The Meaning of Revelation 21:24 Explained

Revelation 21:24

KJV: And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it.

YLT: and the nations of the saved in its light shall walk, and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it,

Darby: And the nations shall walk by its light; and the kings of the earth bring their glory to it.

ASV: And the nations shall walk amidst the light thereof: and the kings of the earth bring their glory into it.

What does Revelation 21:24 Mean?

Study Notes

saved
Scofield " Romans 1:16 ".

Verse Meaning

The city will be so bright that it provides light for the whole new creation. The identity of the nations and kings mentioned is difficult to determine. The most probable explanation seems to be that the nations are groups of believers viewed according to their old creation nationalities, which they will retain in the new creation. The kings (rulers) probably are believing kings who ruled over nations during the old creation. [1] These kings will bring their glory into the city, thus increasing its glory, by simply entering it, since they are glorious individuals by God"s grace.

Context Summary

Revelation 21:9-27 - "the Holy City"
The "new Jerusalem" is the redeemed Church united with her Lord in the act of governing the whole world. A city is obviously the seat of imperial rule. In that blessed condition the saints will rule the earth as the powers of darkness rule it now. We shall enjoy the fellowship of the good and great of every age. In a literal sense we shall be fellow-citizens with the saints. All ages and dispensations will blend there. Angels at the gates; the names of the twelve tribes and twelve Apostles engraved in imperishable characters to indicate the blending of the dispensations; the differing stones, representing variety of character and function but all blending in the light of the Lamb on the throne.
The happy throngs pour through the gates with never-ending rapture. Those gates, facing every quarter, stand always open; but none desire to go forth, except commissioned on some errand by the King. All the glory and honor of the world are gathered within those walls, because Jesus will be king over every department of human life. There will be room for all beauty, art, and culture in the city of eternal light and love. [source]

Chapter Summary: Revelation 21

1  A new heaven and a new earth
10  The heavenly Jerusalem, with a full description thereof
23  She needs no sun, the glory of God being her light
24  The kings of the earth bring their riches unto her

Greek Commentary for Revelation 21:24

Amidst the light thereof [δια του πωτος αυτης]
Rather “by the light thereof.” From Isaiah 60:3, Isaiah 60:11, Isaiah 60:20. All the moral and spiritual progress of moderns is due to Christ, and the nations of earth will be represented, including “the kings” Present active indicative of περω — pherō Swete is uncertain whether this is a picture of heaven itself or “some gracious purpose of God towards humanity which has not yet been revealed” and he cites Revelation 22:2 in illustration. The picture is beautiful and glorious even if not realized here, but only in heaven. [source]
Of them which are saved []
Omit. [source]
In the light [ἐν τῷ φωτὶ]
Read διὰ τοῦ φωτὸς “amidst the light” or “by the light.” [source]
Do bring [φέρουσιν]
The present tense, denoting habit. [source]
Glory and honor []
Omit and honor. Compare Isaiah 60:3. [source]

Reverse Greek Commentary Search for Revelation 21:24

Matthew 2:1 In Bethlehem of Judea [εν ητλεεμ της Ιουδαιας]
There was a Bethlehem in Galilee seven miles northwest of Nazareth (Josephus, Antiquities XIX. 15). This Bethlehem (house of bread, the name means) of Judah was the scene of Ruth‘s life with Boaz (Rth 1:1.; Matthew 1:5) and the home of David, descendant of Ruth and ancestor of Jesus (Matthew 1:5). David was born here and anointed king by Samuel (1 Samuel 17:12). The town came to be called the city of David (Luke 2:11). Jesus, who was born in this House of Bread called himself the Bread of Life (John 6:35), the true Manna from heaven. Matthew assumes the knowledge of the details of the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem which are given in Luke 2:1-7 or did not consider them germane to his purpose. Joseph and Mary went to Bethlehem from Nazareth because it was the original family home for both of them. The first enrolment by the Emperor Augustus as the papyri show was by families Possibly Joseph had delayed the journey for some reason till now it approached the time for the birth of the child.In the days of Herod the King (εν ημεραις ηρωιδου του ασιλεως — en hēmerais Hērōidou tou Basileōs). This is the only date for the birth of Christ given by Matthew. Luke gives a more precise date in his Gospel (Luke 2:1-3), the time of the first enrolment by Augustus and while Cyrenius was ruler of Syria. More will be said of Luke‘s date when we come to his Gospel. We know from Matthew that Jesus was born while Herod was king, the Herod sometimes called Herod the Great. Josephus makes it plain that Herod died b.c. 4. He was first Governor of Galilee, but had been king of Judaea since b.c. 40 (by Antony and Octavius). I call him “Herod the Great Pervert” in Some Minor Characters in the New Testament. He was great in sin and in cruelty and had won the favour of the Emperor. The story in Josephus is a tragedy. It is not made plain by Matthew how long before the death of Herod Jesus was born. Our traditional date a.d. 1, is certainly wrong as Matthew shows. It seems plain that the birth of Jesus cannot be put later than b.c. 5. The data supplied by Luke probably call for b.c. 6 or 7.Wise men from the east The etymology of Μαγι — Magi is quite uncertain. It may come from the same Indo-European root as (megas) magnus, though some find it of Babylonian origin. Herodotus speaks of a tribe of Magi among the Medians. Among the Persians there was a priestly caste of Magi like the Chaldeans in Babylon (Daniel 1:4). Daniel was head of such an order (Daniel 2:48). It is the same word as our “magician” and it sometimes carried that idea as in the case of Simon Magus (Acts 8:9, Acts 8:11) and of Elymas Barjesus (Acts 13:6, Acts 13:8). But here in Matthew the idea seems to be rather that of astrologers. Babylon was the home of astrology, but we only know that the men were from the east whether Arabia, Babylon, Persia, or elsewhere. The notion that they were kings arose from an interpretation of Isaiah 60:3; Revelation 21:24. The idea that they were three in number is due to the mention of three kinds of gifts (gold, frankincense, myrrh), but that is no proof at all. Legend has added to the story that the names were Caspar, Balthasar, and Melchior as in Ben Hur and also that they represent Shem, Ham, and Japhet. A casket in the Cologne Cathedral actually is supposed to contain the skulls of these three Magi. The word for east (αποανατολων — apo anatolōn) means “from the risings” of the sun. [source]
Matthew 2:1 Wise men from the east [μαγοι απο ανατολων]
The etymology of Μαγι — Magi is quite uncertain. It may come from the same Indo-European root as (megas) magnus, though some find it of Babylonian origin. Herodotus speaks of a tribe of Magi among the Medians. Among the Persians there was a priestly caste of Magi like the Chaldeans in Babylon (Daniel 1:4). Daniel was head of such an order (Daniel 2:48). It is the same word as our “magician” and it sometimes carried that idea as in the case of Simon Magus (Acts 8:9, Acts 8:11) and of Elymas Barjesus (Acts 13:6, Acts 13:8). But here in Matthew the idea seems to be rather that of astrologers. Babylon was the home of astrology, but we only know that the men were from the east whether Arabia, Babylon, Persia, or elsewhere. The notion that they were kings arose from an interpretation of Isaiah 60:3; Revelation 21:24. The idea that they were three in number is due to the mention of three kinds of gifts (gold, frankincense, myrrh), but that is no proof at all. Legend has added to the story that the names were Caspar, Balthasar, and Melchior as in Ben Hur and also that they represent Shem, Ham, and Japhet. A casket in the Cologne Cathedral actually is supposed to contain the skulls of these three Magi. The word for east (αποανατολων — apo anatolōn) means “from the risings” of the sun. [source]
1 John 4:14 The Savior of the world []
See the same phrase, John 4:42, and compare John 3:17. Σωτήρ Savioroccurs in John only here and John 4:42. Elsewhere it is applied both to God (1 Timothy 1:1; 1 Timothy 2:3; Titus 1:3; Titus 2:10; Titus 3:4; Judges 1:25), and to Christ (Luke 2:11; Acts 5:31; Acts 13:23; 2 Timothy 1:10; Titus 1:4, etc.). The title is found in Paul's Epistles of the Captivity (Ephesians 5:23; Philemon 3:20), and in the Pastorals (see above), but not in Corinthians, Romans, Galatians, or Thessalonians. In classical writings the term is applied to many deities, especially to Zeus (Jupiter); also to Hermes (Mercury), Apollo, Hercules, and even to female deities, as Fortune and Aphrodite (Venus). “Zeus Soter” (Zeus Savior) was used as a formula in drinking at banquets. The third cup was dedicated to him. Compare Plato: “Then, by way of a third libation to the savior Zeus, let us sum up and reassert what has been said” (“Philebus,” 66). The drinking of this cup was a symbol of good fortune, and the third time came to mean the lucky time. “Twice then has the just man overthrown the unjust; and now comes the third trial, which, after Olympic fashion, is sacred to Zeus the savior, … and surely this will prove the greatest and most decisive of falls” (Plato, “Republic,” 583). Hence the proverb, τὸ τρίτον τῳ σωτῆρι , lit., the third to the savior; i.e., the third or lucky time. The name was also given later to princes or public benefactors. The kindred noun σωτηρία salvationdoes not occur in John's Epistles, and appears only once in the Gospel (John 4:22). It is found thrice in Revelation (Revelation 7:10; Revelation 12:10; Revelation 19:1). Σώζειν tosave occurs six times in John's Gospel, and once in Revelation (Revelation 21:24). It does not appear in the Epistles. [source]
Revelation 21:3 People [λαοὶ]
Notice the plural, peoples (so Rev.), because many nations shall partake of the fulfillment of the promise. Compare Revelation 21:24. [source]
Revelation 17:2 The kings of the earth [οι βασιλεις της γης]
Repeated in Revelation 1:5; Revelation 6:15; Revelation 17:18; Revelation 18:3, Revelation 18:9; Revelation 19:19; Revelation 21:24 and “the kings of the inhabited earth” (Revelation 16:14) either for human rulers in general or the vassal kings absorbed by the Roman Empire. [source]
Revelation 21:26 They shall bring [οισουσιν]
Future active indicative of περω — pherō Rome gathered the merchandise of the world (Revelation 18:11.). The City of God will have the best of all the nations (Isaiah 60:5, Isaiah 60:11), an expansion of Revelation 21:24. [source]

What do the individual words in Revelation 21:24 mean?

And will walk the nations by the light of it the kings of the earth bring the glory and honor of the nations of them into it
καὶ περιπατήσουσιν τὰ ἔθνη διὰ τοῦ φωτὸς αὐτῆς οἱ βασιλεῖς τῆς γῆς φέρουσιν τὴν δόξαν ⧼καὶ τιμὴν τῶν ἐθνῶν⧽ αὐτῶν εἰς αὐτήν

περιπατήσουσιν  will  walk 
Parse: Verb, Future Indicative Active, 3rd Person Plural
Root: περιπατέω  
Sense: to walk.
ἔθνη  nations 
Parse: Noun, Nominative Neuter Plural
Root: ἔθνος  
Sense: a multitude (whether of men or of beasts) associated or living together.
φωτὸς  light 
Parse: Noun, Genitive Neuter Singular
Root: φῶς  
Sense: light.
αὐτῆς  of  it 
Parse: Personal / Possessive Pronoun, Genitive Feminine 3rd Person Singular
Root: αὐτός  
Sense: himself, herself, themselves, itself.
βασιλεῖς  kings 
Parse: Noun, Nominative Masculine Plural
Root: βασιλεύς  
Sense: leader of the people, prince, commander, lord of the land, king.
τῆς  of  the 
Parse: Article, Genitive Feminine Singular
Root:  
Sense: this, that, these, etc.
γῆς  earth 
Parse: Noun, Genitive Feminine Singular
Root: γῆ  
Sense: arable land.
φέρουσιν  bring 
Parse: Verb, Present Indicative Active, 3rd Person Plural
Root: φέρω  
Sense: to carry.
δόξαν  glory 
Parse: Noun, Accusative Feminine Singular
Root: δόξα  
Sense: opinion, judgment, view.
τιμὴν  honor 
Parse: Noun, Accusative Feminine Singular
Root: τιμή  
Sense: a valuing by which the price is fixed.
τῶν  of  the 
Parse: Article, Genitive Masculine Plural
Root:  
Sense: this, that, these, etc.
ἐθνῶν⧽  nations 
Parse: Noun, Genitive Neuter Plural
Root: ἔθνος  
Sense: a multitude (whether of men or of beasts) associated or living together.
αὐτῶν  of  them 
Parse: Personal / Possessive Pronoun, Genitive Masculine 3rd Person Plural
Root: αὐτός  
Sense: himself, herself, themselves, itself.
εἰς  into 
Parse: Preposition
Root: εἰς  
Sense: into, unto, to, towards, for, among.