100. BRIEF ANALYSIS.
The reason why the New Church is meant by "the New Jerusalem coming down from God out of heaven" (Rev. 21), is that Jerusalem was the metropolis of the land of Canaan, and there was the temple, the altar, there the sacrifices were offered, thus Divine worship, to which every male throughout the land was commanded to come three times a year. Then, because the Lord was in Jerusalem, and taught in its temple, and afterwards glorified His Human there; hence it is that by "Jerusalem" is signified the church. That by "Jerusalem" is meant the church, is very clear from the prophecies in the Old Testament concerning a New Church to be established by the Lord, wherein it is called "Jerusalem." The following passages only shall be quoted, from which anyone of interior reason may clearly see, that by "Jerusalem" is meant the church:
Behold I create a new heaven and a new earth, and the former shall not be remembered; behold I will create Jerusalem, an exultation, and her people a gladness, that I may exult over Jerusalem, and be glad over My people. Then the wolf and the lamb shall feed together: they shall not do evil in all the mountain of My holiness (Isa. 65:17, 18, 19, 25).
For Zion's sake I will not be silent, and for Jerusalem's sake I will not rest, until her justice go forth as splendor, and her salvation as a lamp that burneth. Then the Gentiles shall see thy justice, and all kings thy glory; and thou shalt be called by a new name; which the mouth of Jehovah shall utter; and thou shalt be a crown of beauty, and a tiara of a kingdom, in the hand of thy God. Jehovah shall be well pleased in thee, and thy land shall be married. Behold thy salvation shall come, behold His reward is with him: and they shall call them the people of holiness, the redeemed of Jehovah; and thou shalt be called a city sought out, not deserted (Isa. 62:1-4, 11-12).
Awake, awake, put on thy strength, O Zion; put on the garments of thy beauty, O Jerusalem, the city of holiness; for henceforth there shall no more come into thee the uncircumcised and the unclean. Shake thyself from the dust, arise, sit down, O Jerusalem. The people shall know My name in that day; for I am He that doth speak, behold it is I. Jehovah hath comforted His people, He hath redeemed Jerusalem (Isa. 52:1, 2, 6, 9). Shout O daughter of Zion, be glad with all the heart, O daughter of Jerusalem; the king of Israel is in the midst of thee: fear not evil any more; he will be glad over thee with joy, he will rest in thy love, he will eat over thee with shouting; I will give you for a name and a praise among all the people of the earth (Zeph. 3:14-17, 20).
Thus saith Jehovah, thy Redeemer, saying to Jerusalem, thou shalt be inhabited (Isa. 44:24, 26).
Thus saith Jehovah, I will return to Zion, and dwell in the midst of Jerusalem, whence Jerusalem shall be called the city of truth, and the mountain of Jehovah of Hosts the mountain of holiness (Zech. 8:3, 20-23).
Then shall ye know that I am Jehovah your God, dwelling in Zion, the mountain of holiness, and Jerusalem shall be holiness. And it shall come to pass in that day, that the mountains shall drop must, and the hills shall flow with milk, and Jerusalem shall sit from generation to generation (Joel 4:17-21).
In that day shall the branch of Jehovah be for ornament and glory; and it shall come to pass that he that is left in Zion, and he that remaineth in Jerusalem, shall be called holy, every one that is written for life in Jerusalem (Isa. 4:2, 3). In the last days the mountain of the house of Jehovah shall be established on the head of the mountains, for out of Zion shall go forth doctrine, and the Word of Jehovah from Jerusalem (Micah 4:1, 2, 8).
At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of Jehovah, and all nations shall be gathered to Jerusalem for the name of Jehovah, neither shall they go any more after the confirmation of their own evil heart (Jer. 3:17).
Look upon Zion, the city of our stated feasts, thine eyes shall see Jerusalem, a quiet habitation, a tabernacle that shall not be destroyed; the pins thereof shall not be removed forever, and the cords thereof shall not be torn out (Isa. 33:20); besides other passages, as (Isa. 24:23; 37:32; 66:10-14; Zech. 12:3, 6-10; 14:8, 11, 12, 21; Mal. 3:2, 4; Ps. 122:1-7; Ps. 130:4-6).
That by "Jerusalem" in the above passages is meant a church to be established by the Lord, and not the Jerusalem inhabited by the Jews, is plain from every particular of the description in the passages quoted; as that "Jehovah God was about to create a new heaven and a new earth," and also "Jerusalem" at the same time; and that "this would be a crown of beauty, and a tiara of a kingdom"; that it is to be called "holiness," and "the city of truth, the throne of Jehovah," "a quiet habitation," " a tabernacle that shall not be taken down"; that "the Wolf and the lamb shall feed together therein," and that "the mountains shall drop down with new wine, and the hills flow with milk," and that "it should remain from generation to generation"; besides other circumstances, as respecting the people therein, that they should be "holy, all written for life," and should be called "the redeemed of Jehovah." Moreover, all those passages treat of the coming of the Lord, and particularly of His second coming, when Jerusalem shall be such as is there described; for heretofore she has not been married, that is, has not been "the Bride and the Wife of the Lamb," as "the New Jerusalem" is said to be in the Apocalypse. The former or present church is meant by "Jerusalem," and its beginning is there described in these words in Daniel:
Know and perceive, that from the going forth of the Word, unto the restoring and building of Jerusalem, even unto Messiah the Prince, shall be seven weeks; afterwards in sixty and two weeks it shall be restored, and the street and the ditch shall be built, but in distress of times (9:25).
But its end is described by these words:
At length upon the bird of abominations shall be desolation, and even to the consummation and decision it shall drop upon the devastation (ver.27). This last passage is meant by the following words of the Lord in Matthew:
When ye shall see the abomination of desolation foretold by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place, let him that readeth note it well (chap. 24:15).
That "Jerusalem" in the places above adduced, does not mean the Jerusalem inhabited by the Jews, may appear from those places in the Word, where it is said of that city that it was entirely destroyed, and that it was to be destroyed, as in (Jer. 5:1; 6:6, 7; 7:17, 18, seq.; 8:6, 7, 8, seq.; 9:10, 11, 13, seq, 13:9, 10, 14; 14:16; Lam. 1:8, 9, 17; Ezek. 4:1 to the end; 5:9 to the end; 12:18, 19; 15:6-8; 16:1-63; 23:1-40; Matt. 23:37, 38; Luke 19:41-44; 21:20-22; 23:28-30); besides many other passages; and also where it is called "Sodom" (Isa. 3:9; Jer. 23:14; Ezek. 16:46, 48); and in other places.