When “New” Was New

[This post is in a weekly devotional series called Everything New. Sign up here if you’re interested.]

They say you only have one chance to make a first impression. That is because “new” can only be new once.

What an impression God made at the start of all things. The very beginning of the very beginning was that Genesis moment when the wish of God became the word of God which then became the world of God. “God said ‘let there be…’”

It all happened in an instant. There was nothing; and then there was a universe where there had been nothing. Hebrews 11:3 puts it this way: “By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible.” Theologians refer to this as creation ex nihilo, “out of nothing.” It would be remarkable enough if God created mountains and seas, reptiles and mammals, men and women out of some pre-existing clay. But that is not how it happened. There was nothing. Absolutely nothing. No molecules or energy waves; no planets or stars. And then there was a universe. The desire of God made real. The real beginning. The first new thing.

So whenever we long for something new to happen in our lives or in the world–especially those things we know only God can do–we can know that God likes beginnings. He really does. Otherwise the Bible wouldn’t say so much about new beginnings. God longs to renew what has become tired, broken, confused, shattered or corrupted in our lives. He just does not give up. At the end of Scripture God says “I am making everything new!” (Rev. 21:5). What does “everything” include? Let’s think about that together.

As we unpack what that means in this new weekly devotional we’re calling Everything New our foundation is this big truth: God invented “new.” And that’s because of who he is.

What do you think?

[This post is in a weekly devotional series called Everything New. Sign up here if you’re interested.]

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69 thoughts on “When “New” Was New

  1. This is very interesting indeed.
    I really want to preach about this new, when new is new concept.
    It gives a new breath into Christianity and Religion especially coming after Easter when The lord Jesus Christ put his life on the line so that through his blood, we are made holly and new.


  2. I believe when it says in Psalm 139 “create in me a new heart”, when I truly repent, GOD creates a NEW heart within me – Praise the LORD!

  3. This devotional hit the right spot. I have recently been renewing my relationship with God…my home church is in complete disarray after an untimely death in the leadership and I feel a bit disconnected and lost. As I struggle with whether or not to stay with my present fellowship or search for another church family, I realized that I needed a new start. My spiritual life had become rote and uninspiring…and that was my fault. I am pursuing a rebirth…a recommitment to the God I have loved since my teenage years and this devotional encouraged me. I can have a new beginning…my life can encompass the excitement and blessing of serving and loving the living God. I am excited that God loves new beginnings and that’s right where I am. Thanks for the inspired teaching…I’m on my way!

  4. I believe that when we finally say yes to Him it is a new beginning in our lives and He loves that new beginning. We have a chance for a new first impression with Him. He forgives us for all the times we start anew and then fall by the wayside. My new beginning is saying yes to Him and working daily to educate myself to spread His word and sticking with it. I believe this is a new beginning that He is happy with and with God’s help I will continue to be a new person in Him through Christ. I love new beginnings also and with Him I will fulfill what I am called to do. I will be able to make many new first impressions with Him by my side and me listening to what He is saying to me, calling me to do. We are blessed that He gives us new beginnings if we only ask.

  5. Even after all of the affluence and material things we are given and worship, God gives us a chance for a new beginning everyday. We are able to refocus our attention to Him who made everything and has given it to us to use for His purpose. When we forget that all thing come from Him, God wants us to begin anew with Him always.

  6. Thank you. This was something I already knew. But there is always a wow when we read it again sometimes we forget these things. God love us so much and you are right everyday is a new day if we stumbled yesterday he gives another chance the next day. God is so good.

    Have a blessed day,


  7. I think for me new is when we confess our sins to God and ask for his forgiveness and He gives us another chance. The fact that He has forgiven me gives me another chance to start anew in His eyes. The meaning of “new” should not be taken literally in the context of the relevant verse, by “making everything new” is being given a nother chance.

  8. That is great ,we all need to realise that God is a God of new beginings. This is encouraging us not to give up whatever our circustances. Praise the Lord who constantly fill us with hope that cannot fail.

  9. Very good. Very, very good. I was refreshed by this and am looking forward to more “new things.”

  10. Hello,
    Just had a cateract removed yesterday so could not make out what it said. My husband has helped me to send this to you. Would it be a problem to send this in a bigger letter format for about a month? When I recieve the scriptures It is narrated and that helps so much. Praise the Lord in any case. Thank you for everything.
    Blessings to you and all those you love,
    Your sister in Christ.

  11. Dear Mel,

    Just a note on creation ex nihilo. A few months ago I saw a couple of fascinating shows about astrophysicist Stephen Hawking and his latest theories from his latest book. He thinks he has found the final key to unlocking the secrets of the universe (the mystery of the gravitational force), completing a total integrated theory, and that though he can’t say that God doesn’t exist, he feels everything can now be explained apart from God. What I found so fascinating was the conclusion he came to that everything came into being out of nothing! It seems to me that you have to either posit God or believe that matter/energy has always existed. If whatever came into being in the beginning just appeared, why is it so difficult to believe in an eternal God who brought it into being? It seems he doesn’t want to face what his own conclusion is telling him.

  12. I never quite thought of it that way. It’s almost like we set boundaries on God, as if he was not the author of our lives. Thank you, beautiful message.

  13. Everything new means nothing is second-hand, recycled, or used before and made into something else.

  14. It is encouraging to know that God makes everything new, including me. When this knowledge became rooted deep within me, it has caused a change in me so profound it is difficult to describe it.
    I look forward working through this devotional. Thank you.

  15. I just wanted to let you know that I signed up for this thinking it would be nice to see what new is. This past sunday I realized that I had drifted away from God. It really is tru what they say, it’s a slow fade. As I read this devotion this morning I thought, I am starting new. I am beginning again on my journey with God to do it His way this time. Thanks for helping on the way.

  16. This was right on time. I just texted my son who is a little down right now, that today is a new day. And then this devotional affirmed my heart”s cry. It is wonderful when the Holy Spirit is able to privately affirm a personal emotion and belief while at the same time tossing in icing on the cake by showing that we as brothers and sisters in Christ are truly unified hearing one voice one heart. And then to put the candles on the cake, he topped it off with a cool and rejuvenating celebration. How wonderous and thoughtful and that it really was done out of love desire for us to be with him.

  17. I think He ment us as the people who has given our life to him as well as a whole new universe for us to dwell in that has never been seen before one that will have none of the hurtful or painful qualities that this old universe have but a new dwelling place where we will free in each others prescence and HIS prescence and we wont have to worry about nothing ever again .Hallelujah waiting patiently on this (NEW)

  18. Thank you — Awesome – awesome words that God longs to, and can, renew what is broken and corrupted. Awesome God.

  19. All of us who follow Christ know that God created all that is and all that will be. But, those of us who are realists, also know that as the Holy Scripture says, “for a thousand years are but as yesterday to Him.”
    Our Savior died on the cross for us and knew that it would be so. He was the ultimate realist. He did not teach any doctrine of worship or any unrealistic view of creation. He knew God’s plan was beyond the mortal comprehension of man. It still is. But it still is real and always will be.

  20. I think everything means just what it says everything is all that ever is or ever will be, including you and me, Heaven and Earth. If I move and take everything with me there will be nothing left behind.

  21. When I think of Everything New I think of a baby, a toddler, a child growing up and experiencing new things all the time at an alarming rate. New foods with different textures, bubbles and how they pop, standing in the rain, etc. I think of how, as a parent I watch with joy, anticipation of their reaction and sometimes apprehension. Even when watching a child that is not my own, I watch with a smile on my face as that child experiences something they have never experienced before. It is amazing to watch and brings rejuvenation to your soul. I wonder if God is watching us with joy as we take steps of faith and learn about Him and His character – something we’ve learned about Him that is new to us. Does He see the wonder on our face and feel our desire to learn more and more – the burning passion to know Him? This gives me rejuvenation to think that the God who created the Universe wants me to experience life a new through the death and resurrection of His son so that even at my age I, like a toddler, can experience something new everyday when I look at my life, my family, my friends, my circumstances through the eyes of Jesus, who gives me that sight by the Holy Spirit living inside of me. Amazing! Refreshing! Rejuvinating!

  22. The devotional provides an excellent example of what NEW truly means. The most important point, in my opinion, is the sentence “God longs to renew what has become tired, broken, confused, shattered or corrupted in our lives. ” If all of us could grab hold of that idea, we would all be much happier during our visit here on earth.

    Looking forward to next week.

  23. Beginnings are often viewed in so many ways. When I think of new beginings, I think of new possibilities, opportunities, fresh start and look forward with anticipation in expectancy of what is yet to be shown. A new born baby is a prime example, a new begining. When cared for and encouraged throughout the growth process they’re able to pick up cues from their environment. When God gives us a new begining, we learn to develop faith and trust the same way knowing he will lead us to the destination he has prepared, one the gosl is reach we are in a constant cycle if renewal, learning, exploring and living in the joy and blessings he gives so freely.

  24. Hey. Here is a reaction from Belgium.
    I lost my trust in God when I was 14. I had called so many times for help that I was convinced that He was not there anymore.

    I am 52 now and I have found a old new God. He is the same as He always was, but I was not listening then, but in 2003 I ‘ve had some long talkes with a teacher in religions that I learned that He is still there and that I have to be open to Him, listen to His words, looking in my soul.
    God now lives in one of the chambers of my heart and I often talk to Him. I feel that that helps me.

    I am really happy when I read the texts I get in my mailbox. Including this new one…

    With Love and Warmth,
    Gerd, near Antwerp, Belgium

  25. Each day we wake, God gives us a new opportunity to follow his word and if we follow, we are made New. This is such a blessing that God has given his people!

  26. Just reading the start of what’s new I am excited to read more and to discover new things from God for my life.

  27. Very good article. Isn’t it wonderful to know that God makes all things new? Very encouraging message. I agree with Deana that the script could be a little bit larger for us sight challenged people.

  28. God is so Awesome, we have Victory in Jesus in our lives!! New Beginnings, I have greatly experienced from God and was so in AWE of Him. Adivorce of amarriage I cared about, put me in distraught, i packed up and moved from missouri to Oregon, I let go of everything back there, and God showed me a new life and gave me a new life. Everything i lost was abundantly replaced, i have a wonderful sweet husband and a beautiful home, and I have a better life than I did before. He made everything new in my life and continues to do so, with each New Truth, we are set free.

  29. God is making a new Heaven ane Earth and we will be transformwed into the likeness of Jesus because we will no longer be perishable , the flesh but will become imperisahable, spirit. Hallelujah!………………….

  30. I praise God in His glory that he is the maker of all and the maker of New and Re-New! It’s just as well that we have the chance to repent and start anew seeing that we all suffer from the human condition. Through this ‘starting anew’ we have the chance to repent and to return God’s love and in return be the receiver’s of His agape love! In doing this we receive The Holy Spirit who enables us and fills us to the brim with His Love! How fortunate and special are we! So special to the Lord that He should receive our love in immensurable quantities! Praise Him and love Him and adore Him! :))

  31. Why is it so hard to begin anew or start anew? How do we start? The only thing I can think of that seems possible is to turn it over to the Lord again and again to renew within us a beginning point from which to start.

  32. “He just does not give up”. God is making everything new and I hold on tight to that. Thank you for this write-up, it re-brightens me.

  33. actually i thought that god is a great god,among every and anything i always think about how did every thing first started a mean,my big question to you is how did he start something out of nothing?what did he use to make water and all other things?

  34. Somewhere in our Devotional Readings, we read about the Benedictine Monks who practiced this skill upon awakening: as they consciously noticed their first breath, they would chant -whisper-think “Nunc Coepi.” The latin phrase means “I begin again right now.” Ever since, we have tried this. It makes us grateful to Him, Our Father, for giving us one more day on this earth to try to get it right; one more opportunity to do it His Way. Walk the walk. Rejoice! Pray for guidance. Obey. Forgive. Love. Begin anew.

  35. This means God is not boring. He has infinite creativity. (So why is it that many churches insist on the old?)

  36. Searching fo a new job, being discouraged and disappointed by all the knock backs…. I found encouragement in the fact God never gives up and God likes new beginings. It’s a good place to start each day

  37. I love to share good posting in my blog to encourage myself and others and I”ll be more than an honor to share some of your post if is okay with You.. God Bless YOu

  38. The sheer complexity and beauty of GOD’s actions to make everything New is simply wonderful. God bless you all.

  39. I love it! I am standing in hope of that which is NEW! After being in a place of brokeness for so long, even with the occasional occurences of new growth God gave from time to time to give me hope, I am expecting my entire situation to burst open and blossom in newness!!!!!!

  40. EVERYTHING – my thoughts, feelings, attitude, plans, dreams, hopes, habits, speech, diet, dress…???

    I wish i’ve a completely new life in Christ. bored of my old corrupted, hypocritical life

  41. I KNOW God loves new beginnings and my father God also delights in giving these new beginnings….I just have to wait expectantly, expecting the unexpected

  42. I have never thought about this! Since God invented “new”, how can I fear that He can’t/won’t handle my cares?

  43. The Bible talks about “new” wine and “old” wineskins. We must allow God to transform our wineskins, in order that the “new” wine can be poured in….the wineskin must be new to handle the expansion of the “new” wine…..may God grant us to strenght and willingness to be “renewed” in our hearts and minds…..

    “Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it…..”
    Psalm 127:1

  44. It’s so unfathomable that there was NOTHING and God spoke EVERYTHING into existence. Wow, what an awesome God we serve. I became a NEW creation after I gave my life to the Lord. The darkness and fear of dying left. I couldn’t explain the NEWNESS if I had 100 lifetimes but I know it’s the truth.

  45. Hey, everyone… I am blown away by all the great comments on this first week of Everything New! I hope you’ll keep making the comments, and perhaps comment on other people’s comments. We’ll be uncovering significant issues in the weeks and months to come. So, let’s plunge in together!

  46. Thank you for these words of wisdom!! I am going through a time in my life where I am peeling the layers back of what the world has put in me for God to completely heal me and make me “new”! Thank you for the wonderful encouragement! God Bless!

  47. Ijust want to tell you and your staff you are doin g a great job f or the Lord and he is going to bless you and your company . Fopr doing a great job . I am writting you for one reason that the progam that you got it help me out a lot and the devotion help me with my daily walk with the Lord I just to thank-you for writting this . Well let me close and keep up the good job. James Clyde Walters

  48. That’s what I love about you, Dr. Mel – you always come up with something fresh and new, a new way to look at the world, at scripture, at our relationship with the Lord. Always new, always challenging, always from a new angle. I’m signed up! Keep up the great work. God bless you.

  49. I liked this and I am looking forward to reading more in the future. As I have time I would also like to check out some of your books. Thank you for your contributions.

    Chaplain and Pastor

  50. This “new” stuff is very challenging but necessary. I’ve been a Christian all my life but have not lived a godly life that reflects my beliefs. These last few months God has been tearing down everything that I’ve built up, and I mean everything (business, family, friends etc…). But I now know it’s so HE can build something truly new and not just recycled with old used parts.

  51. Here is what I think-one week later. I am thankful to God for you, Dr. Mel Lawrenz, an anointed writer. (The Brook Network is awesome!) I know it is not a coincidence that my Anointed Teacher/Leader/Pastor, Reverend J.D. Gailliard, would begin a series of sermons/biblical study in May about the Book of Ruth and you would begin the Weekly Devotional called “Everything New” and I would get to participate by being here in His Presence, study and prayer and action! I look forward to Tuesday’s (May 17, 2011) Weekly Everything New Devotional and Sunday’s (May 22, 2011) Sermon.( And I remember a time when there was so much sorrow in my life, I felt it hard to make it through an hour! He’s a Healer!”)
    God said, “Behold! I make all things new.” I’ll transform and renew your mind so that you can behold and be beholdened to Me: “Behold! I make all things new.” Look! God is everything! See! Hear! Everything is God’s. We are children of God, His Creation and EVERYTHING is new. Thank you, God, for your everlasting, forever, yesterday, today and tommorrow beginnings. You love beginnings. You love small beginnings but you also love the faith as small as a mustard seed and will give us audacious beginnings too. Thank you Father, In the Name of Your Precious Son with the Help of the Holy Spirit. In the magnificent, precious name of Jesus! Amen.