“Blessed are those who do His commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter through the gates into the city.
But outside are dogs and sorcerers and sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters, and whoever loves and practices a lie.” Rev. 22”14-15 NKJV
In our world today dogs are most people’s precious pets, fed on choice delicacies, shampooed and bathed in fancy dog tubs, housed in designer kennels, and taken around for joy rides sometimes in flamboyant doggy clothes. Canine lovers may be puzzled by the derision dogs receive in the pages of the New and Old Testament.
More often however, both the New and the Old Testament associate dogs with ruin, unclean or evil.
From the Old Testament:
“Therefore you shall not eat any flesh that is torn to pieces in the field; you shall throw it to the dogs” (Ex.22:31).
“The dogs will eat the flesh of Jezebel on the plot of Jesreel” (2 Kings 9:38).
“For dogs have surrounded me. A company of evildoers have enclosed me” (Ps.22:16).
“The sword to kill and the dogs to drag away” (Jer.15:3).
From the New Testament:
“Don’t give that which is holy to the dogs” (Mt.7:6).
“It is not appropriate to take the children’s bread and throw it to the dogs” (Mk.7:27).
“Beware of the dogs, beware of the evil workers, beware of the false circumcision” (Phil.3:2).
“Outside are the dogs, the sorcerers, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters, and everyone that practices falsehood” (Rev.22:15).
While taboos concerning other animals had health related justifications or ritualistic considerations concerning ideas of purity, dogs seem to have been singled out.
Dogs were considered unclean animals under the law of Moses, and the term was applied to unclean persons who were low in character, vile or shameless as well as, including people such as Sodomites (Deut. 23:17-18; I Tim. 1:10) and false teachers of low moral standards (Phil. 3:2).
This passage also suggest that the dogs are not only the shameless and the unbelieving, but also Christians who after giving their hearts to Jesus, "return to their vomit."
The dog may, then, be a symbol of all that is disgusting.
Separated forever from all the blessing of God will be the unclean, or "dogs."
The sins of the last days will tend to fix the character of each person according to the habits which he/she has already formed.
There will come a time when change will be impossible--when no further opportunity will be given for repentance on the one hand or for apostasy on the other.
Continued sin defines character and determines destiny.
John names some of the people who will remain outside. He writes in verse 15; "Outside are the dogs and the sorcerer’s and the immoral persons and the murderers and the idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices lying."
Five of the six characteristics are also found in the slightly longer list in Rev. 21:8 of those whose lot is the lake which burns with fire and brimstone. Such people do not have a right to the tree of life, nor do they enter the New Jerusalem.
Unbelievers do not live according to God's commands. They will remain outside the city-the New Jerusalem. Taken literally, we might picture them as living just outside the gates. But, in reality, they will have their destiny in the lake of fire (21:8). They will suffer eternal punishment and will be separated forever from the blessings of God.
This is probably one of the more difficult messages for the mind of modern man to accept. Especially those who do not believe in life after death and those who do not believe in heaven and hell, they often strongly oppose the idea of eternal punishment. For them there are no dividing lines between the destinies of men.
Psalm 101:7 reminds us that;"No man who practices deceit shall dwell in my house; no man who utters lies shall continue in my presence.”
Jesus is coming soon.
Every person needs to heed that warning cry, and respond while the Spirit and the Bride still say, "Come!"
Just a thought: Do you think it is possible that the metaphor for “dogs”, since they are considered evil, unclean…….our precious “pets” could be our precious “idols”? Some people tend to covet, worship, love, hunger, dwell upon and idolize their secret sins. These “sins” are “pets” they cherish them more than a relationship with God. They are unwilling to give them up because they are precious pets that fulfill their fleshly desires.