Continued from Part 1: Brother Roberts vision of the Kingdom:
This is only the profane portion of the land – a scene of peace and righteousness and plenty, truly, but not comparable to “the holy portion of the land.” Come to the holy portion of the land – the land given as an oblation to the Lord.
We approach Jerusalem, or rather Yah Shammah (the new name of the new city) from the south.
It stands in the southernmost section of the holy portion.
It is an immense city, built upon a plan of perfect symmetry and proportion.
It is very unlike the huddled clusters of human dwellings called towns with which we have been familiar.
The general plan is an exact square, marked by an outer wall.
The square is of enormous extent, measuring nine miles through at any point.
The wall is of bright stone, and adorned with towers at regular distances.
We only see the south wall.
It stretches away right and left further than the eye can follow.
It is over nine miles long on the south side, and on all the other sides the same.
There are lofty ornamental gates at regular distances.
We descend from the overlooking hill and enter by one of these gates.
It would be pleasant to stay and inspect the city; but we want to hurry on to the temple, and, therefore we must be content with a rapid passage through the central thoroughfare, which we have chosen, to the northern exit by one of the gates in the north wall.
Just before passing on, we notice at a glance the stately character of the city.
The streets are straight and wide, and shaded with trees, and, at regular distances, open out into squares and crescents.
The houses are not high, and stand apart in gardens except where here and there palatial blocks of buildings spring from the midst of the squares.
We ask what these are and are informed that they are reception-houses, for the accommodation of the visitors who daily come from all parts.
There is an immense number of the people in the city, but the city is so vast that they do not appear numerous, except at certain points, as we pass along.
Their aspect is such as never saw in any city crowd before – so quiet, yet so cheerful; so brightly interested in everything, yet so orderly and respectful; so apparently cultured and well-to-do, yet having none of the fussiness and arrogance usually associated with prosperity.
All are well-clad, clean, intelligent, good, righteous, and happy,- no boisterous merrymaking- no foolish banter – no unsuitable speaking.
They are a few of the happy subjects of the kingdom of God.
They have come from all parts of the earth to do homage to the king – wives and families with them, leaving behind them prosperous homesteads and occupations, to which they will return in a little season.
We hasten in a straight line along our nine-mile avenue of picturesque and happy human habitation – (we could take the help of an electric car, if we liked; for such has been provided in all the thoroughfares, for the use of the people; but, in our new state, we prefer to walk); we can quicken our pace, when we want to do so, as we dreamt of in our mortal days.
We get out at the gate of Judah; opposite which, after crossing an ornamental common of about half a mile in breadth that runs round the entire city, there opens a magnificent highway running in a straight line in a northern direction towards the temple which is distant about thirty miles.
Along this highway we proceed.
It is very broad, and of noble aspect.
A line of tall trees in a broad band of turf divides it in the center, and again in the middle of each side, giving four spacious roadways running side by side, lined with trees and bordered with turf and flowers.
The country on each side is laid out in field and estates, which are in the occupation of the Levites and of second order who serve the temple, whose lands, however, are accessible to visitors at all times.
The country becomes more magnificent at every step.
At certain points, side roads strike off and return in many turnings and windings to the main road again.
These side roads lead through woodsy solitudes of paradisaic beauty.
Let us go down one of these roads and behold the fulfillment of the promise that the Lord would make the place of his feet glorious.
All is quiet, comforting, and beautiful.
There is no dankness, but only a sense of bracing relief in the shade they give: no wetness on the ground, but only a pleasant soft hardness.
There are no walls or fences at the side of the road.
You may walk straight off the road on to velvet turf under the trees and among the shrubs.
Here you find all kinds of fruit growing – all kinds of flowers in bloom.
You are at liberty to put forth your hand and do as you will.
How delicious the odor everywhere! We stroll and stroll.
Bro. Robert Roberts describes his vision of the Kingdom in ‘The Final Consolation’.
Stay posted to read the remainder of the series.