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City of Light

Revelation 21:23-22:1

The Resurrection

Matthew 28:1–6

The city has no need for the sun or moon to shine, for the very glory of God illuminated it, and its lamp is the Lamb.

Now after the Sabbath, as it began to dawn on the first day of the week,

The nations will walk in its light. The kings of the earth bring the glory and honor of the nations into it.

Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to see the tomb.

Its gates will in no way be shut by day (for there will be no night there),

Behold, there was a great earthquake,

and they shall bring the glory and the honor of the nations into it so that they may enter.

for an angel of the Lord descended from the sky and came and rolled away the stone from the door and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow.

There will in no way enter into it anything profane, or one who causes an abomination or a lie,

For fear of him, the guards shook, and became like dead men. The angel answered the women, “Don’t be afraid,

but only those who are written in the Lamb’s book of life.

for I know that you seek Jesus, who has been crucified.

He showed me a river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb, in the middle of its street.

He is not here, for he has risen, just like he said.


City of Light + Resurrection

City of Light + Resurrection

The Doorway to Eternity

Resurrection: Light Source

Revelation 21 City of Light Matthew 28 ResurrectionCompare the City of Light whose lamp is the Lamb with the Resurrection scene in Matthew 28. It begins with a dawning on the first day of the week. At first glance, it seems only a coincidence these passages both begin with light.


Look further to the center of the Matthew 28 passage. An angel descends from heaven, rolls away the stone from the door, and sits upon it. The city of light promises, “they may enter.” The doorway and the entrance add a second point of connection.

Look right before the door: the “gates” of the city will in no way be shut. The resurrection describes a great earthquake. Assuming these passages work together, the earthquake is the opening of the gates of the city. It will never closed again.

Look right past the door: nothing “profane” will ever enter into the city. The guards shake with fear and become like dead men. Assuming these passages work together, perhaps the guards are not allowed in the city. Perhaps death itself is not allowed in the city. Or, death is no longer a barrier.

Book of Life

Two Marys come to see the tomb. Perhaps they now walk in the light of the glory of Christ, with a place prepared in the city of light.

Look opposite. Perhaps those who seek Jesus, like these two women, are the ones whose names are written in his book of life.

Words of Revelation

Look to the end: a river of the water of life, shining like crystal, flows from the throne of God and the Lamb in the middle of its street. The angel says, Jesus “isn’t here, for he has risen, just like he said.” Connect the dots. The river of water of life are the words of the risen Christ.

Dawning. Doorways. Inner gates. Outer guards. A river. A resurrection. To me, it’s becoming more and more clear these passages somehow work together. You can feel it. The words have a synergy to them. The words have power.

This is the power of parallels, which I call Strings. Two passages — or threads — properly aligned, reveal something a single passage does not. They weave together to reveal something new: like a river of life, shining like crystal.

This is just the first example. Click the Shepherd link, or the right arrow below, to compare the Shepherd scene from the birth of Christ.

To explore these passages directly, click this button: