All of the judgments are finished and God wipes away every tear. The new heaven and new earth are revealed. In this realm, there is great beauty, but even more than that, “God is with humanity”. In our lives and experience, God was in the temple, in the holy of holies throughout the old testament, and in the new testament, the veil was torn (Hebrews 4:16) but we are still separated flesh and spirit. But here, God is the temple and there is no separation, there is no more consciousness of any separation from God and in Revelation 22:4 “they will see his face”.
The Holy City, New Jerusalem
Finally, a new heaven and a new earth. Corruption has been put away as has the sea. Now, in Revelation 21:1-4 God’s city, “the holy city, new jerusalem” comes down and “a loud voice from the throne saying, Behold, the dwelling of God is with humanity … he will wipe away every tear … death will not exist … pain will not exist … “. Then in Revelation 21:5-6 God speaks for himself “I am making all things new … I will give water from the spring of the water of life freely”. But God has strong boundaries. Not just anyone is allowed. In Revelation 21:7 He says, “the one who conquers will inherit”. Then there are all the rest in
Revelation 21:8 (LEB) But as for the cowards and unbelievers and detestable persons and murderers and sexually immoral people and sorcerers and idolaters and all liars, their share is in the lake that burns with fire and sulphur, which is the second death.
We, who have accepted Christ, who have conquered the world, and the flesh and the devil are starting fresh. A new life. But for God, there is this lake of fire that burns forever, the pain of sin and death and rebellion.
The Holy City Jerusalem
We sometimes forget that the angels perform God’s word without delay, without regret or remorse, without any judgement or second thought. This same angel, in Revelation 21:9 that carried “the seven last plaques” came to John saying “I will show you the bride”. In a moment he has moved from the final judgement and destruction of the ungodly to the “radiance” of the “holy city, Jerusalem” in Revelation 21:10-18.It is interesting to me that the city has a wall around it and that is has gates on every side and it has twelve foundations.
“The city was surrounded by a great, high wall, which means that it was secure and inviolable. It cannot be meant as a defence, for all enemies have been destroyed and in any case its gates are never shut (v. 25).”1
The city is secure because of the wall, and unshakable because of the foundation, and it represents a separation of the holy, what is inside, and the common, on the outside.
The Glory of God Illuminates
The city itself is beautiful in its construction and in the materials used but this is not its most magnificent feature. In
Revelation 21:22 And I did not see a temple in it, for the Lord God All-Powerful is its temple, and the Lamb.
The Lord and the Lamb are the temple. And, in
Revelation 21:23 And the city has no need of the sun or of the moon, that they shine on it, for the glory of God illuminates it, and its lamp is the Lamb.
And that light is truly the light of this new world because in
Revelation 21:24-25 And the nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their glory into it. 25 And its gates will never be shut by day (for there will be no night there),
The Water of Life
Here in Revelation 22:1 we find “the river of life … coming out from the throne” and this seems to be more than just water, but it certainly is “clear as crystal” and is nourishing “the tree of life” in Revelation 22:2 “and the leaves of the trees are for the healing of the nations”. And, in
Revelation 21:1 (LEB) And I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea did not exist any longer.
If there is no sea, where is the source of water? Let me suggest that God has always been the source as Jesus taught in Matthew 5:45 (LEB) “he causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and he sends rain on the just and the unjust.”
Lets not lose the main point though, in Revelation 22:3-5 “there will not be any curse any longer … and they will see his face … and they will reign forever.” As we read in Revelation 21:3 “the dwelling of God is with humanity”, there is no longer any separation from God, no more outer court or holy of holies that only the priest can enter. As we read in Revelation 21:22 “the Lord God All-Powerful is its temple, and the Lamb”. There is no more consciousness of any separation from God and I’ll quote again Revelation 22:4 “they will see his face”.
I Am Coming Quickly
It may seem like a long time coming, but for those on the wrong side of God’s wrath, it will seem too soon. Here is the thing about God, He always tells you what is coming before it happens, and you have an opportunity to “be holy” in Revelation 22:11 and be “blessed” in Revelation 22:14. And he always say it through more than one person’s testimony, as he told John in Revelation 22:10 “do not seal up the words of the prophecy of this book”.
Long before, Daniel was given a similar vision in Daniel 12:4 and Jesus warned of the end in Mk 13:32–37.
The Spirit and The Bride Say Come
The closing verses say it well
Revelation 22:16–17 (LEB) “I, Jesus, sent my angel to testify to you about these things for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star.” 17 And the Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And the one who hears, let him say, “Come!” And the one who is thirsty, let him come. The one who wants, let him take the water of life freely.
And John adds his final comment in
Revelation 22:20 The one who testifies about these things (John) says, “Yes, I am coming quickly!” Amen! Come, Lord Jesus!
The Path of Life
My wife happened to see the Sid Roth show with guest Kevin Zadai as he gives the testimony of his death, encounter with Jesus in heaven and his return life on earth. There were several powerful points and this one refers to Psalm 16.
From the transcript: “Jesus said that David wrote that psalm and he memorized that psalm because when he was in the depths of Hell, he said he spoke that verse of that psalm over and over again, and he said, “I cleared a way out in that place for you and for everyone, and Messiah to pray from those depths.” He said, “I prayed myself out of Hell because I had the Psalm 16 and I prayed that continually and then the Holy Spirit came and resurrected me.” He said, “When you pray, you pray with that kind of fervency where you know who you are based on the scripture.” Because he said, “I had no witness when I was down there. I had no Holy Spirit help.” He said, “If the Father had not given the command,” he said, “I would sit down there until he gave the command for me to be resurrected. That’s how much I trusted him.” He said, “That’s where you pray from. You pray from those depths, that trust.””.
- Revelation 21:1–8 The Holy City, New Jerusalem
- Revelation 22:1–5 The Water of Life
- Revelation 22:6–15 I Am Coming Quickly
- Revelation 21:1-27
- Revelation 22:1-17
- Psalm 16:1-11 The Path of Life
- 1. Morris, L. (1987). Revelation: an introduction and commentary (Vol. 20, p. 238). Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press.