Foreview of God’s New Order of Things
No need to dream about the future. Read what God’s Word says about it.
WHAT do you foresee as the future of man and the earth for the next thousand years or so? Some foresee oblivion; others have pipe dreams of a streamlined, scientific, pushbutton system of things with man as the master of all that surrounds him. Others say they could not care less! But all of this is wrong thinking. Tomorrow’s system of things will be one in which man’s fondest desires and greatest needs will Read what God’s be amply satisfied, but God, not man, will be its absolute master.
Yes, a new order, a perfect paradise, is already in the making. Its government is now in operation; a nucleus of its future inhabitants is being gathered and trained; instructions for the changeover to a new way of life are now being applied; and the full-scale operation is due to begin in the near future. The Christian apostle John helps us to determine this because he was given an inspired revelation of the events of this twentieth century that would lead up to the exit of the old order and the entry of the new. In his vision he saw that “the earth and the heaven fled away” from before God and there was no longer any place found for present wickedness. This was due to happen at the beginning of a 1,000-year period in which God would rule the earth in righteousness, and Bible prophecy shows that this time is fast approaching. John tells us that he “saw a new heaven and a new earth” where God “will wipe out every tear from [the people’s] eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be any more.”—Rev. 20:4, 11; 21:1, 4.
But do not think of this as just another version of Hilton’s Shangri-la, or Sir Thomas More’s Utopia. The apostle John had reason to believe, yes, to be absolutely convinced, that what he saw in Word says about it. this revelation would become a reality. Not so with authors Hilton and More. Just think of the name “Utopia.” It is a combination of two Greek words meaning “not” and “a place.” Put them together, and what do you have? No place! The name means “Nowhere”! But God’s new order is not like that. It is very definitely somewhere, with its government in the “new heavens” administering blessings to men of the “new earth.” That is why God sealed John’s vision with his word of guarantee, saying: “Write, because these words are faithful and true.”—Rev. 21:5.
Did you say that only a miracle could bring this about? You are right! But the Creator of the new order is a God of miracles. Assuring us of his ability, he states: “Here I am, Jehovah, the God of all flesh. For me is there any matter at all too wonderful?” In connection with the miraculous birth of Jesus, God’s angel said to Mary, “With God no declaration will be an impossibility.” (Jer. 32:27; Luke 1:37) These statements stand proved by the miracles that were performed by Jesus, God’s own Son, for many of the things that he did while on earth were foregleams of the earthwide miracles that will take place in the new order.
PREVIEWS OF THINGS TO COME
First, it would be good to understand why it was that Jesus, in particular, could perform miracles of the nature that he did. You see, the present unhappy condition of man springs basically from just one thing—he is a sinner. There was a time when Adam was not a sinner and then his environment was perfect. If it had been possible at that time for someone to have informed Adam that the earth would later be filled with wickedness and with unhappy, sick and degenerate people, Adam would have found this hard to believe; he would not have known what the person was talking about. But since we today have been conceived and born in sin and live a sinful life, it may be hard for us to believe that there once was, and that there will be again, a perfect system of things such as Adam once enjoyed. But since the change from good to bad was brought about by sin, then a change from bad to good is made possible only through the removal of sin. It is only through the sacrificial death of Jesus, the perfect man, that this can be effected. Knowing this, he began a sacrificial course at the time of his baptism at Jordan. This would not be finished until the time of his death on the torture stake, but in the meantime God’s power enabled him to perform miracles which demonstrated the everlasting benefits to come to men when the merits of his human sacrifice would be extended to them directly. It was for this reason that on performing many of his miracles Jesus could say to persons cured: “Your sins are forgiven.”—Matt. 9:2.
Of the thirty-six or more individual miracles of Jesus narrated in the four Gospels, at least half of them were acts of physical healing. When he was at home in Capernaum crowds surrounded the house where he lived. In an effort to reach him, four men carrying a paralytic removed a portion of the flat roof to let the helpless invalid down to where Jesus was. Perhaps he had suffered considerable brain damage. Could Jesus do anything for him? First he tells him that his sins are forgiven, and then: “Get up, pick up your cot, and go to your home.” The man obeyed instantly.—Mark 2:1-12.
Have you ever seen a leper? There were many of them in Jesus’ day and there are many now. But there will be none in God’s new order, at least not for long! Listen to Luke’s account: “On a further occasion while he was in one of the cities, look! a man full of leprosy! When he caught sight of Jesus he fell upon his face and begged him, saying: ‘Lord, if you just want to, you can make me clean.’” Jesus wanted to. He reached out to touch him, saying: “Be made clean.” Immediately the disease vanished. Can you see earth’s new Ruler multiplying this a thousandfold, a millionfold if necessary, to wipe out leprosy and any similar plagues?—Luke 5:12-14; Heb. 4:15.
Jesus’ power over blindness was shown a number of times, but blind Bartimaeus was an outstanding example, for he did not let obstacles prevent his being healed. He shouted out his faith in Jesus’ healing power and “at this many began sternly telling him to be silent; but he kept shouting that much more.” His faith was rewarded. Jesus called him and restored his sight to him. This will also be the lot of the physically blind today who express strong faith like that of Bartimaeus and who work for entry into God’s new order.—Mark 10:46-52.
FREEDOM FROM DEMONS, DEATH AND WANT
In this world of which Satan is the invisible ruler, mental illness abounds. Some cases of this are outright obsession by demons who are making a concerted attack on the minds of men today. But at the very outset of God’s new order one of the first things that Christ Jesus will do is to render Satan and his demons impotent. This is stated prophetically for us in the vision of John of which we were speaking. Satan and his legions of demons will be abyssed, “that he might not mislead the nations any more.” (Rev. 20:1-3) Why, even when Jesus was on earth he performed miracles showing his power over demon forces. At Mark 5:1-20 we find the record concerning a man possessed by, not one, but many demons. Jesus cast them out of the man.
Of all of man’s enemies, death is the most relentless. Man’s fondest dreams and achievements collapse in the face of death. But even many of those who are already dead will return to life in God’s new system of things. Jesus said, “This is the will of him that sent me, that I should lose nothing out of all that he has given me but that I should resurrect it at the last day.” Knowing that actions speak louder than words, Jesus drove his point home with convincing demonstrations. Most thrilling of all was his resurrection of his friend Lazarus. A decaying corpse of four days, a body far beyond man’s help, now returning to the dust, lived again by a resurrection when Jesus cried out: “Lazarus, come on out!” What joy this brings to our hearts as we foresee, in God’s new system of things, our dead ones likewise responding to that same commanding call!—John 6:39; 11:1-44.
Jehovah promises an abundant, happy life in his new order. That this will present no problem was demonstrated in Jesus’ ability to make provisions when the need arose. His first miracle, performed at the marriage feast in Cana, provided about 100-150 gallons of the finest wine! There is no fear that there will be food shortages when one reads of how Jesus fed five thousand men besides women and children. With what? Nothing but five loaves and two fishes. This miracle must have made a deep impression on the minds of his disciples, for it is the only one recorded by all of the Gospel writers.—Matt. 14:14-22; John 6:1-13.
Perhaps you wonder how it will be possible for all of this to be accomplished on an earthwide scale. Will Jesus have to return to our planet and spend many years going from one place to another to heal wounds and sicknesses? No, it is not necessary for Jesus to be personally present for his healing work to take place. Jesus healed an army officer’s servant although he had never laid eyes on him. He repeated this with a Phoenician woman’s daughter and the son of a nobleman in Capernaum. (Matt. 8:5-13; 15:22-28; John 4:46-54) Now on his heavenly throne, ‘all authority has been given him in heaven and on the earth.’ (Matt. 28:18) From the heavenly heights Jesus and the angels at his disposal have access to all parts of the universe. From there he is able to dispense to faithful men around the globe the benefits of his ransom sacrifice. There will be a gradual progress of all faithful humans toward perfection, miraculously made possible, because people will stop dying. Health will make constant improvement. Gone will be wars, racial problems and oppression of every kind. God’s new order will be a perpetual miracle from its beginning.