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. 4 He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
5 And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” 6 And he said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give from the spring of the water of life without payment. 7 The one who conquers will have this heritage, and I will be his God and he will be my son.
I read an article the other day which reported that there are about three times as many weddings scheduled for this summer as usual. Apparently, the pandemic has created some pent-up demand. I think it is true for my extended family as we have three slated for this summer alone. We will be admiring a lot of beautiful brides walking down an aisle.
John sees the city of Jerusalem, adorned as a bride for her husband, coming down out of heaven. In the following paragraphs we get a description of the city as a physical space. This first part of the chapter which is before us describes the city as the people who live there. Here they come, a mighty host, all of them dressed up for the best day of their eternities.
Why are they all dressed up? It is because God dwells in their midst, no longer accessible only by faith but now by sight. He wipes away all their tears, the tears of shame, grief, pain, and suffering. Death is banished along with all suffering. The former things pass away, only the new things are left, the things which God started in you in your baptism, the things which He commenced when he died and rose again. I am willing to put on my best tie and polish my shoes for that. I could rent a tuxedo or buy a new shirt. This is the wedding of the millenia!