Rev 21:1. Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea.
The fire that came down from God (Rev 20:9) to destroy the wicked was also used to cleanse the earth from the results of sin.
2 Peter 3:10. But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up.
The heavens will pass away would mean the part of the Milky Way galaxy which has been affected by sin e.g. rockets and satellites etc.
Rev 21:1. Also there was no more sea.
“The sea divides friends. It is a barrier between us and those whom we love. Our associations are broken up by the broad, fathomless ocean. In the new earth there will be no more sea – – -. Thank God, in the earth made new there will be no fierce torrents, no engulfing ocean, no restless, murmuring waves.”
Rev 21:2. Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
How many times does the New Jerusalem come down to this earth after the 1,000 years?
“While the earth was wrapped in the fire of destruction, the righteous abode safely in the Holy City. Upon those that had part in the first resurrection, the second death has no power. While God is to the wicked a consuming fire, he is to his people both a sun and a shield.”
So the Holy City the New Jerusalem only comes down once to this earth even though the texts imply there are other instances e.g. Rev 20:9. 21:2. 21:10.
The question arises: Is Christ married to the city of the New Jerusalem or to the people who are in it?
There are texts from the Bible that reveal believers are married to Christ when they believe in him as their personal saviour. Fx:
Isaiah 54:5. For your Maker is your husband, the Lord of Host is his name; and your redeemer is the Holy One of Israel; he is called the God of the whole earth.
Isaiah 62:5. For as a young man marries a virgin, so shall your sons marry you; and as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so shall your God rejoice over you.
Jeremiah 3:14. “Return, O backsliding children,” says the Lord; “for I am married to you. I will take you, one from a city and two from a family, and I will bring you to Zion.”
Ezekiel 16:7.8. “I made you thrive like a plant in the field; and you grew matured, and became very beautiful, your breasts were formed, your hair grew, but you were naked and bare. When I passed by you again and looked upon you, your time was the time of love; so I spread my wings over you and covered your nakedness. Yes, I swore an oath to you and entered into a covenant with you, and you became mine,” says the Lord God.
Hosea 2:16. “And it shall be, in that day,” says the Lord, “that you will call me `my husband,` and no longer call me `my master,`”
Ephesians 5:25. Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave himself for her.
From the texts above we can see that the people of God are married to God when they give their hearts to him and experience the new birth of a Christian.
There are texts that reveal Christ is married to the city of the New Jerusalem. Fx:
Rev 21:2, Then I, John saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
Rev 21:9.10. Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls filled with the seven last plagues came to me and talked to me, saying, “Come, I will show you the bride, the Lamb´s wife.” And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and he showed me the great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God.
Rev 19:7.8. Let us be glad and rejoice and give him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and his wife has made herself ready. And to her it was granted to be arranged in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.
Rev 19:9. Then he said to me, “Write: `Blessed are those who are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb!` ”
“The marriage represents the reception by Christ of his kingdom. The Holy City, the New Jerusalem, which is the capital and representative of the kingdom, is called the bride, and the Lamb´s wife.”
“Clearly, then, the bride represents the Holy City, and the virgins that go out to meet the bridegroom are symbols of the Church. In the book Revelation the people of God are said to be guests at the marriage supper. Rev 19:9. If guests, they cannot be represented also as the bride.”
It seems like from the texts mentioned that Christ is first married to the believers who accept him as their savior, then they become guests at the marriage of Christ with the new city of Jerusalem.
Rev 21:3. And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, “Behold the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people. God himself will be with them and be their God.”
In this text God mentions the tabernacle and dwelling amongst his people as in Exodus 25:8. And let them make me a sanctuary that I may dwell among them. The words sanctuary and tabernacle are similar in these texts. However, tabernacle in Rev 21:3 is equal to Gods presence e.g. the tabernacle of God is with men. Rev 21:22. But I saw no temple in it, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. When the text in Rev 21:3 says he will dwell with them, it is also an echo of the text in 2 Peter 1:3.4. As his divine power given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us by glory and virtue, by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature.
God dwells in us through his divine nature by the Holy Spirit. Fx:
John 3:5. Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.”
1 Corinthians 6:19. Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own?
John 14:17. The Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him; but you know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you.
Rev 21:4. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes, there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.
Our adversary the devil and his angels together with the wicked which are the cause of much pain, suffering and sorrow have ceased to exist. In heaven we will be surrounded by our loved ones governed by one law and that is love to God and to our neighbour. There is no death because we will come to live for eternity together with God.
Rev 21:5-7. Then he who sat on the throne said, “Behold, I will make all things new.” And he said to me, “Write, for these words are true and faithful.” And he said to me, “It is done! I am Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End. I will give of the fountain of water of life freely to him who thirsts. He who overcomes shall be my son.”
He who sat upon the throne is Jesus Christ. Rev 20:11.
What do the words Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End, mean?
Alpha is the first letter of the Greek alphabet and Omega is the last letter of the Greek alphabet. This expression is also used for Christ in Re 1:8.11. In relation to the context in Rev 21:5-7 this expression Alpha and Omega refers to Christ making all things new on the new earth. It is a new beginning with believers drinking from the water of life on a daily basis. This expression refers to a new heaven and a new earth, and living in the new Jerusalem with Christ.
Rev 21:8. But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murders, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake of fire which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.
There are many preachers from many denominations who preach that these people who practice these evil things come to heaven. The text in Rev 21:8 says the opposite.
Rev 21:9. Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls filled with the seven last plagues came to me and talked with me saying, “Come, I will show you the bride, the Lamb´s wife.”
We must remember that John the disciple is having a vision in this chapter and in this vision, he is talking with one of the angels who had the bowls of the seven last plagues. The bride is the New Jerusalem. The Lamb refers to Jesus Christ.
Rev 21:10.11. And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me the great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, having the glory of God. Her light was like a most precious stone, like jasper stone, clear as crystal.
This event takes place before Rev 20:9 when Satan and all the wicked surround the beloved city, the New Jerusalem.
Rev 21:12.13. Also she had a great high wall with twelve gates, and twelve angels at the gates, and names written on them, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel: three gates on the east, three gates on the north, three gates on the south, and three gates on the west.
Why does this text start with from the east and not from the north like we are taught in our educational system?
It is for the same reason the holy temple entrance was made pointing to the east. Ezekiel 11:1. The east is where Christ will come from at his Second Coming to this earth. Math 24:27.
Why the names of the twelve tribes of Israel only, and not converted believers in Christ?
It is because all converted believers who have been Gentiles become spiritual Israel when they are born a new:
Rom 2:29. But he is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the hearth, in the Spirit, not in the letter; whose praise is not from men but from God.
James 1:1. James, a bondservant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad: Greetings.
These twelve tribes are the 12 spiritual tribes of Israel scattered abroad, because the ten physical tribes of Israel were taken from their country by the Assyrians and intermarried with the Assyrians, never to be heard of again. (For a more detailed study see my website www.ayindk.com The 144,000).
Rev 21:14. Now the wall of the city had twelve apostles of the Lamb.
Who are the twelve apostles?
Acts 1:13. Peter, James, John, and Andrew; Philip and Thomas; Bartholomew and Mathew; James the son of Alphaeus and Simon the Zealot; and Judas the son of James.
Acts 1:25.26. To take part in this ministry and apostleship from which Judas by transgression fell, that he might go to his own place. They cast lots, and the lot fell on Matthias. And he was numbered with the eleven apostles.
Rev 21:15.16. And he who talked with me had a gold reed to measure the city, its gates, and its wall. The city is laid out as a square; its length is as great as its breadth. And he measured the city with the reed: twelve thousand furlongs. Its length, breadth, and height are equal.
When one goes after these measurements then the city is designed to be a perfect cube. Why? A Russian inventor on the internet made a transformer designed to be like a perfect cube to give free electricity. Maybe this design gives free electricity in the New Jerusalem. Hence, I am only speculating.
As regards to the measurements twelve thousand furlongs: one furlong = 185 meters (606 feet 6 inches), 12,000 furlongs = 2,218 kilometres (1,378.4 miles)
This measurement is about the same length as halfway from New York to San Francisco. The height would be the same as the length. Why?
This cube design was also used in the making of the Most Holy Place in the sanctuary.
1 Kings 6:20.22. The inner sanctuary was twenty cubits long, twenty cubits wide, and twenty cubits high. He overlaid it with pure gold – – -. The whole temple he (Solomon) overlaid with gold, until he had finished all the temple; also he overlaid with gold the entire altar that was in the inner sanctuary.
The Most Holy Place was the dwelling place of the shekinar glory: the cloud which led the Israelites in the wilderness for 40 years. That same cloud came down to the sanctuary and rested over the ark of the covenant containing the Ten Commandments. Exodus 40:34-38. Leviticus 16:2. This was the presence of the Lord God Almighty. His law of love will be guidance in the new earth.
The same will be in the New Jerusalem. God´s presence will be in the centre of the cube shaped Jerusalem. This will be the centre of the whole universe containing millions and millions of galaxies.
So the inner sanctuary, the Most Holy of Holies was built like a perfect cube. All the sides were equal and perfect. The height would reveal that the walls would be impregnable a symbol of God´s 100% protection. In Rev 20:9 Satan and all the wicked on the earth after the second resurrection surround the beloved city the New Jerusalem which came down from heaven. Satan´s plan was to attack the city and overtake it. However, this was impossible because the walls of the city were so high that they were unable to penetrate it. Although there is no enemy on the new earth, the walls stand as a symbol of God´s 100% protection. Furthermore, the size of the city would have to be large enough to house all the millions of saints who have died since the time of Adam. There would be skyscrapers there towering up to heaven.
Rev 21:17. Then he measured its walls: one hundred and forty-four cubits, according to the measure of a man, that is, of an angel.
1 cubit =17½ inches or 44.5 cm.
144 cubits = 210 feet or 64 meters.
Now if the height of the city is equal to the length and breadth. Then these 144 cubits would be the measurement of the thickness of the walls.
Rev 21:18. The construction of its wall was jasper; and the city was pure gold, like clear glass.
Jasper in the Greek is ίασπίς and is not like the jasper stone as we know it today. Pliny the naturalist says it was translucent. That is, it is a stone letting light pass through it. (Natural History xxxvii).
Why is gold used in the construction of the city?
1 Peter 1:7. That the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honour, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ. (Gold is a symbol of our faith in God).
Rev 21:19.20. The foundations of the wall of the city were adorned with all kinds of precious stones: the first foundation was jasper, the second sapphire, the third chalcedony, the fourth emerald, the fifth sardonyx, the sixth sardius, the seventh chrysolite, the eighth beryl, the nineth topaz, the tenth chrysoprase, the eleventh jacinth, and the twelfth amethyst.
Most of these precious stones were fixed on the breastplate of the high priest in Exodus 28:17-21. And you shall put settings of stones in it, four rows of stones: The first row shall be a sardius, a topaz, and an emerald; this shall be the first row; the second row shall be a turquoise, a sapphire, and a diamond; the third row, a jacinth, an agate, and an amethyst; and the fourth row, a beryl, an onyx, and a jasper. They shall be set in gold settings. And the stones shall have the names of the sons of Israel, twelve according to their names – – – they shall be according to the twelve tribes.
Exodus 39:7. (Engraved stones on the ephod). He put them on the shoulders of the ephod as memorial stones for the sons of Israel, as the Lord had commanded Moses.
Now these stones on the High Priests` breastplate were not exactly the same as on the foundational walls of the New Jerusalem. This is because we are not sure that it is the right name. The LXX version of the Old Testament written in the Greek language by the Jews have changed some of the names of the precious stones on the High Priests` breastplate e.g., Exodus 28:17-20. There shall be a row of stones, a sardius, a topaz, an emerald, the first row. And the second row, a carbuncle, a sapphire, and a jasper. And the third row, a ligure (yellowish green in colour), an agate, an amethyst: and the fourth row, a chrysolite, and a beryl, and an onyx stone, set around with gold, bound together with gold.
What do precious stones represent?
1 Peter 2:4.5. Coming to him as to a living stone, rejected indeed by men, but chosen by God and precious, you also as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. (Stones her represent spiritual believers in Christ, a holy priesthood, a spiritual house, spiritual sacrifices).
Ezekiel 28:13. (The prince of tyre is a symbol of Satan). You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone was your covering: the sardius, topaz and diamond, beryl, onyx, and jasper, sapphire, turquoise and emerald withy gold. (Stones her represent faith and works).
1 Corinthians 3:12.13. Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each one´s work will become clear; for the day will declare it, because it will be rewarded by fire; and the fire will test each one´s work of what it is. (Precious stones represent works in this text).
Daniel 11:38. But in their place he shall honour a god of fortresses: and a god which his fathers did not know he shall honour with gold and silver, with precious stones and pleasant things. (Precious stones are related to works, faith and belief in another god substituting the sanctuary of God on earth e.g. the Roman Catholic system of forgiveness by priests in their church).
Precious stones are related to faith, names of the 12 tribes of Israel, as a memorial to the sons of Israel, living stones chosen by God, spiritual house, holy priesthood, faith and works.
Rev 21:21. The twelve gates were twelve pearls: each individual gate was of one pearl. And the street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass.
Why twelve gates?
The number twelve represents the twelve spiritual tribes of Israel who are believers in God. James 1:1.
Why were the gates made of pearls?
Mathew 13:45. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking beautiful pearls, who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had and brought it. (Peal is likened to the kingdom of heaven).
Why were the streets made og Gold?
1 Peter 1:7. That the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honour, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ. (Gold is a symbol of our faith in Jesus Christ).
Rev 21:22. But I saw no temple in it, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. (The temple in the Old Testament and in the New Testament Bible was used for the atonement of sins. However, in the heavenly Jerusalem the believers do not sin anymore; sin is eradicated and ceases to exist. The only remains of the temple are the Lord God Almighty, the Lamb and the Holy Spirit who will live in the midst of the 12 spiritual tribes of Israel. Exodus 25:8. Let them make me a sanctuary, that I may dwell among them.
Rev 21:23. The city had no need of the sun or of the moon to shine in it, for the glory of God illuminated it. The Lamb is its light.
Genesis 1:3. At creation God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. This light was not from the sun or the moon because they created on the fourth day. (Genesis 1:14-19). So this light on the first day would be similar to the light from the glory of God as in the new Jerusalem. In addition, the light from the glory of God was in the shekinah glory in the tabernacle over the arc containing the Ten Commandments. (Exodus 40:34-38). God´s glory of light was in the cloud of fire by night that gave light to the Israelites wandering in the wilderness for 40 years.
Rev 21:24. And the nations of those who are saved shall walk in its light, and the kings of the earth bring their glory and honour into it.
Who are the saved and the kings of the earth?
Rev 7:4. And I heard the number of those who were sealed. One hundred and forty-four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel were sealed.
Rev 7:9. After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could number, of all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues, standing before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, with psalm branches in their hands.
Rev 1:5.6. To him who loved and washed us from our sins in his own blood, and he has made us kings and priests to his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen!
Rev 21:25. Its gates shall not be shut at all by day, there shall be no night there.
Because Jesus Christ is our light from his glory, his presence will be with us 24 hours a day, and there shall be no darkness, just like the midnight sun in the northern hemisphere. The gates shall not be shut during the day because there is no enemy to attack the saints anymore.
Rev 21:26.27. But there shall by no means enter it anything that defile, or causes an abomination or lie, but only those who are written in the Lamb´s Book of Life.
How do we get our names written in the Lamb`s Book of Life?
First, who is the Lamb a symbol of in the book of Revelation?
John 1:29. The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.”
To get our names written in the book of life, we need to believe in Jesus Christ as our own personal saviour. Joh 3:16. We need to repent of our sins and be baptized with the adult baptism. Acts 2:38. Ask forgiveness of our sins and be born again as new Christians. Joh 3:1-7. This is a personal experience that can only be achieved through the Holy Spirit. On top of that, we need to practice Christianity by daily keeping all the ten commandments of God and the faith of Jesus. Rev 14:12. 12:17