“These shall be the exits of the city: On the north side, which is to be 4,500 cubits by measure, 31 three gates, the gate of Reuben, the gate of Judah, and the gate of Levi, the gates of the city being named after the tribes of Israel.32 On the east side, which is to be 4,500 cubits, three gates, the gate of Joseph, the gate of Benjamin, and the gate of Dan. 33 On the south side, which is to be 4,500 cubits by measure, three gates, the gate of Simeon, the gate of Issachar, and the gate of Zebulun. 34 On the west side, which is to be 4,500 cubits, three gates, the gate of Gad, the gate of Asher, and the gate of Naphtali. 35 The circumference of the city shall be 18,000 cubits. And the name of the city from that time on shall be, The Lord Is There.”
The New Jerusalem is called Jehovah-Shammah. The LORD is there. The LORD is not just with His church in a general ‘feel good’ way. No, He (The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) is with us in a very real manifest way. He is in us and around us, but we also have the privilege of fellowship or communion with God. We are not separated by a veil, it is not only the high priest who may enter into the holy of holies once a year, where God rested His feet on the footstool. We can boldly approach His throne, where He is seated! The high priest would enter that room with trepidation, having performed rites and sacrifices of atonement so he could perform the rites over Israel. Isaiah 66:1-2 reads,
“Thus says the Lord:
“Heaven is my throne,
and the earth is my footstool;
what is the house that you would build for me,
and what is the place of my rest?
2 All these things my hand has made,
and so all these things came to be,
declares the Lord.
But this is the one to whom I will look:
he who is humble and contrite in spirit
and trembles at my word.”
But we can boldly approach God’s throne. We have full assurance that we are forgiven. We have Jesus Christ who lived, died, and rose again. He is compassionate toward us. Hebrews 4:14-16 read,
“Since then we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. 15 For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. 16 Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”
Believer, you have God abiding in you. You have His very present help. (Psalm 46:1). You have His friendship, blessings, provisions, authority, and salvation. Believer, you have full and complete friendship with Him. As Jesus’ friend, he gave you authority to do great works in love of people. Because you and I are to love people the way, our King loves people. John 15:12-17 reads,
“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.13 Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command you. 15 No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you. 17 These things I command you, so that you will love one another.”
In the old days, God’s people were His servants, but we have been elevated to friends who can confidently approach His throne and ask Him anything. That is pretty awesome! We are completely united, enmeshed with God and with one another. In John 17:20-26 Jesus said it like this,
“I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, 21 that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. 22 The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one, 23 I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me. 24 Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory that you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world. 25 O righteous Father, even though the world does not know you, I know you, and these know that you have sent me. 26 I made known to them your name, and I will continue to make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.”
Do you see how we are so absolutely united with God, so intricately interwoven and enmeshed that He is always with us? We can lean away from Him, we can feel far off from Him but He never leaves us.
Revelation 21:1-3 describes The New Jerusalem this way,
“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. 2 And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people and God himself will be with them as their God.”
Believer, this city is your promise. You are the city of God! It is for you. God assured you time and again He would always be with you. He will never forsake you. Isaiah 60:19-20 illustrates our promise this way,
“The sun shall be no more
your light by day,
nor for brightness shall the moon
give you light;
but the Lord will be your everlasting light,
and your God will be your glory.
20 Your sun shall no more go down,
nor your moon withdraw itself;
for the Lord will be your everlasting light,
and your days of mourning shall be ended.”
Remember you are the dwelling place of God, you are the Temple of God. (1 Corinthians 3:36-17). He is There! Believer, you may sometimes feel alone, but that is a lie. God is with you. Go ahead and acknowledge His presence, His beautiful glorious actual presence with you. You are His People and He is your God.