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Tag Archives: new jerusalem

Rev. 21:22-27

6/4/10 In this city was no naos, the sanctuary portion of the temple. The sanctuary was the visible representation of God’s presence among his people. Now that God is there no representation is needed. The capital of the universe has been moved to earth.

As the city comes down Zech 14 describes how Jesus’ feet touch the Mount of Olives and spreads and flattens out a huge plain for the city.

The sun and moon do not necessarily disappear from the earth. If Isaiah 24 can be taken as a literal picture of the new earth then there will still be evening and morning and even seasons. But in the city things are constant. The light of the sun and the moon make no visible impact on the city because the light of the Lamb and God overpower all other light. Therefore it would be reasonable to expect that night still comes in the rest of the earth.

In v. 24 the nations and the kings of the earth are a description of the redeemed, not the wicked, as these terms refer to earlier in Revelation. Earth is restored and God’s people rule. We come to the holy city bringing with us the glory God has given to us.

The city is still the most holy place on the earth. Although the earth is recreated and perfect, the place God dwells is special. The nearer one comes to God the more holy everything is. Nothing unclean will ever enter the city.

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Posted by on August 6, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Rev. 21:15-21

5/24/10 The angel measures the city. The measuring of the temple in other instances is an evaluation of the spiritual integrity of the people. Measuring appears to suggest not so much the idea of dimensions for the sake of actual measurement but for the purpose of illustration. The holy city is massive. Whether or not the dimensions are literal is debated, but it’s clear that the measurements illustrate both perfection and adequacy to contain all of God’s people.

The city is a square about 1,300 plus miles either on a side or in circumference. It’s also as tall as wide, though the text is unclear whether the entire city appears as a cube or the highest pinnacle reaches to that height.

John sees the city with a high wall, which is what he would have understood. However, it’s interesting to note that when Gog attacks in Ezekiel he attacks a people without walls for security. The holy city doesn’t need a security barrier, so if the wall is literal it is decorative. The gates are always open, after all.

The wall appeared to be like jasper and the city of pure, clear gold. The twelve foundations of the wall were made of different precious stones, which can’t really be identified with certainty. The possible parallel with the stones in the high priest’s breastplate seems to lead nowhere, but it’s still worth noting. In the end the description of the city may not need to be analyzed to death but considered mostly for its wow factor.

 
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Posted by on August 2, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Rev. 21:9-14

5/23/10 V. 9, One of the plague angels, possibly the same one who showed John the counterfeit woman in Rev 17, now shows him the bride of Christ. The angel carries him away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain and shows him the Holy City.

I don’t know if there’s any connection but I’m reminded of the last temptation of Jesus when Satan took him to a high mountain and showed him all the nations of the world in their glory. Jesus had resisted the temptation to accomplish something like what John was now seeing, but Satan was offering him an easier way, without the suffering of the cross.

But Jesus had resisted Satan’s temptation and now this was happening in the real way: the Holy City filled with the people of God, ready for sin to be eradicated, and life to be re-created anew.

John describes the city as best he can using the limited language of humanity. He saw the city in terms that he would recognize. To try to build a picture of what the city actually looks like would be impossible from this description.

The number 12 is mentioned again and again with significance. The 12 gates can be translated the “the 12 gates are 12 angels.” On the gates are written the names of the tribes of Israel. One only enters the Holy City by belonging to Israel in Jesus. The wall also has 12 foundations with the apostle’s names written on them.

 
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Posted by on August 1, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Rev. 21:1-4

5/20/10 John saw bits and pieces of the life to follow the thousand years, but first he sees the New Jerusalem making its descent. The first heaven and the first earth are being re-created. And God’s heaven (the third heaven, 2 Cor 12:2) is being moved to earth and they are being combined. God’s capital will be on earth among his “rulers.”

No longer will there be any sea. Some say that this sea must be literal, citing that heaven and earth are literal so therefore the sea must be also. However, that doesn’t necessarily have to be. It would be a pretty obvious possibility for heaven and earth to be literal and the sea to be symbolic given the way that the sea has been used symbolically throughout the book of Revelation. Thus no longer being any sea would symbolize the absence of the negative aspects of nations, peoples, and languages (Rev 17:15). That said, however, there’s no reason that the sea couldn’t be literal as well. That would only mean that when God re-creates the earth it would be easy enough for him to change the earth’s geography to not include massive oceans. However, that detail probably isn’t the primary reason it is included.

So the city of God, the New Jerusalem, comes down as a bride “made ready.” The Greek form of the word there is the completion of a transformation begun in process before.

As the city descends a loud voice announces that God is moving in. He will be among us and live among us. We shall be his in an unfathomable way and he will be our God as he is to no one else.

All pain of the emotional sort anyway, will be over. Death is gone, finished. All that has been of evil are passed away. There is no corner of the universe where the former things still exist, even if they are screaming in pain. In other words, hell can’t be forever ongoing.

 
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Posted by on July 26, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Rev. 20:11-15

5/19/10 After the thousand years and after the New Jerusalem has come down and after the wicked have surrounded the city but before they are destroyed, they are judged.

This scene of judgment might be exactly how this will take place. As the the wicked prepare to take the city they are stopped in their tracks by God upon his throne. They see their lives play out before them and they understand why they are not among the redeemed. It would be at this point that every knee shall bow and acknowledge that God is just. This does not mean that they repent, but they do admit that God is right.

Once this is over, the wicked advance against the city. It is their last stand in their rebellion. Everyone who has ever lived on earth is now alive. The redeemed in the city and the wicked in their fallen state outside of the city. Now that everyone in the universe has seen and acknowledged the justice of God, God finally puts an end to all sin and evil. He burns the wicked according to their agreed upon punishments and the fires of hell go on to burn the entire earth with a purifying fire in preparation for its re-creation.

 
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Posted by on July 25, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Rev. 20:7-10

5/18/10 The background allusion here is Eze 38-39. The thousand years are done. Satan has been imprisoned on the decimated earth with no one to deceive because the wicked died at the glory of the Second Coming and the righteous went to heaven. The holy city coming down isn’t described until the next chapter, but this scene takes place after the holy city has descended from heaven.

Satan is released by a resurrection of all the wicked who have lived since the beginning. Fhe forces of Gog in Ezekiel are listed and they are all traceable back to Noah. So Satan deceives the nations (four corners of the earth) convincing them that they can take the city for themselves.

There is an innumerable host of them and they surround the city. It would have to be a great number in order to surround a city that is possibly 1,500 miles per side, or maybe 300 miles. Still, either way, it’s big.

When the New Jerusalem descends it creates a vast plain. This is where the wicked gather and God rains down fire upon them. This is hell. They are devoured, literally “ate down.” They will be like stubble, says Malachi. The devil himself will receive his punishment and the earth will be purified of all evil and made ready for re-creation.

 
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Posted by on July 23, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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