Thursday, September 10, 2009

The Gospel of New Creation

If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. (2 Corinthians 5:17)
There is a new creation coming. It is not a another creation or a different creation but a renewal of creation. God never gave up on the first as a failed creation. Adam rebelled in the Garden of Eden and by doing so, as God’s representative king on the earth, plunged all creation under a curse. But God never set it aside. Instead, He made a way to redeem it.

This plan reached its climax in Jesus Christ, God and Man joined together in one person, who is called the Last Adam (1 Corinthians 15:45). At the cross, He defeated the powers of darkness, the devil and all his works (Hebrews 2:14; 1 John 3:8), then was raised by God the Father as the “firstborn from the dead” (Colossians 1:18). It was through the Son of God that the first creation came into existence; it is through the Son also that the renewal of all creation has now begun.

This new creation is not yet complete. We live in between the time of the new beginning and the final fulfillment. Indeed, even creation itself longs for this completion:
For the earnest expectation of the creation eagerly waits for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it in hope; because the creation itself also will be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now. (Romans 8:19-22)
The bodily resurrection of Jesus the Messiah from the dead is the guarantee that all creation shall be renewed. For all authority in heaven and earth has been given to Him (Matthew 28:18), and He rules and reigns as Lord of all, not as a divine but disembodied spirit but as the eternal God/Man who is forever embodied in the stuff of creation. When He comes again, the heavens and the earth will be made new (Revelation 21:1) and “we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is” (1 John 3:2).

The renewal of creation has already begun in Jesus the Messiah, and those who are in Him, who belong to Him by faith in Him, are already part of it. It is as Paul said, “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”