"For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth; And the former shall not be remembered or come to mind." (Isaiah 65:17)
Jesus reveals clearly in Revelation that He will be returning soon. That day is coming. This world will end. This earth and these heavens above will pass away. The Lord is going to make new heavens and a new earth. There won't be any sin. The things that make us sad and hurt us now will not even be remembered. So here's the question: Do the new heavens and a new earth include you?
The answer to that question doesn't come when it happens. We don't have to wait until Judgment Day to figure out whether we're in or out. The question has already been answered on Calvary on the day that the Son of God died for sinners on the cross. On that day the sin that ties you to this heaven and earth was destroyed. On that day, the new heavens and earth became yours.
The answer was also given the day you were baptized. By water and the word, united with Jesus, you were rescued from the old world, the devil's kingdom, which is passing away and you were made a citizen of the new heaven and earth. This brings salvation for all who trust in Jesus Christ for there's a daily assurance of God's faithfulness to His promises and inclusion in this beautiful gift of heaven.
Even though our faith requires constant effort to stand against all the world, the devil and your own sinful human nature, the gospel assures you of your deliverance from sin and death and promises you life as you trust in the death and resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ to fulfill the laws demands which you cannot do on your own. This is because of God's grace in Jesus Christ. God keeps us anchored in the joy of the spirit of Christ reigning in us as the reason our hope is secure. "20. I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. 21. I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!" (Galatians 2:20-21)
If you ever doubt whether this beautiful future is yours, then listen to your Pastor absolve you of your sins and preach the gospel to you. That absolution and that preaching are God's promise that for Jesus sake, He won't let you pass away with this heaven and earth, but has prepared a place for you in the world to come.
Don't doubt it; this heaven and earth will pass away. They will perish! But there is a new heaven and earth waiting for you, because Christ makes all things new. He began that the very day He came into this world and did the work of being your Savior. In His death and resurrection, Jesus Christ prepared a place for you in the heavens (John 14:1-6).
O Jesus Christ, do not delay, but hasten our salvation; We often tremble on the way in fear and tribulation. O hear and grant our fervent plea: Come, mighty judge, and set us free from death and ev'ry evil. (Lutheran Service Book 508:7)
Rich blessings as you gather with congregation, family, neighbors and friends during this Thanksgiving season, even as we prepare for Advent, when we celebrate the return of our Lord Jesus Christ, just as He promised and delivered through the Babe in the Manger who is King of Kings and Lord of Lords.