Memory Verse: “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God” (Revelation 2:7).
INTRODUCTION: There is coming a time when the earth will be restored to its original beauty and productivity. Apostle Paul in Romans 8:19-23 pictures the whole creation waiting and longing for that day. When Adam sinned he not only brought a curse on himself and mankind, but this curse also included the animals, plants and even the ground itself. Weeds have come up where flowers should grow. Animals now hunt and are hunted with the entailing fear and suﬀering. Even the ground has been exploited by man.
When Jesus returns, not only will the saints be clothed with an incorruptible body, but the whole creation will be restored to its original state, which God Himself described as being “very good.” In God’s Kingdom, there will be no sorrow, pain, or death. Even the animals will live together in peace.
One of the greatest blessings is eternal life. Much of the pressure in this life is a result of the brevity of life itself. There are so many things that we need to accomplish, along with the additional things that we wish to accomplish, that we seldom have time to relax. In the kingdom, we will still build houses, plant vineyards, etc., but time will not be a factor: If you knew that you would live a thousand years in this life you would no doubt take more time to relax and enjoy life. Just think how good it will feel to know that you will live forever.
Some may feel guilty about anticipating and emphasizing the reward for righteous living, but the Bible records that Moses considered the reward when he made his decision to serve God. Peter desired to know what reward he and the disciples would receive for following Jesus. Jesus seemed to accept this as a legitimate question and described the reward in store for the disciples. Why would the Lord describe the future kingdom so vividly if He didn’t want us to anticipate it?
Everybody enjoys a reward. We each have our dream of what it would take to make us completely happy. Children’s fairy tales always end with “and they lived happily ever after.” Well, the story of the children of God will end with “and they lived happily ever after,” but it won’t be a fairy tale‐it will be for real!!
- What did Peter say would happen when Jesus returns? Acts 3:20-21.
- Does this restitution include more than just our bodies? Isaiah 65:17.
- Who will inherit this earth when it is made new? Psalm 37:9, 18, 29.
- What changes will take place at that time? Revelation 21:4.
- What change will take place in the animals? Isaiah 11:6-9.
- What change will take place in the nations? Micah 4:1-3.
- What are some of the things the Saints will do? Isaiah 65:21-24; Revelation 7:9-12.
- Should we anticipate our reward as Saints? Hebrews 11:24-26; Romans 8:19-23.