Day 6 A Real Metaphor?
This is the sixth in a series of seven mini-articles focusing on the idea that heaven will not be an abstract disembodied place above the stars but rather a glorious down-to-earth Kingdom, here on a restored planet earth, with Christ Jesus ruling and reigning from his throne in Jerusalem.
To start at the beginning, at the first post of this series then please click here.
Please either listen to the four minute audio clip or read the notes below or both at the same time!
A commentary I was reading recently was suggesting that the Holy City, the New Jerusalem of Revelation chapter twenty-one was only a spiritual picture of the people of God, the Bride of Christ, and not an actual city itself.
Once again I am troubled by the need that some have to turn everything into an abstract metaphor.
It is certainly true to say that God dwells in the heart of the believer.
Ephesians 3:17 ‘..so that Christ may dwell in your hearts forever.’
It is also true that God’s people come together to form a metaphorical building in their own right.
Ephesians 2:21 ‘In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. and in him, you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by His Spirit.’
Paul is clearly using a metaphorical example to illustrate the coming together of God’s people through Christ Jesus.
However, this is not a description of the eternal City of God that is described so vividly in so many other parts of scripture.
Hebrews 12:22 ‘But you have come to Mount Zion, to the heavenly Jerusalem, the city of the living God.’
We may experience this heavenly Jerusalem in the spiritual realm already. In the midst of worship and prayer we may taste of the heavenly City that is to come.
One day, when Christ Jesus returns in power and glory, this Holy City will actually descend to earth and we will be invited to enter its gates and become residents in its wonderful midst.
We will no longer be tasting of the heavenly City in the heavenly dimension but we will be actually walking down her golden streets. We will actually be able to kneel down and taste of her river, running as clear as crystal. We will stand amazed at the walls of precious stones. We will kneel in adoration at the throne of such a glorious God!
The City will not be a metaphor of this or that. It will be the real thing!
Revelation 21:2 ‘I saw the Holy City, the New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride, beautifully dressed for her husband.’
Psalm 48:8 ‘As we have heard, so have we seen, in the city of the Lord God Almighty, in the city of our God. And God makes her secure for ever.’
Hasten the day!
Thank you for reading this. tomorrow we draw this series to a conclusion.