THE BOOK OF REVELATION
~ The Revelation of Jesus Christ
Revelation Chapter 21
A New Heaven And A New Earth
Verse 1: And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.
Regardless of what the scientists and writers of science fiction may theorize, of the vast universe that God has created, only the planet earth is ordained to be inhabited. The earth is the testing ground for the angelic and human beings who are God's two great creatures created in His image and likeness.
Christians all over the world are waiting for these visions of the Apostle John to become realities. With a New Heaven and a New Earth to replace the present polluted ones all the things upon the earth will then become new. We will certainly be dazzled and overwhelmed by the awe-inspiring beauty of all the new things which God would bring forth in that day. Undoubtedly, each individual Christian has his or her own picture of how the New Heaven and New Earth will look like.
In order to appreciate the New Heaven and New Earth, it is important for us to know a little history of our earth. Let's first examine the chronology of events as recorded in the Bible pertaining to the heaven and the earth which God has created. We understand from Genesis 1:1 that God created the heaven and the earth in a period called THE BEGINNING which might have been millions, or at least hundreds of thousands, of years in the past. Prophet Isaiah said that God hath established it and created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited (Isa.45:18). And archæological discoveries have pointed to an era when dinosaurs and upright man-like creatures roamed the earth. It was an era before the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep (Gen.1:2a). It has been termed as the Prehistoric Age. The earth, being created in a good state and condition, was meant to be an habitation for all creatures to live harmoniously together during that Prehistoric Era.
Every creature created in the image and likeness of God is endowed with the power to choose between right and wrong. None of them is programmed to be a robot. The angels, being in God's image and likeness, had to be tested on their choice. And what better place than the planet earth could there be to conduct the test? The heaven, being the abode of God, could not be used for that purpose.
Satan was already a fallen angel when he entered the Garden of Eden planted for Adam and Eve. Evidently, he had been tested at some point of time in ages past and, having failed the test, was cast to the ground as recorded in Isaiah 14:12-14 and Ezekiel 28:11-17.
In John 8:44, Jesus said (to the unbelieving Jews): Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.” In saying that, He was not referring to the murder of Abel by Cain, the seed of the Serpent, nor the lie that the Serpent had told Eve. Christ was pointing back to the origin and testing of Satan in his (Satan's) own Garden of Eden on this same earth.
In Ezekiel 28, when Prophet Ezekiel was prophesying, he was not only rebuking the king of Tyrus, a man of glory, who loved to glorify and exalt himself, but also Satan, when he said, Thou hast been in Eden the Garden of God (v.13). But please note carefully that this Garden of Eden, which was made for that Angelic Prince before his fall, was a garden of precious stones and not a garden of vegetation. Adam's garden was a garden of fruit trees and plants. The word Eden simply means a delight or paradise. Everything in that garden of precious stones was made for that anointed cherub; every precious stone was his covering his glory. He was elevated to a place of authority thou was upon the holy mountain of God (v.14). He was perfect in his ways until iniquity was found in him (v.15). He failed his test and fell. From Lucifer Son of the morning he became known as Satan, the adversary of God.
When the seventy disciples returned to Jesus Christ after their successful mission, they were filled with great jubilation that the Lord cautioned them, saying: I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven (Lk.10:17-18). Yes, Satan exalted himself and fell from his first estate, and was cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations (Isa.14:12).
It is evident that Lucifer, who previously had power and control over this planet earth, has been fighting very hard to regain control over it from man, the new ruler, who has been appointed to rule in his stead since the re-creation. He has been trying, by all ways and means, to achieve his ambition. His lies and wicked schemes have filled the earth with all forms of violence and sins. O that devil! He is all out to destroy everything that God had created! Yes, he is the god of this evil age!
Yes, Lucifer was perfect when he was created. But he was not contented with his possessions and status. It seemed that he got bored with his position and began to harbour a secret ambition to be like the Most High (Isa.14:14). God knew it and began to deal with him. That was when iniquity was found in him and he began to cause a 'war' among the mammoth creatures of the earth. Kill! Murder! Destroy! Thus, Lucifer had become a murderer!
And when God confronted him, he told his first lie. He did not abide in the truth. That's right. He was a murderer from the beginning and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him.
The earth was in a state of turmoil and chaos. All the creatures were fighting among themselves and killing one another which caused havoc to the environment around them. The wreckages, together with decomposed carcasses, caused a change in the climatic condition of the earth and lands laid waste. Finally, God decided to stop the wide-spread destruction. All He did was to 'switch off' the sun and cause the whole earth to freeze. Then the fallen angelic prince was stripped of his authority and dominion.
All the angels that followed Satan's evil leadership fell with him. They had left their first estate by choice. Angels that proved loyal to God remained at God's right hand to carry out and execute His plan.
No time period is recorded in Genesis 1:1 regarding God's creation of the heaven and the earth. The events that occurred are not recorded in that one verse. (Obviously to hide the truth from the wise and prudent men.) The process could easily cover æons of time.
The Fall of Satan had brought about the dismal condition of the earth as recorded in Genesis 1:2a. There was no light. It was empty and laid waste. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters and God began to recreate the earth (in six days) to be inhabited once again. This time the animals were created smaller than before. And God said, Let us make man in our own image and after our likeness (Gen.1:26). And MAN was given dominion over every living thing that moved upon the earth. He was to subdue the earth. This was THE BEGINNING of man who was created a little lower than the angels but was crowned with glory and honour, and set over the works of God's hands.
The earth was created in a perfect state. It rotated on an axis that was perpendicular to the sun such that every place on the whole earth was covered daily with 12 hours of light and 12 hours of night. It revolved around the sun 360 days a year a perfect circle. There was no rain; the earth was watered by dew (Gen.2:6). The earth was actually shrouded in a canopy (or fountain) of water which acted like a greenhouse that cut off unwanted heat rays and provided an even temperature all around the earth (Psm.104:5-6 cf. Job 38:9a). However, all these perfect states came to an end when sin entered and in the days of Noah, God broke up the fountains of water and sent a great deluge upon the earth to judge the wicked (Gen.6). When the water upon the earth began to dry up, God did not put all the water back where it originally belonged. The earth was also reshaped by the movements of the soil, caused by the enormous amount of rainfall, such that large 'basins' were created to hold the water. Since then two-third of the earth has been covered with water. Because of the uneven distribution of land and water, the earth became tilted. This tilting of the earth causes the rotation of the earth to wobble and as such its revolution around the sun slows down to the rate of about 365¼ days a year. However, when John saw the New Heaven and New Earth, he actually saw the earth which was restored to its original perfect place with a new heaven (the firmament) around it. John said there was no more sea, that is, there was no more large sea or ocean like the ones we have today. Of course, the new earth will have lakes of water and rivers flowing. Praise the Lord! The old (present) one will soon be gone!
The Holy City, New Jerusalem The Tabernacle of God
Verse 2: And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
Verse 3: And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.
Time, as we know it, will end when the Eighth Day (Eternal Age) begins, but earthly seasons as governed by the sun, moon and stars will continue according to the courses which God had set for them since the beginning when He created and made them (Gen.1:14-18).
The most beautiful and glorious thing that John saw was the NEW JERUSALEM, the Holy City of God. Beloved, note that whatever the New Earth will be, the Holy City, New Jerusalem will occupy a pre-eminent place in the Eternal Age. All things will revolve around it, for she is the fulfillment of God's Ultimate Intention and Purpose His Family born of His Ultimate Conception the Monogene, the (Seed)Word in the beginning. At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you (Jhn.14:20).
Many may picture the New Jerusalem as a literal physical city of gigantic size as described in the last two chapters of the Book of Revelation. Perhaps there are some who may imagine the new age to be very much like a type of space-age world which they read about in 'sci-fi' books. But let's see it the way that John and Abraham had seen it.
The call of Abraham was the beginning of God's revelation to a chosen people concerning the building of His Heavenly Holy City. Read Hebrews 11:8-10. In the Book of Genesis, Moses mentioned nothing about this Holy City. Yet, Abraham was the first to be shown this Holy City of God. He was the Father of the Faith. He saw it afar off and passed on the revelation to his descendants, Isaac and Jacob. On the other hand, there are many records showing how Satan, through his seeds of the Serpent, built many great cities on earth. And after the Flood, through Cush and Nimrod, Satan also deceived the people into trying to build an utopian empire. He deceived them into believing that Heaven could be reached by the mere power of the carnal flesh so as to bind them together in a certain area of the earth. Hence, the building of the tower of Babel. To the contrary, Abraham, our Father of the Faith, was shown that Heaven must come down in order that we might see the Glory of God in our souls.
Abraham was called of God to receive a two-fold inheritance: one, the promised Land of Canaan, and two, the promised City of God. To receive such an inheritance for himself and his descendants had not been an easy thing for him to do. Though he and his descendants sojourned in the land which was theirs by the promise of God, it was only after hundreds of years of trials and testings that they finally gained possession of the inheritance. That was how God would refine a man as gold is refined by the fire! Oh my! Yes, to God a man is far more precious and worth far more than fine gold or even any precious metal or stone. Abraham was tested and refined, Isaac was tested and refined, and so was Jacob tested and refined. They were faithful men with a vision. They were not just looking forward to the inheritance of the promised land, which they did sojourn in, but they were strangers who were looking for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God. They did not see it in their lifetime, much less enter it, for that City was not a literal physical city. Together with many others, they all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. For they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country. And truly if they had been mindful of that country from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have returned. But now they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly: whereby God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city (Heb.11:13-16).
Yes, they were but pilgrims, yet they were a holy nation of faithful people (1 Pet.2:9) on a journey to a land, a country, beyond the sky. They were as stones hand-picked, chiseled and polished by the Master Builder Himself for the day when He would lay down the HEAD Stone as the FOUNDATION Corner Stone of the Heavenly Holy City, New Jerusalem. Then the Supreme One would begin to positionally place these stones as He build His Holy City. And, as promised, the Lamb of God, who was slain even before the foundation of the world, came and fulfilled what was written of Him. Christ Jesus laid down His life as a sure foundation stone in Zion nearly 2,000 years ago that He might fulfill the predestinated purpose of God in building a Holy City for Himself to dwell in for all eternity. Amen. As the old city, Jerusalem was built of earthly stones by the hands of men for men, the Holy City, New Jerusalem is built of spiritual stones by the hands of God for God Himself. Yes, every chosen one of God will then be placed and blessed with all blessings in heavenly places in Christ Who is the Foundation of the City (cf. Eph.1:3-12). Even the stones which were gathered from the time of Adam, before Abraham, and cut accordingly by the Master Builder, would also be positionally placed. Listen to what Paul said concerning us at this time: Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God; And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ, himself being the chief corner stone; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto a holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for a habitation of God through the Spirit (Eph.2:19-22). Yes, sir! For here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come (Heb.13:14). Blessed be the Name of the Lord!
Some theologians have insisted that since the Millennial Temple and the City that the Prophet Ezekiel saw in his visions were literal ones, so will the Holy City, New Jerusalem be literal. Well, the Temple of Ezekiel will be as real and as tangible as the Tabernacle of Moses, Solomon's Temple and Herod's Temple. However, contrary to popular belief, the Holy City, New Jerusalem is not a literal city that has a literal temple in it. Some even believe (or fantasize) that it is a literal city hanging or floating above the City of Jerusalem. As we have just studied, the fact is that the Holy City, New Jerusalem is nothing less than the Glorified Spiritual body of the people of God who have been redeemed throughout the ages since Adam was created until the time Death is destroyed by Jesus Christ (Yahshua the Messiah) Who would then hand back to God the Father (Yahweh) the authority that has been invested in Him, and be subject unto God, that God may be all in all (1 Cor.15:24-28 cf. Heb.12:22).
Notice that John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. This statement plainly tells us that the Holy City, New Jerusalem is the Spiritual Bride(-Wife) of our Lord Jesus Christ. As the Bride of Christ, the Spiritual Holy City, New Jerusalem was adorned (Grk: kosmeo; put in proper order) for our Lord Jesus that God may be all in all as He tabernacles (or dwells) in it. Hence, the Heavenly New Jerusalem is also the Tabernacle of God, which will descend upon the New Heaven and New Earth, for John said that he heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. Did not Jesus say, Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you (Jhn.14:10,20; 2 Cor.6:16b)? That's right, the Glorified Saints of God together form the Tabernacle of God. As the New Heaven and New Earth are made ready and filled with the redeemed nations of natural people, who are saved out of the Age of Regeneration, the Eternal Spirit in His Tabernacle the Bride of Christ would come down and live among them upon the earth. In other words, God and Christ and all His Glorified Saints will come down from Heaven to live among the natural people on the earth.
What the Patriarch Abraham was looking for, the Apostle John saw it. The Holy City, New Jerusalem will be completed when the Eighth Day dawns. And God will tabernacle in It and live among the natural people and be their God. This natural people comprises those redeemed individuals among the nations of the earth who will not succumb to the deception of Satan after his release from prison at the end of the Millennial Age of Regeneration. Because of their faithfulness and obedience to the Law of the Righteous One, they will be saved from the fire of the wrath of God which shall be poured upon those who shall join forces with Satan to rebel and lay siege against the saints of God and His beloved city, the earthly Jerusalem. As nations of faithful and obedient people, they will be granted eternal life in the New Heaven and New Earth. Read Revelation 20:7-10; 21:24,26; 22:2. Hence, there will be two types of people living in the New Earth: the Redeemed Saints with Glorified Bodies, who will make up the Holy City, and the Redeemed People of the Age of Regeneration with Natural Bodies.
Verse 4: And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.
God will renew everything in the New Heaven and New Earth. The heaven (sky, atmosphere) will be completely cleansed of all the corruptions and pollutants, such as putrid gases, destructive chemical agents, and every foul and polluting substance that clog the air. The geographical surface of the earth will be completely altered. The large seas (oceans) of water which cover about 71% of the earth will no longer exist. But there will be rivers and fountains of water, lakes and small seas of water. Most surface waters will return to the firmament of the heaven to swaddle the earth (like a garment) to cool the earth as it was in the days before the fountains of the great deep were broken up and the windows (floodgates) of heaven were opened in the generation of Noah (Gen.7:11). Cities crowded with the infrastructure of buildings, roads, machineries and millions of people will be things of the past. Man-made things which destroy the environment one way or another will cease to exist in the Eternal Age of the New Heaven and New Earth. The old state of things will pass away and all traces of evil, sin and death will be removed. A whole new order of things will then come into existence with the new creation. Man will be one in harmony with the new environment and with all the creations of God. Nature and its products will be the essence of all life. Everything will exist according to the laws of the Tree of Life. No seed of discrepancy will ever exist again as it did in the days of Adam and Eve. Hence, there will be no death, no violence, no oppression, and no misery that will lead to pain, sorrow and tears.
Verse 5: And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful.
Yes, once again the whole earth will be a paradise, a delight, an Eden to the Lord God Almighty. Amen. Surely we can trust the words of the Eternal God, the True and Faithful One sitting upon the Heavenly Throne.
Verse 6: And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.
Verse 7: He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.
Here the Almighty God re-confirms His promise of a new creation to His children when He said, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. That's right, Saints of God, just consider it done! The promises of God never fail. As the Alpha of life and creation, God is the Omega of the same. The beginning and the end have converged to form the circle of eternity. What was to be at the beginning is now at the end. All things are as He had so ordained before the foundation the world.
Therefore, as children of God let us continue to drink of the water of the fountain of life which so freely flows from the Throne of God. Surely our Lord will help us overcome this present evil age that we may inherit all these things that He has promised us in His Son, Jesus Christ. For it is in Christ Jesus that we have received an inheritance, an excellent Name by which we become sons and daughters of the Living God in His Eternal Kingdom (Heb.1:4; 1 Pet.1:4; Eph.1:1-23).
Verse 8: But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.
The Apostle Paul had also written of the same in his epistle to the Ephesian Christians. For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God (Eph.5:5). Notice that all these sinners shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death. Having been judged, each sinner will receive a just payment of punishment which befits the sins he had committed. The sinner will be burned according to his allocated portion of punishment and then finally annihilated. (Like hardened firewood, the more sin-hardened a sinner had been the longer he would burn in the Lake of Fire.) There is no eternal life in the Second Death. The Lake of Fire is prepared for the devil and his angels (Matt.25:41b), and all their evil works which brought forth death and hell. When death and hell are ultimately cast into the Lake of Fire they will be destroyed completely and will cease to exist no more (1 Cor.15:26).
Bride of Christ Lamb's Wife
Verse 9: And there came unto me one of the seven angels which had the seven vials full of the seven last plagues, and talked with me, saying, Come hither, I will shew thee the bride, the Lamb's wife.
Verse 10: And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God,
The Apostle John was carried away in the spirit to a great and high mountain to see that Heavenly Great City, the Holy Jerusalem, just as Prophet Ezekiel was carried in the spirit (in his days) to a very high mountain where he was shown the Temple and the City of David (Ezek.40:2). Recall that such phrases signify a supreme position of great authority and awe. This is the great heavenly position that the Glorified Wife of Christ shall sit with Christ, for the Almighty God and the Lamb will dwell in her (cf. Eph.1:3,19; 2:6). Yes, she will sit a Queen (in the New Heaven and New Earth), even as she will sit with Christ as His Queen in the Age of Regeneration. The Word of the Lord is clear when it stated that the Holy City, New Jerusalem is the bride, the Lamb's wife. And we know that the bride, the Lamb's wife is the Redeemed and Glorified Saints of Christ. Beloved, do not for a moment think that the Holy City, New Jerusalem is a literal city. God does not live in a house made with hands. Read Mark 14:58, 2 Corinthians 5:1-2, Hebrews 9:11 and 10:5. Ask yourself these questions: How could a literal city be the Lamb's Wife? Does not the Scriptures clearly teach that the Elect are the Bride of the Lamb? God is a Spirit. God is Holy and He dwells in Light. God does not need a literal house, or city, to live in or else He would have built one in the Garden of Eden in the beginning. Some may imagine that the Holy City, New Jerusalem is a literal city of mansions created for the Saints to live in. But what use is a mansion of gold to a Glorified Saint? Is there really such a need for it when the Saints themselves possess a far better body than the Angelic beings, a spiritual body like that of our Lord Jesus Christ, which is not bound by the elements of the earth? Think: did Adam and Eve need to live in a house made with hands before the Fall?
Now, all the examples in the Old Testament followed the Heavenly patterns. They were shadows of the Heavenly things (Heb.8:5). The Tabernacle of Moses and the Temple of Solomon foreshadowed Christ Jesus and His Body of believers in the Grace Age of Redemption. But God is not just erecting a Building; He is building a City. Jesus said: In My Father's house are many mansions (Jhn.14:2a cf. Eph.2:19; 1 Cor.12:12,20). The word house carries these meanings: family, residence, household, resting (dwelling) place. In other words, In My Father's residence (or household) are many abodes or In My Father's city are many houses (buildings). The Scriptures clearly state that God has put His Name in a House (Temple) in Jerusalem. In the Age of Regeneration, His Name would remain there forever because The Lord Is There in the Millennial Temple in Jerusalem. This setting foreshadows God in Christ (the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple Rev.21:22) in the redeemed (the Holy City, New Jerusalem) in the New Heaven and New Earth. And since the days of the Acts of the Apostles the Holy City, New Jerusalem has been progressively taking shape. After the Sure Foundation Stone (whose House was Yahweh) was laid in Zion (1 Pet.2:6-8; cf. Isa.28:16), and the Shekinah Glory returned on the Day of Pentecost, more dwelling places (houses) were built as the Spirit breathed life into the 120 disciples, the 3,000 converts, and many more. They were all lively stones being built up as a spiritual house, and set up in the Heavenly Holy City (1 Pet.2:5; Rev.3:12).
Yes, the Temple reflects Christ Jesus Who was the first building set up in the Holy City, New Jerusalem, which City comprises all the Redeemed of the Lord. Hence, the words of the Lord Jesus: In My Father's residence are many abodes (or buildings). If it were not true I would have told you so, for I am going to prepare a place for you. And when I go and make ready a place for you, I will return and take you to Myself, that where I am you may be also (Jhn.14:2-3, paraphrase mine). And the words of the prophets, Isaiah and Zechariah: And the Lord will create upon every dwelling place of mount Zion, and upon her assemblies, a cloud and smoke by day, and the shining of a flaming fire by night: for upon all the glory shall be a defence [Heb: chuppah covering, defence, protection] (Isa.4:5); Thus saith the Lord of hosts; I was jealous for Zion with great jealousy, and I was jealous for her with great fury. Thus saith the Lord; I am returned unto Zion, and will dwell in the midst of Jerusalem: and Jerusalem shall be called a city of truth; and the mountain of the Lord of hosts the holy mountain (Zech.8:2-3). Hallelujah! The Lord Is There forever in His Redeemed, the HOLY CITY, NEW JERUSALEM And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the Temple of It (Rev.21:22).
As we have realized, the Holy City, New Jerusalem is the Redeemed People of all ages since the time of Adam right up to the end of the Great White Throne Judgement. And all these Redeemed People have Glorified Bodies. Just as a bride is prepared for her husband, so are the Redeemed also beautifully prepared from the very beginning of time to be the Spiritual Tabernacle of God. Now, this is the very city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God that Abraham, the Father of our Faith was looking for. It will be completed after the Great White Throne Judgement. And after the New Heaven and New Earth are created, God will set the Holy City upon the New Earth.
Hence, the Heavenly New Jerusalem, the Wife of the Lamb of God, the Tabernacle of God is the House (the Abode) of God! Amen. Through her the Almighty God will live among the natural people in the New Earth and be their God; and there will be no more sorrow, crying, pain or death.
At this juncture, let me stress an important point concerning the FAITH-relationship of the Chosen and Redeemed People of God with God, their Redeemer. As a nation of chosen people, Israel was considered a Bride of the Lord (Isa.62:5; Jer.3:8,14). In the Gospel Dispensation, the Christians (the Church and Body of Christ) are also a Bride of the Lord. Both were united as one in the Cross of Jesus Christ. Read Ephesians 2-3. The building and making of the Holy City, New Jerusalem, the (Bride-)Wife of the Lord, began when THE SURE FOUNDATION STONE was laid upon the Cross at Calvary. However, the houses in this New Jerusalem are set up in stages. (Remember that this Holy City will appear only in the Eternal Age of the New Heaven and New Earth, and not before that. It will not even be found in the Age of Regeneration.) All those who are to be redeemed and given Glorified Bodies, whether they lived before or after the Cross, are the called-out ones known by different names: Disciples of Jesus, Church, Body of Christ, Elect, Chosen, Saints, Beloved of God, etc. However, because Adam and Eve were set in the Garden of Eden as a type of Christ and the Redeemed, the term Bride of Christ, or the Lamb's Wife, is most suitably used to describe the relationship.
Now, the focus of any (ancient) city is the palace of its king. In this case, it is the Temple and Tabernacle. Therefore, the Temple (Grk: naos, sanctuary proper) must be built first followed by the Tabernacle (Grk: skene, the whole building). Then, other houses are built around it (cf. Num.2). Thus, according to Saint Paul, even the resurrection of the saints will take place in phases: But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming (1 Cor.15:23; cf. Rom.12:4; Rev.14:4). Now notice: prior to his visions of the Holy City (in Revelation 21), the Apostle John did not see the Holy City in Heaven. However, he did see the most important building of that Holy City in Heaven the Temple of the Tabernacle of God (Rev.11:19a; 15:5,8a). This points to Christ (the Temple) being in the Redeemed (the Tabernacle) in Heaven. But this group of the Redeemed are only the firstfruits of Christ who are harvested out of the field of the world, for they are one with THE WORD in their days. For if the firstfruit be holy, the lump is also holy: and if the root be holy, so are the branches (Rom.11:16). These are the chosen members of His Body who heard what the Spirit of the Lord had said in their days. They believed and received the Promised Word of God. They are the Spirit-filled ones. We can say that they are the wise believers of every age who lived and walked in the Word all the way. They are truly one with the Word, and the Glory of the Lord God is in them. Hence, they are the only group of people who will be given fine linen, clean and white upon their resurrection to attend the Grand Marriage Supper of the Lamb in Heaven.
Verse 11: Having the glory of God: and her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal;
As foreshadowed in the Tabernacle of Moses and the Temple of Solomon, the Holy City, New Jerusalem will also have the Glory of God in her. The Glory of God is the Word of God. And It is given unto her for a covering. Yes, Christ the Word is given unto the Saints for a Covering, a Defence and a Protection. Her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal signifies that there is no flaw, defilement, evil, or spot of any kind in the Lamb's Wife. Obviously, because she is One with the Word. She has received the Seed of the Word and is Fruitful. Moreover, her light is as clear as crystal which penetrates deep into the recesses of her soul and spirit (cf. Heb.4:12). She is beautiful, precious, valuable and attractive in the eyes of her Lord, Master and God.
Verse 12: And had a wall great and high, and had twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels, and names written thereon, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel:
Verse 13: On the east three gates; on the north three gates; on the south three gates; and on the west three gates.
Verse 14: And the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and in them the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.
Verse 15: And he that talked with me had a golden reed to measure the city, and the gates thereof, and the wall thereof.
Verse 16: And the city lieth foursquare, and the length is as large as the breadth: and he measured the city with the reed, twelve thousand furlongs. The length and the breadth and the height of it are equal.
Verse 17: And he measured the wall thereof, an hundred and forty and four cubits, according to the measure of a man, that is, of the angel.
The great and high wall of any literal city is built to protect its people from any attack by the enemy as well as to keep the enemy out. Spiritually, this typifies the Lamb's Wife having God's Covering, Defence and Protection within the wall, and the unclean are kept outside the wall of the Holy City of God Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie (Rev.22:14-15). In the Old Testament we see how important it was for Moses to make and do everything according to the pattern which was shown to him on the mountain (Ex.25:40; Heb.8:5). The layout of the camp of Israel, as recorded in Numbers 2, shows the strength and the protection surrounding the heart of the people the Tabernacle of God. There were four sides east, south, west and north and an ensign on each side. There are four Gospel books in the New Testament Matthew, Mark, Luke and John; and there are four Living Creatures guarding the Gospel Truth Lion, Ox, Man and Flying Eagle as they surround the Throne of God. All these typify the Holy City, New Jerusalem which is guarded by twelve ministering angels, three on each of its four sides.
A golden reed was used to measure the City, the gates and the wall. The golden reed was God's divine yardstick of flawless perfection without stain of sin, without deceit, and without misrepresentation. This was how God built His Holy City for Himself to dwell in. What God had ordained, He would carry it out precisely. Now, the wall measured 144 cubits. The number 144 is the amplification of the number 12; 12 times 12 is equal to 144. And the number 12 is an extremely significant number in the Scriptures. It is the number of the chosen ones in relation to governmental perfection. In the Old Testament, God called the descendants of Abraham, Israel, as a chosen nation of people. In the New Testament, He called sinners, both Jews and Gentiles, to repentance at the Cross of Christ that they might be a chosen body of people the Church. We find 12 Princes (for there were 12 tribes of Israel) and 12 chosen Apostles who were the foundations of the Church. There are 12 gates on the wall around the City with the names of the 12 tribes inscribed on them. There are 3 gates on each of the four sides; east, south, west and north, signifying that the Redeemed Saints are gathered from all the four corners of this present earth. But the names of the tribes are not specifically indicated on these gates as they were on the gates of the future (literal) city of Jerusalem in the Age of Regeneration (Ezek.48:31-34). This is another fact which proves that the Holy City, New Jerusalem is not a literal city with literal gates. The 12 gates point to the 12 principalities (the authority of the princes) of Israel, for it was unto the children of Israel that the Oracles Of God were committed (Acts 7:38; Rom.3:1-2). The Word was brought to them through God's prophets. To be a part of this Holy City, one must enter through its gates for there is no other way to get into God's House, God's Family. The 12 tribes of Israel possessed THE WORD. Then the 12 Apostles, who were all Jews, was each given a special Stone for the works they were ordained to do. Being a part of the Rock of Ages, they had the 'Rock of Revelation' concerning Christ Jesus Who was the Mystery of God revealed to the world. Their Stones were strong and solid. Their revelations of THE WORD were true. And their Stones formed the foundations (or footings) of the Holy City. (The 12 foundational stones were set in such a manner that there was one each between the three gates of each wall and the four corners. Hence, the interwoven relationship between the Old and the New Testaments; that is, one cannot stand without the other. [Note: The 12 foundations are not 12 layers of rocks laid one on top of another. Read 1 Peter 2:3-8.]) Upon these foundations more houses were built in the Holy City and God's Family was enlarged. Nothing could tear away their foundations. They could not be destroyed. Their Apostolic revelations of the Oracles of God were secured to the One Sure Foundation Stone Christ the Word, the Rock of Ages! (Isa.28:16). Hence, the number 144, being the amplification of the number 12, signifies that the Elect of God (the Holy City) have the Oracles of God, which were first given to the 12 tribes of Israel, and also the foundations of the 12 Apostles. Consider the the breast-plate of the Urim and the Thummim, worn by the High Priest, which was so designed with four rows of precious stones with three stones mounted on each row and the name of each of the twelve tribes was engraved on each stone (cf. Exod.28:15-21,30). This shows that the Elect of God have the Apostolic Foundation of the Prophetic Word. Amen.
Prophet Isaiah had a glimpse of this great eternal city when he prophesied of The city of the LORD, The Zion of the Holy One of Israel (Isa.60:14): Violence shall no more be heard in thy land, wasting nor destruction within thy borders; but thou shalt call thy walls Salvation, and thy gates Praise. The sun shall be no more thy light by day; neither for brightness shall the moon give light unto thee: but the LORD shall be unto thee an everlasting light, and thy God thy glory. Thy sun shall no more go down; neither shall thy moon withdraw itself: for the LORD shall be thine everlasting light, and the days of thy mourning shall be ended (Isa.60:18-20).
[Note: Some preachers are teaching that there is a 13th foundation in the New Jerusalem. They say that the Apostle Paul, whom they call 'the 13th Apostle', built it exclusively for the Gentile Bride who is placed in a higher realm than the rest in the Holy City. Beloved, believe the Word there are only twelve foundations, not thirteen. The Apostle Paul, who was born out of due season, was chosen to lay a (not the) foundation. Like the other apostles he took the Gospel to the Jews who rejected it and God then sent him to give it to the Gentiles. Had the Jews received the words of Paul, they would have received the same blessings that the Gentiles believers have today. That's right because there is ONLY ONE GOSPEL. Paul took the place of Judas Iscariot, who betrayed Christ. Although Matthias was numbered with the eleven apostles (Acts 1:26) he was not the twelfth. He was not chosen directly by our Lord Jesus Christ but rather by a ballot cast by the eleven apostles who felt the need to fill the 'vacancy'.]
That the Holy City, New Jerusalem is perfect and chosen of God is again shown by the number 12 in the measurement of the City, which lieth foursquare, that is, the length and the breadth are equal, 12,000 furlongs by 12,000 furlongs. The height is also 12,000 furlongs. [Note: The word foursquare does not include the measurement of height. Many Christians believe otherwise because of the second statement in Revelation 21:16. Hence, they believe that the Holy City is shaped like a cube and give the interpretation that it is thus complete and perfect in God. However, observe what is stated in the first statement: And the city lieth foursquare, and the length is as large as the breadth, that is, the City has four equal sides and is square in shape. The word foursquare means four sides equal and square in shape. It does not mean a cube. See Exodus 30:2; 37:25; 39:8-9.] In Bible numerology, the number 3 denotes completeness, whereas the number 4 denotes the earth. Hence, the uniform measurement of length, breadth and height speaks of completeness, and the four equal sides show us that the Lamb's Wife is redeemed out of the four corners of the earth. (Remember the one river which split into four heads after leaving the Garden of Eden and flowed out into all the earth?)
Now, what does the measurement of height of this City tell us? Simply this: the Holy City, New Jerusalem is not a literal city! Have we ever been told of the height of any city in the world? The size of a city is only measured by the surface area which it occupies. You just don't measure its height; if you do, how will you measure it? The tallest building? (If so, to what purpose does it serve?) And since the New Jerusalem is 12,000 furlongs (about 1,500 miles or 2,200 kilometres) high, is the measurement that of the tallest building? Of course not! Therefore, the dimension of its length, breadth and height is to show us the volume of its size, giving us an idea of the large number of people who are predestinated to be redeemed and clothed with Glorified Bodies. (Notice the number of times that the number 12,000 is used 3 times 12,000. This tells us of the completeness of the Holy City and the perfection of God's control, rule or government.) However, for those who insist that the Holy City is a literal city which looks like a cube, and that it will either replace the city of Jerusalem or hang over it, consider the size of the City: 12,000 furlongs by 12,000 furlongs (or 1,500 miles by 1,500 miles). The city of Jerusalem in Biblical time was about 1¼ miles by 1 mile. Today it is approximately 7 miles by 6 miles. In the Age of Regeneration, the city will measure 12 miles by 12 miles. If the Holy City, in the New Heaven and New Earth, is a literal city, how will it fit into the locality of the Land of Israel? Of course it will not because the actual boundary of the land will no longer exist in the New Earth. That ought to tell us something. Then again, what about the height of the City? With its height of about 1,500 miles, some 500 miles of it will be sticking out of the earth's atmosphere. And would the throne of God and of the Lamb (Rev.22:1) be somewhere in that highest area of the City? Beloved, do not forget that the natural people in the New Earth will not have supernatural bodies. They will be like Adam and Eve before their fall. They will need oxygen to breathe and live. (Without special equipment, breathing is already impossible even at an altitude of 10 miles or 14½ kilometres. Air thins out as the altitude increases.) Hence, how are they going to approach the Throne of the Lord in that great height? Now, some of you may be childish enough to think that God could do this or do that to make things possible, like increasing the height of the atmosphere. Yes, that is possible, but God does not change His mind about His ordained order of His creations which He had already created in perfectly good condition and order as recorded in the Book of Genesis. Every star, every planet and everything in the whole universe had been perfectly set on course with its weight and volume perfectly measured out (Job 28:24-27; Isa.40:12). God never makes mistakes. He's a Great Scientist. Therefore, God does not have to alter the weight and volume of anything which He had already created upon the earth.
Now, in a given dimension of any city there is no measurement of its height. The height of the Holy City, New Jerusalem is given to draw our attention to the shape of the Pyramid. Now, the Pyramid is the only structure that has a Headstone besides the Cornerstone. The Headstone is the 'Capping Stone' (or Capstone) on the top of the Pyramid. The Great Pyramid of Giza was never capped with its Headstone. [According to Pyramidologists, some of the descendants of Seth, probably in the generation of Enoch, who migrated to Egypt and were called the 'shepherd kings' by the Egyptians, were the builders of the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt. It was not built to be used as a tomb. (The Egyptians later copied the structure and built pyramids for the purposes of worship and entombment of their dead Pharaohs.) They believe that the Great Pyramid contains the Gospel of God in stones. The detailed structures inside that pyramid tell the 'Gospel Story' of the Prince of Darkness and his Bottomless Pit, of the Fall of Mankind, of the Call of a Chosen People, Israel, being the Queen of the One Who has chosen her, of the Law Age, of the Grace (Gospel) Age, of the Risen King, of His Coming Judgement, etc. The four equal sides of the Great Pyramid were originally covered with casing stones which reflected the light of the sun like polished glass.]
Consider these Scriptures: Therefore thus saith the Lord God, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste (Isa.28:16); Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded. Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner, And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed (1 Pet.2:6-8 cf. Psm.118:22; Matt.21:42; Isa.8:14); Who art thou, O great mountain? before Zerubbabel thou shalt become a plain: and he shall bring forth the headstone thereof with shoutings, crying, Grace, grace unto it (Zec.4:7).
Architecturally the 'Capstone' on the top of the Pyramid is the only corner stone which binds together all the other corners as well as the walls of the whole structure. Hence, the Head of the corner and the Chief corner stone. Christ Jesus is not just the Foundational Corner Stone, He is also the Head Stone. (The word chief corner stone is akrogoniaios in Greek, where akron means the highest, extreme, tip, top, uttermost part and gonia means corner, angle.) It is in this Rock that we as lively stones are built as a habitation of God. He is the One Who binds our lives together as a whole: And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit (Eph.2:20-22). Yes, the Stone has become a great and high Mountain (cf. Dan.2). [Notice that a mountain looks like a pyramid, and not a cube. A pyramidal frame is structurally very stable. It cannot be pushed or moved out of shape. A cubical frame is not so. If one of its sides is pushed it will no longer be a cube.]
The Divine Rules and the Echelon of Authorities
When we think of the Holy City, New Jerusalem in the shape of the PYRAMID, we will begin to understand the mystery of God Himself. The Word of God is the pivotal point in which all things evolve and consist, and It is hidden in God Himself (Jhn.1:1-4). And He chose to reveal the Mystery of the Hidden Word in His Only Begotten Son, the Lord Jesus Christ (Col.1:15-19). Christ the Lord is God's conception of His ultimate intention to dwell in a Tabernacle of Spiritual People as well as to dwell with a natural people upon the earth. God wants a House and a Family. And it is in and through the Headstone that He seeks to bring about that House and Family for Himself.
The pyramidal structure is certainly the great archetype of the finished Holy City and is symbolic of our Lord and His Wife as the government of the New Earth. We cannot help but recognize that Yahweh, the Founder and Builder, had designed and ordained the divine set of rules and echelon of authorities within His Holy City, New Jerusalem. All the saints of God will be rewarded and ranked in positional order as predestinated by the foreknowledge of God. For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office (Rom.12:4). Basically, all the saints will each be ranked according to his or her standing with THE WORD of God and each of them will have to give an account of himself or herself to God (Matt.18:23; Rom.14:12; 1 Cor.3:8,11-15; Rev.22:12). Hence, what do we see within the rules and echelon of authorities? At the Apex of the pyramidal echelon is Christ, the Head Stone. He is the Peak of the great and high mountain. And together with the natural people upon the New Earth, we must all look up to Him with reverence, for by Him the earth will be redeemed unto the Father. The next level below the Peak will be the Four and Twenty Elders followed by the 'First Class' Saints the Church of the Firstborn of each Church Age. Obviously the Foolish Virgins and the Faithful Jews, who died for their faith in the Great Tribulation, will be in the next level in the echelon. Those in the General Assembly who will be given Eternal Life at the Great White Throne Judgement in the Second Resurrection will occupy the lowest level in the echelon.
The Beautiful City of God
Verse 18: And the building of the wall of it was of jasper: and the city was pure gold, like unto clear glass.
Verse 19: And the foundations of the wall of the city were garnished with all manner of precious stones. The first foundation was jasper; the second, sapphire; the third, a chalcedony; the fourth, an emerald;
Verse 20: The fifth, sardonyx; the sixth, sardius; the seventh, chrysolite; the eighth, beryl; the ninth, a topaz; the tenth, a chrysoprasus; the eleventh, a jacinth; the twelfth, an amethyst.
Verse 21: And the twelve gates were twelve pearls: every several gate was of one pearl: and the street of the city was pure gold, as it were transparent glass.
Truly, the beauty of the Holy City of God is beyond description. Its true spiritual beauty can only be felt and understood by the inner man. Hence, beautiful and precious substances are used to describe the Holy City. The Holy City is built perfectly according to the Heavenly Pattern in the Mind of God, and there is no flaw in the Wife of the Lamb (vv.9,15-17, cf. Deut.32:4; 2 Chr.8:16; Heb.13:21) for she was foreknown of God and predestinated as such (cf. Eph.1; Heb.4:3).
Notice that the wall is of jasper. Pure jasper stone is translucent or even transparent and clear. It reflects the saints of God as having a flawless covering of the Holy Spirit of the Lord; their lives are like open books to be read of all men. There is nothing in the lives of the saints that needs to be hidden from the eyes of the world. Even the City is of pure gold, like unto clear glass which means that she has been purged of all the dross through fiery trials until she is as clear as glass (cf. 1 Cor.3:11-17; 1 Pet.1:7; 2:5). Yes, it is divinity in the redeemed. She is perfect in all her faith. And with the Glory of God, which is THE WORD, the Light shining in and through her will surely blend together as One Clear Light (cf. Rev.21:11). Notice also that the street of the city was pure gold, as it were transparent glass. This is exactly the kind of street upon which the saints should be walking in their present lives and upon which they shall continue to walk in the New Earth. Since time immemorial, the Only (One) Way to the Heavenly Father has been through the One Who is The Way, The Truth, and The Life.
Pure precious stones are produced by a process of tremendous pressure, heat and other elements. The brightness and beauty of the twelve different foundation stones of various colours of red, purple, blue, white, green and golden yellow reflect the heavenly and holy characters of the saints, who have been purchased by the precious blood of the Son of God, their eternal praises and divine blessings. And these are the (REVELATION OF) TRUTHS which their Apostolic Fathers had taught and even laid down their lives for them. Hence, each of the twelve stones exemplifies the beauty and splendor of the sacrificial life of that Apostle.
Pearl symbolizes suffering under pressure produced by 'irritants'. The twelve gates, being twelve pearls, which represent the twelve princes of Israel, who had undergone many sufferings as they bore the Name and the Word of Yahweh until the appointed time when they shall bring forth the Manchild of the Lord, their Messiah. They suffered many afflictions brought upon them by the Adversary of God of the nations round about them. Under such conditions, they had become precious and priceless pearls in God's sight. Yes, God will always bring out the best in His people through the 'irritants' of trials and sufferings inflicted upon them by the enemies.
The Temple of the Holy City
Verse 22: And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it.
Moses, the Deliverer of the children of Israel, was divinely instructed by the Almighty God to build the Tabernacle according to the pattern shown to him on the mountain (Ex.25:40; Heb.8:5). From the simple Tabernacle of Moses, it grew in stature through the ages in the form of the Temple of Solomon and the coming Temple in the Millennial Reign of Christ. All these reflected the Glory of God in Christ Jesus and in the Saints, thus fulfilling the True Tabernacle, THE HOLY CITY, NEW JERUSALEM, that was in the Mind of God before the foundation of the world was laid. Hence, Apostle John saw no Temple other than the Temple that was Christ Jesus, the Lamb of God! Christ is the Temple of God. God and Christ are One. Amen! The Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of the Holy City, New Jerusalem (cf. Jhn.17:20-26). The Temple within the Holy City, New Jerusalem shows us the perfect oneness of Christ and His Redeemed.
Verse 23: And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof.
Although the sun, the moon and the stars are there, the Glorified Saints the Holy City, New Jerusalem do not need their light, for the Lamb of God, the Word of God, the Pillar of Fire, is her Light. God is Light (1 Jhn.1:5). He dwells in Light (1 Tim.6:16). (Up to this point in our study, we should be convinced by the revelation of the Word that the Holy City, New Jerusalem is definitely not a literal city in a specific location but refers to the Glorified Saints whom the Lord God dwells in. A truly spiritual saint could not be so blind to see it otherwise.) The glory of God is the Word of God, and the Word is tabernacled in the Lamb who is the Temple of the Holy City. In Him was life; and the life was the light of men That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world (Jhn.1:4,9 cf. 8:12; Isa.60:19; Psm.36:9).
Verse 24: And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it.
During the Millennial Reign of Christ, known as the Age of Regeneration (Matt.19:28), the population of the earth will be replenished with the descendants of the nations of sheep people (Matt.25:31-46). These people will have to obey the Law and the Word of the Lord for their cleansing and 'de-hybridizing' of their fallen nature (cf. Psm.119:9; Jhn.15:3). Immediately after that period of one thousand years, Satan will be released from his prison to test the loyalty of the people who, up till then, have yet to face any testing, trial or temptation in their lives. Many will reject the Law and the Word of God and will join Satan in his rebellion against God, thus ending up in the Lake of Fire (Rev.20:7-10). The remnant of the nations of people who will remain loyal to the Lord's Christ shall be saved from the evil seduction of Satan. By holding fast to the Word, they show that the fallen nature of their souls have been thoroughly purged and 'de-hybridized'. And they shall walk by the precious Light which illuminates from THE TABERNACLE OF GOD, THE HOLY CITY, which is the GLORIFIED SAINTS, who will be placed throughout the New Earth. It is a Spiritual City the HOLY MOUNTAIN OF GOD into which the nations of the earth will bring their glory and honor (praises) through the gates (cf. Isa.60:18b).
Verse 25: And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day: for there shall be no night there.
Verse 26: And they shall bring the glory and honour of the nations into it.
Truly, unlike the city of Jerusalem whose gates had to be shut at night to protect its inhabitants, the gates of the New Jerusalem need never be shut as there will be no night (darkness) in her. The Holy City will be full of the Light of the Glory of God radiated from the Glorified Saints. And wherever the Glorified Saints are placed on the New Earth, the Light of Life in them will radiate out spontaneously to all the inhabitants around them. Through the gates (the authority of the Word) the national rulers (or leaders) of the earth shall bring adoration, praise, splendor, reverence, tribute, homage, and etc, of their nations to the Holy City. Unlike the worshippers in the days of old, the nations of people of the New Earth will have no need to travel great distances, no sacrifices to make, no inner sanctuary to approach and no veil between them and God because God Himself will be present in His Holy Tabernacle of Saints to dwell among the people.
Verse 27: And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb's book of life.
This verse is only a retrospective reflection since all evils will have been destroyed by the time the New Jerusalem is complete. Without a shadow of doubt, the Holy City, New Jerusalem is the Holy and Glorified Wife of the Lamb! She is the Everlasting Father's House, and no sin can enter into her nor be found in her, for all sinners shall have been cast into the Lake of Fire. To become a citizen and be a part of the Holy City, one has to receive the Word and be born again during the Gospel Age. Once that age is over, those who survive the Great Tribulation and are judged as the sheep will be given life to repopulate the earth in the Age of Regeneration (Matt.25: 31-46 cf. Rev.13:8). Out of that period of one thousand years of regeneration only those people whose names are found in the Book of Life will be saved. And these natural people who are purged and sanctified by the Word will have the right to enter into the Holy City, and they shall bring into it the glory and honour of their nations. However, they will not have the right to be citizens of the City.
Christ Jesus, the last Adam, Who being God and Man, came to fulfill the Redemption Plan of God and to gather a Spiritual Glorified Family of Sons and Daughters of God unto the Heavenly Father. He also came to redeem the Earth and to restore it to its original state, as it was in the beginning, for a Natural People like the first Adam. The Gospel Age is a part of God's Great Eternal Plan by which He would call, justify, and glorify a people whom He had foreknown before the foundation of the world (Rom.8:30). The Everlasting Father had predestinated these people to be the children of His Glorious Family and that they be clothed with a spiritual body like that of His Only Begotten Son which radiates brilliantly the glory of the Lord. On the other hand, a small number of the natural people, who will live in the Age of Regeneration and not be deceived by Satan when he is released from his bondage after a thousand years, will be restored back to the state of that first man, Adam, who in his original natural body would have lived forever if he had not sinned. Though they will not be a part of God's Glorified Family of sons and daughters, they will still be His people and God will be their God. As God dwells with a natural people upon the New Earth in the Eternal Age, the Glory of the spiritual Lamb's Wife, who is the Tabernacle of God, the Holy City, New Jerusalem, will be manifested. Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself shall be with them, and be their God (Rev.21:3).
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Revelation Chapter 22
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