1:4 From John, 1 to the seven churches that are in the province of Asia: 2 Grace and peace to you 3 from “he who is,” 4 and who was, and who is still to come, 5 and from the seven spirits who are before his throne,
“This is the solemn pronouncement of 8 the one who holds 9 the seven spirits of God and the seven stars: ‘I know your deeds, that you have a reputation 10 that you are alive, but 11 in reality 12 you are dead.
4:5 From 13 the throne came out flashes of lightning and roaring 14 and crashes of thunder. Seven flaming torches, which are the seven spirits of God, 15 were burning in front of the throne
1 tn Grk “John.” The word “From” is not in the Greek text, but has been supplied to indicate the sender of the letter.
2 tn Grk “Asia”; in the NT this always refers to the Roman province of Asia, made up of about one-third of the west and southwest end of modern Asia Minor. Asia lay to the west of the region of Phrygia and Galatia. The words “the province of” are supplied to indicate to the modern reader that this does not refer to the continent of Asia.
3 tn It is probable that the ὑμῖν (Jumin) applies to both elements of the greeting, i.e., to both grace and peace.
4 tc The earliest and best
5 tn BDAG 106 s.v. ἀπό 5.d states: “The expr. εἰρήνη ἀπὸ ‘ὁ ὢν καὶ ὁ ἦν καὶ ὁ ἐρχόμενος’ Rv 1:4 is quite extraordinary. It may be an interpretation of the name Yahweh already current, or an attempt to show reverence for the divine name by preserving it unchanged, or simply one more of the grammatical peculiarities so frequent in Rv.”
6 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated due to differences between Greek and English style.
7 tn The phrase “the following” after “write” is supplied to clarify that what follows is the content of what is to be written.
sn The expression This is the solemn pronouncement of reflects an OT idiom. See the note on this phrase in 2:1.
10 tn Grk “a name.”
11 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “but” to indicate the contrast present in this context.
12 tn The prepositional phrase “in reality” is supplied in the translation to make explicit the idea that their being alive was only an illusion.
13 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated because of differences between Greek and English style.
14 tn Or “sounds,” “voices.” It is not entirely clear what this refers to. BDAG 1071 s.v. φωνή 1 states, “In Rv we have ἀστραπαὶ καὶ φωναὶ καὶ βρονταί (cp. Ex 19:16) 4:5; 8:5; 11:19; 16:18 (are certain other sounds in nature thought of here in addition to thunder, as e.g. the roar of the storm?…).”
15 sn Some interpret the seven spirits of God as angelic beings, while others see them as a reference to the sevenfold ministry of the Holy Spirit.