How Big Will The New Earth HAVE To Be?
International Space Station
The Size of the New Jerusalem Will Determine the Size of the New Earth
How big is big?
I am using the existing God created universe as my guideline.
- God loves orbs, the universe is filled with trillions and trillions of them and I am to assume that the New Earth will not be flat but round, round, round.
- The laws of physics, gravity,energy and the rules that govern our current environment will be changed in many ways to reflect our Lord's eternal purposes for His people; such as mass/gravity ratios, atmospheric pressures and so on. The existing physical laws of this planet could not support what is coming!
Amazing facts about the New Jerusalem; the wedding chamber of the Bride.
- Using the ancient stadia (515/ft per furlong) of which John would have been very well acquainted; the dimensions of the New Jerusalem will be approximately 1,170 miles in width, length and height.
- Manned space stations fly between 200 to 400 mile orbits; not even half of the height of the city.
- The height of our atmosphere which contains 80% of earth's air is about 11 miles at the equator and somewhat less at the poles. The new atmosphere would have to be more than a 100 times in height than we live with now.
Are you getting the picture that what we currently live within will never suffice for the presence of new Jerusalem? Remember that there will be people living and dying on the new earth who still carry with them the limitations of the human frame.
More amazing facts:
- The distance between Los Angeles and Seattle is 1,137 miles. I have done the drive many times and it is a long trip.
- The area of the base of the New Jerusalem will be approx. 1,368,900 sq. miles.
- The area of the continental USA is approx. 3.3 million sq. miles; the New Jerusalem would cover 40% of the country.
- The cubic volume in miles is a staggering 1.6 billion: massive elbow room.
What do we know from the Word?
- It will descend from heaven as a single solid (Greek - megas3173) creation.
- It will have a solid but clear (jasper - predominately red) wall around the complete city. It will be 4,680 miles long, 264 feet tall (144 cubits of an angel, man's equals 18 inches but add 4 inches for an angel), how thick?, who knows.
- It will have 12 gates, each made of a single pearl; how could we even fathom such an idea?
- The city will be of pure gold; clear like glass. Check out the image on my blog "The Day the Devil Moves to His Eternal Residence"; it is the best concept of the appearance of the New Jerusalem I have seen yet.
- The wall will have 12 foundation stones each garnished ( Greek - kosmeo2885 - to adorn, we get cosmetics from this word) with 12 different gems from clear to golden to multiple hues of blue, green and red. With the light coming from God Himself; it is no wonder why we humans love fireworks so much for He will provide a fireworks show beyond belief forever.
- A crystal clear river of the water of life will proceed from the throne of God, and the tree of life which bears 12 manner of fruits will adorn its shores and the street of His city. Check out Ezekiel 47:12; this was a promise made to Israel that this river would flow through their land with the trees of life present.
What we know from Revelation 22:5 is that we shall reign from this New Jerusalem forever and ever. John was overwhelmed by the light of it all and what we can garner from his description, it will not come close to our imaginations but shall cause us worship our Creator even more deeply. Remember, John tried to worship an angel he was so overcome.
Line of Sight
How Big Does the New Earth Need to Be to Accommodate the New Jerusalem
First we need understand the line of sight principle that determines how much the curvature of the earth effects not only communication but the size of structures. As you see from the diagram above, the curvature affects the height of communication towers and their distances between one another. For example:
- A 100 foot tower has a calculated line of sight (l.o.s.) distance of 14 miles; a 1,000 foot tower has a l.o.s. of 35 miles and a 10,000 foot tower has l.o.s. distance of only 145 miles. Without the curvature effect you would think that the 1,000 foot tower would reach 10 times that of the 100 foot tower and the 10,000 foot tower distance would be a 100 times farther. The problem is that not only is the tower further away but due to the earth's curvature, the second tower remains perpendicular to the earth's surface but is not parallel to the first tower, thus creating a l.o.s. problem.
- Taking the New Jerusalem into account with it's solid foundation (meaning, it is not curved); if it were to sit upon the surface of the current planet, the 12 gates which are 585 miles from the point of contact would be 42 miles above the earth's surface. The river flowing out of the city would have a 42 mile drop to the planet's surface. None of this is very realistic. The New Jerusalem will sit securely on solid ground and the river will flow into the land of Israel.
Some have even suggested that it will hover just above the planet. This would create a perpetual area of darkness of almost 1.4 million square miles. It would also increase the distance of the drop of the already ridiculous 42 miles. Beam us up Scotty!
The World's Largest Building Footprint
The Second Largest Building Footprint
So Again, How Big is Big?
The pictures above are of the two largest building footprints in the world: first the Aalsmeer Flower Auction building which has a footprint of 2 tenths of a square mile and the Boeing plant in Everett, Washington which is about .14 of a square mile. The American Society of Civil Engineers knows of the restriction to the size of the base due geographic features and structural strength issues; none of which concerns our God. Given the fact that the New Earth will be round some interesting issues arise, for example:
- One degree of this earth based on a circumference of approx.25,000 miles is equal to about 70 miles; 150 times the width of the Aalsmeer building.
- Let's make some estimations: if the New Jerusalem would sit on a full degree of the New Earth's surface; the circumference would equal 421,364 miles with a diameter of 134,120 miles or over 50% larger than Jupiter's 86,881 mile diameter.
- If it is used a half of a degree, it would have a circumference of 842,728 miles with a diameter over 3 times that of Jupiter.
- At a tenth of a degree (on the current earth, that would be building 7 miles wide) the numbers become staggering. It would require the New Earth to be 4,213,640 miles around with a diameter of 1,341,200 miles; 1.5 times larger than our sun. The total surface of our planet earth is 196.9 million square miles and this placed against a New Earth of this enormous size would be comparable to the size of West Virginia in relation to our little earth we now inhabit, including the seas; it would be a speck.
A Personal Commentary
Why on such a perfect New Earth, with our Lord Jesus among mankind, will there still be a sin problem? Even during the millennial period, His ways are still beyond our understanding as we look through a glass darkly into a mysterious future. It is not for us to know until we meet Him, as it states in 1 John 3:2 "..we shall be like Him;for we shall see Him as He is." We know that flesh and blood will inherit the New Earth and they shall have off-spring aplenty. Look around you, do you see Christians struggle with wayward children? Look at Adam and Eve, they didn't last very long in a perfect environment and that will also be the case as the years roll by during the thousand years. In Zechariah 14:17-19, a punishment will issued to any nation of the New Earth that does not come up to the earthly Jerusalem for the only requirement of the millennial period; the annual feast of Tabernacles, which is seven days of feasting and partying. Wow, what a tough requirement. Obviously, not coming up proves a heart issue is at the root of who is the lord of their life. It is not what man has that sets him free but who he knows. Do not be quick to judge, for if God had not convicted your heart of sin; you know from where you have come and you know what would be your end. Live a life victorious in the face of our enemies; many will be convicted of sin and you will have lived out the Gospel to the glory of God.