Brit Chadasha Foundations-Concepts in Revelation-Chapter 21

Rev 21.1-27 includes imagery of the coming of the Olam Haba, the “perfect” of 1 COr 13.10; the “eighth day” after the Messianic Kingdom of 1000 years is over and the completion of the 7000 year plan of God. This chapter contains Sukkot themes including concepts concerning “the eighth day”; “the Mount of the Lord”; “place of his holiness”; “courtyard of the Lord”; the gate”; “the sanctuary”; “land of the living”; “the house of the Lord” and “Garden of Eden.” This is the restoration of man and creation being realized, the unification of all things. This chapter again will use typical apocalyptic language to convey spiritual truths and realities.

v 1…And I saw a new heaven and a new earth (an idiom meaning “as the world changes” and this would be the fifth one. They are: 1) from creation to the fall; 2) from the fall to the flood; 3) this present age; 4) the 1000 year messianic age; 5) the Olam Haba); for the first heaven and the first earth passed away (from one condition to another) and there is no longer any sea (no more mixed realm of good and evil men; the troubled sea of humanity that cannot rest-Isa 57.20. The sea will continue to exist as a waterway, but not used in the same way).

v 2…And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem (synonymous with the Olam Haba, the bride, the Shekinah, the Holy of Holies, etc. This is not the city in Ezekiel’s vision), coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband (meaning all the people are righteous, adorned with glorified bodies and there is a union between the groom and the bride. The “holy, or hallowed, city” means there is a kedusha and is set apart for the service of God by certain limitations and restrictions so it can carry the meaning of “married” and alludes to people and land in union with Yehovah in the Olam Haba- Isa 62.1-5).

v 3… And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, “Behold, the tabernacle (mishkan, dwelling place) of God is among men, and he (the Father) shall dwell (Hebrew “shkan” or dwelling presence) among them and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be among them (Immanuel, not by his Spirit, but in person),

v 4… and He (the Father) shall wipe away every tear from their eyes (no more sin or affliction); and there shall be no longer any death; there shall no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away (not like the Messianic Kingdom, this is the Olam Haba).

v 5… And he who sits on the throne (Yeshua-Rev 20.11) said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” And he said, “Write, for these words are faithful and true.”

v 6…And he said to me, “It is done (an allusion to the old creation where he spoke and it was done-Psa 33.9). I am the Alpha and Omega (the “head” of the covenant”; the cause and effect of all things), the beginning and the end (In the Hebrew alphabet it is “Aleph and Tav” meaning the “power, leader, first of the covenant, seal or sign, cross”). I will give to the one who thirsts from the spring of water of life without cost (there was a ceremony at Sukkot called “the Beit Ha Shoevah” which means “house of the water pouring.” A song called “Ushavtem” was sung from Isa 12.3 that says “Therefore you will joyously draw water from the springs of salvation (“yeshua” in Hebrew).

v 7… He who overcomes (by faith in Yeshua) shall inherit these things ( the everlasting kingdom), and I will be his God (clearly showing that Yeshua is God) and he will be my son.

v 8… But for the cowardly (the fear of man) and unbelieving (rejected the truth) and abominable (given to sin) and murderers (of the believers and prophets, the martyrs) and immoral persons and sorcerers and all liars, their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”

v 9…And one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the last seven plagues, came and spoke with me, saying, “Come here, I shall show you the bride (the new Jerusalem, the believers, called the bride, who have the Shekinah (presence) of God. Outside of the “city” are unbelievers), the wife of the Lamb (the bridegroom. The marriage and supper are over and believers are publicly proclaimed as the bride).”

v 10… And he carried me away in the Spirit (under the control of) to a great and high mountain (the Kingdom of God and Messiah-Dan 2.35) and showed me the holy (has a kedusha because the Lord dwells within) city (the believer, the bride and city are synonymous with the Shekinah-Jer 1.18; Isa 62.12) Jerusalem (the apostate city is called the “great city”, and is called Sodom and Egypt in Rev 11.8. That city is no more), coming down out of heaven from God (John 14.1);

v 11… having the glory (the Kivod, radiance) of God (The Bride has been restored to the image of God). Her brilliance (that is reflected from her, like the moon (believer) reflects the sun (bridegroom-Isa 30.26) was like a very costly stone, as a stone of crystal-clear jasper (the Father was seen to be like jasper and Messiah is said to be like one, fully understood, revealed, clear).

v 12… It had a great and high wall (not to be reached by the human mind, carnal insight or falsehood) with twelve gates (entrances, access), and at the gates twelve angels (messengers), and names written on them, which are the twelve tribes of the sons of Israel (If you want to know anything about God, the gates God has provided is through the Jewish people-John 4.22; Rom 3.1-2. The insights God has given them are found in the Scriptures. Zech 8.23 says that ten men from the nations of every language will grasp the garment (this is the “kanaf” or corners of the garment, where the tzitzit, or fringes, hang, which symbolize the commandments) of a Jew saying, “Let us go with you, for we have heard that God is with you.”);

v 13…on the east three gates ( Zebulon, Judah, Issachar) and three gates on the north (Asher, Dan, Naphtali) and three gates on the south (Gad, Reuben, Simeon) and three gates on the west (Manasseh, Ephraim, Benjamin-like how Israel camped around the Mishkan in the wilderness. It was in the shape of a cross).

v 14… And the wall (speaks of protection) of the city had twelve foundation stones (like Joshua picked twelve stones out of the Jordan-Josh 4.8) and on them the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb (Yeshua picked the twelve apostles, or sent ones. They were the foundation, the builders on which the eschatological kahal was built-Eph 2.19-20. This is done in remembrance of them for all time).

v 15…And the one who spoke with me had a gold (all God, glory) measuring rod to measure the city (the believers are without spot or wrinkle) and its gates (who could enter) and its wall (speaks of protection).

v 16…And the city is laid out as a square (believers come from the four corners of the earth), and its length is as great as the width (perfect); and he measured the city with a rod, fifteen hundred miles its length and width and height are equal (this is to be understood in the Sowd or mystical, hidden level, not the Peshat or literal level. It has allusions to the Holy of Holies, where God dwelt, which was 15 cubits by 15 cubits. This also alludes to the presence of God, face to face. The length, width and height in Jewish thought alludes to the knowledge and comprehension of God-Eph 3.18-19- which will be perfect-1 Cor 13.9-12).

v 17…And he measured its wall (protection), one hundred and forty-four cubits (the root is 12), according to human measurements, which are also angelic (or “of the angel” who talked with John and measured the city, gates and wall).

v 18…And the material of the wall was jasper; and the city was pure gold (all of God), like clear glass (clarity, understanding, to know all lines of a trade, perfect-Num 12.6-8; Matt 5.48).

v 19… The foundation stones of the city wall were adorned with every kind of precious stone. The first foundation stone was jasper (Benjamin’s name was written on it on the breastplate of the high priest, as were the names of the other tribes on the following stones); the second, sapphire (Issachar’s name); the third, chalcedony (Levi); the fourth, emerald (Judah);

v 20…the fifth, sardonyx (Joseph); the sixth, sardius (Reuben); the seventh, chrysolite (Asher); the eighth, beryl (Dan); the ninth, topaz (Simeon); the tenth, chrysoprase (Naphtali); the eleventh, jacinth (Zebulon); the twelfth, amethyst (Gad).

v 21… And the twelve gates were twelve pearls (speaks of wisdom, it grows through trials, pain and suffering, just like wisdom. It is the only gem formed by living flesh), each one of the gates was a single pearl (Matt 13. 45-46-the pearl of great price, the Basar through Yeshua). And the street (the way to walk) of the city was pure gold (all of God, the Scriptures) like transparent glass (clear understanding; the “perfect” of 1 Cor 13.10-12).

v 22… And I saw no temple (this is not the city in Ezekiel’s vision; there is no need for it now because it connected the heavenly with the earthly, the spiritual with the physical, a meeting place with God. All that has been unified now), for the Lord God, the Almighty, and the Lamb, are its temple (the believers are the city and the Lord is the temple).

v 23…And the city has no need of the sun or of the moon (This doesn’t mean there will be no literal sun and moon. We know they will still function as seen in Rev 22.2 where the Tree of Life gives its fruit “every month” but the glory of God will eclipse their light-Isa 60.19-22) to shine upon it, for the glory of God has illumined it (like the Kivod in Solomon’s temple-1 Kings 8.10, symbolizing the truth), and its lamp (also means “heir”) is the Lamb (the word of God, the living Torah-John 1.1-5. All men will know the Lord-Jer 31.34. This was illustrated in the temple during the festival of Sukkot, the festival of Nations. Four poles were set up in the court of the women and their light was seen for miles around, drawing men to the temple. This was called “the light of the world”)

v 24… And the nations (Gentiles, this shows us that there will be a distinction between Jews and Gentiles even in the eternal state) shall walk (before God) by its light (understanding), and the kings of the earth (mankind) shall bring their glory into it.

v 25…And in the daytime (for there will be no night or deception there) its gates shall never be closed (no enemy to fear);

v 26…and they shall bring the glory and honor of the nations into it (the people of God);

v 27… and nothing unclean (to prohibit worship) and no one who practices abomination (idolatry) and lying, shall ever come into it (Isa 52.1-2), but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life (the redeemed elect-Eph 1.4).

Posted in Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, Tying into the New Testament, Verse-by-Verse Bible Studies

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