THE JEWELS OF HEAVEN based on Rev. 21:9-21
By Glenn Pease
Henry Schober of Edmonton, Canada, was cutting a loaf of bread to make a sandwich, when he his amazement he found a diamond engagement ring.
It was later appraised at $700.
As a result of a lot of publicity, the owner of the ring was found.
It is not likely that gem favored bread will ever catch on, but the fact is, there are many gems in the Bread of life--the Word of God.
Not just gems of truth, but actual literal gems.
There are hundreds of verses in the Bible dealing with over 50 jewels and precious stones.
It would take hours just to read all that the Bible has to say about gems.
The KJV has an astonishing total of 1,704 references to gemstones and minerals under 124 Greek and Hebrew names.
You could devote a life time to the study of this subject.
There are three main lists of gems in the Bible, and one of them takes us back to Eden where we thought the only clothes worn were drab animal skins.
But there is a lot we do not know about what was going on in the heavenly realm at that time.
It seems that the archangel Lucifer was rebelling against God in pride, and was cast out of heaven before he came to deceive Eve through the serpent.
What is amazing is the beauty of this servant of God.
Satan is the first being that we have any record of who was clothed with precious stones.
28, he is described as the model of perfection in beauty.
Then in 28:13 we read, "You were in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone adorned you: ruby, topaz and emerald, chrysolite, onyx and jasper, sapphire, turquoise and beryl.
Your settings and mountings were made of gold; on the day you were created they were prepared."
This verse makes it clear that jewelry was not man's invention at all.
God was making jewelry of great beauty, with gold and precious stones, before man was ever created.
He made Satan a fabulous garment of jewelry when he was created, which was long before man was created.
So the study of jewelry is not only prehistoric, but preexistence of the universe.
In other words, jewels existed in God's realm of existence in eternity before God created what we know as the universe.
Jewels are heavenly elements that existed before the universe, and will be a part of heaven when the universe, as we know it, is no more.
There are fascinating histories of great jewels, and how they have been passed down from one royal family to another for centuries.
All of them will end up in the royal family of God, who will, in eternity, possess all the jewels God has ever made.
God was a jeweler before He created our world, and thus we see from the start, God is a great lover of jewels.
This explains why He is so extravagant with them in the walls of the New Jerusalem.
If artists and architects got together to plan the New Jerusalem, they may have thought that a crown of diamonds and rubies over each of the twelve gates would give an elaborate and luxurious look to it.
Who would ever dream of twelve strings of precious stones circling the entire 5,600 miles of the city walls.
I have calculated that this is equivalent to a necklace which is 67,200 miles long.
You don't have to get out your Guinness Book of Records--I can assure you that this is the longest piece of jewelry ever created.
It would stretch over two and one half times around the world.
So let's face this fact--God is fanatical about jewels.
If you think it is a waste of time to study jewels, you are mistaken.
God loves us to study them, just like anyone enjoys people who learn to love their hobby.
God made jewels play a major role in the life of His Old Testament people, in the second great list we see this.
The high priest was to wear a special breast piece when he came into the presence of God.
It was to be a marvelous work of art made of gold and fine linen.
Then we read this in Ex. 28:17-21, "Then mount four row of precious stones on it.
In the first row there shall be a ruby, a topaz and a beryl; in the second row a turquoise, a sapphire and an emerald; in the third row a jacinth, an agate and an amethyst; in the fourth row a chrysolite, an onyx and a jasper.
Mount them in gold filigree settings.
There are to be 12 stones, one for each of the names of the sons of Israel, each engraved like a seal with the name of one of the 12 tribes."
God's people had to know their gems in order to obey God, and make this very unusual garment.
The high priest would go into God's presence with these 12 shining jewels, and by means of them, God would reveal His will to the high priest.
I visualize it as a sort of code.
The high priest would ask God questions and God would light up the jewels in a pattern to give him the answer.
It was like a computer that God spoke through.
God used jewels as a practical tool for communication to lead His people.
This was probably the most practical piece of jewelry ever created.
Jewels are universal symbols of beauty and wealth.
God considers His people His jewels, and His goal is to beautify them that they might shine as jewels, and be as durable as jewels.
The prophet Zechariah describes the day of God's coming to rescue His people in Zech.
9:16-17, "The Lord their God will save them on that day as the flock of His people.
They will sparkle in His land like jewels in a crown.
How attractive and beautiful they will be!"
I don't know how beautiful the crowns of kings were in Bible times, but the crowns of royalty in modern times are awesome in their beauty.
Imagine the glory of God's people, when they are finally saved from all that hinders them from being fully the reflections of God's image.
They will be the crown jewels of the King of Kings.
When God wants to describe how precious His people are to Him, He uses jewel imagery.
We read in Is. 62:3-4, "You will be a crown of spendor in the Lord's hand, a royal diadem in the hand of your God.....
The Lord will take delight in you."
God delights in His people, as men do in their most precious jewels, because they are beautiful and valuable.
Jewels are more beautiful when they reflect light.
The more light a gem will disperse, the more color it conveys to the eye, and thus the greater it's beauty.
God's people are to be lights in the world conveying the beauty of God's love for a lost world.
Christians who will shine as God's jewels forever, are to shine in time reflecting the light of His love in a dark world.
Ernestine Ramaboa, in May of 1967, was panning gravel in South Africa.
For five years she and her husband had been working there 30 foot square diamond claim.
They averaged 25 to 30 cents a day finding rice size diamonds.
But this day was different--as different as rice is from eggs, for on this day she unearthed an egg size diamond.
They only had $4.00 between them, so they could not afford the $19.50 air fare to the city of Moseru.
So Petrus, her husband, put the egg in his pocket, and they walked for 4 days over the dirt roads.
It was well worth their effort, for it was the world's 8th largest diamond.
They received $302,400 for it.
It was sent to New York City where it was sold for $649,000.
That was quite a nest egg for an egg size jewel, but that is how precious a stone the diamond is.
Many feel the jasper in the walls of the New Jerusalem is the diamond.
If so, the city is primarily a city of diamonds and gold.
What is fascinating is the fact that jewels are glorified commonplace matter.
They represent what God can do with just plain stuff.
They are symbolic of the redemption of sinners--the lowly fallen man made into a gem of infinite worth.
The diamond is merely glorified carbon.
The ruby, topaz, and sapphire are glorified aluminum.
The opal is glorified sand, and so on.
C. J. Baldwin says, "Indeed, the jewels that glitter in the regalia of a Queen, have the same ultimate origin with the stones that lie beneath her feet in the road."
Jewels are the flowers of the mineral world.
They rise out of the soil of the commonplace with a superior beauty, because of the chemistry of God's creativity.
All of this is introduction to our look at the jewels of heaven.
In the light of what we have seen, it ought not to be a surprise that God would lavish the Bride of His beloved Son with more jewelry than all mankind combined has ever processed.
I always thought heaven was depicted with gold and jewels, because these are great values to man, but the more I study, the more I see it is full of gold and jewels, because these are of great value to God.
Man came to value these things, because God valued them first, and made them scarce.
The beauty of heaven is not just for us, it is for the aesthetic pleasure of God and the Lord Jesus, and as we have seen, their taste for jewels was established before man was ever created.
The jewels of heaven are for God's pleasure, as much as for ours.
God loves jewelry and He uses it to glorify all that He exalts and honors.
God made man in His image, and one of the ways this is manifested is in the desire of man to create the same things God loves to create.
In the area of precious stones, man has come a long way.
He can now make many fine and flawless jewels synthetically.