A beautiful symbol
“And the twelve gates were twelve pearls; each one of the gates was a single pearl…” - REVELATION 21:21
How many jokes have you heard about Saint Peter and the Pearly Gates? Today’s verse explains that the gates of Heaven are each made from a single pearl, and I like the symbolism of that. A pearl comes into being when a little bit of sand gets into an oyster, and that grain of sand is an irritant. The oyster begins to secrete a protective fluid, and that fluid gathers around the grain of sand until it becomes smooth and a pearl begins to be form. In effect, a pearl comes into being through suffering.
It is beautiful to realize that the gates of Heaven are made of pearls. It reminds us that we are only able to enter through those gates because of Christ’s suffering on the Cross, and because we have been washed in the shed blood of the Lamb of God, Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.