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Revelation 3:1-6

Context
To the Church in Sardis

3:1 “To 1  the angel of the church in Sardis write the following: 2 

“This is the solemn pronouncement of 3  the one who holds 4  the seven spirits of God and the seven stars: ‘I know your deeds, that you have a reputation 5  that you are alive, but 6  in reality 7  you are dead. 3:2 Wake up then, and strengthen what remains that was about 8  to die, because I have not found your deeds complete 9  in the sight 10  of my God. 3:3 Therefore, remember what you received and heard, 11  and obey it, 12  and repent. If you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will never 13  know at what hour I will come against 14  you. 3:4 But you have a few individuals 15  in Sardis who have not stained 16  their clothes, and they will walk with me dressed 17  in white, because they are worthy. 3:5 The one who conquers 18  will be dressed like them 19  in white clothing, 20  and I will never 21  erase 22  his name from the book of life, but 23  will declare 24  his name before my Father and before his angels. 3:6 The one who has an ear had better hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’

1 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated due to differences between Greek and English style.

2 tn The phrase “the following” after “write” is supplied to clarify that what follows is the content of what is to be written.

3 tn Grk “These things says [the One]…” See the note on the phrase “this is the solemn pronouncement of” in 2:1.

sn The expression This is the solemn pronouncement of reflects an OT idiom. See the note on this phrase in 2:1.

4 tn Grk “who has” (cf. 1:16).

5 tn Grk “a name.”

6 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “but” to indicate the contrast present in this context.

7 tn The prepositional phrase “in reality” is supplied in the translation to make explicit the idea that their being alive was only an illusion.

8 tn The verb ἔμελλον (emellon) is in the imperfect tense.

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

10 tn Or “in the judgment.” BDAG 342 s.v. ἐνώπιον 3 states, “in the opinion/judgment of…As a rule…of θεός or κύριος; so after…πεπληρωμένος Rv 3:2.”

11 tn The expression πῶς εἴληφας καὶ ἤκουσας (pw" eilhfa" kai hkousa") probably refers to the initial instruction in the Christian life they had received and been taught; this included doctrine and ethical teaching.

12 tn Grk “keep it,” in the sense of obeying what they had initially been taught.

13 tn The negation here is with οὐ μή (ou mh, the strongest possible form of negation in Koine Greek).

14 tn Or “come on.”

15 tn Grk “a few names”; here ὄνομα (onoma) is used by figurative extension to mean “person” or “people”; according to L&N 9.19 there is “the possible implication of existence or relevance as individuals.”

16 tn Or “soiled” (so NAB, NRSV, NIV); NCV “have kept their clothes unstained”; CEV “have not dirtied your clothes with sin.”

17 tn The word “dressed” is not in the Greek text, but is implied.

18 tn Or “who overcomes.”

19 tn Grk “thus.”

20 tn Or “white robes.”

21 tn The negation here is with οὐ μή (ou mh), the strongest possible form of negation in Koine Greek.

22 tn Or “will never wipe out.”

23 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “but” to indicate the contrast present in this context.

24 tn Grk “will confess.”



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