Chapter 21

Here we will get a picture of the new Heaven and the new earth. We will see the New Jerusalem descending from Heaven with all of the beauty that will be there. We will see the size of the city and that there are 12 gates and 12 foundation stones with names written thereon. This is a most beautiful chapter and we will be blessed with the study.

Revelation 21:1 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.

Revelation 21:2 And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.

The Apostle John is still talking and he see’s a new heaven and a new earth. The word for “new” used here in the Greek is “Kahee-nos”, which means new as in freshness, not the word “neh-os” which means “new”, that is, (of persons) youthful, or (of things) fresh; figuratively regenerate: – new, young.”

Matthew chapter 24 and verse 35 seems to say that the earth and the heavens will pass away also.

Matthew 24:35 Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.

J. Vernon McGee tells us that the old creation was made for the first Adam and that Christ as the last Adam will have a new creation for His people.

When we read in Isaiah we find a similar passage in chapter 65.

Isaiah 65:17 For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind.

This seems to be giving us the same information.

Then we have another passage in Isaiah that speaks to the same issue.

Isaiah 51:5 My righteousness is near; my salvation is gone forth, and mine arms shall judge the people; the isles shall wait upon me, and on mine arm shall they trust.

Isaiah 51:6 Lift up your eyes to the heavens, and look upon the earth beneath: for the heavens shall vanish away like smoke, and the earth shall wax old like a garment, and they that dwell therein shall die in like manner: but my salvation shall be for ever, and my righteousness shall not be abolished.

Next we have the final passage that I will use which is Isaiah 66.

Isaiah 66:22 For as the new heavens and the new earth, which I will make, shall remain before me, saith the LORD, so shall your seed and your name remain.

Now I have included the preceding passages to give us an idea that God will destroy this present earth and the present Heaven because they have been corrupted and will replace them with the new Heaven and the new Earth where there will be no more corruption. When we see here in Revelation chapter 21 a new heaven and a new earth that is exactly what will transpire.

John now gets the vision of the Holy city descending from God out of the new Heaven and it is breathtakingly beautiful. If you have ever been to a wedding, remember how the bride looked, she was gorgeous, beautiful in her gown, sparkling in her radiance. This is just a small picture of how the new city will look on the outside. It will be most magnificent to look upon.

Revelation 21:3 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.

Revelation 21:4 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.

John hears the great voice from the Heavens telling him that the dwelling place of God in now with His creatures. God Himself will now live with the believers and take them for His people and we will worship Him as God for that is exactly what He is and what He wants, our worship. Then John is told in verse 4 that God will wipe away all tears. This will be most grand, no more pain and no more sorrow. No more will we or our loved ones face death because, it has been abolished.

How many of us have our physical bodies that are hurting in some way. Broken bones, injuries, arthritis, poor vision and hearing, all of this will be forgotten in this city. The body will be perfect; it will not age or ache. That in itself should make each one of us shout Halleluiah, praise the Lord who now reigns in the heart of mankind. All of the former things and pains are passed away, just like the old creation, gone forever and replaced with the new.

Revelation 21:5 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.

Aren’t you glad that God is true and faithful; I am because that makes His word true and faithful. We can depend upon the word of God as we have it before us in written form, it is infallible and inerrant. God will accomplish every word and will not fail because He is the Almighty God, the Great “I AM”.

Revelation 21:6 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.

Revelation 21:7 He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.

I am looking at the phrase It is done in verse 6 and I see that it is different than the words It is finished that we find in the gospel of John chapter 19 and verse 30.

John 19:30 When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.

This wording takes the meaning of completed as in the plan of redemption has been completed, while it is done takes the meaning of ”action”. “It is done,” is happening as John looks and beholds the events taking shape right before his eyes, God is bringing the new city down from Heaven and proclaiming that mankind will be His people and He will be their God. We are promised the fountain of the water of life, an eternity with God.

Verse 6 also shows us the One that makes these statements. He is the eternal God; I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. This is none other than Jesus the Christ to whom we were introduced to in chapter 1 of this book where He said He was the Alpha and Omega.

Revelation 1:11 Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea.

Remembering that this book is all about Jesus Christ we now see the correlation. Revelation is about Jesus Christ from chapter 1 through chapter 22 as is the whole of scripture from Genesis through Revelation.

Revelation 21:7 He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.

Revelation 21:8 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.

In Matthew chapter 5 and verse 6 we find these words.

Matthew 5:6 Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.

All believers will hunger and thirst for the righteousness of Jesus Christ. The only way to be an overcomer is to be “in Christ” because we are sealed with the Holy Spirit as stated in Ephesians 1:13,14.

Ephesians 1:13 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,

Ephesians 1:14 Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.

This is the down payment of the covenant we have made with Christ, we have asked Him to redeem us and cleanse us from all sin. We have committed our life to Him and received Him as our Lord and our God and He has given us the Holy Spirit so that we may know that we are accepted in the body of Christ, the Church. Jesus gives us the Spirit now as the earnest payment guaranteeing that we will be with Him in the New Jerusalem. We could call this our ticket to Heaven. We will endure to the very end because of the promise that we have been given by Christ.

We see this in the gospel of John chapter 1 and verse 12.

John 1:12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

also in Romans 8 verses 16,17,

Romans 8:16 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:

Romans 8:17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

Although the old earth and the old heaven have been replaced with the new, there is one place that remains the same, it has not changed nor will it ever be altered in any way shape or form. It is the destiny of the unrighteous, the blasphemer, the idolater and every God hater in the universe, it is the Lake of Fire that burns with fire and brimstone. Every person that has rejected God’s Son, the Lord Jesus Christ will share this eternal abode. Remember any sin can be forgiven, any sin, but the rejection of Christ is unforgiveable and will end in the Lake of Fire. The second death is not cessation of being, it is eternal torment.

Revelaton 21:9 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.

Revelation 21:10 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,

Revelatiom 21:11 Having the glory of God: and her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal;

J. Vernon McGee translates verse 10 a little differently: “And I saw the Holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband.

This is a fantastic picture of how Christ will honor His bride. He has made a city for her and it is a gift to the bride of unspeakable wealth and beauty. When we speak of going to Heaven what do most of us think about or picture Heaven to be? Some folks think it will be setting on a cloud and playing a harp. Some have said it will be eternal sack time, lots of rest but I think not. God has a job for us to do here and now and He will have a job for us in Heaven also because, we will rule and reign with Christ. Now I don’t know how we can rule and reign while we sleep or slumber. Ruling makes me think of action, doing something under the direction of Jesus Christ.

Heaven for the believer will be the New Jerusalem that comes down from God prepared for the bride of Christ, this is where we will live.

Now look at the beauty described here in the following verses.

Revelatiom 21:11 Having the glory of God: and her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal;

This city will be bright because it will have the Glory of God, it will sparkle and it will be rather transparent and the light will permeate the entire city.

Revelation 21:12 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:

Revelation 21:13 On the east three gates; on the north three gates; on the south three gates; and on the west three gates.

Revelation 21:14 And the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and in them the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

Twelve gates, twelve angels and twelve foundations, one angel at each gate. There are three gates on each side with names written on them which are the twelve tribes of Israel, three names on each gate. The scripture states that there are twelve foundations and in them the names of the twelve apostles. The spiritual meaning is this, that Christ being the chief cornerstone delivered the gospel message to the twelve apostles. They in turn delivered the message which was and is the sure foundation.

There is also the physical examination which leads us to see the Heavenly city just as it is pictured here for us. Everything that will go into eternity will be holy because it came from the Lord Jesus Christ. Everything is built on the foundation of Jesus Christ.

Revelation 21:15 And he that talked with me had a golden reed to measure the city, and the gates thereof, and the wall thereof.

Revelation 21:16 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(Stad-ee-on). The length and the breadth and the height of it are equal.

Revelation 21:17 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 city will be square, not round or hexagonal and not a pyramid as the scripture says “foursquare”. The Greek word here for the KJV “furlong” is stad-ee-on. 1 stad-ee-on is equal to 220 yards or 660 feet or, one eighth of a mile.

So we have 660 feet times 12000 stad-ee-on equals 7,920,000 feet divided by 5,280 feet (one mile) equals 1500 miles. The city will be 1500 miles wide and 1500 miles deep and 1500 miles high, it will be a cube in shape. To give us some perspective on the size, this cube would just fit if placed inside the earth’s moon. All 8 corners would be touching the outer surface of the moon and, that is the description that was given by J. Vernon McGee.

Revelation 21:17 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.

One hundred and forty four cubits translates to about 216 feet. Now, this is not a wall around the city, it is the walls of the city, each side of the city will be 216 feet thick. This is even more amazing when we see what the city is made of, precious stones.

Revelation 21:18 And the building of the wall of it was of jasper: and the city was pure gold, like unto clear glass.

This city having such thick walls might lead one to speculate that they are for protection of the inhabitants, but that is not the case. The walls are for great beauty having been built by Christ for the glory of God. This is where the people of God will live and it will be most magnificent. We further see that the beauty doesn’t stop there because it permeates the city. The walls could be called the Jasper or Diamond walls because of their strength, the Diamond is the hardest of all stones and the light of the city will pour out from the inside because of the shechinah glory of God on the inside.

I have been told by others that it is possible to refine gold to a point that it becomes transparent, although I have never seen anything like this, and I do think in our world it is still a theory, however nothing is impossible with God.

Now to go just a little further with the light of this city, let’s look at the following passages:

Revelation 21:19 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;

Revelation 21:20 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.

Revelation 21:21 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.

Revelation 21:22 And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it.

Revelation 21:23 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.

Revelation 21:24 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.

We have brilliant jewels everywhere, the walls, the foundations, and gates of pure pearl. Can you imaging the light shining through the walls and through the various jewels of the foundations? I see that there will be all of the rainbow colors plus a bunch more that we haven’t even though of. When God does something He does is right. Jesus said that He was going to build us a dwelling place and He has certainly done a beautiful Job.

John 14:1 Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.

John 14:2 In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.

John 14:3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.

Revelation chapter 21 is the fulfillment of Matthew chapter 14:1-3. Jesus said that He was going to prepare a place for the church and here in Revelation chapter 21 He has done just that. The city from Heaven is the eternal dwelling place of the church and the Lamb of God.

Now the final verses of this section.

Revelation 21:24 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.

Revelation 21:25 And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day: for there shall be no night there.

Revelation 21:26 And they shall bring the glory and honour of the nations into it.

Revelation 21:27 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.

I see here that there will not be a need for the sun as we know it now, for the glory of the city will be the light of the world. The gates of the city will never be shut because there will be no enemy. In the Old Testament times the city would be shut at night, the gates would be closed to prevent any attack at night when the people would be sleeping, but here everyone who enters is a friend. There will no longer be any abominable thing or liars or anything that would defile the city because they have all been sent to the Lake of Fire.

Here is the most precious part of verse 27. but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life. The inhabitants of this city have all been written in the Lamb’s book of life.

Is your name written in this book? If you are not sure, if there is any doubt, take a few moments and return to chapter 13 and chapter 17 of Revelation where you will see the fate of denying Christ. Now return to chapter 20 and the following verses.

Revelation 20:11 And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.

Revelation 20:12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

Revelation 20:13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.

Revelation 20:14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.

Revelation 20:15 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.

This is the fate of anyone not found in the Lamb’s Book of Life. This does not have to be your fate for if you believe on the Lord Jesus Christ you will be saved, from eternal separation from God, the lake of Fire, eternal torment and suffering and you will be made ready as a bride is clothed for her husband, in the pure white robe of Jesus Christ.

May God richly bless you as you look into His Holy Word.