The Kingdom From Heaven 8
The Kingdom From Heaven, 8
And had a wall great and high, and had twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels, and names written thereon, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel: (Revelation 21:12)
The massive wall of the new Jerusalem prevents us from seeing the wonder and beauty of the Paradise within the gates of pearl.
God calls our attention to the wall. He does that because He wants us to understand that no sin or rebellion shall be permitted in His Kingdom. The inhabitants of the holy city are not sinners who are shielded from God's judgment by the blood of atonement. They are new creatures, having been transformed into the image of the Lord Jesus Christ.
When we think about the Garden of Eden we realize that indeed all we associate with Heaven was at one time present on the earth. It even was true that God Himself was available for those who desired fellowship with Him.
What was lacking? Certainly nothing in the environment. The problem was the inability of the human beings to resist the temptation to disobey God.
It would not be wise to readmit Adam and Eve to the garden until they become temptation-proof, so to speak. Neither would it be wise to admit sinning Christians to Paradise on the basis of grace.
We might think that once we are in Paradise we no longer can sin. Well, Adam and Eve were in Paradise when they fell! There is no passage of Scripture that declares admittance to Heaven, to Paradise, will prevent our sinning.
The only guarantee we will not sin in Heaven or in the new world to come is that through Jesus Christ we have learned to overcome sin. If we, through Christ, can overcome sin in this present wicked world, we can overcome sin anywhere in God's creation .
This precisely is what the great jasper wall symbolizes—the iron righteousness, fiery holiness, and stern obedience to the Father that have been created in God's victorious sons during their sojourn on the earth.
The following is addressed to Christians:
Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness [immorality], Idolatry, sorcery, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. (Galatians 5:19-21)
"Shall not inherit the kingdom of God."
Does this mean after we have received Jesus we cannot practice these works and still inherit the Kingdom of God?
This is what the incorruptible, eternal Word states!
The grace of God in the Lord Jesus changes us so we begin to do the will of God. In this manner we are made candidates for citizenship in the new Jerusalem. Accepting Jesus as our Savior is the means by which we are forgiven and then learn to keep the laws of the Kingdom.
Our goal is to make our eternal home in the new Jerusalem, which is the Kingdom of Heaven. We attain this goal by taking up our cross and following Jesus everywhere He leads us. The resulting total transformation of all that we are makes us eligible for residence in the Kingdom of Heaven.
Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. (Revelation 22:14)
Only those who serve the Lord from the heart are members of the Kingdom of Heaven. (from The Kingdom From Heaven)
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