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Revelation 21:18-21

Context
21:18 The city’s 1  wall is made 2  of jasper and the city is pure gold, like transparent glass. 3  21:19 The foundations of the city’s wall are decorated 4  with every kind of precious stone. The first foundation is jasper, the second sapphire, the third agate, 5  the fourth emerald, 21:20 the fifth onyx, 6  the sixth carnelian, 7  the seventh chrysolite, 8  the eighth beryl, 9  the ninth topaz, the tenth chrysoprase, 10  the eleventh jacinth, 11  and the twelfth amethyst. 21:21 And the twelve gates are twelve pearls – each one of the gates is made from just one pearl! The 12  main street 13  of the city is pure gold, like transparent glass.

1 tn Grk “and its wall”; the referent of the pronoun (the city) has been specified in the translation for clarity. Here καί (kai) has not been translated because of differences between Greek and English style.

2 tn The phrase ἡ ἐνδώμησις τοῦ τείχους (Jh endwmhsi" tou teicou") is difficult to translate precisely. BDAG 334 s.v. ἐνδώμησις states, “primary mng. ‘interior structure’; in our lit. prob.=construction, hence material τοῦ τείχους Rv 21:18.” The phrase could then be translated, “the foundation of the city wall was jasper” or “the material used for the wall of the city was jasper.” The latter alternative has been used in the translation because the text goes on to discuss the foundation in 21:19 (using the term θεμέλιος [qemelios]), which is somewhat redundant if the foundation is mentioned here.

3 tn Or “transparent crystal.” See L&N 6.222, which notes the emphasis is on transparency here. The same Greek word, καθαρός (kaqaros), means both “pure” (referring to the gold) and “transparent” (referring to the glass).

4 tn The perfect participle here has been translated as an intensive (resultative) perfect.

5 sn Agate (also called chalcedony) is a semiprecious stone usually milky or gray in color (L&N 2.32).

6 sn Onyx (also called sardonyx) is a semiprecious stone that comes in various colors (L&N 2.35).

7 sn Carnelian is a semiprecious gemstone, usually red in color (L&N 2.36).

8 sn Chrysolite refers to either quartz or topaz, golden yellow in color (L&N 2.37).

9 sn Beryl is a semiprecious stone, usually blue-green or green in color (L&N 2.38).

10 sn Chrysoprase is a greenish type of quartz (L&N 2.40).

11 sn Jacinth is a semiprecious stone, probably blue in color (also called “hyacinth,” but that translation is not used here because of possible confusion with the flower of the same name). See L&N 2.41.

12 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated because of differences between Greek and English style.

13 tn The Greek word πλατεῖα (plateia) refers to a major (broad) street (L&N 1.103).



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