I am about to do a new thing;Isaiah 43:18–19 (NRSV)
now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?
I will make a way in the wilderness
and rivers in the desert.
The prophet proclaims that Yahweh is about to do a new thing. Do you not perceive it?
Did you notice that the new thing is described as being in the midst of the old thing? The new thing brings refreshing to the desert by providing water. It brings direction through the overwhelming confusion of the wilderness.
I (Jesus) am making all things new.Revelation 21:5
Notice that Jesus didn’t say I am making all new things. But all things new. Major difference there.
Jesus came to the people of Israel first and remained with them for the duration of his ministry. These are the people of the First Covenant that God was not about to give up on without sending his son for an up close and personal encounter. His desire…make all things new.
Jesus said in Acts 1:8 that the first place to be witnesses is Jerusalem before heading to the ends of the earth.
Paul, the apostle to the Gentiles, always, and I mean always, started in a new location by going to the synagogue. Only after getting kicked out of the synagogue in a particular city did he go to the Gentiles. Even coming to Rome in Act 28 the first people Paul calls to spend time with are the Jewish diaspora. Why? To make all things new before making new things.
Where are the deserts and wildernesses in your life? These are the places that God wants to do a new thing. Do you perceive it? Or will you be looking for the new things to be in new places? Sometimes God may open a new door, but quite often God keeps the door shut and remodels the place you are instead. It is tough work. It is major mess.
I am about to do a new thing…do you not perceive it?