He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain. Revelation 21:4
Doctors diagnosed four-year-old Solomon with Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a progressive muscle-degenerating disease. A year later, doctors discussed wheelchairs with the family. But Solomon protested that he didn’t want to have to use one. Family and friends prayed for him and raised funds for a professionally trained service dog to help keep him out of that wheelchair for as long as possible. Tails for Life, the organization that trained my service dog, Callie, is currently preparing Waffles to serve Solomon.
Though Solomon accepts his treatment, often bursting out in song to praise God, some days are harder. On one of those difficult days, Solomon hugged his mom and said, “I’m happy there’s no Duchenne’s in heaven.”
The degenerating effects of sickness affect all people on this side of eternity. Like Solomon, however, we have an enduring hope that can strengthen our resolve on those inevitable tough days. God gives us the promise of “a new heaven and a new earth” (Revelation 21:1). Our Creator and Sustainer will “dwell” among us by making His home with us (v. 3). He will “wipe every tear” from our eyes. “There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain” (v. 4). When the wait feels “too hard” or “too long,” we can experience peace because God’s promise will be fulfilled.
How has acknowledging God’s promise for a new heaven and a new earth comforted you? How can you encourage a hurting friend with the enduring hope of God’s promises?
Loving God, thank You for strengthening my resolve with the surety of my enduring hope.
For further study, read Prophetic Priorities: Wrestling with the End Times.
One aid to understanding the book of Revelation is to recognize that it includes numerous Old Testament allusions. Prophetic echoes from Isaiah, Ezekiel, Daniel, and Zechariah resound throughout the book. Consider two such reverberations from Revelation 21. Verse 1—“Then I saw ‘a new heaven and a new earth’ ”—echoes Isaiah 65:17: “See, I will create new heavens and a new earth.” And Revelation 21:3—“Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them”—sounds like Ezekiel 37:27: “My dwelling place will be with them; I will be their God, and they will be my people.”