God Makes New Things

God Makes New Things March 25, 2024

Practical Spirituality series

While writing a course for New Adults on how to create change, I expanded on an idea that the prophets and Jesus brought change, but we don’t currently explore this. We understand God is always the same, and people are always the same. We’re satisfied with the status quo. Yet neither God nor man always behave the same. God changes things. People change and we create change.


Good Versus Evil. MS Designer AI.
Good Versus Evil. MS Designer AI.

In Isaiah 43: 16-21, the Prophet speaks of God making a way for people through the mighty waves of the sea, a road through the Wilderness, and a river through the desert. God is the powerful one who can change things for them. He tells them not to remember past prophecies about being taken away to foreign lands, but that God is doing something new with them.

Okay, we get God rescued the Jews from their enemies. But it speaks more directly to the nature of God. God loves us despite our errors and makes a way forward for people out of difficulties they brought on themselves.

Jesus brought enormous change

Jesus was a Jew with a mission to Judaism. He spent nearly all of his time on that mission. Although he made limited excursions into non-Jewish territory himself, he made his apostles focus on Jews during his tenure walking on earth. He had to complete that mission.

He said to people, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” Why did Jesus say this? Weren’t most of them good people who followed the commandments? Let’s look at the verse in some detail before going to a very related verse.

Many Christians interpret the word repent to mean turning away from doing bad things toward doing good things. This is a simple way of saying what Jesus said. But repent means to “change one’s frame of mind and feeling.” And to change one’s principle and practice, or to reform. This is a bit more than just turning your back to stealing from others.

He said, for “the kingdom of Heaven [God] is at hand.” Does this mean we’re all going to die now? Apparently not, based on the evidence that everyone remained and didn’t move to a new grave. The Kingdom of Heaven, which Jesus makes us aware of, is a spiritual kingdom. It’s here and now. This was a very new thing for Judaism. Isaiah was right that God does new things.

This kingdom was a mystery to Jews. Some thought Jesus was going to be a political leader of a kingdom. Many hoped this was true. One of the Jewish rulers, Nicodemus, came to Jesus and said he understood Jesus brought a divine message. Jesus said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God [Heaven].”

Nicodemus imagined Jesus meant going back into his mother’s womb, which was impossible. Jesus replied, “… that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.” He continued to explain, “… He who believes in Him is not judged;” …. “the Light [Jesus, truth] has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil. For everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. But he who practices the truth comes to the Light, so that his deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in God.”

The Jews emphasized the benefits of living the law of Moses. They had no concept in their religion of mortals going beyond this earthly plane. Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. Terminated.

Jesus unveiled a revolutionary idea. People could have eternal life in the Kingdom of God, a spiritual kingdom which was here now. They wouldn’t face any judgment. Entering the spiritual kingdom meant a transformation from one who sought the darkness to one who sought truth and light. But some people hate the light. The light represents truth and love and they can’t accept this.

Can we do things out of love and still break an important law? God’s law is love.

Jesus and Transformation

The joke is on us. Transformation isn’t an instantaneous thing. We spend a lifetime getting our minds changed as we consider what it means to love and incorporate a loving way of life into our being.

When I die, Jesus will most likely say, “I’m not judging you, but go back and repeat lessons one through 999. I would say 1000, but that would be depressing.”

At least we’re in the kingdom. We aren’t those who shun the light and seek evil.

Jesus was all about change. He changed the focus from law to love. He changed the focus from obedience to genuine transformation. He shifted the focus from children who constantly break countless laws, to forever being in the kingdom and forgiven for our failings.

In places in the Bible Jesus made it plain the radical (to Judaism) change that non-Jews were also acceptable to God, and maybe even more. After his resurrection he sent this same message of Good News of forgiveness and the kingdom to them. If you change and seek the light, you’re forgiven – there is no judgment for you, and you’re in the kingdom.

Jesus marveled at the faith of some non-Jews, even of Roman soldiers. He said they would sit with him in Heaven. They sought the light.

Most importantly, Jesus was about making change in us. Transformation. If we transformed, then we would change everything unjust in the world.

Religion changes

We think that religion doesn’t change. An example of change is slavery. The Hebrew Bible recognized slavery was common in that era and had laws pertaining to how slaves from conquered countries should be treated. Prior to the Civil War, people used the Bible to justify slavery.

Jesus didn’t comment on slavery. His disciples only said that slaves should obey their masters. We can assume they said this to avoid causing revolts and chaos which would cause the Romans to hunt the troublemakers. Slavery was common and accepted by religion for over 3000 years, until the world began rejecting it as inhumane in the 1700s.

The transformation within us causing us to see others through the lens of love, made us realize there is no reason to treat those who differ from us any differently than anyone else. We should treat everyone with love.

The founder of the Methodist Church, John Wesley, changed his belief on slavery. This was in the 1700s, 100 years before the US Civil War. Treating others with love eradicates mistreating them. This was a major change in thinking from what the Bible said.

We made other changes as well. Many of these have been in the arena of human rights. No longer permitted is polygamy (marrying more than one person). We no longer force people to stay in marriages when they are being mistreated, even though divorce isn’t the ideal. After wars, instead of leaving nations desolate, we help them rebuild and they become successful friends and partners.

We call governmental service being servants of the people instead of rulers over them. Laws now protect widows and orphans from exploitation. We protect the poor and sick through governmental aid. In doing these things, we enshrine our conscience and love in our laws.

Jesus had no difficulty including women in his ministry. Today, following Jesus’ example, women are on the same plane of equality as men, as they should have been.

Many religious groups have looked at LGBTQ issues and realized that rejecting people who are in love with each other is against following the Way of love. They made changes.

How to get into the kingdom

There is a way into the spiritual kingdom that is forever. It isn’t a secret or part of a cult. It’s a well-defined path followed by those who have faith in God or godly ways of living. It’s the path of seeking light over darkness. It’s the path of those who love, which is expressed as light, as truth, as Jesus, as the way to live (behavior, way, truth, life). It’s the path of those who are transforming (changing their mind, feelings). All these people have in common a presence in the spiritual kingdom of God.

Early followers of Jesus called themselves, “Followers of the Way.” The Way to live is what Jesus taught (I am the way, the truth, and the life). These ways are: people should reject hatred, be forgiving, and love their enemies, and people should change their hearts and their actions (be transformed or born anew or born from above spiritually). Following Jesus’ teachings is the path that leads you directly into rebirth (transformation) and eternal life.

The mission to non-Jews

After his resurrection, Jesus sent his apostles to the world. Some went to Jews and some to non-Jews. Some went to both. The apostles didn’t export Judaism and its laws to non-Jews. Many Christians don’t understand this. They think they are just a different variety of Jews: neo-Jews who follow the laws they choose.

Jesus judged no one and gave no new commandments except to reiterate the Second Commandment to love others. The apostles gave no new laws and didn’t ask Christians to follow Jewish law. The apostles, in the absence of the Law of Moses (first five books of the Bible), gave guidelines that will be the subject of the next article post.


Jesus didn’t ask the Jews to stop being Jews. He asked them to focus on love. Jesus didn’t ask non-Jews to become Jews. He asked them to focus on love.

Jesus’ focus on love was to bring transformation into our hearts and minds. He brought major change so that we would create needed change.

Probability Space

We can show love to others and have a positive impact on their lives in many ways. It’s letting our light shine. It’s about focusing on others as much we do on our own riches. What probability spaces can we open to focus on making specific changes in the world? Where do we see injustice, tragic inequality, and ways to improve the lives of others?

Potential Space

If you think creatively and allow your mind to wander and explore, how can we make the world more just, eliminate tragic inequality, and improve the lives of others?

Some do this through medicine, some government (legislation), technology, and direct help. Are there major changes we can make that enshrine our conscience and love into our way of life?

–           Dorian

Our answer is God. God’s answer is us. Together we make the world better.

About Dorian Scott Cole
Additional information about the author is on the About tab. You can read more about the author here.

Browse Our Archives