My wife and I started watching ‘Pan’s Labyrinth’ last night. We got about 15 minutes in and it was far too brutal to continue watching. However, it did get me thinking.

 

Earlier in the day I was having a conversation with one of our neighbours who was racially abused the other day, and we also got talking about when I was mugged last year. The horror of senseless, random violence really struck home and disturbed me.

 

As I was mulling all these conversations and the film over walking along a sun-drenched street my thoughts went to the future. It struck me again how comforting the words at the end of Revelation are. Rev 21: 1Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea25On no day will its gates ever be shut, for there will be no night there.

 

Thankfully Revelation 21 is not saying there will be no trips to the beach! For the Hebrews the sea represented chaos and disorder – and those will be absent in heaven. And the gates of the city will never have to be shut because there will be no threat from outside.

 

Sometimes as I walk along the street I get slightly nervous thinking about what happened the other year, and how it was a case of simply being in the wrong place at the wrong time. But in the new heaven and new earth there will be none of that. The senseless violence of this world should disturb us. We should feel that it is not right. But what it should also do is make us look to a world that is the reality of which our world is merely a shadow.

 

5He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”

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