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The Future of Jerusalem - A Key to Understanding Bible Prophecy

Present day Jerusalem is destroyed.  
So is the end?  
Do we queue the sad sorrowful music?  

No, the Lord God has declared the Jews and the City of Jerusalem are His (Exodus 19:5 and Psalm 48:1-3).  That is no light thing, the Lord is not a man, he is Jehovah.  In our age of relativism, we have lost the weight and meaning of vow, honor, and declaration.  He hasn't.

(Author's Note:  In "Jerusalem's Coming Destruction", we explored Torah Scriptures that foretell the destruction of Jerusalem as we know it today.  In "A Key to Understanding Bible Prophecy", we learn that the period of the Scriptures is finite and covers the age of man on earth.  This work builds upon those blogs.  Longer than most blogs I write, I could find no way to break this in pieces and have it still be coherent.)

Here's today's spiritual truth and new revelation.

There are 2 Cities call Jerusalem in the Millennium
Both Cities are Made by God & Come Down from Heaven

Like York and New York, they are different places!  New Jerusalem and Jerusalem aka the Holy City are not always specified in the text, so the reader has to know the context and the differences to determine which place is being referred to in which passage.  Understanding the similarities and differences make that task easier.

It's accepted that New Jerusalem is made by God (John 14:2-3) but I've never read any teaching that states that the earthly Jerusalem is also made by God and descends from Heaven but here is what I've found and I welcome you to consider.

Artists Rendition of New Jerusalem Over the Earth
How are they alike:

  1. They are both physical places
  2. God dwells with His People in both of them (Rev 21:3 and Rev 22:1)
  3. They both shine with the Glory of God (Rev 21:23 and Rev 22:5)
  4. There is no night in either place (Rev 21:25 and Rev 22:5)
  5. Both have 12 gates (Rev 21:12 and Ezekiel 48:30)
  6. Both descend from Heaven (Rev 21:2 and Rev 21:10)

How are they different:

  1. Jerusalem the Holy City is on the Earth (Rev 21:3, Ezekiel 40:2, Rev 20:9)
  2. New Jerusalem is probably above the Earth due to it's enormous size
  3. The Holy City is 1 mile square (Ezekiel 48:30)
  4. New Jerusalem is about 1400 miles square (Rev 21:16)
  5. People in physical bodies can enter the Holy City (Ezekiel 46:9) (Rev 22:14)
  6. No one in a physical body can enter New Jerusalem (Rev 21:27)
  7. The Holy City gives light to the region and its neighbors (Rev 22:5)
  8. New Jerusalem gives light to the Earth (Rev 21:24)
  9. The Holy City has a functioning and working Old Testament Style Temple (Ezekiel 45:13-15,17)
  10. New Jerusalem does not have a Temple (Rev 21:22)
  11. The Gentile Nations will come and bring sacrifices to the Holy City  (Zechariah 14:16-19)
  12. People in physical bodies, who keep God's commandments come and eat from the tree of life (Rev 22:14)

The Holy City during the Millennium
A New Heaven and a New Earth:

Earthly Jerusalem aka the Holy City:

Rev 21:1-3 "And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away ; and there was no more sea.  And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying , Behold , the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God."

  • We must understand the new Heaven and the new Earth; the earth is wiped out after the Tribulation.  
  • New Heaven and New Earth are quotes from the Old Testament: Isaiah 65:17 and Isaiah 66:22. 
  • In context this is clearly the coming age of Israel - the thousand year reign of the Lord on the Earth; the Millennium. 
  • The next verse says she is adorned like a bride, not that she IS the bride.  
  • Finally, God proclaims that his tabernacle is with men and that he will dwell with them.  
  • We know men don't dwell in New Jerusalem (Revelation 21:27) 

New Jerusalem aka Heaven:

In the same chapter, John is looking at the new earthly city when we move forward six verses to see that an angel of the Lord takes John to see the bride of the Lamb.  This is clearly a different place, a different city, yet both have descended out of Heaven made by God.

Rev 21:9-10 Then came one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues and spoke to me, saying, “Come, I will show you the Bride, the wife of the Lamb.” 10 And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great, high mountain, and showed me the holy city Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from God.

Rev 21:11-21 Outlines the physical dimensions of the city.  The Sheer Size of New Jerusalem make it impossible 1450 miles square... this is equivalent to the entire east coast of the US to the Mississippi River.... Our atmosphere is only 300 miles tall, what would attaching a gigantic cube due to a perfectly balanced spinning planet?  How would the rest of the world receive light if the city was on earth? The below picture is not exactly to scale but you get the idea of how massive New Jerusalem is.

A Scale Model of the Size of New Jerusalem
Jack Kelley, a well respected teacher, put the resolution of this question quite eloquently:  With the differentiation of these two Holy Cities, the apparent conflict between Jewish and Christian eschatology is resolved. Israel was promised that one day GOD would come to Earth to dwell among them forever, while the Church is promised that Jesus will come to take us to heaven to live with Him there. Both promises come true.  Since Ezekiel specifically quoted the Lord’s promise to dwell among the Israelites forever (Ezekiel 43:7) and then described the new Holy City, while Jesus promised to return for the Church to take us to be with Him (John 14:1-3), they must have been talking about two different destinations. They were. Heaven is the New Jerusalem where we will dwell with the Lord forever, while the Holy City on Earth is Jehovah Shammah where God will dwell in the midst of His people Israel forever.. (source The Coming Temple)

(Note, in the coming blogs, we will develop the concepts of God's creation of the cities, the future temples, and life in the Millennium.)
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3 comments :

  1. Very interesting. I look forward to digging into this on my own and reading the future blogs.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much! The works were originally produced in 2015 on my little blog. Unsealed has been gracious enough to let me share my writing with a larger audience. I'm repackaging the work for this series but if you are like me and get a nice juicy new study, you can follow the link and the full study is already published. http://abigailanddolley.blogspot.com/search/label/Millennial%20Bible%20Study

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