Everything is new, Revelation 21:1a, 5a-e
The extent of the newness is staggering. It goes from one end to the other (heaven and earth, 1a) and includes everything in between (all things, 5a). The process began, I think, as soon as the first things were corrupted by humanity’s rebellion (Genesis 3). From that moment the undercurrent of temporal existence has been the continual work of God towards the way it should be—must be. It’s like the pressure building up in a steam cooker with a clogged valve. You have no idea what is really happening until the pinto beans are hurled into every crevice of the kitchen. Now, it’s not that there were no clues. The evidence was there to be seen, but the seer was distracted.
“Behold, I am making all things new…” v.5a
This astounding and beautiful truth is the outside edge of the chiasm whose center is a metaphor of the deepest intimacy possible—a relational, intertwined picture of the beginning of this forever newness (v.2c). We may glimpse this forever newness in more or less frequent moments, but we cannot see it until the distraction goes away.