The New Jerusalem's Blessings, Revelation Chapter 22 Verses 1-5 (NASB)

    And he showed me a RIVER of THE WATER of LIFE,
The tour guide angel, 'he' (Revelation 21:9 and Revelation 21:15) shows John a RIVER. This isn't just any river. It is THE WATER of LIFE that flows in it. Even though we now are in the new Jerusalem, during Jesus' earthly ministry, He talked about this LIVING WATER (John 4:7-26). It is clear that He was referring to eternal life. And that is what the residents of the new Jerusalem will have to be able to REIGN forever and ever (verse 5).

The last part of this verse makes a clear reference to God, the Father, and the Lamb, Jesus Christ the Son.  We haven't seen much of the Holy Spirit since Their blazing descriptions in the beginning (Revelation 1:4 and Revelation 4:5). But the Holy Trinity remains in tact forever and ever too. Here we most likely see the Holy Spirit in the form of this RIVER of THE WATER of LIFE. This may seem strange at first, but John in another letter he wrote, says that there are three entities who bear witness: the Spirit, the Water, and the Blood (1 John 5:6-8-12). Previously we have indicated that water is the container of spirits. Good WATER like this WATER of LIFE contains good Spirit(s). Bad water contains evil spirit(s) (e.g. Revelation 9:13-14-21, Revelation 12:10-15-17, and Revelation 16:4-7,12-16).

Jesus makes a point about 'living WATER' flowing from the innermost being of the Holy Spirit in John 7:37-38-39-52. From Old Testament Levitical writings (Leviticus 17:10-16), we understand the relationship between blood and LIFE physically. In this verse, we find the blood not red, but rather
    clear as crystal,
We are talking about a purity unknown here on this earth. This is true for both the physical arena with all our chemical pollutants, and the spiritual arena with all our sins. Even as Christ washes our bodies with pure water(Hebrews 10:19-22-25), we, in turn, must purify ourselves now if we expect to see Him as He is (in the new Jerusalem, too - 1 John 3:1-3-10).
    coming from THE THRONE of GOD and of THE LAMB,
Here we see the source of this RIVER. We are not told to where this RIVER flows. We do know that there is no sea (Revelation 21:1). Thus one concludes this good water is all used up by the residents of the new Jerusalem and by the nations (Revelation 21:22-24-26-27) outside the gates. We don't even know whether there is gravity in the new earth. Perhaps this RIVER just emanates from the THRONE much like the lightning and sounds do in Revelation 4. Interestingly, this could be a reclamation of the original garden of Eden before sin messed up the earth (Genesis 2:4-6-14).
    in the middle of its STREET.
This is the same street in the CITY as in Revelation 21:21.

There is a discussion among scholars whether STREET is singular or plural. Keith Harris in "The Unveiling" points out that the Greek for STREET has been translated in plural form in other portions of scripture (Matthew 6:5, 12:19; Luke 10:10, 13:26, and 14:21; and Acts 5:15).
    And on either side of THE RIVER was THE TREE of LIFE, bearing twelve kinds of FRUIT, yielding its FRUIT every MONTH;
Again, as Keith Harris points out, RIVER could be translated from the same Greek word in plural form (Matthew 7:25,27; John 7:38; Revelation 8:10, 16:4; and 2 Corinthians 11:26). The implications are that the source of the RIVER is the THRONE and may spread out from there flowing throughout the CITY (previous verse).

Likewise, TREE may be translated from the Greek as plural such as "clubs" in Matthew 26:47 and 26:55; Mark 14:43 and 14:48; and Luke 22:52; as "stocks" in Acts 16:24. Even as we refer to a tree type, say oak for example, we know there are many different kinds of oak trees growing. Compare this verse with Ezekiel's vision in Ezekiel 47:1-12-12.

This TREE of LIFE is the new earth's equivalent of the old earth's TREE of LIFE (Genesis 2:4-9-14 and Genesis 3:22-24). Its fruit probably is not for nourishment (i.e. if new earth residents didn't eat they would die. That can't be because it violates Revelation 21:4 and 22:5). Rather it is more like spiritual vitamins. If we use Galatians 5:22-23 for example, one gets a spiritual dose of "love" for a month. Recall that we have made a link between the Holy Spirit and the RIVER (previous verse), and this could be considered an extension of the work of the Holy Spirit much like water flows up through the trunk into the FRUIT and LEAVES.

The use of MONTH has caused some difficulty to explain because MONTHS on the old earth are timed by the moon. Since the new earth won't have any night or a need for the sun, one wonders whether there is an equivalent MOON in the new heaven and new earth system? We cannot say for sure, but given how precise an eternal God is during the tribulation period (e.g. Revelation 9:5 or Revelation 11:9) on the old earth, one must assume that there is a way to denote time on the new earth. Those intervals must be based upon Jesus' time (verse 13); we just don't know how long He will make a MONTH of time between the Beginning and the End.
    and the LEAVES of THE TREE were for the HEALING of the nations.
The term HEALING most likely is more like well being of the nations. Recall in the original Garden of Eden when one ate of THE TREE(s) of LIFE, there was eternal life (Genesis 2:4-9-14 and Genesis 3:22-24). So, too, here, the LEAVES are what sustains NATIONS forever in the new earth. Furthermore, with the Son, Jesus Christ, the focus of the Revelation, we are here given the mechanism by which eternal life (John 3:16) is imparted to the residents.

By the way, it should not be surprising that the FRUIT and LEAVES are edible. That is what is promised to the Ephesus' overcomers (Revelation 2:7).
    And there shall no longer be ANY CURSE;
Ever since the Garden of Eden, the current earth has been under a CURSE (Genesis 3:8-17-24). Even during the 1,000 year reign of Christ (Revelation 20:4-6) the curse was still present albeit suppressed. It, the CURSE, was reactivated during the final deception of Satan (Revelation 20:7-10). Here in the new heaven, new earth, and new Jerusalem, the CURSE(s) are removed forever.
    and THE THRONE of GOD and of the LAMB shall be in it,
As if to confirm the removal of the CURSE, THE THRONE is shown to be here (see verse 1 also). The CURSE and the THRONE both cannot occupy the same righteous/spiritual space. So with the presence of the THRONE, the CURSE must be gone. Given this eternal principle, imagine the conflict that goes on within a current earth believer. We, believers, are the temple of GOD (1 Corinthians 3:16-17-23) and yet had walked in the CURSED state until we believed (Ephesians 2:1-10). Which one of us doesn't submit to the conflict within (or slip into the "good feeling" of the CURSED state)?  In the new earth, because of the presence of the THRONE, we NEVER will find ourselves with this conflict!
    and His bondservants shall SERVE Him;
John, as a bondservant (Revelation 1:1) comes full circle. John tells us that he plans on SERVING Him forever and ever (verse 5).

Interestingly, this may be what Zechariah was talking about in Zechariah 14:1-11-21.  Being His bondservant in this verse is like the "no longer a Canaanite in the house of the Lord" expression in Zechariah. The spiritual process of becoming a bondservant is like that given by Paul in his letter to the Galatians (Galatians 3). We have put on Christ like a coat over the CURSED man inside. But having put on the coat which is Christ, we become "one in Christ Jesus". This oneness allows us to SERVE Him, God, in a priestly manner (Revelation 1:6) with the LAMB as High Priest (Hebrews 9:11-14-14).

Some Christians have a difficult time with the concept of heaven. They view it as a "boring" place meaning "what can we possibly do forever and ever?". In this verse, it is shown that there are infinite ways we will SERVE an infinite God. Our minds have no way of conceiving the ways we will SERVE Him (by bringing the GLORY and HONOR to the THRONE for starters - Revelation 21:26).
    and they shall SEE HIS FACE,
There is something about having been called by God to perform a specific task, e.g. Moses and the burning bush (Exodus 3), which instills a deep desire to see God's face (Exodus 33:12-23). God is Love (1 John 4:7-16-21), and we all desire to be loved. More than that, all believers should crave the love of God. The purest expression of a parent's love is most often shown in their face. Likewise, we want to SEE HIS FACE to fully absorb that love He has for us (Romans 8:18-39).

On this present earth because of the CURSE (previous verse), we cannot see God's face and live. However, when we get to the new Jerusalem, we already are living the new eternal life, death has been abolished (Revelation 20:14), and we finally shall SEE HIS FACE.

When face to face, one can communicate openly. Apparently Adam and Eve had long walks together with God in the Garden of Eden just talking to each other (Genesis 2:15-25, 3:8-13). But after Adam and Eve sinned, they only "heard" the sound of the Lord God. Their direct face to face encounters with God abruptly ceased. Their sin got in the way of an open relationship with their Creator and God (1 John 3:1-2-10). Likewise, if you don't have an open relationship with God, consider what unconfessed sin(s) are standing in the way.

To SEE HIS FACE, one must be "pure in heart" (Matthew 5:1-8-12). Even the knowledge of evil (or good for that matter) is erased (Genesis 3:22-22-24). The new earth, new heaven, and new Jerusalem are not based on "good" but rather on GLORY and HONOR (Revelation 21:26).
    and HIS NAME shall be on their foreheads.
The indication that we are truly forever residents (next verse) of the new Jerusalem is by HIS NAME visibly and unerasably written on our forehead (Revelation 7:3 and Revelation 14:1). In the Greek, the preposition may be better translated as "in their foreheads".  This makes one wonder what part of our genetic makeup contains the pieces that will become how we believe. Each of us is unique genetically, and yet, some combination of genes, those related to the brain/forehead perhaps, becomes or carries HIS NAME, it would seem. When I will be standing there looking at HIS FACE, and He will be looking back at me, he will see HIS NAME. This isn't a superficial look; it is those eyes like a flame of fire (Revelation 1:14) taking a penetrating look down into the substance that is ME (Hebrews 4:11-13). And He will SEE HIS NAME that I am His child.
    And there shall no longer be ANY NIGHT; and they shall not have need of the light of the lamp nor the light of the sun, because THE LORD GOD SHALL ILLUMINE THEM;
This is a reiteration of Revelation 21:23 and Revelation 21:25. The viewpoint in those verses is from the outside of THE CITY. Here we are shown THE CITY's lighting up close and personal.

As with the rest of the Revelation, this, too, has both physical and spiritual meanings. Physically, this verse doesn't say that the present solar system is taken away. The present solar system just isn't needed anymore or may be so dim in comparison to the illumination of the presence of the Lord God. Perhaps we are seeing the full meaning of Jesus' words in John 8:12-20. It also is clear from Jesus' words, that there is a translation to the 'light of life' that will take place. In this verse, here in Revelation, we are shown the 'light of (eternal) life'.

Furthermore, from a spiritual viewpoint, light is the absence of darkness. It is an exercise for the reader to determine what it really means to have darkness removed. Hints are given in Matthew 22:1-13-14, Luke 1:67-79, John 3:16-19-21, Acts 26:1-18-23, 2 Corinthians 6:14-18, Ephesians 5:1-8-20, 1 John 1:5-10, and 1 John 2:7-9-11.

With continual light, one could work forever, but in Hebrews 4:9-10, there is an indication that when we reach THE CITY, we will enter into our REST even as God has entered into His REST. Contrast this with those who are in the lake of fire (Revelation 14:11) or as Jesus referred to it, 'outer darkness' (Matthew 8:5-12-13, Matthew 22:1-13-14, and Matthew 25:14-30. 'Outer darkness' is where non-performing servants are assigned (see verse 3). This place is so horrible that there is weeping and gnashing of teeth. That is a sign of no REST but rather constant turmoil. Every evil and ugly thought and deed is contending with the next evil thought and deed. If you think road rage is bad, try lake of fire rage! This makes me wonder how the cowardly will fare (Revelation 21:8)?
Having just discussed the eternal REST we will have, we still will have a forever obligation to REIGN. This is the bookend to Revelation 1:6. The interesting dilemma, here, however, is that REIGNING implies a 'lower class' or the ones being REIGNED over. Yet the 'lower class' is contained in the 'THEY". In this present world, we cannot understand this duality even as we have a hard time understanding the 'first will be last; and the last, first' principal (Matthew 19:16-30-30).
"Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, © Copyright The Lockman Foundation, 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 Used by permission."

References to the Revelation of Jesus Christ are in bold italics. All other references are in bold only