Revelation 21:1 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Revelation 21:1, NIV: Then I saw 'a new heaven and a new earth,' for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea.

Revelation 21:1, ESV: Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more.

Revelation 21:1, KJV: And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.

Revelation 21:1, NASB: Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth passed away, and there is no longer any sea.

Revelation 21:1, NLT: Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the old heaven and the old earth had disappeared. And the sea was also gone.

Revelation 21:1, CSB: Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more.

What does Revelation 21:1 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

John saw a vision of a new heaven and a new earth replacing the millennial heaven and earth. "The heavens" as referred to here, does not include the heaven where God dwells. The word translated as "heaven" most likely refers to earth's atmosphere and/or space.

John writes that the first heaven and the first earth pass away, a statement that some Bible scholars interpret as complete annihilation. Others interpret it to mean a renovation. Those who believe earth and heaven will cease to exist point to Peter's statement that "the heavens and earth that now exist are stored up for fire" (2 Peter 3:7). Those who believe the heavens and the earth will undergo a renovation recall that God destroyed the earth with a flood in the time of Noah, but a new kind of earth emerged when the flood subsided.

The word "new" in Revelation 21:1 is kainon, meaning "new in quality or fresh." Another word for "new" is neos, meaning "new in time." According to this verse, there will not be a sea on the new earth. The absence of a sea assures us this verse does not refer to the millennial earth, because during the millennium large bodies of water will exist (Isaiah 11:9; Ezekiel 47:8–10, 15, 17–20; 48:28; Zechariah 9:10; 14:8). It must describe the eternal earth.