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are kept separate in the eye of their Lord, and by him shall be considered as his own.
Ib. Garments—white.] By an easy and obvious metaphor *, what raiment is on the body, its cover and ornament, such is the habit of practice to the soul. "I put on righteousness, and it clothed me,”
" my judgment was a robe and a diadem.” Conformably to which method of speaking, the Christian is required “to put off the old man, to put
on the new, to put on Christ t;" which expressions are explained by their context to signify, that he should " be renewed in the spirit of his mind, and put “on the righteousness which is by faith.” In this allegorical form of speech, our Lord describes his servants as invited to the wedding of their great Master; when one of them, appearing without a wedding garment, is sentenced to be cast into outer darkness. This garment is white, pure, free from stain of sin, made clean, as it is expressed not only in the Apocalypse but in other passages of Scripture, by the blood of the Lamb I. Sin defiles the soul, as earthly impurities do the bodily raiment; and there is no other means of cleansing, but propitiating blood; not the blood of bulls and goats, for these were only typical, but the blood of the Redeemer, of the holy victim, slain, in the counsel of God, from the foundation of the world. If we would be clothed in this raiment, in which alone we can appear pure and ac
* For the gradual formation of which, see 1 Sam. xviii. 4. 2 Sam. i. 24. Is, xxii. 21. lxi. 10. Dan. v. 7. Luke xv. 22. xvi, 19. Also, Herodotus, Thalia, lxxxiv. Xenoph. Anab. lib. i.
+ Eph. iv, 22. 27. Gal. iii. 27.
1. See 1 John i. 7. Ps. li. 7. Dan. xi, 35. 1 Pet. i. 19. Heb. xi. 13. Rev. vii. 14.
ceptable ceptable before God, we must put on faith, working in us, by love, the best moral conduct; agreeably to which explanation, this acceptable white garment is (in chap. xix. 8,) affirmed to be “the righteousness “ of the Saints."
Ver. 5. White raiment.] See the preceding note, to which we may add this observation; that the expression Ev levxoiç is peculiar to Saint John; see chap. xx. 12. where it is applied to the shining appearance of angels; also Mark xvi. 5. otorn deuxn, which in SaintLuke is expressed by εν εσθησεσιν αστραπτεσαις, ,
whence we may collect that neunos applied to garments means a white of a dazzling brightness and splendour, such as arrays angelic beings.
Ib. Book of life.] As in states and cities, those who obtained freedom and fellowship, were enrolled in the public register, which enrolment was their title to the privileges of citizens; so the King of heaven, of the new Jerusalem, engages to preserve in his register and enrolment, in the book of life, the names of those, who like the good Sardians, in a corrupted and supine society, shall preserve allegiance and a faithful discharge of their Christian duties. He will own them as his fellow-citizens, before men and angels t.
The result of these observations will enable us perhaps to explain a passage in the 2d Epistle to the Corinthians, (ch. v. 3.) which seems to have perplexed the commentators : “ If so, that being “ clothed, we shall not be found naked : that is, if at the day of Judgment, when we must necessarily appear without our corporeal integuments, we shall have obtained that clothing, which alone can make us fit to appear in the Divine presence; that white, pure wedding garment, the righteousness of the Saints, without which no one can be admitted to the presence of God.
+ Matt. ix. 32. Luke xii. 8. See also Psalm lxix. 28. Ezek, xiii. 9. Exod. xxxii. 33. Dan. xii. 1. Mal. iii. 16. Luke x. 20.
The Address to the Church in Philadelphia.
CHAP. iii. VER. 7-13.
7 Και τα αγέλη της
έν Φιλαδελφεία εκκλησίας γράψουν Τάδε λέγει ο άγιο, ο αληθινός, ο έχων την κλειδα το ΔαΕιδ· και ανοίγων, και έδεις κλείει» και
κλείει, και έδεις ανοίκαι γει" οίδα σε τα
έgία: 1δε, δέδωκα ενώπιόν σε θύραν ανεωμένην, ήν έδεις δύναται κλείσαι αυτην: ότι μικράν χεις δύναμιν, και ετήρησάς με τον λόγον,
και έκ ηρνήσω το όνο9 μα με. Ιδε, δίδωμι
εκ της συναγωγής το σατανά τον λεγόνων έαυτές Inδαίες είναι, και εκείσιν, άλλα ψεύδονίαι» ιδε, σοιήσω αυτές, ένα ήξωσι και προσ κυνήσωσιν ενώπιον των ποδών σε, και
γνώσιν, ότι εγώ ή10 γάπησά σε: “Ότι
ετήρησας τον λόγον της υπομονής με, κάγώ σε τηρήσω εκ
7 And unto the Angel
of the Church in Philadelphia, write: Thus saith He that is holy; He that is true; He who hath the key of David; He who openeth and no one shut
teth, and shutteth and 8 no
one openeth : 1 know thy works; behold, I have set before thee an opened door, which no one can shut: because thou hast little strength, and hast kept my word, and hast
not denied my name, 9 Behold, I give unto
thee those of the synagogue of Satan, (who say of themselves that they are Jews, and are not, but speak falsely, behold, I will make them) to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that
I have loved thee. 10 Because thou hast
kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the
7 And to the Angel of
the Church in Philadelphia, write, These things saith He that is holy; He that is true; He that hath the key of David; He that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth,
and no man openeth: 8 I know thy works :
behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it: for thou hast a little strength, and hast kept my word, and
hast not denied my 9 name. Behold, I will
make them of the synagogue of Satan (which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie); behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that
I have loved thee, 10 Because thou hast
kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation,
της ώρας το σειεασμα της μελλέσης έρχεσθαι επι της οικεμένης όλης, , σειράσαι τες καλοι
κενίας επί της γης. . 11 "Έρχομαι ταχύ
κράτει και έχεις, ένα
μηδεις λάση τον τε12 φανόν σε. Ο νικών,
σοιήσω αυτόν σύλoν εν τω ναώ τ8 Θεέ με, και έξω και μη εξέλθη έτι και γράψω επ' αυτόν όνομα τ8 Θεέ με, και το όνομα της πόλεως το Θε8 με, της καινης Ιερεσαλήμ, η καταβαίνεσα εκ το έραν από τα Θεέ με, και το όνο
μά με το καινόν. 13'0 ixws, á xecáTa,
τί το πνεύμα λέγει ταϊς εκκλησίαις. .
hour of trial, which is
try those who dwell
coming soon; hold fast
that no one take thy
cometh, him will I
God; even my new
ear, let him hear what
which shall come upon all the world, to try
them that dwell upon 11 the earth. Behold,
I come quickly: hold that fast which thou
hast, that no man take 12 thy crown. 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 13 him my new name. He
that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the Churches,
Ver. 7. Philadelphia.] This city, in the times of Strabo, that is, not long before the date of this vision, had been so often shaken by earthquakes, that it was in a great measure deserted by its inhabitants; which may in some degree account for the poverty of its Church, as described in this Epistle. And its poverty may also in some degree account for its virtue, which is so highly commended *. Melito, an eminent Bishop of this see, and a Christian apologist in the second cen.
Strabo, ii. lib. xii.
tury, appears to have written on the Apocalypse *. That such a man, in such a situation, so near to the time when the Apocalypse was published, should acknowledge it as divine, by commenting upon it, is a strong argument for its authenticity. Unfortunately this work of his is lost.
Philadelphia appears to have resisted the attacks of the Turks in 1312, with more success than the other cities t; but at length it fell under their domination. It still contains (probably as being the last which was subdued) more Christian families than most of the others. Modern travellers represent four Christian Churches standing in this place, and above 200 houses inhabited by Christians.
Ib. He that is holy.] This epithet belongs appropriately to the Deity. He alone is holy $: the Holy One. But, by communication, the same epithet descends to the only begotten Son, who, as such, partaking the nature of the Father, is styled the Holy One ş.
Ib. He that is true.] This epithet, like the preceding, is applicable only to the Father, who is novos armorvos 80s, the only true God (John xviii. 3.); but descends also to the Son, “the express image of the “Father,” “the Truth and the Lifel.” He is the true bread, the true vine, the true light, and is emphatically denominated The True One f.
Ib. Key of David.] See note, ch. i. 18.
Ver. 8. Opened door.] Our Lord has rendered the everlasting glories of his kingdom of easy access to the faithful and repentant: 1st, Because he has made
Euseb. Hist. Eccl.
+ Gibbon, vi, 314.
f 1 John v. 20.