Death Or No Death?

Q. I have one question. I have read on the site that Revelation 21 takes place during the millennium and that the Church will live in the New Jerusalem (which will orbit the earth) while Israel and the tribulation saints live on the new heaven and earth.  The thought is that Revelation 21:1 is referring to Isaiah 65:17.

The theory makes a lot of sense, but I noticed something. Revelation 21:4 says that “there shall be no more death”, while Isaiah 65:20 indicates that there will still be sin and death during the millennium. In fact, Revelation 21:4 seems to categorically say that death, sorrow, crying, and pain have been done away with forever, “for the former things are passed away”. But if there is still sin and death in Isaiah 65, then death, sorrow, crying, and pain haven’t been done away yet, for where there is sin and death there is sorrow and pain.

What are your thoughts on this? It is hard for me to match Revelation 21 to Isaiah 65; to me they seem to be discussing two different new earths – one that has death, and one that does not.  Thank you very much for your site! I have immensely enjoyed it since I discovered it a few months ago and have learned a great deal. I am very thankful for your ministry.

A. The confusion goes away when you realize that Isaiah 65:20 is describing conditions on Earth for Tribulation survivors, while Rev. 21:4 is talking about the redeemed Church in the New Jerusalem, which will have attained immortality in the Resurrection / Rapture.  I think John quoted Isaiah 65:17 in opening Rev. 21 to show that he had back tracked to the beginning of the Millennium to describe the New Jerusalem.  He didn’t intend for us to think other factors will be the same for the two groups.

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