In Revelation 21:10-12 the apostle John says “And he …showed me the holy city, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, having the glory of God….It had a great and high wall and had twelve gates.” Our natural, fallen man is excluded from New Jerusalem by the wall, and our entrance into the city is through the death and resurrection of Christ. By our inclusion in His death and resurrection, our old man was terminated and buried, the created part of our being was redeemed and justified, we were made alive by being born of the Spirit, and we were raised up in Christ to walk in newness of life. All this together is our entrance into New Jerusalem.
Revelation 21:21a says, “And the twelve gates were twelve pearls; each one of the gates was, respectively, of one pearl.” New Jerusalem is full of spiritual signs. The pearl signifies the death and resurrection of Christ, through which we enter New Jerusalem. Note 2 on Revelation 21:21* says, “Each gate of the holy city is one pearl, signifying that the entrance to the city is unique and is once for all; that is, we can enter the city only through the once-for-all regeneration accomplished by Christ’s overcoming death and life-imparting resurrection.”
The pearl gates as the entrance to New Jerusalem are not physical. They portray the death and resurrection of Christ as our entrance into the new creation. This is much more precious than any physical pearl.
* in The NT Recovery Version Online, © 1997-2012 by LSM