Revelation 21:1-27 Part 4


Revelation 21:1-27 Part 4



1)      Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, (the first heaven and the first earth went away, and the sea is no more),

2)      and the new holy city Jerusalem coming out of the heaven from God having been made ready as a bride adorned for her husband.

3)      Then I heard a great sound from the seat saying “Lo, The tabernacle of God with man.”  He will tabernacle with them, they will be His people, God Himself will be with them;

4)      and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, the death will be no more, neither sorrow nor crying nor pain will be any more, for the firsts passed away.

5)      Then the One sitting upon the seat said: “Lo, I make everything new!”  And He says, “write; for these words are sure and true”;

6)      He said to me, “they are come to pass.  I, the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end, will freely give from the source of the water of life to him who thirsts;

7)      and the one overcoming will inherit these things, and I will be  God to him and he will be My son.

8)      But burning in the lake of fire and brimstone is the allotment of all the fearful and unfaithful and the corrupted and murderers and fornicators and sorcerers and idolaters and all the liars.”

9)      Then one of the seven messengers that had the seven bowls filled with the seven last plagues came and spoke with me saying, “here, I will show you the bride – the wife of The Lamb”.

10)  And it did bear me in spirit upon a great and high mountain and showed me the city – the holy Jerusalem coming down from the God of the heaven

11)  having her God’s glory, her radiance like a precious stone, crystal clear as a jasper stone,

12)  having a great and high wall having twelve gates, and at the gates twelve messengers and names written which are the names of the twelve tribes of the sons of Israel,

13)  three gates to the east, three gates to the north, three gates to the south, and three gates to the west;

14)  the wall of the city having twelve foundation stones, and on them twelve names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

15)  The one speaking with me had a golden measuring reed to measure the city and her gates and her wall,

16)  (the city is shaped square – her length the same as the breadth); and he measured the city with the reed: twelve thousand stadia, her length and breadth and height being equal;

17)  and he measured her wall: a hundred and forty four cubits (man’s measurement as is that of a messenger),

18)  the structure of her walls jasper, and the city as pure gold, crystal clear,

19)  the foundations of the wall of the city adorned with every precious stone; the first foundation jasper, the second sapphire, the third chalcedony, the fourth emerald,

20)  the fifth sardonyx, the sixth sardius, the seventh chrysolite, the eighth beryl, the ninth topaz, the tenth chrysoprase, the eleventh jacinth, the twelfth amethyst,

21)  the twelve gates twelve pearls (each of the gates were of one pearl), and the city’s street pure gold as transparent crystal.

22)  I saw no temple in her, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb is her temple.

23)  The city has no need for the sun or the moon that they should appear in her, for the glory of God was manifest in her and her light - the Lamb;

24)  the nations will walk by her light, and kings of the earth bear their glory into her

25)  by day (none of her gates will in any way be closed, and there will be no night there),

26)  and they will bear the glory and honor of the nations into her.

27)  By no means would anyone unclean ever enter into her doing abomination or falsehood, but only those written in the Lamb’s book of life.


John has been told that the time is near.  At the Parousia/appearance of The Christ, when every last one of the elect from the tribes of Jacob had been found and marked and sealed and rescued from the wrath to come, the harlot of the world would be executed.  God’s “heaven and earth”, Israel, would cease to exist.

John was shown the hundred and forty-four thousands of the house of Jacob in the heaven with the Christ!  He had kept them for Himself; and they had been resurrected from death unto life.  He had already been sacrificed for them; He had found them and redeemed them; they were with Him and In Him.  And they were ready to come with Him at His appearance.

But all those remaining in the land would suffer the wrath of God for their own sin!

The nation that God had set apart for Himself; that great city whose tabernacle God had occupied, would no longer be.  That separate cosmic paradise that He had called “heaven and earth” would be decreated.  It would disappear, and… no longer be.

And since it would no longer exist, neither would there be a turbulent sea of Gentile humanity surrounding it.  And no longer would there be a serpent/leviathian deceiving the nations and inciting them; for the satan would be bound and sealed in the abyss!

And then John saw (also imminent) a new heaven and a new earth descending from God in the heaven.  He sees the first one replaced by the new one.  The old is gone.  John doesn’t see it anymore, for it has disappeared.  What John sees, about to be, is that which is “new”.  (And, remember, it’s new of the same kind… but of greater and superior quality.)

This is what is near; this is what is imminent (as John writes to the Churches).  This is what was to comfort and assure the Churches that had just been established in the nations.  And it’s what they were to anticipate; for the promised Messiah had arrived and had poured out His Own blood.  And He had arisen from death and ascended to the Right of glory to assume His authority over the heavens and the earth.

And at His Parousia there would be no longer a use for the old.  It is the fullness of the time.  It’s time for the Savior of the world to appear in the cloud of glory; and “Lo, I make all things new”!

At the appointed time for the appearance of the One Who has all authority in the heaven and on the earth, the way things were would no longer be.

In the first heaven and the first earth, there was the dragon and its vengeance.  It had deceived all the nations and incited them to rise up against the covenant seed.  But in the new heaven and the new earth, the satan would be bound and sealed in the abyss so it could no longer deceive them and incite them.  And through all the years decreed, the peoples and tribes and tongues – multitudes promised to Abraham – would stream into the New Jerusalem to worship the King of Kings and Savior of the world.

Throughout history, from the creation, God had kept a remnant/seed for Himself; but from its inception this cosmos moved in the direction of its disintegration.  But at the appearance of the Christ it was all made new; and its direction was then toward its complete salvation and renewal!

In the first heaven and the first earth, paradise was lost; but in the new heaven and the new earth, paradise is created.  In the old cosmos only gross darkness covered the earth; but in the new cosmos every location will be in the full light of the Savior of the world.

In the first heaven and earth there were turbulent floods of savage nations and peoples and tongues, and floods of wrath from Almighty God.  But in the new heaven and the new earth there would be a river of life flowing into the sea of humanity.  And the sea would be healed.  And through all the years there would be increasing peace and prosperity until the earth would be filled with the knowledge of God as the water covers the sea.

In the first heaven and the first earth, God inhabited the holy of holies, in the temple, on the temple mount, in Jerusalem, in the land.  And a priestly representative went in once a year.  But in the new heaven and the new earth, our High Priest Jesus Christ dwells with us; and we are in Him.  He now tabernacles with us!

And it’s becoming easier to see from God’s perspective, isn’t it? It’s maybe not “easy” yet… but it’s becoming easier!  Rather than viewing all things with our senses and from our perspective (that is, from us toward Him), we have to learn to perceive His will and purpose from His perspective (that is, from Him toward us).

And His revelation to John is that the first cosmos (the first heaven and the first earth) is made to collapse and disappear at the appearance of His King, Jesus Christ – the Strong Right Arm of God; and then John is shown the new heaven and the new earth; and he sees the new Jerusalem coming down out of the heaven from God!  And He would tabernacle with us.  The first is decreated; and the new is created.  And it all would occur at the imminent appearance of the One Who has been given all authority in the heaven and on the earth!

That’s what John writes to the Churches.  That’s what is about to be, he wrote to them.  Don’t be confounded; don’t fear; be comforted and assured, he wrote to them; be confident; anticipate it!  Hold His testimony; keep His Commandments!  The time is near!

The Church of Jesus Christ is the public representative of the new heaven and the new earth and the new Jerusalem; so, before His appearance, Jesus sends messages to the Churches by John: cast out the judaists and the jezebels and the lying prophets and the fornicators; they have no place in the Lord’s Church!  The Day of the Lord is near!  The King of Kings and Lord of Lords is about to appear in the glory cloud with the Sword in His mouth; and all things will be made new!  And He will tabernacle with us!

The prophets of old had spoken and written these things long ago; and all of our Lord’s apostles knew these things were about to be.  Not only did they know what the prophets had said, but they had been taught by our Lord Himself.

In their letters to the Churches (all of them in advance of His appearance) they urged the Lord’s people to love one another, for they were brothers resurrected from death unto life in Jesus Christ… each of them written in the Lamb’s book of life from the beginning.  Each of them known and loved from the foundation; each of them re-birthed into His body by the same Spirit; and, having been re-born into His humanity, they were to grow up together into full-grown members with gifts to perfect the body; and they would be manifest to the world!  The Church is the public view of “God With Us”!

The Lord God of heaven and earth would tabernacle with us, and all things would be made new.  And His appearance is imminent, John said!

And throughout all the years all flesh would acknowledge Him.  Multitudes from the nations and tribes and tongues would be re-born into Him.  There was about to be a new creation brought to be at the appearance of Jesus Christ.  And the Churches were to be a visible, public manifestation of the new heaven and the new earth and the new Jerusalem; and that’s the context in which the Gospels and the apostolic letters were written… every one of them!  And without that context, the letters are misread!  They can’t be properly understood without it.  At our Lord’s imminent appearance there would come to be a new heaven and a new earth, and there would come a new Jerusalem; and our God and Savior Jesus Christ would tabernacle with us!

What does a Church do, and what does it preach, and how do its people live; and (as messengers of the Gospel) what do they proclaim… if they believe that these things are still yet to come?  In their re-interpretation of all of this, they’re still living in the time of the apostles when Jesus had not yet appeared in the cloud of glory to assume His authority!  They’re still living in the time of the old heaven and earth, as if Israel and the city of Jerusalem remained the location of our Lord’s future Kingdom.  They’re still living in a time before the satan was bound and sealed so that it could no longer deceive the nations.  They’re still living in a time when the Lord’s people were only a remnant of pilgrims wandering in a desert wasteland, waiting for the great conflagration yet to come!

So, what is it that they’re preaching!!

And then there is that part of the Church that somehow thinks that all of this that John writes is happening “in heaven”, where Jesus is!  What is it with that??  It’s very clear what John sees and writes here, isn’t it?  Our God is with us.  It’s a present reality that He tabernacles with us in this new heaven and new earth, in this new Jerusalem!

What would happen if all the Churches once again started preaching what John saw that was imminent in the first century?!!!  We would have another – and much greater – reformation, that’s what!  One that would be world-wide!

However, we’re assured that that will happen.  It will happen through the preaching of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

The entire corpus of Scripture points to the salvation of the world in Christ Jesus our Lord.  It’s this creation – this cosmos, this earth – that is the focus of attention for the Savior of the world……all for the glory of The Father.

And John sees His Parousia coming to pass “shortly”.  Jesus said “in this generation…. Some of you standing here today will see Me appear in the cloud of glory” to assume all authority in the heaven and on the earth.  John the baptizer knew Him when he saw Him; for all of Scripture pointed to Him and prophesied Him.

Throughout history, from the creation, there was a remnant – a remnant/seed kept for Himself.  And at His advent He was born King of Kings and Savior of the world.  At His crucifixion and resurrection the Redeemer bought and paid for all who were written in the book of life from the foundation of the world (beginning with the lost sheep of the tribes of Jacob).  And at Pentecost mankind – humanity – was rebirthed into Him.  And at His Parousia a new heaven and a new earth and a new Jerusalem were created in which God would dwell with His people.  And, for all the years decreed, the earth would prosper for the multitudes of His people from all the nations.

And He would complete its perfection at judgment day when all His enemies (the satan and sin and death and hades) would be cast into the lake of fire along with all who were not written in the Lamb’s book of life!

And it was all prophesied.  It’s all one continuous Revelation of God’s will and purpose.

As I said, all the Scripture points to these things, since the world’s salvation was the covenantal intent of God before the creation even came to be.

And our practice here is to read as many of the most clear of the passages of Scripture as we can.  As usual, because of our limited time, it will turn out to be just a few.  But at the manifestation of God’s King, the appearance of the new heaven and the new earth and the new Jerusalem are clearly prophesied in the texts of the prophets and the apostles.  And the letters and documents of the New Testament were written with a view to these things that were “about to be”.

First, let’s spend a minute or two with Paul’s letter to the Church at Colossae.  Here are a few verses from Colossians chapter one:


9)       For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray and make request for you, that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding,

10)  to walk worthily of the Lord unto all pleasing, bearing fruit in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God;

11)  strengthened with all power, according to the might of his glory, unto all patience and longsuffering… with joy;

12)  giving thanks unto the Father, who made us meet (i.e. appropriate) to be partakers of the inheritance of the holy ones in light;

13)  who delivered us out of the power of darkness, and translated us into the kingdom of the Son of his love;

14)  in Whom we have our redemption, the forgiveness of our sins;

15)  Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation;

16)  for in Him were all things created, in the heaven and upon the earth, things visible and things invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers; all things have been created through him, and unto him;

17)  and He IS before all things, and in Him all things consist.

18)  And He is the head of the body, the church; Who is the beginning, the firstborn from death; that in all things He might have the preeminence.

19)  For it was the good pleasure of the Father that in Him should all the fullness dwell;

20)  and by Him to reconcile all things unto Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross; through him, I say, whether things upon the earth, or things in the heavens.


What John is shown here in our chapter twenty-one is that which the apostle Paul already knew and wrote to the Church in Colossae.  At the coming appearance of The Christ, earth’s uninhabitable darkness and turbulence would be done away with.  What is revealed in this letter is the eschatological outcome of a comprehensive, cosmic reconciliation in Christ Jesus the Lord.  He has made peace with God through His blood on the cross; and He will reconcile all things to Himself, whether in heaven or on the earth.

John’s view of these things is the understanding of Paul as he wrote his letter.  The Church wasn’t simply to look forward to these things at a distant, future judgment day and resurrection.  But the Lord’s people at Colossae were to anticipate the Lord’s appearance… at which time He would reconcile all things to Himself, creating a new heaven and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.  And it would be a present and current reality.

And remember what the apostle wrote in the eighth chapter of Romans, where he said that the cosmos itself craved its reconciliation and renewal in Christ Jesus.

That’s what John sees here in chapter twenty-one!

Now let’s read from the prophecy of Isaiah at chapter sixty-five.  Seven hundred years before the advent of The Christ, God told Isaiah to write these words:


17)  For, behold, I will create a new heaven and a new earth; and the former things shall not be remembered nor come into mind.

18)  But be glad and rejoice for ever in that which I will create; for, behold, I will create Jerusalem a rejoicing, and her people a joy.

19)  And I will rejoice in Jerusalem, and joy in my people; and there shall be heard in her no more the sound of weeping and the sound of crying.

20)  There shall be no more afterward an infant of days, nor an old man that will not fill his days; for the child will die a hundred years old, and the sinner being a hundred years old shall be accursed.

21)  And they will build houses, and inhabit them; and they will plant vineyards, and eat the fruit of them.

22)  They will not build, and another inhabit; they will not plant, and another eat.  And as the days of a tree will be the days of my people, and my chosen ones will long enjoy the work of their hands.

23)  They will not labor in vain, nor bring forth for calamity; for they are the seed of the blessed of YAHVEH, and their offspring with them.

24)  And it will come to pass that, before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear.

25)  The wolf and the lamb will feed together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox; and the serpents’ food will be dust; they won’t hurt or destroy in all my holy mountain, says YAHVEH.


Isaiah wrote God’s words concerning the new creation… a new heaven and a new earth and a new Jerusalem, at the appearance of Jesus Christ the Savior of the world!  And it’s exactly what John is shown here in our text.

It can’t be “spiritualized”, as with those who say that our Lord’s Kingdom is “in heaven”.  And it can’t be a prophecy of the world after judgment day when the devil and death and hades are cast into the lake of fire.

In Isaiah’s new heaven and new earth there is still death … although at very advanced ages.  People are marrying and having children and building and planting and working.  And there would be justice and peace and great prosperity.

And the sounds of weeping in the old Jerusalem won’t be heard in the new; for the Lord’s people won’t be victims of ravenous animals of prey as they were in the old Jerusalem.

The Word of God through Isaiah clearly prophesies the coming Kingdom of Christ at His advent and Parousia, which is exactly what John is shown in our text.  It’s what the Churches were to anticipate.  It was a new heaven and a new earth and a new Jerusalem in which the Gospel of Jesus Christ would permeate the nations and peoples and tongues and tribes of the earth, reconciling all to Himself, and increasingly restoring the earth to Paradise.

Both Isaiah and John are shown the new heaven and the new earth and the new Jerusalem during all the years in which the Savior of the world tabernacles with His people and recreates all things for the glory of The Father.

Now I want to take you to 2 Peter chapter three.  Listen carefully to what the apostle writes to the Churches… in advance of the Parousia of the Christ:


1)      This is now, beloved, the second epistle that I write unto you; and in both of them I stir up your sincere mind by putting you in remembrance;

2)      that ye should remember the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and the commandments of the Lord and Saviour through your apostles:

3)      knowing this first, that in the last days mockers shall come with mockery, walking after their own lusts,

4)      and saying, ‘Where is the promise of his Parousia? because, from the day that the fathers fell asleep, all things just continue as they were from the beginning of the creation!’

5)      For this they willfully forget, that there were heavens from of old, and an earth of water and by water, standing by the word of God;

6)      by which means the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished;

7)      but the heavens that now are, and the earth, by the same word have been stored up for fire, being reserved against the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men.

8)      But forget not this one thing, beloved, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.

9)      The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some count slackness; but is longsuffering to you-ward, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

10)  But the day of the Lord will come as a thief; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall be dissolved with fervent heat, and the earth and the works that are therein shall be burned up.

11)  Seeing that these things are thus all to be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in all holy living and godliness,

12)  looking for and earnestly desiring the coming of the day of God, by reason of which the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat?

13)  But, according to his promise, we look for a new heaven and a new earth, wherein dwells righteousness.

14)  Wherefore, beloved, seeing that you anticipate these things, give diligence that you may be found in peace, without spot and blameless in his sight.


Peter wasn’t writing to the Churches about something that would happen centuries and millennia in the future!  He was writing about that which was imminent… that which they were to look for… anticipate.  It was near!

Our Lord and His apostles had warned the Churches of accelerating apostasy in the last days which, as we’ve seen so many times, was the forty year period between our Lord’s ascension and His Parousia/appearance in the cloud of glory.

Peter says in this passage that these mockers would be judaists… covenant apostates.  And the “Day of the Lord” would come upon this evil and perverse generation, the destruction of ungodly men prophesied in the Scripture.

Just as God destroyed the world of Noah by flood, so He would destroy the heaven and earth of first century Israel and the city of Jerusalem, in fire in a flood of His wrath.

And Peter describes it as the destruction of the present heaven and earth (the present one at the time of his writing), and the appearance of a new heaven and a new earth in which dwells righteousness.

All of the elements of the first heaven and earth would be dissolved in the heat of His fury; and the approaching conflagration is that which Peter cites to the Churches as the motive to diligence in Godly living!

At our Lord’s appearance the first heaven and earth would disappear; and a new heaven and a new earth, and a new Jerusalem would descend from God.  John sees what is about to be!

He sees the dominion of Jesus Christ over all the kingdoms and nations and tribes and tongues as He tabernacles with us.  And it is a current first century reality for the Churches!

Listen to the prophecy of Isaiah at chapter forty:


3)      The voice of one that cries out, “prepare the Way of YAHVEH in the wilderness; make level a highway for our God in the wilderness.

4)      Every valley shall be raised up; every mountain and hill shall be made low; and the uneven shall be made level, and the rough places a plain.

5)      And the glory of YAHVEH shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together; for the mouth of YAHVEH has spoken it.


It is God With Us; it is our Lord tabernacling with His people and taking dominion of His creation.


Listen to Isaiah sixty-six at verse twenty-two:


22)  For as the new heaven and the new earth, which I will make, shall remain before me, says YAHVEH, so shall your seed and your name remain.

23)  And it shall come to pass, that from one new moon to another, and from one sabbath to another, shall all flesh come to worship before me, says YAHVEH.


The new heaven and the new earth promised imminently to the Churches of the first century comprises all the years of our Lord’s dominion, during which all flesh will bow down before Him.

Multitudes promised to Abraham from all the peoples and tribes and tongues of the world will be rebirthed into Him; the whole earth will increasingly rejoice in peace and prosperity; the earth’s treasures will be brought to Him by the kings of the nations.

The paradise mandate will be consummated by the reconciliation of all things IN HIM.  And all His enemies will be put under His feet as the satan and death and hades are cast into the lake of fire.

This was imminent for the Churches of the first century.  It is a current and present reality for us!  We live in the new heaven and the new earth; and there is a new city of God which is “God With Us” – Immanuel!

This is the Revelation of what He has done, what He is about to do, and what He is now doing; and what He will do.  And it’s how our minds must work; and it’s how we must live.  It is the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  And, oh, if the Churches were preaching these things!

The seed of the old serpent are still flailing around out there against the Christ; but He just laughs!  Their “boss” is bound and sealed in the abyss until He finishes. They’re all just “little caesars”… terminally depraved mini-antichrists.  They’re anarchists!  They only have power given to them temporarily.  They will be diminished and disappear, only to be dumped later into the lake of fire with the old dragon.

 But our Lord is Alpha and Omega; He is King of Kings and Lord of Lords; and He will complete the redemption of the world.  He will reconcile all things to Himself.

This world will be in the full light of His Presence; and it will reflect the glory of its Creator.

So stay strong; hold the testimony of Jesus.  Keep His commandments.  Live life In Him.  Anticipate the fullness of His work, and rejoice in it.  You have life; and you have it abundantly!  And you have the promise that He will hold on to you in life, in death, and in resurrection.