New Defender's Study Bible Notes
21:3 tabernacle. The ancient tabernacle in the wilderness, where God “dwelt,” and occasionally communicated with His earthly people Israel, was merely a type of the eternal tabernacle, the new Jerusalem, where God will personally dwell forever with all His people from every nation. Compare Leviticus 26:11; Zechariah 2:11. Also remember that when Jesus “tabernacled” among us (John 1:14) in the days of His flesh, He was “Emmanuel,” meaning “God with us,” this also being a type of His future continual dwelling among us (Matthew 1:23).
21:4 all tears. Note Isaiah 25:8-9 and Revelation 7:17. Our tears of sorrow will in that day be turned into tears of joy and thanksgiving.
21:5 true and faithful. Note Revelation 3:14; 19:11.
21:6 beginning and the end. The Lord Jesus Christ is both Creator (Colossians 1:16) and Consummator (Colossians 1:20) of all things (Romans 11:36). Note also Revelation 1:8,11; 2:8; 3:14; 22:13).
21:6 water of life. This is both literal water (Revelation 22:1, 17) and the spiritual water of everlasting life (John 4:14; 7:37-39).
21:7 He that overcometh. Seven wonderful promises were made to “him that overcometh” in the letters to the seven churches (Revelation 2:7,11,17,26; 3:5,12,21), and these are all summed up here. We shall share in the very inheritance of Christ Himself (Hebrews 1:2; Psalm 2:8; Romans 8:17; I Peter 1:4,5; I Corinthians 3:21-23). As sons of God by adoption by God’s grace (Romans 8:15), we share in the infinite inheritance of the one who is Son of God from eternity.
21:8 fearful. This fear refers not so much to physical cowardice as to lack of true faith which faith must be evidenced by public commitment to Christ. Note Mark 4:40; II Timothy 1:7; Matthew 10:32; Romans 10:9-10).
21:8 unbelieving. Final, unchanging, refusal to believe on Christ as Son of God and personal Savior is the only ultimately unforgivable sin (John 3:18).
21:8 whoremongers. The “abominable” are those who practice “abominations”—that is, the blasphemous and licentious practices associated with idolatry. “Murderers” are those guilty, not of manslaughter or of slayings in warfare of self-defense, but of willful criminal homicide. “Whoremongers,” in the meaning of the Greek pornos, refers not only to pimps but to any who practice or promote sexual activity outside of marriage.
21:8 sorcerers. The “sorcerer” (Greek pharmakeus) is one who uses drugs to induce pseudo-religious fantasies and occult experiences.
21:8 idolaters. “Idolaters” are those who are devoted to any object, spirit, person or practice which takes the place of God in their lives.
21:8 liars. “Liars” are those who practice deception and falsehood, especially false teachers (II Peter 2:1-3; Jude 4,13).
21:8 fire. This is the last reference to “fire” in the Bible. The first was in Genesis 19:24. Both also involve brimstone (see on Revelation 20:10) and both involve divine judgment on sin.
21:8 second death. See note on Revelation 20:14.