And the gates of the city shall be after names of the tribes
According to number of them, twelve, and called by their names; the names of the several tribes being written on them; see ( Revelation 21:12 ) , this shows that all true Israelites indeed, Israel not after the flesh, but after the Spirit, have a right of entrance into, and communion with, the church of God; even the whole Israel of God, whom he has chosen for himself; Christ has redeemed by his blood, and the Spirit calls by his grace, and sanctifies; these are all, be they Jews or Gentiles, fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God: these gates, though twelve, with respect to the twelve tribes that enter in at them, and the twelve apostles of the Lamb that direct unto them, and whose doctrine they embrace and profess that go in by them; yet are but one in the main, which is Christ, faith in him, and a profession of it, and a professed subjection to his Gospel and ordinances, ( John 10:1 John 10:9 ) : three gates northward;
for those that lay on that side to enter in at: one gate of Reuben, one gate of Judah, and one gate of Levi:
these tribes, and so the rest, were not placed according to their encampment about the tabernacle in the wilderness, or as they were placed by Joshua in the land of Canaan; which shows that the tribes literally considered are not intended. Levi had a gate, though it had not a portion in the manner the other tribes had.