Summary of passage: The Holy City will forever be pure, free from evil. There will be no darkness as God’s glory will be our light. There will be no temple as God and Jesus will be there to worship.
9) A temple because “the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple.” The sun or moon for “the glory of God gives it light and the Lamb is its lamp.”
10a) 1 Kings 8:1-21: The temple was the place the ark of the covenant which held the stone tablets of the Law given to Moses by God dwelled–in the Most Holy Place. God (in a cloud) filled the temple of the Lord, the place meant for the Lord to dwell forever.
John 2:19-22: The temple is our body for Jesus/Holy Spirit dwells there.
1 Corinthians 6:19: “Your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God”
b) Exodus 13:21: The Lord in a pillar of fire gave the people light to continue on their journey to the Promised Land.
Psalm 119:105: “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.”
John 8:12: Jesus says,”I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
11a) “The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it.” Never will the gates be shut. No night will exist. The glory and honor of the nations will abide there. Only those saved will dwell there with no evil ever entering the city.
b) Personal Question. My answer: It’s made it more real. There will be a city and God will be there. More hope. He’s always here.
Conclusions: Good questions and good study on what is a temple and what is light in the Bible.
End Notes: In ancient times every city had a temple and most had many, many temples to their many, many gods. Have a city without a temple would be shocking to the people of the first century.
The temple is everything and every place. Before Jesus the temple was a prophecy. Then Solomon built a temple for God to dwell. Then Christ came and died, gifting believers with the Holy Spirit so we are His temple. In the Millennium the temple will be a memorial. Here the temple is everywhere.
Heaven will be pure worship. We won’t need anything of what we use now. The physical dwelling of a church is a place for sinful man to meet with God. With sin gone, we don’t need a place anymore. Nor do we need an intercessor (Jeremiah 3:16–17; Haggai 2:6–9; Acts 4:11; Ephesians 2:19–20).
Isaiah 60:19 prophesizes God is our light.
Who are the nations? Some scholars say these are the saints saved during the Millennium because they are the only saints unaccounted for. Some say they represent all believers. Isaiah speaks of them as well (Isaiah 60:3,5,11-12).
Who are the kings of the earth? Weren’t they destroyed at Armageddon? Well, scholars are unsure but this suggests some kings of the earth do turn and make it to the eternal city.
Conclusions to Revelation 21: The Bible ends up where it began. A new earth. The broken relationship between God and man heals at last and the curse from Genesis 3 is lifted. The world is as God has always meant it to be.