By Sally Lombardo
“’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.’ Also he said, ‘Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.’ And he said to me, ‘It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give from the spring of the water of life without payment.’” (Revelation 21:4–6)
Theologian N. T. Wright authored a book entitled Surprised by Hope, which is one of my favorite reads. In the book, Wright teaches about the history and theology of the resurrection, then shows how our hope for the resurrection fuels our passion for worship, evangelism, and missions. Through Jesus, we get more than a fresh start; we are made completely new. Jesus alone can take our souls from death to life and start things over again, his way. The resurrection changes everything. Jesus has the power to make all things new because he is the Alpha and Omega (Revelation 21:6). We have heard this name for Jesus before, but what does it mean?
Alpha and omega are the first and the last letters of the Greek alphabet. Jesus is the start and the finish line; he bookends our lives. In Psalm 139, David writes, “You hem me in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high; I cannot attain it” (Psalm 139:5–6). Sometimes when I am afraid, I remember this psalm and know that I am protected in Christ’s shielding love. I remind myself that God is trustworthy. We can look forward with the hope of Christ, knowing that he is the resurrection and life (John 11:25). We remember that all things can be made new, from relationships to careers to physical pain. God is not about self-betterment the way the world exhibits, but he is about letting go of things that bring us death or pain and moving to a new kind of life, a better one.
Sometimes new life looks like healing from old emotional wounds; sometimes it looks like a new direction and a newfound purpose. God provides these things all the time, as we abide with him (John 15:4). Christianity does not stress how to become a better, more successful person with more friends and fame, but it teaches us how to follow Jesus and know him better. We can trust the words of Scripture to bring us joy in the Father’s love and care for us. We can trust that God goes before us and behind us, making renewed life possible.
Reflection: How and when have you trusted God to bring you new life? We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
Why is trust so difficult? Unlike all the broken promises of this world, God’s redeeming promises are absolute, trustworthy, and true. The covenants of God afford us with abundant reasons to trust God with his plan for our lives. Trusting God: Redeeming Promises of the Word small group Bible study explores the six major redeeming promises of God found in his Word. Learn more about God’s commitment to his people, the nature of a covenant, and how you can find your security in being a child of God’s redeeming promises. Learn more about God’s promises today.
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