Citizens of the Heavenly Jerusalem!
Isaiah 62: 1-12
For Zion’s sake will I not hold my peace, and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not rest, until the righteousness thereof go forth as brightness, and the salvation thereof as a lamp that burneth.2 And the Gentiles shall see thy righteousness, and all kings thy glory: and thou shalt be called by a new name, which the mouth of the LORD shall name.3 Thou shalt also be a crown of glory in the hand of the LORD, and a royal diadem in the hand of thy God.4 Thou shalt no more be termed Forsaken; neither shall thy land any more be termed Desolate: but thou shalt be called Hephzibah, and thy land Beulah: for the LORD delighteth in thee, and thy land shall be married. 5 For as a young man marrieth a virgin, so shall thy sons marry thee: and as the bridegroom rejoiceth over the bride, so shall thy God rejoice over thee. 6 I have set watchmen upon thy walls, O Jerusalem, which shall never hold their peace day nor night: ye that make mention of the LORD, keep not silence, 7 And give him no rest, till he establish, and till he make Jerusalem a praise in the earth. 8 The LORD hath sworn by his right hand, and by the arm of his strength, Surely I will no more give thy corn to be meat for thine enemies; and the sons of the stranger shall not drink thy wine, for the which thou hast laboured: 9 But they that have gathered it shall eat it, and praise the LORD; and they that have brought it together shall drink it in the courts of my holiness.10 Go through, go through the gates; prepare ye the way of the people; cast up, cast up the highway; gather out the stones; lift up a standard for the people. 11 Behold, the LORD hath proclaimed unto the end of the world, Say ye to the daughter of Zion, Behold, thy salvation cometh; behold, his reward is with him, and his work before him. 12 And they shall call them, The holy people, The redeemed of the LORD: and thou shalt be called, Sought out, A city not forsaken.
This message is to encourage you to think of heaven and how sweet our fellowship with other members of the family of God would be in heaven. In this message you will have an idea of who will be accepted into God’s coming kingdom and who will not.
In Isaiah 62, Zion represents heaven where God resides while Jerusalem represents where the people of God dwell [Psalm 48:1-3]. Zion also represents God’s permanent or immovable throne. Kings and princes, including us believers will stand before Him in judgement in Zion. Zion is not the focus of this exhortation. An explanation of Isaiah 62:1 suffices for now.
Verse 1 in Isaiah 62 may be read as follows:
“For heaven’s sake (Zion, where God’s throne is) will I (God speaking) not hold my peace, and for earth’s sake (Jerusalem, where God’s people resides with His name) I (God speaking) will not rest, until the righteousness thereof go forth as brightness, and the salvation thereof as a lamp that burneth.”
Note at the time David spoke Psalm 48, David’s earthly Zion was a stronghold. It was impregnable, that is no enemy could break into it. It was like a fortified garrison, yet he conquered and ruled his big kingdom from Zion.
What about Jerusalem? Zion was where king David dwelt but his subjects lived in Jerusalem [2 Sam. 5:1-10]. Who are those that would live in God’s Jerusalem (illustrated by David’s Jerusalem)? The passage in Isaiah 62 gives us a clue by a seven-sided prophecy, four of which have already been fulfilled. The prophecies when Isaiah the above verses in Isaiah 62 can be extracted from the passage as follows:
1. The coming captivity of Israel and Judah.
2. Their liberation back to their own land.
3. The birth, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
4. The scattering of the Jews & destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70 and their gathering together in 1948.
5. The second coming of Jesus Christ.
6. Realization of the heavenly Jerusalem which will be an earth-wide tabernacle when God’s kingdom comes to dwell again with men on the earth.
7. The new name which the people of God would have that would grant them access to that heavenly city.
The last three in the above list have not been fulfilled, from which we see that Jerusalem has a special place in end time prophecy and it also connotes the physical abode of believers in the new earth. It has another purpose which has to do with the citizenship and special name of believers at the end of time. The focus of this message is the seventh which is: what will the general name the people of God will have at the end of time? Other scriptures also vividly tell us what our common name will be. This should not be strange because heavenly things can be illustrated by human experiences on the earth.
Have you ever wondered why some people want to perpetuate their names after their death? It is not a bad thing if it is done with good intentions. When a parent has children, he rejoices over the progress of his children. The parent is especially happy that the child is a member of his family and bears the name of that family. In the same way God has His name tag placed on all His children in Heaven. God wants to perpetuate His name on His children throughout all eternity. That is what makes them to be part of His family. These are those whom He has laboured for by the death and resurrection of His Son, Jesus Christ. Such people have accepted His salvation and righteousness. In the above passage, God identified the members of the church as His people, both Jews and Gentiles whom He rejoices over. Let God Rejoice over You with His new Name!
Isaiah was an Old Testament prophet but in his time, he received a revelation beyond the forthcoming captivity of Israel. He foresaw not only the freedom from captivity of the people of Israel which happened nearly 200 years after his death, but also the liberation of the redeemed, both Jews and Gentiles from the grips of Satan when God’s Kingdom, the heavenly Jerusalem ultimately becomes a reality on the earth. David lived before Isaiah so Isaiah saw in the spirit some fine details of what David saw. The time for this ultimate redemption is unknown. Only God knows when it will be. However, other scriptures make us understand that the time is very near. The signs of His second coming are all evident, the prevalence of iniquity being one of them. Jesus will come when God is satisfied that His righteousness will be a praise in the earth. That is perhaps why Jesus was not definite, saying only the Father knew the end of the age.
The people of God constitute the general assembly of believers, that is, those believers who have already gone to be with the Lord and those still living [Heb. 12:18-24]. Those who have gone to heaven have already fulfilled their mission on earth. God is already rejoicing over them, not weeping because they have triumphed and are awaiting their rewards in the judgement of the saints.
Someone may ask! Does God weep! Yes He does when He sees His people are being openly led into captivity. Recall that Jesus wept over Jerusalem because the people who lived in His time, and we see it continue today in the Judaic world, missed the opportunity of accepting Him as their Messiah (Luke 13-34-35; Luke 19:41; Matt. 23:37-39]. Before destroying the inhabitants of the then world with water in Noah’s time, it grieved God in His heart that He made man, that is God lamented and wept in the heart. God lamented that Israel was being carried away into captivity shortly after Isaiah’s prophecy which was replicated on earth when Jesus wept over Jerusalem, saying the people of that generation would witness His prophecy come to pass. As He said it, so it happened in AD 70.
On the day of Judgement of believers, after Christ second coming, believers will receive His new name or His name becomes their new Identity. It is His identity that you carry that will allow you to dwell with Him in heaven [Isaiah 62:2]. There will be no rebels in heaven. Anyone who does not have His identity will be transported straight to hell fire. The angels God has assigned to do this will carry out this assignment with dispatch, because before God nothing unholy can dwell. If you take the prophecy of Isaiah as a pinch of salt, how about hearing it from the resurrected Christ!
Jesus told the Church of Philadelphia in Rev 3:12
12 Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.
Someone else may ask, of what use will be the name or how will God distinguish one person from another. Just as Jesus spoke to the church at Philadelphia, He spoke to the church of Pergamos:
17 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it. When we correlate these verses in Revelation with that in Isaiah 62:2, believers will both have a first and last name (or surname). Do you want or look forward to having His new holy name for you? Pray the following prayers.
Prayer of Consecration and Commitment
Oh Lord, fill my up to overflowing measure with your Holy Spirit and power to live a life of holiness and consecration to you and you only. Lord, fill me up with your truthfulness because you are the God of truth. Expose to me every area of imperfection in my heart towards you. Let me have an unending love for you. Remove every form of pride from my heart. Bring across my way, people of like-mindedness. I will not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. Let me honour those who have made you their Lord and Master. Thank you for creating me spirit, soul and body. I dedicate my body as your vessel. Make me a vessel of high prize like gold in your household ready to serve other believers. Let me walk with you with a perfect heart and make companionship with those that walk perfectly with you in Jesus’ name. Amen.
1. Oh Lord, fill me with your Holy Spirit. Soak me, drench me, and saturate me with your presence and power in Jesus’ name.
2. Gentle Holy Spirit; make me a friend of God all the days of my life in Jesus’ name.
3. Oh Lord, give me a broken heart and a contrite spirit. Let my soul pant for your righteousness like the deer pants for streams of water in Jesus’ name.
4. Lord Jesus, purge my heart with your precious blood. I empty myself of every form of pride. I embrace you with my whole heart. I lay all my burdens on you in Jesus’ name.
5. Lord, make your righteousness to run deep in my heart. Holiness and godliness will be my desire all the days of my life in Jesus’ name.
6. Lord, let your Kingdom reign in every area of my life. Make me a model Christian and form the character of Jesus in my life in Jesus’ name. Amen.