The Berean Expositor
Volume 54 - Page 137 of 210
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New Things.
"Behold, I make all things new"
(Rev. 21: 5).
pp. 75 - 79
In the old days we were told to `make do and mend'. Certainly, things were made to
last, and as money was scarce we could not afford to throw things away if they would
serve after repair. Times have changed, and to keep the wheels of industry turning
businessmen must sell more and more. So there is the term `planned obsolescence', and
we are encouraged to throw things away and buy new. Even if they are not worn out they
are out of date. However, we are now beginning to realize how great is the waste, and
thought is being given to a way of using the material instead of losing it. We hear of
`recycling'; for example, we collect waste paper which can be used to make new paper.
Jeremiah was told to go down to the potter's house where he saw the potter at work.
A vessel he had made was marred, so he made another vessel out of the clay (Jer.xviii.4).
The word of the Lord came to Jeremiah:
"Behold, as the clay is in the potter's hand, so are ye in Mine hand, O house of Israel.
At what instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up,
and to pull down, and to destroy it; if that nation ... turn from their evil, I will repent ...
if it do evil in My sight ... I will repent of the good ..." (Jer. 18: 6-10).
The history of the children of Israel shows how often they departed from the Lord to
serve idols. How often the Lord had to punish them! The promises of the covenant still
hold good, but as the time passes, as Peter says, many ask the question "Where is the
promise of His coming?" (II Pet. 3: 4). When will the kingdom be set up? When will
the promises made to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob fulfilled?
The need of Israel is a change of heart. When John the Baptist preached, he called for
repentance. How will the kingdom come? If we refer to Jer. 31:, we can learn how
the Lord will work. In the past the Lord has had to pluck up, or throw down, or destroy,
but a change of heart will make such a big difference. The Lord will watch over Israel
to build, and to plant (Jer. 31: 27, 28). Instead of a conditional covenant, the Lord will
make a new covenant with Israel, which will be an unconditional covenant. He will put
the law in their inward parts and write it in their hearts. "I will be their God and they
shall be My people" (Jer. 31: 31-33). When David sinned, he prayed "Create in me a
clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me" (Psa. 51: 10). This is a picture of
what will happen to Israel.
In the O.T. for example, in the Psalms, Isaiah, Jeremiah and Ezekiel, there are
prophecies telling of God's intentions for Israel. In the N.T., particularly in Revelation,
we see pictures of how those prophecies will be fulfilled.
Ezekiel speaks of the new heart which Israel will be given:
"And I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within you: and I will take
the stony heart out of their flesh, and will give them an heart of flesh" (xi 19).