Revelation 21:1-27 Part 8

Revelation 21:1-27 Part 8


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.


The new Jerusalem, the “holy” one, that John is shown (in contrast with the first one) is coming out of the heaven from God having been made ready as a bride for her husband.  She is adorned with her God’s glory (verse eleven).  Lo!  The tabernacle of God with man.

All things are to be made new, John writes to the Churches.  The first heaven and the first earth will have gone away; and the first Jerusalem would no longer exist.

Our Lord Jesus Christ had been given all authority in the heaven and the earth; and at His soon-to-come Parousia, these are the things that He – the Word of God – would bring to pass!

The elect sons of Jacob in the Churches scattered in the nations would have understood the language: “Lo, I make everything new!”  (It was spoken previously!)  They would have understood the mighty power of God the Son, the Word of God Made Flesh, Who had made atonement for the sin of the world!  They would have understood the language of God through the prophets regarding the shaking of the heaven and the earth at the death, resurrection, ascension and Parousia of the Son of God/Son of Man.

Having received John’s Revelation of Jesus Christ, they would have understood that, at His appearance at the end of the age, everything would be shaken, and everything would be made new.  It’s what they were to anticipate!  It’s what the judaizers and the false prophets denied!  The serpent was raging against the will and purpose of God and His Church in the nations!

At the awesome and terrible appearance of God’s Messiah in the cloud of glory at the end of the age (all of which was prophesied from the beginning), the “firsts” would flee from His Presence, Jerusalem and the promised land of Israel would cease to exist… no longer be; the Dayspring would arise upon all the cursed earth; the satan would be cast into the abyss; and all things would be made new!

Because of the curse of God and the gross depravity of mankind, nobody before the advent of The Christ had access to God in His holy tabernacle in the heaven.  And the temple, on the dome of the rock, in the city of Jerusalem, in the land of Israel, manifested that unapproachability!

He was separate from them.  No one could be in His Presence until the Son of God/Son of Man poured out His Own blood for the sin of the world.  And the old would pass away, and all would be made new! 

Then the tabernacle of God would be with us!  All of this was shortly to be, John wrote to them!  Mankind in Christ would have direct and immediate access to God.  It’s what the entirety of the Scripture foreshadowed and prophesied!

The death, burial, resurrection, ascension and Parousia of the Christ of God was the “axis” of time and creation.  Everything before that was to disappear; and by His authority everything after that is made new! 

And the sons of Jacob, in Christ, would have understood the language and anticipated the event that was about to occur in the fullness of the time.

There would even be a new covenant (in continuity with the old), and a new covenant sign and seal (which we celebrate today)!  Everything would be made new!

God is with us; we are In Christ our sacrificial Lamb and High Priest Who provides our perfect and complete access all the time!  And He gathers us to Himself on the first day of every week to rejoice in His so great salvation, and to wonder in this awesome new creation, and to grow in grace, and to be sanctified into one body that has the same mind and speaks the same things, and anticipates the completion of the salvation of this world….  It’s a gathering from which flows the River of Life which waters every desert wilderness on this earth.


This is all the Gospel of God concerning His Son Jesus, the Anointed One of God.  And He shall reign for all the years until kings and nations and tribes and tongues acknowledge Him – the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.  He is the Word of God, His Strong right arm Who accomplishes the eternal will and purpose of God.

And here in the text we see the perfections of the New Jerusalem that John sees coming from God; and, by extension, the “land” of the new Israel, which is the whole world!  It is a new heaven and a new earth… not like the first one; for the firsts would disappear.

The first Jerusalem, the glorious, golden city of God, on the mountain of God, in the land of paradise (Israel), and its temple on the dome of the rock, was to be the “light” to the world which existed in cursed darkness… a world which was left to the domain of the serpent of old.

Her temple on the dome was to be the image of the Presence of God above His tabernacle in the heaven… an image of inaccessibility except by sacrifice.  And only once a year, one priestly representative could enter the holy place in the tabernacle.

The sin of mankind and the curse of God excluded man from being in His Presence; and the sacrificial system was prophetic of that which would be at the appearance of the One Sacrificial Lamb Who would take away the sin of the world in order that there be open access to Almighty God.  He made it so, that God would be with us!

That, in essence, was the first Jerusalem.  But at the Parousia of the Christ, that first Jerusalem would cease to exist.  All things would be new; the Lamb of God would have already made the sacrifice for sin; and the old Jerusalem and its temple, in the land of paradise, would be destroyed by the sword and by fire!  She was a harlot, and worse than all the nations that walked in gross darkness.

And there would be a new one… a new Jerusalem coming from God in a new heaven and a new earth – not the “image” of an inaccessible God above His tabernacle in the heaven, but a new Jerusalem in the new heaven and the new earth in which sin and the curse had been paid for by the Lamb of God. 

At His death, burial and resurrection and ascension, there was a mighty shaking of the heavens and the earth; and all things are made new!  And God would be with us, John writes.  Not above the firmament over His tabernacle in the heaven… but WITH US!

There would be a new heaven and a new earth.  And a new Jerusalem would come from God; for the sin of the world had been paid for by the Savior of the World.  Our Lord Jesus Christ had satisfied the wrath of God toward mankind and His creation; and the curse had been lifted.  And rather than tabernacling above, and separate from, and unattainable by, cursed mankind and creation, He would tabernacle with US!

Never could we have approached Him; but now He makes His abode with us!

And in continuity with the firsts, there would be a new heaven and a new earth and a new mountain (Christ’s dominion), and a new city of God from which the light of the glory of God would shine upon all the earth and its kings and nations, and from which would flow the water of life into every dry land. 

And through all the years decreed, all the earth would be the paradise land!  The mountains would be made low and level; and the valleys would be raised up level, and the highways to the New Jerusalem would be filled with the peoples and tongues and tribes; and the multitudes would fill up the promise to Abraham!  And Lo!  All Israel would be saved.

The old, you see, was just a copy… a manmade copy of that which would be.  The new would be the real Jerusalem and the real paradise land; for God would tabernacle with us.

Once more… John is shown the new Jerusalem coming out of the heaven from God.  She would be God tabernacling with us!  Before, He tabernacled in the heaven (above the heaven) and was unapproachable by man.  But at the appearance of the God/man, Jesus Christ, having poured out His blood, and having entered once into His Presence for the sin of the world, God would now be with us!  The time was near (John wrote nineteen hundred and forty-five years ago).

And there would be no temple in her; for no longer would there be a need for one!  No sacrifices; no holy of holies; no priestly representatives going in and out; for all in Christ would be priests in His Presence; for God Himself would be with us; and His people could approach Him boldly - anytime.

But the fearful and unfaithful and the fornicators and the idolaters and the lying prophets would never be permitted to enter.  They are not written in the Lamb’s book of life; they are not “in Him”; they are the seed of the serpent; and they are reserved for the eternal lake of fire in the day of judgment.

At verse eleven John begins his description of the new Jerusalem as the very radiance of the glory of God.  It is “illumined” with His glory.  Let’s read some Scripture and hear some prophecy of these things that were about to be:

Here’s 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 dry places.

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

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


The radiant glory of our God is the brightness of His Person – His holy Presence.  His glory shall be revealed to all flesh… every people, tongue and tribe. And all flesh shall see it.

And from Isaiah chapter sixty:


1) Arise, shine; for your light is come, and the glory of YAHVEH shall rise upon you.

2) For, behold, darkness covers the earth, and gross darkness the peoples; but YAHVEH will arise upon you, and his glory shall be seen upon you.

3) And nations shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising.

4) Lift up your eyes round about, and see: they will all gather themselves together, they will come to you; your sons shall come from far, and your daughters shall be carried in arms.

5) Then you shall see and be radiant, and your heart shall thrill and be enlarged; because the abundance of the sea shall be turned unto you, the wealth of the nations shall come unto you….

11) Your gates also shall be open continually; they shall not be shut day nor night; that men may bring unto you the wealth of the nations, and their kings led captive….

14) And the sons of them that afflicted you shall come bending down unto you; and all they that despised you shall bow themselves down at the soles of your feet; and they shall call you The City of YAHVEH, The Zion of the Holy One of Israel.

15) Whereas you have been forsaken and hated, so that no man passed through you, I will make you an eternal excellency, a joy of many generations….

18) Violence shall no more be heard in your land, desolation nor destruction within your borders; but you shall call your walls “Salvation”, and your gates “Praise”.

19) The sun shall be no more your light by day; neither for brightness shall the moon give light unto you: but YAHVEH will be unto you an everlasting light, and your God your glory.

20) Your sun shall no more go down, neither shall your moon withdraw itself; for YAHVEH will be your everlasting light, and the days of your mourning shall be ended.

21) Your people also shall all be righteous; they shall inherit the land for ever, the branch of my planting, the work of my hands, that I may be glorified.


There’s the prophecy of the new Jerusalem – the “holy” one – the tabernacle of God with man!  It’s exactly what John sees, as written in our text (and was shortly to be).  It’s in the same language!  And John sent it to the Churches before the appearance of Jesus Christ in the cloud of glory!  They would have immediately turned to Isaiah to read it!  And the prophecy of Isaiah was written seven hundred years before the birth of Jesus!

Listen now to the prophecy of Ezekiel chapter one:


26) And above the firmament that was over their heads was the likeness of a throne, as the appearance of a sapphire stone; and upon the likeness of the throne was a likeness as the appearance of a man upon it above.

27) And I saw as it were glowing metal, as the appearance of fire within it round about, from the appearance of his loins and upward; and from the appearance of his loins and downward I saw as it were the appearance of fire, and there was brightness round about him.

28) And the appearance of the bow that is in the cloud in the day of rain, so was the appearance of the brightness round about. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of YAHVEH.  And when I saw it, I fell upon my face, and I heard a voice of one that spoke.


That’s Ezekiel’s opening description of what he was shown above the firmament of God’s tabernacle in the heaven.  It had been shown previously to only a very few.  It was a view of the radiant brightness of the Presence of Almighty God.  It was sent to Israel in captivity in about 550BC.  And the language is strikingly similar to all that John is shown here in our text, isn’t it?

The new Jerusalem coming down from God was like a precious stone, radiant and gleaming with the glory of God, like a jasper stone and crystal clear.

Just a quick note here about the word translated “jasper”.  I don’t think that there’s any Biblical reason that John would choose to pick one stone of the twelve to describe the radiance of the new Jerusalem coming down from God.

More than likely he went back to the original Hebrew word (pronounced ‘yashpheh’) which means “glittering” or “gleaming”.  In most places in the Scripture it is translated “jasper”.  And so it is in Greek. But, once again, I don’t consider that to be his intent here.  It’s more certain that he sees the new Jerusalem as the radiance of a gleaming, crystal clear stone of infinite worth which, once again, is the original meaning of the Hebrew word.

It’s also of great value to us to remember the description of the first paradise – the garden into which man was created.  Moses’ language is greatly abbreviated; but the land was filled with gold and wonderful fragrances and gleaming stones of a variety of colors equal to the colors of the bow around the Presence of Almighty God.  They reflected His radiant glory!

Listen once more to the prophecy of Ezekiel – this time at chapter twenty-eight.  This is the premier passage of prophetic Scripture describing the holy land as an original edenic paradise filled with glimmering precious stones.

And remember, Ezekiel was a prophet of God to Israel in captivity after the temple and the city and the land had been destroyed by the first beast of God’s history:


Ezekiel hears these words from God, and he writes them to Israel in Babylon:


13)You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone  covered you, the sardius, the topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper, the sapphire, the emerald, and the pearl; the workmanship of your  mountings and of your settings was crafted in gold; in the day that you were created they were prepared.

14)You were the anointed guardian cherub that covers; and I set you, so that you were upon the holy mountain of God; you had walked up and down in the midst of the gleaming stones.

15)You were perfect in the day that you were created, but unrighteousness was found in you.

16)By the abundance of your traffic, violence filled the midst of you, and you did sin; therefore I did cast you as profane out of the mountain of God; and I did destroy you, O guardian cherub, from the midst of the glimmering stones.

17)Your heart was lifted up because of your beauty; you corrupted your wisdom with all of your brightness.  I will cast you to the ground; I will lay you before kings, that they may look at you.

18)By the multitude of your iniquities, in the unrighteousness of your traffic, you profaned your sanctuaries; therefore will I bring forth a fire into the midst of you; it will devour you, and I will turn you to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold you.

19)All they that know you among the peoples shall be astonished at you: you will become a terror, and you will nevermore have any being.


Just as God had posted a cherub to guard the garden of Eden, Jerusalem was the anointed guardian cherub of God’s paradise on earth – Israel.  But she was full of iniquity and profaned the tabernacle of God.  So God banished the cherub and caused the entire paradise land to cease to exist.  It would nevermore have any being.

But Isaiah had prophesied the new Jerusalem – the “holy” Jerusalem – which would be the fullness of God’s covenantal promise to Jacob – Israel.  Listen to it from chapter fifty-four:


10)  For the mountains may flee, and the hills be removed; but my lovingkindness shall not depart from you.  Neither shall my covenant of peace be removed, says YAHVEH Who will have mercy on you.

11)  O you afflicted one, tossed to and fro, and not comforted, behold, I will set your stones in beautiful colors, and lay your foundations with sapphires.

12)  And I will make your pinnacles rubies, and thy gates pearls, and your wall precious stones.

13)  And all of your children shall be taught of YAHVEH; and great shall be the peace of your children.

14)  In righteousness you will be set: you shall be far from oppression, for you shall not fear; and far from terror, for it shall not come near you.


Once again, the language of the new Jerusalem that John sees coming down from God!

In numbers of Biblical texts, the bow is the very radiance of the Glory of God in every color; and the description of the new Jerusalem includes every gleaming stone in every variety of color, and all in settings of crystal clear gold!  The stones are obviously the adornment of the true bride of Christ prophesied throughout Scripture.  And it is God-With-Us, and all made to be by the Person and work of Jesus Christ our true Treasure.

Although adorned with edenic beauty, the first Jerusalem, the prostitute of the nations, met with a complete and inglorious end.  But the promise of God to Jacob and to Abraham would be filled up in the new, and holy, Jerusalem, which would be adorned with gleaming stones reflecting the glorious Presence of Almighty God-With-Us.

The garden of Eden was filled with shining gold and littered with precious, glistening stones of beautiful colors in great variety… all reflective of God’s glory and His faithful covenant.

The very same language is used by God in describing the first Jerusalem.  She was to be an edenic paradise to reflect His glorious light to the world.

Now, here in The Revelation, the new Jerusalem (about to be, as John writes) is described in even greater detail with the exact same language as was the garden of Eden and, later, the land of Israel!

She is the daughter of Zion (the new Jerusalem), the true and elect bride of Christ, holy and adorned with the shining glory of God Himself; for He is With us.

You and I who are In Christ – when we look on the brightness of gold, and breathe in the wonderful scents of the creation, and enjoy the colors of the rainbow and the stones that He has made, we need to remember that we live in the new heaven and the new earth… the new, and holy, Jerusalem… the paradise of God in which He abides with us.

We are adorned with the righteousness of Christ.  He is our righteousness; for we live in Him.  And we share in His character and His virtue!

As the apostle Peter said in His letter to the Churches, our Lord is the corner foundation “stone” of the new Jerusalem; for He is the One Who causes it to be perfectly square and perfectly level.  Its perfections “rest” in Him.

And he said that we who belong to Him are gleaming white “stones” in the new tabernacle of God, from which shines the Light to every dark place on the earth.

The first Jerusalem corrupted the entire earth with the wine of its fornication.  But the new Jerusalem has nothing corrupt in it!  And the kings and rulers and tribes and tongues will walk in its light and bring their glory into it.

And the River of Life will flow from it into every dry and desert wilderness.  And up will spring everything green and lush, and great trees will flourish in which the birds of the sky will make their nests.

And nations will beat their swords into plowshares.  And through all the years there will be increasing peace and prosperity until the multitudes will acknowledge the King of Kings and Lord of Lords!  And all the peoples and tribes and tongues will rejoice in the new heaven and the new earth… and in the new Jerusalem.  And all the earth will be the edenic paradise of God, shining in the reflection of His glory.

Since all the “firsts” have passed away, and all things are made new, so there is a new covenant sign and seal.

Circumcision – the sign and seal of the covenant given to Abraham after he faithed in the coming Savior of the world, is old.  It has passed away.

Passover, the celebration of the body and blood of the sacrifice that set Israel at liberty, is old.  It has passed away.

Now, the Savior of the World has appeared, and He did offer His body and pour out His Own blood, in order that those of the uncircumcision be credited with righteousness through faith, just as Abraham was credited with righteousness before he was circumcised!

The first signs and seals of the covenant are passed away, you see; for the Savior has set the world at liberty!  The nations and tribes and tongues of all the earth have been set at liberty by the Savior of the world.  And so, all Israel shall be saved!

The new sign and seal of the covenant is the bread and the wine, signifying and sealing the promise of resurrection out of death unto life in Christ for every single one who belongs to Him.  The sign and seal is the guarantee that none will be lost!

In Him (our Prophet, Priest and King) we have been set at liberty to worship our God in spirit and in truth; for In Christ the wrath and curse of God has been satisfied; and we have free access to Him, and He abides with us.  In Christ the world belongs to us because it belongs to Him.

In Him we anticipate the full reconciliation of all things to the glory of God… even our bodies at the resurrection!

Lo!  I make all things new.”