Useful Bible Studies > Revelation Commentary > chapter 22

The water of life and the tree of life

Revelation 22:2

In Revelation 21:6, God promised to give the water of life to anyone who desired it. They only need to come to him, and he will provide (22:17). It is his free gift (Isaiah 55:1) and it satisfies completely (John 4:14). John 7:37-39 shows that this is a reference to the Holy Spirit.

The Ďwater of lifeí means the water that brings life. That is clear from Ezekiel 47:1-12. Ezekiel saw a river that came from the temple (Godís house). That river went through the desert into the Dead Sea (a sea in Israel where nothing can live because of the salt). Wherever the river went, it brought life. There were trees by the river where formerly there was only desert. There were fish in the Dead Sea and they were plentiful.

In Revelation 22:1, the water of life comes from the throne (royal seat) of God and of Christ. So, its source is God, and God has provided a plentiful supply. It flows through the main street of the New Jerusalem.

The tree of life grows by that river. The Bible first mentions the tree of life in Genesis 2:9. It was a very wonderful tree that grew in the garden called Eden. The person who ate its fruit would live always (Genesis 3:22). For that reason, when the first people chose not to obey God, he sent them away from Eden. He sent angels (special servants of God) to guard the tree of life (Genesis 3:24). The result of sin (evil deeds) is death (Romans 6:23).

In the New Jerusalem, however, the tree of life is among Godís people. It is in the street that goes through the middle of their city. Its fruit is constantly available. There, all Godís people will live always (John 3:16; Revelation 21:4). Its leaves bring health to the nations, which perhaps is a word-picture for peace. The world will always be at peace (Isaiah 2:4) because of what Christ has done (Ephesians 2:13-17).

Next part: There will be no more curse (Revelation 22:3)


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© 2016, Keith Simons.