Living Hope for a New Day

MEMORY SELECTION: “Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people. —Revelation 21:3

SELECTED SCRIPTURE: Revelation 21:1-7; 22:1-5

REVELATION 21:1 reads, “And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first [former, Diaglott] earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.” In studying Revelation we must remember that it is a highly symbolical book. The new heaven referred to is the coming spiritual authority, headed by Christ and his church, which will be the channel of blessing in the kingdom. The new spiritual arrangement will replace the present one. The present heaven is controlled by Satan, who is the God of this world.—II Cor. 4:4; Eph. 2:2

The new earth is the new social arrangement of the kingdom here on earth. This will include the theocratic government, which will be administered by the resurrected ancient worthies. The present social arrangement that is to pass away is controlled by those whom Satan uses and whose tools are Satan’s goods—selfishness, pride, and greed.

The sea, in the Bible, pictures the restless mass of humanity. (Isa. 17:12,13; Luke 21:25) But our text tells us that the people will no longer be restless and dissatisfied because, as the Prophet Haggai, speaking of this time of the kingdom, states, “The desire of all nations shall come: and I will fill this house with glory, saith the Lord of hosts.”—Hag. 2:7

Revelation 21:2 reads, “And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.” A city, in the symbolic language of the Bible, pictures a government; and in a very particular way Jerusalem pictured the seat of the Jewish government, which was by God’s authority. Our text speaks of the New Jerusalem, or new government—not the one that was familiar to the Jews, but one coming down from God out of heaven. In other words, this is to be a government established by God and to be under the influence and control of Christ and his church. They will use as their earthly representatives God’s faithful servants of the past, the ancient worthies.—Isa. 1:25-27

Revelation 21:3 reads, “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.” When God began to deal with his people Israel, he instructed them to build a Tabernacle, and this—with Moses, and Aaron and his sons as the priests—was the symbol of God’s presence with the people. The nation was governed from this arrangement. God spoke to the priests and they conveyed the message to the people.—Exod. 25:9; 39:42,43; 40:34-38

In Exodus 40:34 the text states that “the glory of the Lord filled the Tabernacle.” And so, in our text in Revelation, the thought is that the tabernacle which comes down from heaven will be filled with the glory of the Lord. He will dwell with the people, in that the government will be a representation of his character of justice, wisdom, love, and power. His perfect laws will be perfectly administered by perfect representatives.

Revelation 21:4 reads: “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.” These conditions will be the result of the righteous reign of Christ and his church during the thousand-year reign of Christ’s kingdom.—I Cor. 15:24-26; Isa. 25:6-10; Mic. 4:1-4

Dawn Bible Students Association
|  Home Page  |  Table of Contents  |