End Times - Putting the Pieces in Place
Chapter 12: New Heaven and Earth
Revelation 21:1 (NKJV) Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea.
At the beginning of the Great White Throne Judgment, the heaven (i.e., the universe including the stars) and earth will cease to exist (Rev. 20:11). According to Peter, this disappearance will take place with a great noise and fire (2 Pet. 3:10). The present heavens and earth will be worn out and no longer useful. As such, like a worn out garment, they will be discarded (Heb. 1:10-12).
After the completion of the Great White Throne Judgment, a new heaven and earth will be created (Rev. 21:1). The new earth will be the location of the New Jerusalem which will come down from God (Rev. 21:2). The New Jerusalem is also called the Bride of Christ (Rev. 21:2, 9-10). It is there that Jesus will forever dwell with His people (Rev. 21:3). All things will be made new and there will be no more death, sorrow, crying, or curse (Rev. 21: 5,3-4; 22:3). This is the eternal home for all Christians. (See additional information about replacing the present heavens and earth.)
Heaven is the name that God called the firmament (expanse, i.e., space) where He placed the sun, moon, and stars (Gen. 1:6-8, 14-18).
The term heaven in Revelation 20:11 and 21:1 refers to the universe including our atmosphere and the expanse that contains the stars. According to Strong’s Concordance, the Greek word used in these passages is number 3772, o u r a n o V (ouranos, cf. Uranus). This word means sky and by extension means heaven (as the abode of God). In the KJV translation, this Greek word is translated as heaven 268 times, as air 10 times and as sky 5 times. For example, this Greek word is translated as air in "... the birds of the air..." in Matthew 8:20 and Luke 9:58. This heaven will be shaken and the stars will fall from it (Mat. 24:29-30).
Earth in Revelation 20:11 and 21:1 refers to the planet inhabited by mankind.
Significance of the New Heaven and Earth:
The old heaven and earth will become old like a garment that is worn out and ready to be replaced (Ps 102:25-26; Isa 51:6; Heb 1:10-12). The new heaven and earth will no longer suffer the curse of sin (Rev. 21:27; 22:3).
Source of the New Heaven and Earth:
The new heaven and earth come from God.
Length of the New Heaven and Earth:
The new heaven and earth will last for eternity (Rev. 22:5).
Events Prior to the New Heaven and Earth:
The Great White Throne Judgment immediately precedes the creation of the new heaven and earth (Rev. 20:11-15; 21:1).
Events of the New Heaven and Earth:
A new heaven (universe) and earth are created to replace the old ones (Rev. 21:1). The New Jerusalem will come down from God to the new earth (Rev. 21:2). God will dwell with His people (Rev. 21:3). There will be no more death, sorrow or crying (Rev. 21:4). There will be no night in the new city since God will be its light (Rev. 21:23-25; 22:5).
God During the New Heaven and Earth:
God will live among His people in the New Jerusalem (Rev. 21:3-4; 22:3-5). He will wipe away all tears and ensure that there is no more death, sorrow or crying. God will make all things new (Rev. 21:5).
Christians During the New Heaven and Earth:
Christians will live forever with God in the new creation (Rev. 21:3, 4, 7, 27; Rev. 22:5). They will serve Him and see His face (Rev. 22:3-4).
Satan During the New Heaven and Earth:
Satan will suffer for eternity in the lake of fire (Rev. 20:10).
Beast During the New Heaven and Earth:
The Beast and the False Prophet will suffer for eternity in the lake of fire (Rev. 20:10).
Non-Christians During the New Heaven and Earth:
People who do not belong to God will be in the lake of fire (Rev. 20:15). This is the second death (Rev. 21:8).
Events Following the New Heaven and Earth:
After the new heaven and earth are created, the New Jerusalem will descend from God to the new earth (Rev. 21:2,10). God will live among His people in the New Jerusalem (Rev. 21:3-4; 22:3-5).
Scripture references for the New Heaven and Earth:
Mark 13:31; Luke 21:33; Heb. 1:10-12; 2 Pet. 3:7,10-13; Rev. 20:11; Rev. 21:1-27; Rev. 22:1-5; Gen. 1:6-8, 14-18; Ps. 102:25-26; Isa. 51:6; Isa. 65:17-25; Isa. 24:19-20
Unless otherwise stated, all Scripture quotations are from the Holy Bible, New King James Version, copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. NKJV indicates quotations taken from the Holy Bible, New King James Version, copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. KJV indicates quotations taken from the King James Version of the Bible. Numbers associated with Greek (italic) or Hebrew (upright) words refer to the corresponding words in the Strong's Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, by James Strong, S.T.D., LL.D.
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God bless you.
If you have questions or comments, please contact Sonny Bowman.