Who is outside the city described in Revelation 22:14-15?

This is a great question from a dad leading his family. Below is the context of the passage:

13 “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last1.” 14 Blessed are those who do His commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter through the gates into the city.  15 Butoutside are dogs and sorcerers and sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters, and whoever loves and practices a lie. 16 “I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things in the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, the Bright and Morning Star.”  (Rev. 22:13-16 NKJ)

Revelation 22:14 initiates the last of seven beatitudes mentioned in Revelation.  The other six are found in Revelation 1:3; 14:13; 16:15; 19:9; 20:6; and 22:7. These are believers or Christ-followers who love Him and keep His Word (John 14:15). Their guilt is removed and they pursue His righteousness. They have a right to the tree of life, which right was removed when Adam sinned in the Garden of Eden (Gen. 3:22-24).  The next verse describes a different category of people.

Revelation 22:15 describes the judgment on “dogs.”  This is a reference to people as mentioned in Philippians 3:2, “Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the mutilation!” (Phil. 3:2 NKJ) This is a description of unbelievers who continue in their sins of immorality, murdering, idolatry and falsehood. There are many passages in which dogs are a reference to the unbeliever (Matt. 7:6; Mark 7:27; 2 Kg. 18:13). There are also many passages that describe this kind of ungodliness to the unbeliever (Rev. 9:21;  21:8;  John 8:44; 2 Thes. 2:12). There are saved people who have done these wicked acts and have even practiced them, but they have been washed by the blood of the Lamb and humble themselves to pursue His righteousness.

So, who is outside the city? Right now, we know that we see through a glass darkly, but then face to face (1 Cor. 13:12). We will understand fully when we get to heaven, yet now some things are hard to understand.  Those who have been washed by the blood of Jesus are in the city of God and those who rejected Jesus will be outside the city.  There are other passages that describe the darkness of hell and terrible Lake of Fire (Matt. 8:12; Rev. 20:15).  Those who rejected Jesus Christ will not be allowed into the city.

The question is, do you know where you will be and are you helping others find their way to the Savior?


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