I arrive at the pearly gates

from Jay Z – Heaven Lyrics on Rap Genius

Meaning

THE PEARLY GATES

Less lightheartedly, Jay is alluding to his own possible early death. Either way, his life has been great.

Sometimes, you have to wonder whether he flirts with the idea of an early death to secure his GOATness since they got him fighting ghosts

Arriving at the pearly gates is used as another way of shifting the religious metaphors from the Five-Percent Nation to Christianity (as he does at the end of this verse). While in the first verse Hova refers to the 12 Jewels of Islam, he now refers to the pearly gates which are mentioned only once in the Bible in Revelation 21:21:

And the twelve gates were twelve pearls; every several was of one pearl

Moreover, pearly gates are the entrance to the Kingdom of God, and in the other verses of Revelation 21, the entire Kingdom is described as composed in twelves. Jay-Z means to contrast this Christian 12 with the earlier NGE 12.

Coincidence?? … this is also his 12th Solo album. Play on 12? Not Kelly’s 12-Play (Remix)!

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