The Daily Word of Righteousness

The New Jerusalem, #13

A bruised reed shall he not break, and the smoking flax shall he not quench: he shall bring forth judgment unto truth. (Isaiah 42:3)

We have a little sister, and she hath no breasts: what shall we do for our sister in the day when she shall be spoken for? If she be a wall, we will build upon her a palace of silver: and if she be a door, we will inclose her with boards of cedar. (Song of Solomon 8:8,9)

There are passages that appear to imply some believers who are spiritually weak and sickly will be strengthened in the age to come.

But it should be pointed out that there are many other passages that state those who know the Lord's will and do not do it shall be beaten with many lashes. If we are lazy we will be thrust into outer darkness. If we neglect our salvation we will not escape. If we are lukewarm we will be vomited from the Lord's mouth.

The Scriptures and history are clear that to whom much has been given, of him will much be required (consider the suffering of the Jews!).

Most of us Christians are aware that the peoples of the world will be punished severely. Those who sin against God will experience tribulation and wrath.

What is not as commonly understood is that the strongest of the New Testament (and Old Testament) warnings against sin are not directed against the nations but against Israel, against the Lord's people.

Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace? For we know him that hath said, Vengeance belongeth unto me, I will recompense, saith the Lord. And again, The Lord shall judge his people. It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. (Hebrews 10:29-31)

"The Lord shall judge his people."

For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. (II Peter 2:20)

The Christian Gospel has to do with the Kingdom of Heaven. The Kingdom of Heaven is the new Jerusalem. It is a city, a holy city.

Perhaps this is fairly well understood by Christian people. What may not be as clearly understood is that not only are we to enter the Kingdom of Heaven but the Kingdom of Heaven must enter us.

There are people who profess Christ but in whose heart are the ways of Hell. Such cannot possibly enter the new Jerusalem. Those who are filled with Hell will enter Hell. Those who are filled with the Kingdom of Heaven will enter the Kingdom of Heaven.

Jesus explained that the Kingdom does not come as an external Paradise, a land of delights into which untransformed people can bring their unrighteousness.

And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you. (Luke 17:20,21)

"The kingdom of God is within you."

To be continued.