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Revelation 7:9-17

Context

7:9 After these things I looked, and here was 1  an enormous crowd that no one could count, made up of persons from every nation, tribe, 2  people, and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb dressed in long white robes, and with palm branches in their hands. 7:10 They were shouting out in a loud voice,

“Salvation belongs to our God, 3 

to the one seated on the throne, and to the Lamb!”

7:11 And all the angels stood 4  there in a circle around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures, and they threw themselves down with their faces to the ground 5  before the throne and worshiped God, 7:12 saying,

“Amen! Praise and glory,

and wisdom and thanksgiving,

and honor and power and strength

be to our God for ever and ever. Amen!”

7:13 Then 6  one of the elders asked 7  me, “These dressed in long white robes – who are they and where have they come from?” 7:14 So 8  I said to him, “My lord, you know the answer.” 9  Then 10  he said to me, “These are the ones who have come out of the great tribulation. They 11  have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb! 7:15 For this reason they are before the throne of God, and they serve 12  him day and night in his temple, and the one seated on the throne will shelter them. 13  7:16 They will never go hungry or be thirsty again, and the sun will not beat down on them, nor any burning heat, 14  7:17 because the Lamb in the middle of the throne will shepherd them and lead them to springs of living water, and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.” 15 

Revelation 14:1-5

Context
An Interlude: The Song of the 144,000

14:1 Then 16  I looked, and here was 17  the Lamb standing on Mount Zion, and with him were one hundred and forty-four thousand, who had his name and his Father’s name written on their foreheads. 14:2 I also heard a sound 18  coming out of heaven like the sound of many waters and like the sound of loud thunder. Now 19  the sound I heard was like that made by harpists playing their harps, 14:3 and they were singing a new song before the throne and before the four living creatures and the elders. No 20  one was able to learn the song except the one hundred and forty-four thousand who had been redeemed from the earth.

14:4 These are the ones who have not defiled themselves 21  with women, for they are virgins. These are the ones who follow the Lamb wherever he goes. These were redeemed from humanity as firstfruits to God and to the Lamb, 14:5 and no lie was found on their lips; 22  they 23  are blameless.

Revelation 15:2-4

Context

15:2 Then 24  I saw something like a sea of glass 25  mixed with fire, and those who had conquered 26  the beast and his image and the number of his name. They were standing 27  by 28  the sea of glass, holding harps given to them by God. 29  15:3 They 30  sang the song of Moses the servant 31  of God and the song of the Lamb: 32 

“Great and astounding are your deeds,

Lord God, the All-Powerful! 33 

Just 34  and true are your ways,

King over the nations! 35 

15:4 Who will not fear you, O Lord,

and glorify 36  your name, because you alone are holy? 37 

All nations 38  will come and worship before you

for your righteous acts 39  have been revealed.”

Revelation 19:1-10

Context

19:1 After these things I heard what sounded like the loud voice of a vast throng in heaven, saying,

“Hallelujah! Salvation and glory and power belong to our God,

19:2 because his judgments are true and just. 40 

For he has judged 41  the great prostitute

who corrupted the earth with her sexual immorality,

and has avenged the blood of his servants 42  poured out by her own hands!” 43 

19:3 Then 44  a second time the crowd shouted, “Hallelujah!” The smoke rises from her forever and ever. 45  19:4 The twenty-four elders and the four living creatures threw themselves to the ground 46  and worshiped God, who was seated on the throne, saying: “Amen! Hallelujah!”

19:5 Then 47  a voice came from the throne, saying:

“Praise our God

all you his servants,

and all you who fear Him,

both the small and the great!”

The Wedding Celebration of the Lamb

19:6 Then 48  I heard what sounded like the voice of a vast throng, like the roar of many waters and like loud crashes of thunder. They were shouting: 49 

“Hallelujah!

For the Lord our God, 50  the All-Powerful, 51  reigns!

19:7 Let us rejoice 52  and exult

and give him glory,

because the wedding celebration of the Lamb has come,

and his bride has made herself ready.

19:8 She was permitted to be dressed in bright, clean, fine linen” 53  (for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints). 54 

19:9 Then 55  the angel 56  said to me, “Write the following: Blessed are those who are invited to the banquet at the wedding celebration of the Lamb!” He also said to me, “These are the true words of God.” 19:10 So 57  I threw myself down 58  at his feet to worship him, but 59  he said, “Do not do this! 60  I am only 61  a fellow servant 62  with you and your brothers 63  who hold to the testimony about 64  Jesus. Worship God, for the testimony about Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.”

1 tn The phrase “and here was” expresses the sense of καὶ ἰδού (kai idou).

2 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated before each of the following categories, since English normally uses a coordinating conjunction only between the last two elements in a series of three or more.

3 tn The dative here has been translated as a dative of possession.

4 tn The verb is pluperfect, but the force is simple past. See ExSyn 586.

5 tn Grk “they fell down on their faces.” BDAG 815 s.v. πίπτω 1.b.α.ב. has “fall down, throw oneself to the ground as a sign of devotion or humility, before high-ranking persons or divine beings.”

6 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “then” to indicate the implied sequence of events within the vision.

7 tn Grk “spoke” or “declared to,” but in the context “asked” reads more naturally in English.

8 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “so” to indicate the implied result of the previous question.

9 tn Though the expression “the answer” is not in the Greek text, it is clearly implied. Direct objects in Greek were frequently omitted when clear from the context.

10 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “then” to indicate the implied sequence of events within the vision.

11 tn Because of the length and complexity of the Greek sentence, a new sentence was started here in the translation. Here καί (kai) has not been translated because of differences between Greek and English style.

12 tn Or “worship.” The word here is λατρεύω (latreuw).

13 tn Grk “will spread his tent over them,” normally an idiom for taking up residence with someone, but when combined with the preposition ἐπί (epi, “over”) the idea is one of extending protection or shelter (BDAG 929 s.v. σκηνόω).

14 tn An allusion to Isa 49:10. The phrase “burning heat” is one word in Greek (καῦμα, kauma) that refers to a burning, intensely-felt heat. See BDAG 536 s.v.

15 sn An allusion to Isa 25:8.

16 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “then” to indicate the implied sequence within the narrative.

17 tn The phrase “and here was” expresses the sense of καὶ ἰδού (kai idou).

18 tn Or “a voice” (cf. Rev 1:15), but since in this context nothing is mentioned as the content of the voice, it is preferable to translate φωνή (fwnh) as “sound” here.

19 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “now” to indicate the introduction of a new topic.

20 tn Grk “elders, and no one.” This is a continuation of the previous sentence in the Greek text, but because of the length and complexity of the sentence a new sentence was started here in the translation.

21 tn The aorist passive verb is rendered as a reflexive (“defiled themselves”) by BDAG 657 s.v. μολύνω 2.

22 tn Grk “in their mouth was not found a lie.”

23 tc Several mss (Ì47 א 1 1006 1611 2351 ÏK pc) have the conjunction “for” (γάρ, gar) here so that the phrase reads: “for they are blameless.” Other important mss (A C P 1854 2053 al lat) lack the word. The shorter reading is to be preferred since the scribes were more likely to make the connection explicit through the addition of “for” than they would have been to omit the conjunction. As it is, the passage without the conjunction makes good sense and evokes a very somber tone.

24 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “then” to indicate the implied sequence within the narrative.

25 sn See Rev 4:6 where the sea of glass was mentioned previously.

26 tn Or “had been victorious over”; traditionally, “had overcome.”

27 tn Grk “of his name, standing.” A new sentence was started here in the translation by supplying the words “They were.”

28 tn Or “on.” The preposition ἐπί (epi) with the accusative case could mean “on, at, by, near”; given the nature of this scene appearing in a vision, it is difficult to know precisely which the author of Revelation intended. See BDAG 363 s.v. ἐπί 1.c.γ, “At, by, near someone or someth.

29 tn Grk “harps of God.” The phrase τοῦ θεοῦ (tou qeou) has been translated as a genitive of agency.

30 tn Here καί (kai) has not been translated.

31 tn See the note on the word “servants” in 1:1.

32 tn Grk “saying.” The participle λέγοντες (legontes) is redundant in contemporary English and has not been translated.

33 tn On this word BDAG 755 s.v. παντοκράτωρ states, “the Almighty, All-Powerful, Omnipotent (One) only of God…() κύριος ὁ θεὸς ὁ π. …Rv 1:8; 4:8; 11:17; 15:3; 16:7; 21:22.”

34 tn Or “righteous,” although the context favors justice as the theme.

35 tc Certain mss (Ì47 א*,2 C 1006 1611 1841 pc) read “ages” (αἰώνων, aiwnwn) instead of “nations” (ἐθνῶν, eqnwn), which itself is supported by several mss (א1 A 051 Ï). The ms evidence seems to be fairly balanced, though αἰώνων has somewhat better support. The replacement of “ages” with “nations” is possibly a scribal attempt to harmonize this verse with the use of “nations” in the following verse. On the other hand, the idea of “nations” fits well with v. 4 and it may be that “ages” is a scribal attempt to assimilate this text to 1 Tim 1:17: “the king of the ages” (βασιλεὺς τῶν αἰώνων, basileu" twn aiwnwn). The decision is a difficult one since both scenarios deal well with the evidence, though the verbal parallel with 1 Tim 1:17 is exact while the parallel with v. 4 is not. The term “king” occurs 17 other times (most occurrences refer to earthly kings) in Revelation and it is not used with either “ages” or “nations” apart from this verse. Probably the reading “nations” should be considered original due to the influence of 1 Tim 1:17.

36 tn Or “and praise.”

sn Jeremiah 10:7 probably stands behind the idea of fearing God, and Psalm 86:9-10 stands behind the ideas of glorifying God, his uniqueness, and the nations coming to worship him. Many other OT passages also speak about the nations “coming to his temple” to worship (Isa 2:2-3, 49:22-23, 66:23-24; Micah 4:2; Zech 8:20-22). See G. K. Beale, Revelation [NIGTC], 796-97.

37 sn Because you alone are holy. In the Greek text the sentence literally reads “because alone holy.” Three points can be made in connection with John’s language here: (1) Omitting the second person, singular verb “you are” lays stress on the attribute of God’s holiness. (2) The juxtaposition of alone with holy stresses the unique nature of God’s holiness and complete “otherness” in relationship to his creation. It is not just moral purity which is involved in the use of the term holy, though it certainly includes that. It is also the pervasive OT idea that although God is deeply involved in the governing of his creation, he is to be regarded as separate and distinct from it. (3) John’s use of the term holy is also intriguing since it is the term ὅσιος (Josios) and not the more common NT term ἅγιος (Jagios). The former term evokes images of Christ’s messianic status in early Christian preaching. Both Peter in Acts 2:27 and Paul in Acts 13:35 apply Psalm 16:10 (LXX) to Jesus, referring to him as the “holy one” (ὅσιος). It is also the key term in Acts 13:34 (Isa 55:3 [LXX]) where it refers to the “holy blessings” (i.e., forgiveness and justification) brought about through Jesus in fulfillment of Davidic promise. Thus, in Rev 15:3-4, when John refers to God as “holy,” using the term ὅσιος in a context where the emphasis is on both God and Christ, there might be an implicit connection between divinity and the Messiah. This is bolstered by the fact that the Lamb is referred to in other contexts as the King of Kings and Lord of Lords (cf. 1:5; 17:14; 19:16 and perhaps 11:15; G. K. Beale, Revelation [NIGTC], 796-97).

38 tn Or “all the Gentiles” (the same Greek word may be translated “Gentiles” or “nations”).

39 tn Or perhaps, “your sentences of condemnation.” On δικαίωμα (dikaiwma) in this context BDAG 249 s.v. 2. states, “righteous deedδι᾿ ἑνὸς δικαιώματος (opp. παράπτωμα) Ro 5:18. – B 1:2 (cp. Wengst, Barnabas-brief 196, n.4); Rv 15:4 (here perh.= ‘sentence of condemnation’ [cp. Pla., Leg. 9, 864e; ins fr. Asia Minor: LBW 41, 2 [κατὰ] τὸ δι[καί]ωμα τὸ κυρω[θέν]= ‘acc. to the sentence which has become valid’]; difft. Wengst, s. above); 19:8.”

40 tn Compare the similar phrase in Rev 16:7.

41 tn Or “has punished.” See BDAG 568 s.v. κρίνω 5.b.α, describing the OT background which involves both the vindication of the innocent and the punishment of the guilty.

42 tn See the note on the word “servants” in 1:1.

43 tn Grk “from her hand” (referring to her responsibility in causing the blood of God’s followers to be shed).

44 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “then” to indicate the implied sequence within the narrative.

45 tn Or “her smoke ascends forever and ever.”

46 tn Grk “creatures fell down.” BDAG 815 s.v. πίπτω 1.b.α.ב. has “fall down, throw oneself to the ground as a sign of devotion or humility, before high-ranking persons or divine beings.”

47 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “then” to indicate the implied sequence within the narrative.

48 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “then” to indicate the implied sequence within the narrative.

49 tn Grk “like the voice of a large crowd…saying.” Because of the complexity of the Greek sentence, a new sentence was started here in the translation by supplying the words “They were.”

50 tc Several mss (א2 P 1611 2053 2344 pc ÏK lat ) read “the Lord our God” (κύριος ὁ θεός ἡμῶν, kurio" Jo qeo" Jhmwn). Other important mss (A 1006 1841 pc), however, omit the “our” (ἡμῶν). Further, certain mss (051 ÏA) omit “Lord” (κύριος), while others (including א*) change the order of the statement to “God our Lord” (ὁ θεός ὁ κύριος ἡμῶν). The expression “the Lord God, the All-Powerful” occurs in 6 other places in Revelation (1:8; 4:8; 11:17; 15:3; 16:7; 21:22) and the pronoun “our” is never used. Scribes familiar with the expression in this book, and especially with the frequent κύριος ὁ θεὸς ὁ παντοκράτωρ (kurio" Jo qeo" Jo pantokratwr; “the Lord God, the All-Powerful”) in the OT Prophets (LXX; cf. Jer 39:19; Hos 12:6; Amos 3:13; 4:13; 5:8, 14, 15, 16, 27; 9:5, 6, 15; Nah 3:5; Zech 10:3), would naturally omit the pronoun. Its presence may have arisen due to liturgical motivations or to conform to the expression “our God” in 19:1, 5, but this seems much less likely than an aversion to using the pronoun here and only here in the Greek Bible in the fuller title κύριος ὁ θεὸς ὁ παντοκράτωρ.

51 tn On this word BDAG 755 s.v. παντοκράτωρ states, “the Almighty, All-Powerful, Omnipotent (One) only of God…() κύριος ὁ θεὸς ὁ π. …Rv 1:8; 4:8; 11:17; 15:3; 16:7; 21:22κύριος ὁ θεὸς ἡμῶν ὁ π. Rv 19:6.”

52 tn This verb and the next two verbs are hortatory subjunctives (giving exhortations).

53 tn On the term translated “fine linen,” BDAG 185 s.v. βύσσινος states, “made of fine linen, subst. τὸ β. fine linen, linen garmentRv 18:12…16; 19:8, 14.”

54 sn This phrase is treated as a parenthetical explanation by the author.

55 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “then” to indicate the implied sequence within the narrative.

56 tn Grk “he”; the referent (the angel) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

57 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “so” to indicate the implied result of the angel’s announcement.

58 tn Grk “I fell down at his feet.” BDAG 815 s.v. πίπτω 1.b.α.ב. has “fall down, throw oneself to the ground as a sign of devotion or humility, before high-ranking persons or divine beings.”

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

60 tn On the elliptical expression ὅρα μή (Jora mh) BDAG 720 s.v. ὁράω B.2 states: “Elliptically…ὅρα μή (sc. ποιήσῃς) watch out! don’t do that! Rv 19:10; 22:9.”

61 tn The lowliness of a slave is emphasized in the Greek text with the emphatic position of σύνδουλος (sundoulo"). The use of “only” helps to bring this nuance out in English.

62 tn Grk “fellow slave.” See the note on the word “servants” in v. 2.

63 tn The Greek term “brother” literally refers to family relationships, but here it is used in a broader sense to connote familial relationships within the family of God (cf. BDAG 18 s.v. ἀδελφός 2.a).

64 tn The genitive ᾿Ιησοῦ (Ihsou) has been translated as an objective genitive here. A subjective genitive, also possible, would produce the meaning “who hold to what Jesus testifies.”



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