And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God.” (Revelation 21:3)
Together…with God…forever. Just imagine!
There, in the city of God, all believers will dwell with the one who is worthy of eternal worship because he was slain, and by his blood he “ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation” (Revelation 5:9). Life with God, which began in the Garden of Eden, will be restored in another garden. This time a heavenly one.
The curse reversed. Glory restored.
This is the Bible’s big story—the story of God’s redemption of helpless and unworthy sinners, at great cost, to recover his glory, and share it with us once again. Blissful joy and peace will return, for “the dwelling place of God [will be] with man…and God himself will be with them.”
Yet our future glory is not merely the restoration of the original state, as glorious as that would be. It is even better, since every person there will know the reality of saving grace. Worship will pour forth from an untold number of rescued sinners who know that they don’t deserve to be there. Unreserved praise will be unending. Together we will sing:
Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing! (Revelation 5:12)
Better than living with him is God dwelling with us…as our God. As it’s been from the beginning, so it will forever be: God initiates fellowship with us.
In the company of the Savior there is no more sorrow. No more loss. His presence makes all the difference. Now rescued from the penalty and power of sin, one day you will be delivered from the very presence of sin. One day your groaning will end. One day your adoption will be complete (Romans 8:23).
God himself will dwell with you…forever.
Never again will you feel alone.
Every one of your losses will find its eternal resting place in his joyful presence. For God himself “will wipe away every tear from [your] eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away” (Revelation 21:4).
Jesus himself “testifies to these things [and] says, ‘Surely I am coming soon.’ Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!” (Revelation 22:20)
[An edited version of this post is now part of the forthcoming devotional, A Small Book for the Hurting Heart.]