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This Chapter opens with an Account of the Joy in Heaven, in the View of the Lord's Triumphs over Antichrist upon Earth. The Church in Heaven celebrates Christ's Marriage with his Church. A blessed and glorious View of Christ. The Beast and false Prophet cast alive into a Lake of Fire burning with Brimstone.
(1) And after these things I heard a great voice of much people in heaven, saying, Alleluia; Salvation, and glory, and honour, and power, unto the Lord our God: (2) For true and righteous are his judgments: for he hath judged the great whore, which did corrupt the earth with her fornication, and hath avenged the blood of his servants at her hand. (3) And again they said, Alleluia. And her smoke rose up forever and ever.
John's attention seems here to have been called off from the view which he had been so much delighted with, in beholding the total overthrow of mystical Babylon, to hear the congratulations of the multitude in heaven, even the Church, who all took part in the triumph. He hears their hymn of praise, and the words of it. He hath recorded it also for the Church. It begins with the blessed word Alleluia, and it ends with the same. The Old Testament Church was remarkable for the use of this word. They generally began and ended all their hymns of praise with it. And to say the truth, it is very sweet. Praise is comely for the righteous.
But what I would yet more particularly desire the Reader to observe, in this triumphal song, of the Church in heaven, is, that in it they recorded the faithfulness of God, in the destruction of antichrist. There is no perfection of God, which the Lord all along commends to his people's notice and regard, more than his faithfulness. Know now, saith the Lord by Moses, that the Lord thy God, the is God, the faithful God! Deuteronomy 7:9 . And as it is to the Lord's glory, when he confirms that faithfulness by his fulfillment of his promises; so is it to the credit of the Lord's people, when they as readily, and as cheerfully acknowledge it.
The Church, in the ruin of the whore, traced her mercies to this one source, God had from the first taught, that no weapon formed against Israel should prosper. Hence, when Rome turned all her weapons upon the Church, to destroy it, and the Lord did as he had said, and threw to the ground the whole power of the Pope; here was a lively proof of God's faithfulness. And the Church sung it. It is blessed to eye God and Christ, in all things!
I desire the Reader to take notice of the strong language made use of by the Church in heaven, in calling this heresy the great whore. And I beg of him no less to regard what is said of the smoke of her furnace, (as if alluding to Sodom and Gomorrah,) which rose up forever and ever. These are grand points.
Let me beg the Reader no less to remark also what is said of God's judgments, in his judging the great whore, namely, that they are true and righteous. Her daring opposition to God's truth, her blasphemies and unjust traffic in selling pardons, which belong only to God to bestow, and her arrogating a right of supremacy in divine things, justly call for divine vengeance. Hence, therefore, her everlasting destruction forms a part, in the great system of what is true and righteous, in the Lord to accomplish. And in the same moment, it is a part of God's justice to shelter and protect all his faithful ones; it is a righteous thing with God to punish his and their enemies, and to repay him that hateth him to his face.
(4) And the four and twenty elders and the four beasts fell down and worshipped God that sat on the throne, saying, Amen; Alleluia. (5) And a voice came out of the throne, saying, Praise our God, all ye his servants, and ye that fear him, both small and great. (6) And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth. (7) Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. (8) And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints. (9) And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God. (10) And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.
I beg the Reader to notice what is said here of a voice, which came out of the throne, saying, praise our God all ye his servants. Now the right apprehension of this voice will serve to throw a light upon what follows hereafter. That this voice could not be the voice of God the Father, Son, or Spirit, is, I think, very evident, for if it had, the words would not have been, praise our God, but praise God. The word our could not upon this occasion have been proper, since it is calling upon others to praise with the voice that called. Moreover, it should seem to have been a voice from among the multitude which sung Alleluia, consequently not the voice of God. Add to these things, when it is said, for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth, this is plainly said of Christ, whose omnipotency hath been now proved in the destruction of the whore, and her total overthrow. And this hymn is but a continuation of the first hymn, at the opening of the chapter, and repeated again and again in those several verses, third and sixth. For whose is salvation but Christ? And to whom all along did John hear the hymn of salvation, and glory, and honor, and power, ascribed? Was it not to him, (said they,) that hath loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood? Revelation 5:9; Revelation 5:9 .
So once more. What are all the ascriptions of honor which are said to be given to him, but to the Person of Christ, because that his marriage is come, and hence the gladness and rejoicing of his people? The very marriage is with Christ, who from everlasting betrothed his Church to himself from the Father's gift, and Who, when from the time-state of the Adam-fall, hath restored her by redemption; he espouseth every individual to himself by regeneration, at their personal call, and here finally brings home his Church to the marriage supper in the Jerusalem church state in heaven. And with respect to the wife making herself ready, the following verse explains what is meant, when it is said, that to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, meaning, that the Lord, who provided the wedding garment of his righteousness, puts it on. So the Church, by the Prophet, sings: He hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels, Isaiah 61:10 .
And, lastly, to add no more, the whole of this account is closed up by the speaker, whoever it was, in those very remarkable words: And he saith unto me, these are the true sayings of God. Consequently, it could not be God or Christ, or the Holy Ghost, but God's messenger, as upon, many instances before, we find John taught by one o r another.
Now, from all these united considerations, nothing can be more plain, than that the words of the following verse is from the same speaker, an angel or messenger, and no more. And though John, for the time in the glorious intelligence he had just received, was so transported, as Cornelius was in the case of Peter, that he fell down to worship him, yet plain enough it is that this was from the Apostle's state of mind, and nothing else. And that neither John took it to be the Person of Christ that was speaking to him, is as certain; for otherwise he would not have said, I have the testimony of Jesus, if he had been Jesus himself.
I have been the more particular than, perhaps, ninety-nine in an hundred would have thought necessary, because some few persons, untaught of God the Holy Ghost, and of a stamp disposed to doubt the Godhead of Christ, have thought this passage rather leans to that opinion. Than which, when attended to, in these striking particulars, nothing can be more foreign. Most evident it is, from beginning to end, that the whole of what we have gone over, hitherto, in this chapter, is an account John received from the ministry of a messenger or angel, and blessed account it is, to the truth as it is in Jesus.
(11) And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. (12) His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself. (13) And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.
Here indeed we have Christ, as is most evident from his double names, faithful and true. His perfections also confirm the glories of his person, for righteousness is the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reins, Isaiah 11:5 . I admire what is said of the many crowns of the Lord Jesus. Who indeed can number them. He hath the essential crown of Godhead. He hath the Personal crown of the God-Man, which was, and is his native right, by virtue of that special character of his, and independent of any single act, by which he hath endeared himself to his people. He hath the Mediatorial crown, both of office and of work, from the infinite merit and dignity of his labors in redemption. And he hath the rightful crown put upon his sacred head, by every individual one of his people, for whom he hath wrought out and accomplished salvation. Oh! the blissful sight of beholding the Lord Jesus, thus wearing his many crowns, and especially when the poor sinner espies among the many, the very one which he had put upon Christ's head, when ascribing to him, as is most justly his due, the sole honor of every poor sinner's salvation.
I must be the Reader to regard with me, the very great blessedness of the name here spoken of, which no man knew but he himself.
I do not presume to speak decidedly upon such a subject. Indeed, what is here said is enough, one should think, to deter any man, and every man, yea, every Angel of Light, from speaking on so mysterious a subject decidedly. For if no man knoweth this name of Jesus written, but he himself, how presumptuous must it be, in any to attempt the discovery. Reader! pause for the moment, and before you go further, ask yourself, whether any higher testimony can be desired, in proof of Christ's Godhead. If none can know his name, who shall know his Person? Who shall declare his generation. Oh! how overwhelming is the testimony to a heart taught of God. Truly, dearest Lord, I behold a blessedness in thy words, used upon another occasion, which bring a peculiar strength of expression, when applied here upon this. No man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whom the Son will reveal him, Matthew 11:27 .
But we must not stop here. Though no man knoweth his name, but he himself, yet his name is subjoined, and it is called, The Word of God. Reader! I do beseech you, ponder it well. We are accustomed to this name in the scripture. John, in the opening of his gospel, calls Christ by this very name, the Word. But we learn here, that though the Lord is called by this name, no man hath, or can have, a full, and clear apprehension of it. I am free to confess, that though I have for many a year past felt a satisfaction in my mind, that the peculiarity of the name, the Word belonging to the Son of God was intended to express, the infinite dignity of his Person; yet, here I rested and concluded; that this implied the whole, as in relation to his Person and dignity. I now behold in it somewhat more. And although this very scripture, which hath been made the means of awakening an increased apprehension in my mind, of its vast importance, while now reading of it, assures me, and in that assurance, satisfies me at the same time, that the full investigation of it baffles all human knowledge, yet I hope shall never more read it, but with increased and increasing solemnity, and profound reverence of thought. Oh! what infinite sublimity, must there be in the name; The Word of God! How in finitely great must He be, to whom it peculiarly and personally belongs. How inconceivably deep and secret must the very name be, who, when he came forth from the invisibility of Jehovah, to make known what revelations of God he hath made, and without whose coming, never could any have been known, still came in a name, that none knoweth but he himself? Precious Lord Jesus! thy name is indeed wonderful! Oh! for grace to be everlastingly contemplating what to all eternity can never be fully known, thou hast a name written that no man knew but thou thyself; and thy name is called, the Word of God.
One word more on this most precious scripture. And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood! I pray the Reader, to pause over this most interesting account of Jesus, and while he ponders the subject, look up with an eye of faith, and behold the Lord in this garment of redemption. Surely the design must have been most gracious. And it may well become every child of God, to search and seek out the cause of such a condescending revelation of himself, in thus appearing to his people.
It is blessed to eye Christ in every name, its every relation, in every office, and in every character. And it is doubly blessed, when the child of God knows him in all, enjoys him in all, and lives upon him in all. When in the council of peace before all worlds, Christ Stood up at the call of his Father, the Head and Husband of his people, the Church was beheld in him, accepted in him, Made holy in him, and one with him to all eternity, for all the purposes, council, will, and pleasure of Jehovah, which should hereafter take place, and in all the circumstances which should follow. Christ then stood forth as the Head and Husband of his Church, his spouse; chosen in him, to be holy and without blame before God in love. But when in the after time-state of the Church, at the fall of Adam, the Church became involved and implicated in that fall; the Church was then to know her Head and Husband in another endearing character, namely, her, Redeemer and Savior. So that from henceforth, redemption became another great and glorious subject, in the view of the Church; and Christ came home recommended and endeared to her affection, both as her Head and Husband, and her Redeemer and Savior, the Lord her righteousness. The Holy Ghost hath blessedly stated both, in that glorious scripture by Paul to the Colossians. And he is the Head of the body, the Church: who is the beginning, the first-born from the dead; that in all things he might have the pre-eminence. For it pleased the Father, that in him should all fulness dwell. Then cometh the second glorious character of the Lord Jesus as Redeemer. And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things to himself; by him I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven, Colossians 1:18-20 . Hence, we have here, the Lord Jesus Christ in his double relation to his Church, both as an Head and Savior. First, as an Head in union, the beginning, and the first-born from the dead, as the founder of the future world, for which the Church hath from everlasting been designed, and by his resurrection, to which Christ hath begotten the Church. And, secondly, as a Savior in redemption, having made peace to all the sins of his body the Church, by the blood of his cross, to reconcile all things to himself. Reader! pause over the wonderful subject, and then again and again, look up and behold him, as John here beheld him, on his white horse, with his many crowns, (and, oh! if you can behold the crown of your own personal salvation, among the number, and in his vesture dipped in blood. Doth not Jesus seem to speak in this apparel. Doth he not seem to say, wherefore do I wear this but to convince my people of the everlasting efficacy of my blood? And do I not still appear in it, to convince them by such a palpable demonstration, that redemption-work is finished, and I am still clothed in my redemption-robes, to tell my poor ones upon earth, this most assured truth, ad to encourage them to come to me, under all their sins and sorrows, and temptations, with full assurance of faith. Reader! were not these among the causes for which Christ so appeared to John? And shall not his Church feel confidence from it, and look to Him as such, whose name is Faithful and True?
(14) And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. (15) And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. (16) And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.
Having looked at Christ, in those most glorious and soul-comforting views in which John beheld him, he now saw the armies which followed him ; and they were also seen on white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. I venture to take for granted, that by the armies which were in heaven, is meant the Church, the Lord's redeemed ones. Their apparel seems to decide this. Not the angels of light. For though elect angels, and preserved by Christ in their holiness; yet, as Christ is here peculiarly seen, from his vesture dipped in blood, as a Redeemer; it should seem, that his followers were the redeemed. Moreover, they are called armies; more, I should conceive, on account of their militant state, than in this place, of their number. For though the word armies implies many, and the Lord's hosts are a great multitude, which no man can number; Revelation 7:9 , yet here the Lord himself is, seen, as on his horse of battle, in righteousness, judging and making war; and consequently, those that follow him, of his armies, are in the field of action.
There is somewhat truly interesting and beautiful, in this description of the Church, in her militant state. They are, as their Lord is, beheld on white horses, to intimate their purity and holiness in Christ. They are going after him, and with him, to battle; but not to an uncertain warfare, for He is crowned with the many crowns of victory, and they are clothed in white robes, to intimate, that they have already washed them white, in the blood of the Lamb. Moreover, they are going after Christ, not before Christ. This scripture saith, they followed him. So that everything is in beautiful correspondence to the leading truths of our most holy faith. All is of Him, and through Him, and by Him. And if we love Him, it is because he hath first loved us.
But though we may, as we are called upon so to do, behold those armies in heaven following Christ, and for a moment glance them as they pass; yet, the one only object to dwell upon in this lovely view, is Jesus himself! And the further description given of Him in this scripture, must of necessity hide every other object from anything more than the mere momentary attention. Reader! do observe how blessedly John speaks of him, when he saith: Out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations; and he shall rule them with a rod of iron. It is a grand feature of character in the Lord Jesus, that while coming forth for the salvation of his chosen, he cometh forth also, for the destruction of his, and their enemies. He saith himself, by the spirit of prophecy, ages before his coming, while in the prospect of it; the day of vengeance is in my heart; and the year of my redeemed is come, Isaiah 63:4 ; Habakkuk 3:13 . And it should be particularly remembered, in this scripture we are now upon, that it is for the destruction of the Anti-Christian powers, the East, and West heresies, as well as the whole works of Satan, and his kingdom, the Lord Jesus is here beheld, as coming forth clothed in armor. The terms used, of a rod of iron, and the smiting them with the sword of his mouth, are well known in scripture, Psalms 2:9 and see John 18:6 with the note in the Commentary.
The treading the wine-press of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God, hath a double aspect; as it concerns the Lord's redeemed ones, and as it concerns the unregenerate. Christ, as his people's Surety, hath trodden the wine-press alone; and of the people there was none with him, Isaiah 63:3 . And who shall describe the weight, and pressure, on the Redeemer's soul, when he made himself an offering for sin, when he bore their sins, and carried their sorrows? But the wine-press of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God hath respect also to the unregenerate; concerning whom the Lord Jesus saith: For I will tread them in mine anger, and trample them in my fury, and their blood shall be sprinkled upon my garments; and I will stain all my raiment, Isaiah 63:3 . No doubt, the day, the awful day of our God, when he comes to take vengeance on his enemies, will be so awfully marked. Those Antichristian powers, both of the East, and West, the devil, and his whole host, yea, all the unregenerate, in every nation and clime, will be trodden by CHRTST, in the wine-press of God's vengeance; and when fully ripened in their iniquity, like the vintage of the vineyard, the Lord will tread them in his anger, and trample them in his fury, stain all his raiment, and bring down their strength to the earth.
One sweet view more. Jesus hath another name on his vesture, and on his thigh, which all his redeemed cannot but delight to read, and know him by; namely, KING of kings, and Lord of lords. Yes! Reader! the Lord Jesus Christ hath this glorious title in common with the Father, and the Holy Ghost; and specially and personally so, as God-Man Mediator. There can be nothing more sweet and refreshing to the Church of God, than the contemplation of this distinction of character, both as relating to the nature, and essence of the Godhead; and as relating to the personal glory, and dignity, of the God-Man Christ Jesus. I have, in many parts of this humble work, this Poor Man's Commentary, dwelt upon both; as the several subjects leading to them, from the several parts of the holy scriptures, have presented them before us. But, as I am now drawing towards the close of the whole sacred volume, I would crave my Reader's indulgence once more, to drop a word or two on both, the longer I live, the more I am convinced, of the present awful, Christ-despising generation. And what more trembling times are at hand, I know not; but, from the complexion of things now before us, there appears a sad, sad prospect. Before the final overthrow of those antichristian powers, which this book of God clearly predicts, and of which, this very Chapter sounds the glorious triumph; we must expect, from those scriptures, as the last struggle of the beast, and the false prophet, and the dragon, the most violent oppositions; yea, the two witnesses of our God and Savior, are to lie dead, under their violence, in the great city of the whore, which spiritually is called Sodom, and Egypt, three days and half, Revelation 11:10; Revelation 11:10 . I hope, therefore, one short view more in relation to this glorious title of our glorious God, our Savior, both as it belongs to him, as God, in common with the Father and the Holy Ghost; and in his own personal, and Mediator-character, as God-Man, will neither be considered unnecessary, nor found unprofitable, under the Lord's teaching.
Of the divine unity, of one God in essence, the whole scriptures are full. Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God is One Lord, Deuteronomy 6:4 . All, and every part of revelation, confirms the glorious truth. There is, there can be but one God. For as all the divine attributes and perfections are, in the highest possible extent, illimitable, and immense; so of necessity, the Lord God Almighty, fills all space, and is Omnipresent, and of an Eternal ubiquity. So that, the very idea, of another God, is excluded; for this immensity, and this ubiquity, would be broken in upon. A thing impossible.
The scriptures of God, which declare this first and leading truth, do no less at the same time declare, the existence of this first, great, and eternal cause, as existing in a threefold character of Persons, known and distinguished by distinct names, as revealed to the Church: Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. They are called the Holy Three, which bear record in heaven; the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these Three are One. 1 John 5:7 .
And here, before we go further, I stop the Reader humbly to propose one short and plain question. Supposing that we had never received this testimony from the scriptures; and supposing, for the first thine, that you, or I, were Made acquainted with the revelation of the Being of God; should we not expect to find, that the nature of his Being and existence, when made known, would be in a way of perfect distinction, from all his creatures? I say, should we not be inclined to think, that when any discovery was made to us, concerning the nature, and Being of God, we should expect to find him to differ wholly from our own? Here then it is. The testimony of Scripture on this grand point is, that the Lord Jehovah doth exist, in the eternity of his nature and Being, in a way totally distinct; and distinguished from, all his creatures; and that, in the nature and essence of the Godhead, there are three distinct personalities, of equal glory, power, wisdom, and existence; Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Reader! what a mercy is it, to every child of God in relation to this great truth, that over and above this blessed scripture testimony, he hath a personal knowledge and apprehension of each glorious Person, in the revelations made to himself; in the Father's love, the Son's grace, and the Holy Ghost's fellowship?
But, to return. The holy scriptures, which declare the unity of the divine essence, and the existence of the Three PER Son S in that Unity, have as graciously condescended, and in a variety of parts in the divine word, to call each of them by same distinction of character and title, to make known to the Church, their Oneness in Being, in honor, in dignity, worship, power, and in short, all the glorious prerogatives of God. Hence also, in all the departments of nature, providence, grace, and glory, we are taught, that each glorious Person hath taken part, and doth take part; and both in creation, redemption, sanctification, and all that concerns the Church; in the life that now is, or that which is to come; the whole Persons have come forward, and do come forward, to the Church in Christ in Him, as the only possible way, or channel of communication; to teach the Church, from whom jointly, and severally, their Mercies flow; and to whom again, in and through Christ, their endless praises are to be returned, both here and hereafter. I stay not to quote, or even in this place to refer to the numerous scriptures which are express to this purpose in proof. In numberless parts of this Work, I have already done it; and I hope, most plain and satisfactory to everyone taught of God. I am only now bringing forward, once more, the blessed subject itself, before I conclude my Poor Man's Commentary.
Here, however, let the godly Reader pause again, find, as he reads his Bible, let him recollect, if he can, the very many sweet and gracious passages, the Word of God abounds with, in proof of the Personality of the Holy Three in One. How often do we find them conversing together? Genesis 1:26 ; Isaiah 6:8 ; John 17:0 throughout; Isaiah 49:0 throughout; John 12:28 . How often speaking of their delight in each other, Proverbs 8:22 to the end; Matthew 3:17 ; John 17:23-24 ; Revelation 3:21 ; John 16:15; John 16:15 . These are precious things; and precious scriptures in the confirmation of them! Let the godly Reader be very cheery of them.
One word more. The several titles, honors, and dignities, by which the Holy Three in One are known in scripture, in common one with the other, are all so many further confirmations, and of the most blessed nature, to this divine doctrine. How often do we meet with ascriptions of praise, to each, and to all; as to the blessed, and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords! And to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, is ascribed glory, both to the Father, Son, and Spirit, 1 Timothy 6:15-16; 1 Timothy 6:15-16 . Compare 1 Peter 5:11 with 2 Peter 3:18 and Jude 1:25 . Compare Isaiah 6:3 with Revelation 4:8 and Revelation 1:4 .
And the same we find personally offered to the Person of Christ, as Mediator; not only in this text before us, but in every part of the word of God. In this very book of Revelation, to go no further, we have many instances, Revelation 5:9 to the end. Revelation 1:5-7 . Reader! look at both. Bless God the Spirit, for his gracious testimonies to the whole, in his word of truth; and pray for his teachings, to make the whole profitable.
(17) And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God; (18) That ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great.
It is not easy to conjecture, who is meant by this Angel which John saw, standing in the sun. But he could be no other than a servant. For the sun is the emblem of Christ. And it could not be said, that Christ was standing in himself. I should conceive, that as he was calling to the fowls of heaven to come to the great supper of God, it might be even a very humble servant in the ministry; similar to what is said of the servants in the Gospel, sent out to call in the poor, and maimed, and halt, and blind, to the feast of the word of God, Luke 14:21 . But be who it may, one thing is worth regarding. He is said to be standing in the sun. By which we may, without violence to the expression, interpret it, as standing in Christ and his righteousness, Malachi 4:2 . Here every Preacher of Christ stands. He is open like the sun; and he preacheth Christ, and Christ only. And his call of invitation to the supper, is not a call to ordinances, but to triumphs. Let the Reader remember, that this which is represented here, is the total overthrow of Pope and Prelate, Mahomet and Devil. Hence, the people of God are called upon to rejoice over them. It is called the supper of the great God, even Jesus; for these are his triumphs. He it was, who was just before seen by John, upon his white horse, with his many crowns, and in his vesture dipped in blood, and his armies following him to victory. Hence, therefore, as a mighty Conqueror, the battle being over, he makes a feast, like all Eastern Princes, for his nobles and princes of the provinces; that is, al, Christ's redeemed family, whom he hath made kings and priests to God and the Father, and invites them to the supper; and where he displays the riches of his glorious kingdom, and the honor of his excellent majesty, not many days, no, not an hundred and fourscore days, for these would soon expire, but through a whole eternity, where Jesus shall be glorified in his saints, and they made completely blessed in him forever and ever, Esther 1:3-5 .
Let the Reader not forget, that it forms an interesting part in the whole plan of redemption, when Christ brings home his chosen, that be hath also a complete triumph over his enemies. It is a grand conclusion to the whole. And the Church is so highly interested in it, that one of the Covenant promises, in the charter of grace, runs in these words: when the wicked are cut off thou shalt see it, Psalms 37:34 . Oh! it is a blessed part in redemption, that Satan shall not only be brought down, but bruised by the God of peace under our feet, Romans 16:20 .
The battle at Armageddon will bring forth before the Church, the everlasting triumph of the Church over the whore and the false prophet; and, if any pagan powers, aided by the devil, are brought into this war, to fight against Christ; their destruction is sure. And in seeing their utter destruction; this in prophetical language is, to eat the flesh of kings and captains, of mighty men and horses, both bond and free, both small and great.
(19) And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army. (20) And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone. (21) And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh.
What a blessed scripture is here! So then at last the beast is caught, and the false prophet; and ere long the devil will be taken also. The Holy Ghost had taught the Church to expect this, in relation to the whore. 2 Thessalonians 2:8-12 . And the Church of God will shout aloud, and say, in the language of the Church of old: So let all thine enemies perish, O Lord, but let them that love him be, as the sun, when he goeth forth in his might, Judges 5:31 .
Oh! the raptures, the joy, the unspeakable felicity, which will break out in heaven, when, like John in vision, the Church of God will hear in reality, that great voice, of much people, saying Allelujah, salvation, and glory, and honor, and power, unto the Lord our God! The imagination of the human mind cannot conceive the triumphs of the Church, when the Lord shall bring home the re deemed of his people; and the Lord shall have avenged the blood of his servants at the hands of the great whore, who, for so many ages and generations, hath corrupted the earth with the multitude of her fornications!
Oh! ye Church of my God, ye followers of God, and the Lamb! who shall number up your mercies, or speak the endless felicity of your happy state, when safely brought home from all the exercises of sin and sorrow, and are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb! Ye servants of the Lord! see that ye are arrayed with the fine linen, clean and white, even the righteousness of saints, which is Jesus's robe of salvation! See that God, who provides it for you, puts it on. No other can gain admission to the table of the Lord, either here in grace, or hereafter in glory! Oh! for the being so clad, that all the redeemed of the Lord may exult in the language of the Church of old, and say: / will greatly rejoice in the Lord; my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation; he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels!
But, Oh! for grace to behold my God and Savior as John saw him, riding on his white horse, in his glorious characters of faithful and true, and in righteousness judging, and making war. Lord! give me to see thee, with thy many crowns. And, oh! for that very one, which thou hast enabled me to put upon thy sacred head, when in the day thou madest me willing to be saved in thine own way, and the knee of my heart bowed before thee; and I cried out, Jesus hath redeemed me, and saved me, and washed me from all my sins, in his blood! Lord! let me daily behold thee, in thy vesture dipped in blood! let me daily read, and know thy name, the Word of God. Let me, to the last moment of my life upon earth, till I fall before thy throne in glory, hail thee, my King, and my God yea, King of kings, and Lord of lords! Oh! the day, the blissful, happy wedding day, when Jesus will take me home, and while the beast, and the false prophet fall to rise no more, but sink in the lake of fire; I shall, through sovereign grace, behold my God and Savior as he is, and dwell with him forever. Amen.
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Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Revelation 19". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/
the Week of Proper 25 / Ordinary 30