The Twelve Gates Of The Holy City
In the study of The Twelve Gates of The Holy City, there are a number of principles I want to share with you that will lay the foundation for our understanding of this great revelation in the bible. The First of these Principles is that the City is not a natural city but is rather a people.
The City has the glory of God because the Glory of God is His nature. In Isaiah 48:11 God said: "I will not give My glory to another!" This is a rather interesting statement in the light of the fact that the City is a people with the glory of God.
Paul said that those who have joined themselves to the Lord are one spirit with Him. We have been born of God by the impregnation of His word which brought us eternal life. Our spirit and His Spirit are now one.
What does all this mean? It means that we have always been in the loins of our heavenly Father who provided a way for us to be born of His Spirit. Peter said in I Peter 1:23, "For we have been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible seed, that is the living and abiding word of God."
The Greek word for `seed' is 'sperma' which means sperm. To be born of God we must hear the word of the lord that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and that He died for us and God raised Him from the dead and all who believes this and confesses with their mouth that Jesus is Lord shall be saved. If we believe this and confess it, we have been born of God. Rom. 8:9-10
If we have been born by the seed of God then we are His offspring and have been in His loins throughout eternity. We will not receive eternal life, we are eternal life if we have been born into His family.
As I have shared with you before, the City is a people who have the nature and glory of God. If you have been born of God you have this nature inside of you. This is why Paul said in Phillipians 2:12, "Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling for it is God who is at work in you to both will and do His good pleasure."
Throughout the Body of Christ today, there is the prevailing thought that we are still looking for a city and that city is somewhere over yonder on the other side. Most Christians are convinced that this is a literal, natural city that Jesus went to heaven to prepare for us.
The reason for this is, because men are looking through a natural mind when in reality only a spiritual mind can understand these things. Paul said in 1 Cor. 2: 9-16;
"However, as it is written: "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him"--but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man's spirit within him? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God.
We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words.
The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned. The spiritual man makes judgments about all things, but he himself is not subject to any man's judgment: "For who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct him?" But we have the mind of Christ."
Since you were a little child, everything you have heard about the last two chapters of the Bible was something that was somewhere over the rainbow. And if we are good enough we will get to go there someday.
The Lord began again to pour out His Holy Spirit at the turn of the nineteenth century and since that time millions have received the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Have you ever noticed that the teaching about end times by those who are filled with the Holy Spirit is not much different than those who haven't?
The reason this is so is because most of them just accepted what they had been taught by those without the Spirit. It was this way until thirty years ago when Spirit filled men and women began to seek for more revelation of the last two chapters of the Bible.
In order to understand the twelve gates of the city, you must understand what the city is. In the light of scriptures, the city is a people and the city, which is a people, is a dwelling place for the fullness of God.
All my life I have heard Christians talk about having a mansion to dwell in when we all get to heaven and walk on streets of gold. Why are people so concerned about having a mansion to dwell in? This word `mansion' is only mentioned in one place in the bible. In John 14:2 Jesus said;
"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."
I would like for you to take note that what Jesus went to prepare for us was a house for His Father. In that house there are many MANSIONS for Him to dwell in. Who is the house or dwelling place of the Father? Jesus, who was the Word, became flesh and dwelt among us, and was the beginning of the true tabernacle of God.
He was the stone the builders rejected, but now has become the chief corner stone. He was, Himself, a house, an abode, a habitation for all the fullness of God. Jesus was the first born among many mansions, I mean, many brethren. Jesus was looking for someone He would not be ashamed to call brethren.
The Greek word for `mansion' is `Mone' and is found in only two places in the bible. John 14:2 and John 14:23 which says;
"Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him."
The word translated here as `abode' is the Greek word `mone'. Take note that the Father and the Son are going to make their dwelling with him. Who, then, is the dwelling place for? Is it a dwelling place for us, or a dwelling place for Him? If it is for Him, then why all the concern for my dwelling place? The church has written music about this such as:
I've got a mansion just over the hilltop---Lord build my mansion next door to Jesus along the golden avenue.
We must guard ourselves against a spirit that will say when it hears this message, "I don't care what you say, this is what I believe and nothing nor nobody will ever change my mind." "I will not change and I will die believing this." Yes, and you will be buried outside the City.
Through out the scriptures there is no example of mankind being evacuated from the earth to dwell with God, but God is continually coming down to be with man. Down, not in a since of direction but descending down from a higher form of life. The invisible realm into the visible realm and dwelling with man
We see God coming down and walking with Adam and talking with him. He came down and talked with Abraham and Moses. In John 1:14 it says:
"The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen His glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth."
The bible starts with God coming to dwell with man and it ends with God coming to dwell with man! Rev 21:3 says;
"And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, "Now the dwelling of God is with men, and He will live with them. They will be His people, and God Himself will be with them and be their God."
Here is a principle that is constant from Gen to Rev, God is always coming down to you and me. It is so easy for us, however, to want to escape our responsibilities, because in order to be a habitation for God, you must be holy. But who wants to take the time to be holy?
We are the mansion of God that Jesus said He would prepare. We are living stones being built up as a spiritual house for the presence of God to dwell. Peter said in 1 Peter 1:4-6;
"As you come to him, the living Stone--rejected by men but chosen by God and precious to him--you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ."
And in Heb 3:5-6 it says;
"Moses was faithful as a servant in all God's house, testifying to what would be said in the future. But Christ is faithful as a son over God's house. And we are his house, if we hold on to our courage and the hope of which we boast."
I Cor 3:9 says;
"For we are God's fellow workers; you are God's field, God's building."
1 Cor 3:16 says,
"Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?"
11 Cor 5:1 says;
"Now we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands."
Eph 2:19-22 says;
"Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God's people and members of God's household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit."
Notice that a citizens is one who is a part of a city. In 11 Tim 2:20-21 Paul says;
"In a large house there are articles not only of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay; some are for noble purposes and some for ignoble. If a man cleanses himself from the latter, he will be an instrument for noble purposes, made holy, useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work."
The word `prepared', as used here, is the same Greek word used in Rev 21:2 which says;
"I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband."
The bride in Revelation has prepared herself by renewing her mind according to His word.
In John 14 Jesus said, "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" This sounds good but I want you to take a look at the word translated `for'. In the Greek this preposition is not `for' but `in' or `into'. Jesus was saying, "I go to prepare a place in you." Food for thought, isn't it!
I made a statement earlier that the City is a people and that these people are an abode. In the light of the scriptures we have just studied, they are a building, a house, a temple, a habitation, and a dwelling place for God in the Spirit.
Read with me again Rev 21:12 which is talking about the city and says:
"It had a great, high wall with twelve gates, and with twelve angels at the gates. On the gates were written the names of the twelve tribes of Israel."
And in verse 21:
"The twelve gates were twelve pearls, each gate made of a single pearl..."
The Second Principle is that these twelve Gates of the City are twelve experiences. As we continue to teach on the Twelve Gates of the City I want you to keep in mind that the twelve gates are twelve experiences. They are twelve entrances into experiences which will progressively unfold in you and me from the Christ nature that lives in us. This is why Paul said to the Galations, "I am traveling again until this Christ, this anointed one be formed in you." There is taking place in us, individually and corporately, a formation. There is a transformation taking place in us and we will come progressively, line upon line, precept upon precept, into the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ. There will unfold progressively out of that God nature a pattern of experiences which will follow the first born Son as an example. Through these experiences we will become this city where you and I can take up our place as a permanent abode for the dwelling of the fullness of God.
Let me give you just a taste of what I am talking about. In verse 12 of Rev. 21 it says:
"It had a great, high wall with twelve gates, and with twelve angels at the gates. On the gates were written the names of the twelve tribes of Israel."
The name of the first born son of Israel was Reuben, which means BEHOLD A SON. And this is exactly what happens when you born of God. Jesus said in John 3:3-7;
"In reply Jesus declared, "I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again." "How can a man be born when he is old?" Nicodemus asked. "Surely he cannot enter a second time into his mother's womb to be born!"
Jesus answered, "I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. You should not be surprised at my saying, 'You must be born again.'
No one gets into this city without a genuine rebirth experience.
The second gate is Simeon, which means HE WHO HEARS. What is the purpose of the infilling of the Holy Spirit? Jesus was continually saying, "He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit is saying."
Paul said in I Cor 2:12;
"We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words. The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned."
The reason why there are still Christians in the Outer Court who are still opposing this is because the God of this world has blinded their minds. The only way anyone is going to hear, is by the Spirit for the Spirit of God searches all the deep things of God. Paul said in I Cor 2:9-10;
"However, as it is written: "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him"--but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God."
Therefore, if you really want to hear something, get filled with the Holy Spirit because you will not hear much until you do.
I have just shared with you a sample of the first two gates of this Holy City. The first gate that we must enter in our quest to be like Jesus is that of a true born again experience. After being born of God and having experienced the Feast of Passover, we must then experience the Feast of Pentecost which will help us to understand the spiritual things of God.
These are just the first two gates that we must enter through in our quest and there are ten more gates, or ten more experiences, that we must enter before becoming like Him, clear as crystal.
Now, let me make a very strange statement. Outside this City are the cowardly (the dogs), the unbelieving, the vile, the murders, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and whosoever loveth and make a lie. As we learn about these gates, it is not something we talk about, but is something we must experience and walk in.
Do you really want to be a part of this City? You see, when I talk about the City, most people want to think I am talking about a Heaven or Hell situation. I am not! I am talking about an abode which God is preparing as a dwelling place for His fullness.
Now, let us look at another principle. First, I said the City is a people. Secondly, I said the twelve gates are twelve experiences. The Third Principle is that these twelve experiences will bring us into the light, and light is indicative of understanding.
Having said this, I just told you that you are blind. You have a lack of knowledge, but the good news is that the Holy Spirit is available to be our teacher and our guide into all truth. Jesus said in John 14:26;
"But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you."
He also said in John 8:31 (KJV)
"Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If you continue in my word, then are you my disciples indeed; and you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free."
And the apostle Paul said in I Cor 13:12;
"For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known."
We still have a lack of knowledge in the deeper things of God but by His Spirit He is progressively healing us of our blindness. As we come through each gate, we can make this statement, "I once was blind but now I am beginning to see!"
What is light? Rev 21:11 says;
"Having the glory of God: and her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal..."
The stone which the builders rejected has become the head of the corner and our light will be like unto Him. Would you agree that Jesus is a stone most precious? The stone that we will be made like unto is a jasper stone, clear as crystal. This stone is what we know as the diamond. In other words, in these stones there are no shadows. Only clearness. What I am saying is that this is the reality and substance of this City. In it there is no more a law of sin and death and there is no more a shadow of those things to come. When the bible says clear as crystal, it is not hoping for understanding, it is having it.
If you ever go through all the twelve gates of this City you will have come into a dimension where things are as clear as crystal. This is the Third Dimension of God's grace, the Feast of Tabernacles. How many times have read the bible and said, "That is not very clear?" Or, "Well, I am clear on that area, but what does this mean?" Or when someone is teaching you might say, "Will you clarify that for me?" You see, in the mind of Christ everything is crystal clear. Rev 22:1 says;
"And he showed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb."
As this river of His life begins to flow through these old minds of ours, it begins to revive and wash our minds clean from all the junk and debris that the world has place there. The reason our minds have been blinded is because of all the garbage of man's doctrine has been cluttering up the channel.
So, this City that Abraham was looking for is really a people. This sounds like a lot of foolishness to the natural mind that can only see natural things. We must set our minds on heavenly things and allow the Holy Spirit to give us understanding of the things of God.
The twelve gates are experiences which will bring you into the light, unto a ministry where there are no shadows. There is only the clearness and the reality of those who know their God. Rev 22:3 says that there is no more curse and as a result there is no death, there is no fear and three is no limitation. We come out of the shadows and out of darkness into the perfect light of the Lord and we have His nature.
The Forth Principle is that there is only one street in this City!!!!!
Rev 21:21 says;
"The twelve gates were twelve pearls, each gate made of a single pearl. The great street of the city was of pure gold, like transparent glass."
And verse 16 says;
"The city was laid out like a square, as long as it was wide. He measured the city with the rod and found it to be 12,000 stadia in length, and as wide and high as it is long."
The City that John saw was a cube. It is almost impossible to visualize in your mind this city with one street. It is obvious to the careful observer that the City is not a literal natural city. The City is a cube, length, width and height.
Three is a very significant number in the bible. Three is the number of The Government of Grace. Anytime there is a throne, anytime there is government, anytime there is sovereignty, you will always find threes in the bible. For example:
1. God will be manifest as Father, as Son and as Holy Spirit.
2. Jesus said, "I am the way, I am the truth and I am the life."
3. The Kingdom of God is not eat or drink but Righteousness, Peace and Joy in the Holy Spirit.
4. Jesus said, "I am the one who Was, and Is, and Is to Come."
5. Redemption is Death, Burial and Resurrection.
6. In Him we live, and move, and have our being.
7. Now abideth these three, Faith, Hope and Charity.
Here is length, width, and height. Anything that is three dimensional has substance. The number 'three' sometimes denotes that which is substantial or that which is real. The fact that the City is in the shape of a cube shows that it is a reality. A spiritual reality.
The shadow of the Third Dimension of God's grace is the Holy of Holies in Moses's tabernacle and it was 10' x 10' x 10'. In the temple of Solomon it was 20 'x 20' x 20'. It was a cube. All of the truths of the Holy of Holies which is the shadow of the Third Dimension of God's grace apply to this City. It denotes a dimension of life and ministry which is as pure as crystal with no curse, no death, no fear and no limitation.
The fact that there is only one street in this City indicates that there is only one way, one walk, and one purpose. The street of gold signifies that it is a walk that has been purified. (pure gold) It is a walk by faith and not by sight. It is a walk by the Spirit. It is a divine walk. It will be a walk in the footsteps of Jesus the pattern. It will be a walk in God because among this people there is only one walk, there is only one road, one path, one way and that person said in John 14:6:
"I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."
The Greek word translated `way' is 3598. hodos, hod-os'; appar. a prim. word; a road; by impl. a progress (the route, act or distance); fig. a mode or means:--journey, (high-) way.
So Jesus was saying, "I am the street!" There is only one way to walk. You can serve the beast and walk in your own way if you want to. If you do you will live with the dogs, the sorcerers, the whoremongers and the liars. But if you want in this City you had better do what Isaiah said and get on this highway.
Isaiah 35:8 says:
"And an highway shall be there, and a way, and it shall be called The way of holiness; the unclean shall not pass over it; but it shall be for those: the wayfaring men, though fools, shall not err therein."