Exegetical and Hermeneutical Commentary of Revelation 22:6 – Bible Commentary

Exegetical and Hermeneutical Commentary of Revelation 22:6

And he said unto me, These sayings [are] faithful and true: and the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angel to show unto his servants the things which must shortly be done.

The Confirmation of the Promise; the Error of the Seer, Rev 22:6-11

6. And he said unto me ] Who speaks? the angel of Rev 21:9, or “He that sitteth upon the throne,” as in Rev 21:5-8, or Christ as in Rev 22:16? Probably, an angel speaks in the name of Christ: and this leads St John to fancy, as once before, that the angel is himself a divine person.

These sayings ] Better, words the phrase (except that the copula “are” is not expressed) is verbatim the same as in Rev 21:5.

of the holy prophets ] Read, of the spirits of the prophets: for the phrase, cf. 1Co 14:32.

to shew unto his servants &c.] Rev 1:1.

Fuente: The Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges

And he said unto me – The angel-interpreter, who had showed John the vision of the New Jerusalem, Rev 21:9-10. As these visions are now at an end, the angel comes to John directly, and assures him that all these things are true – that there has been no deception of the senses in these visions, but that they were really divine disclosures of what would soon and certainly occur.

These sayings are faithful and true – These communications – all that has been disclosed to you by symbols, or in direct language. See the notes on Rev 21:5.

And the Lord God of the holy prophets – The same God who inspired the ancient prophets.

Sent his angel – See the notes on Rev 1:1.

To show unto his servants – To all his servants – that is, to all his people, by the instrumentality of John. The revelation was made to him, and he was to record it for the good of the whole church.

The things which must shortly be done – The beginning of which must soon occur – though the series of events extended into distant ages, and even into eternity. See the notes on Rev 1:1-3.

Fuente: Albert Barnes’ Notes on the Bible

Verse 6. These sayings are faithful and true] See the preceding chapter, Re 21:5. From this verse to the end of the chapter is reckoned the epilogue of this book.

1. The angel affirms the truth of all that had been spoken, Re 22:6-11.

2. Jesus Christ confirms what has been affirmed, and pledges himself for the fulfilment of all the prophecies contained in it, Re 22:12-17.

3. John cautions his readers against adding or diminishing, and concludes with the apostolical blessing, Re 22:18-21.

The things which must shortly be done.] There are many sayings in this book which, if taken literally, would intimate that the prophecies delivered in the whole of the Apocalypse were to be fulfilled in a short time after their delivery to John; and this is a strong support for the scheme of Wetstein, and those who maintain that the prophecies of this book all referred to those times in which the apostle lived, and to the disturbances which then took place, not only among the Jews, but in the Roman empire. What they all mean, and when and how they are to be fulfilled, God in heaven alone knows.

Fuente: Adam Clarke’s Commentary and Critical Notes on the Bible

All the words of this book, particularly the things of the last vision, are such as proceed from him who is the faithful witness, Rev 1:5; 3:14; from him who was called faithful, Rev 19:11; and which God will show himself true and faithful in bringing to pass: and such things as God hath revealed to his prophets under the Old Testament in part, and now to me his prophet, to show to his people the things that shall come to pass, and shall shortly begin to be accomplished: See Poole on “Rev 1:1“.

Fuente: English Annotations on the Holy Bible by Matthew Poole

6. These sayings are truethricerepeated (Rev 19:9; Rev 21:5).For we are slow to believe that God is as good as He is. The newsseems to us, habituated as we are to the misery of this fallen world,too good to be true [NANGLE].They are no dreams of a visionary, but the realities of God’s sureword.

holyso ANDREAS.But A, B, Vulgate, Syriac, and Coptic read, “(theLord God of the) spirits (of the prophets).” The Lord Godwho with His Spirit inspired their spirits so as to be able toprophesy. There is but one Spirit, but individual prophets, accordingto the measure given them (1Co12:4-11), had their own spirits [BENGEL](1Pe 1:11; 2Pe 1:21).

be doneGreek,“come to pass.”

Fuente: Jamieson, Fausset and Brown’s Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

And he said unto me,…. That is, the angel that talked with him, and showed him the above things:

these sayings are faithful and true; not only what are delivered in particular concerning the new Jerusalem state, in which are many things new, and unheard of before, and which may seem strange, and even incredible, but all that are written in this book, Re 22:7 all which are “faithful”; to be believed by all that read them, and in the fulfilment of which the faithfulness of God is engaged and displayed: and they are true; for they come from the God of truth, that cannot lie, and are to be credited, and will have a certain accomplishment: this is said to secure the divine authority of this book against the gainsayers of it, whom the Holy Ghost foresaw would arise in the world; and which is here, and in the following part of this chapter, supported by the testimonies of Christ, of his angel, and of John his servant.

And the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angel to show unto his servants the things which must shortly be done; the “Lord” God is the Lord Jesus Christ, as appears by comparing this with Re 1:1 and this is a very glaring proof of the deity of Christ, since he is not only called the Lord God, but the Lord God of the holy prophets; of the prophets of the Old Testament, who foretold things to come, and spake of the Messiah, his person, office, sufferings, death, and the glory that should follow; and of the prophets of the New Testament, who had a gift of explaining the prophecies of the Old, as well as some of them predicted future events; and both sorts were holy men, set part by God for this office, and had principles of holiness wrought in them, and were moved by the Holy Ghost; these Christ inspired, and qualified with gifts suitable to their work; and he is, as the Alexandrian copy, the Complutensian edition, the Vulgate Latin version, and the Oriental versions read, “the Lord God of the spirits of the prophets”; see

1Co 14:32 who had power over their spirits, could come at them, and did impress them with a sense and knowledge of divine and future things, which none but God can do: the same sent an angel of his, one of his ministering spirits he has under his command, perhaps the same that here speaks, for so reads the Syriac version, “sent me his angel”: to show to John, and by him to all the saints, and to all the servants and followers of the Lamb, things that were in a very little time to begin to come to pass, till all were fulfilled; and even those at the greatest distance were, and are to be fulfilled within a little time, with respect to God, with whom a thousand years are as one day, and in comparison of eternity, and even of the time which had elapsed from the beginning of the world; and these things were shown in the various visions of the seals, trumpets, vials, and others; see Re 1:1.

Fuente: John Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible

The New Jerusalem.

A. D. 95.

      6 And he said unto me, These sayings are faithful and true: and the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angel to show unto his servants the things which must shortly be done.   7 Behold, I come quickly: blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book.   8 And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which showed me these things.   9 Then saith he unto me, See thou do it not: for I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: worship God.   10 And he saith unto me, Seal not the sayings of the prophecy of this book: for the time is at hand.   11 He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still.   12 And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.   13 I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.   14 Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.   15 For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.   16 I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star.   17 And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.   18 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:   19 And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

      We have here a solemn ratification of the contents of this book, and particularly of this last vision (though some think it may not only refer to the whole book, but to the whole New Testament, yea, to the whole Bible, completing and confirming the can on of scripture); and here, 1. This is confirmed by the name and nature of that God who gave out these discoveries: he is the Lord God, faithful and true, and so are all his sayings. 2. By the messengers he chose, to reveal these things to the world; the holy angels showed them to holy men of God; and God would not employ his saints and angels in deceiving the world. 3. They will soon be confirmed by their accomplishment: they are things that must shortly be done; Christ will make haste, he will come quickly, and put all things out of doubt; and then those will prove the wise and happy men who have believed and kept his words. 4. By the integrity of that angel who had been the apostle’s guide and interpreter in these visions; this integrity was such that he not only refused to accept religious adoration from John, but once and again reproved him for it. He who was so tender of the honour of God, and so displeased with what was a wrong to God, would never come in his name to lead the people of God into mere dreams and delusions; and it is a still further confirmation of the sincerity of this apostle that he confesses his own sin and folly, into which he had now again relapsed, and he leaves this his failing on perpetual record: this shows he was a faithful and an impartial writer. 5. By the order given to leave the book of the prophecy open, to be perused by all, that they might labour to understand it, that they might make their objections against it, and compare the prophecy with the events. God here deals freely and openly with all; he does not speak in secret, but calls every one to witness to the declarations here made, v. 10. 6. By the effect this book, thus kept open, will have upon men; those that are filthy and unjust will take occasion thence to be more so, but it will confirm, strengthen, and further sanctify those that are upright with God; it will be a savour of life to some and of death to others, and so will appear to be from God, v. 12. 7. It will be Christ’s rule of judgment at the great day; he will dispense rewards and punishments to men according as their works agree or disagree with the word of God; and therefore that word itself must needs be faithful and true. 8. It is the word of him who is the author, finisher, and rewarder of the faith and holiness of his people, Rev 22:13; Rev 22:14. He is the first and the last, and the same from first to last, and so is his word too; and he will by this word give to his people, who conform themselves to it, a right to the tree of life, and an entrance into heaven; and this will be a full confirmation of the truth and authority of his word, since it contains the title and evidence of that confirmed state of holiness and happiness that remains for his people in heaven. 9. It is a book that condemns and excludes from heaven all wicked, unrighteous persons, and particularly those that love and make lies (v. 15), and therefore can never be itself a lie. 10. It is confirmed by the testimony of Jesus, which is the Spirit of prophecy. And this Jesus, as God, is the root of David, though, as man, his offspring–a person in whom all uncreated and created excellencies meet, too great and too good to deceive his churches and the world. He is the fountain of all light, the bright and the morning star, and as such has given to his churches this morning light of prophecy, to assure them of the light of that perfect day which is approaching. 11. It is confirmed by an open and general invitation to all to come and partake of the promises and privileges of the gospel, those streams of the water of life; these are tendered to all who feel in their souls a thirst which nothing in this world can quench. 12. It is confirmed by the joint testimony of the Spirit of God, and that gracious Spirit that is in all the true members of the church of God; the Spirit and the bride join in testifying the truth and excellency of the gospel. 13. It is confirmed by a most solemn sanction, condemning and cursing all who should dare to corrupt or change the word of God, either by adding to it or taking from it, Rev 22:18; Rev 22:19. He that adds to the word of God draws down upon himself all the plagues written in this book; and he who takes any thing away from it cuts himself off from all the promises and privileges of it. This sanction is like a flaming sword, to guard the canon of the scripture from profane hands. Such a fence as this God set about the law (Deut. iv. 2), and the whole Old Testament (Mal. iv. 4), and now in the most solemn manner about the whole Bible, assuring us that it is a book of the most sacred nature, divine authority, and of the last importance, and therefore the peculiar care of the great God.

Fuente: Matthew Henry’s Whole Bible Commentary

He said unto me ( ). Apparently the same angel as in 22:1 (Rev 21:9; Rev 21:15).

These words ( ). The same words used in 21:5 by the angel there. Whatever the application there, here the angel seems to endorse as “faithful and true” ( ) not merely the preceding vision (21:9-22:5), but the revelations of the entire book. The language added proves this: “Sent his angel to shew unto his servants the things which must shortly come to pass” ( ), a direct reference to 1:1 concerning the purpose of Christ’s revelation to John in this book. For “the God of the spirits of the prophets” ( ) see Rev 19:10; 1Cor 14:32. Probably the prophets’ own spirits enlightened by the Holy Spirit (Rev 10:7; Rev 11:8; Rev 22:9).

Fuente: Robertson’s Word Pictures in the New Testament

The Lord God [ ] . Rather, as Rev., the Lord, the God. Of the holy prophets [ ] . For aJgiwn holy substitute pneumatwn spirits, and render, as Rev., the God of the spirits of the prophets.

Be done [] . Better, as Rev., come to pass.

Fuente: Vincent’s Word Studies in the New Testament

1) “And said unto me,” (kai eipen moi) “And he said to me,” The “he” who informed and enlightened John of these matters was one of the seven angels of Rev 21:9-10; Rev 21:17; Rev 22:1.

2) “These sayings are faithful and true,” (houtoi hoi logoi pistoi kai alethinoi) “These words are faithful and true;” authentic or trustworthy, as God’s Word is “true from the beginning,” Psa 119:160, Divinely inspired, 2Ti 3:16-17; 1Th 2:13; Heb 1:11; 2Pe 1:21; 2Pe 3:2; 2Pe 3:15; Rev 19:9; Rev 21:5.

3) “And the Lord God of the holy prophets,” (kai ho kurios ho theos ton pneumaton ton propheton) “And the Lord God of the spirits of the prophets; Each Old and New Testament prophet and writer was inspired, 1Co 14:32; 2Pe 1:21.

4) “Sent his angel,” (apesteilen ton angelon autou) “Sent (commissioned) his angel; Note that the Greek term (apostello) always indicates an authoritative commission. God used his informing angel (perhaps Gabriel) to convey inspired information to John, Rev 1:1; Rev 22:16.

5) “To shew unto his servants,” (deiksai tois doulois autou) “To show to his servants,” whom he purchased with his own blood, as individuals and the church, 1Pe 1:18-19; Rev 5:9-10; Act 20:28; Eph 5:25.

6) “The things that must shortly be done,” (ha dei genesthai en tachei) “Things that must occur quickly, (in a short time); that were as good as done in the purpose of God, as certain as if already done, Heb 10:36-37, The Inspiration of the Bible by the Holy Spirit as its author is the capstone of an the Revelation of Jesus Christ.

Fuente: Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary

Strauss Comments
SECTION 71

Text Rev. 22:6-7

6 And he said unto me, These words are faithful and true: and the Lord, the God of the spirits of the prophets, sent his angel to show unto his servants the things which must shortly come to pass. 7 And behold I come quickly. Blessed is he that keepeth the words of the prophecy of this book.

Initial Questions Rev. 22:6-7

1.

What must shortly come to pass Rev. 22:6?

2.

Does it make any difference to God whether or not we obey the words of the prophecy Rev. 22:7?

3.

Does this book refer to the entire New Testament, The Book of Revelation, or both Rev. 22:7?

Rev. 22:6

What is the source of the message which John has received while banned on Patmos? Is the message authentic? Is the man who was in the Spirit on the Lords Day writing down the Word of God or the Words of a Man? The Lord, the God of the spirits of the prophets is the ultimate source of Johns Revelation. God had sent His angel to show (to show openly or make public) to his slaves the things which must (dei all degrees of necessity) occur quickly (tachei shortly when time is the emphasis or quickly when suddenness of the action of the verb is involved). The adverb modifies the verb occur, thus it tells us how it is to occur suddenly).

Rev. 22:7

Listen! I am coming quickly. Jesus is coming again thanks be to God! His coming will be certain, sudden, and silent. Will you be ready? In this verse John uses the last of the Beatitudes of The Revelation. Blessed is (not in text) the one keeping (the one who constantly keeps). The person who only keeps Gods word when he feels like it or on special occasions will be condemned.) the words of the prophecy of this scroll. We must point out that often we hear people quote this verse and apply it to the entire Bible. Note that John is led by Gods spirit to saythe words of the prophecy of this scroll; therefore, Johns warning actually applies only to The Revelation. (Though in principle it applies to all of Gods Word). The only way for us to be ready when He comes as a thief in the night is to be hearers and doers of the Word. We can constantly keep the words of prophecy of this scroll, only by doing the truth.

Discussion Questions

See Rev. 22:20-21.

Fuente: College Press Bible Study Textbook Series

WORDS OF CONFIRMATION AND WARNING.

(6) And he said unto me . . .It is the angel who speaks. (Comp. Revelation 21 and Rev. 22:9 of this chapter.) In Rev. 22:7 we hear the words of Christ Himself. These sayings (or, words) are faithful and true. The reference is to the whole book. The book contains the Revelation of the faithful and true witness (Rev. 3:14), whose words are faithful, trustworthy, and fulfilling the desire of them that fear Him. Nor is there reason to doubt this; for the Lord, the God of the spirits of the Prophetsthe God whose spirit moved the holy men of old to speak (2Pe. 1:21)sent His angel to show to His servants things which must come to pass shortly. (Comp. Note on Rev. 1:1.)

Fuente: Ellicott’s Commentary for English Readers (Old and New Testaments)

(6-21) These verses contain the concluding words. It is the Epilogue of the Book; it deals with practical exhortations, warnings, and blessings.

Fuente: Ellicott’s Commentary for English Readers (Old and New Testaments)

EPILOGUE FOUR ATTESTATIONS TO THE TRUTH OF THIS DIVINE APOCALYPSE, Rev 22:6-19.

1. By the ANGEL briefly reiterating the divine endorsement, Rev 22:6.

6. He The interpreting angel of Rev 22:1, reaffirming the words of God, Rev 21:5.

These sayings The utterances and revelations of this book. He who was commissioned agent pronounces that the apocalypse by him delivered is both a genuine revelation and a truthful doctrine. As a mere instrument his testimony is brief, modest, and subordinate to God’s.

2. By JOHN, recapitulating the fact of God’s sending his revealing angel, and his own over-reverence to the angel, Rev 22:6-9.

6. And That John’s own words commence here is evident from the fact that he really repeats at this close the words by him uttered at the commencement of the Apocalypse, Rev 1:1; Rev 1:3. John’s words are introduced with the Hebraistically repeated and, as in Rev 22:10; Rev 22:12; Rev 22:17.

The usual method of commentators is to make this whole verse (Rev 22:6) the words of the angel; to make John here re-perform in literal act his over-reverence in Rev 19:10, and to make the angel resume at Rev 22:10 and continue to Rev 22:15. This is in many ways objectionable. It makes John mechanically and stolidly re-commit an already corrected blunder. It makes the angel speak at full length the words of God in his own person, as if he himself were God; an inadmissible assumption, inaccurately supported by Dusterdieck by the precedent of Rev 11:3, where he incorrectly assumes that “my” is uttered by the angel in the name of God.

We make John’s words begin in Rev 22:6, adding an implied saying, in italics, at the close of that verse. John thus narrates in Rev 22:6-7 God’s sending the revealing angel to him and the promise of quickly coming; and in 8 and 9 he reiterates how over-gratefully he received this angelic communication. Ahus saw and heard in Rev 22:8 is antithetical to sent to show in Rev 22:6, so that the thought of the sending by God is transmitted down to Rev 22:10, where he refers to God of Rev 22:6. The entire of Rev 22:10-15 is then spoken by God.

Holy prophets Preferable reading, of the spirits of the holy prophets; that is, of their spirits as instruments of his revealing work. By this solemn phrase John places his apocalypse on the same high level with the Old Testament, as conscious that it takes equal rank in the sacred canon. He is aware that he is making New Testament. Note, Rev 22:19.

Fuente: Whedon’s Commentary on the Old and New Testaments

‘And he said to me, These words are faithful and true, and the Lord, the God of the spirits of the prophets, sent his angels to show to his servants the things that must shortly happen.’

The speaker is concerned that John will recognise the divine validity of what he has seen. All is totally reliable and completely true. But who is the speaker? At first sight we would assume it is the angel of Rev 21:9, but in the next verse it is clearly Jesus Who is the speaker, and it is He Who is faithful and true (Rev 19:11). (However we must compare how postscripts in letters skip from one thought to another). Whoever it is he is saying that the angels have come to John from the God Who Himself guides the spirits of prophets, with Spirit inspired words. Therefore John as a prophet can be sure of the things that he has seen, for God wants His servants to know what will be. Again it is stressed that these things will ‘shortly happen’, as indeed they did. And they have gone on happening. For the ‘thousand years’, that indeterminate but complete length of time before His coming, still continues, and is still ‘a short time’ to God.

Fuente: Commentary Series on the Bible by Peter Pett

Conclusion Revelations Rev 22:6-21 serves as a conclusion to the book of Revelation.

Rev 22:10 Scripture Reference – Compare Dan 8:26.

Dan 8:26, “And the vision of the evening and the morning which was told is true: wherefore shut thou up the vision; for it shall be for many days.”

Rev 22:11  He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still.

Rev 22:11 Comments – In his quotes of “The Letters of the Churches of Lyons and Vienne,” Eusebius (A.D. 260 to 340) gives to us an interpretation of this verse as seen by the early Church during their years of persecution.

“But the blessed Blandina, last of all, having, as a noble mother, encouraged her children and sent them before her victorious to the King, endured herself all their conflicts and hastened after them, glad and rejoicing in her departure as if called to a marriage supper, rather than east to wild beasts. And, after the scourging, after the wild beasts, after the roasting seat, she was finally enclosed in a net, and thrown before a bull. And having been tossed about by the animal, but feeling none of the things which were happening to her, on account of her hope and firm hold upon what had been entrusted to her, and her communion with Christ, she also was sacrificed. And the heathen themselves confessed that never among them had a woman endured so many and such terrible tortures. ‘But not even thus was their madness and cruelty toward the saints satisfied. For incited by the Wild Beast, wild and barbarous tribes were not easily appeased, and their violence found another peculiar opportunity in the dead bodies. For, through their lack of manly reason, the fact that they had been conquered did not put them to shame, but rather the more enkindled their wrath as that of a wild beast, and aroused alike the hatred of governor and people to treat us unjustly; that the Scripture might be fulfilled: ‘He that is lawless, let him be lawless still, and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still.’” ( Ecclesiastical History 5.1.55)

He says that it refers to the cruelty of the wickedness and to the perseverance of the saints in the midst of persecutions. The wicked become more cruel and the righteous find a greater level of grace and anointing.

Rev 22:11 Comments – Note these insightful words from Marietta Davis regarding this verse. After the spirit explained to her why infant children in heaven, so tender and pure in nature, are protected from the wicked spirits bound in hell, she says:

“In this the wisdom and goodness of God is displayed. No absolutely contrary element in the world of spirits mingles with the pure and harmonious. Thus, the sacred Scripture is fulfilled that says, when speaking of these conditions, ‘He who is filthy, let him be filthy still; he who is righteous, let him be righteous still; he who is holy, let him be holy still.’ In other words, let there be a separation between the qualities of good and evil with those who have departed from the flesh, let those who are holy enjoy that without the warring of evil elements, and let the unholy come together by their affinities. For it is justly written that an impassable gulf is fixed between good and evil (Luk 16:26), since these extremes can in no way blend.” [126]

[126] Marietta Davis, Caught Up Into Heaven (New Kensington, Pennsylvania: Whitaker House, 1982), 94.

Dwight Thompson interprets Rev 22:11 to mean that once a person enters eternity, his personality is forever shaped and established. After death, a person cannot repent and change his character. What he has been shaped and molded into during his life is the way he will spend eternity. He is forever wicked while in Hell. A person in Heaven will always be just and holy in God’s presence. The only thing that we can take with us into eternity is our character.

Rev 22:16 “I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches” Comments – This verse at the end of the book of Revelation tells us that that message to the seven churches was not limited to chapters 2 and 3, but rather, the message continued throughout the entire book.

Rev 22:17 “and the bright and morning star” Comments – We know that at dusk the bright “star” that is first visible in the night is actually the planet Venus. The emphasis in Rev 22:17 is that just as Venus is the first and brightest star in the sky, so is Jesus Christ the firstborn from the dead. The stars that become visible as darkness approaches represent the Church. In fact, God likened the seed of Abraham to stars in Gen 15:5.

Gen 15:5, “And he brought him forth abroad, and said, Look now toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: and he said unto him, So shall thy seed be.”

Rev 22:18 Illustration – Today, cults add their own revelations to Scriptures.

Scripture References – Note:

Deu 4:2, “Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you.”

Deu 12:32, “What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it.”

Pro 30:6, “Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar.”

Rev 22:18-19 Comments – Adding To and Taking Away from the Scriptures Rev 22:18-19 gives readers a stern warning not to add to what is contained in the book of Revelation or to take away from it. In essence, John is saying that the canon of the Old and New Testaments are closed. The words of no other person will have the same weight of authority as do the books of the Holy Scriptures. If someone claims to speak with equal or greater authority than the Holy Scriptures, then he is a liar and subject to the judgment pronounced in these verses. Throughout history, men have tried to override Scriptures. For example, the Roman Catholic has held the words of the Pope at equal or greater authority to the Scriptures, which has led to doctrinal error because they did not close the canon of the Scriptures among themselves. Although there are many great men and women of God among the Catholic church across the world, some of their doctrines are out of bounds. Other groups have done the same because they placed their new teachings above the teachings of the Holy Scriptures. If you will watch those who teach such false doctrines, the judgments written in Rev 22:18-19 will come into their lives and God’s Word will judge them.

Rev 22:20  He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus.

Rev 22:21 “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all” Comments – In a similar way that the early apostles were instructed by Jesus to let their peace come upon the home of their host (Mat 10:13), so did Paul the apostle opening every one of his thirteen New Testament epistles with a blessing of God’s peace and grace upon his readers. Peter did the same in his two epistles. Now John the apostles invokes this blessing in his second and third epistles and Revelation. Mat 10:13 shows that you can bless a house by speaking God’s peace upon it.

Mat 10:13, “And if the house be worthy, let your peace come upon it: but if it be not worthy, let your peace return to you.”

This practice of speaking blessings upon God’s children may have its roots in the Priestly blessing of Num 6:22-27, where God instructed Moses to have the priests speak a blessing upon the children of Israel. Now John closes his epistle to the seven churches of Asia Minor by restating the blessing that he opened his epistle with in Rev 1:4.

Fuente: Everett’s Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures

John and the angel:

v. 6. And he said unto me, These sayings are faithful and true; and the Lord God of the holy prophets sent His angel to show unto His servants the things which must shortly be done.

v. 7. Behold, I come quickly; blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book.

v. 8. And I, John, saw these things and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which showed me these things.

v. 9. Then saith he unto me, See thou do it not; for I am thy fellow-servant and of thy brethren, the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book; worship God.

The visions proper have now come to an end; there is only the conclusion to consider. The first words are, as it were, the seal of God upon the entire book: And he said to me, These words are faithful and true, for the Lord God of the spirits of the prophets has sent His angel to show His servants what is bound to happen shortly; and, behold, I come very soon; blessed is he that keeps the words of, the prophecy of this book. These words may have been spoken by the angel who was the guide of John in his vision of the Holy City above, but their content seems to make it more plausible that they were spoken by the Lord Himself. He declares here that the words of prophecy which have been transmitted to John are reliable and true, for it was His intention thereby to reveal the future to His servants, to His believers. At the same time He announces that He intends to return very soon for the final Judgment, for the end of the world. Blessed, eternally happy, therefore, would be every person that would hear, heed, and keep these words, just as they were given to John to write. It is true of this book of prophecy, as well as of all the other words of the Lord: Blessed is he that hears the Word of God and keeps it. All Christians should receive strength and comfort to stand firm in the midst of the perils of the last day by the contemplation of God’s promises as contained in this book.

John now relates an incident almost identical with that of chap. 19:10: And I, John, was he who saw and heard these things; and when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel that had shown me these things. And he says to me, Not that; thy fellow-servant I am and of thy brethren, the prophets, and of those that keep the words of this book; worship God. John was overcome by the wonder of all the things that he had seen and heard in the various visions that had been presented to him; he felt the utter insignificance of man in the face of such mighty revelations. And so, in the ecstasy of feeling that possessed him, he fell down at the feet of his guide, with the intention of worshiping him. But the angel promptly interfered, bidding John worship God alone, since he was but a fellow-creature and a fellow-servant. Angels are great and mighty spirits, and they hold a relation of peculiar intimacy to God; but for all that they must not be given divine honor.

Fuente: The Popular Commentary on the Bible by Kretzmann

Rev 22:6, &c. The prophetic part of this book ends in a perfect happiness of the faithful, great above all imagination, certain as the word of prophesy, and lasting without end; a powerful encouragement and persuasive to constancy in the profession and practice of pure Christianity, whatever difficulties or dangers might attend it. What follows, to the end, is the conclusion of the whole book, or a sort of epilogue, which confirms the truth of the prophesies contained in these Revelations; shews the importance and use of them; and is well fitted to leave them with strong impressions on the hearts of readers, to preserve them from a compliance with any corruptions of the Christian faith and worship, and to encourage their constancy in the ways of truth and righteousness.

He said unto me, These sayings, &c. In the conclusion, the angel ratifies and confirms all the foregoing particulars by a repetition of the same solemn assurance which he had given, ch. Rev 19:9 and Rev 21:5 that these sayings are true and faithful; and he was commissioned by the same God, who had inspired the ancient prophets, to shew the things that must shortly be done; which would very soon begin in part to be fulfilled, and in process of time would all be completed. Behold, I come quickly, says he, Rev 22:7. For we may observe, that the angel speaks sometimes in his own person, and sometimes in the person and character of Christ, whose ambassador and representative he was. Christ is said to come upon any notable and illustrious manifestation of his providence; and all these are but so many steps, to prepare the way for his last coming to judgment. A blessing too is pronounced (as in ch. Rev 1:3.) upon those who keep the sayings of this book; and, as Vitringa devoutly wishes,

“May the Lord bestow his grace and favour upon us, who have employed some time and pains in the study andexplication of this book, that some part of this blessing also may descend to us!”

Fuente: Commentary on the Holy Bible by Thomas Coke

Rev 22:6-21 . The Epilogue , which naturally contains two parts, since it first (Rev 22:6-17 ) comprises the revelations which John had received, and then also (Rev 22:18-21 ) the prophetical book in which John had written the revelations received for the service of the churches, comes to a close. In both respects this conclusion corresponds to the introduction of the whole (chs. 1 3), in which likewise the double purpose enters, viz., that of communicating the prophetical scriptures to the churches, and that of designating the contents of revelation as such from the very beginning.

, viz., the angel, who spoke at Rev 21:9 . [4396] This is acknowledged also by Ebrard, who, however, finds here not an angelic declaration interposed anew, but a repetition of the account of John, who now once more recalls the angelic declaration previously received. Ebrard decides, logically, that in Rev 22:8 sqq. there is presented not a repetition of the event actually occurring, Rev 19:10 , but only a repetition of the account of the same. This conception, however, is not only in conflict with the mode of statement in the text, but is also improper for the reason that thereby the return, indispensable to the harmony of the entire Apoc., from the series of visions, Rev 4:1 to Rev 22:5 , revealing the future [4397] to the standpoint of the introductory vision, [4398] is cut off. Cf. also Rev 22:16 .

, . . . Cf. Rev 21:5 . The angel looks back to the entire revelation communicated to John. Cf. Rev 22:7 ; Rev 22:18 ( . . . . . . . ). So also Klief.

. “The spirits” of the prophets are here no more than in 1Co 14:32 , the effects of the Spirit present in the prophets, [4399] but are the spirits belonging to the different prophets, which God subjects to himself, and inspires and instructs by his own Spirit. Thus the Lord, who is the God of the spirits of all the prophets, has especially manifested himself now in the spirit of John; this God has communicated to John [4400] his true words of revelation by signifying to him, through the ministry of the angel, the things which are to come, in order that he may proclaim them to his servants.

, i.e., believers in general, , Rev 22:16 . [4401]

, . As the Divine authority, so also especially the chief contents of the now completed revelation are again made prominent, this occurs by the angel speaking directly in the name of the coming Lord himself, [4402] and then the parenetic inference which this affords ( , . . . ) [4403] is added by the angel.

On Rev 22:8 sqq., cf. Rev 19:10 .

. The part. pres. [4404] marks, without regard to time, the idea of (ecstatic) hearing and seeing of these things, and accordingly the prophetic dignity of John, who just by hearing and seeing all that has been “shown” him for eye and ear, has become the Divinely-appointed interpreter of the Divine mysteries. Thus the pres. particularly shows that the [4405] refers not only to what has been reported, Rev 22:6 sq., but also to the entire revelation of God. On the other hand, the aor. occurs ( . ) where that which is special, Rev 22:6 sq., is treated. The variations, consequently, which by additions to the mere recur to the first clause of Rev 22:8 , [4406] yield an absolutely false interpretation; for John falls down before the angel, because he thinks that in the speech heard ( ), Rev 22:6-7 (consider especially Rev 22:7 ), he recognizes the Lord himself.

. That the prophets are here especially emphasized as the brethren of John, distinguished from the rest of believers, [4407] is natural, because it is now the intention to assert the prophetical authority of John and his book, which the rest of believers are to receive and keep as a testimony of the Lord. Corresponding also with this, is the fact that the angel immediately imparts the command [4408] not to seal [4409] the revelations written in this book, but to communicate them to believers.

. Cf. Rev 1:3 . The nearer the time is, the more the churches need warning and consolation with respect to what is contained in this revelation.

, . . . The practical result afforded by this revelation is expressed, Rev 22:11 , by the angel himself in a parenetic address [4410] which, recurring to what the former visions proclaimed, as well concerning the eternal ruin of the godless as also the eternal glory of the righteous, applies it to both classes of men. In connection with this, the summons to those doing wrong, and the filthy ( ) [4411] to continue in their godless course, and thus to hasten to sure ruin, is not without a certain irony. [4412] [See Note XCVIII., p. 494.] The purpose of Rev 22:11 is the less to be mistaken, as the allusion to the retributive advent of the Lord not only immediately precedes ( . . , Rev 22:10 ), but also is added directly afterwards (Rev 22:12 sq.), and here the impending righteous retribution is expressly emphasized: , . . . Cf. Rev 11:18 ; Isa 40:10 ; Isa 62:11 .

. Cf. Rev 20:12 .

The words, Rev 22:12 , read like a speech out of Christ’s own mouth, those of Rev 22:13 [4413] like one of God himself; but, just because of this alternation, it is unnatural to ascribe both declarations to the angel, speaking in the name of Christ and God. On the other hand, the alternation of speakers appears too confused, if Christ himself and God be regarded as actually speaking, particularly since Rev 22:14 sq. ( . . ) is most easily regarded a parenetic digression of John. Hence the speeches of Rev 22:12-13 , at the close of the book, must be conceived of here in the same way as the keynote of the entire speech of God given from the very beginning in the introduction, Rev 1:8 . In the ancient prophetic way, John, who shows himself to be a true interpreter of Divine revelation, in two compendious Divine declarations, fixes the fundamental thoughts of this entire prophecy (cf. Rev 22:20 ); the very abruptness of these expressions is an indication that Christ and God do not actually enter into the scene as themselves speaking. The speech, Rev 22:12 sq., thus understood, forms then the transition from the speech of the angel actually present to the parenetic words of John, Rev 22:14 sq.

. . . Of God, [4414] not of Christ. [4415] On the reading advocated by Ew. ii., , . . ., see Critical Notes. This reading is deprived of its plausibility by the correct estimate of Rev 22:12-13 .

. Cf. Winer, p. 271.

. . The purpose of the godly who endeavor, according to the promised reward, to eat of the fruits of the tree of life, [4416] shall certainly be attained; hence the beatitude.

, . . . Cf. Rev 21:27 .

, . . . The ordinary idea in the declarative sense, expressed by the annexed , appears too feeble; the inner opposition to the beatitude, Rev 22:14 , more readily suggests the conceiving of the words, Rev 22:15 , as a command, so that , etc., does not mean “ foris sc. sunt ” [“without are dogs”], but “ foras sc. sunto ” [“let dogs be without”], etc. [4417]

. General designation of moral impurity; cf. , Rev 22:11 . [4418] A special reference to Sodomites [4419] does not lie in the context.

. , . . . Cf. Rev 21:8 .

Still once more there follows, Rev 22:18 , a concluding certification of the prophet, which in a double respect comprehends the introduction of the whole, since Christ, as the One revealing his own coming, not only maintains that he himself has given this revelation through the angel sent by him, [4420] but also expressly emphasizes the determination of the same for the churches. [4421] The latter occurs in an address to the churches themselves,

, which is then the more applicable if the words, Rev 22:16 , be regarded not as an actual speech coming from the Lord’s mouth, but [4422] as spoken in the name of Christ. The reading . ., i.e., “over,” in reference to the churches, [4423] not “to” the churches, [4424] nor “in [4425] the churches,” nor with the gen., as Beng. explains, [4426] since he refers the as dative to the angels of the churches, but regards the , which he also reads without a preposition, as an ablative avoids indeed the seeming difficulty that the speech of the Lord is directly applied to the churches, but creates a far greater difficulty with respect to the relation of the , which then can refer only to the prophets in general. [4427] But the idea that the Lord had the mystery of his advent proclaimed by all the Christian prophets is here not only impertinent, but is expressly rejected by the words . , which definitely marks the present revelation to the prophet John; but the application of this to the churches is throughout appropriate. Cf. also the answer of the churches, Rev 22:17 . [See Note XCIX., p. 494.] . What the first expression means figuratively, and according to the O. T. prototype, [4428] the second says more properly: the Son. [4429] In this passage the interpretation is also to be rejected, according to which the sense is that “in Christ alone the family of David stands and is preserved.” [4430] [See Note XLV., p. 216.] . Here Christ himself is called the bright morning-star; [4431] for from him issues the light of eternal day. [4432]

[4396] De Wette, Bleek, Volkm.

[4397] ., Rev 22:6 . Cf. Rev 4:1 .

[4398] Rev 1:9 to Rev 3:22 .

[4399] De Wette.

[4400] Cf. Rev 1:1 sqq.

[4401] Cf. Rev 1:1 .

[4402] Cf. Rev 22:12 ; Rev 11:3 .

[4403] Cf. Rev 14:13 , Rev 19:9 .

[4404] Cf. Rev 20:10 .

[4405] Notice the plural, which recurs also in the correl., . . , Rev 22:8

[4406] See Critical Notes.

[4407] Cf., on the other hand, Rev 19:10 .

[4408] Cf. Rev 1:11 ; Rev 1:19 .

[4409] Cf. Rev 10:4 ; Dan 8:26 ; Dan 12:4 ; Dan 12:9 .

[4410] According to Klief., an exhortation, added by John, is contained in Rev 22:11-15 .

[4411] Cf. Rev 21:27 : ; Jas 1:21 : .

[4412] Cf. Eze 3:27 . Andr., De Wette, Ebrard, Kienlen.

[4413] Cf. Rev 21:5-6 , Rev 1:8 .

[4414] Cf. Rev 12:17 , Rev 14:12 . Zllig, De Wette, Hengstenb.

[4415] Grot., Beng., etc.

[4416] Rev 22:2 ; Rev 2:7 .

[4417] Cf. Mat 5:13 ; Mat 13:48 .

[4418] Phi 3:2 ; Mat 7:6 .

[4419] Eichh., who compares Deu 23:18 .

[4420] Cf. Rev 1:1 .

[4421] Cf. Rev 1:3 sqq.

[4422] Cf. Rev 22:12 sq.

[4423] Zll., Hengstenb. Cf. Rev 10:11 .

[4424] Luth.

[4425] Vulg.

[4426] Cf. also Wolf.

[4427] Cf. Rev 22:9 . Hengstenb.

[4428] Cf. Rev 5:5 .

[4429] Andr., Ewald, etc. Cf. Virg., Aen ., IV. Revelation 12 : Credo equidem genus esse deorum.

[4430] Vitr., etc.

[4431] Cf., on the other hand, Rev 2:28 .

[4432] Cf. Rev 21:23 .

To the message announced several times from Rev 22:6 , as from the Lord’s own mouth, about which the entire revelation revolves, there now follows the answer: . Thus speak “ the Spirit ,” who, on the one hand, qualifies the prophets for announcing the future to the churches, and, on the other hand, also works faith in the churches, and thus inspires them also with hopeful longing for the coming of the Lord, [4433] “ and the Bride ,” i.e., the assembly of believers who are moved by the Spirit [4434] [see Note C., p. 494]; and thus also every individual is to speak who hears the joyful promise of the coming of the Lord ( ., . . . In connection with the latter summons, John expressly adds ( ) [4435] that the eternal blessings of life, which the coming Lord will distribute, are to be had gratuitously by every one who desires to receive them. [4436] This pertains only to the desire that is authenticated by the fidelity of obedience. The placed with great emphasis at the close, is truly of an evangelical character, and energetically defends the book against the charge of anti-Pauline Judaism. [4437]

[4433] Cf. Rev 19:10 , Rev 2:7 ; Rev 2:11 .

[4434] Cf. Rev 21:9 .

[4435] Cf. Rev 21:6 ; Isa 55:1 .

[4436] Cf. Rev 1:3 .

[4437] Cf. Rom 3:24 .

NOTES BY THE AMERICAN EDITOR

XCVIII. Rev 22:11 . , . . .

Alford finds a parallel in our Lord’s saying, Mat 26:45 : “ ‘Sleep on now, and take your rest;’ also Eze 20:39 ;” and interprets the irony: “ ‘The time is so short that there is hardly room for change;’ the lesson conveyed in its depth being, ‘Change while there is time.’ ”

NOTES BY THE AMERICAN EDITOR

XCIX. Rev 22:16 .

Luthardt: “A congregational book; not a book merely for a few, and for a small circle, is this book of prophecy. And Jesus himself expressly confirms the fact that it is from Him. Who will venture to contradict Him?”

NOTES BY THE AMERICAN EDITOR

C. Rev 22:17 .

Luthardt: “The Spirit, who lives in the Church, and the Bride, the Church, that lives in the Spirit, say ‘Come!’ This is all her sighing and longing.” Hengstenberg, however, qualifies this: “Not the Spirit who dwells in all believers (Rom 8:26 ), but the Spirit of prophecy (Rev 19:10 ); the Spirit of the prophets (Rev 22:6 ), in which John was on the Lord’s Day (Rev 1:10 , Rev 4:2 ), who also speaks through John in ch. Rev 14:13 , who proclaims the promises in the seven epistles. The Spirit, and John his organ, as the representative of the Bride, proclaim ‘ Come .’ This ‘Come,’ spoken in her name by the organ of the Church, is a fact; they speak, and hence there follows the summons to all the individual members of the Church to join in this ‘ Come .’ ”

Fuente: Heinrich August Wilhelm Meyer’s New Testament Commentary

THE EPILOGUE

Rev 22:6-21

1. The Angel and John; or the Mediators of the Apocalypse

6And he said unto me, These sayings [words] are faithful and true: and the Lord God of the holy [om. holyins. spirits36 of the] prophets sent his angel to shew unto his servants the [what] things which [om. which] must [ins. come to pass] shortly be done 7[om. be done], [ins. And]37 behold, I come quickly: blessed is he that keepeth the 8sayings [words] of the prophecy of this book. And [ins. it was] I John [ins. who heard and]38 saw these things, and heard them [om., and heard them]. And when I had [om. had] heard and seen [saw]39, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which [who] shewed me these things. 9Then saith he [And he saith] unto me, See thou do it [om. See thou do itins. Take heed] not: for [om. for] I am thy [om. thyins, a] fellow servant [ins. of thee], and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which [those who] keep the sayings [words] of this book: worship God. 10And he saith unto me, Seal not the saying [words] of the prophecy of this book: for40 the time is at hand [near]. 11He that is unjust, let him be unjust [Let him that doeth injustice, do injustice] still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy [and let the polluted41 pollute himself] still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous [and let the righteous work righteousness42] still: and he that is holy, let him be holy [and let the holy () sanctify himself () still.

2. Jesus, the Author of the Apocalypse; the Spirit; and the Bride

12And, [om. And,43] Behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according [om. every man accordingins. render to each] 13as his work shall be [om. shall beins. is].44 I am [amins. the] Alpha and [ins. the] Omega, the beginning and the end, [om. the beginning and the 14end,] the first and the last [ins., the beginning and the end]45. Blessed are they that do his commandments [om. that do his commandmentsins. wash their robes]46, that they may have [ins. the] right to [or authority over ( )], the tree of life, and may enter in through [om. in throughins. by] the gates 15into the city. For [om. For]47 Without are [ins. the] dogs, and [ins. the] sorcerers, and whoremongers [the fornicators], and [ins. the] murderers, and [ins. the] idolaters, and whosoever [every one that] loveth and maketh a lie. 16I Jesus have [om. have] sent mine [my] angel to testify unto you these things in [concerning] the churches.48 I am the root and the offspring of David, and [om. and] the bright and 17[om. andins., the] morning star. And the Spirit and the bride say, Come.49 And let him that heareth say, Come.14 And let him that is athirst [thirsteth] come.14 And whosoever [om. And50 whosoeverins.: he that] will, let him take51 the water of life freely.

3. Testimony to the Sanctity of the Apocalypse

18For [om. For52] I testify unto every man [one] that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man [one] shall [om. shall] add unto these things [om. these thingsins. them], God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: 19And if any man [one] shall [om. shall] take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of [om. out ofins. from] the book [om. bookins. tree53] of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things [om. and from the things] which are [have been] written in this book. 20He which [who] testifieth these things saith, Surely [Yea,] I come quickly: [.] Amen. [;] Even so, [om. Even so,54] come, Lord Jesus.

Conclusion

21The grace of our [om. ourins. the55] Lord Jesus Christ [om. Christ56] be with you [om. you57] all [or ins. the saintsor om. all and ins. the saints]58. Amen [or om. Amen].59

EXEGETICAL AND CRITICAL

SYNOPTICAL VIEW

The Epilogue of the Apocalypse is strongly suggestive of the Epilogue of the Johannean Gospel, just as the Prologue of the Apocalypse forms a pendant to the Prologue concerning the Logos. In the one case as in the other, the Coming of Christ is a fundamental thought. In the one case as in the other, the Scripture closes with a reflection relative to the Book itself; and in both cases, a mysterious, clare-obscure mode of expression is spread, like a veil, over the whole. The intimate connexion of the Apocalyptic Epilogue and Prologue is evident upon the most cursory comparison.

Here, again, we distinguish three main divisions. The first, which may be superscribed with the title of the Angel and John, reverts, in Rev 22:6-11, to the mediators or instrumentalities of the Apocalypse, and accordingly forms a parallel to Rev 22:1-6 of the Prologue. In the second division Jesus appears, as the Author of the Apocalypse, and over against His revelation is set the longing of the Spirit and the Bride for His Advent (Rev 22:12-17). The parallel passage in the Prologue is found in Rev 22:7-10. The third division is formed by the testimony to the inviolable sanctity of the Apocalypse (Rev 22:18-20). Then follow the closing wordsa prayer to the Lord, and a wish for a blessing upon all readers.

[Rev 22:6.] And he said unto me. The conclusion reverts to the beginning. The series of visions is closedhence, the mediators of the vision once more make their appearance. First, mention is made of the Angel of this Revelation (Rev 1:1). According to De Wette, Bleek, Dsterdieck et al., this is the same Angel who speaks in Rev 21:9. In other words, the Angel of the entire Revelation is accounted a special Angel from the group of the seven Angels of the Vials of Anger, and we are outside of the visions and yet, again, within them. Thus, too, the incident related Rev 19:10, is held to be repeated hereeither the incident itself or the account of it. The former hypothesis would cast a shade upon the Apostles aptness to learn; the latter would implicate his ability as a writer. Neither the one nor the other assumption is admissible. In the scene portrayed Rev 19:10, John believed that he recognized the Lord Himself in the form of the messenger of Christ; here, it is the angelic form in which the Lord manifests Himself to him that he, in his profound reverence, identifies, wrongly, with the Person of Christ. Hence the deprecating words of the two Angels are very different. I am thy fellow-servant and one of thy brethren who have the witness of Jesus, says one. I am thy fellow-servant and one of thy brethren the Prophets and of them who keep the words of this Book, speaks the other. As the Angel of the Revelation, he places himself on a line not only with the Prophets, but also with the pious readers of the Apocalypse; this is, doubtless, owing to the fact that Christ assumes His angelic form in the sphere of prophetic, human spirit-life and pious longing for His coming. We translate here, therefore: Worship not the personal medium of the manifestation of Christ; just as we might say, Do not worship the Bible, though it is the medium of the revelation of God. Therefore the Angel further distinguishes the words of the Revelation, whose certainty and reality he affirms, from his mission from the Lord, Whom he identifies with the God of the spirits of the Prophets. Here, again, the conceptions of God and Christ run into one, as is frequently the case in the Johannean writings.

We apprehend the words , here, as in Rev 1:1, as significant of the rapidity of the course of the things predicted, for the things of the thousand years, which form but one section of the whole eschatological time, can not be conceived of as happenning soon [or, shortly] in the ordinary sense.

Christ identifies Himself with the Angel in the declaration, Behold, I come soon [quickly], or rapidly, and conjoins with this declaration the beatitude expressive of the truth that he alone preserves the right position toward the Coming of the Lord, who keeps the words of the prophecy and makes them his guide.

The Seer now seems to come to himself after his grand visional ecstasy, as was the case, after similar ecstasies, with the Disciples on the Mount of Transfiguration, with the Apostle Peter, Act 12:11 and Paul, 2Co 12:2; he is immediately overpowered, however, by a sense of the great grace which he has been deemed worthy to receive with this Revelation. And I Johnnot any indifferent Johna man by the name of Johnam the hearer and seer of these things. And now he would fain fall down and worship before the Angel of the Revelation, as he fell down before him like a dead man at the beginning of this Revelation (Rev 1:17). Upon this he receives the prohibition before referred to, because it is his duty to distinguish between the Lord Himself and His angelic appearance, clothed in the materials of prophetic visions and Christian ideals. On the other hand, he receives the direction not to seal the words of the prophecy. He is to communicate them to the Churches and to stimulate the reading and exposition of them, because the time is near, because they are designed to keep Christians awake, and, if they slumber, to rouse them.

And now follows a saying which is peculiarly suggestive of the Gospel of John, especially of the fearful words, What thou doest [art about to do], do quickly [Joh 13:27]. Let him that doeth injustice [or, unrighteousness] do injustice [or unrighteousness] still. The meaning of this is that the time is great [weighty with import] and swift, and presses to decision; for every development, in evil and in good, the space granted is but short. The ironical tone which pertains to the first two exhortations is limited, first, by the remark that the following two sentences can have nothing of irony in them, and, further, by the earnest consideration that the seed of evil is peculiarly prospered by being brooded over, in the delusion that there is an endless time before the judgment, if, indeed, there be any judgment at all. The style of speech here employed is, doubtless, in general expressive of the following admonition: Consider that your actions are rapidly progressing to their end. The relation of moral development on both sides is pertinently intimated. The commission of unrighteousness courses into filthiness, into a filthy habit of thought and a corresponding mode of conduct; the righteousness of faith, on the other hand, develops, through the practice of right-doing, into a sanctification of life.

In the second division of the Epilogue, Jesus Himself is brought to view, with His immediate words. He announces Himself as the Recompenser, with reference to the proclamation of the Angel that the time is near and presses all men to decision. Behold, I come quickly, and My reward with Me, He says, in the words in which His Coming is announced by the Prophet Isaiah (Isa 40:10; Isa 62:11; comp. isa 11:18). He will appear as Judge, because His life is the principle and ground-law of the history of the world. This He expresses in a threefold manner. Because he is the Alpha, He must be the Omega. Because He is the First, He must be the Last. The first formula characterizes Him as the first, and hence the last, life-idea. The second formula characterizes Him as the first, and therefore the last, ideal life-form. The third formula characterizes Him as the innermost, primarily principial, and therefore, also, final life-power and substance. Because He is the Principle, He must be the Final Goal. The bearing of these words upon the judgment (in accordance with Matthew 25 and Act 17:31) is plainly manifest in the following beatitude.

In comparison with the reading, Blessed are they who wash their robes, we cannot possibly regard the other reading, Blessed are they who keep His commandments, as correct, although the sense may be the same. We have here to do with a festal symbolic expression, suggestive of the wedding garment and the saying, These have washed their robes in the blood of the Lamb (Rev 7:14). These shall enter into the Holy City, with authority to eat of the trees of life. For upon the perfect appropriation of the cross of Christ, rests the putting on of the snow-white robe of righteousness, and this is the condition, at once of an eternal vital development and vital joy, and of entrance into the fellowship of eternal life.

The continued existence of a without, in contrast to an entrance into the Paradise of life, is expressed by an antithesis in the weightiest of words. Those who are excluded are again, apparently, cited in a group of six, but in reality a quinary is probably contemplated, as in the figure of the foolish virgins. The arrangement of individual characters also differs from that observed Rev 21:8. In the latter passage, the lost were contrasted with the idea of the bravery of the conquerors; hence the fearful had the precedence. Here they are contrasted with the picture of heavenly puritythe blessed, arrayed in their robes of honor; hence dogs take the precedence, as allegorical figures of spiritual uncleanness and commonness (see Mat 7:6; Php 3:2; 2Pe 2:21). Sorcerers have profaned and violated nature; fornicators have profaned and violated the personal and physical life; murderers have profaned and violated the image of God in their neighbor; idolaters have profaned and violated the symbols of the Divine and religion itself; lovers and practicers of falsehood in generalas a wider class of idolatershave profaned and violated the consecrated reality and truth of life.

Jesus next definitively distinguishes Himself from the sending of His Angel. He declares that He has Himself sent the Angel to Christians to testify to them of the future in regard to the Churches; the dignity and weight of a testimony is thus assigned to His word. The reading chosen by us [ .] we have designated in the Text, and Gram. Notes as highly momentous. Even in this expression, which has in many instances failed of being understood, the end reaches back into the beginning. The Apocalypse, namely, is in reality the Book of the future of the Christian Churches, symbolically represented, as they are, by the Seven Churches.

In conclusion, Christ places Himself, as the most glorious Man, the Son of man, over against the longing and expectation of the faithful. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, the Kernel in the kernel of the Theocracy, the ideal ground and the ideal blossom of the Davidic line, which rises as prominently in the midst of Israel as chosen Israel amongst the nations. Thus, as the great Promised One, He is the subject of all the longing of Israel, and, no less than this, the bright star which has risen upon mankind as the Morning Star of a new world. And well does He know that the heart of mankind goes out to Him with throbs of expectation and yearning. The Spirit in the Church and the Church as Bride answer Him with the cry, Come! And every one who hears and understands this cry is directed to join in the cry of longing, Come! But all who thirst, that is, all men of longing, must first come to Him on the platform of the spiritual life, and receive of the water of life freely [without price], in order that they may be able to sum up their yearning in that higher eschatological longing which can join in the cry, Come, Lord Jesus!

The third division of the Epilogue is the concluding attestation of the Book, and is suggestive of the attestation of the Johannean Gospel (Rev 21:24).

In this attestation we, in company with almost all exegetes, can see the words of the Prophet, only; not, with Ebrard, a remark of the Lord concerning the Book of John. In this severe verdict, reference is had not to readings and variations of opinion, but to augmentations or diminutions of the eschatological view of the world here expressed. It is an inviolable vital law that the fanatic, in the same degree in which he heightens the conceptions of judgment above the Biblical measure, loads himself with the judgment of those torments which he has imagined; thus, e.g., the medival exaggeration of the idea of hell brought hell torments in abundance upon the fanatics themselves. And on the other hand, similarly, it is a fact that the denier or diminisher of the prospects of Christian hope impairs his own inheritance of hope and bliss, to the same degree in which he takes away from the fullness of the Christian prospect. Every misdemeanor against the truth falls back upon him who commits it (see Introduction, p. 63, and Mat 5:19). The reference is not to transient sentiments, but to maxims which become permanent in a conduct consistently regulated by them. Thus, it is beyond question that consummate fanaticism crystallizes into a disposedness for torment; consummate libertinism into a complete incapacity for even the faintest idea of the conditions of a higher human life of blessedness. These thoroughly true thoughts meet us here as warning verdicts [vera dicta], hyperbolically expressed, designed for the protection of this glorious Book, which, in spite of these its guards, has been, and still continues to be, greatly mis-esteemed.

The Seer is sure that, together with himself, Christ attests his Book. He therefore introduces Him also, in the character of a witness, and expresses, in His testimony, the ground thought of his Book: Yea, I come quickly.

Hereupon, giving vent to that which has been the desire of his heart through his whole life, and especially during his old age, he utters the following sentence, by which he takes the Lord at His word in the name of the Church as well as in his own name: Amen, come, Lord Jesus.

In conclusion, he pronounces a benediction upon all who, with himself, are awaiting the coming of the Lord, and who constitute the true Saints of the. Latter Days. The benediction is couched in the following grand and worthy terms: The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with all saints. With all saintsin this adjunct, the Apocalypse, in its significance, is consistent with itself.

EXPLANATIONS IN DETAIL

Rev 22:6. And he said unto me.With perfect, justice, Ebrard combats the view entertained by most commentators, to the effect that the Angel who is here spoken of is the same who has been the spokesman since Rev 21:9; the. same exegete maintains that, on the contrary, it is the Angel (of the Revelation) of whom mention is made in Rev 1:1. With this view, however, he conjoins the erroneous assumption that what John here reports, is nothing new, but only a reminiscence of former things; first, of the declaration previously made by the same Angel (Rev 21:5) and, secondly, of the certain truth that the entire Revelation is of Divine origin. But visional conditions do not come to an end suddenly any more than they begin suddenly; they die away gradually, even as they began. The face of Moses was still shining when he went down from the mount into the camp.

These words are, etc.By this is meant the entire Revelation now concluded, as in Rev 22:7; Rev 22:18.

The Lord God of the spirits of the Prophets.We apprehend these words as referring to Jehovah as the God of revelation, or, in other words, we find here a concrete summing together of God and Christ, as in the concluding words of 1Jn 5:20.

The mission of the Angel is from the Spirit of revelation, as the God of the spirits of the Prophets, the Source and Author of all prophecies, hence also of the Apocalypse (Joh 5:39; 1Pe 1:10-12).

The spirits of the Prophets.According to De Wette, reference is had to the inspiration produced by the Spirit of God, in opposition to which Dsterdieck judiciously remarks that the spirits belonging, respectively, to the different Prophets are intended, which spirits God renders subservient to Himself.

His servants.See Revelation 1.

Rev 22:7. And behold, I come quickly.Adduction of Christs word, in corroboration of the expression . As in Rev 22:6 the Divine authority was cited, so here the main tenor of the Revelation now completed is made prominent. This is effected by the Angels speaking directly in the name of the coming Lord Himself. Duesterdieck. We cannot perceive why the following parnesis should be regarded as added by the Angel. The Angel utters the whole,in such a manner, however, as to introduce the Lord as speaking in Rev 22:7. It is this very fact that gives occasion to what followsviz., the error, in the entertainment of which the Seer attempts to worship. Finally, we must again call attention to the subtile distinction that is to be made between the Lord Himself and the form of His revelation; not only personal Angels, but also symbolical ones, are a forbidden object of worship. This is suggestive of the second commandment, Thou shalt not make unto thee any image, concretely apprehended; it also teaches us how difficult it is for man, in his admiration of the Divine, to leave that and arrive at the perfect worship of God.

Rev 22:8. And it was I, John.The gradual coming to ones self, e.g., out of sleep, out of somnambulic sleep, out of profound contemplation, out of an inspired or demonically excited condition, is a highly interesting phenomenon; its culmination is formed by the gradual return of ordinary consciousness [Tagesbewusstsein = day-consciousness] after the ecstasy of the Prophet.60And I, John.See Syn. View; comp. chap. 1.

Who heard and saw [] these things.On the present form of the participle, see Dsterd. Though the visional unfolding of the things is over, that which the Seer has heard and seen continues to be ever spiritually present before his eyes.

And when I heard.The reading which adds and saw, beautifully brings out the continued astonishment of the Seer.

I fell down to worship.In Rev 19:10 he was in danger of identifying a personal Angel or beatified saint with the Lord; here he is in the more subtile peril of confounding a symbolic angelic form with the Lord Himself.

Rev 22:9. Take heed not. (see Syn. View).

Rev 22:10. Seal not, etc.See Rev 1:11; Rev 1:19; Rev 10:4; Dan 8:26; Dan 12:4; Dan 12:9. It may be asked, what is the difference between a sealing and a not sealing in the case of two Books which yet have been diffused in an identical or a similar manner. Irrespective of the fact that there is something symbolical in the expression, which declares, on the one hand, that the Book shall for a long time continue to be obscure and uncomprehended, or, on the other hand, that the Book shall be read, the antithesis also contains a distinction for the authors of the Books in question and for the Church. The symbolic mode of presentation is in itself a species of sealing; a reference to the key of symbolism, such as is frequently to be met with in John, is an unsealing (comp. Mat 13:11 sqq.). And thus there is also a difference in the ecclesiastic reservation of the Book and the submission of it for congregational edification. The Hierarchy has sealed the whole Bible; with us, even the Apocalypse is at least freely submitted to the Church for her edification.

For the time is near.A motive for the diffusion, reading and explanation of the Apocalypse in the Christian Church.

Rev 22:11. He that doeth injustice.This form is elucidated by analogies; not only by the already cited address of the Lord to Judas (Joh 13:27), but also by the following passages: Mat 23:32; Mat 26:45, and, in a less degree, Eze 3:27. And though there may be something of irony in the first two propositions (De Wette, et al.), there is nought of that character in the last two, viz., and let the righteous, etc.If we seek for a common fundamental thought that shall lie at the basis of all four propositions, it is contained in the following words: Since the judgment is at the door, let every one quickly prepare himself for it after his own free choice. That this very idea indirectly offers to the wicked the strongest admonition to repent, is self-evident.

Work righteousness still.The discardure of the erroneous reading is of recognized importance as bearing upon the discussion relative to the meaning of .

Rev 22:12-13. Behold, I come quickly.Dsterdieck: The words of Rev 22:12 sound like a communication from Christs own mouth. Most certainly. Those of Rev 22:13 (comp. chaps. Rev 1:8; Rev 21:5-6) are as the language of God Himself. But because God calls Himself the Alpha and the Omega, it does not follow that Christ, the Son of God, may not also so denominate Himself. The Apostle Paul writes concerning God: Of Him, and through Him, and to Him are all things (Rom 11:36). And again in Col 1:16 he writes concerning Christ: All things were created in Him all things were created through Him and to Him. Because Dsterdieck thinks that this presumed change of speakers must not be hypothesized, he affirms that John speaks these words after the manner of the ancient Prophets. And yet John here distinguishes his own speech, the speech of the Angel, the express speech of Jesus (Rev 22:16), and the speech of the Spirit! The motive for this singular retreat upon the old Prophetic language, (which might itself be called in question, if it were employed with the latitude and inexplicitness which would attach to its use in the present case,) seems to be simply Christs alleged inability to say: I am the Alpha and the Omega.

Rev 22:14. Blessed are they who wash their robes.See Syn. View. The other reading see discussed in Dsterdieck, pp. [574,] 580.

Rev 22:15. Without are the dogs.Dsterdieck apprehends the words as a commandforas sunto. Out with the dogs! Such a conception, however, does but obscure the clearness of the antithesis; it would be a sort of penal judgment, instead of a representation of the contrast which the region of the lost presents to Paradisea representation which is a sermon in itself. Be it observed that the term, the dogs, is decidedly favorable to the reading, Blessed are they who wash, etc. Dogs.A special reference to sodomites (Eichhorn, who compares Deu 23:18) is not to be gathered from the context. Duesterdieck.

Rev 22:16. I, Jesus.Even these words, according to Dsterdieck, are spoken by John in the name of Jesus. And it is possible for him to entertain this opinion after all the distinct intimations which have previously been given concerning the speakers!

To testify unto you.The relates to the servants of God, as Rev 22:6 (comp. Rev 1:1). The servants of God are, through the instrumentality of the Apocalypse, constituted watchmen and warners of the Church. In this sense, even the Seven Epistles are not directly addressed to the Churches. Dsterdieck thinks, with Hengstenberg, that , in case it is to be retained, refers to the Prophets.

The Root and the Offspring [Lange: Geschlecht=race].The antithesis between root and scionas the human parallel to the Divine antithesis of Alpha and Omegais obliterated by the following explanation of Dsterdieck: That which the first term [] declares figuratively and in accordance with Old Testament precedent (comp. Rev 5:5), is more literally affirmed by the second [ ]: the son (Andr., Ew., et al.). According to Hengstenberg also, the root of David is significant of the product of the root. The citation of Rev 5:5 proves nothing.

The Bright, the Morning Star.In meaning, the passage Rev 2:28, where Christ promises to give the morning star, is entirely akin to this. Christ is the bright Morning Star of the coming day of eternity; He therefore also gives the morning star of a spiritual vision of the future (see above, Rev 2:28).

Rev 22:17. And the Spirit.These words, according to De W., Hengstenberg, Dsterdieck, et al., are an answer to the foregoingan answer which the Apocalyptist is represented as speaking in the name of the Spirit and the Bride. But since John utters his own Come, Lord Jesus in Rev 22:20, we cannot suppose that it was his intention to make so wide a distinction between himself and the Spirit and the Bride; and, moreover, the words, Let him that thirsteth come, etc., are in favor of the assumption that we have here the concluding words of Jesus Himself. A singular view is that of Ebrard, who holds Rev 22:17 to be a reply to the speech of Jesus, and regards Jesus as again becoming the speaker in Rev 22:18, with a view to taking the Book under His own patronage.

Let him that thirsteth, etc.See chap Rev 21:6; Isa 55:1; Mat 5:6; Joh 7:37.

Freely [gratuitously].The last full evangelic tone in the New Testament.

Rev 22:18-19. I testify unto every one, etc.Testification is a solemn asseveration which binds or makes responsible those to whom it is addressed (Deu 4:2; Pro 30:5-6). We repeat the remark already made by us upon this passage, viz., that, in accordance with the symbolic expression of the Apostle, the reference is not simply to the exegetical treatment of the Apocalypse, as is usually assumed. There are many who add gloom to the Christian view of the world, and many who diminish its depth, without making use of the Apocalypse in thus doing. It is, indeed, also true that any exegetical tampering with the Apocalypse is inadmissible, and the one-sidednesses of exegesis are manifoldly connected with the one-sidednesses of fanaticism or spiritualism [Spiritualismus]. The paronomasia, , , is no mere play upon words; it is indicative, rather, of the fact that transgressions against the purport of the Apocalypse are connected with the inner condition of the guilty one, and hence infallibly rebound upon him, or that, as violations of the Divine faithfulness and truth, they are reflected back in violations of self.

Every one that heareth, etc.That is, every one who is present at the reading aloud of the Book in Church; it is, therefore, designed to be read aloud in Church. According to Vitringa, Bleek, et al., the threat is directed against careless transcribers; according to Ewald and De Wette, against oral inaccuracies of repetition. Dsterdieck justly regards each of these explanations as insufficient, and lays stress upon the keeping of the contents of the Book, the revelation of God, maintaining that it is upon the falsification of that revelation that the curse is laid. Luthers words of censure, contained in his preface of 1522, see cited in Dst., p. 582. Bleek is of opinion that Luther was not entirely wrong in taking offence at the words. De Wette also thinks the threat too harsh. Hengstenberg apprehends the words as referring to such additions and omissions as affect the actual kernel of the Book (p. 452 sqq. [Trans.]). According to Ebrard, these words are the seal which Christ Himself impresses upon the Apocalypse.

Rev 22:20. He who testifieth these things saith.Here Jesus is again introduced as speaking. He is brought in, primarily, as a Witness Who supplements the foregoing testimony of John, but at the same time He indirectly appears as a Witness for the whole Apocalypse. He sums up His testimony in the all-corroborating and all-embracing affirmation: Yea, I come quickly.

The Seer replies to the word of the Lord with a grand and simple prayer: Amen; come, Lord Jesus.

Rev 22:21. The grace.See Rev 1:4. The of the Rec. does, indeed, more nearly agree with Rev 1:4, but it is, on the one hand, not as well supported as our reading, and, on the other hand, the reading with all saints, is in perfect harmony with the solemnity of the conclusion.

[ADDITIONAL NOTE ON THE EPILOGUE]

By the American Editor

[There are several matters concerning this conclusion of the Book of Divine Revelation which the writer desires to present for consideration:

I. The Authorship

The entire Epilogue is the utterance of Jesus, by the mouth of His representative Angel (the Angel of Rev 21:9), to Johnwith the exception of the second clause of Rev 22:6, Rev 22:8-9, the last clause of Rev 22:20, and Rev 22:21. In this proposition there are but three points which need discussion, all of which are opposed to the views of our author.

1. The Angel that addressed John was the Angel of Rev 21:9. That Christ spoke through a representative in Rev 22:7, is admitted by all; that this was the Angel of Rev 21:9 is the point to be proved. The of Rev 22:6 shows that the speaker there mentioned must have been the one speaking in the immediately preceding versesthe phraseology forbids the idea that another speaker had been introduced. The of Rev 22:7, together with the absence of any introducing clause, requires the conclusion that the same speaker continued his address; and this conclusion is confirmed by the of Rev 22:8manifestly, the Angel at whose feet the Apostle fell was the one who had been showing him the things previously described. A difficulty in reference to this interpretation may suggest itself to some minds, arising from the generally received opinion that the Angel of Rev 21:9 was (as were all the Angels of the Vials) a Symbol; his symbolic character may be regarded as inconsistent with the language of Rev 22:9, I am thy fellow servant, etc. Possibly he was an Immediate Symboli. e., a simulacrumof a real Angel; possibly, however, real Angels took part in all the scenes described. But however this may have been,admitting the truth of the first supposition, there was neither impropriety nor incongruity in representing the simulacrum of an Angel as using the language of an Angel.

2. The second clause of Rev 22:6 is an explanatory remark introduced by John. It seems to the writer inconceivable, that, if the declaration, The Lord God sent His Angel to show, etc., had been made to the Apostle, he should immediately after have offered Divine honors to that creature. The natural hypothesis seems to be that(1) in Rev 22:7, the Angel, as the representative of Jesus, spoke in the first person, Behold, I come quickly, and John at once drew the conclusion that the speaker, though in the form of a servant, must be his Lorda natural mistake and one immediately corrected; and (2) the Apostle in his narrative introduced the explanatory clause of Rev 22:6.

3. The address of Rev 22:18-20 (first clause), is the utterance of Christ through His Angel, and not a declaration of the Apostle. This, in the judgment of the writer, is placed beyond doubt by a comparison of the first words of Rev 22:18 with those of Rev 22:20; the One who testifies is the One who says, I come quickly.

II. The Duty of Studying the Apocalypse

That it is the duty of every Christian to study this Book appears from the following declarations of the Epilogue:1. The Apocalypse was given for the information of the Saints, Rev 22:6; Rev 16:2. It was designed to be read in the congregations, Rev 22:18 (I testify unto every one that heareth); see also comment on Rev 1:3, p. 90. 3. Its utterances were not sealed, i.e., closed up from individual comprehension (see foot-note*, first column, p. 193), Rev 22:10. 4. A blessing is to be bestowed upon those who keep the words of the prophecy, Rev 22:7; which keeping requires, of course, preceding study. 5. A woe shall be visited upon all who add to, or diminish from, the words of the Book, Rev 22:18-19.

The Epilogue, in implying the duty of study, agrees with the Prologue; see Rev 1:3, and the additional comment thereon, p. 90.

III. Angel Worship

The Am. Ed. cannot agree with those who hold that in the incident recorded in Rev 22:8, and in the similar incident mentioned in Rev 19:10, the Apostle was guilty of an attempt to worship a creature, knowing him to be suchi.e., that he was guilty of idolatry. Alford, in his comment on Rev 19:10, takes that position, remarking: The Angel seems to him worthy of some of that reverence which belongs to God Himself. The reason given by Dsterdieck, that in both cases John imagined the Lord Himself to be speaking to him, is sufficiently contradicted by the plain assertion, here in Rev 17:1, and there in Rev 22:8 itself, that it was not a Divine Person, but simply an Angel. In answer it may be said(1) So far as Rev 17:1 is concerned, manifestly it is the Apostles own remark, and probably was not penned until after the incident described in Rev 19:10, i. e., after he had received the information that the one who spoke to him was a mere Angel; and (2) In reference to Rev 22:8, there is nothing in the record to forbid the hypothesis presented above in I. that it was an explanatory clause introduced by the Apostle. It seems utterly inconceivable, first, that John, either as a Jew or as an Apostle of Christ, could have offered worship to a creature, knowing him to be such; and, in the second place, that, if he had done so, he would not have been sharply rebuked for his idolatry. In neither case does the language of the Angel necessarily imply rebuke; in each case it may be interpreted, and most naturally interpreted, as a warning against error in conduct, and a rectification of the mistake whence the error was about to proceed. It may also be remarked that, unless the Apostle had been positively informed to the contrary, he might naturally have supposed that one of the Angels of the Vials was Jesus Himself. Let it be observed that, during the pouring out of the Vials, the words of Jesus, Behold, I come as a thief, had been utteredby whom we know not, but the context would lead us to suppose that they were spoken from amongst the Seven Angels (Rev 16:15). This might naturally have excited the suspicion that Jesus was there. When the Angel who first came to him used the expression, These are the true words of God (Rev 19:10), it should occasion little surprise that John supposed him to be his Lord. And when another of the Seven, representing Jesus, adopted the language of Jesus, Behold, I come quickly (Rev 22:7), can we wonder that the Apostle leaped to the conclusion that Jesus in person was with him?

It is scarce necessary to remark that, whatever hypothesis we may adopt as to the subjective condition of John, the words of the Angels convey most positive condemnation of all creature worship.

IV. The Teaching of Christ as to His Twofold Nature

The twofold nature of Jesus is most clearly set forth. His humanity in the words, I am the offspring ( =race, stock, descent) of David (Rev 22:16); His Divinity, not less clearly, in Rev 22:12-13; Rev 22:16 (the root).

V. The Time of the Second Advent

At first glance, the words of Jesus, I come quickly (Rev 22:7), seem to be inconsistent with the idea that the Advent thus promised is still future. Probably this declaration, more than aught else, has induced the opinion, amongst those who hold it, that the Advent is past.

That the Coming mentioned in Rev 22:7 is the one foretold Rev 1:7 (and also Dan 7:13; Mat 24:27; Mat 24:30; Mat 26:64; Mar 14:62; Act 1:9; Act 1:11, etc.), seems to be evident upon comparison; and that that Advent has not taken place seems also to be evident upon an examination of the passages referred to, together with their contexts,there has been nothing in history that satisfies the description of events accompanying the Advent. We must look for an explanation of the quickly () in the declarations of 2Pe 3:18 and Luk 18:7-8. See also footnote* (first column), p. 89.

VI. The Final Warning

Alford comments on Rev 22:18-19 as follows: The adding and taking away are in the application and reception in the heart; and so it is not a mere formal threat to the copier of the Book. . . . . All must be received and realized. This is at least an awful warning both to those who despise and neglect this Book, and to those who add to it by irrelevant and trifling interpretations.

VII. The Final Prayer

In the prayer, Amen; come, Lord Jesus (Rev 22:20), the Apostle pours forth the longing of his instructed heart for the realization of that blessed hope of the Churchthe glorious Appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ (Tit 2:13). In this prayer is summed up all that the Christian heart can desirethe destruction of the power of Satan; the deliverance of the creature from the bondage of corruption; the banishment of sin and sorrow from the individual heart and from the world; the restoration of all things; the establishment of the Kingdom of righteousness; the beholding by Jesus in fullness of the travail of His soul, the bestowment upon Him in completeness of His promised reward.

Let each member of the Church militant, mourning the absence of her Head, but cheered by the promise that He will come again, unite with the Apostle in the longing cryAmen; Come, Lord Jesus.E. R. C.]

Footnotes:

[1]Rev 21:9. [Crit. Eds. reject this clause with . A. B* P., et al.E. R. C.]

[2]Rev 21:9. [The Angels, not the vials, are, grammatically, represented as being full of the plagues; the original is .E. R. C.]

[3]Rev 21:9. We give the reading .

[4]Rev 21:11. [Crit. Eds. omit the copula with . A. B *. P.E. R. C.]

[5]Rev 21:11. [The true meaning of is that which gives light.E. R. C.]

[6]Rev 21:12. [The second] is omitted by the Rec. [Lange retains. It is given by Lach., Tisch. (1859), with A. B*., Vulg., Cop., Syr., et al.; it is omitted by Tisch. (8th Ed.) with . P.; it is bracketed by Alf. and Treg.E. R. C.]

[7]Rev 21:14. [Crit. Eds. give with . A. B*. P., Vulg., et al.E. R. C.]

[8]Rev 21:15. Codd. A. B*. [*. P.] give .

[9]Rev 21:16. before should be omitted. [So Crit. Eds. with . A. B*. P., et al.E. R. C.]

[10]Rev 21:19. A. B*. [3a. P.], et al. omit .

[11]Rev 21:21. [See foot-note, Rev 11:8, p. 231.E. R. C.]

[12]Rev 21:22. [See Add. Comm. on Rev 1:8, p. 93.E. R. C.]

[13]Rev 21:23. Codd. A. B*. [1. P.]. et al., omit after .

[14]Rev 21:24. The Rec. gives ; a reading concocted, most probably, in explanation of the word . [ is omitted by . A. B*. P., Vulg., Cop., Syr., th., et al.E. R. C.]

[15]Rev 21:24. The Rec. adds . [This clause is given in B*., Vulg., Cop., Syr.; but is omitted in . A. P., et al.E. R. C.]

[16]Rev 22:1. is unauthorized. [It does not appear in . A. B*. P., Vulg., Cop., Syr., th.E. R. C.]

[17]Rev 22:2. . [Crit. Eds. read with A. B*., et al.E. R. C.]

[18]Rev 22:3. ; comp. Delitzsch, p. 51. [Crit. Eds. so read with c. A. B*. P.E. R. C.]

[19]Rev 22:3. [Crit. Eds. give the reading with . A. P.E. R. C.]

[20]Rev 22:5. is unfounded.

[21]Rev 22:5. is supported by . A., et al.; Tischendorf [1859] omits with B*. [but gives it in the 8th Ed. with . A. P.E. R. C.]

[22]Rev 22:5. Tischendorf [1859], with B*., gives , etc. which differs from the readings of Lachmann and the Rec. [Lach. and Alf. read with A., Vulg.; Tisch (8th Ed.) and Treg. give with ., Memph., Syr.; P. also gives .E. R. C.]

[23]Rev 22:5. [Lach., Alf., Treg., Tisch. (8th Ed.) give with . A., Vulg., et al.; Tisch. (1859) omitted with B.* P.E. R. C.]

[24]Rev 22:5. We give the reading [] . [So read Alf., Treg., Tisch. (8th Ed.); with . B.*; with . A. Lach. gives with A. P. is omitted by B*. P.E. R. C.]

[25][See additional comment on Rev 21:22, p. 387.E. R. C.]

[26][See additional comment on Rev 22:3, p. 388.E. R. C.]

[27][See additional comment on Rev 21:22, p. 387.E. R. C.]

[28][In Job, l. c., the G.V. reads: Ramoth and Gabis are not thought of. Wisdom is of higher value than pearls. In the two passages in Proverbs above cited, the word which the E. V. renders rubies, is, in the G. V., translated pearls.Tr.]

[29][The cui bono argument, if injudiciously pressed, might lead to the conclusion that there are no Angels at all. Angels are described as ministering spirits sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation. But, it may be asked, what is the use of them under the government of an infinite God? Are they aught else than symbols of the watchful guardianship which God exercises over His children? Angels may be unnecessary as watchmen and guards at the gates of the heavenly Jerusalem, and some may object to them as ornaments; and yet veritable Angels ministering at the gates of that glorious abode would add to its glory, and might perform other offices that in our present condition it is impossible for us to conceive.E. R. C.]

[30][De Wette interprets the , ver 16, in reference to the height,viz.: of the wall, as he falsely assumesas uniform, because the wall is everywhere 144, i.e. 12 12, cubits high. Altered from Duesterdieck.Tr.]

[31][The G. V. reads here: und wird kein Bann mehr sein (and there shall be no more ban).Tr.]

[32][In order to the understanding of this point, the writer would refer the reader to his Preliminary Note on the Symbolism of the Vision, pp. 145 sqq.E. R. C.]

[33][As an Immediate Symbol, the simulacrum of the New Jerusalem was probably to a large extent ideal. This, doubtless, was the case in the simulacra of Angels. We can hardly suppose that the simulacrum beheld by John was in all respects similar to the City that, is to be, and yet it may have been so to a greater extent than we are now prepared to admit. It should here be distinctly noted, what was set forth with great care in the Note on Symbolism, that there is a great difference between an Immediate ideal and a Mediate Symbol. The former always represents something similar in (apparent) kind to the simulacrum, although with differences as to particulars; the latter always represents something different in (apparent) kind, as the simulacrum of a lamb to represent Christ, and that of a City to symbolize a Church or people.E. R. C.]

[34][The writer expresses no decided opinion as to whether the Bride, the subjects of the First Resurrection, shall consist of the martyrs; or the whole body of the redeemed or a select portion, including the martyrsthe (see p. 193). He inclines, however, to the last mentioned view.E. R. C.]

[35][The hymnology connected with the New Jerusalem is exceedingly rich. A small work enti led O Mother dear, Jerusalem, by William C. Prime (A. D. F. Randolph, Now York, 1865) gives the entire Poem so named; its history, several of its versions, and also several of the ancient hymns, in Latin and English, whence its sentiments, and in many instances its language, were drawn. To these hymns, embodying as they do the opinions of many of the painted fathers of the Church, and sung in every land, is due, more than to aught else, the prevalent interpretation of the Apocalyptic description. The original English form of the hymn as it exists in a small volume of poetry, professedly of the age of Queen Elizabeth, in the British Museum, was some years ago published by Dr. Bonar. Modernized by Barnes as to its spelling, it is as follows:

[36]Rev 22:6. We give the reading . ., in accordance with . A. B*. [P., Vulg. except Am.,] et al.

[37]Rev 22:7. , in accordance with A. B*. [. Vulg., Syr., th.]

[38]Rev 22:8. [Gb., Sz., Lach., Tisch. (1859), Alf., Treg., give with A. B*. Vulg., Syr., Arm., et al.; Tisch. (8th Ed.) reverses the order with .E. R. C.]

[39]Rev 22:8. B*. gives . [So Tisch. (1859).] There are several unimportant variations here. [Lach., Tisch. (8th Ed.), Alf., Treg., read with .E. R. C.]

[40]Rev 22:10. . A. B*. Lachmann [Alf., Treg., Tisch.], insert after .

[41]Rev 22:11. We give the reading . [So Crit. Eds. with . B*.E. R. C.]

[42]Rev 22:11. , in acc. with . A. B*.,an important reading as contrasted with .

[43]Rev 22:12. The before is unauthorized.

[44]Rev 22:12. . A. et al. give the reading .

[45]Rev 22:13. The sequence of the Rec., which places . etc., first, is unauthorized.

[46]Rev 22:14. An important variation occurs here. The reading of . A. [7, 38, Vulg., Arm. mg., th.], et al., is ; that of B*. et al., . Lachmann and Tischendorf give the former. Dsterdieck, with De Wette, prefers the latter reading, because he thinks that it may have been rejected in order to avoid the interruption to Jesus discourse. The context also is, therefore, in favor of No. 1.

[47]Rev 22:15. [Crit. Eds. omit the copula with . A. B.* Vulg., et al.E. R. C.]

[48]Rev 22:16. We give the very weighty reading, ., in accordance with . B.* [So Alf., Treg., Tisch.; Lach. gives with A., Vulg., et al. E. R. C.]

[49]Rev 22:17. [Crit. Eds. give twice and with . A. B*, et al.E. R. C.]

[50]Rev 22:17. Omit before .

[51]Rev 22:17. [Crit. Eds. give with . A. B*.E. R. C.]

[52]Rev 22:18. [Crit, Eds. omit the copula with . A. B*.E. R. C.]

[53]Rev 22:19. [Crit. Eds. read with . A. B*., et al.E. R. C.]

[54]Rev 22:20. A. B*., et al. omit [and also of the Rec.] before .

[55]Rev 22:21. Codd. A. B*. [.] give without .

[56]Rev 22:21. Codd. A. [.] give alone; B*. gives . [Lach., Tisch., Alf., Treg., give alone.E. R. C.]

[57]Rev 22:21. is supported by minuscules.

[58]Rev 22:21. [Lach. and Tisch. read with A., Am.; Alf. and Treg. with ., Gb., Sz.; and Lange, with B*., Cop., Syr., Arm., et al.E. R. C.]

[59]Rev 22:21. [Lange reads with . B*., Vulg., Cop., Syr., Arm., th., et al.; Lach., Tisch., Treg., and Alf., omit with A. Alf. gives the subscription with . A.E. R. C.]

[60] See Schiller, Die Jungfrau von Orleans, Acts 4., Scene 9.:

Die Fahne liess ich in dem Heiligthum,

Nie, nie soll diese Hand sie mehr berhren!
Mir wars als hatt die geliebten Schwestern
,

Margot und Louison, gleich einem Traum
An mir vorbergleiten sehen. Ach
,

Es war nur eine tuschende Erscheinung.

Fuente: A Commentary on the Holy Scriptures, Critical, Doctrinal, and Homiletical by Lange

SPECIAL DOCTRINO-ETHICAL AND HOMILETICAL NOTES (ADDENDUM)

Section Twenty-Second

The Epilogue. (Rev 22:6-21)

General.The Johannean character of the Epilogue of the Revelation has already been dwelt upon. A depth of meaning and a festalness of mood, conjoined with a somewhat indefinite expression, or a mysterious form, are peculiar to this section as well as to the Epilogue of the Gospel; and the fundamental thought which animates them both is an earnest longing for the Coming of the Lord. In regard to the construction, comp. the Exeg. Notes.

Special.The pureness of the Revelation (Rev 22:6) corroborated by its Author. By its intimate connection with the whole of Holy Writ. By its fulfillment hitherto.(Rev 22:7.) Behold, I come quickly. 1. How this saying is misunderstood when it is interpreted in the sense of a secular computation of time. 2. How, for the standpoint of religious sentiment and Christian expectations, it always retains its truth, and, 3. continually gains in weight.Blessed is he that keepeth the words of the prophecy.

Rev 22:8-9. What is the significance of the distinction between the Angel of Christ and Christ Himself (see Exeg. Notes)?[Rev 22:10.] Seal not the words of the prophecy of this Book. Why not? The time is at hand.Earnest and grand character of the course of the world to its end.Seal not the Book; not even by false interpretationsespecially, chiliastic darkenings and rationalistic volatilizings.Seal not even the Apocalypse with hierarchic seals, much less then the whole of the Bible.

Rev 22:11. Lofty import of these words: What thou doest (wilt do), do quickly! (See Exeg. Notes.)Christs word concerning His Coming (Rev 22:12). He announces Himself as the righteous Recompenser.His reward according to mens works: 1. The reward not as the wages of hired service, but an honorarium of love; 2. Not for works of hired service, but for those of the service of love.Christ as the Alpha and Omega. Some say: Omega, but not Alpha. Others: Alpha, but not Omega. Whoso, however, rightly says the one, says also the other.Antithesis of blessedness and damnation (Rev 22:14-15).Withoutits import (Rev 22:15).Who is without? Note the pure and purely moral character of these traits.Christs testimony regarding His Coming: A testimony to the Church (Rev 22:16).Christ in His human and Divine glory (I am the Root, etc.).How His human and Divine glory guarantees His Coming.[Rev 22:17.] The three-fold Comeof the Spirit, the Bride, the individual Christian.He who would greet the Lord with a come! must first hearken to the Lords call: Come!Our Welcome to the Advent of Christ must be based upon His Welcome to the reception of salvation.The clear sound of the Gospel may still be heard at the very close of the Revelation. Here, also, the declaration is: Take freely.[Rev 22:18.] The Apostles warning in regard to the Apocalypse: It is no subject for haughty-cavil, but an enigma for humble meditation.The mysteries and enigmas of Scripture concluded with a final enigma.Whoso occupies a wrong position in regard to the future, occupies also a wrong position in regard to the present and the past.[Rev 22:20.] Briefest and most sublime dialogue between the Lord and His people. 1. He says: I come quickly 2. We say: Amen, yea, come, Lord Jesus.Who can, with a good courage, say Amen to the announcement of His Coming?The sum of all human longing, all Christian hope, all Divine promise, in the cry: Come, Lord Jesus!The Apocalypse, a Book of faith; of love; of hope; of longing, of patience; of comfort; of investigation; of knowledge. Of sacred awe, of blessed vision.

Rev 22:21. The benediction. Benedictions from the beginning to the end of the Scriptures: In respect (1) of their purport; (2) of their rich development; (3) of their conditionedness; (4) of their glorious operation.

Starke (Rev 22:10): No man should be prohibited from reading the Holy Scriptures.

Rev 22:11. If the wicked wilfully refuse to follow, God at last suffers them to go their own way (Pro 1:24 sqq.).

Rev 22:12. Comp. Isa 40:10.

Rev 22:17. Because many souls should yet be drawn to Christamong other things, by the testimonies of this Book concerning the glorious Coming of ChristJohn adds these words: let him that heareth, say, Come.

Rev 22:19. O awful punishment of those who falsify Gods word! There is nothing more precious [than the word of God]hence it needs no addition of worldly eloquence, there is nothing more purehence we must take nothing from it.

Rev 22:20. Let us say Amen and Yea to the promises of our Saviour, although as yet we see nothing (?) of their fulfillment.

Calwer Handbuch der Bibelerklrang. [Rev 22:10.] Although much in the Revelation was not intended to be understood until the times of fulfillment, yet this Book is not a shut (sealed) Book, but a Revelation [Offenbarung].

Lisko (Bibelwerk): [Rev 22:16.] He [Christ] is also the bright morning-star, Who caused the day, the whole period of Divine life in mankind, to arise, and issue forth from Himself, and Who now beams upon us from the other world (as the morning-star of the Day of Eternity).

Gerlach (Bibelwerk): Rev 22:17. To inflame the longing of the faithful for the return of their Saviour, is one of the principal designs of this Book.

[From M. Henry: Rev 22:20. Christ will come quickly; let this word be always sounding in our ear, and let us give all diligence, that we may be found of Him in peace, without spot, and blameless.Surely I come quickly.Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus. What comes from heaven in a promise, should be sent back to heaven in a prayer.

Rev 22:21. Nothing should be more desired by us than that the grace of Christ should be with us in this world, to prepare us for the glory of Christ in the other world.From The Comprehensive Commentary: Rev 22:16. The bright and morning star. Christs rising, in His incarnation, introduced the gospel-day; His rising in power introduceth the millennial day; His rising in the saving influences of His Spirit introduceth the spiritual day of grace and comfort; and His appearance to judge the world will introduce the eternal day of light, purity and joy. (Brown.)The Spirit, by the sacred Word, and by His convictions and influence in the sinners conscience, says Come to Christ for salvation; the Bride, or the whole Church militant and triumphant, says Come, and share our felicity. It therefore behooves every man who hears the invitation to call on others to come. (Scott.)From Barnes: Rev 22:11 : There is nothing more awful than the idea that a polluted soul will be always polluted; that a heart corrupt will be always corrupt; that the defiled will be put forever beyond the possibility of being cleansed from sin.

Rev 22:16. The bright and morning star. (Let that star) remind us that the Saviour should be the first object that should draw the eye and the heart on the return of each day.

Rev 22:17. And let him that is athirst, come. Whoever desires salvation, as the weary pilgrim desires a cooling fountain to allay his thirst, let him come as freely to the gospel as that thirsty man would stoop down at the fountain and drink.From Vaughan: Rev 22:7. A special blessing is pronounced by our Lord Jesus Christ upon those who prize, and keep as a precious and sacred deposit, this particular portion of His revealed truth.

Rev 22:11. There will come a time to each one of us, when, whatever we are, that we shall be; when the seal of permanence will be set upon the spiritual condition; when the unjust man shall be unjust forever, and the righteous man shall be forever righteous.

Rev 22:12. To give back to each one as his work is. That is the judgment. It is the reaping of the thing sown. It is the receiving back the things themselves that were once done in the body (2Co 5:10); receiving back the very acts and deeds themselves, only developed, full-grown, full-blown, ripened unto harvest.From Bonar: Rev 22:14. Blessed are they that keep His commandments. It is to a life of such keeping that we are called. By such a life, we partake of blessedness as well as glorify God.Enter in through the gates into the city. (Enter) not over the wall; not by stealth; but as conquerors in triumphal procession, their Lord, as King of glory, at their head.

Rev 22:17. Note here, 1. The cry for Christs advent. 2. The invitation to the sinner. Observe (1) The inviter; Christ Himself. He invited once on earth; He now invites from heaven with the same urgency and love. (2) The persons invited; a. The thirsty. They who would fain be happy, but know not how; who are seeking rest, but finding none; who are hewing out broken cisterns; betaking themselves to dried-up wells. b. Whosoever will. A wide description. It shuts out none. (3) The blessings invited to; The water of life. Water, that which will thoroughly refresh you and quench your thirst; water of life, living and life-giving. This water is the Holy Ghost Himself, Who comes to us as the bringer of Gods free love, with all the joy which that love introduces into the soul. (4) The price. Freely. Free to each one as he is; though the chief of sinners, the emptiest, wickedest, thirstiest of the sons of men.

Rev 22:18-19. Note here, 1. The perfection of Gods word. 2. The honor God puts on it. 3. Our responsibilities in regard to it. 4. The sin and clanger of tampering with it.]

Fuente: A Commentary on the Holy Scriptures, Critical, Doctrinal, and Homiletical by Lange

(6) And he said unto me, These sayings are faithful and true: and the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angel to shew unto his servants the things which must shortly be done. (7) Behold, I come quickly: blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book. (8) And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which shewed me these things. (9) Then saith he unto me, See thou do it not: for I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: worship God.

I beg the Reader to be very particular in observing, the different speakers. Here, we have the Person, from whom John was now receiving intelligence, concerning the Church, in her happy state, declaring that what he had delivered, were faithful, and true sayings. And he saith, as plain as words can make anything, that the Lord God of the holy Prophets, that is, Christ Jesus, had sent his angel, meaning himself, to show these things unto his servant John. But you will say, how is this proved? I answer. In the opening of this book, (and the opening, from beginning to end, is like a letter, but one thing,) the very first verse, like the direction to a letter, runs thus: The Revelation of Jesus Christ – mark that! – which God gave to him to shew unto his servants (meaning the Church) things which must shortly come to pass. Now mark And he sent and signified it, by his Angel, unto his servant John. Now, if ever anything of plain, common sense, is to be found, it is here. God the Father gave to his dear Son a revelation, to come forth, and communicate. This Jesus hath done. And he sent, and signified it, by a messenger, or angel, to John. So then, this messenger, this angel, was the person, which this Lord God of the holy Prophets, Jesus Christ, sent to inform John. And John was so much struck with the account, that in the moment of the exstacy of his mind, he would have worshipped the angel. But the angel suffered him not. And he gave this reason. I am thy fellow servant; that is a fellow servant of God, and of the Lord God of the Prophets, Jesus Christ: worship him!

But perhaps it will he said by some, is there not some little difficulty in this sense, in respect to the words in the seventh verse, behold I come quickly! blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book. To which I answer, No! Nay, so far from it, they are rather a confirmation. The Angel reminds John of what had passed at the opening of the interview, between Jesus and John, as related in the first Chapter (Rev 1:1-3 ), Jesus had before said, behold I come quickly, Rev 3:11 . Therefore, the Angel repeats those words, to remind John of what Christ had said. And also to remind him, of what John had himself said, concerning blessedness, to those who kept the sayings of the prophecy of this book. Rev 1:3 . Hence, therefore, it is as plain as words can make it, that this Angel now conversing with John, was a fellow servant with John and not Christ and therefore, he could be no object of worship.

Fuente: Hawker’s Poor Man’s Commentary (Old and New Testaments)

XXIII

EPILOGUE

Rev 22:6-21

The exposition of this marvelous and delightful book closes with this chapter. As the first chapter is the prologue of the book, this study of Rev 22:6-21 is the epilogue of the book. Most of the terms of the first chapter are here repeated to show that the purpose of the revelation there announced is here consummated. No other Bible book has more striking marks of unity. The first sentence: “These words are faithful and true,” authenticates the whole book. The second sentence connects it in unity and authority with all the preceding books of the sacred history. That sentence: “The Lord, the God of the spirits of the prophets, sent his angel to show unto his servants the things which must shortly come to pass,” means that the Lord who bestowed upon each of the Old Testament prophets, and on each of the preceding New Testament prophets, that measure of the gift of the Holy Spirit to qualify him to write his part of the sacred canon, inspired this closing book also, making it the capstone and the climax of all revelation. It follows that the whole library has one author, all the parts are correlated into one complete system of revelation. In every case, from Moses to John, “The testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.” Paul had said collectively of the Old Testament Scriptures: “They are the sacred scriptures,” distinguishing them from all secular and profane writings; and then said of them distributively, pasgraphe theopneustos , “every one of the writings is God-inspired.”

This second sentence of our study not only virtually affirms the same thing of the New Testament books, but links both Testaments into one inspired unity.

Read the next two verses: “And I, John, am he who heard and saw these things, and when I heard and saw, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel that showed me these things. And he saith unto me, See thou do it not: I am a fellow servant with thee and with thy brethren the prophets, and with them that keep the words of this book: worship God.”

Here are two great lessons: First, that angels are not to be adored: Worship God. So Paul wrote to the Colossians: “Let no man rob you of your prize by a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels . . . which had indeed a show of will worship.” That kind of worship, which the human will has devised, has cursed all Christendom as well as heathendom, worshiping the creature rather than the Creator. Huge ecclesiasticisms, particularly the Romanist and Greek churches, claiming to be the highest expressions of Christianity, are in the main elaborate systems of idolatry, angelolatry, Mariolatry, adoration of the mass, the images, saints, relics, and a thousand other superstitions.

The second lesson: Not only do the words of the angel show a fraternity of Old and New Testament prophets, but a fellowservice of both with the angels: “I am a fellow servant with thee and with the prophets, and with those who keep the words of this book.” You see that sentence blends into one great family of God the saints of all ages and the angels who have been the ministering spirits to the heirs of salvation.

Read the next verse: “He saith unto me: Seal not up the words of the prophecy of this book; for the time is at hand.” Here, again, we gather two important lessons. First, while more than once in this book we have seen the temporary sealing up, or suppression of the outcome of the synchronous views until the crowning climax of all of them arrives (see Rev 8:1 ; Rev 10:4 ), and yet at the end, the whole book is opened forever; no man can ever seal up any part of this book. It is a revelation; it is meant to be understood. A benediction is pronounced on the hearer, the reader, and the keeper of the words of the book, but if we do not understand the book, we cannot keep its words.

The second lesson: In one respect there is a sharp contrast between the prophecies of the two dispensations. For example, the book of Daniel, which is the great prototype of this book. To Daniel, at the close of his apocalypse, greatly troubled because he did not understand his own visions, God said (and you will notice the contrast): “But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro and knowledge shall be increased. . . . And I heard but I understood not; then said I: O my Lord, what shall be the issue of these things? And he said: Go thy way, Daniel, for the words are shut up and sealed till the time of the end. Many shall purify and make themselves white, and be refined, but the wicked shall do wickedly, and none of the wicked shall understand, but they that are wise shall understand. . . . But go thou thy way till the end be; for thou shalt rest and stand in thy lot, at the end of the days.”

Daniel is commanded to seal up his book; our verse says: “Seal not up the words of this prophecy.” Speaking concerning all the Old Testament prophecies, and also concerning the angels, Peter uses this language: “Concerning which salvation the prophets searched and sought diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you; searching what time, or what manner of time the spirit of Christ which was in them did point to, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glories that should follow them. To whom it was revealed that not unto themselves, but unto you did they minister these things, which now have been announced unto you through them that preached the gospel unto you by the Holy Spirit sent forth from heaven. Which things angels desire to look into.” It is the church, in her victories, that instructs the angels in the manifold wisdom of God. As Paul says to the Ephesians: “The manifold wisdom of God shall be made known to principalities and powers in heavenly places by the church.” The old dispensation, clouded in type and shadow, left many things sealed up. The New Testament sweeps all the mists away.

Read now two other verges of the lesson: “He that is unrighteous, let him do unrighteousness still; and he that is filthy, let him be made filthy still; and he that is righteous let him do righteousness still; and he that is holy let him be made holy still. Behold, I come quickly, and my reward is with me, to render to each man according as his work is.” Your author does not understand Rev 22:11 to refer to the fixity of the final state after the judgment, to wit: that one then righteous will be righteous forever. That is true, but it is not taught here. This epilogue is not now considering the results of the judgment and the future state; they have been disposed of in another connection; this epilogue is not a vision, it is not a part of the apocalypse. It simply tells of the application of all the lessons of the book to the present. A similar mode of expression appears in Eze 12:11 and Dan 12:10 . The meaning is that, having now unveiled the future with it in reward and punishment, the choice is left to man to be righteous or unrighteous, holy or filthy; God will not coerce. Just so, some of the exiles would not hear Ezekiel, and some who heard him would not practice what he preached. He said: “I am to you merely as the sound of a pleasant instrument; you sit before me just as if you were the people of the Lord, but you go out after hearing me and continue to do your abominations.”

It reminds me of the romantic legend of St. Anthony, who, having no people to preach to, went and preached to the fishes, and the record states that they were much edified. But the eels went on eeling, and the stock fish went on stealing, each one living in the same old way.

Notwithstanding Daniel’s visions, the wicked, as God said to him, would continue to do wickedly. And so, notwithstanding this book of Revelation, those who love unholiness will be allowed to follow their bent, and those who prefer being filthy will go on being made filthy. He is permitted to follow his choice, but is warned that whatever each man chooses in time will be his destiny in eternity, as the last clause of the verse tells us: “Behold, I come quickly, and my reward is with me, to render to every man according to his works.”

Read Rev 22:14-15 : “Blessed are they that wash their robes that they may have the right to come to the tree of life and may enter in by the gates of the city. Without are the dogs, and the sorcerers, and the idolaters, and the fornicators, and the murderers, and every one that loveth and maketh a lie.” The reader will note the difference in the text of Rev 22:14 between the Common Version and the Revised, from which I quote. The King James Version reads this way: “Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life,” and this version reads: “Blessed are they that have washed their robes, that they may have the right to the tree of life.” That makes a marked difference in doctrine. The King James translators had not before them any one of the three oldest manuscripts of the New Testament: the Alexandrian manuscript, now in the British Museum, was presented to Charles I, son of James. The Sinaitic manuscript was discovered long after that translation by Tischendorf, and it is now in the museum at St. Petersburg. The Vatican manuscript is in the Vatican Library at Rome. All these oldest and best manuscripts read: “Blessed are they that have washed their robes, that they may have the right to the tree of life.” I have facsimiles of all these oldest manuscripts in my library. You may accept it without question that in the best texts the reading is “Blessed are they who have washed their robes.” This harmonizes expressly with the parallel passage in Rev 7:9-14 , where those arrayed in white robes are declared to be those who have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the lamb, and harmonizes with the vital and fundamental truth that the blood of Christ cleanses from all sin. The right to the tree of life comes by blood, not by works; by faith, not by doing. The thought of the passage follows strictly the preceding one. God will not coerce; the choice is with men; if they by faith will accept the Saviour and are cleansed in his blood, they have a right to the tree of life, and to enter into the Holy City, the New Jerusalem. But if they prefer to be dogs, sorcerers, fornicators, murderers, idolaters, and liars, then their destiny is on the outside.

Read Rev 22:16 : “I, Jesus, have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things for the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, the bright, the morning star.” How often have I told you, since we commenced this book, that the God appointed agency for lighting the world is the churches. The whole of this book, as a sacred deposit of revealed truth, is given to the churches. That is why the church is said to be the “pillar and ground of the truth.”

Here, again, the connection is close: This book of Revelation is from the Lord. He sent his testimony by his angel. The message is fully authenticated; it is a message for the churches. They receive the deposit of truth for communication of all the world.

Read Rev 22:17 : “And the Spirit and the bride say, Come; and he that heareth, let him say, Come; and he that is athirst, let him come; and he that will, let him take of the water of life freely.” The revelation of the way of life completed, and the revelation of destiny at the judgment, and this revelation as a sacred deposit having been given to the churches, what shall they do with it? What are their duties in view of the fact that they are the custodians of the truth? Rev 22:17 , which I have just read, answers that question.

But what does it mean? You are invited to come) and to come to what? The premillennialists insist that all the “comes” in this book refer to, or are spoken to, Jesus: “Come, Lord Jesus.” I pointed out their error where the four Cherubim say, “Come,” “Come,” “Come,” “Come.” They are speaking not to the Lord Jesus, but are speaking to those horses that appear at their command to come, and I now say to you that the Spirit does not say to Jesus, “Come,” nor does the bride or the church, in this connection at least, say to Jesus, “Come”; and the one that hears does not say to Jesus, “Come.” The rest of the verse will not make sense with such interpretation: “Let him that is athirst come, and such as will, let him partake of the water of life freely.” To put that premillennial interpretation on the passage destroys the meaning of the greatest text in the Bible.

The revelation of the way of life and the judgment and eternal destiny being made clear and complete and authenticated, and that way of life shown to be by grace, through faith, in the cleansing of the blood of Christ; and the choice of the decision being left to man, and the complete revelation being deposited with the churches, we come to our verse: The Holy Spirit, Christ’s vicar on earth, abiding in the church till the judgment day, in order to complete the cleansing by blood, says to all men, “Come.” As if pointing to that picture of heaven, described in the last chapter, with the throne of God, with the water of life bubbling from under that throne and outflowing through the city, the Holy Spirit says to every sinner, to every lost man in the world: “Come to this water of life.” What the Spirit says the church says: the Spirit and the church united give the invitation, and the Spirit gives the power to the invitation: “Come to the water of life.” Not only is that an official invitation, but any man that hears the Spirit or the church give that invitation is authorized to repeat it. As you hear, you may turn at once to your nearest neighbor, your dearest friend, the members of your family, and say, “Come.” Not only that, but whether you hear the Spirit or the church consciously, if you are athirst, if there be a craving in your soul, that very thirst in you is your authority to come. As Jesus said: “Whosoever that drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst.”

What a glorious thing it is that there is so little red tape in the invitation of the gospel. You may be by yourself, you may not be in reach of any church; you may just have a longing in your soul for salvation: then come. Don’t wait for anybody or anything. The thought even goes a step beyond. You may not even have that thirst, your only conviction may be that you cannot feel, yet if you are willing to come: “Whosoever will, let him come,” without money and without price. How it falls into line with all Bible invitations; particularly with Isa 55 . That chapter was my mother’s favorite. When I was a little bit of a fellow wearing dresses, I had to kneel down before her and repeat:

Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters; and he that hath no money, come ye, buy and eat; yea, come, buy wine and milk without money and without price. Wherefore do ye spend money for that which is not bread? And your labour for that which satisfieth not? Hearken diligently unto me, and eat ye that which is good, and let your soul delight itself in fatness. Incline your ear and come unto me; hear, and your soul shall live: And I will make an everlasting covenant with you, even the sure mercies of David. . . . Seek ye Jehovah while he may be found; call ye upon him while he is near; let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; and let him return unto Jehovah and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. Isa 4:1-3 ; Isa 4:6 .

Mark the glorious results: “For ye shall go out with joy and be led forth with peace; the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing; and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands. Instead of the thorn shall come up the fir tree, and instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle tree; and it shall be to Jehovah for a name, for an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.” That is to say, in the joy of your heart you interpret differently all external nature, the sunlight is sweeter, the trees are more beautiful, the earth takes on a new dignity and nature, and you see everything through the rose colour of your faith.

I say, then, that while the choice is left to each man to be righteous or unrighteous, no choice is left to the church or to the Christian: you must invite. If he die, his blood must not be on you; you must say to him, “Come.”

Read Rev 22:18 : “I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, if any man shall add unto them, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book; and if any man shall take away from the words of this prophecy, God shall take away his part of the tree of life and out of the Holy City which are written in this book.” What a tremendous sentence! And in view of it, hear the ex-president of Harvard University say: “We need a new religion.” He wants to add to what this book says. Hear the former professor of theology in the Divinity School of the University of Chicago say only a little part of the Christian religion will be final; you remember his book, The Finality of the Christian Religion, which goes on whittling away on God’s revelation until what is left, in his estimation, would rest without falling off on the point of a cambric needle. And they promoted him from a chair in the Divinity School to the University Chair of Comparative Religions. At which I wondered in this fashion: Since even he admits that the Christian religion is the best of all extant religions, but since only an infinitesimal part of that will abide, why waste money to pay a man to institute comparisons between them?

I, for one, think that Rev 22:18-19 are not exclusively limited to the book of Revelation. For, if I have correctly interpreted the foregoing passages, showing that this book is bound up with all the other prophecies into one unity, and as in this book Christ’s prophetic office is closed henceforth, so then there will never be another revelation, nor need for another, and as this book is the climax revealing paradise regained to meet the paradise lost of Genesis, then the warning applies to all the inseparable library. Since this book makes known the way of life to the lost, since the only way to the tree of life and the holy New Jerusalem of God and the blessed society that is described in the preceding chapter, since through the blood of Jesus Christ is the only way to obtain the right to enter, how heinous must be the offense of taking away a part of this book, or adding a part!

There has always been in the sinner’s heart a prurient desire to find some way to the secrets of the hereafter, and hence they have resorted to magic and sorcery, fortune telling, soothsaying, necromancy, and ten thousand other ways. Even in hell the rich man had that desire: “Father Abraham, send Lazarus back to yonder world to tell my brothers not to come here.” Abraham said: “They have Moses and the prophets; they have the light.” He said: “No, Father Abraham, if one would go unto them from the dead they will repent.” Abraham said: “If they would not repent under Moses and the prophets, they would not repent under one that came from the dead.” Whoever is not willing to be saved by this revelation, a stored up, a precious treasure of life, deposited with the churches, then how can he be saved? That is why I told you, and probably shocked some of you by saying, that whoever is not saved through the shining of the candlesticks and stars, through the ministry of the light of the churches and the preachers, cannot be saved. Therefore no man can be saved after Christ comes; all of the saving light is deposited with the churches. That is why I prefer to take my conception of the churches from Jesus Christ rather than from man’s idea of what is the church. He established the church as an institution; he calls the concrete expression of the institution, “the churches”: He says, “These are the candlesticks and the stars that are to illumine the world.” I count being a church member a very great honor. Others prefer to run over the range as mavericks Texas cattlemen know what that means wild stock with no brand or mark on them. And there are quite a lot of preachers who prefer to be “free lances,” independent of the churches. Paul says that Jesus set the apostles, prophets, evangelists, and teachers in the church: that is where he put them; they are not turned out loose in the world like wandering stars: they must have anchorage; they must hail from some port and must be going to some port.

QUESTIONS

1. What part of this book the prologue, and what part the epilogue?

2. In what words is the whole book authenticated?

3. In what words is it connected in unity and authority with all pre ceding books of the sacred library?

4. What the meaning of “The Lord, the God of Spirits, sent his angel to show unto his servants the things” of this book?

5. What follows from this meaning?

6. How does Paul speak of the Old Testament book, first collectively, then distributively?

7. What the two great lessons from Rev 22:8-9 ?

8. What the two lessons from Rev 22:10 ?

9. What the meaning of Rev 22:11 , negatively and positively?

10. Wherein does the rendering of the Common Version of Rev 22:14 differ from the Revision, and why?

11. Expound Rev 22:17 .

12. Why may you not restrict the words of Rev 22:18-19 to this book alone?

Fuente: B.H. Carroll’s An Interpretation of the English Bible

6 And he said unto me, These sayings are faithful and true: and the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angel to shew unto his servants the things which must shortly be done.

Ver. 6. And he said unto me ] This is the conclusion of the whole prophecy; and it is very august and majestical.

These sayings are faithful and true ] Thus (among other evidences of its divinity) the Scripture testifies of itself; and we know that its testimony is true. Vapiscus saith of the ancient historians that there is none of them that hath not told many lies. Tertullian saith of Tacitus, that he was mendaciorum loquacissimus, a very loud and lewd liar. Baronius doth not compose annals, but coin them, saith one. But none of all this can be said of God’s word of truth, void of all insincerity or falsehood.

The Lord God of the holy prophets ] Some copies have it, The Lord God of the spirits of the prophets. He is the God of the spirits of all flesh, but of the spirits of prophets in a special manner; for those holy men spake no otherwise than as they were acted or imbreathed by the Holy Ghost,2Pe 1:212Pe 1:21 . See Trapp on “ 2Pe 1:21

Sent his angel ] As Rev 1:1 . The authority therefore of this book is unquestionable, whatever some have surmised from Rev 20:4 , that it was the work of Cerinthus or some other millenary.

Fuente: John Trapp’s Complete Commentary (Old and New Testaments)

6 21.] CONCLUDING ASSURANCES AND EXHORTATIONS : and herein, 6, 7, assurance by the angel of the truth of what has been said , in the terms of ch. Rev 1:1 . And he (the angel) said to me, These sayings (the whole book, by what follows) are faithful and true (see on reff.): and the Lord (Jehovah) the God of the spirits of the prophets (i. e. of those spirits of theirs, which, informed by the Holy Spirit, have become the vehicles of prophecy) sent His angel to shew to His servants what things must come to pass shortly (on the whole of this see on ch. Rev 1:1 , from which place it is repeated at the close of the book of which that is the opening). And behold, I come quickly (the speech passes into the words of Christ Himself, reported by the angel: so in Rev 22:12 , and in ch. Rev 11:3 ): Blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book (the speech is a mixed one: in , the Writer has in view the roll of his book now lying all but completed before him: but the words are the saying of the angel: would express it formally). And I John (was he) who heard and saw these things (pres. participles without temporal significance was the hearer and seer of these things): and when I heard and saw, I fell down (as in ch. Rev 19:10 , where see notes) to worship before the feet of the angel who shewed me (pres. part. as above) these things. And he saith to me, Take heed not: I am a fellow-servant of thine, and (a fellow-servant) of thy brethren the prophets, and of those who keep the sayings of this book: worship God (the same feeling again prevailed over the Apostle as before, and is met with a similar rebuke. I hardly can with Dsterd. see any real distinction implied, in the here, between the situation of the Seer then and now. D. thinks, the intention now is to exalt his prophetic office and character). And he saith to me, Seal not up the sayings of the prophecy of this book (cf. ch. Rev 10:4 , where the command is otherwise: also reff. Daniel): for the time is near (in Dan 8:26 , the reason for sealing up the vision is that the time shall be for many days ). Let him that is unjust (pres. part. as above) commit injustice (aor. of acts, not of a state, which would be pres.) still: and let the filthy (reff.: morally polluted) pollute himself (in the constant middle sense of passive verbs when the act depends on a man’s self) still: and let the righteous do righteousness still, and the holy sanctify himself still (see Eze 3:27 ; and cf. Mat 26:45 , “Sleep on now, and take your rest: behold, the hour is at hand:” also Eze 20:39 . The saying has solemn irony in it: the time is so short, that there is hardly room for change the lesson conveyed in its depth is, “Change while there is time”). Behold I come quickly, and my reward is with me (reff. Isa.) to render (this infin. may be either of purpose, dependent jointly on and . . . ., or epexegetic of that which is wrapped up in the word itself. No very satisfactory account is given of this last construction in Winer, edn. 6, 44. 1) to each as his work is (these words sound as if spoken by our Lord Himself: perhaps at the conclusion, the Apostle puts together, in prophetic shortness, many divine sayings of warning and consolation, with the replies to them). I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end (these words have hitherto been said by the Father: see above, ch. Rev 1:8 , Rev 21:6 , and notes. And in all probability it is so here likewise, whether we assume the words to be spoken by Christ in God’s name, or by the Eternal Father Himself). Blessed are they that wash their robes (see the digest. The vulg. addition “in sanguine agni,” after ch. Rev 7:14 , is of course the right supplement), that they may (on with fut. see reff. and ch. Rev 14:13 note. It is a mixed construction: between “that they may have” and “for they shall have”) have the power (licence) over the tree (to eat of the tree: of the direction of their reaching for the fruit) of life, and may enter by the gates into the city. Outside are the dogs (impure persons, reff.), and the sorcerers, and the fornicators, and the murderers, and the idolaters, and every one loving and practising falsehood (see on these, ch. Rev 21:8 ).

I Jesus (our Lord now speaks directly in His own person) sent my angel to testify these things to you in (the of addition by juxtaposition, see reff.) the churches. I am the root (reff.) and the race (the offspring , as E. V. So Virg. n. iv. 12, “genus esse Deorum”) of David, the bright morning-star (that brings in the everlasting day).

And the Spirit (in the churches, and in the prophets) and the Bride (the Church herself) say Come (see on ch. Rev 6:1 , &c.): and let him that heareth (the cry of the Spirit and Bride) say Come: and let him that thirsteth come; let him that will, take the water of life freely (this verse is best understood as a reply of the Apostle to our Lord’s previous words).

Fuente: Henry Alford’s Greek Testament

As in En. cviii. 6 (only mention of prophets in Enoch), “what God announces through the mouth of the prophets” relates to the future. . the plurality of spirits is an archaic detail ( cf. Rev 1:4 ) adapted also from the Enochic formula (Enoch 37:2, etc.), “God of the spirits”.

Fuente: The Expositors Greek Testament by Robertson

NASB (UPDATED) TEXT: Rev 22:6

6And he said to me, “These words are faithful and true”; and the Lord, the God of the spirits of the prophets, sent His angel to show to His bond-servants the things which must soon take place.

Rev 22:6 “he said to me” This refers to the angels who had the seven bowls of judgment (cf. Rev 21:9; Rev 22:1; Rev 22:8-10).

“these words are faithful and true” This phrase is used to describe

1. Jesus (cf. Rev 1:5; Rev 3:7; Rev 3:14; Rev 19:11)

2. Jesus’ followers (cf. Rev 17:14)

3. God’s word (cf. Rev 19:9; Rev 21:5; Rev 22:6)

Often God is described as “righteous and true” (cf. Rev 15:3; Rev 16:7; Rev 19:2). The Hebrew behind this phrase implies total trustworthiness.

“The Lord, the God of the spirits of the prophets” This is possibly:

1. an allusion to Rev 19:10

2. a reference to the inspiration of the OT (cf. 2Ti 3:16; 2Pe 1:20-21)

3. a reference to the inspiration of the NT (cf. 2Pe 3:15-16)

4. a reference to the gospel preachers of John’s day

5. a reference to John’s book (visions)

The original Greek texts did not have capitalization. Often the translators or interpreters must decide whether “spirit” refers to the Holy Spirit or the human spirit. This text refers to the human spirit (cf. 1Co 14:32; Heb 12:9).

“sent His angel” This is an allusion to Rev 1:1. These closing verses are very similar in their motifs to chapter 1. The traditional personal letter format used in Revelation 1 is used again in Revelation 22.

“the things which must soon take place” There is a series of allusions to the imminence of the Lord’s coming (cf. Rev 1:1; Rev 1:3; Rev 3:11; Rev 22:6 [twice], Rev 22:7; Rev 22:10; Rev 22:12; Rev 22:20). The two-thousand-year delay thus far is somewhat difficult for believers to understand (the delay is revealed in 2 Thessalonians), but it must be seen that every generation of Christians has the hope of the coming of the Lord in their day. There is a real tension in the NT between the any-moment return of the Lord and some things that must occur first. Believers are to remain faithful and active!

Here is a brief quote on this subject from my commentary on Matthew.

“There is theological paradoxical tension between

1. the any moment return (cf. Mat 24:27; Mat 24:44) and the fact that some events in history must occur

2. the Kingdom as future and the Kingdom as present.

The NT states that some events will occur before the Second Coming.

1. the Gospel preached to the whole world (cf. Mat 24:14 : Mar 13:10)

2. the great apostasy (cf. Mat 24:10-13; Mat 24:21; 1Ti 4:1; 2Ti 3:1 ff; 2Th 2:3)

3. the revelation of the “man of sin” (cf. Dan 7:23-26; Dan 9:24-27; 2Th 2:3)

4. removal of the one who restrains (cf. 2Th 2:6-7)

5. Jewish revival (cf. Zec 12:10; Romans 11)”

Those who believe that there is significant parallelism among the seven literary units of the book also assert that each one of them represents the period between the first and second comings of Christ from different perspectives (e.g., William Hendriksen, More Than Conquerors). If this is true then the texts that refer to the imminent coming of Christ (cf. Rev 1:3; Rev 3:11; Rev 22:7; Rev 22:10; Rev 22:12; Rev 22:20) refer to the initiation of these prophecies after the death and resurrection of Christ. The eschatological ball is rolling!

Fuente: You Can Understand the Bible: Study Guide Commentary Series by Bob Utley

he. i.e. the angel of Rev 1:1.

unto = to.

sayings = words. App-121.

faithful. App-150.

true. App-175.

the Lord God. As Rev 22:5.

God = the God

of . . . prophets. The texts read “of the spirits (App-101.) of the prophets” (App-189).

sent. App-174.

shortly. As Rev 1:1. Note Figure of speech Polysyndeton (App-6) in verses: Rev 22:1-6.

Fuente: Companion Bible Notes, Appendices and Graphics

6-21.] CONCLUDING ASSURANCES AND EXHORTATIONS: and herein, 6, 7, assurance by the angel of the truth of what has been said, in the terms of ch. Rev 1:1. And he (the angel) said to me, These sayings (the whole book, by what follows) are faithful and true (see on reff.): and the Lord (Jehovah) the God of the spirits of the prophets (i. e. of those spirits of theirs, which, informed by the Holy Spirit, have become the vehicles of prophecy) sent His angel to shew to His servants what things must come to pass shortly (on the whole of this see on ch. Rev 1:1, from which place it is repeated at the close of the book of which that is the opening). And behold, I come quickly (the speech passes into the words of Christ Himself, reported by the angel: so in Rev 22:12, and in ch. Rev 11:3): Blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book (the speech is a mixed one: in , the Writer has in view the roll of his book now lying all but completed before him: but the words are the saying of the angel: would express it formally). And I John (was he) who heard and saw these things (pres. participles without temporal significance-was the hearer and seer of these things): and when I heard and saw, I fell down (as in ch. Rev 19:10, where see notes) to worship before the feet of the angel who shewed me (pres. part. as above) these things. And he saith to me, Take heed not: I am a fellow-servant of thine, and (a fellow-servant) of thy brethren the prophets, and of those who keep the sayings of this book: worship God (the same feeling again prevailed over the Apostle as before, and is met with a similar rebuke. I hardly can with Dsterd. see any real distinction implied, in the here, between the situation of the Seer then and now. D. thinks, the intention now is to exalt his prophetic office and character). And he saith to me, Seal not up the sayings of the prophecy of this book (cf. ch. Rev 10:4, where the command is otherwise: also reff. Daniel): for the time is near (in Dan 8:26, the reason for sealing up the vision is that the time shall be for many days). Let him that is unjust (pres. part. as above) commit injustice (aor. of acts, not of a state, which would be pres.) still: and let the filthy (reff.: morally polluted) pollute himself (in the constant middle sense of passive verbs when the act depends on a mans self) still: and let the righteous do righteousness still, and the holy sanctify himself still (see Eze 3:27; and cf. Mat 26:45, Sleep on now, and take your rest: behold, the hour is at hand: also Eze 20:39. The saying has solemn irony in it: the time is so short, that there is hardly room for change-the lesson conveyed in its depth is, Change while there is time). Behold I come quickly, and my reward is with me (reff. Isa.) to render (this infin. may be either of purpose, dependent jointly on and . …, or epexegetic of that which is wrapped up in the word itself. No very satisfactory account is given of this last construction in Winer, edn. 6, 44. 1) to each as his work is (these words sound as if spoken by our Lord Himself: perhaps at the conclusion, the Apostle puts together, in prophetic shortness, many divine sayings of warning and consolation, with the replies to them). I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end (these words have hitherto been said by the Father: see above, ch. Rev 1:8, Rev 21:6, and notes. And in all probability it is so here likewise, whether we assume the words to be spoken by Christ in Gods name, or by the Eternal Father Himself). Blessed are they that wash their robes (see the digest. The vulg. addition in sanguine agni, after ch. Rev 7:14, is of course the right supplement), that they may (on with fut. see reff. and ch. Rev 14:13 note. It is a mixed construction: between that they may have and for they shall have) have the power (licence) over the tree (to eat of the tree: of the direction of their reaching for the fruit) of life, and may enter by the gates into the city. Outside are the dogs (impure persons, reff.), and the sorcerers, and the fornicators, and the murderers, and the idolaters, and every one loving and practising falsehood (see on these, ch. Rev 21:8).

I Jesus (our Lord now speaks directly in His own person) sent my angel to testify these things to you in (the of addition by juxtaposition, see reff.) the churches. I am the root (reff.) and the race (the offspring, as E. V. So Virg. n. iv. 12, genus esse Deorum) of David, the bright morning-star (that brings in the everlasting day).

And the Spirit (in the churches, and in the prophets) and the Bride (the Church herself) say Come (see on ch. Rev 6:1, &c.): and let him that heareth (the cry of the Spirit and Bride) say Come: and let him that thirsteth come; let him that will, take the water of life freely (this verse is best understood as a reply of the Apostle to our Lords previous words).

Fuente: The Greek Testament

Rev 22:6. , and) There is a wonderful disagreement between interpreters respecting the distribution of the speeches in this epilogue. But if my interpretation pleases any one, there speaks-

The angel, Rev 22:6.

Jesus, Rev 22:7.

John, respecting his own action, and his correction by the angel, Rev 22:8-9.

Again, in the same order,

The angel, Rev 22:10-11.

Jesus, Rev 22:12-17

John, Rev 22:18-19.

John and Jesus, and again John, Rev 22:20-21.

– , faithful and true) To be received with firm faith, and moreover with a worthy interpretation. The truth of these words was confirmed, in particular, respecting the marriage of the Lamb, ch. Rev 19:9, and respecting the renewing of the universe, ch. Rev 21:5; now generally, as in an epilogue, the truth of the words of the whole book is confirmed: and that is consistent with itself, even in places where many refuse to believe. But woe unto them who love falsehood rather than this truth, and who defame the truth as falsehood, and especially that very truth which lies between these confirmations, ch. Rev 20:1, etc.- , the God of the spirits of the prophets) There is only one Spirit, by whose inspiration the prophets spake: 1Pe 1:11; 2Pe 1:21 : but individuals, according to the measure given unto them, had their own spirits. The God of these spirits is the LORD; for instance, the God of David, the God of Daniel. And the same sent His angel, that the approaching accomplishment of those things which had been foretold by those ancient prophets might now be shown to John.

Fuente: Gnomon of the New Testament

Rev 22:6-7

PART SIXTH

PRACTICAL WARNINGS, COMMANDS,

AND PROMISES

Revelation 22:6-21

1. THE ANGEL’S ATTESTATION

Rev 22:6-7

6 These words are faithful and true.–As the symbolic images are now completed the angel comes directly to John with the assurance that the words (visions and spoken words) are true that there has been no deception and all things will come to pass just as disclosed. That an angel was the speaker is evident from verse 8 compared with Rev 21:9. John had already been commanded to write that the sayings were true. (Rev 21:5.) He further assures John that the God who inspired the prophets of old had sent his angel to make these revelations; hence, the same proof that they were divine and properly classed as prophetic sayings.

The things which must shortly come to pass.–This is the same statement with which the hook opens. See notes on Rev 1:1. It is appropriate, after the symbols had been finished, that John should again be assured that the revealed things would shortly come to pass. Of course, the natural meaning for this expression is that the things revealed would soon begin to transpire, not that all of them would soon begin. If these symbols contain a series of events, however few, then all of them could not begin at the same time. If the series is long, then some could be in distant centuries. Since the millennium and the judgment are a part of the imagery, it is unquestionably a fact that all did not begin soon; therefore, the beginning of the series must be the meaning.

7 And behold, I come quickly. Blessed is he that keepeth the words of the prophecy of this book.–Apparently the angel is here repeating the words of Jesus, or Jesus is speaking through the angel. The expression “I come quickly” evidently is intended to encourage saints to keep “the words of the prophecy of this book.” Of course, it cannot mean that he promised to come personally in a short time or soon from the time John received these revelations; for more than eighteen hundred years have passed and he has not come yet. If it means that he would come figuratively in blessings and punishments during the time covered by the symbols of the book, then he did come soon and the words are equivalent to “shortly come to pass” in the preceding verse. In a similar way he did come to those who faithfully suffered during the time signified; for eachindividual’s death was a virtual coining of the Lord to him–it meant his sufferings would soon be over. If it refers to his actual coming at the judgment, then “quickly” must be understood as God views time, not as men do. In a practical sense the encouragement would apply to each individual with the assurance that his efforts would not be very long in comparison with the length of his reward. We have here the statement that the symbols of this hook are a prophecy.

Commentary on Rev 22:6-7 by Foy E. Wallace

(1) The confirmation of the testimony of the angel -Rev 22:6-11.

Rev 22:6 : These sayings are faithful and true: the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angel to show unto his servants the things which must shortly be done.

This is the verification of the truth of the whole apocalypse by John after the vision was ended. Here the epilogue corresponded with the prologue. It was the reiteration and the reaffirmation of Rev 1:1-5. It corresponded to the introduction and reverted to the same theme. It was the claim of the authorship of the Revelation repeated in the expression I John in both Rev 1:8 and Rev 22:8. It was the seal of its being a revelation from God–John heard and saw these things. His epilogue was in verbal agreement with the prologue, and ends with the affirmation of direct communication with God and Jesus Christ.

1. These sayings are faithful and true. This unequivocal claim of integrity has parallel in the postulation of Heb 1:1, that the God who had spoken unto the fathers by the prophets had shown unto his servants these things by John, The same God who had inspired John and Revelation therefore possessed the same credentials of inspiration.

2. The things which must shortly be done. The verbal agreement with Rev 1:1 here emphasized that the things revealed were of high importance and attention to them was imperative because of the shortness of time. It again supports the main thesis of this treatise that the events belonged to this period of time.

Rev 22:7 : Behold I come quickly: blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book.

Here again John reverted to the first chapter of the book in order to affirm the truth of what had there been said prior to the beginning of the vision.

1. Behold, I come quickly. At this point Jesus himself was not speaking, as when these words were first uttered by him; but John was here quoting the words of Jesus which had previously been spoken. Here the person sent was speaking for the Sender.

There are three keys words in the context: signify and shortly and quickly. These words were significant of the method of conveying the revelation through signs; and the time for the fulfillment was impending; and the coming of the Lord would be in relation to the events and concurrent with them. The three words together meant that everything relevant to the catastrophe and calamities predicted and depicted were about to come to pass. Verily I say unto you, all these things shall come upon this generation–Jesus in Mat 23:36.

2. Blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book. But the book had not yet been written, yet its message was imperative and the reading of it to his servants was urgent. The fact that this somewhat ominous statement was made in the first chapter and repeated in the last chapter, thus before and after the vision was received, accentuates the immediacy of its contents. Why the urgency of this command if the events were so remote as the future theory represents?

Commentary on Rev 22:6-7 by Walter Scott

Closing Testimonies.

THE ANGEL AUTHENTICATES THE PROPHECY.

Rev 22:6-7. – And he said to me, These words (are) faithful and true; and (the) Lord God of the spirits of the prophets has sent His angel to show to His bondmen the things which must soon come to pass. And behold, I come quickly. Blessed (is) he who keeps the words of the prophecy of this book. We have several solemn affirmations as to the faithfulness and truth of God in His words and ways: by saints (Rev 15:3; Rev 19:2); by the altar (Rev 16:7); by God Himself (Rev 21:5); and here by an angel. (Not the greatness and glory of the Revelations, but their faithfulness and truth are the testimony of the angel. It has been remarked that a book is valuable in proportion to its truth.) These prophetic visions separately and as a whole demand our closest, our most profound consideration, not because of their bearing upon us, but rather because the glory of our Master and the blessing of the world are involved in the faithfulness and truth of these divine unfoldings of the future (see Dan 8:26).

The Lord God of the spirits of the prophets (R.V.). The feelings, the hopes, the varied experiences of the prophets of old were directed by and under the control of the Lord God. He was with them, as He is with us. This unity of moral action links us up with the prophets of old in a walk and realization of the hopes revealed then and now. Then in the words which follow we read, hast sent His angel to show to His bondmen the things which must soon come to pass. The opening (Rev 1:1) and close of the book are thus connected. The utmost care has been taken by the divine author of the book that these revelations of things, which must soon come to pass, should reach the servants, or bondmen. He counts upon their interest. The certainty of the Lords speedy Coming, and gravity and imminence of the numerous events foretold, should surely lead to increased, prayerful, and painstaking study of this book, the only one specially addressed to servants of God as such.

COMING QUICKLY.

Rev 22:7. – And behold, I come quickly. The constant repetition of the conjunction and must not be regarded as necessarily connecting preceding statements with the immediate subject on hand. The word in the great majority of instances simply marks a new beginning without any direct reference to what has gone before.

Behold, I come quickly. It is the voice of Christ we hear. It is not the announcement of a prophetic event, but the authoritative word of the Lord Himself. Three times and in different connections does He announce His Coming (Rev 22:7; Rev 22:12; Rev 22:20). In each instance the word quickly is found as intimating how near we are to the realization of that blessed hope.

BLESSED.

7. – He (not they, as in Rev 1:3) who keeps the words of the prophecy of this book is pronounced blessed. Thus the blessing at the beginning is repeated at the close, only it seems more individual here. The completion of the book is also contemplated in the promised blessing at the close. Compare the words of this prophecy (Rev 1:3) with the words of the prophecy of this book (Book, as applied to the completed Revelation, occurs seven times in this last and closing part (Rev 22:7; Rev 22:9-10; Rev 22:18-19). The Revelation is complete both in its promises and threats. Nothing to be added.) (Rev 22:7). To keep these words is to treasure them, to prize them, and act upon them.

Commentary on Rev 22:6-7 by E.M. Zerr

Rev 22:6. He said means the angel said it to John. Faithful and true. These words are virtually the same in their fundamental meaning, and either could properly be used in place of the other for general purposes. Technically they mean the words or sayings just delivered by the angel are worthy of being relied on because they are true. Of the holy prophets is referred to as an evidence that His sayings are worthy of being relied on, for the predictions that God enabled the prophets to make were fulfilled in the proper time. For that reason there should be no doubt concerning the predictions that He has authorized his servants to make in the present book. Sent his angel. This refers to the angel who has been with John from the beginning of his vision on the isle. Must shortly be done. The Englishman’s Greek New Testament renders this phrase, “must come to pass soon.” The word in question is a relative term, for even a number of centuries would be short when compared with the endlessness of what will come after the judgment day. However, since this period in the vision of John is at the near approach of the last day (as to the events predicted), the end is literally close at hand.

Rev 22:7. Quickly is from the same word as “shortly” in the preceding verse. Blessed means happy, denoting a condition entirely satisfactory. Keepeth is from TEREO and in the King James Version it is translated hold fast 1 time, keep 57, observe 4, preserve 2, reserve 8, watch 2. It is a word with many shades of meaning which must be determined in each place according to the connection– If it is used in relation to things a man is required to do, then it means he must understand and do them. If used only of things stated as truths, whether they are predictions or otherwise, then the word means we are to believe them and keep them in respectful remembrance. The present verse applies the word to the prophecy of this book, hence it has the meaning just described. However, it would imply some activities on the part of man, for among the things predicted is the judgment day on which men will be judged according to their deeds. Hence if a man believes and respects that prediction, he will not forget it but will fashion his life in such a way as to be adjudged worthy of everlasting life. This explains why the angel said those were blessed or happy who keepeth the sayings.

Commentary on Rev 22:6-7 by Burton Coffman

Rev 22:6

And he said unto me, These words are faithful and true: and the Lord, the God of the spirits of the prophets, sent his angel to show unto his servants the things which must shortly come to pass.

These words are faithful and true …. Apparently, an angel is the speaker here, but Christ is behind all that he said. “This whole book is represented by John as the Revelation of Jesus Christ, through the angel.”[25] The divine authority of the entire Revelation is affirmed. “The primary purpose of this epilogue (Rev 22:6-21) is to affirm the authority of John’s book.[26] The meaning of this whole verse is: “The words of the Christian prophets do not speak their own minds, but God’s.”[27] Lenski’s outline of this epilogue is:

God’s attestation (Rev 22:6-15).

Jesus’ attestation (Rev 22:16-19).

John is dismissed (Rev 22:20).

John’s farewell greeting (Rev 22:21).[28]

We acutely need this divine attestation, for the most glaring error in most of the books one reads on this prophecy is that of making the “source” of these visions to be everything or anything except what it is; namely, a revelation from God (Rev 1:1). As far as this writer is concerned, if people do not believe that God authored this book, they could spare themselves the trouble of studying it, much more the labor of writing their comments on it.

“The angel” here does not say that God commissioned “me,” his angel, but that, “God commissioned his angel.” “Angel is used here generically to designate whatever angel acted at any time in the vision.”[29] Thus the angel here speaks for God himself.

The God of the spirits of the prophets … The “prophets” here are those of both the Old and the New Testaments; God spoke through all of them. This is the message of God’s deputy angel in this passage.

To show the things that must shortly come to pass … As Wesley put it, “which will begin to be performed immediately.”[30] “The adverb shortly modifies the verb come to pass, telling how it is to occur, suddenly.”[31] The false idea that John expected all of the things in this prophecy to appear within a few years should be rejected. The present dispensation was described as “a thousand years” in Revelation 20; and that proves that our prophecy takes a long view of the ages; and yet many of the things in it were in the process of happening at the very time it was written.

[25] G. R. Beasley-Murray, op. cit., p. 334.

[26] George Eldon Ladd, op. cit., p. 289.

[27] J. R. Dummelow, Commentary on the Holy Bible (New York: Macmillan Company, 1937), p. 1092.

[28] R. C. H. Lenski, op. cit., p. 655.

[29] Ibid., p. 657.

[30] John Wesley, op. cit., in loco.

[31] James D. Strauss, The Seer, the Saviour, and the Saved (Joplin, Missouri: College Press, 1972), p. 288.

Rev 22:7

And behold, I come quickly. Blessed is he that keepeth the words of the prophecy of this book.

And behold, I come quickly … “It is no longer possible to believe that John had a naive attitude toward this promise.”[32] He did not believe that all things in Revelation would come to pass in his generation. If so, how could he have envisioned 1,000 years before the final judgment (Rev 20:5)? It is not John who is mixed up on this but some of the interpreters.

Quickly … can mean “soon”; but it may also mean “suddenly” or “unexpectedly”; and, “The ambiguity is no doubt purposeful in order to provide for all generations a spiritual and moral tension of expectancy and perspective.”[33] No Christian should live in any other way than in a consciousness that the Lord may come at any time.

It is irreligious to ask, Who is the speaker here? Angels are the envoys and mouthpieces of God here, as in the Old Testament, and therefore entitled to speak either in their own name or that of the Lord.[34] The words, “I am coming” show that Jesus is being quoted.[35]

Blessed is he that keepeth the words of the prophecy of this book … “In principle, this applies to all of God’s book (the Bible).”[36] The book of Revelation, however, is primarily in view.

Before leaving this verse, we wish to emphasize that, “In the Christian doctrine of the last things, the imminence of the end is moral rather than chronological.”[37] Each successive Christian generation, for anything that is known to the contrary, could be the last generation. “In that sense, the time is always near.”[38] The achievement of this state of expectancy and uncertainty was evidently God’s design in the language chosen, not only here, but throughout the whole New Testament.

“I come quickly” need not mean “I come soon,” though that meaning is possible. The expression may also mean, “I come suddenly.”[39]

Since some nineteen centuries have already passed since these words were written, we know that the second meaning cited here is the correct one.

[32] G. B. Caird, The Revelation of St. John the Divine (New York: Harper and Row, 1966), p. 283.

[33] George Eldon Ladd, op. cit., p. 290.

[34] James Moffatt, Expositor’s Greek New Testament, Vol. V (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1967). p. 488.

[35] R. C. H. Lenski, op. cit., p. 659.

[36] James D. Strauss, op. cit., p. 288.

[37] F. F. Bruce, A New Testament Commentary (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan Publishing House, 1969), p. 665.

[38] Ibid.

[39] Edward A. McDowell, The Meaning and Message of Revelation (Nashville: Broadman Press, 1951), p. 218.

Commentary on Rev 22:6-7 by Manly Luscombe

6 Then he said to me, These words are faithful and true. And the Lord God of the holy prophets sent His angel to show His servants the things which must shortly take place. The angel assures John that what he has seen is assured. It is true. It will happen. God keeps His promises. (2Co 1:20). As we near the end of Revelation we are reminded of the promise at the beginning, these are things that MUST shortly come to pass. (Rev 1:1). It is clear that the vision of Revelation was to begin shortly. It does not mean that all would be completed in a year or two. It does mean that they would begin to happen.

7 Behold, I am coming quickly! Blessed is he who keeps the words of the prophecy of this book. Some try to argue that the angel and not Jesus spoke these words. In my view, it does not matter, because angels were messengers who spoke what was given them by Jesus. Many find a difficulty with the term shortly when it has been 2,000 years since this promise was given.

I believe there are two issues that must be discussed as shown here:

1. Meaning of shortly – In our understanding of time, measured in days, months and years, 2,000 years is a long time. We must remember that God does not work on our clock and calendar. A day is like a thousand years. There fore, to God, it has been a couple of days. No time at all.

2. Meaning of coming – Is this the second coming in which the world ends? Is this a promise of Jesus to come again and end the world, as we know it?

OR Could this coming be the coming in answer to prayers? Could it be that Jesus will come into the hearts of the obedient to give them protection and guide them providentially? The preceding verse promised that these were things which must shortly take place. I believe the coming here is the coming to work out the matters promised and predicted in this book.

Fuente: Old and New Testaments Restoration Commentary

CHAPTER 22:6-21

The Final Messages

1. The angels message (Rev 22:6-11)

2. The message of the Lord (Rev 22:12-13)

3. The two classes (Rev 22:14-15)

4. His final testimony (Rev 22:16)

5. The answer of the Spirit and the bride (Rev 22:17)

6. The final warning (Rev 22:18-19)

7. The final word–the final prayer (Rev 22:20-21)

Rev 22:6-11.

Here it is an angel who speaks. And the Lord God of the holy prophets (literal: of the spirits of the prophets) sent His angel to show unto His servants the things which must shortly be done. This reminds us of the beginning of the book, where we find a similar announcement. Suddenly some day these things will come to pass. The Lord will call His people to glory in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, and then these things John had beheld will shortly come to pass. And then His own voice breaks in: Behold I come quickly; Blessed is He that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book. Three times we find this announcement in the last chapter (Rev 22:7, Rev 22:12 and Rev 22:20). Here it is connected with the walk of the believer.

Just as in the beginning of the book a blessing is pronounced upon them that read the words of this prophecy (Rev 1:3), so we have at the close of Revelation a similar beatitude. And keeping these blessed words means more than believing in them; their power is to shape our conduct and walk. What godly lives Gods people would live on earth, what unselfish and sacrificing lives, if they remembered constantly Him who thus testifies three times in the last chapter of the Bible, Behold I come quickly. Note the awful results in Christendom today for not having kept the sayings of the Prophecy of this book.

Then the Seer is told not to seal the sayings of this prophecy. Daniel was told to do the opposite (Dan 12:4). Old Testament prophecy reveals prophetic events in the far distance. They could then not be fully comprehended. But after Christ came and the full revelation of things to come is given, no sealing is needed; the events are at hand, yet grace has delayed and delays still the fulfillment. And the heavenly messenger announces also the fixed state of the two classes into which all humanity is divided. The unjust and filthy, the unsaved, continue to exist in the nature which they possess, and the fact that the desires of that corrupt nature can no longer be gratified must constitute in itself an unspeakable torment. The righteous and holy, those saved by grace, partakers of the divine nature, will always be righteous and holy.

Rev 22:12-13.

And now the Lord speaks again. For the second time He announces His coming. Here it is in connection with rewards. My reward is with Me. He Himself will receive His reward which is due Him as the sin-bearer. He will see the travail of His soul and be satisfied. And with His coming, His own people will receive their rewards. What a stimulating power His soon coming is to service! And the coming One is the Alpha and Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.

Rev 22:14-15.

Once more the two classes come into view. This is in fullest keeping with the end of the book and the end of the Bible. The Authorized Version here is faulty. Instead of Blessed are they that do His commandments the correct reading is Blessed are they that wash their robes. The former is an interpolation; the latter is the divine statement. (All leading scholars like Alford, Darby, etc., make the change. Even the Vulgate has it Beati, qui lavant stolas suas in sanguinem Agni.) Eternal life and eternal glory cannot be obtained by keeping commandments, by the works of the law. The blood of the Lamb alone is the title to glory. And then the other class. The one who rejects Christ, and thereby denies his lost condition and need of a Saviour, loveth and maketh a lie. He lives according to the old nature and the fruits of the flesh are there.

Rev 22:16.

How He speaks in this last Bible book! In the beginning of Revelation we find His self-witness in the church-message and once more we hear His voice, bearing testimony to Himself. How majestic: I, Jesus! He reveals Himself once more by the name of humiliation. What comfort it must have been to John! What comfort it is to us! Then He speaks of Himself as the Root and Offspring of David. He is Davids Lord and Davids Son (Psa 110:1). He is the hope of Israel and in Him the promises made to David will all be realized. This will be the case when He comes to reign in power and great glory. But He also speaks of Himself as the bright and morning-star. His coming in power and glory is the sunrise for Israel and the Gentiles, the breaking of the millennial day. But for His Church He comes first as the morning star, as the Morning star in the eastern sky precedes the rising of the sun in all its glory. The Lord will come as the Morning star some time in the interval between the 69th and 70th week of Daniel and as the Sun of Righteousness after that week has come to an end.

Rev 22:17.

As soon as He mentions Himself as the Morning star, there is an answer from the earth. The Spirit now down here, for He came down from heaven on Pentecost, and the Bride, the Church, say, Come. It is addressed to the Lord. They both long for His coming. And each individual believer who heareth is asked to join with this Come. Surely in these days of darkness and world-confusion, the Spirit saith, Come! And never before were there so many individual believers on earth who say Come, who wait for His coming. And the Come–from loving hearts–will increase and become a loud and pleading cry, till one blessed day He will answer and come to take His waiting people home. Here also is the final gospel message of the Bible. He that will, let him take the water of life freely. Once more a loving God makes it clear that the water of life is free to all who want it. It is the last Whosoever in the Bible.

Rev 22:18-19.

And what a solemn warning is given! In a larger sense the warning applies to the entire Word of God. Higher criticism, which takes away, and false teachers, who add unto it, find written here their deserved judgment. But the Revelation is specially in view. Whosoever meddles with His Revelation must fall under the severest divine displeasure. Beware! oh ye critics! Beware! ye who call this book uninspired and warn against the study of it!

Rev 22:20-21.

We reach the final statements of this great book. For the third time He announces His coming. He that testifieth these things saith, surely I come quickly. It is the last time our Lord speaks from heaven. The next time His voice will be heard will be on that day when He descends out of heaven with a shout. While the two former announcements of His coming found in this chapter are preceded by the word, Behold, this last one affirms the absolute certainty of the event. And there is the answer, the blessed response. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus. It is the Church which answers His positive and certain announcement. It is the last word recorded in the Bible coming from the lips of man.

The first word we hear man address to the Lord in the Bible is the solemn word I heard Thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid (Gen 3:10). The last word addressed to the Lord by redeemed man is even so, come, Lord Jesus. And between these two utterances in Genesis and Revelation is the story of redemption. Well might this final prayer of the Bible be termed the forgotten prayer. But it is equally true, with the revival of the study of prophecy, more hearts and lips are praying today for His coming, than ever before. And the prayer will be answered. May the reader and the writer pray for His coming daily and may our lives too bear witness to the fact that we expect Him to answer the petition of His people. The final benediction assures us once more of the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. The better rendering is The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with all the saints.

Fuente: Gaebelein’s Annotated Bible (Commentary)

Chapter 58

The scriptures confirmed

‘And he said unto me, These sayings are faithful and true: and the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angel to shew unto his servants the things which must shortly be done.’

Rev 22:6-21

In these verses, God the Holy Spirit confirms his Holy Word to us, giving us distinct evidences of inspiration. This is Gods own confirmation of the Holy Scriptures as his Word. Gods last written word to man is a word of confirmation and ratification to the whole Volume of Inspiration. Many think these verses refer only to the contents of the Book of Revelation. But John begins by telling us that what he is saying includes and completes Gods revelation of himself by the holy prophets (v.6). By divine arrangement, this is the last chapter of the Book of God. What it says is true of the whole canon of Scripture from Genesis to Revelation.

Four facts about the bible

Here are four facts about the Bible that need to be constantly and forcefully emphasized with clarity in the church of God today. Let all who believe God be fully persuaded of these things and seek to understand them clearly.

1. The Bible alone is the inspired Word of God (2Pe 1:19-21)

‘All scriptures is given by inspiration of God’ (2Ti 3:16). Holy men of God, prophets and apostles, chosen, ordained, and gifted by God wrote the Scriptures as they were infallibly guided by the Spirit of God. Though these men were, for the most part, unknown to one another, though they lived in different lands, cultures, and ages, though they were men of greatly varying natural abilities and lifestyles (kings, shepherds, fishermen, doctors, etc.), they all wrote of one Person and declared the same message without the slightest contradiction (Luk 24:27; Luk 24:44-47). The Person of whom the Scriptures speak is our Lord Jesus Christ (Joh 1:45; Joh 5:39). The message the Scriptures declare is redemption by the blood of Christ (Luk 24:45-46), redemption purposed by grace, accomplished by grace, applied by grace, and received by grace.

2. That holy Book, the Bible, is to be reverenced, honored, and esteemed by us as the Word of God (Psa 138:2)

David said, ‘Thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name.’ I know that men and women can be idolatrous and superstitious regarding the Word of God. But let us never depreciate or in anyway show any disrespect or disregard for the Word of God. If God has magnified his Word above all his name, then surely those who know and reverence his name will reverence his Word. In an attempt to rebuke a superstitious attitude for the Scriptures, I have heard men say, ‘Apart from the application of the Holy Spirit, this Book is no more valuable than the morning newspaper.’ Oh, no! Unlike any other printed Word, there is a special blessing promised to those who read, hear, obey, and keep the things written in this Book. This blessed Book is the Word of God (Heb 4:12).

3. We are required by God to submit to the total authority of his Word as his Word (2Ti 3:16-17)

Creeds and confessions are useful in their place, but the only rule of faith and practice in the house of God must be the Word of God. We must not be induced by anyone to pin our faith to the words of fallible men. Faith simply submits to Gods Revelation. Faith does not argue with Gods Word, oppose Gods Word, or ignore Gods Word. Faith believes the Word, submits to the Word, and obeys the Word. Faith holds the Book of God to be singularly authoritative in all things. The Holy Scriptures alone are authoritative in the kingdom of God.

4. The Word of God is, by the blessing of God the Holy Spirit, the instrumental source and cause of all spiritual life in men (Heb 4:12; Jas 1:18; 1Pe 1:23-25; Rom 10:1; Romans 7)

God saves his elect by the Word which he has given, through the preaching of the gospel. He who preaches and teaches the gospel of Christ fully preaches and teaches the Word of God fully (Compare Act 20:27; 1Co 2:2; 1Pe 1:25). That alone is Gods ordained means of grace (1Co 1:21).

Gods own confirmation of his word

The Bible is, in its entirety, the Word of God, inerrant, infallible, and immutable. Let us reverence and submit to it as such. Here are fifteen facts that will help to strengthen and confirm your faith in Gods Revelation of his Son, the Holy Bible.

1. The Bible is confirmed as the Word of God by the name of him who gave it (Rev 22:6)

. It has been given to us to us by our Mediator, Jesus Christ, who is the Lord God of the holy prophets (Rev 1:1). Christ is the living Word of whom the written Word speaks (Joh 1:1-3). The whole Revelation of God to man is given in, by, and through the mediatoral Man, Christ Jesus, the Son of God. And all that the Lord God reveals is faithful and true. Not one word from God has ever fallen to the ground, neither a word of prophecy, nor of promise, nor of threat.

2. The Bible is confirmed as the Word of God by the messengers God has employed to give it (Rev 22:6)

. The holy God gave his holy Word to his holy angels, to give to his holy prophets, to show his servants in every generation the mind and will of God in all things spiritual. I do not know how the angels are involved in giving us the Word of God, but they have been (Gal 3:19). Perhaps they are charged with secretly protecting and preserving the Holy Scriptures for us.

3. The Scriptures will soon be confirmed to all the world as the Word of God by the accomplishment of all that has been revealed in them (Rev 22:6-7)

The Bible reveals certain ‘things which must shortly be done.’ Though men scoff and mock, they shall be done. Christ shall come. There will be a resurrection of the dead. This world shall be destroyed, both the religious and political systems of the world and the material earth upon which we now live. We will stand before God in judgment. Our God shall make all things new. We will spend eternity somewhere, either in heaven or in hell.

4. The Bible is confirmed to us as the Word of God by its honesty and forthrightness in exposing the sins of its most eminent characters (Rev 22:8-9)

The first time John fell down to worship an angel, it might be overlooked as a mistake. He may have thought the angel was Christ himself. But here, Johns behavior reveals the sinfulness and idolatry that is in the hearts of all men (Rev 19:10). Even when he was in the Spirit, John was only a sinful man, prone to every imaginable evil. Why does the Word of God so plainly and frequently reveal the corruption and sin of Gods elect? (1.) To show us our depravity. (2.) To show us that salvation is by grace alone (1Co 4:7). (3.) To show us that Christ alone is our righteousness (2Co 5:21). (4.) To keep us looking to Christ alone for all our salvation (1Co 1:30).

5. Another confirmation of the Bible as the Word of God is the fact that it is open to public scrutiny (Rev 22:10)

Gods Word is not a secret revelation. It is open to all, for all to read and hear. No part of Gods truth is hidden from anyone; and Gods servants make no effort to hide it. All the doctrines of the Bible are open for inspection. All the prophecies of the Bible are open for scrutiny. All the Scriptures are open to be studied and believed (1Jn 5:10).

6. The Bible is confirmed to us as the Word of God by the effect it has upon those who hear it and read it (Rev 22:11)

. To some it is a savor of life unto life, to others a savor of death unto death (2Co 2:15-17); but none hear or read the Word of God without being affected by it.

7. The Bible shall be confirmed as the Word of God in the day of judgment, for in that day the Book of God, and the gospel it reveals will be the basis of judgment (Rev 22:12)

. In that great day the Lord Jesus Christ will dispense the rewards of justice according to the rule of Holy Scripture. Those who obey the gospel shall be saved. Those who disobey the gospel shall be damned.

8. The Bible shall be confirmed to all men as the Word of God by Christ himself when he comes to reward his saints (Rev 22:13-14)

They shall live who obey his commandments (1Jn 3:23). But the only way any sinner can obey Gods commandments is to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ (Rom 3:28-31). All who do believe shall eat of the tree of life by just right because in Christ they are worthy to do so (Col 1:12). They shall enter into the city of God.

9. The Bible shall be confirmed as the Word of God, faithful and true, by condemning and banishing from heaven all who despise its message and reject its counsel (Rev 22:15)

‘Dogs’ are religious prostitutes, those who have prostituted the gospel for their own gain (Deu 23:17-18; Isa 56:10-11; Php 3:2). ‘Sorcerers’ are superstitious people, people who look to the stars, astrological signs, or palm readers for information, rather than to the Lord God. ‘Whoremongers and murderers’ are profligate, lawless rebels. ‘Idolaters’ are worshippers of strange or false gods and materialists, who idolize things. ‘Whosoever loveth and maketh a lie’ are false prophets and their followers, free-will, works religionists, those who attempt to mingle works with grace and the will of man with the will of God in the affair of salvation (Gal 1:6-8; 2Th 2:10; 1Co 15:22).

10. The Bible is confirmed as the Word of God to all who hear the gospel preached by the testimony of the Lord Jesus Christ through his messenger (Rev 22:16)

It is Christ who speaks to us by his Word. The angel (preacher) is his messenger. His message is found and heard in his churches.

11. The Holy Scriptures are confirmed to us as the Word of God by its open call to sinners issued by the Lord of glory (Rev 22:17)

No matter how it is interpreted, this call is full of grace. The Spirit of God and the Bride of Christ, say to the Lord Jesus, ‘Come,’ fulfill your word. The gospel preacher, the one who hears the Word of the Lord, stands upon the walls of Zion, and says, ‘Come…’ Sinner, come and welcome to Jesus, or Lord Jesus, come to us poor sinners. The Lord himself calls sinners (‘Him that is athirst!’ ‘Whosoever will!’) to come and take of the water of life freely.

12. God confirms the pages of Holy Scripture as his own Word by the solemn sanction he places upon every word, doctrine, and precept revealed in its pages (Rev 22:18-19)

Compare Deu 4:2 at the end of the law, and Mal 4:4 at the end of the prophets, and Rev 22:18-19 at the end of the apostles. The warnings here given apply to the entire Bible.

13. The Bible is confirmed as the Word of God by the testimony of Christ himself (Rev 22:20)

The Lord Jesus here declares, I will do what I have revealed and promised (Joh 14:1-3).

14. The Scriptures are confirmed to the world as the Word of God by the hope and expectation of Gods saints in this world (Rev 22:20)

Having heard his Word, the whole church of God stands upon the tiptoe of faith and cries, ‘Even so come, Lord Jesus!’

15. The Bible is confirmed to us as the Word of God by the benediction of grace with which it ends (Rev 22:21)

The Bible ends with this final word from God to men. With it the Lord God gives clear testimony to eternal Godhead of Christ. He is the Lord, the giver of all grace. Gods final word is a word of grace and an assurance of grace. His final word is ‘Amen,’ so shall it be!

Fuente: Discovering Christ In Selected Books of the Bible

These: Rev 19:9, Rev 21:5

the holy: Rev 18:20, Luk 1:70, Luk 16:16, Act 3:18, Rom 1:2, 1Pe 1:11, 1Pe 1:12, 2Pe 1:21, 2Pe 3:2

sent: Rev 1:1, Dan 3:28, Dan 6:22, Mat 13:41, Act 12:11, 2Th 1:7

which: Rev 22:7, Gen 41:32, 1Co 7:29, 2Pe 3:8, 2Pe 3:9

Reciprocal: Act 3:21 – holy Rom 1:1 – a servant Rom 3:2 – the oracles 1Co 2:12 – that 1Ti 1:15 – a faithful Rev 1:3 – for Rev 3:14 – the faithful Rev 4:1 – and I Rev 22:16 – I Jesus

Fuente: The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Rev 22:6. He said means the angel said it to John. Faithful and true. These words are virtually the same in their fundamental meaning, and either could properly be used in place of the other for general purposes. Technically they mean the words or sayings just delivered by the angel are worthy Rev 1:1 g relied on because they are true. Of the holy prophets is referred to as an evidence that His sayings are worthy of being relied on, for the predictions that God enabled the in ophets to make were fulfilled in the proper time. For that reason tSent Rev 22:7 l. here should be no doubt concerning the predictions that He has authorized his servants to make in the present book. This refers to the angel who has been with John from the beginning of his vision on the isle. Must shortly be done. The Englishman’s Greek New Testament renders this phrase, “must come to pass soon.” The word in question is a relative term, for even a number of centuries would be short when compared with the endlessness of what will come after the judgment day. However, since this period in the vision of John is at the near approach of the last day (as to the events predicted), the end is literally close at hand.

Comments by Foy E. Wallace

Verse 6.

(1) The confirmation of the testimony of the angel –Rev 22:6-11.

Verse 6: These sayings are faithful and true: the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angel to show unto his servants the things which must shortly be done.

This is the verification of the truth of the whole apocalypse by John after the vision was ended. Here the epilogue corresponded with the prologue. It was the reiteration and the re-affirmation of Rev 1:1-5. It corresponded to the introduction and reverted to the same theme. It was the claim of the authorship of the Revelation repeated in the expression I John in both Rev 1:8 and Rev 22:8. It was the seal of its being a revelation from God–John heard and saw these things. His epilogue was in verbal agreement with the prologue, and ends with the affirmation of direct communication with God and Jesus Christ.

1. These sayings are faithful and true. This unequivocal claim of integrity has parallel in the postulation of Hebrews 1:1-14:1-2, that the God who had spoken unto the fathers by the prophets had shown unto his servants these things by John, The same God who had inspired John and Revelation therefore possessed the same credentials of inspiration.

2. The things which must shortly be done. The verbal agreement with Rev 1:1 here emphasized that the things revealed were of high importance and attention to them was imperative because of the shortness of time. It again supports the main thesis of this treatise that the events belonged to this period of time.

Fuente: Combined Bible Commentary

Rev 22:6. And he said unto me, These words are faithful and true (comp. on chap. Rev 21:5). There is no ground to think that we have here a recapitulation by St. John himself of the things that had been spoken to him. We hear rather the words of the angel who has been throughout the whole book the medium by which the revelations contained in it have been communicated. Nor are we to confine the words to which reference is made to those connected with the vision of the New Jerusalem. They refer, as appears especially from Rev 22:7, to all the visions of the book.

And the Lord, the God of the spirits of the prophets, sent his angel to show unto his servants the things which must shortly come to pass. It is doubtful whether by the expression the spirits of the prophets we are to understand the spirits of the prophets themselves, which belong to God and which He uses for His own purposes, or the Spirit of God, that Spirit by which of old men spake from God, being moved by the Holy Ghost (2Pe 1:21). The latter appears to be the true interpretation, for it directs us more immediately to that Divine inspiration to which it is the object of the Seer to trace all the revelations which he had enjoyed, and it connects us more closely with that Prologue of the book which is at present in his mind. In chap. Rev 1:4 we have read of the seven Spirits which are before His throne, that is, of the one Spirit of God in the completeness and manifoldness of His gifts. Here, in like manner, we are led to think of the varied gifts of prophetic power with which God had been pleased to endow the commissioned servants of His will. The things revealed in this instance were those already spoken of in chap. Rev 1:1, where the same words are employed to describe them. It is curious to find the word servants in this verse, when in chap. Rev 1:1 we had only one servant spoken of. Yet we cannot suppose that under the plural form are included those Christians for whose behoof the revelations had been given. It can only include those to whom they had been made. Perhaps the explanation may be that, as the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy (chap. Rev 19:10), St. John here unites with himself the prophets of God in all past ages. All of them, though in divers portions and by divers manners (Heb 1:1), had had one revelation to proclaim; and, although that revelation had now reached a fulness which it had not previously attained, the last stage in the unfolding of Gods will was only the completing of what had gone before,

Fuente: A Popular Commentary on the New Testament

The prophetical part of this book being now ended, here follows the conclusion, which is managed in a way of dialogue, between Christ, the angel, and the apostle.

Note here, 1. How the divine authority of this book is strongly asserted, and its excellences commended: These sayings are faithful and true: that is, all things contained in this book of prophecies are certain, and infallibly true. The Holy Spirit of God foresaw that this book would be more questioned than other books of holy scripture, therefore he confirms the divine authority of it by an holy angel, and the truth of all things in it, and especially that which relates to the happiness of the saints in heaven, the inhabitants of the New Jerusalem, with a frequent assertion, viz. These sayings are faithful and true. It is added, they shall shortly be done; this is spoken of the beginning of their accomplishment, they shall begin to be fulfilled, and to take effect, and shall receive their full and final accomplishment in due time.

Behold here in Christ’s omnisciency an evident proof of his divinity; he knows all things to come, as well as all things past: and whereas Christ says these things shall shortly be done; we learn, That the time of the church’s suffering is a limited time, it is a short time after which shall follow an eternal deliverance, and a great reward.

Observe farther, That Christ subjoins a promise and assurance of the certainty and suddenness of his coming to judgment, for the support of his church, during the short time of her sufferings and services, Behold, I come quickly; next he pronounces them blessed who keep the word of this book, not only in memory and profession, but in practice and performance.

Observe lastly, The sincerity of St. John, the penman of this book: he leaves here upon record his relapse into that error into which he had fallen before, Rev 19:10. The good man relates his own sin; yea, records his relapse into the same sin, once and again, which, as it discovers that he preferred the glory of God before his own reputation, so it evidently declares that a holy man may possibly relapse into the same sin through inadvertency, or the power of a temptation, and how much it is the duty of every one that thinketh he standeth, to take heed lest he fall.

Of St. John’s weakness in worshipping the angel, see the notes on chap 19.10 as also the angel’s answer, Worship God: as much as if he had said, “Thou mistakest the object of thine adoration, I am a created being, and can accept of no such homage as this, which is peculiarly due to the great Creator.”

Fuente: Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament

This may be the angel talking, though one does also wonder if it might be Christ. The truthfulness of this revelation is first attested to by God. This is the same God that inspired the prophets to speak his word to men in the Old and New Testaments. ( Deu 18:18 ; Isa 1:1-2 ; Jer 1:1-2 ; Act 1:16 ; 1Pe 1:11 ; 2Pe 1:21 ) The word “shortly” is used in Act 12:7 ; Act 22:18 ; Rom 16:20 ; Luk 18:8 ; 1Ti 3:14 and Rev 1:1 . It means quickly, shortly, speedily or soon, according to Thayer. The events of the vision certainly were already in motion at the time of John’s writing. However, it could also be said that they would happen quickly, or suddenly, without warning. Either would be acceptable.

Fuente: Gary Hampton Commentary on Selected Books

Rev 22:6-7. The glory and felicity set forth in the preceding chapter, and continued in the five verses we have just considered, being great above all imagination, certain as the word of prophecy, and lasting without end, must, if duly considered, be a powerful encouragement to us, and persuasive to constancy in the profession and practice of pure Christianity, whatever difficulties or dangers may attend it. What follows, to the end, is the conclusion of the whole book, or a sort of epilogue, which confirms the truth of the prophecies contained in these revelations, shows the importance and use of them, and is well fitted to leave them with strong impressions on the hearts of the readers, to preserve them from complying with any corruptions of the Christian faith and worship, and encourage their constancy in the ways of truth and righteousness. And he said, These sayings are true and faithful All the things which thou hast heard and seen shall be faithfully accomplished in their order, and are infallibly true. Thus the angel ratifies all the forementioned particulars, by a repetition of the same solemn assurance which he had before given, (Rev 19:9; Rev 21:5,) adding that he was commissioned by the same God who had inspired the ancient prophets, to show the things which should shortly be done That is, which would very soon begin to be in part fulfilled, and would, in process of time, be completed. Behold, I come quickly Here the angel speaks, not in his own person, but in the person and character of Christ, whose ambassador and representative he was. Christ is said to come, upon any notable and illustrious manifestation of his providence; and all these are but so many steps to prepare the way for his last coming to judgment. Blessed, happy, is he that keepeth, without adding to or diminishing from, the sayings of the prophecy of this book And that is duly influenced by them. And, as Vitringa devoutly wishes, May the Lord grant this favour to us who have bestowed some labour in meditating thereon, that we also may have some share in this blessing.

Fuente: Joseph Bensons Commentary on the Old and New Testaments

Rev 22:6-21. The Epilogue.The Epilogue consists of the last words, warnings, and exhortations of the angel and the seer.

Rev 22:6. these words: the contents of the book.shortly come to pass: the author thought his prophecies would be speedily fulfilled.

Rev 22:7. I come quickly: I means Christ. The voice of Christ is heard behind the voice of the angel.

Rev 22:8. I, John: cf. Rev 1:9.I fell down: as in Rev 19:10.

Rev 22:10. seal not: contrast the instructions to the seer in Rev 10:4.

Rev 22:13. Alpha and Omega: Rev 1:13*.

Rev 22:14. wash their robes: the AV, following a different Greek text, translates that do his commandments. The Greek phrases vary but little, and a change of two or three letters explains the difference. For the idea involved in RV, cf. Rev 7:14.tree of life: cf. Rev 22:2.

Rev 22:15. dogs: the word was used as a term of contempt. It signified impure or lascivious persons, and was also applied by Jews to Pagans (cf. Php 3:2, Mat 7:6).

Rev 22:16. root . . . David: cf. Rev 5:5.morning star: the phrase is used in Rev 2:28, but in a different sense. The imagery seems to have been suggested by Num 24:17.

Rev 22:17. The answer of the Church to the words of Jesus in Rev 22:16.the bride: i.e. the Church.Come: addressed to Jesus, beseeching Him to return, as in Rev 22:20.he that heareth: i.e. the book read in church or possibly the voice of the Spirit.he that is athirst: here the parallelism of the clauses ceases. Instead of let him say, Come we have Let him come. The reference is to the inquirer and seeker after truth, who cannot yet join in the Churchs prayer for the return of Christ.

Rev 22:18. If any man shall add: cf. the warnings of Deu 4:2; Deu 12:32. We learn from the epistle of Aristeas (311) that it was customary to conclude with such an imprecation. After the conclusion of the translation of the LXX the whole company . . . bade them pronounce a curse in accordance with their custom upon anyone who should make any alteration either by adding or chauging or omitting anything.

Rev 22:19. from the tree of life: cf. Rev 22:2*. This is the reading of the best MSS. The inferior reading, followed by the AV, renders book of life.

Rev 22:20. The Apocalypse ends with the final assurance of the Lord, Yea, I come quickly, and the responsive prayer of the Church, Amen: come, Lord Jesus.

Fuente: Peake’s Commentary on the Bible

22:6 {2} And he said unto me, These sayings [are] faithful and true: and the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angel to shew unto his servants the things which must shortly be done.

(2) This whole book is concluded and made up by a confirmation, and a salutation. The confirmation has three parts: the words of the angel Rev 22:15 , the words of Christ, Rev 22:16-17 and the supplication made by John from divine authority, Rev 22:18-20 . By the speech of the angel this prophecy is confirmed to Rev 22:7-8 , and then he speaks of the use of this book in the verses following. The prophecy is first confirmed by the angel from the nature of it, that it is faithful and true: Secondly, from the nature of the efficient cause, both principal, which is God, and instrumental, which is the angel in this verse. Thirdly, from the promises of God concerning his coming to effect all these things, and concerning our salvation; Rev 22:7 . Fourthly, from the testification of John himself; Rev 22:8 . The rest of the speech of the angel rending to the same end, John interrupted or broke off by his unadvised act of worshipping him, in the same verse, which the angel forbidding, teaches him that adoration must be given not to him, but only to God, as for himself, that he is of such nature and office, as he may not be adored: which thing also was in like manner done; Rev 19:10 .

Fuente: Geneva Bible Notes

 

IV. THE EPILOGUE TO THE BOOK 22:6-21

In this final section of the book John reported concluding information and instructions that God gave him. He did this to comfort and caution his readers and to affirm the authority of this book.

"The concluding paragraphs of the Revelation sum up and press home on the reader’s conscience the foremost practical lessons of the book." [Note: Beasley-Murray, p. 334.]

This section consists of verbal exchanges between an angel and John, and between Jesus and John. Three emphases mark this epilogue. [Note: Thomas, Revelation 8-22, p. 493.] First, this prophecy is genuine (Rev 22:6-9; Rev 22:16; Rev 22:18-19). Second, Jesus will return imminently (Rev 22:6-7; Rev 22:10; Rev 22:12; Rev 22:20). Third, the unfit should beware, and the faithful should take courage (Rev 22:11-12; Rev 22:15; Rev 22:17-19). The whole epilogue is very similar to the first chapter in many ways.

Origin of the prophecy: God and Jesus

Rev 1:1

Rev 22:6

Subject of the prophecy: coming events

Rev 1:1

Rev 22:6

Mediator of the prophecy: an angel

Rev 1:1

Rev 22:6; Rev 22:8; Rev 22:16

Writer of the prophecy: John

Rev 1:1; Rev 1:4; Rev 1:9

Rev 22:8

Genuineness of the prophecy: true prophecy

Rev 1:3

Rev 22:6-7; Rev 22:9-10; Rev 22:18-19

Vehicle of the prophecy: a prophet

Rev 1:1; Rev 1:9-11

Rev 22:8-10

Addressees of the prophecy: bond-servants

Rev 1:1

Rev 22:6

Destination of the prophecy: churches

Rev 1:3; Rev 1:11

Rev 22:16; Rev 22:18

Blessing of the prophecy: for obedience

Rev 1:3

Rev 22:7; Rev 22:12; Rev 22:14

Warning of the prophecy: for unfaithfulness

Rev 1:7

Rev 22:11-12; Rev 22:18-19

Center of the prophecy: Christ

Rev 1:2; Rev 1:5; Rev 1:9

Rev 22:16; Rev 22:18; Rev 22:20

God of the prophecy: Alpha and Omega

Rev 1:17

Rev 22:13

Chief character of the prophecy: God

Rev 1:5; Rev 1:7

Rev 22:12-13; Rev 22:16

Hope of the prophecy: soon return

Rev 1:3; Rev 1:7

Rev 22:7; Rev 22:10; Rev 22:12; Rev 22:20

Fuente: Expository Notes of Dr. Constable (Old and New Testaments)

A. The testimony of the angel 22:6-7

Fuente: Expository Notes of Dr. Constable (Old and New Testaments)

The angel who had been revealing the new creation to John, one of the angels who had the seven bowls (Rev 21:9), continued to speak to him. [Note: Swete, p. 302; Beckwith, p. 772; Robertson, 6:481; Beasley-Murray, p. 334.] He assured John that the things prophesied to happen soon (Rev 4:1 to Rev 22:5), which John had just seen, were faithful and true (cf. Rev 22:6; Dan 8:26). [Note: Alford, 4:746; Swete, p. 302; Lee, 4:837; Beckwith, p. 772; Robertson, 6:481.]

"No book in the Bible has a more pointed attestation, a stronger safeguarding against tampering, or a more urgent recommendation for study and observance than does the Apocalypse, especially in its Epilogue." [Note: Thomas, Revelation 8-22, p. 495.]

The angel proceeded to explain why these words are faithful and true. It was the Lord, the God who inspired the prophets, who had revealed what John had received. The spirits of the prophets are their own human spirits (cf. Rev 19:10). God had sent His angel to reveal these things to His bond-servant John, who was one of the prophets. Specifically, He had revealed things that must happen soon. The purpose of this verse is to stress the authenticity of this revelation and to encourage anticipation of its fulfillment.

This statement reinforces a futuristic interpretation of Revelation. The book deals with events yet future. It also indicates that God intended the reader to understand this book. It is a revelation, not an incomprehensible mystery, even though much of the revelation is symbolic and difficult to understand.

Fuente: Expository Notes of Dr. Constable (Old and New Testaments)

CHAPTER XVIII.

THE EPILOGUE.

Rev 22:6-21.

THE visions of the Seer have closed, and closed with a picture of the final and complete triumph of the Church over all her enemies. No more glorious representation of what her Lord has done for her could be set before us than that contained in the description of the new Jerusalem. Nothing further can be said when we know that in the garden of Paradise Restored into which she is introduced, in the Holy of holies of the Divine Tabernacle planted in the world, she shall eat of the fruit of the tree of life, drink of the water of life, and reign forever and ever. Surely as these visions passed before the eye of St John in the lonely isle of Patmos he would be gladdened with the light of heaven, and would need no more to strengthen him in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ. Was it not too much? The Epilogue of the book assures us that it was not; and that, although the natural eye of man had not seen, nor his ear heard, nor his heart conceived the things that had been spoken of, they had been revealed by the Spirit of God Himself, not one word of whose promises would fail.

“And he said unto me, These words are faithful and true: and the Lord, the God of the spirits of the prophets, sent His angel to show unto His servants the things which must shortly come to pass. And, behold, I come quickly: blessed is he that keepeth the words of the prophecy of this book.

And I John am he that heard and saw these things. And when I heard and saw, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which showed me these things. And he saith unto me, See thou do it not: I am a fellow-servant with thee, and with thy brethren the prophets, and with them which keep the words of this book: worship God (Rev 22:6-9).”

Attention has been already called in this commentary both to that characteristic of St. Johns style as a writer which leads him, at a longer or a shorter interval, to the point from which he started, and to the fact that light is thus frequently thrown on the interpretation of what he says. Every illustration of such a point is therefore not only interesting, but, important; and in the words before us it is illustrated with more than ordinary clearness.

The person introduced with the words He said unto me is not indeed named, but there can be little doubt that he is the angel spoken of in the Prologue as sent to ” signify ” the revelation that was to follow.* (* Rev 1:1)

Again, when the Seer is overwhelmed with what he has seen, and may be said to have almost feared that it was too wonderful for belief, the angel assures him that it was all faithful and true. A similar declaration had been made at Rev 19:9 by the voice which there “came forth from the throne,”1 and likewise at Rev 21:5 by Him “that sitteth on the throne.” The angel therefore who now speaks, like the angel of the Prologue, has the authority of this Divine Being for what he says. It is true that in the following words, which seem to come from the same speaker, the angel must thus be understood to refer to himself in the third person, and not, as we might have expected, in the first, – The Lord sent His angel, not The Lord sent me. But, to say nothing of the fact that “such a method of address is met with in the prophetic style of the Old Testament, it appears to be characteristic of St. John in other passages of his writings. More particularly we mark it in the narrative in the fourth Gospel of the death of Jesus on the Cross: “And he that hath seen hath borne witness, and his witness is true: and he knoweth that he saith true, that ye may believe.”2 (1 Rev 19:5; 2 Joh 19:35. Wider questions than can be here discussed would be opened up by an inquiry how far the same method of explanation may be applied to Joh 17:3)

Again, we read here that the Lord sent His angel to show unto His servants the things which must shortly come to pass; and the statement is the same as that of Rev 1:1.

The next words, And, behold, I come quickly, are probably words of our Lord Himself; but the blessing upon him that keepeth the words of the prophecy of this book again leads the Seer back to the Prologue, where a similar blessing is pronounced.* (* Rev 1:3)

Again, the remembrance of the Prologue is in the Apostles mind when, naming himself, he proceeds, I John am he that heard and saw these things. In precisely the same manner, after the introductory verses of the Prologue, he had named himself as the writer of the book: “John to the seven Churches;” “I John, your brother.”* Then he was about to write; now that he has written, he is the same John whom the Church knew and honoured, and whose consciousness of everything that had passed was undimmed and perfect. This going back upon the Prologue is also sufficient to prove, if proof be thought necessary, that the words “these things” are designed to include, not merely the vision of the new Jerusalem, but all the visions of the book. (* Rev 1:4; Rev 1:9)

That the Seer should have fallen down to worship before the feet of the angel which showed him these things has often caused surprise. He had already done so on a previous occasion,* and had been reproved in words almost exactly similar to those in which he is now addressed: See thou do it not: I am a fellow-servant with thee, and with thy brethren the prophets, and with them which keep the words of this book: worship God. How could he so soon forget the warning? We need not wonder. The thought of the one vision preceding his former mistake might easily be swallowed up by the thought of the whole revelation of which it was a part; and, as the splendor of all that he had witnessed passed once more before his view, he might imagine that the angel by whom it was communicated must be worthy of his worship. His mistake was corrected as before. (* Rev 19:10)

The prophecy is now in the Seers hands, ideally, though not actually, written. He may easily speak of it, therefore, as written, and may relate the instructions which he received regarding it. He does this, and again it will be seen how closely he follows the lines of his Prologue: –

And he saith unto me, Seal not up the words of the prophecy of this book: for the time is at hand. He that is unrighteous, let him do unrighteousness still: and he that is filthy, let him be made filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him do righteousness still: and he that is holy, let him be made holy still. Behold, I come quickly; and My reward is with Me, to render to each man according as his work is. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end. Blessed are they that wash their robes, that they may have the right to come to the tree of life, and may enter in by the gates into the city. Without are the dogs, and the sorcerers, and the fornicators, and the murderers, and the idolaters, and every one that loveth and maketh a lie (Rev 22:10-15).”

To the prophet Daniel it had been said, “But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end.”* The hour had not yet come for the full manifestation of that momentous future upon which he had been commissioned to dwell. The situation of St. John was wholly different, and the hour for winding up the history of this dispensation was about to strike. It was not a time then for sealing up, but for breaking seals, a time for prophecy, for the loudest, clearest, and most urgent proclamation of the truth. “Behold, I come quickly,” had been a moment before the voice of the great Judge. Let the bride for whom He is to come be ready; and, that she may the more promptly be so, let her hear with earnest and immediate attention the words of the prophecy of this book. (* Dan 12:4; Comp. Dan 8:26)

It is by no means easy to say whether the following words, He that is unrighteous, let him do unrighteousness still: and he that is filthy, let him be made filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him do righteousness still: and he that is holy, let him be made holy still, are to be considered as coming from the Apostle or from the angel who has been speaking to him. This difficulty is the same as that experienced in the fourth Gospel at such passages as Joh 3:16; Joh 3:31, where it is nearly impossible to tell the point at which in the one case the words of Jesus, at which in the other the words of the Baptist, end. It would appear as if St. John so sank himself in the person with whom he was occupied at the time that he often gave utterance to thoughts without being able to distinguish between the others and his own. In the present instance it matters little to whom we directly refer the words, whether to St. John, or to the angel, or to Him who speaks by the angel. In any case they contain a striking and solemn view of the relation between the righteous Judge and His creatures, when that relation is looked at in its ultimate, in its final, form. One thing is clear: that the first two clauses cannot be regarded as a summons to the wicked telling them before the Judgment to go on in their wickedness even while the period of their probation lasts. Nor can the second two clauses be regarded as an assurance to the good that there is a point in the actual experience of life at which their perseverance in goodness is secured. The words can only be understood in the light of that idealism which is so characteristic alike of the Apocalypse and of the fourth Gospel. In both books the world of mankind is presented to us in exactly the same light. Men are divided into two great classes: those who are prepared to receive the truth and those who are obstinately opposed to it; and these classes are spoken of as if they had been formed, riot merely after, but before, the work of Christ had tried and proved them. Not indeed that the salvation to be found in Jesus was not designed to be universal, that there was even one member of the human family doomed by eternal and irresistible decree to everlasting death, nor, again, that men are considered as so essentially identified with the two classes to which they respectively belong that they incur no moral responsibility in accepting or rejecting the Redeemer of the world. In that respect St. John occupied the same ground as his fellow-Apostles. Not less than they would he have declared that God willed all men to be saved; and not less than they would he have told them that, if they were not saved, it was because they “loved the darkness rather than the light.”1 Yet, notwithstanding this practical mode in which he would have dealt with men, such is his idealism, such his mode of looking at things in their ultimate, eternal, unchanging aspect, that he constantly presents the two classes as if they were divided from each other by a permanent wall of separation, and as if the work of Christ consisted not so much in bringing the one class over to the other as in making manifest the existing tendencies of each. The light of the one brightens, the darkness of the other deepens, as we proceed; but the light does not become darkness, and the darkness does not become light.2 (1Comp. Joh 3:19; 2See a fuller treatment of this important point by the author in his Lectures on the Revelation of St. John, p. 286, etc.)

Hence, accordingly, the conversion of Israel or of the heathen finds no place in the Apocalypse. The texts supposed to offer such a prospect will not bear the interpretation put upon them. It does not indeed follow that, according to the teaching of this book, neither Israel nor the heathen will be converted. St. John only sees the end in the beginning, and deals, not with the everyday practical, but with the ideal and everlasting, issues of God’s kingdom. Hence, in interpreting the words before us, we must be careful to put into them the exact shade of meaning which the whole spirit and tone of the Apostles writings prove to have been in his mind when they were written. The clauses “He that is unrighteous” and “He that is filthy” are to be understood as “He that has loved and chosen unrighteousness and filthiness:” the clauses “Let him do unrighteousness still” and “Let him be made filthy still” as “Let him sink deeper into the unrighteousness and filthiness which he has loved and chosen.” A principle freely selected by himself is supposed to be in the breast of each, and that principle does not remain fixed and stationary. No principle does. It unfolds or develops itself according to its own nature, rising to greater heights of good if it be good, sinking to greater depths of evil if it be evil. Hence also we are not to imagine that the words under consideration are applicable only to the end, or are the record only of a final judgment They are applicable to the Church and to the world throughout the whole course of their respective histories, and it is at this moment as true as it will ever be that, in so far as the heart and will of a man are really turned to evil or to good, the allegiance he has chosen has the tendency of continued progress towards the triumph of the one or of the other.

In connection with thoughts like these, we see the peculiar propriety of that declaration as to Himself and His purposes next made by the Redeemer: Behold, I come quickly. He comes to wind up the history of the present dispensation. And My reward is with Me, to render to each man according as his work is. He comes to bestow “reward”1 upon His own; and there is no mention of judgment, because for those who are to be rewarded judgment is past and gone. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end, the words again taking us back to the language of the Prologue,2 upon which follows a blessing for such as wash their robes, for those otherwise described in the Prologue as “loosed from their sins in His blood,”3 and in Rev 7:14 as having “washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.” These have the right to come to the tree of life, and they enter in by the gates into the city. A different order might have been expected, for the tree of life grows within the city, and it is the happy inhabitants of the city who eat its fruits. But this is the blessed paradox of faith. It is difficult to say which privilege enjoyed by the believer comes first, and which comes second. Rather may all that he enjoys be looked on as given at once, for the great gift to him is Christ Himself, and in Him everything is included. He is the gate of the city, and as such the way to the tree of life; He is the tree of life, and they who partake of Him have a right to enter into the city and dwell there. Why ask, Which comes first? At one moment we may think that it is one blessing, at another that it is another. The true description of our state is that we are “in Christ Jesus, who was made unto us wisdom from God, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: that, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.”4 (1Comp. Rev 11:18; 2 Rev 1:8; 3 Rev 1:5; 4 1Co 1:30)

To enhance our estimate of the happiness of those who are within the city, there comes next a description of those who are without They are first denoted by the general term the dogs, that animal, as we learn from many passages of Scripture, being to the Jew the emblem of all that was wild, unregulated, unclean, and offensive.1 Then the general, term is subdivided into various classes; and all of them are without, not put out. They were put out when judgment fell upon them. Now they are without; and the door once open to them “is shut.”2 (1Comp. Psa 22:16; Psa 22:20; Mat 7:6; Php 3:2; 2 Comp. Mat 25:10). The last words follow: –

“I Jesus have sent Mine angel to testify unto you these things for the Churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, the bright, the morning star.”

“And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And he that heareth, let him say, Come. And he that is athirst, let him come. He that will, let him take the water of life freely. I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto them, God shall add unto him the plagues which are written in this book: and if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the tree of life, and out of the holy city, which are written in this book. He which testifieth these things saith, Yea: I come quickly. Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.”

“The grace of the Lord Jesus be with the saints. Amen (Rev 22:16-21).”

Once more in these words it will be seen that we return to the Prologue, in the opening words of which we read, “The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him, to show unto His servants; . . . and He sent and signified it by His angel unto His servant John.”1 The glorified Lord now takes up the same words Himself; and, connecting by the name “Jesus” all that He was on earth with all that belongs to His condition in heaven, He declares of the whole revelation contained in the visions of this book that the angel through whom it was communicated had been sent by Him. He Himself had given it – He, even Jesus, – Jesus the Saviour of His people from their sins, the Captain of their salvation, the Joshua who leads them out of the “wilderness” of this world, across the valley of the shadow of death, into that Promised Land which Canaan, with its milk and honey, its vines and olive trees, its rest after long wanderings, and its peace after hard warfare, only faintly pictured to their view. Well is He able to do this, for in Him earth meets heaven, and “the angels of God ascend and descend upon the Son of man.”2 (1 Rev 1:1; 2 Joh 1:51)

First, He is the root and the offspring of David, not the root out of which David springs, as if He would say that He is Davids Lord as well as Davids Son,1 but the “shoot that comes out of the stock of Jesse and the branch out of his roots that bears fruit”2 He is the “Son, who was born of the seed of David according to the flesh,”3 the substance of ancient prophecy, the long-promised and looked-for King. Secondly, He is the bright, the morning star, the star which shines in its greatest brilliancy when the darkness is about to disappear, and that day is about to break of which “the Sun of righteousness, with healing in His wings,” shall be the everlasting light,4 Himself “our Star, our Sun.” Thus He is connected on the one side with earth, on the other with heaven, “Immanuel, God with us,”5 touched with a feeling of our infirmities, mighty to save. “What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us? He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not also with Him freely give us all things? Who shall say anything to the charge of Gods elect? It is God that justified. Who is he that shall condemn? It is Christ Jesus that died, yea rather, that was raised from the dead, who is at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or anguish, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? Even as it is written, (1 Mat 22:45; 2 Isa 11:1; 3 Rom 1:3; 4 Mal 4:2; 5 Mat 1:23)

For Thy sake we are killed all the day long;

We were accounted as sheep for the slaughter.

Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”* (* Rom 8:31-39)

The Saviour had declared, “Behold, I come quickly,” had spoken of the “reward” which He would bring with Him, and had used various images to set forth the happiness and joy which should be the everlasting portion of those for whom He came. These declarations could not fail to awaken in the breast of the Church a longing for His coming, and this longing now finds expression.

The Spirit and the bride say, Come. We are not to think of two separate voices: the voice of the Spirit and the voice of the bride. It is a characteristic of St. Johns style that where there is combined action, action, having both an inward and invisible and an outward and visible side, he often separates the two agencies by which it is produced. Many illustrations of this may be found in his mention of the actions of the Father and the Son, but it will be enough to refer to one more strictly parallel to that met with here. In chap.15 of the fourth Gospel we find Jesus saying to His disciples, “But when the Advocate is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, He shall bear witness of Me; and ye also bear witness, because ye have been with Me from the beginning.” {Joh 15:26-27}. In these words we have not two works of witnessing, the first that of the Advocate, the second that of the disciples. We have only one, – outwardly that of the disciples, inwardly that of the Advocate. In like manner now. The Spirit and the bride do not utter separate calls. The Spirit calls in the bride; the bride calls in the Spirit. The cry “Come” is therefore that of the spiritually enlightened Church as she answers the voice of her Lord and King. Her voice is the echo of His. He says, “I come;” she answers, “Come.” St. John then adds the next clause himself: And let him that heareth say, Come; that is, let him that heareth with the hearing of faith; let him who has made his own the glorious prospects opened up in the visions of this book as to the Lords Second Coming add his individual cry to the cry of the universal Church. To this the Saviour replies, And he that is athirst, let him come. He that will, let him take the water of life freely. The words appear to be addressed, not to the world, but to the Church. He that is “athirst” has already drunk of the living water, but he thirsts for deeper draughts from that river the streams whereof make glad the city of God. To partake more and more largely of these is the believers longing; and fullness of blessing is within his reach. Let him never say, “It is enough.” Let him drink and drink again; let him drink “freely,” until the water that Christ shall give him becomes in him “a fountain of springing water unto eternal life.” {Joh 4:14} The statements and replies contained in these words are those of the glorified Lord, of the Church speaking in the Spirit, and of the individual believer, as they hold converse with one another in that moment of highest rapture when evil has been extinguished, when the struggle is over, when the victory has been gained, and when the Lord of the Church is at the door. He in them and they in Him, what can they do but speak to and answer one another in strains expressive of mutual longing and affection and joy?

Once more the Seer – for it seems to be he that speaks turns to the book which he has written.

In the Prologue he had said, “Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of the prophecy, and keep the things which are written therein.” {Rev 1:3}. In the same spirit he now denounces a woe upon him who adds to it: God shall add unto him the plagues which are written in the book; nor less upon him who takes from it: for God shall take away his part from the tree of life, and out of the holy city, which are written in this book. The book has come from Him who is the faithful and true Witness of God, and it has been written in obedience to His command and under the guidance of His Spirit St. John himself is nothing; Christ is all: and St John knows that the words of his great Master are fulfilled, “He that receiveth you receiveth Me, and he that receiveth Me receiveth Him that sent Me.”1 Therefore may he speak with all authority, for it is not he that speaks, but the Holy Spirit.2 (1 Mat 10:40; 2Comp. Mar 13:11)

Yet once again, before the parting salutation, Christ and the Church interchange their thoughts. The former speaks first: He which testifieth these things saith, Yea, I come quickly. It is the sum and substance of His message to His suffering people, for they can desire or need no more. The “I” is the Lord Himself as He is in glory, not in the feebleness of the flesh, not amidst the sins and sorrows of the world, not with the cup of trembling and astonishment in His hand, but in the unlimited fullness of His Divine power, clothed with the light of His heavenly abode, and anointed with the oil of gladness above His fellows. Especially is the Church told that this revelation is all she needs, because throughout the book she is supposed to be in the midst of trials. To the troubled heart the Apocalypse is given; and by such a heart is it best understood.

Jesus has spoken; and the Church replies, Amen. Come, Lord Jesus. Amen to all that the Lord has promised; Amen to the thought of sin and sorrow banished, of wounded hearts healed, of tears of affliction wiped away, of the sting taken from death and victory from the grave, of darkness dissipated forever, of the light of the eternal day. Surely it cannot come too soon. “Why is His chariot so long in coming? Why tarry the wheels of His chariots?” {Jdg 5:28}. “Yea, I quickly. Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.”

The salutation of the writer to his readers alone remains. It ought to be read differently from its form in the authorized English version, not “The grace o our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all,” but The grace of the Lord Jesus be with the saints. For the saints the book had been written; to them it had been spoken; they alone can keep it. Let no man who is not in Christ imagine that the Revelation of St. John is addressed to him. Let no man imagine that, if he has not found Christ already, he will find Him here. The book will rather perplex and puzzle, more probably offend, him. Only in that union with Christ which brings with it the hatred of sin and the love of holiness, which teaches us that we are “orphans” {Joh 14:18, R.V. (margin)} in a present world, which makes us wait for the manifestation of the kingdom of God as they that wait for the morning, can we enter into the spirit of the Apocalypse, listen to its threatenings without thinking them too severe, or so embrace its promises that they shall heighten rather than lower the tone of our spiritual life. Here, if anywhere, faith and love are the key to knowledge, not knowledge the key to faith and love. It is in the very spirit of the book, therefore, not in a spirit hard, or narrow, or unsympathetic, that it closes with the words, “The grace of the Lord Jesus be with the saints.”

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We have reached the end of this singular, but at the same time most instructive, book of the New Testament. That the principles upon which it has been interpreted should be generally accepted were too much to hope for. Their acceptance, where they are received, must depend mainly upon the consideration that while, as scientific principles, they are thoroughly capable of defense, they give unity to the book and a meaning worthy of that Divine Spirit by whose influence upon the soul of the Apostle it was produced. On no other principles of interpretation does it seem possible to effect this; and the writer of these pages at least is compelled to think that, if they are rejected, there is only one conclusion possible, – that the Apocalypse, however interesting as a literary memorial of the early Christian age, must be regarded as a merely human production, and not entitled to a place in the canon of Scripture. Such a place, however, must in the present state of the argument be vindicated for it; and as an inspired book it has accordingly been treated here, What the reader, therefore, has to consider is whether, though some difficulties may not be completely over come, he can accept in the main the principles upon which, in endeavoring to explain the book, the writer has proceeded. These principles the reader, whoever he be, undoubtedly applies to innumerable passages of Scripture. In so applying them to the prophets of the Old Testament, he follows the example of our Lord and His Apostles; and much of the New Testament itself equally demands their application. There is nothing new in them. All commentators in part apply them. They have only been followed out now with more consistency and uniformity than usual Archdeacon Farrar has said that one of the two questions in New Testament criticism which have acquired new aspects during the last few years is, What is the key to the interpretation of the Apocalypse?* The question is certainly one urgently demanding the Churchs answer, and one which will without doubt be answered in due time, either in the present or some other form. May the Spirit of God guide the Church and her students, and that speedily, into all the truth. (*Expositor, July, 1888, p. 58)

Fuente: Expositors Bible Commentary