June 29, 01

As perhaps many of you know, there has seemed to be much talk lately about the "lost continent of Atlantis." Particularly with the new movie that has just been released from Disney, a reemergence if you will, about this ancient culture and an interest in it, has been brought to the forefront again. If I would, I will capsulate a brief account of the Atlantian story, and draw a connection with our hope in a "New Eden," if you will.

The original text of and account of Atlantis has been documented from the writings of Plato who in turn, received his account from a Greek ruler, Solon, who visited Egypt circa 590 BC. Plato's writing was around 370 BC, and his legend mentions about how the people of Atlantis became complacent and arrogant and that in punishment the "gods" destroyed Atlantis, flooding it and submerging the island in one day and night. Much has been written and speculation has abounded as to "where this great civilization had once been." Every place imaginable from the island of Thera, off the coast of Greece, to Antarctica, to a hidden mountain area in Chile, the Bahamas, to a submerged area off the eastern coast of India, has been proposed. Men and women have spent their entire lives in search of this lost continent. They have formulated theories about this "super race" of mankind. They have mentioned how ingenious and advanced they were. They have said how they had risen to such heights, and yet had been destroyed in a day; in a cataclysmic destruction. Such men as Edgar Cayce have written under the spiritual guise of channeling, and have prophesied that Atlantis would reemerge during a certain time period. That time period has come and gone and nothing has been seen except the "natural formations of the sea bottom in that area."

It has been said that Atlantis has had importance for mankind. To quote: "Atlantis is the source of all Religion, all Science and all races and civilizations. Its discovery now, at the very dawn of the Millennium, has been predicted from deepest antiquity, and is indeed the true message of the Gospels and other such Holy Books. The discovery of Atlantis brings back the hope of rebirth of the Golden Age, with its promise of universal peace, harmony, love and happiness for all Mankind. It will also cause a major revolution in our view of the world and of both our past and our future. All this is to happen now, as we enter the Third Millennium, the Age of Aquarius. " Well, I say that we look to a "New Heavens and a New Earth." I don't believe in a "golden age." Forgive me if I sound like a cynic, but I don't see that man in his achievements, can rise to the heights, and build another Atlantis, if you will. I see some that propose that the church will rise to these new heights. They say that a new government will be established upon this earth. They say that once we all recognize how God is reestablishing His government through the various offices of apostles, prophets, pastors, teachers, and evangelists, then somehow, a new world, a "golden world," will emerge. I have no doubt that great strides will and have been made for the kingdom. I believe that His word has been brought to the ends of the earth. But I don't believe that the basic tendency of mankind will change until a New Kingdom that "is to come," will occur. Will sin be blotted off the face of the earth? Will unselfishness and love take precedence over darkness? I believe, and I am secure in the fact that God's kingdom will be established. But it won't happen until the present earth and heavens are melted away. I am not a doomsday prophet. Nor am I one who has lost their hope in how God can change mankind. I truly believe that we are "more than conquerors," and that "With God all things are possible." But these things, this "golden age," if you will, will not happen until the this earth is redeemed and out of the ashes, comes a "New Heaven, a New Earth, and a New People.

Let us hear the words of the prophet Isaiah:

ISA 65:17-25 "Behold, I will create new heavens and a new earth. The former things will not be remembered, nor will they come to mind. But be glad and rejoice forever in what I will create, for I will create Jerusalem to be a delight and its people a joy. I will rejoice over Jerusalem and take delight in my people; the sound of weeping and of crying will be heard in it no more. "Never again will there be in it an infant who lives but a few days, or an old man who does not live out his years, he who dies at a hundred will be thought a mere youth; he who fails to reach a hundred will be considered accursed. They will build houses and dwell in them; they will plant vineyards and eat their fruit. No longer will they build houses and others live in them, or plant and others eat. For as the days of a tree, so will be the days of my people; my chosen ones will long enjoy the works of their hands. They will not toil in vain or bear children doomed to misfortune; for they will be a people blessed by the LORD, they and their descendants with them. Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will hear.The wolf and the lamb will feed together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox, but dust will be the serpent's food. They will neither harm nor destroy on all my holy mountain," says the LORD.

2PE 3:11 Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives [12] as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat. [13] But in keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, the home of righteousness.

So let us strive to do all we can now, to be all that we can be in God. Let us do the work that is before us, and yet, not forget who has redeemed us, and given us a new name. Let us not look to the past, except to learn the lessons that it would teach us. Let us look ever forward, to our ever-present hope. Truly He has given us "all things," in Him, and He has given us life more abundantly, even now. We will reign as kings and priests with Him forever. Let us learn the lessons of the past and not repeat them again. Then we will truly be wise and will shine like the sun. Let us, however, shine like the "Son."


Stephen Hanson