Posted by: davidbowerkingwood | August 30, 2021

The Eternity in Your Future, the New Heaven and the New Earth, Part 2

The New Jerusalem

The Bible gives us tantalizing glimpses of eternity; it seems likely to me the reason God does not reveal more is there are simply no suitable words in our vocabulary to adequately describe all that God has planned for his children. In the Book of Revelation, we are given a few details.

In Revelation 21:1-4, we are told of the New Jerusalem as it descends to the New Earth:

21 Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the old heaven and the old earth had disappeared. And the sea was also gone. And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven like a bride beautifully dressed for her husband.

I heard a loud shout from the throne, saying, “Look, God’s home is now among his people! He will live with them, and they will be his people. God himself will be with them. He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.”

I’m of the opinion the New Jerusalem was completed before the rapture of the church and has served as home to the church since it was taken up to be with the Lord. The Bible does not specifically state where the New Jerusalem might be during the Millennial Reign of the Lord Jesus Christ but some scholars believe it just might be in orbit above the earth.

Should that be the case, it would be another testimony to the power of the Lord Jesus Christ and provide convenient access to earth for the resurrected saints. The Bible does not say, so we do not know conclusively but I do have fun speculating on the possibilities!

Revelation chapters 21 and 22 provide an all-too-brief glimpse into heaven and eternity. By this time, Christians will have had their heavenly bodies for over 1007 years and reigned with Christ over all creation.

The New Jerusalem is Really Big!

In Revelation 21:15-17, we are given some dimensions of the New Jerusalem?

15 The angel who talked to me held in his hand a gold measuring stick to measure the city, its gates, and its wall. 16 When he measured it, he found it was a square, as wide as it was long. In fact, its length and width and height were each 1,400 miles. 17 Then he measured the walls and found them to be 216 feet thick (according to the human standard used by the angel).”

Those dimensions show a very large city, but it does not show whether the city is in the form of a cube or a pyramid. Since the Bible does not specify, we simply do not know for sure which it might be. One of the arguments for a cube is the number of edges to be found in a cube versus a pyramid. The cube would have 12 edges while the pyramid would have only 8; the number 12 is highly significant in the Book of Revelation while the number 8 has no significance.

One other argument for the cube is the shape of the Holy of Holies, it too was a cube as described in 1 Kings 6:19-20 where it is written:

19 He prepared the inner sanctuary at the far end of the Temple, where the Ark of the Lord’s Covenant would be placed. 20 This inner sanctuary was 30 feet long, 30 feet wide, and 30 feet high.”

The description of the New Jerusalem continues in Revelation 21:18-27 where it is written:

18 The wall was made of jasper, and the city was pure gold, as clear as glass. 19 The wall of the city was built on foundation stones inlaid with twelve precious stones: the first was jasper, the second sapphire, the third agate, the fourth emerald, 20 the fifth onyx, the sixth carnelian, the seventh chrysolite, the eighth beryl, the ninth topaz, the tenth chrysoprase, the eleventh jacinth, the twelfth amethyst.

21 The twelve gates were made of pearls—each gate from a single pearl! And the main street was pure gold, as clear as glass.

A Glimpse of the Interior of the New Jerusalem

22 I saw no temple in the city, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. 23 And the city has no need of sun or moon, for the glory of God illuminates the city, and the Lamb is its light. 24 The nations will walk in its light, and the kings of the world will enter the city in all their glory. 25 Its gates will never be closed at the end of day because there is no night there. 26 And all the nations will bring their glory and honor into the city. 27 Nothing evil will be allowed to enter, nor anyone who practices shameful idolatry and dishonesty—but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.”

In Revelation 22:1-6 it is written:

“22 Then the angel showed me a river with the water of life, clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb. It flowed down the center of the main street. On each side of the river grew a tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, with a fresh crop each month. The leaves were used for medicine to heal the nations.

No longer will there be a curse upon anything. For the throne of God and of the Lamb will be there, and his servants will worship him. And they will see his face, and his name will be written on their foreheads. And there will be no night there—no need for lamps or sun—for the Lord God will shine on them. And they will reign forever and ever.

Then the angel said to me, “Everything you have heard and seen is trustworthy and true. The Lord God, who inspires his prophets, has sent his angel to tell his servants what will happen soon.”

The Kings of the World and their Nations

The population of the earth will have grown rapidly during the Millennial Reign of the Lord Jesus Christ. The number receiving Jesus Christ as Savior will be immense; it is from these people, the nations, in the New Heaven and the New Earth will be populated.

This is not specified in the Bible, but logic suggests to me that this may well be the case. The people of these nations may be given a similar command as given to Adam in Genesis 1:28-31 where it is written:

28 Then God blessed them and said, “Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth and govern it. Reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, and all the animals that scurry along the ground.”

29 Then God said, “Look! I have given you every seed-bearing plant throughout the earth and all the fruit trees for your food. 30 And I have given every green plant as food for all the wild animals, the birds in the sky, and the small animals that scurry along the ground—everything that has life.” And that is what happened.

31 Then God looked over all he had made, and he saw that it was very good!”

I love to meditate on the wonders we will find in eternity; I can imagine mankind spreading to the stars and populating planets in distant galaxies; after all there will be no shortage of time! If I, with my limited capacity, can imagine such things then what must an infinite, omnipotent God imagine?

I’m confident Christians will have great responsibilities and busy schedules; as royal priests, I can see us with both spiritual as well as administrative duties and who knows what else!

I suspect the wonders God has planned are far beyond my ability to even imagine; there will be vast and wonderful creations for which I have no words to describe! Nevertheless, I find great joy in just trying to imagine them!

Even so, come Lord Jesus!

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