Jerusalem City Temple
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83. Jerusalem City Temple
Revelation 21.22-27

"I did not see a temple in the city because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp. The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it. On no day will its gates ever be shut, for there will be no night there. The glory and honor of the nations will be brought into it. Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb's book of life." (Revelation 21.22-27)✞

Holy of Holies

Tabernacle in WildernessJohn of Patmos lays down a unique feature of the Revelation Jerusalem, the city of God. In it, there is no "Jerusalem City Temple" at all! Considering how precious the Temple is to the Jews, it is incredible there is no Temple in the New Jerusalem. The city is built in the shape of a perfect cube, indicating that it is in itself the replacement for another cube, the "Holy of Holies." It needs no "Jerusalem City Temple" because the presence of Almighty God and the Lamb are continuously there.

Three Essential Elements

Jerusalem MountAn important principle here is that buildings do not make a church or a temple anyway! Three essential elements Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit, and Christian believers, make any place into a center of worship. Without any one of these three, there can be no church, and without these three, no gathering of people and no building is a real church. Without these three, no place can be called a place of Christian worship. There is no mention here of bricks or stones, even timber, in a church or temple!

No Lighting System

Furthermore, this new city needs no lighting system! William Barclay (1907-1978), in his Daily Study Bible, reminds us, "The city of God needed no created light because God the uncreated light was in the midst of her. Only when we see things in the light of God, do we see things as they are. Some things which seem vastly important are unimportant when viewed in the light of God. Some things which seem permissible enough turn out to be dangerous when seen in the light of God. Some things which seem unbearable become a path to glory when viewed in the light of God." "In thy light," says Psalm 36.9, "do we see the light."

Isaiah's Nation's Light

Seven Golden LampstandsIsaiah's nation's light shines in the Jerusalem City Temple. The glory of the Lord is its light, and the Lamb is its lamp. The city of God needs no created "light" because God is in the midst of her. The prophet Isaiah writes in Isaiah 60.19-21, "The sun will no more be your light by day, nor will the brightness of the moon shine on you, for the Lord will be your everlasting light, and your God will be your glory. Your sun will never set again, and your moon will wane no more; the Lord will be your everlasting light, and your days of sorrow will end. Then all your people will be righteous, and they will possess the land forever. They are the shoot I have planted, the work of my hands, for the display of my splendor." Only when we see things in the light of God, do we see things as they are. "For you are the fountain of life, in your light we see the light," says King David in Psalm 36.9. Some things which seem crucial in the moment are unimportant in the light of God.

Gentiles Will Come

Jesus Lord of GloryIsaiah has a vision in Isaiah 2.2-4, "In the last days the mountain of the Lord's temple will be established as the highest of the mountains; it will be exalted above the hills, and all nations will stream to it. Many peoples will come and say, 'Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the temple of the God of Jacob. He will teach us his ways so that we may walk in his paths.'" Isaiah speaks of the day when "all nations" will go up to Mount Zion to be taught the law and learn to walk in God's ways. Isaiah 11.12 adds, "He will raise a banner for the nations and gather the exiles of Israel; he will assemble the scattered people of Judah from the four quarters of the earth." It is Israel's privilege, says Isaiah 49.6, "It is too small a thing for you to be my servant to restore the tribes of Jacob and bring back those of Israel I have kept. I will also make you a light for the Gentiles, that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth." Nations who don't know God will run to him says Isaiah 55.5, "Surely you will summon nations you know not, and nations you do not know will come running to you, because of the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, for he has endowed you with splendor." Jeremiah 16.19-21 adds, "Lord, my strength and my fortress, my refuge in time of distress, to you the nations will come from the ends of the earth and say, 'Our ancestors possessed nothing but false gods, worthless idols that did them no good. Do people make their gods? Yes, but they are not gods!' Therefore I will teach them — this time, I will teach them my power and might. Then they will know that my name is the Lord." Gentiles will come to God from the ends of the earth.

Nations Walking Light

CrownThe nations walking light in the Jerusalem City Temple is Jesus, the Lamb of God. The kings of the earth will bring their splendor and honor into it. All peoples, nations, and languages will serve the Lord. Daniel 7.14 informs us, "He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all nations and peoples of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away. His kingdom will never be destroyed." Saint Paul writes of Christians in Philippians 2.15, "you shine as lights in the world among a crooked and perverse generation." Thousands and thousands of the saints of God will inhabit the holy city of New Jerusalem. It may well be that these saintly lives are "the light itself," which will give it its glittering glow. Christ himself is probably the light of the New Jerusalem. Zephaniah 3.9 adds, "Then I will purify the lips of the peoples, that all of them may call on the name of the Lord and serve him shoulder to shoulder." God will give all a pure language that they might with one voice call upon and praise him. Many peoples and the inhabitants of many cities will come to the New Jerusalem. Zechariah 14.9 explains, "The Lord will be king over the whole earth. On that day, there will be one Lord, and his name the only name."

No Night There

Afraid of the Dark?The Lamb will be the Jerusalem light and will cast out all darkness. The gates of the city will always be open. More than once, John of Patmos insists that there will be "no night" in the city of New Jerusalem. Many ancient peoples, like many children, are afraid of the dark. The frightening darkness will be no more in the new world, for God's presence will bring light to Jerusalem. Even in this world of space and time, according to Psalm 139.12, "even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you."

Kings Gifts

Three Kings GiftsAgain and again, a dark age has followed a period of brilliance. But in the new era, the darkness will be gone forever, and there will be nothing but light. Like the ancient prophets, John of Patmos repeatedly speaks of the new light in Revelation 21.24 "The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it." The day will come when the Lord will be king over all the earth, language groups, and nations. All other kings will bring their splendor and honor to him. The countries will indeed present their gifts to Christ in the New Jerusalem.

Nothing Impure

Corridor DoorsRevelation 21 ends with a threat, "Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb's book of life." There is a sinner who has sinned against God's will and is repentant. There is another who deliberately sins. Nothing impure will enter the City of God, nor will anyone whose name does not appear in the Lamb's Book of Life.✞

"Jerusalem City Temple"
by Ron Meacock © 2020

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