Summary of passage: God will create a new heavens and earth and the former things will not be remembered. Rejoice in what God will create for Jerusalem will be a delight for God himself will delight in Jerusalem and what He creates. The sound of weeping will be heard no more. People shall live a long time and they shall build houses and eat what they reap with no one to take that away from them. They will be blessed by the Lord who will enjoy the fruits of their toils and have blessed children. Before the people call God will answer and God will hear while they speak. The wolf and the lamb shall feed together and no one will harm or destroy on God’s holy mountain.
6a) There will be new heavens and earth. We will not remember our former lives. Jerusalem will be a delight and joy. The sound of weeping and crying will no more be heard. Early death will be vanquished. People will build houses and dwell in them and plant crops and eat them. Enemies will no longer exist. God’s chosen ones will enjoy the works of their hands. They will be blessed by the Lord who will answer their prayers before they are even spoken and will listen as they speak. The wolf and the lamb will eat together. The lion will become a plant-eater. The serpent will eat dust. Nothing will be harmed or destroyed on God’s holy mountain.
b) Personal Question. My answer: It gives me hope for a better future. That my problems are just temporary and will one day disappear all together. That the world’s pain will end and so will mine and others. Life will cease to be a struggle and all will be good as God has always intended. I will be so in tune with God that He will answer my prayers before I even speak. Awesome!
7) I think Isaiah is speaking of both. In verses 17-19, Isaiah is describing the eternal state (Revelation 20:11-15) and in verses 20-25, Isaiah switches to describing the millennium earth (Revelation 20) where Jesus is reigning here on Earth.
The eternal state is described in Isaiah 65:17-19 and Rev 21:1-8. Here, Isaiah says the former things will not be remembered, something that happens after the millennium reign. In Ezekiel 40-46, the building of the temple is for the millennium reign, not for the Eternal State (See BSF Lesson 27, Day 3, Question 7 here). The sound of weeping and crying only ends in the eternal state, not in the Millennium reign (Rev 21:2-27, specifically verse 4). There is death in the Millennium state, something that would cause tears and heartache in my mind.
The millennium earth is described in Isaiah 20:25 and 2 Peter 10-13. Here, Isaiah still says there will be death (something that happens in the millennium reign of Christ, NOT in the eternal state where there is no death. People will still have to work to feed themselves and build their own houses. This does not occur in the eternal state.
2 Peter 10-13 says the heaves will disappear and the earth shall be laid bare. Rev 20:4-6 describes the judgment of man and those who have been risen to reign in the 1000-year reign. Rev 21:1-8 says God will create a new heaven and earth and a new Jerusalem. God will live with men and wipe away every tear and end death and pain. His chosen shall inherit the new heaven and earth. The evil-doers shall reign in the lake of burning sulfur right next to Satan.
8a) 2 Corinthians 5:17 says anyone who is in Christ (who has the Holy Spirit dwell within) is a new creation; the old has gone, the new come. Isaiah 65:17 says God will create a new heavens and earth and the old will be forgotten. 2 Timothy 1:14: “Guard the good deposit that was entrusted to you–guard it with the help of the Holy Spirit who lives in us.”
Jesus gave us new life. He created us anew when we accepted what He did for us on the cross. When Jesus comes again, He will reign for 1000 years and bring judgment and God will create a new heaven and earth in which to dwell. Both passages attest to God’s greatness, His love for us, and His desire to give us everything we need (Salvation and life with Him) and more.
See also: Romans 8 and John 14:15-21
b) Personal Question. My answer: Yes. Because I have accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior, the Holy Spirit dwells within so I am made new by God. 1 Corinthians 3:16 “Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you?”
When you accept Jesus, your views and character change, which makes you a new creation. Man seeks new purposes and lives for new ends.
Conclusions: BSF is certainly ending on a bang. This was one of my favorite days of the year (any lesson that takes me 2 days to complete ends up on my list!). I learned a ton about Jesus’ Second Coming and about the Holy Spirit. I loved pondering being a new creation. I’m not just a number, one of billions on Planet Earth. I’m one of God’s new creations. He made me. He knows me. Intimately. Something I frequently forget. It brightens my day to think of me as such.
I loved verse 24 “Before they call I will answer.” I can’t wait for such a day although in one sense God already answers since He has our whole lives planned out. I wonder though if this means God will speak directly to us when we talk to Him? I sure hope so!
End Notes: My understanding of the End Times is this: First, Jesus will come to the Earth and reign for 1000 years (the millennium reign) during which time Satan shall be locked away. Jesus will bring final judgment to all and keep only the remnant. After 1000 years, Satan shall once again be free to do His evil work “for a short time” (Rev 20:3), to deceive the nations once more before being thrown into the lake of burning sulfur for eternity (Rev 20:10). God will then judge those remaining, including those whom Satan recruited after his release from prison. Finally, God will then create a new heavens and earth with the remnant, His chosen people who survived Satan’s assault, where every tear shall end and death shall vanish.
I’d love to hear your views on the topic. I’m still learning!
Helpful Websites I used for today:
Enduring Word is my favorite. But today, they nailed it on the head. I used them extensively to understand Question 7: http://www.enduringword.com/commentaries/2365.htm
I loved Question 8 as well. I liked Galatians 6:15: “Neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything; what counts is a new creation.” Here, Paul’s point is it doesn’t matter what you try to do on the outside to appear Christ-like, it’s what’s on the inside (your heart for Jesus) that matters. Paul continues in Ephesians 4:24: “to put on a new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.”
The below website is superb. Go here first for question 8. A fabulous explanation of the new character and references many Bible passages that’ll keep you busy for hours!
On 2 Corinthians 5:17: http://bible.cc/2_corinthians/5-17.htm