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 Prophetic Times To The End Part Twenty-Eight

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PostSubject: Prophetic Times To The End Part Twenty-Eight   Tue Dec 18, 2012 1:53 am

Revelation 21

The new heaven and the new earth

The New Heaven And The New Earth Created

The opening verses of Rev_21:1-27 describe the creation of the new heaven and the new earth, which chronologically follows the thousand-year reign of Christ described in Rev_20:1-15. Rev_21:1-27 begins with the familiar words I saw, an expression repeated in Rev_21:2 (cf. Rev_21:22, “I did not see”). This new creation is described as a new heaven and a new earth. That it is a totally new heaven and a new earth, and not the present heaven and earth renovated, is supported by the additional statement, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away (also see comments on Rev_20:11). An amazingly small amount of information is given about the new heaven and the new earth. But one major fact is stated in this verse: there was no longer any sea.
In contrast with the present earth, which has most of its surface covered by water, no large body of water will be on the new earth. The Bible is silent, however, on any features of the first heaven except the statement in Rev_21:23 that there will be no sun or moon and, by implication, no stars. The new heaven refers not to the abode of God, but to the earth’s atmosphere and planetary space.
No landmarks whatever are given concerning the new earth, and nothing is known of its characteristics, vegetation, color, or form. The implication, however, is that it is round and is the residence of all who are saved. A few other references are found in Scripture in relation to the new earth, including Isa_65:17; Isa_66:22; and 2Pe_3:10-13.
Because in some of these passages the Millennium is also discussed, expositors have often confused the eternal state with the Millennium. However, the principle is well established in Scripture that distant events are often telescoped together. Examples of this are Isa_61:1-2 (cf. Luk_4:17-19), which speaks of the first and second comings of Christ together, and Dan_12:2, which mentions the resurrection of the righteous and of the wicked together even though, according to Rev_20:5, they will be separated by a thousand years. Sometimes even the chronological order is reversed, as in Isa_65:17-25 (Isa_65:17-19 refer to the new heaven and new earth whereas Isa_65:20-25 clearly refer to the Millennium). End-time events are all also brought in close proximity in 2Pe_3:10-13, where the beginning and the end of the day of the Lord are mentioned in the same passage.
Though expositors have differed on this point, the principle that clear passages should be used to explain obscure passages supports the conclusion that the second coming of Christ is followed by a thousand-year reign on earth, and this in turn is followed by a new heaven and new earth, the dwelling place of the saints for eternity. With the absence of any geographic identification and the absence of a sea, the new earth will obviously be entirely different. By contrast, the sea is mentioned many times in relation to the Millennium (e.g., Psa_72:8; Isa_11:9, Isa_11:11; Eze_47:8-20; Eze_48:28; Zec_9:10; Zec_14:Cool. The evidence is conclusive that the new heaven and new earth are not to be confused with the Millennium. 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. (2 Pet. 3 v.10)
"A new heaven and a new earth": The "new heaven" is the atmospheric heaven around and above the earth.
This area has been the domain of Satan (see Eph. 2: verse 2) and must be purified before the heaven of God can come down to the new earth. This new earth will be a perfect environment similar to that of the Garden of Eden. A unique distinction of this new earth will be that the vast oceans of water that now cover three fourths of the world's surface will not be included, leaving much more inhabitable land for the population of the redeemed.
This "new heaven and new earth" are actually a heavenly pattern of what the Garden of Eden was a miniature of on earth. We will see the Tree of Life restored with water that flows from the throne of God. It didn't rain in the Garden of Eden. Plants were watered from beneath the earth. The water in the Garden of Eden flowed out in four rivers (symbolic of enough for the whole world). This river that flows from the throne of God is the same water that Jesus told the woman at the well, if she drank it, she would never thirst again.
Revelation 21:2

The New Jerusalem Described

John’s attention was then directed to a specific feature of the new heaven and new earth, namely, the Holy City, the New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. The New Jerusalem is called “the Holy City,” in contrast with the earthly Jerusalem (which spiritually was compared to Sodom in Rev_11:Cool. As early as Rev_3:12 the New Jerusalem was described as “the city of My God, the New Jerusalem, which is coming down out of heaven from My God.” The fact that the New Jerusalem comes down from heaven and that it is not said to be created at this point has raised the question as to whether it has been in existence during the Millennium (see further discussion on this under Rev_21:9).
Many expositors regard the promise of Christ in Joh_14:2, “I am going there to prepare a place for you,” as referring to this city. The suggestion has been made that if the New Jerusalem is in existence during the millennial reign of Christ, it may have been suspended in the heavens as a dwelling place for resurrected and translated saints, who nevertheless would have immediate access to the earth to carry on their functions of ruling with Christ. In the Millennium the New Jerusalem clearly does not rest on the earth, for there is an earthly Jerusalem and an earthly temple (Ezek. 40-48).
Here, however, the New Jerusalem is described as it will be in the eternal state, and it is said to be “a bride beautifully dressed for her husband.” Because the church is pictured in Scripture as a bride (2Co_11:2), some have tried to identify the New Jerusalem’s inhabitants as specifically the church saints, excluding saints of other dispensations. However, the use of marriage as an illustration is common in Scripture, not only to relate Christ to the church but also Yahweh to Israel. Though the city is compared to a beautifully dressed bride, it actually is a city, not a person or group of people. Now John sees the new holy city which is not heaven, but is called that since everyone who will be in it is holy. This is Christ's Kingdom. "Blessed and holy is the one who has a part in the first resurrection." (20 v.6)
New Jerusalem will be coming down to the new heaven and new earth mentioned in verse 1. The old heaven and earth which was in chapter 20 verse 11 fled away and was no more.
The city is illustrated as a bride because it contains the bride and takes on her character. John saw the bride adorned for her husband because the time for the consummation had arrived. The concept of the bride includes not only the church, but all the rest of the redeemed from all the ages who will live forever in that eternal city.
1 Cor. 15 v.28 And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.
Revelation 21:3-4

Following this initial revelation of the New Jerusalem John wrote, I heard a loud voice from the throne. This is the last of 20 times that the expression “a loud voice” is used in Revelation (first used in Rev_5:2).
The final revelation from heaven states that God will then dwell with men, that the saints will be His people and He will be their God. In eternity saints will enjoy a new intimacy with God which is impossible in a world where sin and death are still present. The tabernacle of God is with men. The tabernacle was the original symbol of God dwelling with His people. In eternity, mankind will dwell with God. In that eternal state, we will not only enjoy fellowship with our redeemed loved ones but will also have actual fellowship with God Himself.
"Tabernacle" here means dwelling place of God. No longer will he be far off. No longer will he be "veiled" in the human form of Jesus Christ, in a cloud, a pillar of fire or in a Holy of Holies.
Just like God walked with Adam in the Garden of Eden, He will be in heaven with us continually. As Matthew 5 v.8 states: The pure in heart shall see God. Believers will see God as He is.
The new order will be without sorrow. God will wipe every tear from their eyes, and death with its mourning, and pain with its crying will vanish, for the old order of things will have passed away. All tears, pain, sorrow, and death will be removed in that heavenly New Jerusalem where Christians will live. This is the exact opposite of the curse that resulted from Adam's sin (see Gen. 3: verses 16 to19). The effects of the curse are removed, and all things are made new. God does not merely repair the creation, He re-creates it for His children to enjoy for all eternity.
Just as the disciples knew security when Jesus was there to take care of all their needs, we will know perfect peace and joy in heaven. Jesus is the king of peace. Jesus defeated death on the cross. The biggest fear of mankind is death. We just read where the Christians will not taste the second death. This fear is gone away. Death will no longer hang over the Christian. The Christian has eternal life (not death).
There won't be any reason to cry for in heaven. The devil and all his problems he brought upon the Christians have been thrown into the lake of fire. Every negative thing has been done away with.
Some have wondered if grief and sorrow will exist for a while in heaven and then be done away with here at the establishing of the new order. It is better to understand this passage as saying that heaven will have none of the features that so characterize the present earth.

Revelation 21:5-6

The dramatic change to the new order is expressed in the words, I am making everything new! This revelation is trustworthy and true, and John was instructed to write down that fact. The One bringing about the change is Christ, who calls Himself the Alpha and the Omega (cf. Rev_1:8; Rev_22:13), the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet, interpreted by the phrase the Beginning and the End. "The One who sits on the throne said", is the same One "from whose presence earth and heaven fled away. (Rev 20 v.11)
Here we see God sitting on the throne saying that He "makes all things new" when we are saved we become a new creature. We know this saying is true for the believer. Just as He did not throw us away and get a new person: He says here "I make all things new".
He did not say He made new things. He just takes the old things and transforms them into new. Here we see that Jesus commanded John to write, because all the things He has been shown are true. Jesus is the truth.
Those who are thirsty are promised that they will be able to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life. Apparently this refers not to physical thirst but to a desire for spiritual blessings. It is done. These words mark the end of redemptive history. This is a statement ( Gr. gegonan) of divine finality. It represents God's promise that this new state will be forever. Alpha and Omega is the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet. Hence, this phrase represents the sum of all things. In Revelation 1: v.11 and 22: verses 12 to13 it is used of Christ. Here it is used of God the Father ("He that sat on the throne"), indicating the deity of both the Father and the Son.
Just as Jesus said on the cross "It is finished" You see, Jesus is the way to get to the water of life. In fact, He is the water. He is life. He who hungers and thirst after righteousness shall be filled. There is nothing before Him and nothing after Him.
A citizen of heaven is described as one who "thirsts" signifying those who recognize their desperate spiritual need, "hunger and thirst for righteousness", Matt. 5 v.6.

Revelation 21:7-8

Christ explained that he who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be his God and he will be My son. This expresses the intimate relationship between the saints and God in the eternal state. An overcomer is one who exercises saving faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. A person who in faith drinks the water of salvation freely offered by God. Each of the seven letters to the churches in Rev. 2 and 3 end in the promise of he that overcomes will inherit these things.
Just as a bride is an equal inheritor of all that is her husband's, so the Church, the Bride of Christ, will inherit all that is His. He even promises that He will be our God and we shall be His son. These terms of endearment are experiences we as Christians shall enjoy forever.
From this scripture, we see there is something we must overcome. If we are faithful to Him in the face of all odds, we will inherit eternal life. The New Testament is actually an inheritance to the believers. If we believe, we can collect on that inheritance. Who ever we are faithful to, is our God. If he is our God, He will claim us as His son.
By contrast, those who practice the sins of the unbelieving world will be excluded from the New Jerusalem and will be destined for the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This judgment is a righteous punishment for their sins, eight of which are itemized here. He adds, This is the second death. The contrasts between verses seven and eight are graphic. They represent the age-old concept that there are only two kinds of people with God, believers and unbelievers. They experience two different lifestyles on earth and go to two different eternal destinies. Believers go to "eternal life" while unbelievers experience "the second death," which is the lake of fire.
Fear is not of God. Fear is the opposite of faith. In fact, it is mentioned twice here by saying "fearful and unbelieving". Jesus cannot be someone's Savior, unless they believe they He is their Savior.
Abomination, meaning vile, polluted, detestable, wholly caught up in wickedness and evil. Here, we see those who do abominable things taking part in the second death.
Notice here this says "murderers" not accidental killing or killing in war. This is premeditated murder, or those who hate their neighbors.
We see here "whoremongers" (this means not only in the physical but also in the spiritual).
"Sorcerers" has to do with the occult and also drugs.
"Idolaters" has to do with anything or anyone you put ahead of God.
"Liars" can do more harm than you can imagine. Many have a tendency to tell little white lies, but any untruth is a lie.
Those whose lives are characterized by such things give evidence that they are not saved and will not enter into the heavenly city.
After we are forgiven of our sins and born again, we must practice salvation. We must not have the habit of sinning. We may slip and sin, but if we do, we have an advocate with the Father. Repent and ask forgiveness, and then as Jesus told the woman who the Pharisees had caught in the art of adultery, "Go and sin no more". Do not practice sin. The horror of it all if you do not change from these evils, is that you will be thrown into the lake of fire.
It should be obvious that this passage is not affirming salvation by works, but rather is referring to works as indicative of whether one is saved or not. Obviously many will be in heaven who before their conversions were indeed guilty of these sins but who turned from them in the day of grace in trusting Christ as their Savior. Though works are the evidence of salvation or lack of it, they are never the basis or ground of it. Similar lists of sins are found elsewhere in Revelation (cf. Rev_21:27; Rev_22:15).

Revelation 21:9-11

The New Jerusalem As The Bride
One of the angels of Rev_16:1-21 who had poured out a bowl of wrath on the earth then invited John to see the New Jerusalem as a bride. Come, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb. Carried by the Spirit to a high mountain, John saw the New Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from God, shining with the glory of God. From the past, at the beginning of the millennium, one of the seven angels who poured out a bowl or vial appeared to John.
Now the angel was to show John the Lamb's bride, the Lamb's wife. New Jerusalem is likened to a bride because the redeemed are forever united to God and the Lamb.
At this point, the marriage has already taken place in 19 v.7 and now is referred to as "The Lamb's Wife.
Expositors have raised questions about the additional revelation of the New Jerusalem, beginning in Rev_21:9. Some believe that this section is a recapitulation and pictures the New Jerusalem as it will be suspended over the earth during the millennial reign of Christ. A preferred interpretation, however, is that the passage continues to describe the New Jerusalem as it will be in the eternal state. Obviously the city would be much the same in either case, but various indications seem to relate this to the eternal state rather than to the Millennium.
The overall impression of the city as a gigantic brilliant jewel compared to jasper, clear as crystal indicates its great beauty. John was trying to describe what he saw and to relate it to what might be familiar to his readers. However, it is evident that his revelation transcends anything that can be experienced.
The jasper stone known today is opaque and not clear (cf. Rev_4:3). It is found in various colors, and John apparently was referring to the beauty of the stone rather than to its particular characteristics. Today one might describe that city as a beautifully cut diamond, a stone not known as a jewel in the first century.
As in the earlier references to the New Jerusalem as a bride, here again is a city, not a person or group of people. This is confirmed by the description of the city which follows. That great city, the holy Jerusalem. The Lamb's wife is described as the new city of Jerusalem. This magnificent city is where the bride of Christ (the Church) will live forever. The most dominant characteristic of the holy city is the presence of God's Glory, which personifies God's presence with His people. The Glory that departed from the Old Jerusalem (see Ezek. Chapters 8 to 11) is restored to the New Jerusalem of the future.
John's incredible vision began when the angel carried him away in the Spirit in Rev. 1 where he received the visions that make up the book of Revelation. John's visions were not dreams, but spiritual realities, like the one's Paul saw when he was also caught up to the third heaven.
From John's vantage point atop a great and high mountain, he repeats his observation of verse 2 that New Jerusalem came down out of heaven from God, emphasizing its divine origin.
Note what is described here is not the creation of heaven, but the descent of what already existed from eternity past. Now it's being situated in the center of the new heaven and the new earth.
"The Glory of God": The brilliance radiating from New Jerusalem caused by the full manifestation of God's glory will be so much, the city will have no need of the sun or the moon as the glory of God will illuminate it.

Revelation 21:12-13

The New Jerusalem As A City
John saw a gigantic city, “square” in shape (Rev_21:16), and surrounded by a great, high wall with 12 gates. The 12 gates bore the names of the 12 tribes of Israel. The inclusion of the names of the twelve tribes of Israel and the twelve apostles in the foundations and gates of the city (see 21 v.14), indicates that both Jewish and Gentile believers will all be part of the family of God and share eternity as one. Although it would seem that the Jews are distinct from the Church during the Millennium, they will all be one as children of the living God for eternity.
If you have ever been to Jerusalem in Israel, you know the old city has a large wall around the city. The physical Jerusalem here has 12 gates. You see, this earthly Jerusalem is a replica of this heavenly Jerusalem.
Here we see their names (twelve tribes), celebrating God's covenant relationship with Israel, the people of the promises, covenants, scriptures and the Messiah.
These angels are stationed to attend to God's glory and to serve His people.
The number 12 is prominent in the city with 12 gates and 12 angels (Rev_21:12), 12 tribes of Israel (Rev_21:12), 12 foundations (Rev_21:14), 12 apostles (Rev_21:14), 12 pearls (Rev_21:21), 12 kinds of fruit (Rev_22:2), with the wall 144 cubits — 12 times 12 (Rev_21:17), and the height, width, and length, 12,000 stadia, about 1,400 miles (Rev_21:16). The city has walls north, south, east, and west with three gates on each side (Rev_21:13) and with an angel standing guard at each gate (Rev_21:12). This is reminiscent of the way the twelve tribes camped around the tabernacle in numbers 2 and the allotment of tribal lands around the millennial temple. (Ezek. 48)
This is an entirely different situation from the earthly Jerusalem in the Millennium. But if the names of the gates corresponded to the millennial Jerusalem described in Eze_48:31-34, the north side from east to west would have the gates named Levi, Judah, and Reuben. On the west side from north to south were Naphtali, Asher, and Gad; on the south side from east to west, Simeon, Issachar, and Zebulun; and on the east side from north to south, Joseph, Benjamin, and Dan. In contrast to Rev_7:5-8, where Dan is omitted and Joseph and Manasseh are included, Ezekiel mentioned Dan but not Manasseh.

Revelation 21:14-16

The 12 foundations to the city’s wall bore the names of the 12 apostles of the Lamb. The apostles were part of the church, the body of Christ. Thus both the church and Israel will be in the city; the former are represented by the apostles’ names on the foundations (Rev_21:14), and the latter by the names of Israel’s 12 tribes on the gates (Rev_21:12). The foundation of Christianity was established by Jesus through the twelve apostles. You can easily see, this is not only a city but stands for the Christians as well.
These stones commemorate God's covenant relationship with the church of which the apostles are the foundation of.
The layout of New Jerusalem's gates picture God's favor on all His redeemed people from both the old and new covenant.
The distinction between Israel and the church is thus maintained.
An angel measured the city with a measuring rod of gold, about 10 feet in length. The city is 12,000 stadia in length and width, approximately 1,400 miles on each side. Tremendous as is the dimension of the city, the amazing fact is that it is also 1,400 miles high. This is like Ezek. 40 v.3 and the measuring of the millennial temple. Also, the measuring of the Tribulation temple described in chapter 11 v.1.
All three measurements is showing the significance that shows what belongs to God. The city lies foursquare. The size of this city indicates that each border is approximately fifteen hundred miles long. Thus the dimensions of the city would be equal to the area from the eastern seaboard of the United States to Colorado on one side and from the Canadian border to the southern tip of Florida on the other. In addition to the length and breadth, the city will be fifteen hundred miles high. This great size will afford sufficient space for the habitation of the saints from all ages of history.
We see here that this city is a cube. Twelve thousand furlongs is 1500 miles. This city is 1500 miles square and 1500 miles high.

Revelation 21:17-18

Surrounding this huge city is a wall 144 cubits or 216 feet thick. The reference to man’s measurement simply means that though an angel is using the rod, he is using human dimensions. A cubic is 18 inches or 1-1/2 feet. Times 144, the wall was 216 feet across. Just as in Babylon the walls, were wide enough for chariot races. This is even wider.
To emphasize the city's dimensions are literal and not mystical, John tells us that the measurements are given according to human measurements.
As John gazed at the wall, he saw that it was made of jasper, and that the city was made of pure gold, as pure as glass. The massive walls a material called jasper. This is the same diamond like stone that was mentioned in verse 11. (Clear as crystal)
Next the city itself was pure gold, like clear glass. Imagine how God's glory will radiate throughout and light up the entire city.
John was using the language of appearance, for apparently both the jasper and the gold differ from these metals as they are known today. In Rev_21:11 the jasper is translucent, and in Rev_21:18 and Rev_21:21 the gold is clear like glass.

Revelation 21:19-21

The decorations of the foundations (with the apostles’ names inscribed on them) include 12 stones involving different colors. The twelve gates were twelve pearls. Every gate will be one pearl, each large enough to cover the gateway to this huge city. In addition, the street of the city will be "pure gold, like unto clear glass," indicating that believers will walk on golden streets. The holy city of God will be so magnificent that believers will literally walk on precious metals that today are used for costly adornments.
There is no silver in the city. Silver means redemption and we have already been redeemed. These stones show us things that are important here on the earth are plentiful in heaven. You see, God owns all the wealth in the world. God has so many rare stones He even puts them in the wall. Each gate is made of just one pearl.
And remember the height of the cube is 1500 miles. That makes for a very large pearl.
The streets in New Jerusalem is made of the highest quality of pure gold which is like everything else, transparent. We are not familiar with transparent gold here on earth, but everything in heaven is transparent to let the light of God's glory blaze unrestricted.
The color of the jasper is not indicated. The sapphire was probably blue; the chalcedony comes from Chalcedon, Turkey and is basically blue with stripes of other colors. The emerald is a bright green; the sardonyx is red and white; and the carnelian, called a “sardius” in the NASB, is usually ruby-red in color, though it sometimes has an amber or honey color. In Rev_4:3 the carnelian stone is coupled with the jasper to reflect the glory of God. The chrysolyte is a golden color, probably different from the modern chrysolyte stone which is pale green. The beryl is a sea green; the topaz is a transparent yellow-green; the chrysoprase is also green; the jacinth is violet in color; and the amethyst is purple. The stones together provide a brilliant array of beautiful colors. The gates resemble huge, single pearls, and the street of the city was of pure gold, like transparent glass (cf. Rev_21:18).
While the beauty of the city may have symbolic meaning, no clue is given as to the precise interpretation. Since it is reasonable to assume that the saints will dwell in the city, it is best to take the city as a literal future dwelling place of the saints and angels.

Revelation 21:22-27

John declared that he did not see a temple in the city because God the Father and the Lamb (God the Son) are its temple. There will be no need for light from the sun or moon because the glory of God will provide the light. As John explained, the Lamb is its lamp.
From the fact that the nations (the Gentiles) will be in the city (Rev_21:24, Rev_21:26) — as well as Israel and the church — it is evident that the city is the dwelling place of the saints of all ages, the angels, and God Himself. The description of the heavenly Jerusalem in Heb_12:22-24 itemizes all those mentioned here and adds “the spirits of righteous men made perfect,” which would include all other saints not specifically mentioned. "No temple therein:" There will be no need for a temple in heaven to provide a means for a man to fellowship with God. Because of Jesus sacrificial death on the cross, sin will not exist there. God and the Lamb are the temple of the eternal city. This clearly emphasizes the deity of Christ as equal in essence to that of the father.
There will be not need for anyone to go anywhere to worship God. Believers will constantly be in His presence. There will never be a minute when they are not in perfect, Holy Communion with the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb. Therefore there will be no need for a temple, cathedral, church, chapel or any other house of worship. No more day and night but there will be one eternal day. The Glory of God will illuminate New Jerusalem and its lamp with be the Lamb Jesus, who is the Light, and does away with darkness. Believers will be the true worshipers God has always sought. The reference to "nations" reminds us that our national distinctions, like our personal appearances, are God-given. Revelation 7: v.9 refers to "a great multitude of all nations," and Revelation 5: v.10 refers to believers as "kings and priests" who reign with Christ.
Not that any national identities will be preserved in the eternal state, but rather just the opposite. People from every tongue, tribe and nation whether Jews or Gentiles, will be united as God's people. Every believer will be fully equal in the eternal capital city.
This just means that God doesn't care whether you are Chinese, African, or American. If you accept Jesus, you will be in heaven regardless of what country you're from.
John learned that the gates of the city will never be shut, and because God’s glory will be present continually there will be no night there. The glory and honor of the nations will be in the city, and everything that is impure… shameful, or deceitful will be excluded (cf. Rev_21:8; Rev_22:15). Its gates will never be closed. This depicts the city's complete security and that there is no need to close them.
New Jerusalem is a place of rest, safety and refreshment where God's people will "rest from their labors." Never again will anything have to be shut up for fear of loosing it by thieves and robbers. None of that will ever exist again.
The inhabitants will be only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life. It is interesting that in the six references to the book of life in Revelation only this one calls it “the Lamb’s” (cf. Rev_3:5; Rev_13:8; Rev_17:8; Rev_20:12, Rev_20:15). All who enter heaven will surrender their earthly prestige and glory when they enter. All who enter heaven "will cast their crowns before the throne" of God". (Chapter 4 v.10) This Scripture just means that this is a holy city (a place of true worship). There will be no evil of any kind in it. The residents are the redeemed, those washed in the blood of the lamb. Those who have been made righteous in Christ.
Once again, we are confronted with the significance of having our names written in the Lamb's book of life assuring us that Christ knows each believer personally, by name.
What a wonder this will be - to continually see God's face (Rev. 22 v.4) and to walk in the light of His presence (Rev 21 v.23 and 22 v.5) No wonder John tells us there is no temple in heaven (21: v.22) for as Paul wrote, "who hopes for what one already has" (Romans 8 v.24). What need could you have for a temple when everywhere you go is God? But a temple is not the only thing missing in heaven. What else does it lack?
Consider the following short list:
• No more sea (21 v.1)
• No more tears, death, sorrow, crying or pain (21 v.4)
• No more sinners (21 v.Cool
• No more fear (21 v.12)
• No more sun or moon (21 v.23)
• No more night (21 v.25)
• No more sin or evil (21 v.27)
• No more disease or injuries (22 v.2)
• No more curse (22 v.3)
It would be enough to call this place "heaven" just from that list of what it lacks. But that wouldn't tell half of the story! Now consider some of the remarkable features eternity will boast:
• Unending fellowship with God (21 v.3, 7, 22)
• Unending newness (21 v.5)
• Unending water of life (21 v.6; 22 v.1)
• Unimaginable beauty (21 v.11, 21)
• Uncompromised security (21 v.12)
• Unbroken unity between believers (21 v.12, 14)
• Unlimited holiness (21 v.16)
• Unparalleled size (21 v.16)
• Untold wealth (21 v.18-21)
• Unending light (21 v.23; 22 v.5)
• Unrestricted access (21 v.25)
• Unending fruit from the tree of life (22 v.2)
• Unceasing service to God (22 v.3)
• Unending reign (22 v.5)
Beyond these thrilling descriptions from the book of Revelation, we know from other Bible texts that heaven will be a place of:
• Rest (Heb. 4 v.1-11; Rev 14 v.13)
• Full knowledge (1 Cor. 13 v.12)
• Holiness (Heb. 12 v.14; Eph. 2 v.21)
• Joy (1 Thess 2 v.19; Jude 1 v.24)
• Glory (2 Cor. 4 v.17)
• Worship (Rev. 7 v.9-12; 19 v.10)
With all that heaven and eternity have to offer, it is hard to see why anyone would deliberately choose to miss it.
Yet many will, according to Rev. 21 v.8, 27 and 22 v.11, 15. Make sure you're not one of them!
Though the description of the city does not answer all questions concerning the eternal state, the revelation given to John describes a beautiful and glorious future for all who put their trust in the living God.
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Prophetic Times To The End Part Twenty-Eight
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