Topic Study: Jerusalem, New

(November 2002 TG Entry: Jerusalem, New)

I             Center Place

Almost all members of the church recognize that Jackson County, Missouri is the center of Zion.

1 HEARKEN, O ye elders of my church, saith the Lord your God, who have assembled yourselves together, according to my commandments, in this land, which is the land of Missouri, which is the land which I have appointed and consecrated for the gathering of the saints.

2 Wherefore, this is the land of promise, and the place for the city of Zion.

3 And thus saith the Lord your God, if you will receive wisdom here is wisdom.  Behold, the place which is now called Independence is the center place; and a spot for the temple is lying westward, upon a lot which is not far from the courthouse.

D&C 57:1 – 3

Independence Missouri is 220 miles from the geographical center of the conterminous of the United States.  It certainly was not at the time Joseph Smith had this revelation.  I wonder if that is important.

II            Size

So how big is the New Jerusalem?  It is called a city, so would it be as large as say, Albuquerque, New Mexico, or perhaps as large as Mexico City?

John the Revelator was told how large it would be, if his description can be taken literally.  All of chapter 21 of Revelations is about the New Jerusalem, after the last judgment.  So it is hard to say exactly when this city gets built.  But let’s just concentrate on the size for a moment, and see if that gives us any insight into this “city”.

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,

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.

Rev. 21:10, 15, 16

The footnotes to this entry indicate that a furlong 607 feet.  If we use the weights and measures entry in the bible dictionary, we find it says that it is 220 yards long.  12,000 furlongs times 607 feet is over 7 million feet, or about 1,380 miles.  Using the yard calculation it is 2.6 million yards, and 1,500 miles in size.

If Jackson County, Missouri is the center of this “city”, it extends from nearly the western Colorado boarder well into West Virginia and from Southern Texas to the Canadian boarder.  The corners reach from El Paso Texas to Toronto, Canada.

Calling this a city in today’s language might be a bit of a misnomer.  It is a country, and a sizeable one at that.

If that is true, does it give us any insight into this city?  So now we know that the size of this place is more like a country, and that its center place, that “center stake” happens to be 220 miles from the geographical center of the lower 48 states.  Interesting.

III           Administration

John’s description sounds a bit like the church’s areas, each lead by a general authority.

14 And the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and in them the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

Rev. 21:14

IV          Infrastructure

It has its own “power plant”, that allows it to “run” all day and all night.

23 And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof.

25 And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day: for there shall be no night there.

Rev. 21:23, 25

The roads are amazing.

21 And the twelve gates were twelve pearls; every several gate was of one pearl: and the street of the city was pure gold, as it were transparent glass.

Rev. 21:21

V           Foreign Policy

It has tremendous influence throughout the world, as a model government.

24 And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it.

26 And they shall bring the glory and honour of the nations into it.

Rev. 21:24, 26

VI          Immigration

It has strict immigration control, allowing only those that are worthy to enter.

27 And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life.

Rev. 21:27

VII         Gates and Walls

The walls are very high, and very expensive.

17 And he measured the wall thereof, an hundred and forty and four cubits, according to the measure of a man, that is, of the angel.

18 And the building of the wall of it was of jasper: and the city was pure gold, like unto clear glass.

19 And the foundations of the wall of the city were garnished with all manner of precious stones.  The first foundation was jasper; the second, sapphire; the third, a chalcedony; the fourth, an emerald;

20 The fifth, sardonyx; the sixth, sardius; the seventh, chrysolite; the eighth, beryl; the ninth, a topaz; the tenth, a chrysoprasus; the eleventh, a jacinth; the twelfth, an amethyst.

Rev. 21:17 – 20

Using the weights and measures entry of the bible dictionary, 144 cubits is approximately 210 feet in height.  (How tall is a sky scraper?).  If we said a story is approximately 15 feet, the walls would be 14 stories in height.  That is a sizable wall to encompass 2 million square miles.

I wonder if perhaps these “walls” are something a little different from what we might normally think of here.  Just before describing these walls, John describes the “gates” of the city.

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.

Rev. 21:12 – 13

What if these were the “ports”, major entry points into “they city.”

  • East
  1. New York/Philadelphia
  2. Washington D.C.
  3. Boston
  • West
  1. LA/San Diego
  2. Seattle
  3. Bay Area
  • North
  1. Chicago/St. Louis
  2. Denver
  3. Detroit/Cleveland
  • South
  1. Dallas/Houston/New Orleans
  2. Atlanta
  3. Miami

If this were true, then why wouldn’t the “walls” be our tremendous sky scrapers?  Surely the “foundation” or at least the atriums of these buildings could be described as being made of these wonderful stones.  Listen again.

17 And he measured the wall thereof, an hundred and forty and four cubits, according to the measure of a man, that is, of the angel.

18 And the building of the wall of it was of jasper: and the city was pure gold, like unto clear glass.

19 And the foundations of the wall of the city were garnished with all manner of precious stones.  The first foundation was jasper; the second, sapphire; the third, a chalcedony; the fourth, an emerald;

20 The fifth, sardonyx; the sixth, sardius; the seventh, chrysolite; the eighth, beryl; the ninth, a topaz; the tenth, a chrysoprasus; the eleventh, a jacinth; the twelfth, an amethyst.

Rev. 21:17 – 20

Other References

  • Isa. 2:2 (2 Ne. 12:2) mountain of the Lord’s house shall be established
  • Isa. 40:9 O Zion, that bringest good tidings
  • Micah 4:2 law shall go forth of Zion
  • Gal. 4:26 J. which is above is free
  • Rev. 3:12 name of the city of my God … n.J.
  • 3 Ne. 20:22 it shall be a N.J.
  • 3 Ne. 21:23 that they may be a city … the N.J.
  • Ether 13:3 N.J., which should come down
  • Ether 13:6 N.J. … built upon this land
  • D&C 42:9 city of the N.J. shall be prepared
  • D&C 45:66 called the N.J., a land of peace
  • D&C 84:2 Mount Zion … city of N.J.
  • D&C 97:19 Zion is the city of our God
  • D&C 133:12 Let them … who are among the Gentiles flee unto Zion
  • Moses 7:20 Zion shall dwell in safety forever
  • Moses 7:62 it shall be called Zion, a N.J.
  • A of F 10 Zion (the N.J.) will be built upon the American continent.

 

 

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