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have all his saints!”f
that the kings and judges of the right shall have dominion over them earth might be instructed to avoid in the morning ;"& that is, in the the destruction ; might kiss the Son, morning of the resurrection ; when lest he be angry and they perish ! Jesus “ will give him the morning One word respecting Israel. Star.”_See verse 28. This ex
Micah iv, sketching the pression from him who is himself period, shews that when Jehovah “ the bright and morning Star,” shall thus have rebuked strong na" the Resurrection and the Life," tions until he establish peace, he must indicate, that in giving him- will reign in Mount Zion over self, he will then make over to them the outcasts of Israel and the disall the benefits and blessings of the persed of Judah, from henceforth victory which he has achieved for even for ever. To the daughter them in the double nature of “the of Zion shall then come the first Root and Offspring of David;" and dominion, and the kingdom shall upon the enjoyment of which they come to the daughter of Jerusalem.” will enter on that morning when The latter verses of Mic. iv, in re“ 'the Star of Jacob" shall arise and ference to the execution of the judgeshine in his own glory, and they ment, assign it to the daughter of shall “ attain unto the resurrection Zion, after her deliverance from from the dead."*
All this will be in Babylon. I She shall “thresh the virtue of their union with Him who nations, as sheaves of the floor," will then rule those nations, (of when the Lord hath gathered them unconverted Gentiles, as the word is together for that purpose ; and usually translated, agreeably to Old made her horn iron and her hoofs
and New Testament prophecies ;) brass, to beat many of them in (with a rod of iron,” &c.; even as pieces.” Thus, as stated in parallel he received of his Father the pro- prophecies concerning literal Israel, mise with power and authority to He will perform the truth to Jacob do.t Oh, for an ear to hear what and the mercy to Abraham, which the Spirit saith to the churches, 'he sware to the fathers from the
* The Greek is ek verpwv, which is translated from in six other passages, as in 1 Cor. xv, 12: Paul's object (Phil. 3) being, not the general resurrection, for that none can avoid ; but “ the first resurrection," " the better resurrection," " the resurrection of the just,” which he elsewhere describes ; and which we learn from Rev. xx, will take place in the morning of the millennial day; whereas " the rest of the dead live not again till the thousand years are finished.” The xvth Cor. relates only to the dead in Christ who rise “at his coming." " When they put on incorruption and immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.” “Over such the second death hath no power," whereas those raised after the 1000 years will be consigned to the second death.
of See Psalm ii, 7-10; Dan. ii, 35, and vii, 14. It would interrupt our subject to explain that Psalm ; but observe: it gives a short description of the conduct of those nations who have known and despised the Lord's Anointed, until his manifestation as King for their destruction, and for the recompence of those that trust in him. Many of our Lord's parables (as that in Luke xx, 9-18) repeat the same sketch.
If any would apply this to literal Babylon, they are requested to point out when the prophecy has come to pass since Judah’s nearly separate return to Jerusalem : also to mark the sixth verse which agrees with Ezek. xxxvii, 16–22; and the words, “ from henceforth even for ever" shall Jehovah reign over them in mount Zion. This has never been the case hitherto since that return,
days of old.” It is in respect to
was the flickering flame of this lamp them that the Psalms quoted on the of the candlestick, that except its last verses of this chapter of Re- angel, according to the priestly ofvelation, gave their prophecy pri- fice, trimmed it watchfully, it would marily; and that the Lord Jesus go out, as one of the lamps of the describes himself in connection with foolish virgins who took no oil with Jacob and with David.
them. In this case “ the day of the Lord would come as a thief in the
night” upon this church. Compare CHAPTER iii.
Luke xxi, 35, 36 with 1 Thess. V,
2—11, and it will appear, that that Verse 1 presents a decisive testi- day so cometh only to the wicked; mony to Jesus as possessing another for when “they shall say, Peace and incommunicable attribute of Deity safety! sudden destruction cometh -infinity : for who less than infinite upon them,” the spiritually dead. But can he be, who hath the plenitude ye, brethren, who live unto God, beof the infinite and eternal Spirit at ing quickened together with Christ, his disposal, to send forth his in- are not in darkness (unwatchful fluences to the churches, that he through unbelief of this prediction) may baptize whom he will “ with
with that that day should overtake you as the Holy Ghost.”h Thus we see
a thief. How consonant is this with the Spirit proceedeth from the Son; Jesus' words; If therefore thou just as in John xv, 26, he promises wilt not watch, I will come on thee to send him from THE FATHER, as a thief, and thou shalt not know
even the Spirit of truth which what hour I will come upon thee.” proceedeth from the Father.'
In John's writing to the angel of He hath also the seven stars or each church, the Lord evidently administers under his government to
dresses his exhortation to the whole rebuke, chasten and judge. It is of each church; (whose works, whatremarkable, that Jesus commences ever their human reputation, were every one of the seven epistles by not “fulfilled” or “perfect” in his asserting his intimate knowledge of sight;) for in verse 4 he distinguishes the works of each minister and a few even among them, though member ; thus resting his ability but a few, who kept their garments and right to judge upon these unspotted from the world. These attributes, which are essential to his he by grace accounts worthy to walk executing judgement and justice with him in white,-each one that upon the earth, as the righteous overcometh. And what is the vicbranch raised unto David, the tory that overcometh the world ? king that shall reign and prosper, even our faith, which is imputed for Jehovah our righteousness. This righteousness; for the same shall other attribute of deity, his om- be clothed in white raiment;" i.e. niscience, he evinced in all his made white in the blood of the anticipatory manifestations to the Lamb: who therefore promises not fathers; also in the days of his to blot his name out of the book of flesh; and in his subsequent appear- life. ances to Paul and John.i
Verse 5. In this verse there apVerse 2. So nearly extinguished pears to be an allusion to the cus
h John i, 33 ; and xx, 22.
i Compare 2 Chron. xxviii, 9; John ii, 24 ; xxi, 17;
Acts i, 24.
tom of Israel every new year's eve though revealed, they had not exto address one another with this pected because of unbelief. prayer : May you be written in
The Lord further promises, “I ' the book of life for all that is will confess his name before my 'good !” The Jews think that God Father, &c.” This he will do in on that day writes in this book all that day when the sons of God will circumstances concerning them; and be manifested in their resurrection they suppose it sealed on the day of bodies,—the day of adoption, to atonement, (which they call the day wit the redemption of the body.n of judgement,) but not during the May we stand in awe while reintervening ten days of penance. membering the fearful alternative, Before entering the desk the chief that if we deny him before men, rabbi prays, that in reward for fast- he also will deny us before his ing, &c. God would be pleased to Father! write his name and those of his Verse 7. Jesus “the Amen,' 'the brethren in the book of life. Proba- Truth,” assumes to himself the absobly this custom originated in pro- lute perfections of God, viz. holiness mises connecting the recompence of and truth. He at the same time reward at Christ's second advent asserts universal irresistible power, with the atonement offered on his in reference to the dominion profirst advent. Then the sinners be
Then the sinners be- mised to the Son of David, to admit ing destroyed, “ he that is left in into or exclude from his kingdom Zion, every one that is written and shut up in endless separation among the living in Jerusalem shall from God, whom he will. This also be called holy.”j When Daniel's is the prerogative of God.. Jesus people are delivered, it is “ every seems here to appropriate that pre
one that shall be found written in rogative peculiarly to himself, in ' the Book.”k For into (that city) opposition to the subsequent assumpshall in no wise enter any thing that tion of Antichrist. (See on chap. defileth ; &c. but they that are writ- i, 18.) ten in the Lamb's book of life. Verses 8–10. In affirming his Paul speaks of certain elect whose omniscient view, and comparative names he, by the Spirit, knew to be approval of the works of the Philawritten there ;m and the character of delphian church, Jesus graciously such is described in Mal. iii, 16– assures them he has set before them 18. No doubt pious Jews offered an open door.” Some think this prayers in view of these promises, expression signifies, free access, as in answer to which the Redeemer part of God's family, to the throne assures them, He will not blot out
of grace and kingdom of glory. their names, &c. There is another But his Gospel opened the way of remarkable reference in Rev. xvii, 8, admission to both, before all to where the dwellers on earth “ whose
whose whom its sound went forth ; espenames were not written in the book cially to individuals who received its of life from the foundation of the doctrines, in every church and naworld,” i.e. who are not God's tion. Therefore some privilege elect, are described as in amazement
seems intended by which this church at beholding the judgements, which, was distinguished from others.
j Isa. iv, 3.
k Dan, xii, 1. 1 Rev. xxi, 27. m Phil. iv, 3.
1 John iii, 10. 0 Job xi, 10.
n Luke xx, 36, and
Probably his providential dispensa- His and their enemies shall bow betion for its continuance as a church, fore them, and be constrained to acas it remains to this day;* and if this knowledge his distinguishing favor interpretation be correct, it will con- towards them. tinue till his return, glorifying him It remains to be seen, whether by maintaining, though feebly, a this 9th verse refers literally to early christian profession, and persevering Judaizing teachers who had the cirin patient expectation of his fulfilling cumcision of the flesh but not of the the promises of his word ;P or by en- heart, and who are designated by the during persecution with constancy Searcher of hearts as part of the through that faith which is the evi- congregation of Satan's worshipers ; dence of things not seen.
or whether, as the concluding predicman could hinder : and thus they tion argues, it refers to the Mahomkept his word of promise, his truth edan delusion, from which he preand ordinances, and so did not deny served
served the Philadelphian church To confess it, is to con- alone, and which shall be dispelled tend earnestly for the glorious truths before the rays of that truth which it unfolds : but their witness was beams from this as well as distant rather negative than positive. They churches, though yet too feebly to did not boldly confess him unto penetrate the surrounding darkness. martyrdom, nor declare his fame, nor In proportion as this church kept spread his glory, nor even uphold his truth, he engaged to keep it from the churches connected with them falling into this apostacy, which he under John's jurisdiction : alas, for foretold was about to spread over all their short comings! Yet the all that western empire, t to tryits inhabmercifuleye did not despise their little itants and prove whom they served. strength, nor reproach them that his Thus believers are kept from the name was not to them so precious power of delusions and temptations and efficacious, as to those who
in proportion as they exercise faith cherish it as the name that is above in his word of promise.
in his word of promise. How needevery name, the name of healing ful is the word of his patience to a virtue, and refreshing odor, "like a church or person surrounded by ointment poured forth.”-Still it heresies and persecution ! was not "
denied !" Therefore the Verse 11. Did but the mental Saviour adds promise upon promise. eye consider this promise, how
* “ The captivity and ruin of the seven churches was completed by the Ottomans A. D. 1312, and the lords of Ionia and Lydia still trample on them, &c. But Philadelphia distant from the sea ; forgotten by the emperors, and encompassed by Turks, Philadelphia alone is still erect, a column in a scene of ruins. Her sons defended their religion and liberty above 80 years and then capitulated.”—(Gibbon.) These facts prove the locality of the churches addressed.
+ “ All the world,” the Greek is Olkefieyn, inhabited or civilized earth, as each successive empire considered itself! The expression is used Matt. xxiv, 14 ; Luke ii, 1, &c. to denote the Roman empire, or Christendom, the scene of trial, it being the only professing part of the globe, therefore the only one liable to a trial of faith. The temptation was to try them which dwell on the earth ;” it could not have been supposed to affect angels or justified spirits; therefore this expression also denotes (as it usually does in this revelation) the Roman earth. The dominions of the Babylonian empire are called the earth in Ezra i, 2 : sometimes Judea has this extensive appellation. Luke iv, 25; Roman ix, 27-29.
P Ps. cxxx, 5 ; and 1 John ii, 5, with Ps. cyi, 24.
should we love his appearing and caught up to meet the Lord, they stand prepared that no temptation shall ever be with the Lord,” beshould loosen our hold on the hope holding his glory. They will be set before us, nor any false teacher subject to no more conflict or peril wrest from us the crown for which of losing the crown of life, the proas wrestlers we had fought. This mised possession, the reserved incrown is nevertheless Christ's free heritance, the glory then revealed.* gift, 9 and that recompence of re
the Son abideth ever," so his ward” which all saints kept in view.r redeemed "go no more out.' The twenty-four representatives of In many instances, writing the the patriarchal and apostolic church, name on the forehead is a token of as the royal priesthood, wear it of proprietorship. At this day the gold well refined ;s and they ever cast initials of a master's name are someit at the Giver's feet. This crown times branded on the shoulder of a they will lose who yield to apostacy slave ; and probably these texts alor heresy ; for they serve another lude to some similar custom in the master, who may indeed give one of east. I conceive this token of perthe ten crowns or the mitre, until petual consecration, or unalienable that dominion be taken away and possession, in this verse, denotes given to the people of the saints of 1st. the Father's recovery of right the Most High ; but cannot give over his rational creature, in body, the incorruptible “crown of glory soul, and spirit, as on the first creation, that fadeth not away, reserved for by restoration to him in Christ Jesus; you,”t who keep the word of Christ's in whom, by whom, and for whom patience, as her faithful witnesses they live for evermore. 2nd. His in sackcloth, unto the end.
name in the millennial disVerse 12. In the conclusion of pensation, Immanu-EL, (Isa. vii, 14, each epistle the Lord returns to and repeated Rev. xxi, 3, on his reparticularize each person marked by turn to “ dwell with men,”) is therehis all-seeing eye, as having over- fore also inscribed on each ransomed come by grace. The promise now one, as that of their purchaser, the given is, that he shall abide as a Father's name being written as their pillar in the temple of God : for proprietor. Possibly the inscription the whole Church is a building fitly of the name of the city of God, framed together, founded and built new Jerusalem, denotes their being upon Christ Jesus, for a habitation endowed with a right of inheritance of God through the Spirit. Each there, when the name of the city individual is a living stone of it, or shall be, The Lord is there."u a pillar unalterably dedicated to the Thus Psalm lxxxvii, 6, Jehovah glory of his grace, who accepts each ' will count when he reckons up the in the beloved : for some suppose people, that this and that man was in this figure an allusion to the born there,” i. e. has the claim to custom of inscribing memorials of inheritance as a child of adoption victory and honor to the glory of a and grace, and entitled to the privictor or king. That which perfects vileges of the new Jerusalem, the the bliss of saints is, that being once city of the living God.v The
tl Pet. V,
9 Chap. ii, 10 ; 2 Tim. iv, 8. rl Cor. ix, 25 ; Heb. x, 35-37. s Chap. iv, 4, 10.
4. u Ezek. xxxviii, 35. v Heb. xii, 22. * Jeremiah was, in the sense of uncompromising firmness and enduring faithfulness, encouraged to persevere, by Jehovah's likening him to a pillar of iron." (Chap. i, 18, 19.)