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REVELATION OF ST. JOHN THE DIVINE - Chapter 22 - Verse 1

Verse 1. And he showed me a pure river of water of life. In the New Jerusalem; the happy abode of the redeemed. The phrase "water of life," means living or running water, like a spring or fountain, as contrasted with a stagnant pool. See Barnes on "Joh 4:14".

The allusion here is doubtless to the first Eden, where a river watered the garden, (Ge 2:10, seq.,) and as this is a description of Eden recovered, or Paradise regained, it was natural to introduce a river of water also, yet in such a way as to accord with the general description of that future abode of the redeemed. It does not spring up, therefore, from the ground, but flows from the throne of God and the Lamb. Perhaps, also, the writer had in his eye the description in Eze 47:1-12, where a stream issues from under the temple, and is parted in different directions.

Clear as crystal. See Barnes on "Re 4:6".

 

Proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. Flowing from the foot of the throne. Compare Re 4:6. This idea is strictly in accordance with Oriental imagery. In the East, fountains and running streams constituted an essential part of the image of enjoyment and prosperity, (see Barnes on "Isa 35:6,) and such fountains were common in the courts of Oriental houses. Here, the river is an emblem of peace, happiness, plenty; and the essential thought in its flowing from the throne is, that all the happiness of heaven proceeds from God.

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