“To the angel of the church in Ephesus, 1 write the following: 2 “This is the solemn pronouncement of 3 the one who has a firm grasp on 4 the seven stars in his right hand 5 – the one who walks among the seven golden 6 lampstands:
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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]…” The expression τάδε λέγει (tade legei) occurs eight times in the NT, seven of which are in Rev 2-3. “The pronoun is used to add solemnity to the prophetic utterance that follows. …In classical drama, it was used to introduce a new actor to the scene (Smyth, Greek Grammar, 307 [§1241]). But the τάδε λέγει formula in the NT derives from the OT, where it was used to introduce a prophetic utterance (BAGD, s.v. ὅδε, 1)” (ExSyn 328). Thus, the translation “this is the solemn pronouncement of” for τάδε λέγει is very much in keeping with the OT connotations of this expression.
sn The expression This is the solemn pronouncement of reflects an OT idiom. The LXX has the same Greek phrase (τάδε λέγει, tade legei) about 350 times, with nearly 320 of them having “the Lord” (Heb יהוה, Yahweh) as subject. That the author of Revelation would use such an expression seven times with the risen Christ as the speaker may well imply something of Christ’s sovereignty and deity. Cf. also Acts 21:11 in which the Holy Spirit is the speaker of this expression.
4 tn Grk “holds,” but the term (i.e., κρατῶν, kratwn) with an accusative object, along with the context, argues for a sense of firmness. (Cf. ExSyn 132.)
5 sn On seven stars in his right hand see 1:16.
6 tn Grk “lampstands of gold” with the genitive τῶν χρυσῶν (twn cruswn) translated as an attributive genitive.