state of the dead, it's really hard to say goodbye but there is indeed a better place after here. I pray we all make it there where this sinful world would be forgotten.

  4. But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation. 1 Peter 1:15.
    For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first began with us.... 1 Peter 4:17-19.

    A New Existence
    We like the new existence, a new everything. Many people like Christmas because of gaining new things. A new look to their homes. But is our focus on the reason for the Christmas or we lost site of the reason for the season. So is it with this new existence. Are we living now as their is a reason for the new existence.

    All the present old is pass away. But everyday my prayer, my faith, my believe must be grounded in Christ and Christ alone. Daily drinking the water of life and eating the bread of life he offers. Having a new, daily relationship with him. Heaven begins on earth with those who put their trust in Jesus.
    Today with Jesus, we(Him and me) will be living the life he wants me to live.
    I am crucified with Christ, nevertheless I live, yet not I, but Christ liveth in me.......Gal 2:20-21.

  5. This lesson, and especially these comments (thank you), have given me a new understanding of my purpose in this current life.
    May I live the life God intends for me.

  6. Our Sabbath School lesson starts off today’s lesson with a beautiful promise: “And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away” (Rev: 21:4).
    How beautiful, and comforting are these words; that we will never again have to suffer in pain, or be sad and grieving that our loved ones have died. It oftentimes seems that when you lose a close relative, such as a mother, or father, sister or brother, that there's a little hole in our hearts that can never to closed again; I still feel that way over losing my mother, and she died almost 30 years ago. But God promised us that He will erase all of that sorrow, that He would wipe away all the sad memories, the physical, mental and spiritual pains associated with death; all of that will be forever gone. Wow!! What a blessing this promise will be!! I, we, should look forward to its fulfillment, at Jesus’ Second Coming.

    God will even erase, from our memories, those of our close relatives that made their choice not to accept Jesus and eternal life through him. God knows that we can not spend eternity grieving over relatives that was given the same opportunity to eternal life through Jesus Christ as we were. Revelation 20: 4, 12, says, verse 4, “And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them:” and verse 12, “And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.” This tells us that God will allow us to see the memories and actions of those relatives, and why they are not in Heaven. God wants us to see that He did everything He could to save them; He used every opportunity, good messages, bad messages, sickness, and good health to reach them, but nothing would change them. God wants us to see that His judgment is Fair, and He is a loving God. Also, I hate to say this, but the people that ultimately refuse to choice Jesus and His gift of eternal life, they would not be happy in Heaven, even if God forced them.

    2 Peter 3:13 says, “13 Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.” Along with the promise of no more death, our New Existence will come “New Heavens(plural) and a New Earth”, Heavens being, all three Heavens, our atmosphere, the sky, the outer atmosphere where our moon, stars and sun, and the Heaven, where God and His Son dwells. In fact, the Bible says, in Revelation 21: 2,3 –“2 And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.” Yes, God new Heaven will be Here on Earth with us! I don’t know how He will do it, but it says that God will leave Heaven and His tabernacle will be here with man for eternity.

    When He says “all the former things are passed away”, He meant it! The earth and Heavens will be made over, in true Perfection! Our atmosphere, the sky will look different! We have never even seen a clear atmosphere; the only man and woman that saw the Earth in true perfection was Adam and Eve. I can only imagine what it will be like to finally be able to look at the sun without it blinding us or hurting our eyes. I can only imagine that I go pick an apple off a tree, in the New Earth, and not have to worry about if it is ripe enough or taste sweet enough, it will be perfect every time. 1 Corinthians 2:9, “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, Nor have entered into the heart of man The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.” Even with the knowledge of all of these promises, how sad it is that so many people still fail to believe in Jesus and His Word.

    Be blessed everyone!

    PS. Sorry for the long post; I'm testing on you guys what I will be saying to my Sabbath School class at my church this week.

    • Hi Toni, you have some good fodder for your flock on Sabbath!
      One comment- do you think God will erase from our minds, the memory of those who are not in heaven? Or will He provide us with what we need to know so that we are satisfied with the choice they made? With that knowledge, we will put away our questions and fully trust in God's decisions therefore, there will be no need to return to thoughts of "why" and we move forward with our eternal life? The erasing just reminds me of loss of brain function...like dementia or Alzheimers...

      • LOL. Yep, you're right! Maybe "erase" is a bad choice of words. Also, that's what happens when you add or subtract from God's word, even in small ways. I better stick with "wipe".

        Happy Holidays!

        • We read that He will "wipe" our tears away, not our memories. 🙂
          Our memories are part of who we are. Part of this wiping tears away, I believe, is to get us to understand that those who won't be in heaven would be miserable there. After shedding some tears, we will be satisfied that God did what was best for them.
          I believe some memories will recede so far into the backs of our minds that they are will not come up unless we need to recall them as part of our witness to unfallen beings.

  7. There is a lot to say about this new Existence! As it relates to mankind, the conflict of the ages has always been about who’s influence the mind yields itself to follow, and who’s authority we trust. The mind in the perfect world yielded itself to the influence of the Creator; then it changed, when Adam and Eve’s mind yielded to the lie, becoming the first to experience the effects of separation from the mind of God – being on their own.
    Phil.2:5-11KJV – speaks to the state of mind of Jesus. His is the yielded mind, giving up freely the choices of his own mind to submit/yield them to the Will of God, the Father – “not my will by thine be done”.
    This is how I see our new existence – completed oneness with the Father's mind.

    All the agony of pain and suffering in this world came about because our mind became separated from God’s mind - we have fallen from Grace, thrust into thinking/believing that our existence can only be maintained through our works.
    God sent Christ Jesus, His Son, to give us the Truth and Light to enlighten our minds to find the way home. The Son shows us how to yield our will to the Will of the Father, to die to our self-willed nature and so live in him for a while, but then be translated into the fullness as children of God when He returns.

    I really do not appreciate pictures depicting images from life in the new Existence. They are limited by our fleshly mind’s imaginations and lead astray the thoughts of those who seek this new life. Oneness with the Father in mind and Spirit - this is what should be the focus of our thoughts; these are thoughts of a spiritual state of being and cannot be depicted by using a physical image of the body in time and space.
    Matt.6:25-34KJV – (v.33)“But seek ye first the Kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”
    Matt.22:37-40KJV – (v.37)”Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.

    What does it take to be part of this new existence?
    Jeremiah 29:13KJV; John 6:36,37KJV – Once man understands there is a Creator God who created all things, man should be willing to accept Christ Jesus as His Son and follow Him.
    How do we get there?
    Deut.31:6KJV; Hebr.13:5KJV; Matt.5:18KJV - Faithful trust in the Father’s Word to be Truth and Light, providing for us the Way by which to live our lives.
    How can we be sure we are going to be part of it?
    John10:28-30KJV – Our Salvation is underwritten by the Covenant promise of God the Father believed in by Faith that He is trustworthy to keep His Promises; established by the faithfulness of the mind of Christ Jesus who bridged the gap of separation for us by yielding HIS Will to the Father’s Will and so opened the doors of Heaven/Paradise to be reunited with the Father’s Will and saved/rescued from this body of sin; “and no *man* is able to pluck them/us out of the Father’s hand.”
    What things in our life, if any, could stand in the way of our being part of what God has promised us through Jesus?
    Matt.11:28-30KJV – “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

    This REST is what Christ Jesus offers the faithful who, just as He did when He *rested* His weary soul's mind in the Father’s promises that He will take care of Him. Just as HE demonstrated, we need to follow Him and surrender our self-will based thoughts which have governed our lives until we met Him, and entrust them into the Hands of the Father’s loving care. Our new Life is more than flesh.

  8. I don't believe that God will erase anyone's memories, but will open our minds to a perspective that will allow us to "see" clearly, without sentimental shackles, and whatever/whoever we have lost in this life will be replaced "a hundred fold". We can't understand what we have yet to experience, but we can TRUST the One who tells us, if we trust Him at all(Remember, Jesus will ever bear the scars of His death for us). There will be no more tears, but nowhere are we told there will be no memories, except while dead. We all have memories that have, over time, lost their sting, and once the 1,000 years have passed, the tears will be gone. The new heavens and earth will bring a new existence while still knowing as we are known, but in a state and environment that will outshine all we knew and experienced before.

    Who remembers the cold and dark of winter in the middle of spring and summer?! Multiply this by millions/billions/....(???) of years of perpetual spring/summer. The new endless life will eclipse the old brief life.

    • My Apologies, Robert. Yep, I admit "erase" was a bad choice of words. Also, that's what can happen when you add or subtract from God's word, even in small ways. I better stick with "wipe".

      PS, I'm not ashamed to admit that I was wrong, because it did get a few of you, my brothers and sisters, talking about it. So, I feel good about being wrong.

      Happy Holidays!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

HTML tags allowed in your comment: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>