All Things New
Key Verse: “He that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful.”
THIS PORTION OF JOHN’S vision depicts conditions in existence after the close of the Gospel Age, when Satan will be bound. “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. And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.”—Rev. 21:1-4
The ‘new heaven’ is symbolic of the spiritual rulership operative during the Messianic Kingdom under the glorified Christ Jesus and his church—“When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory.” (Matt. 25:31) It will replace the present ecclesiastical dominion and its attendant system of false worship which has been promoted by Satan, who is the god of this world. (II Cor. 4:4) The ‘new earth’ refers to a new social order in which mankind will practice righteousness and live in harmony with his neighbor. “When thy judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness.” (Isa. 26:9) “They shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the Lord.” (Jer. 31:34) The ‘sea’ is also a symbolic term that pictures the masses of people who are not under governmental or religious restraints, but have anarchistic tendencies. “The wicked are like the troubled sea, when it cannot rest, whose waters cast up mire and dirt.” (Isa. 57:20) There will be no more ‘sea.’
Our Key Verse refers to the regeneration of as many of the human family as would be willing to receive the benefits of Christ’s sacrifice and ultimately attain everlasting life in a perfect physical environment on this planet.
The glorious heavenly city—the New Jerusalem—seen by John in the vision, describes Christ and his bride. The many descriptive places connected with this magnificent arrangement are beyond our ability to fully appreciate and understand. Nevertheless, we are assured that God’s eternal purpose will be fulfilled as a result of the faithfulness of Christ and his body members during their respective earthly sojourns.—Rev. 21:9-23
The closing portion of this chapter underscores the blessedness of the perfect harmony that will then exist throughout the universe, when God’s will shall be done on earth as it is done in Heaven. (Matt. 6:10) “The nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it. And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day: for there shall be no night there. And they shall bring the glory and honour of the nations into it.” (Rev. 21:24-26) What a time that will be when the Heavenly Father and his Son, Jesus Christ will receive unending praise from all creation!