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Bible Commentaries

Vincent's Word Studies

Revelation 20

Verse 1

Of the bottomless pit. See on ch. Revelation 9:1. This is to be distinguished from the lake of fire. Compare ver. 10.

Chain [αλυσιν] . See on Mark 5:4. Only here in John's writings.

In his hand [επι] . Lit., upon : resting on or hanging upon.

Verse 2

He laid hold [εκρατησεν] . See on Mark 8:3; Acts 3:11..

The dragon [τον δρακοντα] . See on ch. Revelation 12:3. The word is commonly derived from edrakon, the second aorist tense of derkomai to see clearly, in allusion to the sharp sight of the fabled dragon.

Old [αρχαιον] . See on 1 John 2:7.

The Devil. Note the three epithets : the Old Serpent, the Devil, Satan. See on Matthew 4:1; Luke 10:18.

Verse 3

Sealed. See on John 3:33.

Must [δει] . According to God 's purpose. See on Matthew 16:21; Luke 2:49; Luke 24:26.

Verse 4

Thrones. See on ch. Revelation 2:13.

They sat. All the faithful members of Christ 's Church. Compare they reigned with Christ.

Beheaded [πεπελεκισμενων] . From pelekuv an ax. Only here in the New Testament.

They lived. Equivalent to lived again. Compare ver. 5.

Verse 5

Lived - again [ανεζησαν] . Read ezhsan lived, as in ver. 4

Verse 6

Hath part [εχων μερος] . A phrase peculiar to John as referring to a person. Compare John 13:8.

Second death. See on ch. Revelation 2:11.

Verse 8

Gog and Magog. See Ezekiel 38:39. Compare Genesis 10:2. where Magog appears as a son of Japhet. Magog is a general name for the northern nations, and, according to Ezekiel, Gog is their prince. Josephus says that the descendants of Magog were the Scythians.

Verse 9

On the breadth [επι το πλατος] . Lit., over [επι] . As distinguished from the "four corners" of ver. 8. They overspread the earth.

The camp [την παρεμβολην] . See on castle, Acts 21:34. Encompassing and defending the city. Compare Psalms 78:7.

The beloved city. Compare Psalms 78:68.

From God. Omit.

Verse 12

Before God. Read qronou throne for Qeou God. So Rev., before the throne.

The books [βιβλια] . No article. Read books. Compare Daniel 7:10.

Book of life. See on ch. Revelation 3:5.

Verse 13

The sea. As commonly understood, the sea means the literal sea, and the passage signifies that the dead contained in it shall rise. So Alford. Other interpreters, however, say that it cannot mean the literal sea. Thus Milligan argues that the symbols of the Apocalypse must always be interpreted in the same way. "Symbols," he says, "are a form of speech, and therefore subject to the rules that regulate the interpretation of all speech... The power of that convention which links a certain sense to a certain sound in ordinary terms, is not less binding in the presence than in the absence of metaphor of any kind whatever. Thus when we read in the Apocalypse of 'the sea ' as an emblem of the troubled and sinful nations of the earth, we are bound, unless forbidden by the context, to carry that interpretation through, and to understand the sea of the troubled and sinful world."

Hell [ο αδης] . Rev., Hades. See on Matthew 16:18.

Verse 14

This is the second death. Add even the lake of fire.

Verse 15

And whosoever [ει τις] . Lit., if any. So Rev.

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Bibliographical Information
Vincent, Marvin R. DD. "Commentary on Revelation 20". "Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/vnt/revelation-20.html. Charles Schribner's Sons. New York, USA. 1887.