The Eternal City
2 February 2022
When I was a boy, say 75 years ago most every home had a framed wall-hanging which proclaimed that this place was Home Sweet Home.
Many of the hangings were crocheted or knitted by some old grandma or perhaps a student of grandma but the saying proclaimed how wonderful it was to have a home.
It was the place where one lay their head upon a pillow, pulling a feather quilt up to their chin and perhaps placing their feet on a hot water bottle for that was popular in those days as our homes were not heated so well.
It was a place of comfort where all ones’ things were from clothes to furniture, to books, to cooking implements, to bathing facilities and especially our radio.
It was a place where mother and father were and sisters and brothers perhaps.
It was a place of rest.
We all have our places.
I counted my places the other day and the count came to fourteen.
Places ranging from my place of birth at home at 1722 North Whipple Street in Chicago, Illinois where the doctor delivered me on the kitchen table because of its height to a house in the middle of a Chicago prairie.
It was an idyllic place for a young boy to play, a house heated with coal and wood stove, with no central heated hot water except the water my mother heated in a big copper boiler on a 4-burner kerosene kitchen stove, therefore justifying only one weekly Saturday-night bath, and since I was the youngest I went into the water last.
I remember this place with an ice box instead of a refrigerator which we children liked because we could steal pieces of ice off the ice man’s truck, and cold it was.
And I remember fondly the milkman coming several times a week especially in the winter when the cream of the bottle was pushed out the top of the bottle ready for little hands to wisk it away when momma wasn’t looking.
We moved on up when we moved to a second-floor suburb apartment over a beer joint in Berwyn, Illinois, then to a Rhode Island NAVY Barracks where I lay my head on bunk beds with 60 other young men.
Then on to California with a beautiful new bride, then to Nebraska for the Navy and onto to Sasebo, Japan, then to Virginia, then to Danang, Vietnam for a year and on to home sweet home in good old Milton where I have had four places to lay my head.
My hope is that my present home of fifty years will be the last place that I lay my head followed by the eternal last place, that place that Jesus promised to all His children in:
John 14:2,3, In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.
That word “mansions” is discredited in many Bible versions in favor of the word room but listen to my analysis in a few minutes and you may think mansions is a appropriate selection.
Now we are told in scripture that Abraham is our father of faith and Abraham too looked for a place, a place not only in a foreign land, a promised land but he looked further than that for we are told in:
Hebrew 11:8-10, By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went. By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise: For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.
Foundations is plural, so very descriptive of what we are given in Revelation Chapter 21 which tells us of twelve foundations.
Now Jesus said I go to prepare a place for you.
Jesus is indeed the builder and maker of the city that Abraham looked so longingly for.
The most detailed description of this city is given to us in:
Rev 21:1,2, And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. 2 And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. 4 And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. 5 And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful.
Rev 21:9-16, And there came unto me one of the seven angels which had the seven vials full of the seven last plagues, and talked with me, saying, Come hither, I will shew thee the bride, the Lamb's wife. 10 And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, 11 Having the glory of God: and her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal; 12 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: 13 On the east three gates; on the north three gates; on the south three gates; and on the west three gates. 14 And the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and in them the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb. 15 And he that talked with me had a golden reed to measure the city, and the gates thereof, and the wall thereof. 16 And the city lieth foursquare, and the length is as large as the breadth: and he measured the city with the reed, twelve thousand furlongs. The length and the breadth and the height of it are equal.
Now the holy city, this heavenly Jerusalem, is pictured as coming down after the conclusion of the millennium.
The rapture is passed, the seven-year tribulation is long gone, the devil and his followers have been cast into the Lake of Fire, the thousand-year rule of Christ is complete, the Great White Throne Judgement is over, and now the Bride of Christ descends to the Earth.
The city, the Bride, is described as it will appear in the eternal state.
Some believe that the heavenly Jerusalem will be a satellite city throughout the millennial reign of Christ and in this city resurrected and translated saints will live.
And those in their natural bodies, sinners, will live on the millennial earth itself.
While there is no clear Scripture which supports this concept it would solve a number of problems related to the relationship of resurrected and translated beings to those still in their natural bodies who will conduct themselves in a normal way on the earth.
Undoubtedly if this is the case, those in the heavenly Jerusalem will be able to commute to the millennial earth throughout the thousand-year reign of Christ and participate in its activities.
I won’t go any further in this direction for my purpose tonight is to focus on the size of this mighty city for we are told its base and its height are immense in size.
Notice the dimensions are given in a horse racing measurement, that of furlongs, a furlong being about one city block which is 660 feet, one eighth of a mile.
My knowledge of this comes from Chicago where you will find 8 blocks in one mile.
So, by doing the proper math this city is 1500 miles square and 1500 miles high.
The area of its base is 2,250,000 square miles.
The area of the United States is 3,119,000 square miles so the city’s base would cover almost three quarters of the Continental United States.
If the city is a cube its volume is three billion, 375 million cubic miles.
The Earth’ surface area is 196.9 million square miles and if the volume of this cubed city would be distributed over the whole of the Earth’s surface it would be 17 miles high.
If the city is a pyramid its volume would be a third of this or only one billion, 125 million cubic miles and if the volume of this pyramidal city would be distributed over the whole of Earth’s surface it would be 5.7 miles high.
A nonprofit organization called the Population Reference Bureau estimates that about 107 billion people have ever lived.
Only God knows the true figure, but this number was arrived at by using known populations of the earth during the past few centuries and projecting those figures further back.
Jesus said the gate into this city was narrow and few there be that find it.
What is few, 1%, 5%, !0%?
Let’s just say for estimating purposes 5% find the way.
Five percent of 107 billion is 5 billion, 350 million people who will dwell in the city.
If you take this figure and divide it into the cubed and pyramidal volume you will get .63 cubic miles per person and .21 cubic miles per person.
So, if the city is a cube the space per person would be a space 4524 ft. on each side, an area of 469 acres 4524 feet high.
And if the city is a pyramid the space per person would be a space 3136 ft. on each side, an area of 225 acres 3115 feet high.
It may be that all living spaces will be on the outside of the cube or pyramid so all living spaces will have a view of the sky.
If you want to check my figures, I can send you my work sheet shown here.
Now these figures are fanciful you would admit, but they are just given to show you how mighty a city this is.
It will be full of parks, golden streets, beautiful trees filled with fruit, rivers, thrones, gates, walls, beautiful jewels, and glorious lights.
But most of all it is a city of our God, who needs no temple and a city of our Lord Jesus Christ!
I love that promise of my Savior, I go to prepare a place for you.
Our Lord Jesus Christ is the Groom preparing a place for His bride, and what a place!
If you believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, there is a place reserved just for you, prepared as only our Lord can!
Let Us Pray!