Autumn in my part of the world is drawing to a close. Another season passes, and oh, I’ll miss its colors. But in the missing, I relish this truth God declares to us: As leaves that flamed yellow and red and orange fall, and seeds are buried under coming winter snow, waiting for spring’s warmth and the new birth that will spring forth from their hidden source, God proclaims truth about a different coming renewal.
Through that yearly march of time, through the seasonal transformation, God paints a glorious picture. Colored leaves broadcast mysteries about His plans for our future. He reveals truth about what is yet to come:
“God promises that the glory of his people will demand a glorious creation to live in. So the fallen creation will obtain the very freedom from futility and evil and pain that the church is given. So when God makes all things new, he makes us new spiritually and morally, he makes us new physically, then he makes the whole creation new so that our environment fits our perfected spirits and bodies.”
“God will one day change our bodies and make them fit for our souls, and then he will change this world itself…
We expect to see this world that is now so full of sin to be turned into a paradise, a garden of God. We expect that the Tabernacle of God will be among men, that he will dwell among them and they shall see his face, and his name shall be on their foreheads. We expect to see the New Jerusalem descend out of Heaven from God…
In this very place where sin has triumphed, we expect that grace will much more abound.”
“God is not some hapless inventor whose creation failed. He has a masterful plan, and he will not surrender us or the earth to the trash heap…
In our resurrection, God may gather the scattered DNA and atoms and molecules of our dead and decayed bodies. In the earth’s resurrection, he will regather all he needs of the scorched and disfigured Earth. As our old bodies will be raised to new bodies, so the old Earth will be raised to become the New Earth…the renewal will be eternal and complete.”
So, when you see red and orange and yellow falling to the ground, remember that one day God will make new from the old. And remember: it will be more glorious than you could ever imagine.
(First quote: John Piper, Behold, I Make All Things New. Second quote: Charles Spurgeon, Creation’s Groans and Saints’ Sighs, Sermon 788. Third quote: Randy Alcorn, 50 Days of Heaven — all quotes excerpted from Randy Alcorn’s Eternal Perspectives, pages 164, 170, 172. Painting: On the Saco, by Albert Bierstadt)