On the new earth, there will be no night (Isaiah 60:19-20). Of course there cannot be any night - the light comes from God himself (21:23). In him there is no darkness (1 John 1:5).
Here, as often elsewhere in the Bible, the night and the darkness are word-pictures for evil things. It is not hard to see why. Thieves are active at night; so are many other people who carry out evil acts. They use the darkness to hide their evil activities, so that nobody can catch them. In ancient cities, it was often dangerous to be outside by night.
At night, the city guards closed the gates of their city. The purpose was to protect the city from attack while its people were asleep. However, the New Jerusalem has no night and no darkness. There is no danger of attack, so it is never necessary to shut the gates.
The gates are not without purpose, however. They are the means by which people enter the New Jerusalem. The people come from every nation. It is very wonderful to be in the city of God (Psalm 48:1-3; Isaiah 2:1-4). The people will bring with them the best things from their countries, as gifts to give honour to God.
The rulers and the people from every nation will serve God at that time. There will be nothing evil on the new earth. Formerly, Israelís people tried hard to separate unclean or common things from what is holy (see for example, Leviticus chapters 11 and 15; Mark 7:1-4). The meaning was that Godís people must not be guilty of any evil or false behaviour (Mark 7:14-23). In the New Jerusalem, all will be holy. Nobody will carry out evil activities; nobody will speak lies. It is the home of Godís people. He has recorded their names in his book: the Lambís (Christís) book of life (Revelation 3:5; 13:8 and 20:12).
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© 2016, Keith Simons.