Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Revelation 3:12

He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God, and he will not go out from it anymore; and I will write on him the name of My God, and the name of the city of My God, the new Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God, and My new name.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Decision;   God Continued...;   Jesus Continued;   Perseverance;   Philadelphia;   Pillar;   Righteous;   Temple;   War;   Scofield Reference Index - Kingdom;   Thompson Chain Reference - Battle of Life;   Name;   New;   Overcomers;   Pillars, Memorial;   Promises, Divine;   Saints;   The Topic Concordance - Jerusalem;   Name;   Newness;   Victory/overcoming;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Jerusalem;   Pillars;   Titles and Names of Saints;   Warfare of Saints;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Jerusalem;   Pillar;   Temple;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Philadelphia;   Son of man;   Zion;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Building;   Christians, Names of;   God, Name of;   New Command;   New Heavens and a New Earth;   New Jerusalem;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Heaven;   Philadelphia;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Adultery;   High Priest;   Manoah;   Marriage;   Name;   Philadelphia;   Pillars;   Revelation of John, the;   Zacchaeus;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Asia Minor, Cities of;   Keys of the Kingdom;   Letter Form and Function;   Revelation, the Book of;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Asia;   Ethics;   Magi;   Philadelphia;   Pillar;   Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - God;   New Jerusalem;   Philadelphia ;   Pillar;   Sanctify, Sanctification;   Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs;   Type;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Boaz ;   Pillar;   Temple, the;   The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary - City;   Jerusalem;   Peter;   Sepharvaim;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Philadelphia;   Smith Bible Dictionary - Philadel'phia,;   Wilson's Dictionary of Bible Types - Mark;   Pillar;   Spot;   Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary - Jerusalem;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - New;   Parousia;   Pillar;   Revelation of John:;   Sardis;  
Devotionals:
Daily Light on the Daily Path - Devotion for March 18;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

A pillar in the temple - There is probably all allusion here to the two pillars in the temple of Jerusalem, called Jachin and Boaz, stability and strength. The Church is the temple; Christ is the foundation on which it is built; and his ministers are the Pillars by which, under him, it is adorned and supported. St. Paul has the same allusions, Galatians 2:9.

I will write upon him the name of my God - That is, I will make him a priest unto myself. The priest had written on his forehead ליהוה קודש kodesh laihovah, "Holiness to the Lord."

And the name of the city of my God - As the high priest had on his breastplate the names of the twelve tribes engraved, and these constituted the city or Church of God; Christ here promises that in place of them the twelve apostles, representing the Christian Church, shall be written, which is called the New Jerusalem, and which God has adopted in place of the twelve Jewish tribes.

My new name - The Savior of All; the light that lightens the Gentiles; the Christ; the Anointed One; the only Governor of his Church; and the Redeemer of All mankind.

There is here an intimation that the Christian Church is to endure for ever; and the Christian ministry to last as long as time endures: He shall go no more out for ever.

Epistle to the Church of the Laodiceans

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Bibliographical Information
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/revelation-3.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

Him that overcometh - See the notes on Revelation 2:7.

Will make a pillar in the temple of my God - See the introductory remarks to this epistle. The promised reward of faithfulness here is, that he who was victorious would be honored as if he were a pillar or column in the temple of God. Such a pillar or column was partly for ornament, and partly for support; and the idea here is, that in that temple he would contribute to its beauty and the justness of its proportions, and would see the same time be honored as if he were a pillar which was necessary for the support of the temple. It is not uncommon in the New Testament to represent the church as a temple, and Christians as parts of it. See 1 Corinthians 3:16-17; 1 Corinthians 6:19; 2 Corinthians 6:16; 1 Peter 2:5.

And he shall go no more out - He shall be permanent as a part of that spiritual temple. The idea of “going out” does not properly belong to a pillar; but the speaker here has in his mind the man, though represented as a column. The description of some parts would be applicable more directly to a pillar; in others more properly to a man. Compare John 6:37; John 10:28-29; 1 John 2:19, for an illustration of the sentiment here. The main truth here is, that if we reach heaven, our happiness will be secure forever. We shall have the most absolute certainty that the welfare of the soul will no more be perilled; that we shall never be in danger of falling into temptation; that no artful foe shall ever have power to alienate our affections from God; that we shall never die. Though we may change our place, and may roam from world to world until we shall have surveyed all the wonders of creation, yet we shall never “go out of the temple of God.” Compare the notes on John 14:2. When we reach the heavenly world our conflicts will be over, our doubts at an end. As soon as we cross the threshold we shall be greeted with the assurance, “he shall go no more out forever.” That is to be our eternal abode, and whatever of joy, or felicity, or glory, that bright world can furnish, is to be ours. Happy moment I when, emerging from a world of danger and of doubt, the soul shall settle down into the calmness and peace of that state where there is the assurance of God himself that that world of bliss is to be its eternal abode!

And I will write upon him the name of my God - Considered as a pillar or column in the temple. The name of God would be conspicuously recorded on it to show that he belonged to God. The allusion is to a public edifice, on the columns of which the names of distinguished and honored persons were recorded; that is, where there is a public testimonial of the respect in which one whose name was thus recorded was held. The honor thus conferred on him “who should overcome” would be as great as if the name of that God whom he served, and whose favor and friendship he enjoyed, were inscribed on him in some conspicuous manner. The meaning is, that he would be known and recognized as belonging to God; the God of the Redeemer himself - indicated by the phrase, “the name of my God.”

And the name of the city of my God - That is, indicating that he belongs to that city, or that the New Jerusalem is the city of his habitation. The idea would seem to be, that in this world, and in. all worlds wherever he goes and wherever he abides, he will be recognized as belonging to that holy city; as enjoying the rights and immunities of such a citizen.

Which is New Jerusalem - Jerusalem was the place where the temple was reared, and where the worship of God was celebrated. It thus came to be synonymous with the church - the dwelling-place of God on earth.

Which cometh down out of heaven from my God - See this explained in the notes on Revelation 21:2 ff. Of course this must be a figurative representation, but the idea is plain. It is:

(1)that the church is, in accordance with settled Scripture language, represented as a city - the abode of God on earth.

(2)that is, instead of being built here, or having an earthly origin, it has its origin in heaven.

It is as if it had been constructed there, and then sent down to earth ready formed. The type, the form, the whole structure is heavenly. It is a departure from all proper laws of interpretation to explain this literally, as if a city should be actually let down from heaven; and equally so to infer from this passage, and the others of similar import in this book, that a city will be literally reared for the residence of the saints. If the passage proves anything on either of these points, it is, that a great and splendid city, such as that described in Revelation 2:17. The reward, therefore, promised here is, that he who, by persevering fidelity, showed that he was a real friend of the Saviour, would be honored with a permanent abode in the holy city of his habitation, In the church redeemed and triumphant he would have a perpetual dwelling; and wherever he should be, there would be given him sure pledges that he belonged to him, and was recognized as a citizen of the heavenly world. To no higher honor could any man aspire; and yet that is an honor to which the most humble and lowly may attain by faith in the Son of God.

The Epistle to the Church at Laodicea

The contents of the epistle to the church at Laodicea Revelation 3:14-22 are as follows:

(1)The usual salutation to the angel of the church, Revelation 3:14,

(2)The reference to the attributes of the speaker - the one here referred to being that he was the “Amen,” “the faithful and true witness,” and “the beginning of the creation of God,” Revelation 3:14.

(3)the claim that he knew all their works, Revelation 3:15.

(4)the characteristic of the church: it was “lukewarm” - neither “cold nor hot,” Revelation 3:15.

(5)the punishment threatened, that he would “spue them out of his mouth,” Revelation 3:16.

(6)asolemn reproof of their self-confidence, of their ignorance of themselves, an of their pride, when they were in fact poor, and blind, and naked; and a solemn counsel to them to apply to him for those things which would make them truly rich - which would cover up the shame of their nakedness, and which would give them clear spiritual vision, Revelation 3:17-18.

(7)acommand to repent, in view of the fact that he rebukes and chastens those whom he loves.

(8)an assurance that an opportunity is still offered for repentance, represented by his standing at the door and praying for admittance, Revelation 3:20.

(9)apromise to him that should be victorious - in this case, that he should sit down with him on his throne, Revelation 3:21; and,

(10)the usual call on those who had ears to hear, to attend to what the Spirit said to the churches.

Laodicea was situated in the southern part of Phrygia, near the junction of the small rivers Asopus and Carpus, on a plain washed at its edges by each. It was about 40 miles from Ephesus, and not far from Colosse and Hierapolis. In the time of Strabo it was a large city; but the frequency of earthquakes, to which this district has been always liable, demolished, long since, a large part of the city, and destroyed many of the inhabitants, and the place was abandoned, and now lies in ruins. It is now a deserted place, called by the Turks Eski-hissar, or Old Castle. From its ruins, ‹which are numerous, consisting of the remains of temples, theaters, etc., it seems to have been situated on six or seven hills, taking up a large space of ground. The whole rising ground on which the city stood is one vast tumulus of ruins, abandoned entirely to the owl and the fox. Col. Leake says, “There are few ancient sites more likely than Laodicea to preserve many curious remains of antiquity beneath the surface of the soil; its opulence, and the earthquakes to which it was subject, rendering it probable that valuable works of art were there buried beneath the ruins of the public and private edifices.”

The neighboring village contains some 50 or 60 people, among whom, on a visit of a recent traveler there, there were only two nominal Christians (circa the mid-19th century). “The name of Christianity,” says Emerson (p. 101), “is forgotten, and the only sounds that disturb the silence of its desertion are the tones of the Muezzin, whose voice from the distant village (Eski-hissar) proclaims the ascendency of Muhammed. Laodicea is even more solitary than Ephesus; for the latter has the prospect of the rolling sea or of a whitening sail to enliven its decay; while the former sits in widowed loneliness, its walls are grass-grown, its temples desolate, its very name has perished.” A thunderstorm gathered on the mountains at a distance while this traveler was examining the ruins of Laodicea. He returned to Eski-hissar, and waited until the fury of the storm had abated, but set off on his journey again before it had entirely ceased to blow and to rain. “We preferred,” says he, “hastening on, to a further delay in that melancholy spot, where everything whispered desolation, and where the very wind that swept impetuously through the valley sounded like the fiendish laugh of time exulting over the destruction of man and his proudest monuments.” See Prof. Stuart, vol. ii. pp. 44,45; Kitto‘s Encyclopedia; “Smith‘s Journey to the Seven Churches,” 1671; Leake, Arundell, Hartley, MacFarlane, Pococke, etc. The engraving in this vol. will furnish a representation of the ruins of Laodicea.

Copyright Statement
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Bibliographical Information
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/revelation-3.html. 1870.

The Biblical Illustrator

Revelation 3:12

Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of My God.

The Philadelphian conqueror

I. The conqueror is to be a temple-pillar. Not an outside, but an inside pillar. The interior colonnades or double rows of tall pillars in some churches and temples are splendid beyond description. They are part of the vast fabric; not like those who minister there, going out and in, but standing immovable in their surpassing beauty. Such is the reward of the Philadelphian conqueror. An everlasting inhabitant and ornament of that sanctuary of which we read, “I saw no temple therein,” etc. They shall go no more out! Their home is the innermost shrine in the heaven of heavens. Like Jachin and Boaz (1 Kings 7:15; 1 Kings 7:21), there they stand for ever. II The conqueror is to be inscribed with glorious names. It is said of Christ that He has on His vesture and on His thigh a name written, “King of kings and Lord of lords.” It is said of the redeemed in glory that they have their Father’s name written on their foreheads (Revelation 14:1); so here on these Philadelphian pillars are many names to be inscribed, each of them unutterably glorious. These inscriptions are written by Christ Himself: “I will write.” He engraves these names upon these temple-pillars, that they may be eternal witnesses to them in the glorious sanctuary. The inscriptions to be thus engraven are as follows:

1. The name of my God. This is the name which God proclaimed to Moses, the name which is the summary of His blessed character, as the God of all grace. What honour! To be the marble on which Jehovah’s name is carved, and from which it shall blaze forth in the eternal temple!

2. The name of the city of my God. Other pillars set up on earth by man have the names of deities, or kings, or warriors, or cities graven upon them. But this inscription excels all in glory.

3. My new name. This is the new name given by Christ, which no man knoweth save he who receiveth it. (H. Bonar, D. D.)

The Christians final triumph

I. The qualification insisted upon in the text. “Him that over-cometh.”

1. The term evidently implies a struggle and conflict.

2. The term “overcometh” implies daily advancement and success.

3. A third feature of the man who “overcometh” is perseverance. His religion is not the mere meteor of the moment, extinguished almost as soon as kindled. He will set his face like a flint against corruption; will “resist, even unto blood, the contradiction of sinners” against the Master he loves.

II. The promises addressed in the text to the victorious servants of the Redeemer.

1. The successful Christian shall be “made a pillar in the temple of his God.” In this world the servant of the Redeemer may be a mere outcast in society. Nevertheless, “he that overcometh shall be made a pillar in the temple of God.” That poor outcast, if a true servant of Christ, shall be stripped of his rags and wretchedness, and be raised as a pillar of ornament in the temple of the Lord. Great will be the changes of the last day: “the first shall be last and the last first.”

2. He “shall go no more out.” The sun of his joys shall never go down. The wellspring of his comforts shall never fail.

3. “I will write on him the name of My God.” In this world, it is possible that the sincere Christian may be perplexed, either by his own doubts of acceptance with God or by the suspicions and insinuations of others; but in heaven his acceptance and adoption will be no longer a disputable point. He shall be recognised by Him who has stamped him with His own name.

4. “I will write on him the name of the city of My God, which is New Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God.” Even here it is “the city not made with hands” which the Christian seeks. And to that city he shall be exalted in heaven.

5. “I will write upon him My new Name.” (J. W. Cunningham.)

Fidelity rewarded

I. In heaven noble service. Believers are called in the epistles, even while they are on earth, “the temple of God.” But how often it is desecrated and defiled! Here the same image has a more glorious and fitting application to the perfect life of heaven. We seem to see the entire company of God’s servants fitly framed together into one vast, living temple; the polished stones brought from many distant parts. What worship there, where every stone has a tongue to praise, a heart to feel! But as, in examining a noble pile of building, the great whole distracts you, and you turn from it to look separately at single parts--a window, or an arch--so let us follow our heavenly guide, as, leading us through the “temple of His God,” He points our attention to one of its component parts, bids us observe the functions of a “pillar” in it. It is the office of a pillar to support, uphold, an edifice, and also to adorn it. A column, then, is a noble part of any building; noble because of its important function--to sustain within a small compass the weight of the spreading roof and arches; and noble also because there can be joined with this utility beauty of form and wealth of ornament. Then, too, a pillar is not something extraneous, introduced into a building for a temporary purpose, and then to be removed; but it is an essential part of it. So the servant whom Christ makes a pillar in God’s temple shall by that appointment become himself an actual part of heaven itself, bearing its glories up by the unwearied strength of his own hands, and adding to its beauty by his holiness and by the bright success attending all his toils. As a column has no wasted parts, but is so shaped that every atom bears its due proportion of the weight, or carries ornament in keeping with the beauties around it, so you are being moulded, by the Divine Workman who makes the pillars for that temple, in such wise that your energies will neither be left latent nor be overstrained, but developed to the full, and kept in joyous exercise, till you, in your place there, will become a very part of heaven, its beauty and blessedness augmented by the contribution of your pure delight. For the light of God will flash back reflected from the pillars there.

II. No last hours in heaven. This expressive image of a pillar is often applied, and justly, to the positions men occupy on earth. For men of high faculties do often find worthy scope for their powers--fill important posts with eminent success. The warrior who saves his country’s independence--what a noble pillar of its fortunes is he! Or the statesman, who develops its resources, and conducts it to greatness and renown--how fitly is he called a pillar of the state! When the great abilities needed for such high stations are employed in filling them, have we not all we covet, namely, noble faculties in noblest exercise? Well, forget if you will the failures and disappointments which attend such careers, yet will you say that such a lot is comparable to heaven? Look on a few years. A great funeral passes by--the pillar is broken. Out of his high place he goes, and does not return. Oh, what an abatement of pride to know that any day the stately column may fall prostrate in the dust! But he whom Christ makes a pillar in the temple of His God “shall go no more out.” His strength and beauty will never know decay.

III. Such service is the reward of victory here. For he whom Christ makes a pillar there, is “him that overcometh.” So that the temptations, the disappointments, the wretched weaknesses, all so harassing, and in such sad contrast to the bright light above, are not hostile to it, but co-operate towards it. The stability of heaven, so firm and glorious, is to be won only by patient endurance of earth’s changes and earnest conflict with its sins. So if you want to work for God there, with delightful ease, you must learn by hard effort here to use your hands skilfully for Him. The workman who does the hardest task with greatest ease has gained that dexterity only by years of strenuous toll. And so the servants who do God’s work with joyous ease in heaven, have all come out of great tribulation, and have by that hard discipline been schooled into their glorious proficiency, and only after a long, fierce conflict did they “overcome.”

IV. The double agency spoken of. “Him that overcometh”: the man must fight and conquer. “I will make him a pillar”: like a passive column, he is fashioned by another’s hand. Yes; both are true. We must act; not because God does not, but because He does. Christ, by the might and skill of His Divine hand, makes a pillar, not of the man who wishes and dreams, but of the man who overcomes. The blows of misfortune, which were so hard to bear and seemed so disastrous, were the strokes of His Divine chisel, educing beauty from deformity. The bitter deprivation of what they prized so much, and which excited such complaints, was the cutting away of what would have for ever disfigured God’s temple if it had remained. (T. M. Herbert, M. A.)

A pillar in the temple, the emblem of moral character

I. Here is the idea of sanctity.

II. Here is the idea of strength. God uses the good in the maintenance of His Church in the world, hence they must give their best sympathy, talent, and effort in its service. The good will be stronger in the temple above.

III. Here is the idea of permanence. In this life moral character in its higher mood is uncertain in continuance; it is beset by many enemies who would carry it out of the temple of God; but there it will be eternally amidst scenes of devotion and splendour.

IV. Here is the idea of inscription. In heaven moral character will be more God-like; it will be transformed by a vision of the Eternal. Every man’s life has some inscription on it, which is read by the world. Lessons:

1. That the good are consecrated to Divine uses in life.

2. That the good are to be morally useful in life. That the good should in their lives exhibit the name of God. (J. S. Exell, M. A.)

The promises to the victor

I. The steadfast pillar. Now, I take it that the two clauses which refer to this matter are closely connected. “I will make him a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out.” In the second clause the figure is dropped; and the point of the metaphor is brought out more clearly. Here it cannot mean the office of sustaining a building, or pre-eminence above others, as it naturally lends itself sometimes to mean. For instance, the Apostle Paul speaks of the three chief apostles in Jerusalem and says that they “seemed to be pillars.” We cannot conceive of even redeemed men sustaining that temple in the heavens; and also, inasmuch as the promise here is perfectly universal, and is given to all that overcome. Now, the second of the two clauses which are thus linked together seems to me to point to the direction in which we are to look. “He shall go no more out.” A pillar is a natural emblem of stability and permanence, as poets in many tongues, and in many lands, have felt it to be. But whilst the general notion is that of stability and permanence, do not let us forget that it is permanence and stability in a certain direction, for the pillar is “in the temple of my God.” And whilst there are ideas of dignity and grace attaching to the metaphor of the pillar, the underlying meaning of it is substantially that the individual souls of redeemed men shall be themselves parts, and collectively shall constitute the temple of God in the heavens. The special point in which that perfection and transcendence are expressed here is to be kept prominent. “He shall go no more out.” Permanence, and stability, and uninterruptedness in the communion and consciousness of an indwelling God, is a main element in the glory and blessedness of that future life. Stability in any fashion comes as a blessed hope to us, who know the cause of constant change, and are tossing on the unquiet waters of life. Sometimes the bay is filled with flashing waters that leap in the sunshine; sometimes, when the tide is out, there is only a long stretch of grey and cozy mud. It shall not be always so. Like lands on the equator, where the difference between midsummer and midwinter is scarcely perceptible, either in length of day or in degree of temperature, that future will be a calm continuance, a uniformity which is not monotony, and a stability which does not exclude progress. “He shall go no more out.” Eternal glory and unbroken communion is the blessed promise to the victor who is made by Christ “a pillar in the temple of my God.”

II. Now, secondly, notice the threefold inscription. The writing of a name implies ownership and visibility. So the first of the triple inscriptions declares that the victor shall be conspicuously God’s. “I will write upon him the name of my God.” There may possibly be an allusion to the golden plate which flamed in the front of the High Priest’s mitre, and on which was written the unspoken name of Jehovah. How do we possess one another? How do we belong to God? How does God belong to us? There is but one way by which a spirit can possess a spirit--by love; which leads to self-surrender and to practical obedience. And if--as a man writes his name in his books, as a farmer brands on his sheep and oxen the marks that express his ownership--on the redeemed there is written the name of God, that means, whatever else it may mean, perfect love, perfect self-surrender, perfect obedience. That is the perfecting of the Christian relationship which is begun here on earth. In the preceding letter to Sardis we were told that the victor’s name should not “be blotted out of the book of life.” Here the same thought is suggested by a converse metaphor. The name of the victor is written on the rolls of the city; and the name of the city is stamped on the forehead of the victor. That is to say, the affinity which even here and now has knit men who believe in Jesus Christ to an invisible order, where is their true mother-city and metropolis, will then be uncontradicted by any inconsistencies, unobscured by the necessary absorption in daily duties and transient aims and interests which often veils to others, and renders less conscious to ourselves, our true belonging to the city beyond the sea. The last of the triple inscriptions declares that the victor shall be conspicuously Christ’s. “I will write upon him My new name.” What is that new name? It is an expression for the sum of the new revelations of what He is, which will flood the souls of the redeemed when they pass from earth. That new name will not obliterate the old one--God forbid! It will do away with the ancient, earth-begun relation of dependence and faith and obedience. “Jesus Christ is the same … for ever”; and His name in the heavens, as upon earth, is Jesus the Saviour. That new name no man fully knows, even when he has entered on its possession, and carries it on his forehead; for the infinite Christ, who is the manifestation of the infinite God, can never be comprehended, much less exhausted, even by the united perceptions of a redeemed universe, but for ever and ever more and more will well out from Him. His name shall last as long as the sun, and blaze when the sun himself is dead. (A. Maclaren, D. D.)

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Bibliographical Information
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "Revelation 3:12". The Biblical Illustrator. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tbi/revelation-3.html. 1905-1909. New York.

Coffman Commentaries on the Bible

He that overcometh, I will make him a pillar in the temple of my God and he shall go out thence no more: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God, and mine own new name.

He that overcometh ... That is, the conquerors of earth's allurements and temptations. Hendriksen's great book on "More than Conquerors" comes to mind frequently through the repeated use of this expression.

A pillar in the temple of my God ... Like all of the similar promises to these churches, this is a promise of eternal life. The mention of the new Jerusalem and the new name require this understanding of it. "The temple, then, and the pillar are both figurative; and all reference to the historic church, or to position in it are excluded."[54]

Despite the interpretation advocated above, many insist on seeing the temple here as meaning the church, and the reference to the pillar as a promise of security and stability in it for the faithful Christian, a view supported by Paul's frequent mention of the church as "the temple" of the Holy Spirit, etc. Wallace was of this opinion. There is also the additional consideration that in the new Jerusalem, there shall not be any temple (Revelation 22:22). Nevertheless, the overwhelming impression remains that the Lord was here speaking of eternal life. Many of the figures in Revelation are not always used in strictly the same sense. Of course, it is true, also, that the overcomer shall be established in the church with safety and security; but the greater fact of inheriting eternal life seems to be more in keeping with the similar promises prevailing throughout this series to the seven churches.

I will write upon him the name of my God ... Addressed to Christians in a city which at least three times had changed their name, trying repeatedly to write upon themselves the "name of their God," this seems peculiarly appropriate. Some intimations of this glorious naming of God's children in eternity is seen in the fact of their being now baptized into the sacred triple name (Matthew 28:18-20) and of their wearing the name of Christ in the title Christians. We cannot say what may be implied beyond this in heaven.

ENDNOTE:

[54] Isbon T. Beckwith, op. cit., p. 485.

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Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.
Bibliographical Information
Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "Coffman Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/revelation-3.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

He that overcometh,.... In the hour of temptation, in this period of time; that stands his ground then, sustains the shock of the beast, with courage and intrepidity, and overcomes him:

will I make a pillar in the temple of my God; by which is meant not the church triumphant, though such will have a place, and an abiding one there; but the church militant, so called in allusion to the temple at Jerusalem, for its author, matter, situation, strength, solidity, magnificence, and stateliness, and for its holiness; and may be said to be the temple of God, because it is of his building, and is the place where he dwells, and is worshipped; and the temple of Christ's God, as he is man and Mediator, through whom all worship is given to God in it; and those who are overcomers by the grace and strength of Christ are made pillars by him here, in allusion to the two pillars, Jachin and Boaz, in Solomon's temple; that is, they become very ornamental in the church, they are made honourable members of it; they come in at the right door into it, and fill up their places, and all relative duties in it, and walk becoming their profession; and, like pillars, are a support to it, to the interest of the church, the truths of the Gospel, and to weak and poor saints; and, as pillars, they are upright in heart and conversation, and are steady, firm, and constant:

and he shall go no more out; out of the church, the temple of the Lord, but shall abide in it unto death: it is a promise of perseverance both in the grace of God, and in a profession of religion; there shall not be such instances of apostasy as now,

And I will write upon him the name of my God; in allusion to inscriptions of names on pillars; the sense is, that it should be manifest that such are interested in God, as their covenant God and Father, in like manner as he is the God and Father of Christ; and this should be as plain and as evident as an inscription on a pillar, or as if it was written upon their foreheads, as the high priest had on his forehead written, "holiness to the Lord"; and indeed it will be by their holiness that it will so clearly appear that God is their covenant God; for in this church state, or spiritual reign of Christ, holiness unto the Lord shall be upon the bells of the horses:

and the name of the city of my God; which is new Jerusalem, in allusion to "Jehovah Shammah"; meaning the Gospel church in the latter day glory; and the sense is, that such shall be manifestly citizens of this city, in this new and glorious state of the church, and shall enjoy all the privileges of it, which at this time especially will be many and great. This will not be the new Jerusalem church state, or the thousand years' reign of Christ in person, for in that there will be no temple, as in this; but it will have the name, and some appearance of it; it will bear some resemblance to it, and be a pledge of it:

which cometh down out of heaven, from my God; as it is before called new Jerusalem, in distinction from the old, so here it is said to come down from heaven, or to be the heavenly Jerusalem, in distinction from the earthly one. The inhabitants of it will be born from above, and be called with an heavenly calling, and their conversation will be in heaven, and all the glory of this church will come from God,

And I will write upon him my new name; either the name of "Jehovah" our righteousness; or rather the name of King of kings, and Lord of lords, Revelation 19:16; which Christ will now acquire, or at least this will now be made more manifest upon the destruction of antichrist, in this church state; in which conquest he will make all his people sharers, and they shall now more openly appear to be kings, and to reign with him in his spiritual kingdom.

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Gill, John. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/revelation-3.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

9 Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: 10 and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, [which is] new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and [I will write upon him] my new name.

(9) The conclusion which contains a promise, and a commandment.

(10) That is, the new man shall be called after his father, mother, and his head Christ.

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Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/revelation-3.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

pillar in the temple — In one sense there shall be “no temple” in the heavenly city because there shall be no distinction of things into sacred and secular, for all things and persons shall be holy to the Lord. The city shall be all one great temple, in which the saints shall be not merely stones, as m the spiritual temple now on earth, but all eminent as pillars: immovably firm (unlike Philadelphia, the city which was so often shaken by earthquakes, Strabo [12 and 13]), like the colossal pillars before Solomon‘s temple, Boaz (that is, “In it is strength”) and Jachin (“It shall be established”): only that those pillars were outside, these shall be within the temple.

my God — (See on Revelation 2:7).

go no more out — The Greek is stronger, never more at all. As the elect angels are beyond the possibility of falling, being now under (as the Schoolmen say) “the blessed necessity of goodness,” so shall the saints be. The door shall be once for all shut, as well to shut safely in for ever the elect, as to shut out the lost (Matthew 25:10; John 8:35; compare Isaiah 22:23, the type, Eliakim). They shall be priests for ever unto God (Revelation 1:6). “Who would not yearn for that city out of which no friend departs, and into which no enemy enters?” [Augustine in Trench].

write upon him the name of my God — as belonging to God in a peculiar sense (Revelation 7:3; Revelation 9:4; Revelation 14:1; and especially Revelation 22:4), therefore secure. As the name of Jehovah (“Holiness to the Lord”) was on the golden plate on the high priest‘s forehead (Exodus 28:36-38); so the saints in their heavenly royal priesthood shall bear His name openly, as consecrated to Him. Compare the caricature of this in the brand on the forehead of the beast‘s followers (Revelation 13:16, Revelation 13:17), and on the harlot (Revelation 17:5; compare Revelation 20:4).

name of the city of my God — as one of its citizens (Revelation 21:2, Revelation 21:3, Revelation 21:10, which is briefly alluded to by anticipation here). The full description of the city forms the appropriate close of the book. The saint‘s citizenship is now hidden, but then it shall be manifested: he shall have the right to enter in through the gates into the city (Revelation 22:14). This was the city which Abraham looked for.

newGreek, “{kaine}.” Not the old Jerusalem, once called “the holy city,” but having forfeited the name. Greek, “{nea},” would express that it had recently come into existence; but Greek, “{kaine},” that which is new and different, superseding the worn-out old Jerusalem and its polity. “John, in the Gospel, applies to the old city the Greek name {Hierosolyma}. But in the Apocalypse, always, to the heavenly city the Hebrew name, {Hierousalem}. The Hebrew name is the original and holier one: the Greek, the recent and more secular and political one” [Bengel].

my new name — at present incommunicable and only known to God: to be hereafter revealed and made the believer‘s own in union with God in Christ. Christ‘s name written on him denotes he shall be wholly Christ‘s. New also relates to Christ, who shall assume a new character (answering to His “new name”) entering with His saints on a kingdom - not that which He had with the Father before the worlds, but that earned by His humiliation as Son of man. Gibbon, the infidel [Decline and Fall, ch. 64], gives an unwilling testimony to the fulfillment of the prophecy as to Philadelphia from a temporal point of view, Among the Greek colonies and churches of Asia, Philadelphia is still erect, - a column in a scene of ruins - a pleasing example that the paths of honor and safety may sometimes be the same.”

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/revelation-3.html. 1871-8.

Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament

He that overcometh (ο νικωνho nikōn). Nominative absolute as in Revelation 2:26, resumed by the accusative αυτονauton (him).

A pillar (στυλονstulon). Old word for column, in N.T. only here, Revelation 10:1; Galatians 2:9; 1 Timothy 3:15. Metaphorical and personal use with a double significance of being firmly fixed and giving stability to the building. Philadelphia was a city of earthquakes. “Temple” (ναοςnaos) here is also metaphorical (Revelation 7:15), as in 1 Timothy 3:15 for the people of God. In Revelation 21:22 we read that there is no temple in the heavenly Jerusalem (21:10-22:5) descending as the new Jerusalem with God himself as the temple, though the metaphorical temple is mentioned in Revelation 7:15.

He shall go out thence no more (εχω ου μη ελτηιexō ou mē elthēi). Strong double negative ου μηou mē with the second aorist active subjunctive of ερχομαιerchomai The subject is ο νικωνho nikōn (the one overcoming). “Fixity of character is at last achieved” (Charles). He, like the στυλοςstulos (pillar), remains in place.

Upon him (επ αυτονep' auton). Upon ο νικωνho nikōn (the victor), not upon the pillar (στυλοςstulos). He receives this triple name (of God, of the city of God, of Christ) on his forehead (Revelation 14:1; Revelation 7:3; Revelation 17:5; Revelation 22:4) just as the high-priest wore the name of Jehovah upon his forehead (Exodus 28:36, Exodus 28:38), the new name (Revelation 2:17), without any magical or talismanic power, but as proof of ownership by God, as a citizen of the New Jerusalem, with the new symbol of the glorious personality of Christ (Revelation 19:12), in contrast with the mark of the beast on others (Revelation 13:17; Revelation 14:17). For citizenship in God‘s city see Galatians 4:26; Philippians 3:20; Hebrews 11:10; Hebrews 12:22; Hebrews 13:14.

The new Jerusalem (της καινης Ιερουσαλημtēs kainēs Ierousalēm). Not νεαςneas (young), but καινηςkainēs (fresh). See also Revelation 21:2, Revelation 21:10 and already Galatians 4:26; Hebrews 12:22. Charles distinguishes between the Jerusalem before the final judgment and this new Jerusalem after that event. Perhaps so! In the Apocalypse always this form ΙερουσαλημIerousalēm (Revelation 3:12; Revelation 21:2, Revelation 21:10), but in John‘s Gospel ιεροσολυμαHierosoluma (Revelation 1:19, etc.).

Which cometh down (η καταβαινουσαhē katabainousa). Nominative case in apposition with the preceding genitive πολεωςpoleōs as in Revelation 1:5; Revelation 2:20, etc.

Mine own new name (το ονομα μου το καινονto onoma mou to kainon). For which see Revelation 2:17; Revelation 19:12, Revelation 19:16. Christ himself will receive a new name along with all else in the future world (Gressmann).

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Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rwp/revelation-3.html. Broadman Press 1932,33. Renewal 1960.

Vincent's Word Studies

Pillar ( στύλον )

The word occurs, Galatians 2:9; 1 Timothy 3:15; Revelation 10:1. The reference here is not to any prominence in the earthly church, as Galatians 2:9, but to blessedness in the future state. The exact meaning is doubtful. Some explain, he shall have a fixed and important place in the glorified church. Compare Matthew 19:28. Others emphasize the idea of stability, and find a possible local reference to the frequent earthquakes from which Philadelphia had suffered, and which had shaken its temples. Strabo says: “And Philadelphia has not even its walls unimpaired, but daily they are shaken in some way, and gaps are made in them. But the inhabitants continue to occupy the land notwithstanding their sufferings, and to build new houses.” Others again emphasize the idea of beauty. Compare 1 Peter 2:5, where the saints are described living stones.

Temple ( ναῷ )

See on Matthew 4:5.

Upon him

The conqueror, not the pillar. Compare Revelation 7:3; Revelation 9:4; Revelation 14:1; Revelation 22:4. Probably with reference to the golden plate inscribed with the name of Jehovah, and worn by the High-Priest upon his forehead (Exodus 28:36, Exodus 28:38). See on Revelation 2:17.

New Jerusalem

See Ezekiel 48:35. The believer whose brow is adorned with this name has the freedom of the heavenly city. Even on earth his commonwealth is in heaven (Philippians 3:20). “Still, his citizenship was latent: he was one of God's hidden ones; but now he is openly avouched, and has a right to enter in by the gates to the city” (Trench). The city is called by John, the great and holy (Revelation 21:10); by Matthew, the holy city (Matthew 4:5); by Paul, Jerusalem which is above (Galatians 4:6); by the writer to the Hebrews, the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem (Hebrews 12:22). Plato calls his ideal city Callipolis, the fair city (“Republic,” vii., 527), and the name Ouranopolis, heavenly city, was applied to Rome and Byzantium. For new ( καινῆς ), see on Matthew 26:29. The new Jerusalem is not a city freshly built ( νέα ), but is new ( καινὴ ) in contrast with the old, outworn, sinful city. In the Gospel John habitually uses the Greek and civil form of the name, Ἰεροσόλυμα ; in Revelation, the Hebrew and more holy appellation, ἱερουσάλημ .

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Vincent, Marvin R. DD. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/vnt/revelation-3.html. Charles Schribner's Sons. New York, USA. 1887.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.

I will make him a pillar in the temple of my God — I will fix him as beautiful, as useful, and as immovable as a pillar in the church of God.

And he shall go out no more — But shall be holy and happy for ever.

And I will write upon him the name of my God — So that the nature and image of God shall appear visibly upon him.

And the name of the city of my God — Giving him a title to dwell in the New Jerusalem. And my new name - A share in that joy which I entered into, after overcoming all my enemies.

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Wesley, John. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/revelation-3.html. 1765.

Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary

12.] The reward of the conqueror. He that conquereth (for the pendent nom., see ref.), I will make him a pillar in the temple of my God (i. e. he shall have a fixed and important place in the glorified church hereafter. That this, and nothing referring to any honour or dignity in the church militant (so Lyra, Aretius, Grot., “Wetst., Schöttg., al.), or in that as leading on to the church triumphant (so Vitr., Corn.-a-lap., Stern, al.) is intended, is manifest from the whole diction of this passage, as well as from comparing the corresponding promises, which all refer to the blessings of the future state of glory. It is no objection to this view, that in the heavenly Jerusalem there is no temple, ch. Revelation 21:22; but rather a corroboration of it. That glorious city is all temple, and Christ’s victorious ones are its living stones and pillars. Thus as Düsterd. well remarks, the imagery of the church militant, 1 Corinthians 3:16 ff.; Ephesians 2:19 ff.; 1 Peter 2:5 ff., is transferred to the church triumphant, but with this difference, that the saints are no longer the stones merely, but now the pillars themselves, standing in their immovable firmness. On θεοῦ μου, see note on ch. Revelation 2:7), and out of it he shall never more go out (the subject is not the στύλος, but ὁ νικῶν; and the sense, that he who is thus fixed in his eternal place as a pillar in the heavenly temple, will never more, from any cause, depart from it. Those Commentators who have understood the promise of the church militant, have been obliged to take ἐξέλθῃ as a passive,” non ejicietur,” justifying this by such expressions as μήτι ὁ λύχνος ἔρχεται, Mark 4:21. Lyra takes it in both senses—“nec per apostasin, nec per excommunicationem.” And thus, except that the latter word will have no place, we may well understand the general word ἐξέλθῃ: none shall thrust him out, nor shall he be any more in danger of falling, and thus thrusting himself out. It is well worth noticing, as Wetst. has done, the recorded fact, that Philadelphia was notorious for calamities by earthquake. The language in which Strabo describes this is remarkable in connexion with this promise of the pillar which should not be moved; ἥ τε φιλαδέλφειαοὐδὲ τοὺς τοίχους ἔχει πιστούς, ἀλλὰ καθʼ ἡμέραν τρόπον τινὰ σαλεύονται καὶ διΐστανται· διατελοῦσι δὲ προσέχοντες τῆς γῆς τοῖς πάθεσι, καὶ ἀρχιτεκτονοῦτες πρὸς αὐτήν, xii. p. 868 B: and still more so in xiii. p. 936 B,— πόλις φιλαδέλφεια σεισμῶν πληρής. οὐ γὰρ διαλείπουσιν οἱ τοῖχοι διϊστάμενοι, καὶ ἄλλοτʼ ἄλλο μέρος τῆς πόλεως κακοπαθοῦν· οἰκοῦσιν οὖν ὀλίγοι τὴν πόλιν διὰ τοῦτο· … ἀλλὰ καὶ τῶν ὀλίγων θαυμάζειν ἐστὶν ὅτι οὕτω φιλοχωροῦσιν ἐπισφαλεῖς τὰς οἰκήσεις ἔχοντες· ἔτι δʼ ἄν τις μᾶλλον θαυμάσειε τῶν κτισάντων αὐτήν. See also Tacit. Ann. ii. 47, where among the twelve cities of proconsular Asia which were overthrown by an earthquake, Philadelphia suffered, and was in consequence excused its taxes, and in common with the others entrusted to a senatorian commissioner to repair): and I will write upon him (the conqueror; not as Grot., the pillar) the name of my God (Wetst. quotes from the Rabbinical book Bava Bathra 75. 2, “R. Samuel filius Nachmanni ait, R. Jochananem dixisse, tres appellari nomine Dei S. B.,—justos (Isaiah 43:7), Messiam (Jeremiah 23:6), Hierosolyma (Ezekiel 48:35).” Some think of the mitre frontlet of the high-priests, on which was inscribed “Holiness to the Lord,” Exodus 28:36; so Schöttg., Ewald, al. But this does not seem applicable here, where, from this and the following particulars, it is rather a blessed belonging to God and the holy city and Christ, that is imported, than the priestly office of the glorified Christian) and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which descendeth (the appositive nom., see reff.) out of heaven from my God (on the whole, see ch. Revelation 21:2-3, and notes. It is possible, that the name Jehovah Shammah, Ezekiel 48:35, may be meant; but hardly probable, seeing that the Holy Name itself has before been mentioned as inscribed on him. The inscription of the name of the city would betoken citizenship), and mine own new name (not the name mentioned ch. Revelation 19:16, which is known and patent, but that indicated ch. Revelation 19:12, ὃ οὐδεὶς οἶδεν εἰ μὴ αὐτός: for this is clearly pointed at by the word καινόν. By the inscription of this new name of the glorified Saviour is declared, that he belongs to Him in His new and glorious state of eternal rest and triumph).

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Alford, Henry. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hac/revelation-3.html. 1863-1878.

Scofield's Reference Notes

go no more

See, Psalms 23:6, contrast, Hebrews 13:14.

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Scofield, C. I. "Scofield Reference Notes on Revelation 3:12". "Scofield Reference Notes (1917 Edition)". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/srn/revelation-3.html. 1917.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

12 Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.

Ver. 12. Will I make a pillar] Pillars are both the firmament and ornament of temples. Understand it of that fulness and constancy both of grace and of glory in heaven.

Which is new Jerusalem] It was a pride in Montanus to overween his Peruza and Tymium (two pelting parishes in Phrygia) and to call them Jerusalem, as if they had been the only churches. (Euseb. v. 15.) And surely, it is nothing else but pride in the Brownists to avow that their churches are nothing less than the new Jerusalem coming down from heaven: that the very crown, sceptre, and throne of Christ’s kingdom consists in them. (See Mr Bailey’s Dissuasive, p. 17.)

My new name] viz. That which he received from his Father in his exaltation, Ephesians 1:20; Philippians 2:9.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/revelation-3.html. 1865-1868.

Sermon Bible Commentary

Revelation 3:12

The Pillar in God's Temple.

I. "To him that overcometh," reads the promise; and the first thing that we want to understand is what the struggle is in which the victory is to be won. It is the Saviour Christ who speaks. His voice comes out of the mystery and glory of heaven to the Church in Philadelphia; and this book, in which His words are written, stands last in the New Testament. The Gospel story is all told; the work of incarnation and redemption is all done. Jesus has gone back to His Father, and now is speaking down to men and women on the earth who are engaged there in the special struggle for which He has prepared the conditions, and to which it has been the purpose of His life and death to summon them. Let us remember that. It is a special struggle; it is not the mere human fight with pain and difficulty which every living mortal meets; it is not the wrestling for place, for knowledge, for esteem, for any of the prizes which men covet. Nay; it is not absolutely the struggle after righteousness; it is not the pure desire and determination of a man's own will; it is not to those that Christ looks down and sends His promise. He had called to a special struggle on the earth; He had bidden men struggle after goodness out of love, and gratitude, and loyalty to Him. If the motive everywhere and always is the greatest and most important part of every action, then there must always be a difference between men who are striving to do right, and not to do wrong, according to the love which sets them striving. If it is love of themselves, their struggle will be one thing; if it is love of abstract righteousness, it will be another; if it is love of Christ, it will be still another. It is to men and women in this struggle that Christ speaks, and promises them the appropriate reward which belongs to perseverance and success in that obedience of loyalty and love.

II. This, then, is the peculiar struggle in which Christ, out of heaven, gives His promise. And now the promise can be understood if we understand the struggle. The two belong together. "Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of My God, and he shall go no more out." The ideas of the pillar in a building, in a temple, are these two: incorporation and permanence. The pillar is part of the structure, and when it is once set in its place, it is to be there as long as the temple stands. How clear the picture stands before us. There is a great, bright, solemn temple, where men come to worship; its doors are ever open; its windows tempt the sky. There are many and many things which have to do with such a temple. The winds come wandering through its high arches. Perhaps the birds stray in and build their nests, and stray away again when the short summer is done. The children roam across its threshold, and play for a few moments on its shining floor. Banners and draperies are hung upon its walls a while, and then carried away. Poor men and women, with their burdens and distress, come in and say a moment's prayer, and hurry out. Stately processions pass from door to door, making a brief disturbance in its quiet air. Generation after generation comes and goes, and is forgotten, each giving its place up to another; while still the temple stands, receiving and dismissing them in turn and outliving them all. All there are transitory; all there come into the temple, and then go out again. But a day comes when the great temple needs enlargement. The plan which it embodies must be made more perfect; it is to grow to a completer self. And then they bring up to the door a column of cut stone, hewn in the quarry for this very place, fitted and fit for this place, and no other; and, bringing it in with toil, they set it solidly down as part of the growing structure, part of the expanding plan. It blends with all the other stores; it loses while it keeps its individuality; it is useless except there where it is; and yet there where it is it has a use which is peculiarly its own, and different from every other stone's. The walls are built around it; it shares the building's charges. The reverence that men do to the sacred place falls upon it; the lights of sacred festivals shine on its face. It glows in the morning sunlight, and grows dim and solemn as the dusk gathers through the great expanse. Generations pass before it in their worship. They come and go, and the new generation follows them; and still the pillar stands. The day when it was hewn and set there is forgotten, as children never think when an old patriarch, whom they see standing among them, was born. It is part of the temple where the men so long dead set it so long ago. From the day that they set it there, "it goes no more out."

III. Can we not see perfectly the meaning of the figure? There are men and women everywhere who have something to do with God. They cannot help touching and being touched by Him, and His vast purposes, and the treatment which He is giving to the world; they cross and recross the pavement of His providence; they come to Him for what they want, and He gives it to them, and they carry it away; they ask Him for bread, and they carry it off into the chambers of their own selfishness and eat it; they ask Him for power, and then go off to the battle-fields or workshops of their own selfishness and use it; they are for ever going in and out of the presence of God; they sweep through His temple like the rushing wind, or they come in like the chance worshipper, and bend a moment's knee before the altar. And then there are the other men who are struggling to escape from sin by the love of Christ. How different they are! The end of everything to them is to get to Christ, and put themselves in Him, and stay there. They do not so much want to get to Christ that they may get away from sin, as they want to get away from sin that they may get to Christ. God is to them not merely a great Helper of their plans: He is the sum of all their plans, the end of all their wishes, the Being to whom their souls say, not, "Lord, help me to do what I will," but "Lord, show me Thy will, that I may make it mine and serve myself in serving Thee." When such a soul as that comes to Christ, it is like the day when the marble column from the quarry was dragged up and set into the temple aisle. Such a soul becomes part of the great purpose of God; it can go no more out; it has no purpose or meaning outside of God; its life is hid there in the sacred aisles of God's life. If God's life grows dark, the dusk gathers around this pillar which is set in it; if God's life brightens, the pillar burns and glows. Men who behold this soul think instantly of God. They cannot picture the pillar outside of the temple; they cannot picture the soul outside of the fear, the love, the communion, the obedience, of God.

Phillips Brooks, The Candle of the Lord, p. 60.


References: Revelation 3:12.—J. M. Neale, Sermons in a Religious House, vol. i., p. 312; Preacher's Monthly, vol. ii., p. 144.

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Nicoll, William R. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "Sermon Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/sbc/revelation-3.html.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Revelation 3:12. Will I make a pillar As a pillar is both an ornament and a support of the building, so these martyrs and confessors shall accordingly have greater power, and thus bear the weight of government in the New Jerusalem more than others. The allegoryis here continued from buildings,and perhaps there may be an allusion to the two pillars of Solomon's temple, Jachin and Boaz, 1 Kings 7:13; 1 Kings 7:51. He shall go no more out, plainly implies an eternal state to be enjoyed in the New Jerusalem. He goes on, and I will write upon him the name of my God: it was usual to grave inscriptions on pillars: here the apostle intimates the graving the name of God, as under his divine auspices the victory was gained; as likewise the name of New Jerusalem, to signify that the victor belonged to it, and was free of it. Few texts in the whole New Testament are more illustrated by antiquity than this. Great numbers of inscriptions are yet remaining, brought from the Grecian cities of Europe and Asia, and some from islands in the neighbourhood of Patmos, in which the victories of eminent persons are commemorated. Some of these were placed near the temples of their idol deities,others in the temples themselves, to signify their being put under the particular protection of those deities; whose names were therefore inscribed upon them, as well as the names of the conquerors, and of the cities to which they belonged, together with the names of the generals by whose conduct the victory was gained. See Isaiah 62:12. Ezekiel 48:35. It is observable, that during the persecuted state of the church, Christ is constantly called the Lamb, or denominated by such symbols as express the same state; but on his entrance into the New Jerusalem, he changes it, and puts on his new, secret, or wonderful name of King of Kings and Lord of Lords; and that is, because he has then wholly changed his state, and entered upon a new one; a secret never yet thoroughly known here below, but wonderful, great, and glorious. Because the true worshippers of Christ have never yet been whollyfree from persecution, Christ has never yet shewn us his new name; wherefore those here spoken of, on whom he bestows it, are such as shall be made partakers of the same state wherein he hath it as mediatorial King.

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Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/revelation-3.html. 1801-1803.

Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament

In this verse Christ promises a threefold reward to them that finally overcome all the temptations and trials of this life.

1. They shall be pillars in God's temple, that is, honourable and glorious members of the triumphant glorified church, and shall have a fixed happiness therein; possibly the Holy Ghost here alludes to the pillars in Solomon's temple, which were very beautiful.

2. They shall go no more out; the pillars in Solomon's porch were removed and carried away by the Chaldeans, but these pillars shall be perpetual, their glorious state shall be a fixed, unchangeable state; when all the pillars of the earth shall tremble, these pillars in the temple of heaven shall remain immoveable to eternal ages.

3. As in pillars erected by men their names were written and engraved; in like manner does Christ here promise the inscription of a threefold name upon these pillars, the name of God, the name of the city of God, and his new name.

The name of God signifies the person to be an adopted child of God: the name of the city of God, declares such a person to be a citizen of the New Jerusalem, which is said to come down out of heaven: that is, the knowledge of it comes down to us from God, else we had never known it, nor could ever have conceived of it: and Christ's new name, is that of the glorious Redeemer, and signifies him that overcometh shall be honoured as one of Christ's redeemed ones; the whole name put together, to wit, the name of God, the name of the city of God, and the new name, signifies an adopted son of God, and heir of the New Jerusalem, and a living member of Christ the glorified Redeemer; thus shall it be done to them whom Christ delighteth to honour: in the New Jerusalem above shall they spend an eternity in the rapturous and ravishing admiration of that love which Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, bestowed upon them, in making them first the adopted and now the glorified sons of God.

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Burkitt, William. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wbc/revelation-3.html. 1700-1703.

Heinrich Meyer's Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament

Revelation 3:12. As in all the epistles, so here, the concluding promise to the “victor” (cf. Revelation 3:11) proceeds to the time of eternal glory after the coming of the Lord. This is, besides, especially indicated here by the expression τ. καιν. ἰερους., κ. τ. λ. The incorrect reference to “the Church militant,”(1501) or “the Church militant and triumphant,”(1502) causes the most perverted interpretations of individual points. Thus N. de Lyra interprets, by understanding ἐν τ. ναῷ τ. θ. ΄. and τ. πόλεως τ. θ. ΄. of the Church militant, and the ποιήσω αὐτ. στύλον, recalling Galatians 2:9 : “Brave and powerful in faith, not only for himself, but also for comforting and sustaining others;” and remarks on ἔξω οὐ ΄ὴ ἐξέλθῃ ἔτι, “by apostasy, not by excommunication;” on γρ. έπʼ αὐτ. τ. ὄν τ. θ. ΄., “for they [viz., bishops] represent in the Church the person of God;” on καταβ. ἑκ τ. οὐρ.: “For the Church militant is ruled and directed by the Holy Spirit;” and on τ. ὄν, ΄. τὸ καινόν: “As the Lord himself at the circumcision was called Jesus, and afterwards Christ, so believers are first called disciples of Jesus, and then(1503) Christians.(1504) Similar distortions occur in Grot.,(1505) Wetst.,(1506) etc. The correct reference to the future glory(1507) is not in any way, as with Beng., to be so limited that the first promise ποιήσω αὐτ. στύλον ἐν τ. ναῷ τ. θ. μ. is fulfilled already at the time of Revelation 7:15, and before that of ch. 19, on the ground that there will be no temple in the new Jerusalem.(1508) For if it be said that in the new Jerusalem there will be no special place for the worship and revelation of God, as God himself will be immediately near all the blessed, this does not prevent, that, according to an idea of an entirely different kind, but of essentially the same meaning, the entire community of perfected believers is contemplated as the temple of God, in which individuals may appear as pillars. This is only a transfer of the figure of the temporal to that of the heavenly communion of saints;(1509) while the figure contains a significant feature, founded neither upon Isaiah 22:23,(1510) nor 1 Kings 7:15 sqq.,(1511) in that(1512) by being compared not to foundation-stones, but to the pillars of the temple,(1513) they are represented in their immutable firmness ( κ. ἔξω, κ. τ. λ.) and glorious adornment. Incorrectly, Eichh.:(1514) “The friends of the King, having more intimate access to him, who are admitted to his counsels, maybe called columns.”

καὶ ἔξω οὐ μὴ ἐξέλθῃ ἔτι. The subject is not στύλος,(1515) but νικῶν.(1516) Therefore the remark on ἐξέλθῃ is in no wise necessary, that the verb as intransitive expresses the(1517) sense of a passive.(1518) He who once, in the sense above indicated, is made a victor in the temple of God, henceforth shall no more go forth, either voluntarily (viz., by a fall), or under constraint.

καὶ γράψω ἐπʼ αυτὸν τὸ ὄνο΄α τοῦ θεοῦ ΄ου. Cf. in general Tr. Bara bathra, p. 75, Revelation 2 :(1519) “R. Samuel … says that R. Jochanan said that three are called by the name of God; e.g., the righteous,(1520) the Messiah,(1521) and Jerusalem.(1522)

ἐπʼ αὐτόν, viz., upon the victor,(1523) not upon the pillar.(1524) Areth. says more accurately: ἐπὶ τὸν νοητὸν στύλον [on the mental pillar]; yet here the αὐτόν is entirely identical with the preceding object ( ποιήσω) αὐτόν. If the question be asked as to where the inscription is to be regarded as written, the answer is to be given otherwise than Revelation 2:17, and according to Revelation 14:1, Revelation 22:4 (cf. Revelation 17:5, Revelation 7:3): “upon the forehead.” Since the ναός is mentioned, the thought is closely connected therewith of the inscription upon the high priest’s(1525) diadem, קרש ליהוה;(1526) and that, too, the more as by τὸ ὄνο΄α τ. θ. ΄. ft. the holy name יהוה(1527) is meant.(1528) At all events,(1529) the holy and blessed state of belonging to God is expressed.

So, too, the name of the city of God—which is arbitrarily traced to a breast-shield of the wearer, instead of the names of the twelve tribes(1530)—designates the right of citizenship in the new Jerusalem.(1531) The name “city” need not, however, be derived from Ezekiel 48:35,(1532)—although the description (Revelation 21:3 sqq.) is applicable as an exposition of that significant designation,—but John himself calls the city of God καινὴ ἱερουσαλή΄.

καταβαίνουσα, κ. τ. λ. The construction as Revelation 1:5. The meaning of the expression is elucidated by ch. 21. Falsely rationalizing, not only Grot.: “It has been procured by the wonderful kindness of God,” but even Calov.:(1533) “It has God as its author.”

κ. τ. ὄνο΄ά ΄ου τὸ καινὸν. Not the name mentioned in Revelation 19:16,(1534) but that meant in Revelation 19:12.(1535) But he who bears the new name of the Lord is thereby designated as eternally belonging to the Lord as though with the Lord’s own signature. If, however, the name of the Lord in this sense and significance can be placed alongside of that of God and the new Jerusalem, the Lord must verily be the one that in Revelation 3:7 he professes to be; in that also he says of himself ποιήσω, γράψω, he proclaims himself as one who is to be recognized as the eternal King of the kingdom of heaven.

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Meyer, Heinrich. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". Heinrich Meyer's Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hmc/revelation-3.html. 1832.

Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament

Revelation 3:12. (51) ναῷ) A recent error has λαῷ.(52) See App. on this passage, Ed. ii.

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Bengel, Johann Albrecht. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jab/revelation-3.html. 1897.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God: though by the temple of God in this place some understand the church of Christ on earth, where those always were, and are, and always shall be, most famous, who have overcome temptations best, from the world, the flesh, and the devil; yet, considering that all the promises before made to those who overcome are of another life, it seems best rather to interpret this so, that God would make such a one of fame and renown in heaven, great in the kingdom of heaven, Matthew 5:19, to sit upon a throne there, Matthew 19:28. He shall have a higher degree in glory, (for stars differ from one another in glory, 1 Corinthians 15:41), pillars being not only for support, but ornament, and principal parts in buildings.

And he shall go no more out; he shall have an eternal inheritance, of which he shall not be dispossessed.

And I will write upon him the name of my God; as men use, upon pillars and monuments erected for their own use and honour, to write their names; so I will peculiarly own, and challenge such a one for myself.

And the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem; and I will write upon him: This man is an inhabitant of the new Jerusalem.

And I will write upon him my new name; I will glorify him with that glory of which myself was made partaker, upon my ascension after my resurrection, John 17:22,24.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/revelation-3.html. 1685.

Alexander MacLaren's Expositions of Holy Scripture

Побеждающего Все христиане (см. пояснение к 2:7). столпом Когда придет Бог, верующие будут рады иметь вечное, непоколебимое надежное место рядом с Ним в храме (см. пояснение к 7:15).

напишуимя Бога Моего В древние времена имя человека говорило о нем и его характере. Написать имя Бога на нас – значит запечатлеть Его характер в нас и признать нас принадлежащими Ему.

нового Иерусалима Это столица небес (см. пояснение к 21:1-27). Победитель будет радоваться вечному гражданству.

имя Мое новое В момент, когда мы увидим Христа, все те имена, которыми мы называли Его, и все значения этих имен потускнеют в свете увиденной реальности. И Он откроет нам Свое новое, вечное имя, которым мы станем Его называть.

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MacLaren, Alexander. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". Alexander MacLaren's Expositions of Holy Scripture. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mac/revelation-3.html.

Justin Edwards' Family Bible New Testament

A pillar in the temple of my God; give him a permanent place in God’s spiritual temple. Compare Ephesians 2:20-22; 1 Peter 2:5.

The name of my God-the name of the city of my God-my new name; thus marking him as belonging for ever to God, to the city of God, and to Christ, who has redeemed him by his own blood. The new name of Christ is that which belongs to him in his glorified state as the conqueror of death and all the powers of darkness. It therefore marks its possessor as admitted to share Christ’s glory with him. Compare verse Revelation 3:21; John 17:24.

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Edwards, Justin. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "Family Bible New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/fam/revelation-3.html. American Tract Society. 1851.

Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible

‘He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the Temple of my God, and he will leave it no more, and I will write on him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem which comes down from Heaven from my God, and my own new name.’

Here is Christ’s clear indication that the coming Temple of God is a spiritual one. Those who are overcomers will be made part of that Temple, the guarantee that they will be in the presence of God forever (see John 17:12; John 18:9).

They will also be clearly identified as His. He will write on them the name of God, to show they are His, and the name of the new Jerusalem which descends from Heaven (Revelation 21:2; Revelation 21:10) to show that they belong there, and Christ’s own new name to show that they belong to the glorified Christ.

This new name, only known to those who receive it (Revelation 2:17), is the sure sign that they are His. In Revelation 2 they wear it proudly on the pure white stone, probably seen as on their breasts and on their shoulders as with the High Priest. Here the name is written personally on them (see Revelation 14:1; Revelation 22:4. Compare Isaiah 49:16 where the names of His own are written on His hands). We must not overpress the symbolism. It is the idea that matters, not the form in which it is put. So once again, in a different form, the overcomer is guaranteed eternal life.

This designation with a new name is spoken of in Isaiah 65:15. There the so-called people of God have forsaken the Lord, and have prepared a table for Fortune and filled up cups with mingled wine to Destiny, and because of this they themselves are rejected and forsaken and their name will become a curse. They have become enslaved by the occult, and caught up in fortune telling and belief in Fate. So God promises that He will call by another name those who have sought Him and are faithful to Him, His chosen ones, His servants (Isaiah 65:9-10). How much clearer could He have put it that those who take the new name have replaced those who bore the old, for they are the true seed of Jacob (Isaiah 65:9).

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Pett, Peter. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible ". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pet/revelation-3.html. 2013.

Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament

Revelation 3:12. We have now the promise to him that overcometh, which is divided into three parts, not two. (1) Him will I make a pillar in the temple of my God. He shall not merely be a living stone in the temple, but something much more beautiful and glorious. It may be doubted if the idea of stability ought to be introduced here in connection with the word ‘pillar.’ That idea seems to be drawn from the words immediately following, which have been improperly associated with those before us. The thought of the pillar is rather that of ornament and beauty to the building of which it is a part. (2) And he shall in no wise come forth any more. These words are not to be taken in the sense of, he shall be in no danger of being thrust out or of falling away. They rather form, when rightly viewed, a remarkable illustration of the unity of thought between the Apocalypse and the fourth Gospel, as well as of that close identification of the believer with his Lord which is so prominent in each. The verb ‘come forth,’ as used of Jesus in the fourth Gospel, expresses not only His original derivation from the Father, but His whole manifestation of Himself as the ‘sent’ of God (John 8:42; John 13:3; John 16:30; John 18:1 and note there). It includes, therefore, the thought of all His suffering and sorrow, of all His humiliation and self-sacrifice until He returned to the Father. In a similar sense it seems to be used of the believer here. The Lord is now exalted in glory, and ‘comes forth’ no more; the believer, when crowned with his glory, shall in like manner be safe from all future trial. (3) And I will write upon him, etc. Three things are to be written, not upon the pillar, but upon the victorious believer—first, the name of my God. Considering the manner in which one part of the Apocalypse enlarges and explains another, it is hardly possible not to take this part of the promise as an enlargement of what has already met us in chap. Revelation 2:17. We are thus led to think again of the inscription upon the forehead of the high priest. Secondly, the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God. The Jerusalem referred to is not the earthly but the heavenly city, the city now with God, but which is hereafter to descend (chap. Revelation 21:2; Revelation 21:10). Thirdly, my new name, that is, a name of Christ in His character as Redeemer. All three things mentioned refer to the blessings of the covenant. They express in one way or another the relation of the believer to God as his Father, to Christ as the Revelation of the Father, and to the privileges and joys of citizenship in the kingdom made known to us in the Father and the Son. They thus appear not substantially different from the promise of Revelation 2:17, but rather an expansion of the ‘new’ name there spoken of. They contain a fuller statement of its contents, and bring to view alike the Lord whom His people serve, and the spirit in which they serve Him. We may note the correspondence, too, between witnessing to the name of Christ in Revelation 3:8, and the bestowal of the name mentioned in the promise. May it also be that there is a correspondence between the description of the Lord in Revelation 3:7 as ‘He that is holy,’ and the ‘name’ here given to him that overcomes? If so, we shall be the more led to think of the inscription upon the forehead of the high priest as the basis of the description of Revelation 3:12.

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Schaff, Philip. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/scn/revelation-3.html. 1879-90.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

Temple = sanctuary. Greek. naos. See Matthew 23:16 and App-88.

upon. App-104.

new Jerusalem. See Revelation 21:2, Revelation 21:3, Revelation 21:10. Compare Psalms 48:1, Psalms 48:2, Psalms 48:8, Psalms 48:9. Ezekiel 48:35. See App-88and App-197.4.

new, new. Greek. kainos. See Matthew 9:17.

heaven. See Matthew 6:9. Occurs fifty-two times in Rev., always in sing, save Revelation 12:12.

new name. See Revelation 14:1; Revelation 22:4. Isaiah 62:2; Isaiah 65:15. Contrast the name branded on the worshippers of the beast, Revelation 13:16; Revelation 14:11; Revelation 19:20; Revelation 20:4.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/revelation-3.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.

Pillar in the temple. In one sense there shall be 'no temple' in the heavenly city, because there shall be no distinction of things sacred and secular; for all shall be holy to the Lord. The city shall be one great temple, in which the saints shall be not merely stones, as in the spiritual temple on earth, but eminent as pillars: immovably firm (unlike Philadelphia, the city so often shaken by earthquakes, Strabo, 12 and 13:), like the colossal pillars before Solomon's temple, Boaz (i:e., 'in it is strength') and Jachin ('it shall be established'). Those pillars were outside, these shall be within the temple.

My God - (note, Revelation 2:7.)

Go no more out, [ ou-mee (Greek #3364) eti (Greek #2089)] - never more at all. As the elect angels are beyond possibility of falling, being under 'the blessed necessity of goodness,' so shall the saints be priests forever unto God (Revelation 1:6). The door shall once for all shut safely in forever the elect, and shut out the lost (Matthew 25:10; John 8:35 : cf. Isaiah 22:23, the type, Eliakim). 'Who would not yearn for that city out of which no friend departs, into which no enemy enters?' (Augustine.)

Write upon him the name of my God - belonging to God in a special sense (Revelation 7:3; Revelation 9:4; Revelation 14:1; especially Revelation 22:4), therefore secure. As the golden plate on the high priest's forehead bore Yahweh's name, "Holiness to the Lord" (Exodus 28:36-38), so the saints in their royal priesthood shall bear His name openly, as consecrated to Him. Compare its caricature in the brand on the forehead of the beast's followers (Revelation 13:16-17), and on the harlot (Revelation 17:5 : cf. Revelation 20:4).

Name of the city of my God - as one of its citizens (Revelation 21:2-3; Revelation 21:10), briefly alluded to by anticipation here. The full description forms the appropriate close of the book. The saints' citizenship is now hidden, then it shall be manifested: he shall have the right to enter in through the gates into the city (Revelation 22:14) - the city which Abraham looked for (Hebrews 11:10).

New, [ kainees (Greek #2537)]. Not the old Jerusalem, once "the holy city," but having forfeited the name. [Nea would express that it had recently come into existence; kainee (Greek #2537), that which is new and different, superseding the worn-out old Jerusalem and its polity (Hebrews 8:13).] 'John, in the gospel, applies to the old city the Greek, Hierosolyma; but in the Apocalypse, always, to the heavenly city, the Hebrew, Hierousalem. The Hebrew is the original and holier name; the Greek, the recent secular one' (Bengel).

My new name - at present incommunicable: only known to God; to be hereafter revealed as the believer's own in union with God in Christ. Christ's name written on him denotes he shall be wholly Christ's. New also relates to Christ, who shall assume a new character (answering to His "new name"), taking with His saints a kingdom; not what He had with the Father before the worlds, but that earned by His humiliation as Son of man. Gibbon ('Decline and Fall,' ch. 64:) gives an unwilling testimony to the fulfillment of prophecy as to Philadelphia temporally: 'Among the Greek churches of Asia, Philadelphia is still erect-a column in a scene of ruins; a pleasing example that the paths of honour and safety may sometimes be the same.'

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/revelation-3.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(12) Will I make a pillar.—A pillar, and an unshaken one. There may be reference to the frequent earthquakes which had shaken down buildings in their city. Those who overcome will prove real supports to the great Christian temple. (Comp. Galatians 2:9.)

Write upon him.—Or, grave upon it. On the sides of the four marble pillars which survive as ruins of Philadelphia inscriptions are to be found. The writing would be the name of God, the name of the heavenly Jerusalem and (omit the repetition, “I will write upon him”) the new, unknown name of Christ Himself. The allusion is to the golden frontlet inscribed with the name of Jehovah. (Comp. Revelation 22:4.) He will reflect the likeness of God; and not only so, he will bear the tokens—now seen in all clearness—of his heavenly citizenship (Philippians 3:20; Hebrews 12:22-23). And a further promise implies that in the day of the last triumph, as there will be new revealings of Christ’s power, there will be unfolded to the faithful and victorious new and higher possibilities of purity. Thus does Scripture refuse to recognise any finality which is not a beginning as well as an end—a landing-stage in the great law of continuity. (See Revelation 2:17; Revelation 19:12.)

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/revelation-3.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.
overcometh
2:7; 17:14; 1 John 2:13,14; 4:4
pillar
1 Kings 7:21; Jeremiah 1:18; Galatians 2:9
I will
2:17; 14:1; 22:4
the city
21:2,10-27; Psalms 48:8; 87:3; Galatians 4:26,27; Hebrews 12:22
my new
22:4; Isaiah 65:15; Ephesians 3:15
Reciprocal: 1 Samuel 17:25 - the king;  Ezra 9:8 - in his holy place;  Psalm 45:15 - they shall;  Psalm 61:4 - abide;  Psalm 65:4 - causest;  Proverbs 9:1 - pillars;  Song of Solomon 3:4 - I held;  Song of Solomon 3:10 - GeneralIsaiah 33:20 - not one;  Isaiah 43:7 - called;  Isaiah 56:5 - and a;  Isaiah 60:14 - The city;  Ezekiel 40:49 - pillars;  Ezekiel 41:1 - to the temple;  Mark 12:16 - image;  Luke 2:37 - which;  Luke 6:23 - your;  John 14:2 - my;  Galatians 6:9 - if;  1 Timothy 4:8 - having;  1 Peter 2:5 - also;  1 John 5:4 - overcometh;  Revelation 2:26 - he;  Revelation 12:11 - they overcame;  Revelation 13:17 - name;  Revelation 19:12 - a name;  Revelation 22:19 - and from

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/revelation-3.html.

Walter Scott's Commentary on Revelation

PHILADELPHIAN REWARDS.

Revelation 3:12. — "He that overcomes, him will I make a pillar in the temple of My God, and he shall go no more at all out; and I will write upon him the Name of My God, and the name of the city of My God, the new Jerusalem which comes down out of Heaven from My God, and My new Name." An overcomer{*Witnesses in Hebrews 11:1-40, Overcomers in Revelation 2:1-29; Revelation 3:1-22. The former refer to Old Testament worthies the latter to New Testament saints.} in Philadelphia is one who, though in weakness, yet holds on his way. His progress is not marked by distinguished achievements, but he struggles on. The deepening conflict strengthens faith, and leads to increasing faithfulness. He holds fast with a tight and tightening grip Christ's Word, Name, Patience, and Coming. Life itself may be surrendered, but not the things which constitute the crown of his testimony. The weakness of earth is to be exchanged for the stability of Heaven. "Him will I make a pillar in the temple of My God." There will be no material temple in Heaven (Revelation 21:22); there will be one on earth in the time of the apocalyptic judgments (Revelation 11:1-2). "The temple of My God" refers to the sanctuary above. Solomon set up two immense brazen pillars in the porch of the temple remarkable for strength and solidity (1 Kings 7:21). The names of these pillars were Jachin, establish, and Boaz, strength. The allusion in our text is to these pillars. The weak and tried Philadelphian believer, cast out it may be of the orthodox and popular assembly on earth, shall be established and made strong in the eternal blessedness of Heaven. This high position is a fixed and eternal one: "He shall go no more at all out."

12. — "I will write upon him the Name of My God." The blessedness of knowing God, too, shall be the conqueror's happy portion. But the tale of grace is not yet finished. The city of My God, the new Jerusalem which has her proper home in Heaven (Revelation 21:9-10), pours out her wealth of blessedness to crown the overcomer. Then last, but not least, Christ's new Name will be graven for ever on each one of the conquering band. His new Name indicates His special relationship with the whole scene and sum of heavenly blessedness. While in all things He exceedeth, yet surely we may read these peculiarly rich and full promises as intimating association with Christ in the future scene of glory. How Christ loves to connect us with Himself in the enumeration of these rewards! My God, My Name, etc., occurring five times.

The address to the angel of the Church in Philadelphia closes with the usual call to hear. May the hearing ear be granted to each reader!

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Scott, Walter. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "Walter Scott's Commentary on Revelation". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/sor/revelation-3.html.

E.M. Zerr's Commentary on Selected Books of the New Testament

Him that overcometh is equivalent to being faithful until death. Make a pillar is a figure of speech signifying a fixed or permanent place in the favor of God, and go no more out emphasizes the same thought. Write upon him . . . name of the city. Another figure meaning the faithful servant will be recognized as a citizen of the celestial city. (See Philippians 3:20.) My new name means a name that will signify a victorious life for Christ. (See comments at Revelation 2:17.)

Revelation 3:13

He that hath an ear is explained at Revelation 2:7.

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Zerr, E.M. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". E.M. Zerr's Commentary on Selected Books of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/znt/revelation-3.html. 1952.

Hanserd Knollys' Commentary on Revelation

Revelation 3:12

Revelation 3:12 Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.

Him that overcometh, will I make a pillar in the temple of my God.

There were two pillars in the temple at Jerusalem, 1 Kings 7:15. One, Solomon called Jachin, that Isaiah, he shall establish; the other he called Boaz, that Isaiah, with strength, 1 Kings 7:21. The pillars in God's gospel temple, are Christ's able ministers of the New Testament, Galatians 2:9. Peter, and James and John, who seemed to be pillars: I will; make him a pillar; that is Christ will establish him. and strengthen him, so that he shall be able to strengthen others who are weak, and help to support and strengthen them. Another use of pillars; is to bear forth the edicts and laws of kings, and their renowned acts engraven upon them; such was Absalom's pillar, 2 Samuel 18:18 so the Church of the living God, is called the pillar and ground of truth, 1 Timothy 3:15.

And he shall go no more out,

that Isaiah, he shall have a name in the house of God, and dwell there, and abide there.

And I will write upon him the name of my God.

By the name of God, here we may understand his communicable attributes of truth, faithfulness, mercy, and holiness, which Christ writes upon those pillars in God's house; not with ink, but by the Spirit of the living God, 2 Corinthians 3:3 in the fleshly tables of their hearts.

And the name of the city of my God.

This city is the new Jerusalem, mentioned Revelation 21:1-2. and is the Church of the first-born, written in heaven, Hebrews 12:22-24.

And I will write upon him my new name,

that Isaiah, the Son of God, Revelation 21:7 and he shall be my Son. So then, He that overcometh shall be made a fellow-citizen with the saints, and of the household of God, Ephesians 2:19.

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Knollys, Hanserd. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "Hanserd Knollys' Commentary on Revelation". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hkc/revelation-3.html.

Ernst Hengstenberg on John, Revelation, Ecclesiastes, Ezekiel & Psalms

Revelation 3:12. He that overcomes, him will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall not go out any more. And I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the New Jerusalem, the city of my God, that comes down from heaven from my God, and my name the new. On the temple as a figurative designation of the church, comp. in ch. Revelation 11:1. Here the temple can only be the church triumphant. For, the concluding promises to the churches refer always to that future existence, and here in the second promise it is the New Jerusalem that is discoursed of, in contrast to the Old Jerusalem, the militant church. That we are not to think alone of the regeneration, Matthew 19:28, the church on the glorified earth, that it rather points to the state of final blessedness in heaven, appears from ch. Revelation 7:15. This alone might be understood, with Bengel, according to ch. Revelation 21:22. However, it is more simple to say, that the discourse there is of a common material temple, and only this is denied to have a place in the new Jerusalem. For the temple here is manifestly contemplated as one perpetually abiding, and must consequently denote the triumphant Christian church in its two states of existence, which in the Apocalypse are constantly represented as an internally united whole. That by the pillar only one thing is brought into view, the unchangeable stability, is made perfectly plain by the explanatory clause, which excludes all doubt, "and shall no more go out." Those who have sought to find more in the image, have not considered, that it is spoken not of some peculiarly distinguished Christians, but of Christians generally (for to be a conqueror and to be a Christian is the same thing); also, that in the second promise a simple participation in the kingdom of glory is what is certified; and that the concluding promises generally unfold only what is common to all Christians, eternal blessedness. Substantially what is said in John 8:35, coincides with the promise before us, "The servant does not remain in the house for ever (the spiritual house, the church), the Son remains for ever." The expression, "my God," occurs in the verse four times, no doubt intentionally—perhaps, with a respect to the four letters in the name Jehovah, which must now be disclosed in its whole depth to the elect.

Upon him, upon the conqueror, not upon the pillar. For the latter was no longer the subject of discourse in the immediately preceding context; the not going out, only suits the conqueror, not at all the pillar; and in ch. Revelation 14:1 the chosen have the name of Christ and the name of the Father written on their foreheads. That the chosen are distinguished by the name of the Father, points to this, that the most high God is over them, that they dwell as his dear property, ch. Revelation 7:15. That they bear the name of the New Jerusalem (comp. on ch. Revelation 21:2), characterizes them as its citizens. That Christ's new name is also written on them, which, according to ch. Revelation 19:16, runs, "King of kings and Lord of lords," imports that they must be received into fellowship with the new state, which is marked by the new name, that they shall "reign with him for ever," Revelation 22:5.

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Hengstenberg, Ernst. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". Ernst Hengstenberg on John, Revelation, Ecclesiastes, Ezekiel & Psalms. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/heg/revelation-3.html.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

12.A pillar—An emblem of his unchangeable permanence in the final heaven; not limited to a few eminent rulers, like the “pillars” of Galatians 2:9, but including every saint in the New Jerusalem. Such a pillar is not, like the Jachin and Boaz of Solomon’s temple, outside, but inside—namely, of the living temple, the glorified Church. A tall pillar still stands a most conspicuous object in the city of Philadelphia, reminding the modern traveller of this passage, if it be not the source of the allusion. This permanence is explicitly expressed in the words he shall go no more out. He is, then, a fixed pillar; forever God’s, whose name is written upon him, and the name also of the city which is to be his eternal home. His name is Jehovah, and its name is the New Jerusalem, whose glories are unfolded in 22. In addition to the name of my God, Christ writes upon him his own new name, thus doubling the ownership; a name, as already said, which is not a mere word, but a power; namely, the full, final, glorifying power embraced in the word Jesus, Saviour, Redeemer, and which is new at the glorious resurrection in its renewing effect upon soul and body, and then will be forever and forever new; forever renewing the man in the image of Jesus. Thrice is the phrase my God here repeated; my as a term of claiming affection shared with Christ by all saints: God, as the primordial and eternal author and assurer of the whole great plan; thrice occurring as symbol of the divine threefoldness. In the permanence of the heavenly system and the saints’ abode, the whole Trinity is pledged, with all the omnipotence and immutability of God.

Though we find no temporal promises of prosperity to the little Church, yet it is historically true, that in the midst of the changes of war which have swept over this land, Philadelphia has had a wonderful preservation. The bravery of its inhabitants, whose home overlies the sleeping earthquakes, has ever signalized it in its own defences. On this subject see the impressive language of Gibbon. “In the loss of Ephesus, the Christians deplored the fall of the first angel, the extinction of the first candlestick, of the Revelation; the desolation is complete; and the temple of Diana or the Church of Mary will equally elude the search of the curious traveller. The circus and the three stately theatres of Laodicea are now peopled with wolves and foxes; Sardis is reduced to a miserable village; the God of Mohammed, without a rival or a son, is invoked in the mosques of Thyatira and Pergamos, and the populousness of Smyrna is supported by the foreign trade of the Franks and the Armenians. Philadelphia alone has been saved by prophecy or courage. At a distance from the sea, forgotten by the emperors, encompassed on all sides by the Turks, her valiant citizens defended their religion and freedom above fourscore years, and at length capitulated with the proudest of the Ottomans. Among the Greek colonies and Churches of Asia, Philadelphia is still erect—a column in a scene of ruins—a pleasing example that the paths of honour and safety may sometimes be the same.” When Brewer visited the place, in 1831, he found the Greek population about 2,000 souls, being three or four hundred families, amid as many thousand Turkish. “As a whole they have, for a century or two past, had a good name among travellers as a civil and hospitable people.”

 

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/revelation-3.html. 1874-1909.

The Expositor's Greek Testament

Revelation 3:12. The reward of steadfastness here is a stable relation to God and absolute (trebly verified) assurance of eternal life, permanence (verbally inconsistent with Revelation 21:22) (four times in this verse). From Strabo (xii. 868[905] , : xiii. 936 B., . · , , . . .) we learn that the city was liable to frequent and severe earthquakes, one of which had produced such ruin a while ago (Tac Ann. ii. 47) that the citizens had to be exempted from Imperial taxation and assisted to repair their buildings. These local circumstances (cf. Juv. vi. 411; Dio Cass. lxviii. 25; Renan, 335) lend colour to this promise, which would also appeal to citizens of a city whose numerous festivals and temples are said to have won for it the sobriquet of “a miniature Athens” (E. Bi. 3692). The promise is alluded to in Ep. Lugd., where God’s grace is said to have “delivered the weak and set them up as able by means of their patience to stand all angry onsets of the evil one,” and Attalus of Pergamos is termed a of the local Christians. Permanent communion with God is further expressed in terms of the widespread ethnic belief that to be ignorant of a god’s name meant inability to worship him, whereas to know that name implied the power of entering into fellowship with him. “Just as writing a name on temple-walls puts the owner of the name in continual union with the deity of the temple, so for early man the knowledge, invocation and vain repetition of the deity’s name constitutes in itself an actual, if mystic, union with the deity named” (Jevons’ Introd. Hist. Religion, 1896, p. 245; cf. Jastrow, p. 173). , . . ., inscriptions upon pillars being a common feature of Oriental architecture, cf. Cooke’s North Semitic Inscriptions, p. 266, names on pillars; also Reitzenstein’s Poimandres, 20. The provincial priest of the Imperial cultus erected his statue in the temple at the close of his year’s official reign, inscribing on it his own name and his father’s, his place of birth and year of office. Hence some of the mysterious imagery of this verse, applied to Christians as priests of God in the next world. This is more probable than to suspect an allusion to what was written on the high priest’s forehead (Exodus 28:36, cf.Revelation 7:3; Revelation 14:1; Revelation 17:5; Revelation 22:4). Pillars were also, of course, sculptured now and then in human shape. For the first (a) of the three names, cf. Baba Bathra, 75, 2: R. Samuel ait R. Jochanan dixisse tres appellari nomine Dei, justos (Isaiah 43:7), Messiam (Jeremiah 23:6), Hierosolyma (Ezekiel 48:35); also Targ. Jerus. on Exod. xxviii. 30, quisquis memorat illud nomen sanctum [i.e., ] in hora necessitatis, eripitur, et occulta reteguntur. Where a name was equivalent in one sense to personality and character, to have a divine name conferred on one or revealed to one was equivalent to being endowed with divine power. The divine “hidden name” (Asc. Isa. i. 7 Jewish: “as the Lord liveth whose name has not been sent into this world,” cf.Revelation 8:7) was (according to En. lxix. 14f.) known to Michael, and had talismanic power over dæmons. Perhaps an allusion to this also underlies the apocalyptic promise, the talismanic metaphor implying that God grants to the victorious Christian inviolable safety against evil spirits (cf.Romans 8:38-39). The second (b) name denotes (cf.Isaiah 56:5, Ezekiel 48:35) that the bearer belongs not merely to God but to the heavenly city and society of God. Since rabbinic speculation was sure that Abraham had the privilege of knowing the mysterious new name for Jerusalem in the next world, John claims this for the average and honest Christian. On the connexion between the divine name and the temple, see 3 Maccabees 2:9; 3 Maccabees 2:14, Judith 9:8, etc. The third (c) “my own new name” (Revelation 19:12) is reflected in Asc. Isa. ix. 5 (the Son of God, et nomen eius non potes audire donec de carne exibis); it denotes some esoteric, incommunicable, pre-existent (LXX of Psalms 71:17, En. lxix. 26, cf. R. J. 249, 344) title, the knowledge of which meant power to invoke and obtain help from its bearer. The whole imagery (as in Revelation 2:17, Revelation 19:12) is drawn from the primitive superstition that God’s name. like a man’s name, must be kept secret, lest if known it might be used to the disadvantage of the bearer (Frazer’s Golden Bough, 2nd ed. i. 443 f.). The close tie between the name and the personality in ancient life lent the former a secret virtue. Especially in Egyptian and in Roman belief, to learn a god’s name meant to share his power, and often “the art of the magician consisted in obtaining from the gods a revelation of their sacred names”. The point made by the prophet here is that the Christian God bestows freely upon his people the privilege of invoking his aid successfully, and of entering into his secret nature; also, perhaps, of security in the mysterious future across death. See the famous ch. 125. of E. B. D. where the successive doors will not allow Nu to pass till he tells them their names (cf. chapters cxli. f.). Ignatius tells the Philadelphians (obviously referring to this passage, ad Phil. 6) that people unsound upon the truth of Jesus Christ are to him , . The is emphatic. In the survival of 2 Peter during the later conquests which left the other six towns of the Apocalypse more or less ruined, Gibbon (ch. 64.) irrelevantly finds “a pleasing example that the paths of honour and safety may sometimes be the same”.

[905] Codex Vaticanus (sæc. iv.), published in photographic facsimile in 1889 under the care of the Abbate Cozza-Luzi.

[906]. Codex Porphyrianus (sæc. ix.), at St. Petersburg, collated by Tischendorf. Its text is deficient for chap. Revelation 2:13-16.

 

 

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Bibliographical Information
Nicol, W. Robertson, M.A., L.L.D. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". The Expositor's Greek Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/egt/revelation-3.html. 1897-1910.

The Bible Study New Testament

12. I will make him. The victory prize is to be permanently with God! See Psalms 27:4. In the temple. The church of Christ (Ephesians 2:22). I will write on him. When one enters Christ’s church, the spiritual temple on earth, three names are written on him [Father, Son, Holy Spirit – Matthew 28:19]. When he enters the Eternal temple, three names are written on him [the name of my God, the name of the city of my God, my new name (Jesus speaking)].

 

 

 

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Ice, Rhoderick D. "Commentary on Revelation 3:12". "The Bible Study New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ice/revelation-3.html. College Press, Joplin, MO. 1974.